“When was the last time anyone got market data and said WOW?!” Live report from Chicago

“I am the least qualified person sitting here today talking about technology. I am not a technologist or an engineer, but I am a consumer of technology and so are each and everyone of you” – Catherine Clay, VP Business Development, Chicago Board Options Exchange Reinvention and rejuvenation of some of the entities within the […]


“I am the least qualified person sitting here today talking about technology. I am not a technologist or an engineer, but I am a consumer of technology and so are each and everyone of you” – Catherine Clay, VP Business Development, Chicago Board Options Exchange

Reinvention and rejuvenation of some of the entities within the largest institutions is most certainly on the agenda this year. Last week in Chicago, at the FinTech Exchange 2016 conference hosted by Barchart, a great deal of firms that have been established for a very long time, and even are part of the armory of some of the largest exchange technology providers in the world, are taking the view that revolution is better than evolution.

During the quickfire presentations which were aptly named the Lightning Rounds, Catherine Clay, VP Business Development at Chicago Board Options Exchange’s data and analytics service CBOE LIVEVOL,  had some very poignant developments to discuss.

“In many areas of our lives we have come to expect the products and services that we use daily to know what we want” she said.

“I am a consumer of data and it is clear that most of us know what we want, when we want it and how we want it delivered to us” said Ms. Clay.

“Think about when you log into your internet account. How it knows you. It knows your orders, knows your interests and it will predict your next purchase. Imagine if there was a time at which you log into your Amazon account and it has no memory of your recent orders, and it is not suggesting any products to you and it doesn’t have any filters anymore from past product inventory. Imagine how frustrating that experience would feel, very unnatural” Ms. Clay posed the scenario.

“When looking at the universe of ever expanding market data, why don’t we expect a more Amazon like experience with market data and analytics? I mean really when was the last time anyone here got some market data aand said wow how easy it was to get and what a great experience it was. This is how it should be” – Catherine Clay, Catherine Clay, VP Business Development, Chicago Board Options Exchange

With regard to market data and analytics, there are several challenges within the derivatives market.

“There are so many options quotes being delivered, the number is staggering. 293 billion quotes were produced across all exchanges in February alone. If we take a look at the number of series listed from 1998 to current, the trend is going higher and higher, and we are only going to see more and more data” explained Ms. Clay.

“With regard to data aggregated by exchanges, we are approaching 1 million listed series. Why does this matter? Well, if you are a trader in the options world, there are more and more series across more and more options exchanges that you have to scan to find the opportunities. Think of the data you have to filter to achieve a good set of criteria that is useful.”

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Catherine Clay of CBOE LIVEVOL with Andrew Saks-McLeod, demonstrating the new Data Shop platform

“If you are a trader and rely on analytics, your first obstacle remains the storage and handling of all this data. How many messages come up per second is vital information, for example. This is all part of the ‘big data’ problem. it is a word that is thrown around a lot lately but it really is very important and at CBOE LIVEVOL we are set to do some great things with it” enthused Ms. Clay.

“Before I get you to the solution that I promised to talk about, I would like to give you a little bit of history” she said. “LIVEVOL was started in San Francisco and was based there until last August when we were acwuired by CBOE. We built the company on the back of a great analytics platform which hosts data and analytics in one platform.”

“In 2006, this was cutting edge and very much in demand, but fast forward to today where the consumption landscape has really changed in the way that we receive information, and the warehousing and storage requirements are unbelievable” recalled Ms. Clay.

Some companies which are large, established companies that decide to go back to operating as a startup in order to modernize and innovate, we were a startup at a crossroads. Catherine Clay, Catherine Clay, VP Business Development, Chicago Board Options Exchange

“Making a decision to go down the revolutionary route, we could have either stayed with the status quo and continued to house the data, and continue to focus on platform delivery, or we could have decided to radically change the way we store and change our strategy to deliver the data and analytics in a myriad of ways.”

“Anyone who currently works at a startup, or has ever worked at a startup, will know how big this decision was for us. When you are a startup with limited resources, every development dollar demands our life. The top priority is growing the company so to even think about deviating from immediate payoff to redo the entire architecture is a very big decision” said Ms. Clay.

Here is where we are heading

We are committed to the continuity of our analytics and trading platforms, but this new open architecture, distributed cluster, unstrutured data has allowed us to do some great things. Next week (tomorrow – ed) we are going to unveil our new customized data website, which leverages our architecture so that people can get custom data” she said. “When I say custom, I really mean custom. Many vendors offer end of day files, one minute files, but what about 10 second or 20 second intervals?”

This open architecture allows for greater options when it comes to partnerships

“Tuesday will be a day when youll be able to log on, create an account, create an order with exactly the data you want. We, like other data analytics institutions such as CME, delivered data very differently in the past. This new website will remember your orders, will recommend what you might like, as it will recognize what you have ordered in the past. Surveillance, regulation, operations, and other factors requires people to be able to customize their ruleset over the data universe and come up with easy to read results.”

“Finally, one of the best thigns about the decision we made in 2014 to get away from our original architecture and expand our business strategy is that it really has opened the doors for us to be able to partner with many different people, and we will be announcing some great new partner campaigns and are looking for new partners to use our products, APIs and the new Data Shop site” concluded Ms. Clay.

CBOE LIVEVOL Data Shop goes live tomorrow, April 26 and was exclusively unveiled by FinanceFeeds in Chicago.

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