Machine learning and big data

Big data

A few posts ago, I wrote about the impact of the ‘Findustrial Revolution’ on the financial community. According to McKinsey, there are now 20,000 FinTech companies in New York and London alone.

This seems to be driven by a confluence of events: tougher regulation, massive pressure on cost, newer technologies and thousands of technologists leaving the incumbent banks full of ideas, money and time to disrupt the old model.

Do regulators control or encourage these changes? Does innovation make the financial system better and safer, or more risky?

Several governments are making concerted efforts to attract and encourage more of this activity in their countries, with the UK, US, Israel and Japan leading the charge.

The ‘Findustrial Revolution’ is no longer a question of ‘if’ but a question of ‘when and how.’ (more…)

A global information and intelligence platform to combat modern day slavery


This week Thomson Reuters unveils a potential new weapon in the fight against modern day slavery. We are inviting the community of anti-slavery organizations to work with us to create a global information and intelligence sharing platform.

The International Labour Organization estimates forced labour is a $150 billion industry which enslaves some 21 million people.

The reputational risk to companies unwittingly exposed to slavery in their supply chain is now added to a real legal risk. At our anti-slavery seminar this week, attended by more than 170 people, I sat with Kevin Hyland, the UK’s anti-slavery commissioner and therefore the chief enforcer of the Modern Slavery Act. The Act requires firms to report formally on how they are seeking to combat slavery across their supply chains. And since those supply chains routinely span countries and continents the Act has global reach.


Investing in blockchain technology start-up Fluent


In the latest in a series of collaborations with external organizations (such as with IBM Watson, Samsung, and our Thomson Reuters Labs – Waterloo Region), we have recently announced a sponsorship and investment in Fluent, a financial technology start-up that offers a cloud-based financial transaction network.

Fluent enables real-time, low-cost, simple and secure invoicing and payments along global supply chains via blockchain technology.

The use of blockchain technology and bitcoin, or digital currency for financial transactions online, is relatively new. Bitcoin provides real-time, instant payment in the cloud versus the traditional transaction payment methods through banks or other institutions that can take up to three days.

Bitcoin uses cryptography to provide a virtual, secure payment method that bypasses central authorities like banks and international borders. Blockchain technology is the virtual “ledger” that manages bitcoin transfers, providing faster and more secure payments over the cloud. While there’s some debate around its use, many businesses and companies are exploring the use of digital currency and blockchain technology.

This partnership with Fluent bolsters our efforts to explore the potential of bitcoin and blockchain technology for our products and customers. Scott Manuel, head of Product Management & Delivery, Advanced Product Innovation, tells us more: (more…)

It’s all about collaboration

It’s a cliché to say that technology is changing rapidly, and changing the world with it. And yet there seems to be no better way to express what’s happening these days in business. Every sector find themselves increasingly called upon to understand and implement new technologies. For them, it’s about seeing the world in a new way, embracing change, and taking steps to make sure they’re not left behind in today’s information economy.

At Thomson Reuters, our partners are playing a pivotal part in that transformation. (more…)

Louisiana federal judge retains jurisdiction over DePuy knee implant suit

From Westlaw Journal Expert and Scientific Evidence:

A woman’s suit alleging she was implanted with a defective prosthetic knee and DePuy Orthopaedics bone cement will remain before a Louisiana federal judge, who says the plaintiff lacks a viable claim against the in-state medical device distributor she named as a co-defendant.

U.S. District Judge Eldon E. Fallon of the Eastern District of Louisiana denied plaintiff Cynthia Brown’s motion to remand her suit to state court, noting that distributor Mark Starring & Associates Inc. had no duty under state law to warn her of possible defects in the cement or accompanying prosthetic knee.

(Westlaw users: Click here for the 10 most recent stories from Westlaw Journals.) (more…)

Working for Generation Open

Open Data Institute

Trust is at the heart of being open

Trust is a core value for Thomson Reuters. We don’t say this just because it sounds good, it’s something that is baked deep into our culture. The Trust Principles were established in 1941 in the midst of the Second World War as an obligation for employees ‘to act at all times with integrity, independence and freedom from bias.’

This year’s Open Data Institute Summit was for Generation Open, the ‘innovators and entrepreneurs, customers and citizens, students and parents who embrace network thinking.’ For us at Thomson Reuters, this feels a natural fit. Trust is at the heart of being open, and we really value our partnership with the ODI and the work they are doing to champion open data, which supports our own work in this area. (more…)

Message to sports chiefs: stamp out bribery or lose your sponsors


This week suspended FIFA president Sepp Blatter made some jaw-dropping revelations to Russia’s Tass news agency about how the World Cup bidding process was run. But football’s sponsors will also have noted this observation from Blatter:

“You cannot destroy FIFA,” he said. “FIFA is not the Swiss bank. FIFA is not a commercial company.”

This follows hard on the heels of comments from Formula 1 chief Bernie Ecclestone, who defended Blatter on Russian TV, claiming corruption should be considered as a tax that has to be paid: (more…)

Searching for answers to a sustainable planet


We caught up with Tim Nixon, director and managing editor of our Sustainability site about our new multimedia report “7 Reasons The World Will Be Sustainable.”

The feature provides pathways for success following the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit 2015, when the world focused its attention on 17 goals for the earth’s changing climate, natural resources distribution and prosperity.

What do you love about your job?

Connecting the dots. So many sustainability issues link together legal, financial, scientific and social issues. I love seeing how the different levers in these domains can influence and help each other. I also love talking with students about sustainability, and see their passion for plunging into this complex set of issues in search of solutions.

What does this report help to explain? (more…)

Income-based auto insurance pricing: The trigger for the FIO’s use of subpoena power

Judge and gavel in courtroom

In a recent comment letter to the U.S. Federal Insurance Office (FIO) issued on July 2, 2015, around 50 state and national consumer groups advocated the idea of income-based pricing for auto insurance premiums.

The letter brings a consumer perspective to issues that could pose significant changes to the auto insurance market. Besides the potential changes that pertain to the price of auto insurance for low- and moderate-income (LMI) drivers, the very nature of income-based auto insurance pricing is also the likely trigger for the FIO’s first use of subpoena power. Such use is likely to be the greatest exercise of federal power in the property and casualty marketplace in recent history. (more…)

China’s golden era – of interconnectivity

China's President Xi Jinping and Britain's Prince Philip review an honour guard during his official welcoming ceremony in London, Britain

China dominated the headlines in the UK this week. As its president, Xi Jinping, arrived in London with all the pomp of a state visit, the media turned its focus on how and why China was now being considered a strategic trade partner for the UK, with some £40 billion worth of deals signed during the visit.

Before Premier Xi’s visit, the UK Government keenly briefed journalists on the dawn of “a golden era” of cooperation between the two countries. And at a dinner at London’s Guildhall, where the Premier spoke warmly of Britain and its culture, I heard for myself a speech which contained more emotion and affection than the usual statesmanship expected of a visiting dignitary.

China is indeed entering a golden era, though not exclusively with the UK, and not perhaps in quite the way the Government intends. It is a golden era of interconnectivity, as the country creates myriad links to the world’s financial systems. For instance it was interesting how many delegates attended from Canada.

This interconnectivity includes information networks, of course, and just a few weeks ago I saw for myself in Shanghai how busily the financial sector was forging these vital connections. Such links will help them to attract foreign investment for their businesses and to import goods for their growing middle class, as well as maintaining their thriving exports. (more…)