mathematics-878124_640Less than twenty years ago, a trading jacket and a badge was all you need to trade at the option market. During the open outcry era, youngsters fresh from secondary school showed up in the pit.

Some did remarkable well without a university degree. They started on the trading floor aged 18. For instance, there’s this succesful hedgie, the recruiter and the husband-of-a-celebrity.

Homework at the gymnasium

Short introduction to two guys who haven’t even finished secondary school yet. Almer Staal and Joseph Haanstra from Zwolle Gymnasium decided to write a schoolpaper about high frequency trading.

The curious thing is they decided to go for some interviews for a better understanding of HFT. Don’t know how they did it, but they had coffee with almost everyone in the HFT industry. Everyone was happy to help. They even participated in the FOW Event in Amsterdam last week.

Not only Flash Boys

It’s not an academic piece of work. But it’s good. They didn’t stick to the usual documentaries and Flash Boys. They dug deeper. Most regular journalists could learn a lot from these 17 year olds.

If you’re after juicy quotes from industry captains, no luck. The quotes are gone, as are the names of people who helped them out. Although the family style photo survived. People were helpful, but didn’t have the wish to give national interviews. Can imagine. as source

More than a dozen pages from this website are used as source in their 68 pages work. At times this websites receives attention from great newspapers. However, the idea some people use the content of Amsterdamtrader for a school paper, makes me feel good about myself (seriously). Never remotely considered the possibility.

Other news

Teeboom at FIA EPTA

Piebe Teeboom will be the successor of Johannah Ladd as the new secretary general at proprietary trading lobby FIA EPTA. The news was released by the lobby group two weeks ago.
Curiously, Teeboom is from the ranks of the Dutch financial watchdog, the AFM. That makes him at home in the international regulatory landscape. And all the corresponding acronyms (CRD, Emir, Mifid etc). Until April 1st he’ll maintain a low profile without interviews, as he’s still employed by the AFM.

England says no to bonus cap

The Bank of England and the FSA in Great Brittain had another look at capped bonuses. This is proposed under the European rules (capped at one year salary, with lot of restrictions).

The BOE assumed fixed pay will rise, leading to more risk for smaller firms. They told the European Banking Authority (EBA) they won’t comply with the bonus rules. The rules should be proportionate. Hundreds of firms are exempt.

Our island, our rules. In case of a Brexit, we would miss this reasonable island. Just think of Belgium and their destructive speculatietaks

Back to the crowd

If you’re getting sentimental of open outcry trading, there’s good news. The annual “floor trading drinks” will be organized again. Cat is currently looking for sponsors. See here for more information. Or ask Cat.

Back in the days the trading wasn’t very efficient. But everyone will agree it looked a lot more interesting. Also always worth a visit Etienne Jong’s archive with hundreds of photo’s.