Refreshingly open and practical conversations were, for me, the key take away from this year’s European Trading Architecture Summit (ETAS).
From Tom Dalglish's extended gardening analogy during the keynote through to Stephane Malrait's rather blunt observation that in order to comply with US law, he'd have to break French law, the meat of topics and discussion at ETAS this year were a breath of fresh air. As we head into the new year, with its regulatory uncertainty still looming, the topic flavored the talks but didn't particularly override them.
More, it was the lack of resources available to financial institutions given market conditions and, of course, increased compliance. If the panels at ETAS could perhaps be summed up in one phrase, it's "How to do more with less". Hopefully all of you found it as useful as I did; from the conversations I had, it certainly seems so.
There will be more coverage from us coming this week, of course, but for readers who appreciate such things, here's a selection of current stories across Waters from the event:
SocGen Exec: Regulatory Conflict Causing Confusion at Banks
FSA: Next Year "Ambitious" for Real-Time Regulatory Reporting
CIBC's Maden: Vendors Must Find Holistic Approach
FGS Capital's Narain: Build Algos to Fail
Queen's University's Woods Says FPGAs Becoming More Accessible (video)
HSBC's Childe: Back-Testing Key to Mitigate Algo Failures
UBS' Dalglish Urges "Back to Basics" Tech Stance
Azul's Mills Advocates Infrastructure Over Speed (video)
BAML's Walker: It's Not All About Speed
FGS Capital's Jogi Narain Wary of Shorting Rules (video)
First Boston Exec: "Don't Assume Private Clouds Are Secure"
Caplin's Myles Sees Mobile Execution Apps on the Horizon (video)
UBS Exec: "Don't Centralize Processing Of Big Data"
Quite a bit, then, and some more to come. ETAS marks our last large-scale event for this year, so I'd like to take the opportunity to say thank you to everyone who has attended, spoken, sponsored, moderated, said hello, given feedback, had a booth, stayed for drinks or asked a question at our events over the last twelve months. Hopefully, we'll see you again next year.
It would be remiss of me not to mention that, following ex-UBS rogue trader Kweku Adoboli's sentencing at Southwark Crown Court last week, the Financial Services Authority (FSA) has released its penalties levied on UBS. In a joint investigation with the Swiss regulator, the FSA found serious lapses in the bank's systems and control procedures, which allowed Adoboli to mask his trades and nearly cripple the investment giant.
I talk a lot about the need for effective risk management and compliance systems in this column. It's something to think about.