Markit, a provider of independent data, portfolio valuations and OTC derivatives trade processing, has opened an office in Sydney, its first in Australia and its third in the Asia-Pacific region.

'The Asia Pacific region is key to our expansion plans, and we are seeing a surge in demand for our pricing and valuation services in the area,' says David Crammond, chief executive of Markit Asia.

'Financial regulators around the world are very much focused on the need for accurate, independent valuations, and this focus has sharpened with the credit crisis. A presence in Australia will enable Markit to capitalise on this demand and will allow us to be closer to our clients in the region.'

Markit provides both sell-side and buy-side firms with valuation services. Its Totem service provides major market-makers in over-the-counter derivatives with an independent check for their trading book valuations, and covers vanilla and exotic instruments in the equity, interest rate, currency, commodity, structured credit and bond markets.

Markit's Portfolio Valuations service draws on a proprietary dataset to provide buy-side firms with an independent post-trade calculation of the gross asset value of a portfolio of trades, enabling clients to establish a fund's net asset value.

Euan Johns will lead Markit's Australian operations as director. He previously worked on the Totem service in London for five years and will now focus on the Totem Interest Rate Swap service for the Asia Pacific region.

He is joined by Ross Allen, who will be responsible for the Totem Equities service for the region, and Andrew King who will head marketing and local support for current and new clients. Both Allen and King have also relocated from Markit's London headquarters.


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