Industry news

Date: Jun 26, 2013

June 26, 2013: New Canadian stock exchange seeks to challenge dominant TMX; CME among the winners of stock market turbulence; Trading Technologies rolls out Europe services

Royal Bank of Canada and some fund manager friends plan a new stock exchange to challenge Toronto’s TMX by offering a non-HFT environment. Recent news and economic shocks have created tough volatility for many investors, but CME Group is coming out ahead this time. Trading Technologies unveils two big deals in Europe, expanding the company’s footprint.

First Read

Bringing the back office out of the shadows?
David SettersContango Markets
‘Clunky’ software for the post trade area of exchange traded derivatives (developed in the 80s and 90s which makes it time consuming and expensive to adapt quickly to the changing market environment), together with a real lack of choice in providers, has long been a bane of the hard pressed futures and options operations community. There was some speculation among seasoned industry professionals at the IDX conference this week, however, that there might be light at the end of the tunnel in terms of ongoing work on developing next generation post trade processing platforms by the usual suspects.

This might be the rather boring, Cinderella end of the business but as has often been pointed out technology for post trade and middle office, especially in the new environment, needs to keep pace with developments in the front office as well as with new regulatory demands.

‘Increased cost pressures from budget constraints in back offices mean that FCMs and clients need to think about smarter solutions,’ says my colleague, Richard Wilkinson, Senior Associate at Contango Operations. ‘With the advent of OTC clearing not only is there a need to seek all-embracing solutions but there is also space for potential new players to ETD to look at different parts of the transaction lifecycle and where they can add value.’

With ION said to be bringing the various strands of its multiple acquisitions together in an, as yet, unpublished ‘vision’ you can be sure Sungard will also be on the case. But ETD specialists might also expect to see new players come into the space, perhaps from other asset classes. Traiana have already added ETD markets to their Harmony offering but will we also hear more from the likes of Markitserv, Calypso, Cinnober etc?

Ok, so it may only be about the ‘plumbing’ but developments in this space will be more interesting than you may think in the coming months and years.


[Video] CME helping hard working CPS student’s dream come true
Carlos Cobarrubias is a young man whose determination and hard work is helping his family with dreams of a better life. For Carlos, the path to the floor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange began behind his parent’s corner fruit stand on the northwest side. He is an American born son of undocumented immigrants. The 18-year-old has been working for as long as he can remember to help bring in the $1000 dollar income his family has each month. After rent there wasn’t more than $300 dollars left over for the family of seven and virtually no time to study.


Perseus Brazil Debuts Market-To-Market Liquidity Platform LiquidPath
Perseus Telecom announces a fully managed ultra low latency solution offering, LiquidPath, that encompasses a complete trading network solution and infrastructure service for local and international exchange trading across global financial markets. LiquidPath was developed to empower both the international buy-side with the local sell-side in order to take full advantage of the ever-evolving emerging markets landscape.

***DA: For more on Perseus, see our recent interview with Perseus CEO Jock Percy


Joe Bigane to Depart 7ticks
Joe Bigane’s last day with 7ticks will be June 28th. He is taking the summer off to spend time with the family and recharge his batteries, but by Autumn he plans to be fully underway in search of his next adventure/challenge. As you know, Bigane was an early member of the 7ticks team. Under Joe’s leadership 7ticks became a significant niche technology provider and a prized acquisition of Interactive Data

***** (John Lothian from London): Congratulations and good luck to Joe Bigane, one of the true good guys of the industry. It will be interesting to see what he does next.


European CEOs lock horns over NLX
FOW Intelligence
Nasdaq OMX NLX‘s chief executive Charlotte Crosswell, representing the first woman to appear on an leadership panel at the FIA IDX expo today, was immediately pushed to defend her platforms pricing model in today’s discussion, writes Jonathan Watkins. Eurex CEO, Andreas Preuss‘ candid comments came on a panel which is sometimes rather reserved in their responses, as he questioned the motives behind those funding the NLX project.

***DS: Crosswell apparently became the first female to ever sit on the exchange leaders panel at IDX, although I believe we would have included Elizabeth Sam of SIMEX on one of the early FIA/FOW conference programmes. In any event, Crosswell did her colleagues at WILD (Women in Listed Derivatives) proud, calmly batting away some subtle criticism from NYSE Liffe’s Finbarr Hutcheson and ICE’s Jeff Sprecher, and somewhat more calculated provocation from Eurex CEO, Andreas Preuss, regarding the new exchange’s pricing policy and payment for order flow.

After the edgy excitement of those exchanges some cynics suggested that Preuss should be first on the list for a speaker invitation to WILD London’s next gathering.


Is the 136-year-old London Metal Exchange ready for a woman CEO?
Reuters via Yahoo! News
Whisper it: The next chief of the London Metal Exchange (LME), where only men take part in the shouted, testosterone-fuelled trading of materials like copper, may be a woman who prides herself on speaking softly. Industry sources say Harriet Hunnable, managing director of metals at the CME Group, is among potential candidates to be LME chief executive when Martin Abbott leaves the post at the end of this year.

***DS: Ooh, I can hear the pips squeaking again! According to the Flat Earth Society, there’s a rumour that the ring may disappear soon…


CME Group Announces NYMEX Brent (BZ) Trading Volume Surpasses 65,000
CME Group, the world’s leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace, today announced it reached a trading volume record for its NYMEX Brent (BZ) crude oil futures contract yesterday, June 24, 2013. Trading volume for NYMEX Brent reached 65,065, compared to June 19, 2013, the last record day, when volume reached 54,647 contracts.


SEC and Big Data
Inside the Beltway – Clarke Camper
In a recent speech to SIFMA’s annual Tech Conference, Gregg Berman, the SEC’s Associate Director of Analytics and Research, discussed how new technologies are giving the SEC a better understanding of today’s financial markets.


CME’s Jack Sandner puts his future-vision goggles on to tell us what’s next for futures
Before it was a publicly held concern with a $25 billion market value, CME was a mutual organization owned and controlled by its members — an unruly crowd of loud, smart, headstrong traders. As CME’s chairman for all but five years from 1980-1999, Jack Sandner had the unenviable task of persuading his members to take crucial steps toward electronic trading, demutualization and an eventual public offering. Grid asked him to look back on those seminal days.

***** (John Lothian from London): This interview is very interesting, especially where Jack seems to take credit for things. Perhaps the Grid should have talked to others who were around then too.


Is Clearing a Force for Good?
Bill Hodgson – TABB Forum
If central clearing delivers trust in the post-trade environment and the spread of market knowledge, then it is a force for good and should been seen as a new enabler for the development of emerging economies, more than aid or loans.

***DS: Yes indeed it is, as long as the funding is appropriate for the risk. Otherwise it’s a systemic liability, especially in emerging markets.


Royal Bank of Canada Gains by Putting the Brakes on Traders
In the financial equivalent of the Tortoise and the Hare, Royal Bank of Canada has risen up the ranks of the biggest stock trading firms in the United States by embracing a rather Canadian restraint and prudence. At the center of the efforts by the bank’s New York trading desk is a technology that actually slows its customers’ orders so as to evade high frequency traders. And unlike nearly every other large bank in New York, it has elected not to open its own dark pool, where banks privately carry out customer trades away from the public exchanges.

***DS: This seems to be an increasingly discussed topic. Investigation of the value of avoiding the fast lane has real potential.


Market Structure, Broker Conflicts Do More Harm Than HFT
Maker-taker fees and broker conflicts do more harm to do trading that HFT says an industry expert.

***DA: Saying “You think we’re bad…look at what those guys are doing” is about the worst defense I can think of.


NYSE flash crash reignites the circuit-breaker debate
Dan Barnes – Financial News
The New York Stock Exchange has reinstated its safety net against market volatility following a mini flash crash last month, renewing debate over the best way to prevent sudden price swings.

***DS: In futures markets with similar or ‘me-too’ products listed globally, does the circuit breaker have real relevance when the participant can continue trading on an alternative venue when that provides an economic equivalent?


Guru Networks Sell Social Investing to Copycat Traders
Jonathan Morgan – Bloomberg
Internet social networks that let users follow investments the way they track status updates on Facebook are attracting record interest, turning top performers into market stars for individual investors. In contrast to the secrecy that exists elsewhere in the investment world, where hedge funds protect their strategies and brokerages keep identities of private-banking clients confidential, the networks make positions visible to everyone.


London Special Report

View Special Report »

London has long been seen as THE global financial center. But given economic, political and regulatory changes, can it retain its title as the world’s top financial marketplace? For many in the financial sector, the answer is yes, but it must navigate some tough political and regulatory challenges from the European Union.

John Lothian News took a 2013 snapshot of the derivatives landscape in London. We spoke with regulators, exchange leaders, buy-side participants and others, and put together this special presentation featuring five short videos, numerous charts, graphs and fun facts, and an in-depth story on the City, from the Big Bang of 1986 to the recent financial crisis and its aftermath.

With the impending regulatory overhaul, changes to financial benchmarks such as LIBOR and threats of transaction taxes and disharmony across jurisdictions, London faces some clear headwinds. With these challenges, though, come opportunities – for exchanges, fund managers, vendors and other service providers. London’s financial landscape will certainly evolve, but will continue moving forward.

As the old World War II poster said, “Keep Calm and Carry On.”

View Special Report »



Cinnober GH Financial IFM



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Lead Stories

New Canadian stock exchange seeks to challenge dominant TMX
Reuters via Yahoo! News
Canada’s largest bank and some of its most influential fund managers plan to set up a new stock exchange to challenge the dominant TMX Group Ltd , one that would limit the role of controversial high-frequency trading strategies.

CME among the winners of stock market turbulence
Jason Abbruzzese and Arash Massoudi in New York –
Interest rate volatility led to unpleasant shocks for many US stock investors but has provided a sliver lining for shareholders of CME Group – the exchange emerging as one of the few winners of the recent market turbulence.

Trading Technologies rolls out Europe services
Philip Stafford –
Trading Technologies, a US trading software provider, is set to make further incursions into European trading after concluding two deals this week. The Chicago-based group said on Tuesday it had become the first independent company to meet the standards for connection to CME Europe, the upcoming new London-based derivatives exchange.

CFTC likely to charge MF Global execs beyond Corzine: legal experts
Reuters via Yahoo! News
The lawsuit that the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission is considering filing against MF Global chief executive Jon Corzine would require the CFTC also to charge other former MF Global employees, legal experts said on Tuesday.

Jon Corzine Is Probably Not Going to Jail
New York Magazine
It was always unlikely that Jon Corzine — the former Goldman Sachs chief, New Jersey governor, and beard-haver — would go to jail for the collapse of MF Global, the brokerage firm he ran into the ground in 2011. Stupidity isn’t a crime, after all, and what MF Global did — made a bunch of risky repo-to-maturity trades that hinged on the European debt crisis resolution, then shuffled some customer funds into an account that was used to pay off creditors when things didn’t go as planned — was undeniably dumb, but there was little evidence that it was criminal or that Corzine knew the full extent of what was going on under him.

Bipartisan Senate bill seeks to abolish Fannie, Freddie
A bipartisan bill introduced in the Senate Teusday would replace Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac with a government reinsurer of mortgage securities that would backstop private capital in a crisis.

BoE’s King signs off, condemns banks for lobbying
Reuters via Yahoo! News
Bank of England Governor Mervyn King, making probably his final public comments before retiring, accused British banks of lobbying senior politicians to undermine a new system of financial regulation.

Careless talk may cost the economy
Martin Wolf –
Since the beginning of May, monetary policy has undergone a substantial tightening. This has taken the form of a rise in the yield on the bonds of highly rated governments. The yield on 10-year US Treasuries rose by 88 basis points between May 2 and the end of last week, to 2.51 per cent. This is a clear tightening of monetary conditions: a rise in these yields lead to rising borrowing costs for the private sector. It is, however, not clear that it is deliberate: longer-term bond yields are not an explicit target for monetary policy.

News from Turkey

EU Agrees to Continue Turkey Accession Talks
The European Union has agreed to advance accession talks with Turkey, although it postponed negotiations on Ankara’s bid to join the 27-nation bloc until fall, the Irish presidency of the EU said on Tuesday.


NASDAQ OMX Global Large Mid Cap Index Receives Special FINRA Designation
The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc. today announced the Financial Industry Regulation Authority (FINRA) has designated the NASDAQ Global Large Mid Cap Index as an alternative index to allow member firms to calculate position limits on conventional equity options on foreign listed securities. Beginning June 27, member firms may use securities in the NASDAQ Global Large Mid Cap Index for purposes of position limit and quote criteria, pursuant to FINRA Rule 2360.

Oil-Trade ‘Spoofing’ Allegations Reviewed by CFTC, Chilton Says
Steve Stroth – Bloomberg
The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission is reviewing complaints of bogus bids and offers in the West Texas Intermediate crude-oil market, a practice known as “spoofing,” according to Bart Chilton, a commissioner.

Testimony Of CFTC Chairman Gary Gensler Before The U.S. Senate Appropriations Subcommittee On Financial Services And General Government, Washington, DC

Speech By Commissioner Mark P. Wetjen Before The Futures Industry Association (“FIA”) And Futures & Options Association (“FOA”) International Derivatives Expo

SIFMA Statement On CFTC Commissioner Wetjen’s Remarks On Cross-Border Treatment Of Derivatives

Exchanges & Trading Facilities

TeraExchange Connects to CME Clearing to Provide Margin Relief to Customers Trading Interest Rate Swaps, Eurodollar …
TeraExchange , an electronic swap execution platform (SEF), today announced that its operations are fully connected to CME Clearing and are ready for trading of cleared interest rate and credit swaps.

[CBOE] Penny Pilot Program – Replacement Classes to be Added on July 3, 2013

NYSE Group Inc. Issues Short Interest Report

NYSE MKT Issues Short Interest Report

NYSE to Commence Proceedings to Delist the Common Stock of Verso Paper Corp.

[SIX] Investigation of Eastern Property Holdings Limited [pdf]

NASDAQ Announces Mid-Month Open Short Interest Positions In NASDAQ Stocks As Of Settlement Date June 14, 2013

Moscow Exchange: Results Of The Annual General Meeting Of Shareholders

Starting From July, 8th Moscow Stock Exchange Expands The T+2 Traded Equities List

Hedge Funds & Managed Futures

Stanley Ross Eluded Nazi Bombs to Transform World Bond Markets
John Glover – Bloomberg
As 11-year-old Stanley Ross huddled in a shelter on a North London public housing estate in the summer of 1942, a German bomb landed just feet away. It was a dud. “There was a stick of eight bombs and ours was the fifth, and it landed just there,” he said, pointing to the adjacent table during a June 6 interview at London’s Savoy Grill. “Had it gone off I wouldn’t be here now. I’d have been vaporized.”

New Certificate Provider Rankings Shows Shift in the Delivery of Information on Structured Products for Retail Investors
Sapient Global Markets, a division of Sapient, in collaboration with Die Welt, announced new certificate provider rankings for issuers of structured products in the German market. The rankings show a shift in how information is provided to the retail investor with new channels to access information, increase client service and provide a transparent environment around the products available.

More big-name hedge funds nurse wounds from bond sell-off
Reuters via Yahoo! News
One of last year’s top-performing hedge fund managers, Deepak Narula, is suffering a reversal of fortune as the mortgage bonds that steered him to the top of the industry in 2012 are now delivering losses.

Pimco Funds Battered in Bond-Market Retreat
Bond king Bill Gross is one of the hardest hit from the broad credit market selloff. Pacific Investment Management Co.’s $285.2 billion Total Return Bond Fund has lost 3.65% in June alone, making it the 12th-worst performer among 177 similar bond funds tracked by data firm Lipper.

Kirk’s Cantab Hedge Fund Said to Drop 14% in June Selloff
Cantab Capital Partners LLP, a hedge-fund firm partly owned by Goldman Sachs Group Inc., has lost 14 percent in its main fund this month as bonds and currencies fell, two people familiar with the performance said.

Fixed income in focus for Instinet
Tim Cave – Financial News
Nomura’s agency brokerage Instinet has confirmed plans to extend its expertise into fixed income products, underlining the industry’s move to combine the trading of once-distinct asset classes.

Ex-Bank of America trader launches credit hedge fund: source
Reuters via Yahoo! Finance
Veteran credit trader Iftikhar Ali is launching his own hedge fund firm, a source close to the new company told Reuters, as traders look to cash in on turbulent bond markets.

European portfolio companies target Asian growth
Sonja Cheung – Financial News
Seeing the potential rewards of Asian growth, more European private equity-backed companies are seeking market entry into the region, especially China, at a time when some buyout firms are cooling on the US.

Investing in Wine: Sour Grapes or Liquid Gold?
U.S.News & World Report LP via Yahoo! News
When reviewing their portfolios, many investors will instinctively reach for a glass of wine if their holdings have taken a hit. But in recent years, wine has proven to be more than just an antidote for investment-related blues. Instead, it is increasingly becoming an investment in and of itself.

California Hedge Fund Association to Hold Fall Symposium at HedgeWorld West
The latest installment of one of the nation’s leading hedge fund conferences, HedgeWorld West, will take place October 7-9, 2013 at the Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay, CA, this year in partnership with the California Hedge Fund Association.

Subscription starts for Deutsche Rohstoff AG corporate bond

Banks & Brokers

Clients replace regulation as top priority for banks
Anna Irrera – Financial News
Concerns over the burden of post-crisis regulations have started to wane among senior banking executives, with the greatest focus among financial institutions switching to keeping their clients happy.

Irish bankers joke over bailout at EU’s expense
Reuters via Yahoo! Finance
In the sort of scene that must infuriate Chancellor Angela Merkel, Irish bankers were taped laughing about a bank bailout deal and then mocking the European Union’s paymaster by singing the German national anthem.

HSBC considers quitting Iraq by selling Dar Es Salaam bank stake
Reuters via Yahoo! News
DUBAI – HSBC Holdings said on Tuesday it is considering selling its majority stake in Dar Es Salaam Investment Bank , which has made it the main international lender in Iraq.

Interactive Brokers Group Goes Live With ISO 20022 Corporate Actions Announcement Messages

Clearing & Settlement

OCC moves standard options expiry process to Friday
The OCC said on Monday it has moved the expiration process of standard monthly options contracts from Saturday to Friday night after receiving approval from U.S. securities regulators.

New Global Issuer Hub Launched By Clearstream
Clearstream launches its Global Issuer Hub in the run-up to the 50th anniversary next month of the first Eurobond issuance by Italian motorway network Autostrade. The Global Issuer Hub is new in that it consolidates all issuance services into one access point, making issuances more efficient.

ISDA Publishes Additional Provisions Relating To Credit Derivative Transactions With A Restricted Delivery Party Where Physical Settlement Applies

Indexes & Products

Tradeweb Introduces Electronic Hedging Tool For European ETFs – Combines Basket Sourcing And Trading To Improve Efficiency And Liquidity

MVIS Announces Monthly Index Review Results for Market Vectors Hedge Fund Beta Indices

Tokyo Stock Exchange To Begin Calculation And Publication Of TOPIX Ex-Financials Indexes And ETF License Application Starts

Changes In The Composition Of The Athex Indices


G.H. Financials and Trading Technologies Enter into Global Software and TTNET Distribution Agreement
G.H. Financials together with Trading Technologies International, Inc. today announced that G.H. Financials have chosen TT’s high-performance, fully managed hosting solution, TTNET, to provide global derivatives market access to their mutual clients.

Numerix and TMX Group’s Razor Risk Announce Collaborative Partner Agreement
Numerix, the leading provider of cross-asset analytics for derivatives valuations and risk management, and TMX Group’s technology business, TMX Technology Solutions today announced a collaborative partner agreement. TMX Group’s Razor Risk technology, a fully integrated Enterprise Risk management product, will leverage Numerix’s comprehensive library of industry standard, market tested risk and pricing models within its solutions for Credit Risk, Market Risk and Economic Capital management.

BRE Securities Chooses SunGard’s Valdi And The SunGard Global Network For International Trading And Connectivity
Dom Inwestycyjny BRE Banku S.A., the broker arm of Polish BRE Bank Group, part of the Commerzbank financial services group, has selected SunGard’s Valdi together with the SunGard Global Network (SGN), SunGard’s international trading cloud, for international trading and connectivity.


Authorities Investigating SAC Capital Are Considering a ‘Willful Blindness’ Approach
U.S. officials are investigating whether hedge-fund titan Steven A. Cohen purposely avoided learning about alleged criminal activity at his firm and, if so, whether that behavior could form an element of any charges against him, according to people familiar with the matter.

Federal Court Orders Alpha Trade Group S.A. and its Employees and Agents to Pay Combined Restitution and Penalties of $5.779 Million for Defrauding Pool Participants
The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) today announced that on June 3, 2013, Judge Gregory A. Presnell of the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida entered an Amended Order entering final judgment (Order) against Defendants Alpha Trade Group, S.A. (ATG), Jose Cecilio Martinez Beltran (Martinez), Welinton Bautista Castillo (Bautista), Yehodiz Padua Valentin (Padua), Maria Alvarez Gutierrez (Gutierrez), and Maria Asela Rodriguez (Rodriguez), all of Orlando, Florida, for their involvement in a fraudulent off-exchange foreign currency (forex) and commodity futures scheme involving two pools, Orsa Investment Group, L.L.C. and Online Marketing Solutions.

Federal Court Orders Chicago Resident Christopher Varlesi to Pay over $1.3 Million to Settle Ponzi Scheme Fraud and Misappropriation Action
The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) today announced that it obtained a federal court Order against Defendant Christopher Varlesi of Chicago, Illinois, individually and doing business as Gold Coast Futures and Forex, requiring him to pay restitution of more than $638,000 to defrauded investors and a $700,000 civil monetary penalty.

CFTC Charges North Carolina Resident C. David Wright with Commodity Pool Fraud
The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) announced today that on June 24, 2013, it filed a civil enforcement action charging C. David Wright of Iron Station, North Carolina, with operating a $1 million commodity pool Ponzi scheme and misappropriating participants’ funds. Wright has never been registered with the CFTC.

New Zealand’s Financial Markets Authority: Guilty Pleas In Dominion Finance Case

Environmental & Energy

Obama Sets Limiting Carbon as Priority in Climate Plan
President Barack Obama declared that limiting carbon emissions is in the national interest, setting a standard that will affect almost every sector of the economy, from power plants to the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

UK given carbon emissions warning
The UK is not on track to hit its climate change targets through the 2020s, government advisers have warned.The Committee on Climate Change said carbon emissions rose in 2012 by 3.5%.

EU agrees new 2020 car emissions targets
Business Green
Green groups have cautiously welcomed new EU rules which could slash CO2 emissions from new cars by the end of the decade, but warned the deal is too lenient on luxury German car makers.


Banks slow to revive Singapore trading desks after rate-fixing cull
Reuters via Yahoo! News
Cost pressures and tougher regulation mean banks in Singapore are struggling to replace the 100 traders who left the market during a rate-fixing probe. The world’s fourth largest foreign exchange center is still reeling from the crackdown, which has left volumes flowing through banks’ once vibrant interest rate and emerging market currency trading desks a long way below pre-scandal levels.

China’s Unprecedented Proactive Bubble-Bursting
NEW YORK — What has been happening in Chinese market since about a week ago is much more spectacular and profound than the official FOMC taper talk in many ways. Although it may not impact many investors in the U.S. directly, I suspect people interested in monetary policy and financial regulation will talk about it for a long time to come.

Hong Kong’s I.P.O. Market Cools
After a spring thaw that saw several big offerings, Hong Kong’s market for new stock listings may be back on ice.

Japan’s Securities and Exchange Surveillance Commission: The Securities Inspection Policy And The Program For 2013

Frontier Markets

Saudi Stock Exchange: The Change Of Tadawul Official Trading Days

Dubai Financial Market Honors “Task Force” In Charge Of UAE Market Upgrade To “Emerging Market” Status By MSCI


Financier Marc Rich Dies in Switzerland
Marc Rich, the trader known as the “King of Commodities” whose controversial 2001 pardon by President Bill Clinton just hours before he left office unleashed a political firestorm of criticism, died on Wednesday. He was 78.

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