TradeStation, Interactive Brokers refuse mediation in Trading Technologies patent infringement case

Maria Nikolova

According to the latest filings by TradeStation and Interactive Brokers with the Federal Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, the case is not amenable to mediation.

A follow-up to FinanceFeeds’ earlier report about Trading Technologies appealing a March decision by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) in a legal move related to the so-called “patent ‘556”, called “System and Method for Displaying Order Information in Relation to a Derivative of Price”…

In brief, the PTAB Final Written Decision dated March 31, 2017, sides with a number of online trading companies, including Interactive Brokers LLC, IBG LLC, TradeStation Group Inc, TradeStation Securities, TradeStation Technologies and IBFX. The brokers have been sued by Trading Technologies over an alleged infringement of the patent, which describes “a user interface for an electronic trading system that allows a remote trader to view trends for an item, which assists the trader to anticipate demand for an item”.

The parties in the case have filed their docketing statements, with appellees Interactive Brokers LLC, IBG LLC, TradeStation Group Inc, TradeStation Securities, and TradeStation Technologies, saying that mediation is not an option in this case.

In their docketing statement, appellees TradeStation Group, TradeStation Securities, and TradeStation Technologies, confirm that they have had settlement discussions with other parties in the case. They also state that these discussions were mediated by Judge Holderman (retired from N.D. Ill. and current JAMS mediator). And yet, TradeStation Group, TradeStation Securities, and TradeStation Technologies say that the present case is not amenable to mediation because “the parties strongly disagree about the merits of the case and are unlikely to reach agreement”.

Appellees IBG LLC and Interactive Brokers LLC also confirm that they have had settlement discussions with other parties but state that “IBG LLC and Interactive Brokers LLC do not believe that mediation would be fruitful at this time”.

In March, the Board determined that the patent claims made by Trading Technologies are directed to an abstract idea – providing a trader with financial information to facilitate market trades, which is a fundamental economic practice. All that “claim 1” encompasses, for instance, are steps that, according to the brokers and the Board, can be performed using pen and paper, or even in a trader’s mind.

The PTAB was not convinced by Patent Owner’s arguments that the claimed GUI improves the computer because it allows the computer to be used in new and inventive ways. The use of a GUI to display market information was seen as “a well-understood, routine, conventional activity that does not add significantly more to the abstract idea.”

Trading Technologies seeks Vacatur to this decision and the denying of its request for rehearing.

Appellees seek affirmance of PTAB’s decision finding patent claims to be patent-ineligible.

The case is captioned Trading Technologies Intl. v. IBG LLC (0:17-bcaag-02323).

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