The TRADE is delighted to introduce the illustrious shortlist for one of the biggest awards of our Editors’ Choice range: the closely fought category of Outstanding Equities Trading Venue. In a competitive and crowded landscape, numerous players stand out and this year it was particularly hard to whittle down the longlist. The nominated venues have all stood out over the past year for their innovative approach and outstanding performance: read on to learn more about Aquis Exchange, Cboe Europe, Euronext, Nasdaq European Markets and Turquoise.
Aquis has seen a year of strong growth, both on its lit platform and with its entry into the dark pool space, following on a promising 2021 performance – last year net revenue reached £16.2 million, representing a growth of 42% on the year prior.
In April 2022, Aquis Exchange assumed the dark pool activities of UBS MTF, with the service now known as Aquis Matching Pool (AMP). Since then, the exchange has been focused on migrating AMP onto its in-house technology, with the migration concluding in September.
The exchange has also enhanced its Auction on Demand (AoD) service on both the UK and EU platforms. AoD now supports mid-pegged orders, offers a choice of Day orders or ‘Good for Auction’, and allows members to specify a Minimum Acceptable Quantity.
Meanwhile, the Market at Close (MaC) order type grew in market share, from constituting 3.4% of European closing auctions in July 2021 to 5.8% in July 2022.
It has also grown its membership base, with new members such as Optiver and others joining; while in May this year it entered into a collaboration with BMLL to provide insights into market structure dynamics. Through the collaboration and use of BMLL’s Level 3 Data and analytics, Aquis is now able to monitor and evidence liquidity dynamics, and offer its members third-party, independent verification of passive liquidity’s availability on its own venues compared to other European exchange.
The past 12 months have been a landmark period for Cboe Europe. In equities, it became Europe’s largest stock exchange by market share in April 2022 for the first time since January 2019, and has been the largest stock exchange by market share every month since June 2022, with an overall European equities market share of 24.7% in July 2022 – its highest share since January 2016.
EuroCCP, Cboe’s wholly owned pan-European clearing house, provides clearing services for CEDX. Beyond its diversification into equity derivatives clearing, EuroCCP has also demonstrated solid performance in cash equities, where it remains the most-connected CCP in Europe, offering equities clearing services to 47 trading venues. It has seen strong gains in preferred clearing, with over 14% of total cash equity volumes on Euronext’s exchanges in Amsterdam, Brussels, Lisbon and Paris cleared via EuroCCP through this model as of 30 June, up from 2% at the start of the year.
Cboe Europe also deserves a mention for its thought-leadership role, supporting and advocating (often vocally) within the industry on a wide range of issues. It recently collaborated with trade associations on a statement of principles for establishing an EU equity consolidated tape, for example, an issue on which its supportive position is well-known.
The exchange is also working to make pan-European market data more accessible. For example, making its own data available via the cloud, which means lower infrastructure costs for those consuming it. Other key developments throughout the year include the appointment of Nick Dutton, Cboe Europe’s Chief Regulatory Officer, to the FCA’s Secondary Markets Advisory Committee and the group’s membership of the Sustainable Trading initiative in May.
The biggest pan-European exchange, connecting seven markets across the continent, Euronext had a strong year over 2021-22 with surging trading volumes and a series of successful acquisitions.
The group saw its trading revenue swell to €465.3 million in 2021, driven by its completed acquisition of Borsa Italiana from the London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG) in April. In its fourth quarter and full year results, the exchange operator confirmed a 27% growth of trading revenues, alongside yield management in cash trading offsetting lower volumes compared with 2020. Fixed income trading revenue also increased to €65.8 million driven by a 45% growth year-on-year in its MTS cash trading activities.
The strong performance has continued – trading revenues more than doubled in the first quarter, despite the adverse geopolitical conditions, while the second quarter saw trading revenues jump a further 15% with robust performance across all asset classes.
In June this year, Euronext also entered into an agreement with Nexi for the acquisition of the former’s technology businesses, which currently powers Euronext’s fixed-income trading platform MTS and Euronext Securities Milan. Thanks to the acquisition of Borsa Italiana Group, Euronext now also operates its own clearing house, Euronext Clearing (ex. CC&G), that is planned to provide clearing services for all its markets starting from 2024, and added a fourth CSD (ex. Monte Titoli) to its network of CSDs, Euronext Securities, in a further move to leverage its integrated value chain.
Nasdaq European Markets
Nasdaq’s European Markets delivered a record year in 2021, solidifying Nasdaq’s position as a leading European listings hub with 219 new equity listings, including a record number of 174 IPOs, raising a total of €13.5 billion. Nasdaq has kept this position into 2022, and even strengthened it as its Swedish Growth Market First North overtook AIM as Europe’s hottest market for growth stocks with a strong participation by retail investors. A contributing factor to the success of the Nordic exchanges is Nasdaq´s ability to attract small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to go public on its First North markets, which enables them to grow and perform better and eventually transfer to one of the Main Markets (as around 95% of its listed growth companies do).
On the trading side, building on the strong momentum of 2020, Nasdaq saw trading volumes hit all-time highs, with equity trading increasing 7.1% to a daily average of just under €4 billion across all markets in 2021. Throughout the turbulence of the pandemic, increasing geopolitical tensions and the war in Ukraine, Nasdaq has maintained a market share of 77% of lit and auction trading in its listed shares, while continuing to reinforce its leadership in the Nordic derivatives market, including Norway, where Nasdaq has achieved a 76% market share in single stock options and +50% on index options.
Throughout 2021, Nasdaq launched a number of products and services to further support the trading community: including options on the OMXS30 ESG index, the world’s first Carbon Removal price Index with Puro.Earth, and Nasdaq Derivatives Academy, a free educational course aimed at retail investors keen in learning more about derivatives trading. Additionally, Nasdaq has entered numerous strategic partnerships – one of which is creating an exchange system simulation service based on Sequitor technology, enabling the trading community to back-test and optimise their systems in terms of both risk and performance in private sessions.
Turquoise and its EU venue, Turquoise Europe, complement London’s primary markets with multiple additional execution channels and liquidity, offering a broad universe of more than 4,100 securities with access to enter prices and trade securities of 19 major European and emerging markets as well as US stocks, IOB Depositary Receipts, ETFs and European Rights Issues, through one interface to its LSEG data centre and membership.
Turquoise Plato participants have traded more than €1.3 trillion of equities since its launch and continue to set new records. Average daily value traded in the first half of this year through Turquoise Plato neared €1.2 billion, and saw a record trade size of €27 million in December 2021 on Turquoise Plato Block Discovery.
Turquoise has spear-headed in a number of innovations this year, together with its customersits customers. Turquoise CDS Plus was launched in partnership with Simudyne, with the aim to be a one-stop shop for next generation high fidelity market simulation and algo testing. For the first time, clients can perform fully interactive testing as if it were on the live market, focusing on robust and repeatable performance testing rather than backdated conformance testing. CDS Plus uses the previous day’s tick data from Turquoise, enriched with stylised facts, making use of next generation Agent Based models which can be used to improve algorithm development, testing and benchmarking.
Turquoise is also collaborating with M-DAQ, a leading global FX specialist, on a new service for investors who, through their brokers, will be able to execute cross-currency securities transactions and settle in their currency of choice (subject to regulatory approval). M-DAQ will contribute its patented product Trading the Right Chart (TRC). This complements well the capabilities of Turquoise, removing the need for multilateral relationships and reduces FX operational risk faced by brokers, delivering further efficiencies to equity capital markets and better outcomes for end investors.
Appital, the equity capital markets technology solution, and Turquoise have also launched Appital Turquoise BookBuilder. This is the first buyside to buyside bookbuilding platform to give institutional investors the opportunity to proactively source liquidity. By bringing a historically highly manual and opaque process into an automated, electronic platform, they gain control over the entire bookbuilding process. Buyside firms benefit from liquidity discovery and price formation opportunities for illiquid equity positions, as well as the ability to execute large volumes on the regulated Turquoise MTF, often in multiple days’ ADV, with minimal market impact or risk of price erosion. Turquoise also became the first venue to connect to OpenFin in September 2021, offering a direct data feed to the buy-side via its operating system.
Recently, Turquoise expanded its service with a newly enlarged US segment, which will allow global investors to trade in a greater number of US stocks through one connection, alongside UK, Swiss and European securities. The new offering improves access for investors in Asia and other geographies around the globe. In August 2022, Turquoise also received Recognised Market Operator status from the Monetary Authority of Singapore, enabling firms located in Singapore to apply for TGHL membership and access TGHL trading service.
The winner will be announced at the Leaders in Trading 2022 gala awards dinner at The Savoy Hotel on 3 November. For table enquiries, please contact Nathan Anacleto.