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January 1, 1998

STA Survey Will Be Published This Month

By Jeffrey L. Winograd

The Security Traders Association is planning later this month to publish the findings of its inaugural year-end membership survey on a range of trading and regulatory issues, according to John Tognino, president of the roughly 8,000-strong industry group.

"The survey represents an excellent opportunity to gauge members' priorities," Tognino said in a telephone interview. The survey, overseen by STA strategic consultant Laura Cooley, involved a 26-question form mailed to the entire STA membership in mid-December. Most questions required a simple yes or no answer. The emphasis was on short, concise questions to encourage strong membership participation.

The questions will no doubt help to forge common ground among groups of STA traders with distinct agendas, ranging from institutional market makers and wholesalers on the sellside, to institutional traders on the buyside. The STA made clear it is looking for areas of common agreement in the survey results.

Major Changes

Tognino noted that the past 12 months have witnessed some major changes in equity-trading practices, in particular the implementation of the order handling rules.

Tognino said the questions touched upon the use of circuit breakers that halted stock trading twice on Oct. 27; decimalization, which was the subject of two recent high-level meetings the Securities and Exchange Commission conducted with industry officials; the National Association of Security Dealers' central limit order book; and electronic communications networks.

The STA president said the results will provide a road map to help the STA board of governors develop industry positions and, as such, will be something more than fodder for Capitol Hill lobbying.