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Chris - are you prepared to speculate on how a consolidated tape might be set up?
Interesting that the EU is starting to move towards a consolidated tape around the same time that many US traders have shifted away from the consolidated tape to direct exchange feeds.
On the plus side, the move in the US towards consuming direct exchange feeds has contributed to the growth of commercial off the shelf technology to aggregate and process exchange data.... i.e. once upon a time it was difficult and expensive to build a ticker
plant, now you can buy them in (fast) boxes off the shelf.
I think that the key questions today are around governance of the organisation and systems that will deliver a consolidated tape result. It's not yet clear generally about what the output of the tape would be intended for, eg would it replace direct feeds
from exchanges and MTFs or would it be an additional data service in parallel? There would be major differences in architecture between a solution that, say, was aimed at providing the "best execution" low-latency price that you could trade against electronically
and a solution that produced prices in "good time" that could be used for, say, matching off large quantities of retail orders or valuing portfolios.
In terms of moving to a consolidated tape, we don't know yet if this is a move away from direct feeds in Europe or not. Again, it will depend on what the data in the consolidated tape is intended for. A big difference between Europe and the US market is that Europe
is a lot of different countries and national financial centres, ie geography and international politics. If the "source of all data" is located in London or Paris or Frankfurt, one would have to expect 30-40 other financial centres and a couple of thousand
investment firms in other countries to complain about this.
Market participants will need to watch the changing landcsape development and make their plans as it changes. If you wait until the game is over to see what the result is - the game is over!