New tool for measuring climate risk in municipal bonds emerges from stealth
BOSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--risQ, Inc., a Boston headquartered start-up focused on best-in-class climate risk analytics, today announced a relationship with Intercontinental Exchange (NYSE:ICE) to help enable the municipal bond ecosystem to incorporate climate risk into project and investment decisions.
Combining cutting-edge climate science, catastrophe modeling and geospatial machine learning technology, risQ has developed a comprehensive analytics platform capable of analyzing climate risk for all obligors and issuers of municipal bonds, delivering financially quantitative output across the key climate risks. Critically, the analytics are agile across all maturities, obligors and boundaries, from the largest counties and school districts, to the smallest utilities and development districts, and across the most complex hospital systems and transport authorities.
risQ worked with a range of industry insiders and beta partners during the last 12 months to prototype municipal bond climate risk analytics and tools and optimize them to their needs. As part of the collaboration, risQ will exclusively provide ICE Data Services with its actionable climate data to connect to municipal security-level information, allowing analysis and comparison from specific securities to entire portfolios. This will be offered as an integrated service with ICE Data Services’ leading municipal pricing and reference data, offering a new tool to quantitatively measure climate risk in municipal bonds.
“We have been targeting a scientifically rigorous climate risk analytics platform to enable informed decisions from the day we founded the company. The municipal debt sector emerged as an underserved $4 trillion market to target for our initial product,” said Dr. Evan Kodra, CEO of risQ. “With their breadth and depth of data offerings and reach into the global financial markets, ICE is a natural partner for us.”
“By applying geospatial climate data to specific municipalities and securities, risQ has created a ground-breaking data product that leverages our strengths in the fixed income markets,” said Mark Heckert, Chief Product Officer at ICE Data Services. “These new capabilities enable us to offer a unique product that helps market participants better manage climate risk as part of their overall investing and risk management processes.”
Commenting on the announcement from his broad and deep perspective on the industry, Tom Doe, CEO of Municipal Market Analytics (MMA) only sees it as a positive for the market. “MMA has prided itself on providing thought leadership to the municipal bond sector for over two decades, and climate risk is increasingly coming to the forefront of our thinking,” said Doe. “risQ and ICE working together is as timely as it is critical.”
ICE Data Services and risQ plan to launch the municipal climate package by the end of the first quarter of 2020.
risQ, Inc. is a Boston headquartered start-up founded with the mission to catalyze and inform systems-level adaptation to climate change. Spun out of Northeastern University's Sustainability and Data Sciences (SDS) Lab in 2016, and funded by the National Science Foundation, risQ helps asset owners and investors quantify the complex financial risks posed by climate change. Via a unique combination of cutting-edge climate, catastrophe and geospatial modeling sciences, risQ characterizes and translates climate risk in actionable data and insights tailored for the financial services sector.
About Intercontinental Exchange
Intercontinental Exchange (NYSE: ICE) is a Fortune 500 company formed in the year 2000 to modernize markets. ICE serves customers by operating the exchanges, clearing houses and information services they rely upon to invest, trade and manage risk across global financial and commodity markets. A leader in market data, ICE Data Services serves the information and connectivity needs across virtually all asset classes. As the parent company of the New York Stock Exchange, the company is the premier venue for raising capital in the world, driving economic growth and transforming markets.
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Safe Harbor Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 -- Statements in this press release regarding ICE's business that are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties. For a discussion of additional risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see ICE's Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filings, including, but not limited to, the risk factors in ICE's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2018, as filed with the SEC on February 7, 2019.
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