Research

Geopolitical risk surges to record high

By James Langton |

Cybersecurity remains the top risk to financial stability across global financial industry, according to a risk assessment report published Tuesday by U.S.-based Depository Trust & Clearing Corp. (DTCC).

Cyber risk was named the biggest threat by 36% of respondents to DTCC's latest systemic risk barometer survey.

"Cyber risk continues to intensify across all sectors of the financial ecosystem and it's becoming increasingly clear that no area is immune to this threat," says Michael Leibrock, chief systemic risk officer, DTCC, in a statement. "As a result, it is critical that firms prepare response plans, maintain playbooks and practice cyber-attack simulations as key components of their risk management efforts."

Geopolitical risk ranks as the number two overall risk for the coming year, the report notes, with 69% of respondents including it in their top five risks for the year ahead. This represents an all-time high, and is a jump of 17 percentage points since the last survey. The report also indicates that just over 20% of respondents view geopolitical risk as the top overall risk facing financial markets for the year ahead.

Fintech risk, which was included in the survey for the first time, was cited as a "significant source of risk" by 15% of respondents, the report says.

"While fintech is generally recognized as holding great promise, these results demonstrate a growing awareness of potential emerging risks, highlighting the need to evaluate both risks and rewards associated with fintech initiatives," DTCC says in its announcement.