Global index provider MSCI will roll out a series of ‘solutions as a service’ (SaaS) created with Microsoft, aiming at the institutional investment market.
In a release last week, MSCI says its new ‘Investment Solutions as a Service’ offer will launch this year in key areas: indexing; data management; analytics; and, environmental, social and governance (ESG).
“… the service will combine Microsoft’s Cloud and AI technologies with MSCI’s extensive data sets, analytical models and deep expertise of the global investment industry to power next-generation investment decision making,” the statement says.
Under the arrangement, clients will be able to tap into the MSCI benchmark construction tools for “the first time” to build bespoke indices.
“The service is aimed at delivering an insightful and efficient experience that shortens the time from market hypothesis to new customized indexes,” the release says.
“…It will provide clients with a seamless, self-service experience to create, back test and analyze customized indexes; compare those indexes against established benchmarks; refine their creations through an iterative process and order them from MSCI.”
The benchmark specialist also says its ESG data-kit will help institutional investors understand climate risks in their portfolios, among other factors.
According to the MSCI statement, the ESG system “will provide detailed insights on companies’ adaptive capacity to climate change, carbon footprint measurements, as well as exposure to physical risk, including climate-related events such as hurricanes and flooding”.
As well, the data management and analytics SaaS modules will allow clients to dig out deeper insights from the exponentially growing mountain of investment information, the release says,
Combining MSCI datasets with Microsoft cloud and artificial intelligence tools, clients can “select and analyze historical markets data on a range of asset classes and develop their own investment solutions that meet their specific risk and portfolio construction needs”.
MSCI struck a ‘strategic alliance’ with Microsoft last year to shift its systems and data across to the software giant’s Azure platform. A string of other investment firms including BlackRock (for its influential Aladdin risk analytics platform) have recently signed on to the Azure technology.
Henry Fernandez, MSCI chief, said in the release: “The partnership with Microsoft underscores MSCI’s continued commitment to develop new and innovative investing solutions.”