Latency becomes critical for Forex brokers: new survey

With latency becoming a key issue now that Forex brokers move to STP execution rather than Market Making it is

latencyheader_lWith latency becoming a key issue now that Forex brokers move to STP execution rather than Market Making it is interesting to see the results of the latest StreamBase survey.

latency: (computer science) the time it takes for a specific block of data on a data track to rotate around to the read/write head.

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From Forex perspective that means execution time: how long it takes from the click on order execution and until you receive a confirmation that the order was actually executed. It is also probably the issue that gets the most complains from Forex traders.

For Market Makers this issue doesn’t exist as they choose whether to accept the trade or not, and are not dependent on latency issues.

Full survey results:

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StreamBase announced today the results of its “FX Trading and Technology Trends in 2009” survey. Participants included over 200 buy- and sell-side individuals who are actively trading FX.

“The survey results indicate that innovation in electronic FX trading is on the rise and that more and more firms are looking to improve their speed of trade executions, largely through the implementation of low latency technologies,” said independent analyst Bob Giffords. “Spending in these areas appears to be increasing as firms begin to connect to more venues and advance the sophistication of their trading infrastructure,” he explained.

Key findings of the 2009 FX Trading and Technology Trends report include:

– 89.6% of firms plan to increase spending on low latency technologies in the next 18 months
– 64.6% execute FX trades electronically in order to improve execution speed
– 47.7% of firms plan to change or add electronic FX venues, primarily for better pricing
– 68.7% use algorithms for their FX trading or plan to do so
– Access to liquidity is the single most important selection criteria for choosing an FX trading platform

“This survey confirmed that electronic trading in foreign exchange is rife with opportunity. A technology arms race has begun in FX and automated, low-latency trading is the main battlefield in that race,” said Mark Palmer, Chief Executive Officer of StreamBase Systems. Palmer continued, “CEP is rapidly becoming the defacto application development platform to quickly build, deploy, and evolve automated FX trading applications. We’re seeing a broad range of CEP applications in FX including those for real-time, aggregated market data management, FX price targeting, algorithmic trading and multi-venue FX execution.”

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