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Powering Better Portfolios through Technology and Data

Investment Technology as a Service Banner

Innovation for today’s most critical investment challenges

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Investment professionals around the world are accelerating advances in technology and data science to generate alpha, serve clients and expand the frontiers of innovative investing.

MSCI’s solutions help investors harness and leverage new technology and data to build better portfolios for a better world. That includes collecting and processing enormous datasets that span investment disciplines, as well as marrying quantitative analysis, research and modeling with technology that helps investors make more informed decisions, navigate a rapidly changing landscape and bring new ideas to market. Investors turn to our solutions to help them:

  • Analyze sources of risk and return
  • Create multi-asset-class portfolios and investment products that capture market opportunities
  • Harness investment benchmarks and select securities to advance their strategies
  • Understand the portfolio implications of climate change and the resilience of companies to long-term ESG risks
  • Deepen insight into factor investing
  • Elevate transparency and improve reporting

The Financial Industry’s Technological Transformation video

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The Investment Industry’s Technological Transformation

Jigar Thakkar, MSCI’s Chief Technology Officer and Head of Engineering, shares how advancements in technology are impacting investors.

Download Transcript (PDF, 121 KB)

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Jigar Thakkar Quote

Our Mission

The challenge for investors of synthesizing large amounts of data to balance performance, risk, sustainability and climate considerations is becoming exponentially more complicated. The way to solve it will be by being at the leading edge of innovation in technology and data.

Jigar Thakkar, Chief Technology Officer and Head of Engineering

Delivering on Vision of MSCI Investment Solutions as a Service

Turning technology and data into true intelligence

MSCI technology and data help investors solve some of their most important investment problems. We calculate more than 267,000 indexes daily, including over 15,000 in real time. Investors also draw each day on our nearly 50 years of historical data for equities, factors and fixed income, together with more than 30 years of historical ESG data. Our data ecosystem leverages Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform, which offers enormous computing power for analyzing data at scale.

Powering Portfolios with True Intelligence 

MSCI Investment Solutions as a Service 

MSCI’s Investment Solutions as a Service (ISaaS) leverages next-generation technologies, big data and advanced analytics to help investors address critical strategic and investment challenges and respond at speed to a rapidly changing global investment landscape. Built in Microsoft’s Azure cloud, Investment Solutions as a Service delivers advanced capabilities in quantitative investment research in a modern architecture and experience. Here are some of the ways investors are using the platform to better understand their portfolios.

Climate Lab  Company

  • Climate Lab  Company

  • Data Explorer 

  • Developer Community

  • Index Builder

MSCIClimate Lab Companyis used by investment managers seeking to construct climate-aligned portfolios. The platform combines leading-edge climate data and analysis to provide a robust view of potential climate-related financial impacts and actionable insights across listed companies. Investors use Climate Lab Companyto:

  • Visualize the forecast trajectory of companies’ emissions in the coming decades.
  • Explore the depth of climate data and scenario analysis from MSCI ESG Research.
  • Drill down into climate risks and opportunities by issuer, sector or peer set.
  • Identify emissions leaders and laggards; compare performance and progress.
  • Explore transition and physical risks by issuer; map exposure to physical risks for both current and projected scenarios.

Powering Better Portfolios through Technology and Data (4)

Data Explorer puts our data directly into investors’ hands to power better decision-making. It offers data scientists, analysts, developers, and product managers access to MSCI data, enabling them to construct and analyze portfolios, enhance strategies and get the most insight with the least effort at every stage of the investment process.

  • Search, discover and download nearly 250 sample datasets that power MSCI’s solutions for equities, factors, fixed income, climate and ESG investing.
  • Access nearly 50 years of historical data on equities, factors, fixed income, together with data for more than 30 years of ESG investing.
  • Explore new datasets for asset location, interest-rate curves, single-security analytics, volatility surfaces and quality reviews.
  • Discover and access data directly from the cloud.
  • Store and access your firm’s MSCI data subscriptions, obtain metadata and other details, and share data among analysts and developers.
  • Obtain recommendations for datasets based on your searches.

Launch Data Explorer

Powering Better Portfolios through Technology and Data (5)

(Video) Powering a Better Future with ESG Data and AI

Developer Community is a searchable directory of MSCI’s application programming interfaces (APIs). It’s designed to power better investment decisions by making APIs available to developers, data scientists and quantitative managers. It aims to help speed their work, improve offerings, go to market sooner, and grow and scale businesses.

  • Search, explore, learn and try APIs from MSCI to support a range of applications and use cases for index, fixed income, ESG and climate, and real estate investing.
  • Create your own investment applications or use API orchestration to integrate front- and back-office applications into a single offering.
  • Access REST- based APIs for MSCI’s risk-factor models and analytics for portfolio construction.
  • Leverage downloadable code snippets to speed set-up, improve collaboration, jump-start projects and build.

Launch Developer Community

Powering Better Portfolios through Technology and Data (6)

Investors are increasingly using indexes in new ways, from personalizing investment strategies to delivering innovative products and identifying the massive shifts driving long-term megatrends.

To meet this demand, we created Index Builder. This tool gives asset owners, investment managers and product sponsors the ability to design, simulate and analyze index strategies, and license MSCI custom indexes - in three simple steps.

  • Design - Design indexes that reflect your own investment idea by applying our market leading frameworks and building-block methodologies across Climate, ESG, Factor, Thematic and Market Cap exposures.
  • Simulate and Analyze - Backtest your strategy by simulating historical index performance and comparing index characteristics including returns, exposures and investability measures.
  • License - Bring your idea to market by simply clicking to license the MSCI custom index that reflects your preferred simulation.

Index Builder is currently in development and we plan to make it available to clients in 2022.

Powering Better Portfolios through Technology and Data (7)

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Featured content

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Sizzler Video

ISaaS Overview

The video highlights how the pairing of MSCI technology and data with Microsoft’s Azure Cloud and AI is helping institutional investors deepen insight, navigate a changing landscape and build better portfolios for a better world.

Reimagining technology for investors

Reimagining Technology for Investors

Next-generation technologies are broadening the boundaries of global investing. Members of MSCI’s technology and data team share some of the ways we use technological innovation to help clients reduce complexity, capitalize on opportunities and solve their most pressing investment problems.

(Video) The BEST Crypto Portfolio For 2023 (Prepping for a Bull Market)

Featured Videos

Harnessing Technology to Help Solve Investment Challenges Clients' needs are as diverse as their strategies. We strive to meet them by leveraging the cloud, AI and other next-generation technologies that make it easy for clients to integrate our solutions into their investment processes.Watch the Video
Technology and Data for Taking Climate Change Considerations into Account We are harnessing technology and data to drive transparency that helps clients measure and compare company climate targets, visualize climate risk, and make sustainability part of their long-term strategies.Watch the Video
Deepening Insight into Risk and Return Our performance and risk applications give clients deep insight into drivers of risk and return across asset classes and portfolios.Watch the Video
Accelerating Insight and Discovery through Data Clients leverage the richness of our data and power of our analytical tools to generate actionable insights, enhance decision-making and fuel discovery.Watch the Video
Bringing Clients New Capabilities Through Technology MSCI combines industry leading data, quantitative analysis, research and modeling with technology that equips clients to deepen understanding and confront a rapidly evolving investment landscape.Watch the Video
Putting Clients at the Center of All that We Do Everything we do starts with listening to and engaging with clients to anticipate their needs, capture their feedback and uphold our fundamental mission to deliver solutions that help them make better investment decisions.Watch the Video
A Culture that Delivers for Clients How the talent and diversity of our professionals together with the inclusivity and transparency of our culture help clients stay ahead of transformation to solve their most pressing investment challenges. Watch the Video
Helping Clients Succeed We deliver data, analytical tools, technology and support that help clients build better portfolios and achieve their most ambitious goals. Watch the Video

Related Content

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Climate Lab Enterprise

Powerful data and analytical tools for net-zero investing across portfolios and enterprises.

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Data Explorer

Data Explorer puts our data directly into investors’ hands to help them develop strategies, deepen insight and power better decision-making.

Explore more

Developer Community

Search, explore and sample our APIs to support a range of applications and use cases for index, fixed income, ESG and climate, and real estate investing.

Learn more

Shape the Future

We are a diverse and inclusive team of technologists on a mission to help clients harness the latest technology and data to reduce complexity, capitalize on opportunities and solve their most pressing investment problems. Join us on this journey.

Explore careers

Jigar Thakkar's Biography

Jigar Thakkar is responsible for leading MSCI’s engineering technology services, development efforts and data science operations. Mr. Thakkar joined MSCI in July 2018 from Microsoft, where he served for 19 years in a series of senior engineering leadership roles.

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Nexus Conference

How next-generation technology will solve today’s most important investment challenges.

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Why is a portfolio approach to innovation so important? ›

Innovation portfolios also allow to spread risks by diversifying innovation investment activities. It acknowledges that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to innovation, and requires the innovation process to be continuously tracked, assessed and explored to be fit for purpose.

What are the advantages to taking a portfolio approach to it? ›

IT portfolio management is a systematic approach of planning and organizing projects, activities, initiatives, and investments in a company's IT department, ensuring growth, cost reduction, and business continuity. It enables you to manage your resources and infrastructure and govern your IT investments objectively.

What are the five major factors to consider when building an international information systems portfolio? ›

Implementation of Information System: 5 Factors
  • Factor # 1. Strategy:
  • Factor # 2. Revenue & Expense:
  • Factor # 3. Quality:
  • Factor # 4. Impact on Individual:
  • Factor # 5. Impact on Organisation:
  • Factor # 6. Distribution of Power:

What is portfolio approach in strategic management? ›

Strategic portfolio management is all about making difficult decisions around which projects or initiatives should be pursued, which should be abandoned, and where resources can be unlocked or freed up to spend on programs or investments that better align with a company's strategic goals.

What are the three key factors to success with portfolio management? ›

Key Success Factors when implementing Portfolio Management
  • Align process with maturity level. ...
  • Keep it very simple. ...
  • Adapt in real time, rather than force fit. ...
  • Avoid "static" strategic planning.
Jun 21, 2019

What are the three keys to successful project portfolio management? ›

To be successful with project portfolio management, you should have common procedures, applications, and training for the effective sharing of relevant information for portfolio analysis, decision making, goal setting, project status, project prioritization/ranking, and consumed and available resource capacity.

What is the main goal of portfolio? ›

The fundamental objective of portfolio management is to help select best investment options as per one's income, age, time horizon and risk appetite. Nonetheless, to make the most of portfolio management, investors should opt for a management type that suits their investment pattern.

What is the main purpose of portfolio? ›

A portfolio is a living and changing collection of records that reflect your accomplishments, skills, experiences, and attributes. It highlights and showcases samples of some of your best work, along with life experiences, values and achievements.

What are the three elements of portfolio strategy? ›

Portfolio Management is about the Big Picture view that sets the objective criteria for identifying, ranking, positioning and selecting new application and change delivery projects. PPM has three elements that are critical to application delivery: Collaboration, ForeSight and Risk Management.

What are the 5 components of information systems technology? ›

5 Components of Information Systems
  • Computer hardware. This is the physical technology that works with information. ...
  • Computer software. The hardware needs to know what to do, and that is the role of software. ...
  • Telecommunications. ...
  • Databases and data warehouses. ...
  • Human resources and procedures.

What is portfolio in technology management? ›

Portfolio management refers to the strategic administration and organization of projects within a business. Portfolio managers focus on elements such as project budgets, resource use, and timelines when making decisions. IT portfolio management focuses solely on the IT department's projects and teams.

What are 5 things a great portfolio includes? ›

What Should My Portfolio Contain?
  • Table of Contents.
  • Career and professional development goals, tailored for each interviewer.
  • Work philosophy statement; personal mission statement.
  • List of areas of expertise.
  • Works in progress (activities and projects)

What are the 2 methods of optimizing portfolio? ›

Portfolio optimization often takes place in two stages: optimizing weights of asset classes to hold, and optimizing weights of assets within the same asset class.

How can I improve my portfolio? ›

10 Tips to Improve Your Portfolio
  1. Brand Yourself - give your portfolio a brand, make a logo for yourself and use it on every page throughout your portfolio.
  2. Use White Space - make sure your portfolio is not too cluttered, give each project enough room to breathe.
  3. Be Selective - don't put too many projects in.
Jun 15, 2020

What is the most important aspect of portfolio management? ›

The primary objective behind managing the portfolio is to enjoy capital appreciation. Therefore, the principal amount invested should grow into a corpus at a higher rate than inflation. Furthermore, it should also minimize the risks of investment.

What are the six steps to effective portfolio management? ›

  1. Step 1: Formulate Lean Portfolio Strategy and Derive Strategic Themes. ...
  2. Step 2: Develop and Communicate Portfolio Vision. ...
  3. Step 3: Identify Epics Required to Achieve Vision. ...
  4. Step 4: Establish the Portfolio Kanban. ...
  5. Step 5: Setup Portfolio Events. ...
  6. Step 6: Measure and Grow.

What is the portfolio approach? ›

Taking a portfolio approach means recognizing that there might not be one single fiber, material, or program that meets all requirements or business needs, and that a company's selection might change over time.

What is a portfolio based approach? ›

Build a portfolio of stocks or ETFs around a specific idea, theme or model. This portfolio-based approach reduces the risks associated with equity investments and allows the investor to benefit from the upside potential. And to further mitigate risks, an investor can also consider investing in other asset classes.

What are the types of portfolio management approaches? ›

  • Active Portfolio Management. The aim of the active portfolio manager is to make better returns than what the market dictates. ...
  • Passive Portfolio Management. ...
  • Discretionary Portfolio Management. ...
  • Non-Discretionary Portfolio Management.

What is an example of portfolio management? ›

Example of Portfolio Management

Say the investor has Rs 1,00,000 to start with and the manager has to distribute this across the different investment options. So the portfolio manager according to the risk-taking capacity and the kind of returns calculated provides a portfolio structured in tandem with that.


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