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waiting, wondering are the catch phrases of late. What will be the
eventual conclusion of the meltdown and subsequent bailout of our
Like many of you, I've been steadfast in my search for information,
watching the news, reading blogs and op-ed's about how we got into
this mess. I anxiously await our government's response. As a
homeowner and family man with a retirement plan I am keen to
understand this predicament. I also have a vested interest from a
professional sense. The event processing technology in which we
immerse ourselves is well entrenched in this same financial
community. Below I share a few thoughts
and perspectives on our troubled financial times and how it might
impact event processing technology.
Short Selling induced volatility
The idea behind short-sell trading is to sell an
asset (i.e. shares of stock) that you the seller don't really own. Then with luck the price drops, you
buy the shares at the new lower price return the shares you borrowed
and pocket the difference. Short selling
strategies are common place in equities, currencies and futures
markets and have been in use for a number of years.
Which of course came to a complete halt when the
FSA and the SEC banned short selling in an effort to
stave off market instability. The FSA's clampdown gaged only a small number financial instruments, whereas the SEC's action
more punitive, setting restrictions on 800 companies. Once those
regulatory bodies announced the crackdown the investment bank
community, hedge funds and asset managers
reluctantly scaled back their short selling strategies to comply. Short
selling is a common use-case for CEP. These recent restrictions
are a clear indication of the need for algo strategies to be
dynamically adaptable to market or regulatory conditions, whether in
short selling or other types of strategies. It's imperative that
the development tools provide the means to swiftly enable changes
All told, the
shorting restrictions were applied to those instruments that had
impact on the market's stability. Just determining the market
impact, the instability or
general volatility was an investigative research project where CEP
could have played a significant role.
is a statistical measure of the scale of
fluctuations in a price or index. By looking at historical norms, the
FSA concluded 29 stocked exceeded those historical norms and the SEC
determined it was 800. While I don't know if either regulatory body
used a CEP product they clearly could have. Used in conjunction with a
database for the historical market data, a CEP product like Apama
provides the tool set and language to rapidly construct a market impact
analysis solution with the ability to carry-out a
Leveraged induced risk
Investment banks rely
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