Thursday, December 15, 2011

Big revamp of CDP system under way

Singapore Exchange's (SGX) Central Depository (CDP) system will soon see a radical overhaul, reported The Straits Times.

The CDP, which holds the shares of about 1.4 million individual investors here, will undergo a revamp which will take about three years to complete.

According to the report, one of the key changes that will be implemented will be to allow Singapore's stockbroking firms to gain access to a client's CDP account. With the client's permission, they will be able to find out exactly what stocks are in his portfolio. This will put brokers in a better position to give their client advice on how to tweak their portfolios in response to market movement.

In 1987, when stock trading went paperless, broking firms became unable to access this information in order to assure investors that their shares would be safe with a central depository system. However, SGX chief Magnus Bocker told The Straits Times that this is now "out of sync with the practice in most developed stock markets worldwide".

Other changes will include new computer hardware and software that will cut down on the paperwork generated with transactions performed by an investor. With the new system, they can choose to get statements online instead of receiving mailers.

This is part of an effort by SGX to update its ageing infrastructure, with the CDP currently using 20-year-old technology.

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