The market data vending machine: The pros and cons of self-service procurement

Brokers and exchanges have begun rolling out “self-service” portals that allow clients to choose data and services on an a la carte basis. Opinions vary on whether they are the Holy Grail or a poisoned chalice.

For market data management professionals, it’s the Holy Grail: being able to buy the data you want, when you want it, and pay for what you use, rather than paying a fortune for always-on, voluminous datafeeds or bundled services of which a firm uses a fraction.

While pay-as-you-go pricing is not yet a reality, some data providers—notably, among brokers and exchanges—are laying the foundation by providing “self-service” portals where clients can subscribe to content and services without having

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