With the rise of omnibus accounting, the details of trades and positions can get buried.
The ‘next frontier’: Determining how much to disclose to funds and their boards and how to disclose it.
That’s because details of shares in funds sold by intermediaries increasingly get rolled up in omnibus accounts. As a result, the underlying information may not get disclosed to the fund company effectively -- or regulators, in an era of growing financial disclosure in the service of the kinds of ‘transparency’ that drive reforms such as the Dodd-Frank Act Wall Street Reform Act of 2010.
In fact, sharing all the information in omnibus accounts “can be overwhelming,’’ said Brendan Sullivan, a director at the Pershing unit of BNY Mellon at the 2013 NICSA Annual Conference and Expo.
The question, he said, is how can you slice it and dice it, as needed?
“We have some work to do there,’’ said Mike Roland, a compliance executive with ING Funds.
It’s not clear, he said, what to do about reconciliations of trade data or proxy information.
Plus, said Laura Born, chair of the boards of trustees for Columbia Acorn Trust and Wanger Advisors Trust, there is a “lack of standardization of ‘it,’ whatever ‘it’ is.”
“It’s not the same for every firm,’’ she said.
Brokers are struggling with the amount of detail to supply and putting the information in a format that “gives the information you need in a format you need when you need it.’’
The “next frontier,’’ said Deloitte director Timonthy O’Sullivan, is to find a balance of how much to disclose and how to disclose it.