New specification to help filter the flow of research

The latest consortium-led XML standard for the financial services industry goes public., a consortium of  buy- and sell-side financial industry leaders formed last October,  has released version 1.0 of its new RIXML specification, designed as an open, global standard for the tagging and delivery of investment research.

RIXML (Research Information eXchange Markup Language) will provide a structure for classifying research in a way that enables clients to define specific sorting, filtering and personalization criteria across all research publishers. RIXML version 1.0 will be available for public comment over the next 30 days and feedback can be provided through the new website, RIXML, as its name suggests, is based on XML, the emerging global standard for data sharing between internet applications.

"The release of an initial RIXML specification reflects a broad consensus within the industry on what needs to be done to facilitate the process of electronic research distribution," says RIXML Steering Committee Co-chair David Seibert of US-based fund manager T. Rowe Price.

 "RIXML will enable sell-side research publishers to tag any piece of research content, in any media format, with enough information for buy-side firms to create customized filters that truly put an intelligent throttle on the fire hose of information currently being distributed. In addition, the advanced level of tagging and access to individual research elements allows for a new generation of alerting mechanisms, enhanced user interfaces, and delivery to mobile devices."

Feedback received during the 30-day comment period will be reviewed by and will be incorporated into the current specification, or addressed in subsequent releases. The formal RIXML Specification Version 1.0 is expected to be released after the comment period and can be used in proof-of-concept trials with research producers and institutional users.

The consortium says it is focused first on creating a standard for equity research, but longer-term is considering developing standards for other categories of investment research, such as debt, foreign exchange and commodity securities. expects to begin focusing on version 2.0 of the specification later this year.

To help widen participation in the initiative, has also added an Associate Membership category to its structure. This membership category will enable additional buy-side and sell-side firms, as well as third party service providers, consulting firms, technology providers and others to have an impact on the evolution of the RIXML standard by participating in the Standards and Technical Committees of the organization.

"Since our formal launch announcement last October, a number of firms have expressed interest in joining from across the industry," explains Standards Committee Co-chair Chris Betz of Morgan Stanley Dean Witter.

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