Who are our clients?

Thomas Murray has worked with a wide range of global institutional investors including asset managers, central banks, insurance companies, private and public sector pension funds, wealth managers, family offices, foundations and sovereign wealth funds, ranging in size from £0.5 billion (€0.6 billion or $0.75 billion) to over £2 trillion (€2.4 trillion or $3 trillion) of assets under management or custody.

We have successfully managed over 450 projects in Australasia, Europe, Africa and North America. The projects have involved over £5.5 trillion of assets for the procurement, benchmarking and monitoring of third-party services including custody, fund administration, collateral management, hedge fund administration and OTC derivative clearing members.

Thomas Murray has provided clients with analyses based on proven methodologies and industry experience to enable them to successfully drive down costs and reduce risk exposure. Clients have used Thomas Murray's ongoing monitoring programme to ensure that those costs and risks are continually assessed and reviewed.

How do we help our clients?

  • By identifying and reducing the costs and risks associated with the ownership and management of invested assets
  • By ensuring that our clients select the best service provider for their needs and that they receive value for money on an on-going basis
  • By helping our clients meet their fiduciary, governance and regulatory responsibilities to monitor third-party service providers
  • By keeping our clients up-to-date about the latest relevant industry developments through our regular Thomas Murray Newsletter

Case Study One

As part of a review of the fees that a major public sector pension fund was paying to a global custodian bank for custody and related value added services, Thomas Murray benchmarked the cost of those services against a peer group benchmark. Using the analysis to negotiate with its bank, the client was able to reduce the annual cost by 66%.

Case Study Two

A corporate pension scheme asked Thomas Murray to evaluate the cost of its foreign exchange execution by its service provider as it felt that charges were opaque and possibly higher than reasonable. Thomas Murray’s analysis revealed that the overall cost of FX execution was substantially higher than a customised benchmark suggested it should be. The service provider was asked to re-submit a pricing proposal and offered a contractually agreed spread that was 33% lower irrespective of transaction size or volumes. This represented a significant potential annual saving, although negotiations continued to explore the possibility of further reductions as the originally offered reduction remained higher than the customised benchmark.

Case Study Three

Thomas Murray analysed the FX transactions costs of a major private sector pension fund. The initial analysis revealed that the fund had paid an average spread of approximately four times the benchmark. In the full year following the implementation of Thomas Murray’s ongoing monitoring programme, the cost of FX execution fell by three-quarters, where it remains today.

Case Study Four

As part of a review of a large corporate pension fund’s arrangements, Thomas Murray identified that a global custodian bank had made significant errors in its fee billing over a period of a year that the client had not spotted. Additionally, Thomas Murray’s analysis of the client’s FX execution led to the client questioning the pricing of a large value trade where the service provider had applied an excessive margin. Once raised, the service provider made immediate rectifying action.

Case Study Five

Thomas Murray undertook a review of the commercial terms of a contractual arrangement for a corporate pension fund. It was found that the existing arrangement had been in place for a relative long period of time and no longer reflected current best market practice. This meant that the client was exposed to a greater level of operational and financial risk than was necessary. Thomas Murray was engaged to negotiate a revision of the commercial terms with the service provider and achieved a significant reduction in the client's risk exposure.

Why use Thomas Murray?

  • Unique - Thomas Murray provides objective and independent opinion based on current market data
  • Explicit cost savings - over 70% of clients, that do not formally review their arrangements periodically, pay too much for custody and related services compared to the current market rate
  • Hidden cost savings - over 50% of clients, that do not monitor FX costs, pay excessive spreads on foreign exchange
  • Risk management - in 90% of cases examined by Thomas Murray, service provider contracts are deficient in some way and expose clients to unnecessary asset safety and asset servicing risks
  • Project management - clients can focus their resources on their core business
  • Perspective - we are able to combine local market expertise with a global perspective on best market practices
  • Risk management - “know your outsourcing provider”- monitor and manage financial, operational, asset servicing and asset safety risks
  • Operational effectiveness - service providers that are monitored regularly (and know they are monitored) perform better