Thesys Wins CAT Bake-Off
(First published on TradersMagazine.com)
And the winner is…Thesys Technologies.
After a grueling selection process and much vetting, the self-regulatory organizations of the financial markets, which includes the New York Stock Exchange, Nasdaq and Bats Global Markets, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, selected Thesys Technologies over Sungard and Finra to build the Consolidated Audit Trail.
Originally, ten firms were vying to build the market tracking system designed to monitor and collate equity and options market data. Then last July the list of prospective builders was shortened to six and then to three in November.
SROs affiliated with a bid were recused from voting pursuant to the CAT selection Plan Amendment approved by the SEC.
Rule 513, adopted by the SEC in July 2012, required the national securities exchanges and Finra to submit to the SEC a NMS Plan (or CAT NMS Plan) to create, implement, and maintain the CAT.
The CAT is expected to help regulators track the complex machinations and microsecond dealings in the US equities and options markets and provide a data repository. This repository would be used for either research or for policing the markets in cases of suspected wrongdoing.
An SEC spokesperson declined to comment on the selection.
Now that Thesys has been selected, it can begin to build the actual system and the exchanges have upwards of one year to begin submitting trade information to the CAT.
Sell side is penciled in to cover 75% of audit trail costs.
Will 'mission creep' lead to greater dissemination of fixed income trade data?
The plan's operating committee proposes a nine-tier fee structure.
Assessing whether the Consolidated Audit Trail would have cleared the '2-for-1' bar.
Being a copycat in preparation for the CAT rollout might not be a bad thing for the sell side.