, created. Now what?

Another site with financial industry news

Is it really necessary to create another website dedicated to the financial industry? The answer is ‘yes’ and let me explain why.

There is an overcapacity of information and opinions on the Internet and if we take a look off the virtual route, we see there are plenty of seminars, coaches and workshops. How can Broker/Dealer make a difference and be relevant to business needs?

First, there is a lot of misinformation surrounding the financial industry. It’s not easy to sift through all the commercial messages, rhetoric and lobbying efforts to find the actual useful bits. There are already some good examples out there for filtering and summarizing this information. To name a few, there’s the Lothian newsletter, Smartbriefs, and Tabb’s Forum. They however vary from the US centric to the sector specific.

From the start, Broker/Dealer positions itself in the market as a filter for a variety of information with a Eurocentric focus (which also means reporting on the US and Asia when it is relevant for Europeans). And, regardless what your direct line of business is, getting a glimpse of what’s relevant to a pension fund manager, a HFT trader, a risk manager, an exchange official, a systems engineer or a regulator can be useful to you as well. Sometimes a trend can be derived and translated to your business, and sometimes you just need to display some general knowledge at a networking event talking to someone in a completely different line of business.

Second, you need to know which opinions to discard. There are a lot of professional lobbyists, special interest groups, activists and (anonymous) forum participants. They are all defending their own little and big interests. You need to apply a filter. Above all, you will need a BS filter and a strict policy on restricting anonymous postings and the duration of discussions. If left unchecked, there will be trolling and nasty back and forth quibbles. All of which is counterproductive.

Broker/Dealer wants to lift the level of the discussion. It does so by channeling opinions and discussions for constructive thinking. This industry is too important to conduct business like we’re competing in the Hunger Games. In addition to providing the livelihood for millions, the industry is also the catalyst or damper of the global economy. There is a lot of good out there, a lot of bad and a lot that can be improved. Instead of disagreeing, finger pointing, and criticizing, we want to be the conduit to a constructive conversation. Find the middle ground and be realistic. Make the market a more inclusive place instead of trying to eliminate each other.

Third, working in this industry, you need to invest in yourself by joining seminars & workshops. This off line bit is essential to bringing the industry together and enhancing knowledge. The problem is that a lot of the content presented at seminars lacks quality. Sponsors or special interest groups dominate the content. Sponsors end up pitching their ideas to a large crowd of uninterested faces and paying for their drinks and lunch. Instead of it being a conduit to business ideas or personal growth, seminars are mostly networking opportunities. This deteriorates the quality of the participants, which in turn, ultimately deteriorates the opportunities for the sponsors.

Broker/Dealer wants to organize small events presented by high quality speakers, thought leaders and educators, who actually get paid to speak instead of paying to speak. Raise standards, improve the quality and help build a better industry. Offer a better product and venue so the sponsor can network with a select group of participants to build his business. The key is to keep it small, structured and targeted towards a constructive collaboration between businesses. We also aim to forge better connections by organizing social events with no other purpose than just the social aspect of the business.

In addition, Broker/Dealer recognizes an invaluable source of information that is relatively difficult to find on the Internet today. Broker/Dealer wants to categorize and eventually rate links to academic research and white papers conducted on the industry.The market needs a site like Broker/Dealer where you can easily find and filter the mass of material universities produce and publish annually.

Finally, we look at where we are today. We believe Broker/Dealer fills a void in today’s market and we will work hard to make it earn its place. The site has been successfully launched. The first articles have been posted and the first papers have been sorted. Currently, the first suggestions for upcoming seminars are being considered. Meanwhile, we call upon everyone whose ideas, opinions, topics, papers, links and suggestions fit Broker/Dealer’s concept to reach out to us. We’d love to connect. We welcome your thoughts and input. Also, please don’t hesitate to contact us to discuss sponsorship opportunities.


Getting the most out of yourself or your people

"“Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.” Carl Jung

Being successful in this financial industry means you've not only invested successfully in the market, but also successfully invested in yourself. Years of studying and hard work has gotten you where you are now. 

But, there's more to be gained, more from yourself and more from the people you employ. Once you understand what propels you forward or, holds you back, you can get the most out of the qualities you possess.

Psychology helps to understand what makes people 'tick'. And for the financial industry there is an expert out there with his feet firmly planted in both the world of finance and psychology. Brett Steenbarger has been working as a trading coach for several funds and is also an associate professor at SUNY in Syracuse.

If you want to self-develop your skills as a trader, it is recommended to read his books or follow his columns on Forbes or his . It's easy to read and directly applicable to our business.


Flash crasher not a flash boy

After a 5 year investigation, the CFTC finally has found someone they can tie to the infamous flash crash of of May 6, 2010. 

UK resident Navinder Sarao, a relatively small futures trader has been charged with wire fraud, 10 counts of commodities manipulation and 1 count of spoofing.

Sceptics, like Zerohedge see a 'patsy', an Oswaldesq scapegoat found to deflect blame for HFT and a failing controlling body like the CFTC. Regular media meanwhile call Sarao an HFT trader, while industry professionals are quick to point out that someone trading off a spreadsheet, using 'off the shelf' trading software from a residential house in London suburbia can by no means be considered HFT.

Perhaps Sarao was just innocently 'at the wrong place, in the wrong time', perhaps he was a petty market manipulator caught in the 'perfect storm', or even perhaps he was the perfect scapegoat working at the book depository. All these scenario's are better than the idea that a single 'nobody' can crash the market. If that's really the case, there is a serious problem with the way the market operates.