trading

Lower Bond Trading Costs

As the fixed income market evolves, what are the challenges and general directions of transaction cost analysis (TCA)? How can bond investors spend their money more wisely? “The same kind of conversation we used to have with equity dealers … can now occur with fixed income dealers. That means competition will drive down transaction costs,” said Henry Marigliano, Director at FIS Global Trading. FIS is an international provider of financial services technology. He was the was the first of two panellists discussing fixed income transaction cost analysis at a webinar sponsored by the Global Association of Risk Professionals on December […]

Avoid Jekyll and Hyde

Accurate price determination for commodities means that data must be gathered, processed and analyzed. What, then, are current best practices for data management? “Organizations are beginning to recognize their current solutions are no longer meeting current needs,” said Michal Peliwo, Vice President of Business Solutions at ZE PowerGroup.  He was the third and final speaker at a webinar on August 24, 2016, sponsored by the Global Association of Risk Professionals, titled “The Price is Right? Strategies for Market Discovery & Optimum Pricing Challenges.” Peliwo described the fragmented world of data management as it exists at most companies. “MS Excel is […]

Optimum Price a Moving Target

How was risk-taking originally priced, and has this changed over time? Centuries ago, mercantile economies used to pool risk for the trading ships that were sent out. Over time, this “big chunk risk” has given way to increasingly more precise ways of determining risk, and is now down to individual financial transactions. “Pricing is the centre of gravity of this operation,” said Robin Bloor, Chief Analyst at The Bloor Group. “For every product theoretically there is an optimum price.” Beginning with this historical comparison, he was the first of three speakers at a webinar on August 24, 2016, sponsored by […]

Data Science 2. The Roadmap

“The core concept for data science is hypothesis testing,” said Nima Safaian, team lead for Trading Analytics at Cenovus Energy. The data scientist must identify trends, generate hypotheses, and test, test test. The scientist’s bent toward hypothesis testing should be even stronger than their math skills. Safaian was speaking at the Data Science webinar on August 2, 2016, sponsored by the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP). “Attitude is everything,” Safaian said. “Think like a startup. Have an agile mindset,” he urged, referring to the books The Lean Startup by Eric Ries and The Lean Enterprise by Humble, Molesky, and […]

Data Science 1. Trading Analytics

At the end of the day, what do you produce? If you are a knowledge worker, your “product” could be something as intangible and significant as decisions. That is the thinking behind the “decision factories” discussed in Roger Martin’s seminal Harvard Business Review article. If we labour in decision factories, then we are decision engineers, and our chief raw material is data, according to Nima Safaian, team lead for Trading Analytics at Cenovus Energy. “We need the capacity to produce many good decisions,” he said at the webinar on August 2, 2016, sponsored by the Global Association of Risk Professionals […]

“Deal With It”

When it comes to technology advances in the fixed income markets in Canada, “peer-to-peer still needs some work,” said Robert Pemberton, Head of Fixed Income at TD Asset Management. His company’s client base “runs the gamut from retail right through to large investors.” Approximately two and a half million are mutual fund clients. He was the third of three panellists at a September 18, 2015, luncheon sponsored by the CFA Society Toronto, and held at the Toronto Board of Trade. Participants were commenting on regulatory changes in the fixed income markets announced the day before. Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) will […]

“A Step in the Right Direction”

“The new regulation is a solid step in the right direction,” said Steve Thom, Managing Director at RBC Capital Markets, referring to the September 17 announcement by Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) on a new reporting system. “The new regulation will increase price transparency, which is important for investors to be able to make more informed decisions. This is a good thing,” said Thom, “but the big thing is size.” He was the second of three panellists at a luncheon, sponsored by the CFA Society Toronto on September 18, 2015, to discuss changes in the fixed income markets. However, “full size transparency would […]

Fairness in Fixed-Income Markets

What are the essential building blocks of market integrity? Information, and fair access to that information. Transparency, but not onerous transparency. “There was a lack of fixed-income data, and large investors had better access to data,” said Ruxandra Smith, Senior Accountant at the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC), the first of three speakers at a luncheon sponsored by the CFA Society Toronto on changes in the fixed income markets in Canada. The event was held at the Toronto Board of Trade on September 18, 2015. Smith was referring to hot-button issues identified in the April 2015 report on the Canadian fixed […]

OTC Market 2. A New Paradigm

“How will errors be handled? That’s the biggest area of discussion with SEFs,” said Bis Chatterjee, Global Head of E-Trading and New Business Development, Credit Markets, at Citigroup Global. SEF refers to a Swap Execution Facility. He was the second of two speakers at a GARP-sponsored webinar, about changes to the over-the-counter (OTC) credit default swaps (CDS) market, held on April 15, 2014. “The market had less time than it would have liked to review various rules of the new guideline,” Chatterjee said, referring to the flurry of market response to the new regulations brought in by the US Commodities Futures […]

OTC Market 1. “It was a busy 15 months…”

Over the past fifteen months, “the biggest paradigm shift that we’ve seen in the last twenty years” has occurred, said Nathan Jenner, Chief Operating Officer at Bloomberg Electronic Trading. He was the first of two speakers at a GARP-sponsored webinar, held on April 15, 2014, about changes to the over-the-counter (OTC) market. Jenner put the changes in context:  the new legislation driving the changes arose from the 2009 G20 summit in Pittsburgh that occurred on the heels of the 2008 financial crisis. There were three areas the signatory nations wanted to focus on, he said: “reducing systemic risk, improving transparency, […]