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February 1, 2005

The No. 1 Trading House On Wall Street Is Named

By Peter Chapman

Instinet Group is the best trading house on the Street. At least that's according to a survey of trading quality performed by Plexus Group, the transaction cost measurement firm. Of the 30 largest broker dealers in the U.S., Instinet produced the highest "value added" scores in both Nasdaq and listed trading.

The reasons for the strong performance, according to a top Instinet executive, were the business model, the professionalism of sales traders and technology. "We don't disadvantage our customers by trading on a proprietary basis," says Natan Tiefenbrun, president of Instinet's international business, "nor do we shop merchandize without clients' permission."

Tiefenbrun added that its direct access technology was better than other agency brokers, leading to better executions for customers who self-trade. About half of Instinet's volume is self-directed, he said. For the 12 months ended Sept. 30, 2004, Plexus said Instinet posted a value added score of 17 basis points for Nasdaq trading and nine basis points for listed trading.