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Summary and Comments

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Category: 

Banking

Date: 

1997-05-17 00:00:00

Subject: 

The European Banks' Biggest Threat

Comment: 

This report from Killen & Associates is important. It focuses attention on Europe's banks. The y2k threat is a worldwide problem. In no area is this clearer than in banking. Banking is a system. If it cannot survive as a system, then the world's system of payments collapses. So does the world's division of labor, which keeps alive most residents in industrial societies.

The European banks are requiring their programmers to rewrite code to handle the complex Eurocurrency conversion that is scheduled for 1999. Now the programmers must also make the y2k conversion. The problem is: doing both at once. Nothing this huge has ever been attempted in the history of programming. There are no guidelines.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

PALO ALTO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 13, 1997--A new study from Killen & Associates, Banking Executives' Turn-of-the-Century Challenges: A Framework for Risk Reduction, states that banks worldwide face the greatest threat to their survival since the Great Depression. Before the end of this century, they must simultaneously overcome three imminent IT challenges -- the Year 2000 software conversion, the Euro conversion, and the creation of the electronic payments/electronic commerce infrastructure.

Dr. Gene Amdahl, "father" of the 360 computer, one of the world's most respected computer scientists, founder of Amdahl Corporation, and chairman of Commercial Data Servers said, "The Year 2000 conversion is a real IT challenge -- enough challenge to bring banks to a halt." Dr. Amdahl advises top management to perform due diligence to minimize their risks.

Margaret Soden, Senior Manager of Strategic Planning, Midland Bank PLC, said of Euro conversion, "European banks have never before had to attack a problem of this magnitude." Banks throughout the world must also develop systems to support the Euro.

Paul Harrison, CEO of MECA Software L.L.C., owned by Bank of America, NationsBank Corp., First Bank System, Fleet Financial, and Royal Bank of Canada, and a leading provider of software for electronic banking, commented, "Banks face a tremendous challenge managing these three major undertakings at the same time."

CONTACT: Killen & Associates Jules Street, 415/617-6130 jules@killen.com


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