Barclays Posts Low-Touch Orders on Bloomberg
Traders Magazine Online News, November 27, 2012
The buyside can now have its low-touch orders advertised real-time on Bloomberg's IOIA network.
This new functionality allows institutional investors and brokers to view Barclays trading activity in a [ desired stock, not only in the aggregate but also broken out by high-touch and low-touch execution channels, throughout the trading day.
High-touch orders or portions of unfilled orders sent by the buyside were already being posted on the network, according to Bill Bell, global head of equities electronic distribution at Barclays. The new functionality is expected to boost liquidity and block trading, he added.
"In a low-volume trading environment, clients are even more focused on finding natural liquidity," Bell said. "The purpose of this is to let clients find liquidity, reduce fragmentation and make trading more efficient. Finding block liquidity is really at a premium."
Flow from Barclays' electronic equities desk previously had been posted on a T+1 basis and incorporated into the high-touch volume after the close of trading. Posting both volume figures on Bloomberg throughout the trading day provides clients with a more accurate picture of trading activity, Barclays says.
The new functionality is voluntary, Bell added. Clients can opt out of having all flow advertised or choose on an order-by-order basis.
"Some buysiders might want to stay anonymous, and this allows them to remain that way," he said. Upwards of 95 percent of Barclays' clients have opted to advertise their low-touch order flow on IOIA.
As a result, Barclays said it has seen its trading volume rise 17 percent so far this quarter for both high- and low-touch executions compared to the prior quarter.
Anthony Pallone, Barclays' head of equities electronic distribution Americas, said that the buyside has seen its role shift from execution trader to a liquidity hunter as liquidity has evaporated.
"We think this is a trend - the buyside has been breaking out its order flow from high-touch to low-touch," Pallone said. "Across the Street, low-touch is now two to three times the order flow we see when compared to high-touch volume."
The order advertising went live this month.
Barclays' electronic trading desk executions are posted to Bloomberg's IOIA and RANKA screens. When users drill down from the Barclays acronym "BARC," the electronic volume will be identified by the acronym "BCET" and the high-touch cash volume will be identified by "BCAP."
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