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MAS to reduce duplication and automate data submission from financial institutions

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The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) says that the measure aims to pre-emptively cap their total credit limit before they are affected by the industry-wide borrowing limit.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) is aiming to eliminate all duplication in data requests to financial institutions by the end of 2019.

To achieve this, MAS has come up with a roadmap to progressively cut down on duplication and automate data submission, it announced on Wednesday.

The roadmap, which will take effect from March 31, will help financial institutions reduce the resources and preparation time needed to produce data requested by the Singapore central bank and will also make it more efficient for it to process and analyse the data collected.

Measures to reduce duplication of data by MAS include using data reusability in its data collection and ensuring that financial institutions need not submit the same data to MAS twice.

In addition, financial institutions will be allowed to decline any request from MAS for structured data that they have previously provided in their regular regulatory submissions to the monetary authority.

This will be extended to other data submitted to MAS through surveys and one-off requests in subsequent phases, MAS added.

MAS also said that all new regulatory returns from financial institutions will need to be submitted in machine-readable formats from April 1. These formats will be extended to new surveys and ad-hoc data requests from 2019.

MAS will seek feedback from financial institutions on providing data in the machine-readable templates prior to 2019 and take into account this feedback before the second phase of implementation, it said.

With the roadmap, changes to how MAS defines its data requirements will be made.

For data that can be aggregated in different ways, MAS intends to collect more detailed data on the underlying transactions instead of the aggregate statistics, which will enable MAS to manipulate the datasets internally according to its analytical needs while reducing the reporting burden on financial institutions.

MAS is working with the industry to determine the appropriate levels of granularity in its data collection, it said.

Said its chief data officer David Hardoon: "MAS is doing a fundamental review of its data collection approach. We will implement these measures in close partnership with the financial industry within a reasonable timeframe. MAS will also upgrade our data collection infrastructure to support these changes.

"This is an opportunity for both MAS and financial institutions to co-create an industry data collection platform that not only benefits MAS as a regulator, but also allows financial institutions to leverage the data collected to improve their operations."