The year 2009 is almost gone, and trading has been fairly quiet as usual during the last weeks. Plenty of time to look back on the events of 2009.

All Options to buy Saen Options

One of the few main events this year happened straight in the first month. January 28th the market maker All Options announced to take over rival firm Saen Options. The latter had experienced a troubled 2008 due Volkswagen positions, and All Options was happy to buy some television airtime with the Beursplein 5 former trading pit.
Clan warfare remained low among traders, but the merged firm fired scores of employees in the fall of 2009, including some well known senior positions. The results of All Options didn’t benefit however, and the traders will receive no bonus over 2009.

AEX drops to 1995 levels
A great buying opportunity happened end of february / beginning of march this year. The AEX index dropped below the 200 points level, last seen in July 1995. As we all know, the financial melt down didn’t occur, and the index climbed some 72% to levels above the 330.

Van der Moolen early signs of trouble followed by bankruptcy
Analyzing the VDM quarterly report with some general derivative trader common sense was the first post on this company. Still patting myself on my shoulder re-reading my post on their weird dividend losses. One month later it turned out the balance sheet of the firm clearly carried some obvious weak spots. Traders left the firm to form Caerus Trading, and a few weeks later VDM was dead and buried. Other remains of the firm continue in several new ventures.

OptiverBinck deal still allowed

The initiative by Optiver and Binck to route all Dutch retail flow straight to the books of Optiver did absolutely gain momentum this year. The market maker lobby couldn’t reach a consensus and has no opinion on the largest and most dangerous threat to the rest of the market. The financial watchdog AFM and other relevant institutions don’t interfere (yet). Nobody trusts Optiver, and Optiver won’t trust their employees. Mobile phones are banned at the office.

Last & least

And, last and least, this site Amsterdamtrader will see it’s very first anniversary next week. Thanks to everyone who helped with content and grammar in the posts, thanks to the contributors in the comments and the visitors of course. Everyone is invited for the Amsterdamtrader-one-year-anniversary party on January 8th in the Beurs van Berlage. Cheers!