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Tim Quast
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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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August 14, 2007

More TCA on the Way

By James Ramage

A relative newcomer to trade cost measurement thinks it can get pre-trade cost analysis (TCA) to work better. Global Trading Analytics, a Jersey City, N.J.-based TCA provider, entered the fray more than two years ago and has developed TCA software for foreign exchange, fixed income and equities markets. GTA intends to launch a pre-trade product in the fourth quarter that uses current and historical data it has gathered to go beyond mere impact analysis, according to the company's president, John Halligan.

"Our approach is going to be not only defining the level of difficulty and challenge in executing a particular basket of stocks," he said, "but also suggesting ways to minimize the impact of trading that particular basket." Halligan started GTA after working at TCA firm Elkins/ McSherry. His approach to TCA has focused on transcending the standard benchmark thinking. "The whole idea is really to understand the context of (a customer's) trading, the universe that they're being compared with, and the market conditions that they encountered," he said. That was good enough for institutional broker Capital Institutional Services, who in February signed on with GTA's product.