Over the past few years, the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA), the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) and the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) have worked to modernise Australia’s financial sector data.
The increased volume of reporting changes has resulted in many of the banks in Sydney to rethink their regulatory reporting setup. Across almost all banks within Australia, there have now been dedicated projects set up to assess the impact and implications of EFS and how best to apply it to each individual organisation.
The proposed collection involves the restructuring of a number of forms to improve the grouping of related concepts – for example, collecting data on housing loans to investors and owner-occupiers on the same form. Following industry feedback, changes have also been made to one of the larger reporting forms (ARF 320.0 Statement of Financial Position (Domestic Books) (ARF 320.0) / RRF 320.0 Statement of Financial Position (RFCs) (RRF 320.0)): the form has been redesigned to facilitate more targeted ownership and review by business units. These changes should improve reporting consistency and the ease of verification and reconciliation.
With the changes in place, this has made candidates with strong APRA and regulatory reporting background a hot commodity within the banking world. I have seen the number of Regulatory Reporting Accountant roles on my desk more than double in the last six months with no signs of slowing down.
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What are the benefits of EFS?
More reliable data to inform economic research and policymaking. Improved reporting instructions and form structuring, guidance documents and quality standard will increase the certainty of reporting institutions about the requirements for the data submitted. In turn, this will improve data quality and enhance the ABS and RBA’s confidence in the data submitted. This will enable policymakers to more confidently make decisions based on these data, reducing the risk that decisions are based on false signals, or that required policy actions are delayed because there is uncertainty over whether the signal is accurate. The ability of policymakers to make decisions based on timely and accurate information is of benefit to all Australians. More specifically of interest to reporting institutions, the new collection will contribute to a better informed, and therefore more sound, the policy environment for industry to operate in. It will also enable a review of published data, such as in APRA’s Monthly Banking Statistics, which offers the potential for the publication of more information that is indispensable to the industry in running financial services businesses.
Who is affected by the changes?
Looking for people with these skills?
If you have these skills I’d love to talk to you! If you are a client looking for these skill sets, I also have a number of strong candidates available.