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Blockchain is the answer but not in the way you think

Barely a week goes by without yet another announcement heralding a new blockchain initiative in capital markets. It almost seems that if you are the CIO of a major financial institution and you don’t have a blockchain project underway then you simply have nothing to talk about at dinner parties any more. But what is really going on is that these firms have finally figured out... Read More

Unbundling versus Best Ex

So, the September date looms for ESMA’s final clarification on unbundling. What seems evident is that payment for research with trading commissions is definitely going to be out. What seems less clear, though, is what can still be bundled into the definition of ‘execution’ and therefore still be paid for in commission dollars. Presumably, post-trade TCA services are... Read More

The gift that keeps on giving

Since Thomson Reuters announced the withdrawal of its market share reporter, the phones have been ringing red hot with enquiries asking if we could build a replacement using our existing free-to-view Frag website. This prompted a fierce debate here at Fidessa Towers as to whether we should commercialise this opportunity and, if so, what new features we would need to add and how... Read More

Clear danger ahead

As the regulators push us towards centralised clearing for OTC derivatives they may actually be making the world distinctly less safe. At face value it makes obvious sense; if one party defaults the CCP steps in. As always, though, the problem lies in the detail but this time not too far below the surface. The first problem concerns the efficient use of margin. As CCPs start to... Read More

Re-thinking post-trade

If you watched our last video you will have seen how firms are re-engineering processes rather than just trying and do the same things more cheaply. Post-trade represents an ideal area for this type of thinking as it is dominated by old proprietary technologies and unnecessary duplication. On top of this, the move to T+2 for European equities in October will reduce by a third the... Read More

An eye on the ‘new normal’

Our latest video looks at the key trends that characterise the ‘new normal’ in financial markets and how the most innovative firms are already adapting.  Read More

Build vs Buy becomes Rent vs Collaborate

An interesting couple of days at the International Derivatives Expo in London this week. Alongside the usual debate on OTC clearing, algo tagging and other regulatory conundrums, I was on a panel looking at the changing face of vendor relationships. What is evident is that the build vs buy debate has reached a new dimension as the economics of the FCM business, combined with the... Read More

Where there’s muck there’s brass

I don’t venture to the north of England often, but I do have a work colleague who hails from Yorkshire – the origin of the phrase “where there’s muck there’s brass”. Its basic meaning is that there is often good money to be made from doing the dirty jobs, and it seems like this is particularly true of global financial markets these days. The glamour and machismo of ... Read More

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