Redesigning Financial Regulation for the Digital Age
Achieving fair finance will require new regulatory technology. AIR’s whitepaper, A Regtech Manifesto, explains why and offers the roadmap for converting to a digital regulatory system. One US agency head has said it should be “the bible for every regulator.”
Today’s regulatory processes were designed long ago, on paper. They use legacy technology and require extensive manual work. FDIC examiners, for example, spend 450,000 hours a year manually reviewing loan files that are already largely digitized. Regulators rely on fragments of information – sampling of files, reports that lag months behind real time, and aggregated data that can mask problems like credit discrimination and rising systemic risk -- because they don’t yet have tools that can ingest and analyze data in digital form. The Bank of England says that reviewing all the information it receives would take the equivalent of every analyst reading the Complete Works of Shakespeare every day, twice a day, 365 days a year.
Until recently, the current methods were the best available. Today, however, regulators throughout the world are exploring new strategies for leveraging digitization and artificial intelligence to do their work better, faster, and cheaper, all at once.
This conversion will take time but is urgent, driven by the need for regulators to keep pace with the technology transformation of the markets they oversee. The Regtech Manifesto lays out what a “digitally-native” regulatory system will look like and how to build it. The paper is a Request for Comment (RFC), inviting input from the entire regulatory community.