News & Commentary
Content posted in February 2007
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Can the Market's Systems Keep Up With Electronic Trading?
News  |  2/28/2007  | 
Yesterday's steep stock market plunge of 416 points sent a warning of how vulnerable the market structure is to systems glitches and data backlogs when there are unexpected volume surges and rapid sell-offs in an electronic trading environment. As most of us know, problems began around 2 p.m. when the Dow Jones Industrial Average was already down 200 points -- in part a reaction to the sell-off in Chinese stocks, translated into concerns about the U.S. economy. I was in the car at 2:30 p.m. wh
Northern Trust Reaches $10 Billion Mark in Cross-Border Pooling
News  |  2/28/2007  | 
Northern Trust is winning a great deal of pension business from multinational clients on the basis of its tax-transparent cross-border pooling. To enable international companies to pool the assets of their pension funds from many countries without running afoul of the IRS, the firm developed a tax-transparent cross-border pooling solution in September 2005. In fifteen months, assets in the product have grown from 0 to $10 billion and Northern Trust is seeking a patent on its methods of handling
Getting the Daylight Savings Monkey Off Your Back
News  |  2/27/2007  | 
On the list of forthcoming projects for CIOs is updating their systems to handle the changes in daylight savings time (DST) (DST). The Energy Policy Act of 2005 will cause DST to fall weeks earlier this year than in years past. With that in mind, industry analyst TowerGroup has issued recommendation
Nasdaq-LSE: Is the Party Over?
Commentary  |  2/27/2007  | 
Does the apparent death of the Nasdaq-LSE deal spell doom for the transatlantic duo? Are Nasdaq and the London Stock Exchange shark bait, or is this one more step in a chess match being staged on a global scale?
Will Exchanges Represent the Next IT Gravy Train?
News  |  2/26/2007  | 
Demutualization is the biggest trend currently sweeping the global exchange market. Currently, there are 24 public exchanges in the world with a market capitalization of $140 billion.
Nasdaq is Beginning to Consider a Future Without the London Stock Exchange
News  |  2/26/2007  | 
Nasdaq's pursuit of the LSE has received tremendous market and press coverage of late. However, the potential tie-up seemed to turn a strategic corner recently. The revelation, detailed below, that Nasdaq met with the Project Turquoise consortium a few weeks ago to potentially license the INET technology from its ECN platform takes Nasdaq's hostile pursuit of the London Stock Exchange (LSE) to another level. Whereas in the past the Nasdaq/LSE disagreement seemed to be over a fair price for th
Canadian Algo Trading Heats Up
News  |  2/22/2007  | 
As more Canadian firms turn to algorithmic trading tools, U.S. players dominate the market.
Straight Talk About the Cost of Doing Nothing
News  |  2/21/2007  | 
What's the cost of disorganized data on Wall Street? A portion of our cover package this month on The Cost of Doing Nothing was inspired by former Tower Group analyst and current SVP of enterprise data management software company Golden Source, Tim Lind, who knows a thing or two about the state of data in major firms. He shared some insightful and irreverent thoughts wit
Weak Enforcement of Corporate Governance and Lax Technical Controls Have Enabled the Illegal Backdating of Stock Options
News  |  2/21/2007  | 
Regulations focusing on backdating have prompted corporations to pursue technical solutions centered around time synchronization to eradicate the practice.
The Money's in MiFID
News  |  2/21/2007  | 
U.K. recruitment firm Joslin Rowe released a notice this week of what it is calling a "recruitment timebomb" for MiFID consultants. With just nine months to go before EU financial institutions are expected to be compliant with the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive, demand is soaring for experts who can help firms reach compliance.
Attractive Alternatives to Mainframes Are Breaking Their Decades-Old Hold on Wall Street
News  |  2/21/2007  | 
THE CHALLENGE: Wall Street has relied on the dependability of mainframes for more than 40 years. But as the competitive environment demands more efficiency and agility -- and as alternatives mature -- firms are weighing the pros and cons of migrating off their mainframes.
Against the Odds, the NYSE Has Successfully Implemented the Hybrid, Acquired Euronext and Become More Profitable
Commentary  |  2/21/2007  | 
New technology, combined with cost cutting and a large market share, has allowed the NYSE to become more profitable and successful.
Raj Mahajan Drives Transformation and Increases Wallet Share as the New President of Sungard’s Brass Unit.
News  |  2/21/2007  | 
Mahajan shifts the focus of Sungard's Brass unit from new sales to serving the needs of existing customers.
For Credit Suisse, Doing Nothing Is Not an Option
News  |  2/21/2007  | 
David Reilly, managing director of Credit Suisse's information technology group, says he often thinks about the cost of doing nothing.
The Do-Nothing Costs of Messy Data Architectures: Data Management Still Takes a Backseat at Many Financial Firms
News  |  2/21/2007  | 
Although you won't find it on any balance sheet, the lack of formal data management policies and processes can be costly. Securities' firms that fail to devote time and resources to data management practices and tools will find themselves paying a price of increased risk, failed trades and overly expensive data feeds.
Brokers Back CSAs to Help Buy Side Achieve Best Execution and Pay Research Providers
News  |  2/21/2007  | 
In search of best execution, buy-side firms tap brokers' new commission-sharing arrangements to pay for valuable research.
RSA Responds to Site-to-User Authentication Study
News  |  2/20/2007  | 
A couple of weeks ago, we wrote about a study that seemed to prove that site-to-user authentication was a broken practice. Well, not surprisingly, the purveyors of such technologies took exception to the notion that their product was ineffective. What follows is a response written by Louie Gasparini, co-CTO of the consumer divisi
More Phishing Phun: Even Experienced Web Users are Becoming Victims
News  |  2/16/2007  | 
You would think that by now almost every user of the Internet would know not to click on links in emails supposedly from financial institutions -- especially a bank that you have never heard of or have never done any business -- and enter your username or password. But as this podcast and article from National Public Radio (NPR) points out, Web-savvy individual
UNX Provides Access to Liquidity Sweeping Tools Via Instant Messaging
News  |  2/16/2007  | 
Last week, IM TRADER, the instant messaging network for brokers and fund managers, began allowing institutions to sweep electronic pools for hidden and visible liquidity by integrating its network with UNX's algorithmic technology. "We've helped integrate their algorithmic system out over the IMTRADER network to help investment professionals have the ability to communicate orders to a sophisticated platform using an AOL Instant Messenger window," explains Ed McDonnell, Pivot Solutions' SVP of S
RFA’s eHarbor Backs Up Hedge Fund E-Mail
News  |  2/15/2007  | 
New York-based hedge fund solutions specialist Richard Fleischman & Associates (RFA) released eHarbor, an e-mail data backup and restoration solution designed specifically with hedge funds in mind.
Paisley Consulting Released Its Enterprise GRC Platform
News  |  2/15/2007  | 
To help firms break down the barriers between audit, risk and compliance groups, Paisley Consulting released its Enterprise GRC (governance, risk and compliance) platform.
/security/
News  |  2/15/2007  | 
The Content Technology Solutions division of Dow Jones (New York) has launched a Wealth Manager Web site that aggregates news feeds and presents wealth managers with reasons for making contact with clients, the company says.
Former Lehman Brothers CIO Kevin McGilloway Joins Diamond Consultants
News  |  2/15/2007  | 
Former Lehman Brothers CIO Kevin McGilloway has joined Chicago-based Diamond Management & Technology Consultants as a partner.
Keeping Tabs
News  |  2/15/2007  | 
David Harris Is Named President of the CBOE Stock Exchange
News  |  2/15/2007  | 
The CBOE Stock Exchange (CBSX) -- a soon-to-be-launched electronic, Reg NMS-compliant stock exchange from the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) -- has named David Harris as its president.
Trial and Error: When It Comes to Compliance, the Bare Minimum Isn’t Enough Anymore
News  |  2/15/2007  | 
Detwiler, Mitchell, Fenton & Graves' CCO Robert Jeffords Dumped Two E-Mail Archiving Providers Before Being Satisfied With His E-Mail Compliance
Many Buy Siders Are Taking on the Role of Researcher
News  |  2/15/2007  | 
Some buy-side fims have stopped using sell-side research in favor of search applications such as firstRain.
UNX Provides Access to Liquidity Sweeping Tools Via Instant Messaging
News  |  2/15/2007  | 
Buy-side traders that feel comfortable using instant messaging to communicate with and route order flow to the sell-side community can now use IM to sweep crossing networks and dark pools. The cool technology comes as the result of a partnership between Pivot Solutions, the developer of IMTRADER and UNX, an agency brokerage specializing in direct-market access and algorithmic technology.
LatentZero Integrates EMS Functionality into Its Buy-Side OMS
News  |  2/14/2007  | 
With buy-side traders turning to faster execution management systems (EMSs) and installing them on the desktop next to their order management systems, the OMS vendors have been scrambling to provide EMS functionality. This week, LatentZero a supplier of front-office systems for the buy-side, said it had integrated EMS functionality into its buy-side OMS. The company's OMS, Capstone Minerva, now has a fully integrated EMS trading module desig
ING Traders Get Powers in Fingertips, Phone Home
News  |  2/14/2007  | 
ING has implemented biometric fingerprint scanning technology on its trading floor workstations. Dutch biometric consultant BioXS developed an integrated solution using matching software from BIO-key International combin
LSE Begins MiFID Consultation
News  |  2/14/2007  | 
The London Stock Exchange (LSE) announced that it has begun consultation with member firms on the services it will offer to keep members in compliance with MiFID. The exchange has built its services on the TradeElect platform, which will utilize preexisting connectivity and infrastructure to offer a familiar market model under MiFID. LSE will extend its marke
Fidelity Offers Investment Tracking Tool to Vista Users
News  |  2/14/2007  | 
Wasting no time reaching out to Microsoft Vista early adopters, Fidelity has released a Market Monitor gadget that Vista-using investors can use to keep an eye on their stocks. Gadgets are always-on mini-applications such as games, live webcams and traffic maps that can be downloaded free at www.gallery.live.com and sit in the miniature portal "Sidebar" section at the right of the Vista desktop screen. (Fidelity also offers its gadget at www.fidelity.com/beta.) The Fidelity gadget provides watc
Credit Suisse Outsources its Network Managers
News  |  2/13/2007  | 
As part of its ongoing effort to cut costs, Credit Suisse signed a deal today to outsource its entire voice and data network management infrastructure to BT and Swisscom. Under the $1.1 billion contract, 231 employees and 50 contractors will be transferred to BT. The contract has a minimum five-year term with the option of extending the term to seven years and encompasses Credit Suisse's enterprise and financial trading environments.
Deutsche Bank Securities in the Dog House
News  |  2/13/2007  | 
We missed out on this little tidbit late last week. Deutsche Bank Securities, Inc. (DBSI) was fined $1.275 million by NYSE Regulation in two separate actions involving conflicts of interest in its published research, and an employee who accessed privileged information from a former employe
Five Rules For Bringing Your Real-Life Business Into Second Life
News  |  2/13/2007  | 
With buy-side firms struggling to place a value on the research and services provided by the sell side, the status quo is no longer acceptable.
The Cost of Doing Nothing
News  |  2/13/2007  | 
As margins shrink in many business lines, forward-looking financial services firms increasingly are looking to shake up the status quo to find new ways to generate revenue while reducing costs.
Deliberating on E-discovery and the Changes to the FRCP
News  |  2/13/2007  | 
New rule changes make undiscoverable electronic documents a serious legal liability for financial services firms.
Asset Managers Push Custodians to Offer Independent Pricing Services for OTC Derivatives
News  |  2/13/2007  | 
The exponential growth of OTC derivatives is forcing custodians to provide independent valuation services to their institutional clients.
Exchanges Lag in IT Spending
News  |  2/12/2007  | 
Despite the global reinvention of securities exchanges as for-profit companies, IT spending by exchanges will continue to lag behind that of brokers and asset managers, according to research from TowerGroup
Ask the Experts: Trading
News  |  2/12/2007  | 
Question: Will SIFMA's request to have the SEC examine the NYSE's new market-data fees have any impact on the future fee structure(s)? What are the concerns about the proposed new market-data fee structure?
Brokerages Start Providing BlackBerrys
News  |  2/12/2007  | 
Slowly but slowly, brokerage firms are starting to provide wireless services to their clients, according to a report from Corporate Insight, which monitors U.S. brokerage firms' online presence.
Wealth Management Market Continues to Grow
News  |  2/12/2007  | 
The wealth management market will continue to grow through the end of the decade, according to a report from Boston-based Celent.
The Debate Over Execution Management Systems Vs. Order Management Systems
News  |  2/12/2007  | 
Over time, the current debate over the value of execution management systems (EMSs) versus order management systems (OMSs) will become irrelevant, predicts Aite Group (Boston).
FX Market Fragmentation
News  |  2/12/2007  | 
New numbers out of TABB Group (Westborough, Mass.) indicate that the foreign exchange market is following the lead of equities and becoming increasingly fragmented.
Energy-Efficient Data Centers on the Horizon
Commentary  |  2/12/2007  | 
The World Economic Forum seemed to be focused solely on global warming and climate change, if you relied on the news reports from columnists attending the event, including this magazine's own coverage.
How Does The Hacker Economy Work?
News  |  2/9/2007  | 
It's a murky world of chat rooms, malware factories, and sophisticated phishing schemes. Here's a look inside.
Easing the Pain of Financial Reporting (Well, the Data Preparation and Publishing Part, Anyway)
News  |  2/9/2007  | 
At most Wall Street firms, the preparing of quarterly and annual reports is a tense, stressful time of Excel files being emailed back and forth and behind-closed-door meetings at which financial numbers are presented, reviewed and approved. Two products aim to help walk you through this process, automatically routing data to the right people and acquiring their approvals (using electronic signatures), providing the controls that Sarbanes-Oxley and accounting practices require, and producing stat
ITG POSIT Targets MiFID and Others Follow Suit
News  |  2/8/2007  | 
Ivy Schmerken, Advanced Trading Crossing networks are staking out their turf in trading Pan European equities as a prelude to competing with traditional exchanges under the Markets In Financial Instruments Directive or MiFID. This week, Investment Technology Group (ITG) said it plans to launch POSIT Now, a continuous intraday crossing system for equities - into Europe. POSIT was the first regulated ATS in Europe but as of November, it will become a
Connecting to Alternative Execution Venues
News  |  2/7/2007  | 
Ivy Schmerken, Wall Street & Technology With the proliferation of alternative electronic execution venues lining up to compete with the New York Stock Exchange and The Nasdaq Stock Market, connectivity to these new liquidity pools is not a topic that gets discussed much. But this week two of the new electronic marketplaces - one an ECN, the other a stock exchange - revealed new partnerships with electronic trading platforms.
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