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In an electronic world, the trading floor still has a place

Over at Seeking Alpha, Ray Pellecchia from Nyse offers a nice little lesson on the dangers of putting all your eggs into the e-trading basket.

A couple of days ago, before the market opened, a customer sent thousands of orders in a lightly traded stock by mistake. If the Nyse operated a purely electronic market the orders would have sailed through, leaving a fair amount of mess to clear up.

But because the exchange has a physical trading floor, the error was spotted by an eagle-eyed designated market maker. The opening was held while the customer was contacted and the order cancelled.

Traditional exchanges are facing fierce competition from all-electronic rivals on both sides of the Atlantic. These new kids on the block have taken significant market share by offering low prices and low latency but technology can't do everything and the human touch still has its place.

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Comments: (2)

Iosif Itkin
Iosif Itkin - Exactpro - London 21 August, 2009, 17:51Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

I think technology can do it. An advanced electronic surveillance system should be responsible for spotting such anomalies, alerting market control and enabling them to take appropriate actions.  The question is whether solutions that are currently available satisfy these requirements

Anthony Cossey
Anthony Cossey - Fixnetix ltd - London 24 August, 2009, 10:50Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

let's not forget the open outcry system is also open to abuse by the floor traders.......somewhat of a double edged sword.