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December 1, 2000

Group Pushes for World of Safe Stock Trading

By Staff Reports

A new group representing Wall Street trading firms is aiming to eliminate barriers to entry in the global equities markets.

The Global Equities Market Association (GEMA) says it will press regulators abroad on structures that they believe will impede the functioning of their markets for outsiders. The member firms include Salomon Smith Barney, Knight Securities, State Street Global Advisors, Bear Stearns and Bloomberg Tradebook which has deputized its director of sales Steven Bookbinder to act as co-chair.

An official at Knight said the members are all active in the global securities markets.

"They see a variety of impediments in the overseas markets that impede their operations," he said.

The GEMA was reportedly successful, for example, in convincing the regulators in Venezuela to drop plans to impose a foreign securities tax.

"The group wants to be proactive in the foreign markets," said the Knight official. "It supplements the work of other groups in the U.S."