Many financial institutions across the country are enjoying the benefits of the Federal Reserve Banks’ FedTransaction Analyzer tool since its introduction over a year ago. The tool was designed to help financial institutions aggregate, save and analyze payments transaction data, and assess potential exception activity and trends. The FedTransaction Analyzer tool accomplishes this by capturing and storing some 36 data elements associated with a financial institution’s wire transactions. Reports can be pulled by credentialed users at an institution who have access to an 18 month historical database of Fedwire® Funds Service data.
ServisFirst Bank (Off-site Link), a community bank with 10 branches headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama, began using FedTransaction Analyzer in March, 2012. “We needed to dig deeper into our international wire data than our current spreadsheet analysis enabled us to do,” explains Buzz Fowler, vice president of deposit operations. As ServisFirst’s Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) officer, Fowler was looking for a means to augment the bank’s international wire monitoring approach in order to better analyze trends and emerging issues.
Fowler continues, “Our customer base consists of a significant number of small business and professional clients, many of whom engage in international transactions. By utilizing the FedTransaction Analyzer tool, we are able to proactively monitor this activity, and at a more granular level than we’d been capable of previously.
“Initially, our spreadsheet analysis was adequate, but as our international wire volume continued to grow, we found that the limited data was not sufficient to perform the enhanced review we needed.” Now, ServisFirst analyzes the data captured by FedTransaction Analyzer over a six-to-12 month period to recognize trends in activity carried out by a particular organization or client. The numerous data elements provide enough details for staff to screen international transactions by looking at such fields as beneficiary and originator, their addresses and Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) code, to name a few.
“At this point, we’re using the FedTransaction Analyzer reports to supplement the spreadsheet work we’d been doing previously. The additional data in the reports greatly expands our capabilities in the monitoring process,” explains Fowler. “Eventually, we can see the elimination of the need for the spreadsheet,” he added.
As a FedLine Advantage® customer, it was simply a matter of saying ‘please turn on the service’ when ServisFirst decided to begin use of the FedTransaction Analyzer tool. “No lengthy start up procedure or testing was required,” Fowler says.
He concludes, “Today, we’re using the tool to assist us in monitoring risk, but already I can see potential for using the data we’re mining for other applications and departments as well.”
“We're already enjoying the trend analysis capability it brings to our team, but with the flexibility afforded by the FedTransaction Analyzer tool, we'll soon be finding additional purposes for its reports throughout our organization."
Vice President of Deposit Operations
Address comments and questions to the Financial Services Webmaster.
©2013 Federal Reserve Banks