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Category Archives: Commentary

Commentary from the John Lothian News staff and guests editors.

D is for Data: FinTech Exchange Standard

The sold-out FinTech Exchange conference, hosted by Barchart, was largely about data – what to do with data, how exchanges are capturing new data and how to trade it. That, on its surface, isn’t particularly new. But the infrastructure to capture all kinds of data is now developed. The CME Group’s Julie Armstrong Menacho colorfully outlined how the exchange has migrated all of its historical data onto the cloud, giving customers greater access to it, along with a growing list of partners who provide alternative data sets like satellite images of oil storage facilities or social media sentiment. CBOE’s Catherine…

The future of futures markets: Exchanges looking to fail fast Standard

Andreas Preuss, deputy CEO, Deutsche Boerse had a show stopper. At the IOMA: World Federation Exchanges conference in Frankfurt on Friday, he said his exchange will have to speed up its business processes exponentially in the next two to three years in order to thrive. Implementing products and services from beginning to release will go from today’s 18 months to 4 days. Yes, you read that correctly. And no, no one in the audience was laughing. “The old way was seven months of iterations of prototypes,” Preuss said. “In the world I am aiming at, the business IT and operations…

Testing the Waters: Blockchain Technology is Edging into the Exchange Space Standard

By now, the hype surrounding digital ledger technology has subsided into reality. The reality, however, is that initial blockchain-based solutions are on the way. The hysteria that blockchain was going to be the big disruptor that puts clearinghouses out of business is essentially over. What is sprouting up instead are some interesting projects that are much more targeted at markets and sectors that beg for technological advancement. At the IOMA: WFE Conference in Frankfurt, Anton Govor, managing director and head of strategy for Moscow Exchange Group said the exchange has developed a working digital ledger-based proxy voting product. It is…

The Tough Question: What Will European Markets Look Like In Two Years? Standard

Markets continue to struggle with the prospects of a new political future and structure. Steven Maijoor, chair of European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), told the audience at the IOMA, World Federation of Exchanges Clearing and Derivatives Conference in Frankfurt on Thursday that there are challenges for the EU’s long pursuit of a single rulebook. Brexit will have a “negative impact” on efforts for market harmonization, as well as the so-called capital market union in the EU. David Wright, chairman of Eurofi Paris and partner at Flint Global, said the United Kingdom will have to be a “rule taker and…

Jim Oliff is Good to Go Standard

When Jim Oliff resigned from the CME Group board a couple of weeks ago several friends reached out to him to check on his health. They figured such a sudden exit from the CME board of directors after 31 years must be because of a health problem. That is not the case. Jim Oliff is healthy, wealthy and wise. The wealthy and wise parts are a combination of being a CME member and having earned a wealth of experience and industry knowledge from his years as a key insider at the CME during its ascendency over the last 30+ years….

A Difference Maker: Post-trade Clearing Tech Now a Differentiator For Firms Standard

If today’s markets are traded in milliseconds, why can’t post-trade clearing keep up? ION is addressing that with its XTP clearing solution, a near real-time system it has quietly been rolling out since 2015. Last year the product was adopted by a handful of firms. And this year, ION is hoping to see a larger migration of customers to the new platform, which is considered a major upgrade to its Rolfe & Nolan system. It took ION four years to build the system, creating it on top of ION’s core trading technology. The low-profile firm is stepping out a bit…

NEX Stop, The Future Of Markets Standard

Sometimes the machine needs a reboot. Such is the case with NEX Group, the former ICAP group minus the ICAP voice brokerage business. By now, we know that NEX’s CEO Michael Spencer looked to the future and decided that voice brokering wasn’t it. That doesn’t mean it isn’t valuable. But it just isn’t what he wants to do with his time or shareholder money. So what’s left? Plenty actually, although it took me a while to figure it out. In a simplistic sense, the company is rolling all of its trading platforms, technology companies and venture capital arm into one…

Comment from Director of Strategy at Fidessa on UK triggering article 50 and impact on financial markets Standard

On the markets and trading technology: “Article 50 is part of a broader global phenomenon of nationalism that is breaking out globally. This has profound effects on financial markets as the concept of a single global financial marketplace looks more fragile than ever. Nevertheless in the real world financial market participants need to trade and operate globally. To do so, they need access to real global networks that allow them to deal in whatever market required while normalising any differences between regions including the growing inconsistencies between regulations.”  On the strength of UK as a financial services hub: “The UK might be…

How do we make American markets great again? Keep it simple, stupid. Standard

CFTC Commissioner Christopher Giancarlo detailed his plan for the agency after being nominated by President Trump as chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission on Wednesday at FIA Boca. Gene Simmons would be proud — the new initiative is called Project KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid). KISS has three key goals: fostering U.S. economic growth, enhancing markets and “rightsizing” the agency’s footprint. All of these tie into Giancarlo’s overarching point about the agency — it has lost sight of its regulatory goals.  On the topic of fostering U.S. economic growth, Giancarlo took a big picture look at the tumult of…