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Category Archives: Commentary

Commentary from the John Lothian News staff and guests editors.

Newest Criminal Spoofing Case Features Coordinated Spoofing and Front Running Standard

The following is a guest post by Renato Mariotti, a former federal prosecutor and partner at Thompson Coburn LLP.   On last Thursday, June 1st, the Justice Department entered into a plea agreement with a trader named David Liew, publicly revealing the existence of the third-ever criminal spoofing case, which had been filed under seal on January 3rd. In the plea agreement, Liew admitted that from December 2009 to February 2012 he conspired with other precious metal traders to engage in spoofing on hundreds of occasions and to commit fraud by misleading other market participants via his spoof trades.  Liew’s…

Osaka Exchange of Japan Exchange Group Joins John Lothian News Sponsors Standard

First Asian Exchange Sponsor of John Lothian News John Lothian News is pleased to announce that the Osaka Exchange has agreed to become a Contributor Level sponsor of John Lothian News. Osaka Exchange (OSE) is the derivatives arm of the Japan Exchange Group (JPX) and widely known as the mother market of Nikkei 225 Futures and Options. OSE renewed its trading platform in July 2016 and trading is now available nearly 24 hours a day in its markets, which are some of the most liquid in the world. “We (Osaka Exchange-JPX Group) are excited to build the new relationship with…

Correction: NFA and FINRA Do Recognize Other Regulator’s Bans Standard

John Lothian

It turns out that the NFA and FINRA do jointly recognize the bans of other regulators already. In the specific case I mentioned, that of Jon Corzine, he would register if necessary with the SEC. Whether the SEC will recognize the ban of another regulator is a question I am still awaiting an answer. There is a loophole that was expanded by Dodd-Frank that allows hedge funds with less than $150 million to not have to register with the SEC. Tom Sexton of the NFA responded to my inquiry by saying: With regard to your column last week, you should…

Time to Close the Asset Class Ban Loophole Standard

Corzine and his ilk Should be Banned Across All Asset Classes Note: A correction to this story has been posted here. The NFA and FINRA to recognize the bans of other regulators. With the recent news that former MF Global CEO Jon Corzine is attempting to make a comeback at age 70 as a hedge fund manager, it became clear there is a hole in our regulatory system that needs to be fixed. Corzine is banned for life by the CFTC from trading futures, yet he can operate in the securities and FX worlds managing other people’s money. It is…

The Event Of The Summer: JLN & FOW Present Trading Chicago Standard

The Event Of The Summer: JLN & FOW Present Trading Chicago For the first time in John J. Lothian & Co.’s history, we are partnering with FOW (Global Investor Group) to host our first Trading Chicago event on June 28th. This one-day event is aimed largely at the end-users of the markets: commodity trading advisors, asset managers, hedge funds and proprietary traders. The conference will cover the issues that impact those firms directly – regulation, technology and market structure, with an underlying thread of trading in an age of uncertainty. Of course, there is always uncertainty and this program aims…

How Do You Save the Capital Markets? Standard

Kennedy Looks to Lead Market Revamp Kevin Kennedy is my new hero. The senior vice president and head of equity options, on stage at the Options Industry Conference last week, spoke about taking the lead on a new initiative to change the existing financial and regulatory structure for financial markets. And he urged the other exchange executives from the other four major options markets to join him. In today’s political environment, it takes courage for someone to stand up and say they want to fix the financial markets so they stay the envy of world capital markets.  And there is…

All Together Now: Exchange Leaders Call For Cooperative Approach To Changing Market Structure Standard

U.S. equity options leaders said today’s market structure needs fixing and vowed to work together to address it at the Options Industry Conference in Scottsdale, Arizona. Among some of the structural problems are a perceived lack of liquidity, a rigid regulatory structure that has supported the fragmentation of markets, and a concentration of volume on a relatively small number of listings. Kevin Kennedy, who serves as senior vice president, head of U.S. options at Nasdaq, called for the exchanges and participants to work together to upgrade the market structure so it works better and more efficiently in the coming years….

Not as Bad as it Seems: Schwartz Addresses the State of the Options Industry Standard

Henry Schwartz, president of Trade Alert, gave his annual “State of the Options Industry” address at the Options Industry Conference in Scottsdale, Arizona, and painted a more optimistic picture than recent portrayals in the press.   Yes, options volumes for 2017 are predicted to be flat to slightly up, a bit more than 4 billion contracts, but to Schwartz, that is a good number given the lack of volatility. Another positive is that more institutional users are appearing in the options market. According to his calculations based on regulatory filings, some 100 institutions enter options markets annually while 85-90 drop…

MarketsWiki Hits 100 Million Page View Mark Standard

MarketsWiki crossed the 100 million page view mark yesterday. 100,000,000! Talk about big data! MarketsWiki is what transformed John J. Lothian & Company, Inc. into a real company with employees, culture and ambition. Before it launched, JJLCO was just me and a deal with Jim Kharouf on the Environmental Markets Newsletter. From the idea I shared at the FIA Boca Conference in 2007 sprung the platform that would allow JJLCO to utilize the goodwill it had built up and turn that into cash to build MarketsWiki, which now has more than 22,000 pages. Jon Matte was the first hire and…