UK investment banks point to in-memory analytics to tackle big data

Big data is increasingly being seen as a significant problem by the UK’s investment banks, where 67 percent believe that in-memory analytics will be the predominant architecture deployed within the next three years to help tackle it.

According to research carried out by Quartet FS, which surveyed IT managers and systems architects across the UK’s financial institutions, 55 percent of respondents stated that big data is a ‘very significant problem’, with a further 20 percent admitting it is ‘extremely significant’.

Some 47 percent of respondents indicated that the volume of data is the main challenge to IT departments; with 37 percent pointing to the velocity of data; and 17 percent to the variety.

The increasing amount of data being made available to banks, coupled with the speed that it is provided and the desire to conduct real-time analytics to reduce latency, is driving the move towards in-memory analytics.

A quarter of institutions surveyed already use in-memory computing to overcome these problems, with a further 50 percent intending to adopt it in the next two years.

In-memory software can improve data analytics by a factor of 14,000. So, a request can now take just one second, where it previously took five hours.

The increase in speed is gained by putting data analytics into a CPU, into ‘memory’, as opposed to being carried out on disk. Queries sent to on-disk databases take longer because of the mechanical interaction that has to take place, which is removed when being conducted in-memory.

The report found that in-memory tools are likely to be deployed in four main areas of the business: the front office, market risk management, credit valuation adjustment and client reporting.

“With the majority of the UK’s investment banks still relying on spreadsheets to analyse their data, it’s no surprise that they are struggling with the ‘Three Vs’ of big data: Volume, Velocity and Variety,” said Georges Bory, co-founder and managing director of Quartet FS.

“It seems however that we are at a tipping point within the financial services industry with in-memory analytics evolving from discussion to widespread adoption over the coming years.”

Copyright © 2012 IDG Communications, Inc.

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