08 June 2017
Reporter: Stephanie Palmer

RBC and Commcise launch MiFID II-compliant research payment tool

Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) is partnering with Commcise to provide segregated research payment accounts (RPA) for buy side clients, to help them in compliance with the second Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II).

Commcise, a provider of integrated commission management and research evaluation, will provide a neutral and independent technology platform to facilitate management of the research payment process.

RBC will hold the segregated accounts in the names of the individual buy side firms, and will ensure that research payments are made efficiently, quickly, and at the firms’ discretion.

The solution is intended to help buy side clients to accurately track research funding and consumption against budgets, while also ensuring research received is properly evaluated.

Under MiFID II, investment research must be bespoke to each institution, and asset managers must pay for research either with their own funds, or through a separate RPA, which is charged to the client.

Research fees must also be separated from execution and trading fees.

The new rules are designed to improve transparency, and to stop research costs being unfairly passed on to clients.

Graeme Pearson, head of European equities at RBC Capital Markets, commented: “Ensuring an un-conflicted and client-aligned approach is essential. We are therefore setting up a specialist RPA team, managed independently from RBC’s traditional brokerage offering, to ensure the efficient and timely processing of research payment obligations for buy-side clients globally who are looking to address the needs of MIFID II.”

He added: “The Commcise team understand the buy-side challenge and working together, we are providing a completely integrated and, most importantly, transparent RPA solution.”

Amrish Ganatra, CEO at Commcise, added: “This partnership with Royal Bank of Canada leverages the strengths of independence and quality that both firms represent.”

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