Kilburn's Corner: Another Brexit aka. My Independence Day

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Last week, my homeland, Britain, voted to leave the European Union. The shock decision by the British public led the pound to plummet to a thirty one-year low and an unprecedented political crisis in the country, with both major political parties likely to have new leaders by the time the summer is out. The Brexit vote left half the country with a bitter taste in our mouths, and the rest of the world bemused. With that, and abysmal defeat by Iceland in the Euros, it was a bad week to be British.

In a special report this week, Joanne Faulkner, our European reporter, looks at the impact of the Brexit on the market data industry. The UK financial authority, the Financial Conduct Authority, FCA, said last week that UK firms will still have to comply with Mifid 2-the regulation is so far-reaching that it even impacts those outside of the EU. However, with Britain's status in relation to the EU still unclear and trading deals yet to be negotiated, market data vendors are uncertain about what the true impact may be.

And I'm afraid the bad news keeps coming as there will be another Brexit this week; after five years at Inside Market Data, I am leaving for pastures new. [Watches as the pound plummets to an all-time low]. While my exit is unlikely to cause the markets to fall worldwide, it is a bitter sweet moment for me.

When I joined the market data industry all those years ago, fresh from university, I couldn't tell my APIs from my FPGAs, my PoPs from my SLAs. One market data sourcing manager at a European bank even made me cry once because I didn't know what unit of count was. After that, I nearly quit, but I went on to find a community of people willing to pass on information, knowledge and expertise; to sit down with me and explain the complexities of the market data business (and what unit of count was); and maybe, every now and then, to vent about an unfair price increase or badly behaving data vendor. Market data isn't glamorous, and I'm pretty sure my Dad still has no idea what I write about, but the people in this industry are why I have stayed in the job as long as I have.

There are a few people I want to thank by name, but I can't because a journalist never reveals her sources. So instead I will say the following; to the market data manager who made me cry, it was hard to earn your trust, but when I did it was worth it; to the London-based global head of data with the dulcet tones who had tea with me every time I came back to London, you are my best source, a great friend and I couldn't have done it without you; to everybody at FISD, it made it so much easier to see a familiar face at every conference; to everyone I ever shared a drink with, it was a pleasure; and to my first ever mentor in journalism, I'm so lucky to have sat next to you that first day. If this sounds like a love letter, it's because it is.

Finally, as the end-of-speech music begins to play, I want to say a huge, huge, huge thank you to my editor, mentor, therapist and friend, Max Bowie. Max has had to put up with a lot from me over the years; mostly, in the form of temper tantrums because, periodically, I would want to murder a PR person. Max must have saved the lives of over a hundred PR people with his sound reasoning and patience, and in that respect, he's a hero. In all seriousness, Max is the kind of boss who inspires the best in people, and it was always my goal to become as great a journalist as he is, though in the end I failed to beat his record of ten stories in a single week. However, if someone else wants to take on that challenge, there's a vacancy open for a stellar market data journalist.

 

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