Australian Security Exchange Announces Major Technological Overhaul

Asia Blockchain Review
November 25, 2019

Australia’s national stock exchange is giving itself a technological makeover that will see the incorporation of blockchain-based solutions.

Reported by Computer Weekly, the Australian Security Exchange (ASX) is replacing its Clearing House Electronic Subregister System (Chess) with one utilizing distributed ledger technology.

Switch to Distributed Ledger to be “Once in a Generation”

ASX’s revamp is being called a ‘once-in-a-generation’ move to modernize the exchange and empower it to provide tech-based financial services.  By March 2021, the bourse is to replace the Cobol-based Chess system with distributed ledger technology. It has already begun switching out software and training staff.

ASX has admitted that it is still far from being completely with the times. At Pivotal Summit 2019 held in Sydney, David Campbell, ASX General Manager for Engineering and Architecture, remarked, “If we were climbing a mountain, we have left base camp – we are through the foothills and into the escarpments.”

Overhaul Necessary to Support Digital Services

Nonetheless, Campbell acknowledged the necessity of the upgrade, saying, “We are doing this not just for the sake of technological currency, but also to understand how best we can support our customers to innovate for their customers. Continuing this role of innovation to the financial services sector is absolutely critical to the ASX.”

Initially, the upgrade is to be most prominently experienced in the clearings and transactions realm. Campbell stated, “In our clearing and settlement business, we process several million trades a day and we transact through five billion dollars of delivery versus settlement.” Switching to digital ledger technology will significantly speed up these activities.


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