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Australian stock exchange firm develops blockchain

07 Décembre 2017

The Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) is to turn to the distributed ledger technology to underpin its new system when it upgrades CHESS, the current ageing technology that it uses.

The decision will mean that Australia becomes the global market to adopt the technology, in order to record shareholdings and manage the clearing and settlement of equity transactions in Australia.

It dates back to the 1990s and is now still in use by the exchange.

ASX has conducted several demonstrations and workshops over the last two years, which it said confirmed confidence in the "functional, capacity, security and resilience capabilities of Digital Asset's application of DLT".

"We support the ASX's commitment to designing a system that does not raise barriers to access for non-affiliated market operators and clearing and settlement facilities", he said in a statement.

Day 1 transition is scheduled for late March in 2018.

The ASX announced in June 2016 that it was building a new post-trade solution using blockchain technology, asking for market feedback.

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The ASX reports the decision was made following a successful build of an enterprise grade platform using DLT for core equity clearing and trade settlement. It also makes ASX one of the world's first big global stock exchange to formally commit to the new technology. The timing of its final implementation would depend on consultation with stakeholders.

ASX chief executive Dominic Stevens said the move to distributed ledger technology - also known as blockchain - will "put Australia at the forefront of innovation in financial markets".

"After so much hype surrounding distributed ledger technology, today's announcement delivers the first meaningful proof that the technology can live up to its potential", he says.

The bank's head of blockchain has revealed the Commonwealth Bank is now implementing with a large world issuer in what will be a "world-first" issuance of a bond on the blockchain that it hopes to bring to market in 2018.

While blockchain technology is considered to uncrackable, the risks have been highlighted after Bitcoin mining marketplace NiceHash lost at least $60m this week when it was hacked.

Dominic Stevens, managing director and CEO of ASX, commented: "ASX has been carefully examining distributed ledger technology for nearly two-and-a-half years, including the last two years with Digital Asset, in order to understand its potential application".

Australian stock exchange firm develops blockchain