TradeTech: Keep it simple

There are many moving parts to the modern trading desktop, and it is easy to get lost in the complexity of multiple trading screens and data feeds. However, market participants need to step back and assess what tools they need to optimise their performance.

This is one of the key messages at the fireside chat – How can you achieve a modern desktop experience while maximising your existing investments?  Although in an ideal world, traders may want to start from scratch, the reality is that is impossible.  A better way forward is to leverage what they already have and ensure that systems are interoperable which will enhance performance.

Adam Toms

It doesn’t have to be that complicated, according to Adam Toms, CEO of OpenFin Europe. “Simplicity should be the name of the game,” he says. “Legacy systems are not going away and there need to be processes and systems to link the old and new worlds. For example, many firms operate with a suite of computer languages and there need to be adapters in place that allow the old and new languages to talk to each other.”

Sam Ratcliff.

Fellow panelist Sam Ratcliff, head, execution technology, Man Group, also stresses the importance of collaboration. “The main driver for traders is to understand where they can deliver the biggest bang for their buck,” he says. “They should be looking at their existing systems, coupled with trading strategies, to identify where they can make marginal changes, collaborate and integrate new technology into older systems.”

Jane Buchan.

The ongoing challenges of data were also highlighted in the panel as well as the one that followed – How to best source and apply data that is fully transparent and predictive into your investment process that allows for a deeper understanding of market behaviour and how can this drive trading performance. Although the lack of quality in data sets has been well documented, Jane Buchan, CEO of Martlet Asset Management notes that the problem remains one of the biggest obstacles to achieving optimal outcomes.

The picture has become even more blurred due to the growing demand for environment, social and governance (ESG) and sustainability research. As demand has exponentially grown for these types of funds, portfolio managers need the right data sets to unearth the most sustainable companies.

This is much easier said than done. It is still a nascent area and countries have different disclosure requirements. Europe is out in front with the EU Taxonomy and Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation, but the US is still lagging behind.

“Although there is a lot of talk about integrating ESG into the investment process, it varies across jurisdictions depending on the information available,” says Buchan. “For example, not every company will, or has to, disclose how many women are in the C suite and this makes it difficult for firms who run global portfolios.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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