Japanese investment bank Nomura has made several hires to its US-based global portfolio trading team, including two former Merrill Lynch directors.
Joe Sokolowski, previously head of centralised risk and portfolio risk trading at Merrill Lynch, joins Nomura as head of principal risk and trading and will be responsible for facilitating execution of client portfolios through competitive at-risk bids.
Fellow ex-Merrill director Mark Govoni also joins the firm as head of US program sales trading and index analytics. At Merrill Lynch, Govoni held positions in agency and risk trading, as well as program and electronic trading.
William O’Brien, currently a Nomura sales trader, will also be charged with leading the firm’s quantitative advisory effort, focusing on providing consulting services to clients on all aspects of the investment process from alpha generation, risk management and trade implementation. Prior to joining Nomura, O’Brien held positions at J.P. Morgan, Deutsche Asset Management and PanAgora Asset Management.
Lastly, Gerald Casey, an ex-Lehman and Barclays Capital portfolio sales trader, has been appointed as executive director, head of the international portfolio sales team in New York.
In September 2008, Nomura purchased the European and Asian assets of failed US investment bank Lehman Brothers. After building its European and Asian profile further since the acquisition, the bank has now targeted the US as its next area of growth.
Barclays Capital, which bought the North American operation of Lehman Brothers, is now ramping up its European equities trading capabilities after building its US division.
“Program trading was the first product we launched in the US, and was tremendously successful in its first year, especially as an integrated part of our international equities business,” said Ciaran O’Kelly, senior managing director and head of equities for the Americas, Nomura, in a statement. “The traders and sales people named today have already made substantial contributions and will continue to lead our client business as we develop the full range of equity products.”