ViableMkts Content is designed to be entertaining, informational and provocative.


SEC Sweep Might Herald Progress In The ICO Market

by Dave Weisberger
March 2018

There was a lot of coverage of the SEC sweep on ICOs this morning, starting with the WSJ’s article: “Cryptocurrency Firms Targeted in SEC Probe”. This was followed by many others, including crypto-community coverage from CoinDesk. let’s try to separate fact from fiction.


The SEC Weighs In On Secondary Crypto Markets

by Dave Weisberger
March 2018

The open letter from the SEC to investors and platforms “that refer to themselves as “exchanges”” is an important step for them to push the crypto markets towards maturation.

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Mending Market Making: How to Reverse the Corporate Bond Dealer Slump

by Chris White
January 2018

The end of 2017 brought another year of underwhelming revenue for fixed income market-makers. While down years are common for Wall St banks, this slump in fixed income is unusually lengthy.


Brokers: You Better Watch Out, You Better Not Cry, FINRA Is Coming To Town…

by Dave Weisberger
November 2017

FINRA recently informed its member brokers that it would be conducting a review of their order routing practices. While I think that such an analysis is overdue, it should cause a great deal of consternation among broker dealers.

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Comment Letter: IOSCO – Regulatory Reporting & Public Transparency in the Secondary Corporate Bond Market

by Chris White
October 2017

We contend that transparency itself does not impair market liquidity; it is the methodology used to induce market transparency that can have a positive or adverse impact on liquidity.


Never Mind, These Are Not The Droids Orders You Are Looking For…

by Dave Weisberger
August 2017

The only way that asset managers can evaluate the cost of trading strategies is to analyze all the orders sent to the market on their behalf, in the proper context.

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If Every Trader Gets a Trophy: Why VWAP Hurts Manager Performance

by Dave Weisberger
July 2017

Equity trading has evolved into a profession, which, all too often, awards trophies to most, if not all, of the participants. Benchmarks such as VWAP and other participation based metrics are “Pass Fail” metrics that fail to encourage excellence.


Are You (User) Experienced? Fixed Income Market Evolution Requires an Evolved Desktop

by Chris White
May 2017

FIX API connectivity is starting to break the ice shelf in fixed income and push a wave of new trading platforms and data & analytic solutions into the market. Today, it has never been easier for fixed income solution providers to connect to end-users, but user adoption remains elusive because of a fundamental issue.


Let’s Make a Deal-er: Buy-Side Requirements for Price Making in Fixed Income Markets

by Anna Shtromberg & Kevin Molloy
March 2017

Throughout 2016, the topic that gained momentum in the corporate bond market was the need for the buy-side to embrace price making as a strategy. Several prominent buy-side firms claimed that they had started taking steps to shift their behavior from a pure price taker to one of a price maker by directly posting prices and responding to RFQs.

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A Tree Falls in the Forest: Illuminating the True Costs of Corporate Bond Electronic Trading

by Chris White
January 2017

It is hard to imagine today, but in the not so distant past, there was a lively debate regarding the usefulness of electronic trading in the corporate bond market. Currently, electronic corporate bond trading has not only evolved to become an essential component for secondary trading, eTrading is considered by many to be the panacea for resolving the perceived corporate bond liquidity crisis.


Sales Workflow Systems in Fixed Income: Some Assembly Required

by Ruby Saleh & Barry Goldenberg
October 2016

Without proper organization, maintenance, socialization and dissemination of critical market making data, profitable trades are missed. Given the recent performance of even the bulge-bracket corporate bond dealers, every potential money making opportunity needs to be identified and explored. But how?


When Keeping It Old School Goes Wrong: Debating Transparency in Fixed Income Markets

by Chris White
August 2016

Despite the rise of the internet, smart phones and Pokemon Go, most fixed income markets have done an excellent job of shunning technology and remaining true to their unstructured, OTC origins. Like the last uncontacted tribes in the Amazon, fixed income market participants have avoided the trappings of modern tools to preserve a naturalistic market environment where trading and valuations are based on superstition, intuition, and guess work instead of high quality data.


The bond market has 99 solutions, and 1 problem

by Chris White
July 2016

Central banking policy has had an extraordinary impact on the US corporate bond market. Over the past 8 years, the market has expanded rapidly and now stands at ~$8.5 trillion in notional size, which is almost double the size of the market in 2006 (~$4.5 trillion). As US corporations continue to utilize copious amounts debt capital to finance themselves, the US corporate bond market gradually assumes the position of being the most systemically important market in the US financial system.


The rise and fall of the hottest financial product in the world

by Chris White
July 2016

In 2007, the market for Credit Default Swaps (CDS) was on a six year journey from relative obscurity, to being the hottest financial product in the world. The outstanding notional size of the market had grown from less than $1 Trillion in the beginning of 2001, to over $60 Trillion by the end of 2007, with no signs of stopping. Almost ten years later, the outstanding size of the CDS market is hovering just over $10 Trillion, the result of eight consecutive years of decline.