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Commentary

Dr. John Bates

Anyone for Tea and Sympathy with Beleaguered HFT Firms?

Guest columnist John Bates wonders if anyone feels bad for the high-frequency trading firms that are now facing lawsuits, sluggish markets and regulators.

Traders Poll

Do you expect more SEC investigations into order routing or handling?



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Dark pools don’t have to be a scary proposition.

In today’s complex markets, you have to ask yourself every day which portion of your orders needs to be traded openly, and which can wait to be filled in dark pools. What if you could see into dark liquidity, and determine how much of it is available in your stock? Watch this short video and learn the importance of understanding dark pools. Check out the other Bloomberg Tradebook videos below. For more information, visit www.bloombergtradebook.com.

Q&A

Q: Why have dark pools become such a big part of stock trading today?

A: There are a few reasons that can explain the growth in dark pools. Some of the growth comes from most dark pools executions happening at the mid point price (the price between the bid and ask), such executions save both parties a portion of the spread. Some dark pools offer unique economic models for trading, these models attract certain type of traders looking to minimize their explicit costs of trading. Also, many of the biggest dark pools are broker crossing networks where large broker dealers cross their own client’s flow before sending it to the open market. Tthis type of trading facility has been around for a very long time, it used to be called “the upstairs market” but now it’s done electronically in a dark pool.

Q: Is there a way to estimate how much of a stock’s volume will get done in dark pools?

A: It is hard to estimate this figure because every day a stock might trade differently. Bloomberg Tradebook’s Strategy Analyzer tool (STAZ) tries to estimate the amount of volume that will get done in dark pools based on a proprietary model and information from actual trading in that stock by Tradebook. Traders who use this information can bias their algorithm to trade more or less in the dark to make sure they are capturing all the liquidity they can.

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About Insight Bites in 60 Seconds

When it comes to stock trading, so much is changing so quickly it’s difficult to understand and manage all the variables. Whether it’s algorithmic trading, price swing or dark liquidity, The Insight Bites series presents concise and smart looks at what a trader can do to address and overcome the most pressing of these challenges. Hosted by Traders Magazine and brought to you by Bloomberg Tradebook, each 60 second animated videos provides quick and humorous insight into a unique issue that traders face every day. For more information, visit www.bloombergtradebook.com.