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June 30, 2003

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OMSs, Front-ends, Connectivity and Execution Venues

Vendors were out in force at this year's SIA Technology Management

Conference and Exhibit.

About 290 of them packed the hallways and ballrooms of the Hilton New York for the annual event, up from about 250 last year. At least 50 were pushing technology for traders. Attendance, however, was about 7,500, down from 9,000 last year, according to the Securities Industry Association.

On display for traders were such meat-and-potatoes necessities as order management systems, front-ends, connectivity services and execution venues.

Other tools for communications, analytics, and data gathering were also well-represented.

In the sellside OMS space, SunGard Trading Systems and NYFIX ran booths, but Royalblue was absent. In the buyside OMS space, all four of the top vendors showed up. That's Macgregor, Linedata, Charles River and Eze Castle.

Connectivity

As for front-ends, Lava, Sonic, TradeStation, Instinet, NeoNet, REDI, Townsend, and Beast Financial all manned booths.

Of those best known for their program trading, UNX, InfoReach and Portware showed up. ITG, Belzberg and FlexTrade did not.

As for connectivity, OM, Davidge, GL Trade, TradeWare, NYFIX and others held court.

In the execution space, Nasdaq talked up SuperMontage, but the New York Stock Exchange stayed home. The giant ECNs Archipelago and Instinet strutted their stuff as well.

Here is a sampling of the offerings in the booths and some observations from the panelists in a conference forum on electronic trading.

Talking Deals

French connectivity powerhouse GL Trade has signed deals with both Thomson Financial and Sonic Financial Technologies. The deals are meant to put GL's connectivity services and trading front-ends on more U.S. desktops.

The vendor of a popular international trading network will integrate its front-end GL Mosaic with Thomson Financial's Thomson ONE Equity platform. (Thomson Financial is an affiliated company of Thomson Media, which publishes Traders Magazine.) Thomson ONE Equity is the market data service formerly known as ILX. The deal gives Thomson transaction capabilities, allowing it to close the gap with competitors Bloomberg and Reuters. Thomson's move follows on the heels of a similar deal it made with CBS Marketwatch. That deal gave Thomson a newswire to match those of Bloomberg and Reuters.

As for Sonic, the provider of a popular front-end for accessing U.S. markets gets international connectivity. Sonic is trying to make inroads with large buyside shops, many of which trade internationally.

Both deals give traders access to about 75 foreign equity and derivatives marketplaces, according to Jeff Patrick of GL Trade.

Buyside order management system vendor Macgregor divulged its new alliance with front-end vendor Lava Trading. Macgregor will integrate Lava's market access technology into its XIP order management system. Macgregor is the largest vendor in the buyside OMS space. Lava is the largest vendor in the sellside market access space. The deal follows a similar arrangement between buyside OMS vendor Eze Castle and sellside front-end vendor REDIPlus. Both REDI and Lava are trying to crack the buyside market.

The additional functionality will give XIP users full depth of book, smart routing, and direct connectivity to "all major exchanges, ECNs and alternative trading systems." Deutsche Bank Asset Management is one of the first XIP customers to deploy the Lava functionality.

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