The Australian Securities Exchange’s (ASX) upgrade to distributed ledger technology is costing members millions of dollars, according to Judith Fox, CEO of the Stockbrokers and Financial Advisers Association (SAFAA).
Australia’s largest exchange and seventh in terms of global turnover, the ASX is looking to overhaul its outdated Clearing House Electronic Subregister System (CHESS) with a blockchain-based system, designed to speed up clearing and settlement.
The upgrade, planned for 2022-23, has the ASX on track to become the world’s first exchange to use blockchain in its clearing system, despite still remaining in its testing phase.
However, the SAFAA, an independent stockbroking and investment advice association, has critiqued the costs being placed on members to adjust to the upgrade.
Fox said: “Many of our members are spending millions of dollars in order to be able to interact with the new distributed ledger technology that the ASX is implementing.
“The investment required to operate in global markets is getting more and more intense.”
In response, an ASX spokesperson said that while upgrading would result in some costs, these costs would need to be determined by members.
“Customers have choice about how they wish to interact with the new CHESS system,” the spokesperson said.
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