Regulating HFT in US Fixed Income markets
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The recent report by the US regulators on the high levels of volatility in US treasury market on October 15 last year has raised almost as many questions as it has answered, not necessarily because it is controversial, but because this is an area that required greater attention from both regulators and market participants. This report can be seen as a part of an on-going process in the industry to improve its capabilities to handle the advanced technology being used for trading today. One of the recommendations of the report was to have new registration requirements for automated traders. In a market where most leading participants and new tech-savvy entrants are using advanced high frequency trading technology, mere registration would not deter or suffice. The emphasis should be on revamping the risk management protocols and the regulators' risk management and surveillance systems. The regulators also touch upon these issues in their report when they stress that there were a number of factors at play in the wild swing on October 15. Hence, it is important to focus on this aspect than create deterrents for new or innovative market participants.