Commentary

Tim Quast
Traders Magazine Online News

We're All HFTs Now

In this guest commentary, author Tim Quast looks back at the history of HFT and how the market has evolved to where many firms now fit the definition of high-frequency trader.

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April 30, 2001

Messages and IOls

By Peter Chapman

Sellside traders servicing institutions use the messaging services of Thomson Financial's AutEx, Bridge Information and Tradeware to communicate deals to their buyside counterparts. They send three types of messages: interest messages, super messages and advertisements.

Interest messages and supers are known as indications of interest.' They are sent to the buyside to drum up interest in a stock trade. Interest messages are simple. "IBM, large buyer" would be an example. Super messages carry more weight as they include price and quantity. "IBM, offer a million, at 93 3/4" would be an example.

If a trade is done, the broker will advertise the fact to draw attention to his muscle in a particular name. "IBM, sold a million, at 93 3/4" would be an example of an advertisement.

Advertisement quantities are aggregated, grouped into various lists, and distributed monthly by AutEx as BlockDATA reports.