People Moves Monday: Bringing you up to speed

The past week saw appointments from Citi, BestEx Research, the FCA, Kepler Cheuvreux and departures from UBS and BlockFi.

Citi promoted Amit Raja as its new regional head of markets for EMEA. Raja was appointed to the role after serving as the bank’s head of credit markets trading in EMEA since 2017 as well as senior manager for global spread products trading. During this time, he was instrumental in leading efforts to transform the division’s risk and controls structure and implement new governance frameworks to manage the business. He will join Citi’s EMEA operating committee and become a senior manager for markets for the bank’s UK legal entities, pending regulatory approval.

Execution algorithm provider BestEx Research appointed Paul Merolla as general counsel amid expansion plans for the US-based firm. Merolla brings over four decades’ worth of experience to the role, having most recently served as a partner at legal firm Murphy & McGonigle for 11 years, as well as nearly four years as partner at LeClairRyan. Prior to that, he served as executive vice president and general counsel at Instinet Group, now a Nomura company. Before Instinet, Merolla served as vice president and associate counsel at Goldman Sachs. Based in BestEx Research’s headquarters in Stamford, Connecticut, Merolla will report directly to founder and CEO, Hitesh Mittal.

HM Treasury appointed Ashley Alder as chair of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), effective January 2023. Alder currently serves as chief executive officer of the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) in Hong Kong and has held that position since 2011. Expected to begin serving as FCA chair in January next year, Alder has been appointed for a five-year term.

Kepler Cheuvreux bolstered its economics and cross-asset strategy and institutional research teams with a range of new appointments including various new team heads. Arnaud Girod was appointed as head of economics and cross-asset strategy, having been promoted to the role after serving as co-head of institutional research at the firm for the last eight years. Alongside Girod, Philippe Ferreira was appointed as deputy head of economics and cross-asset strategy and will work closely Girod. Meanwhile, Natalia Bobo was appointed as co-head of institutional research, bringing over 25 years’ experience as a sell-side analyst to the firm. Elsewhere, Marco Baccagilo was appointed as co-head of institutional research and head of primary research.

UBS Group’s co-head of CEEMEA credit trading, Dean Cooper, is moving from London to Dubai to join Millennium Management, according to a report from Bloomberg. Cooper will report to Goldman Sachs alumnus Akash Patel, who joined the hedge fund in 2021 as senior portfolio manager. Cooper’s appointment comes as part of a hiring spree by the firm, which recently also brought Morgan Stanley electronic trader, Grant McAllen, onboard.

Digital assets-focused investment firm BlockFi’s head of US trading, Jason Wilkinson, departed the firm after just over two years. Wilkinson originally joined the firm in January 2020 and was responsible for overseeing BlockFi’s US trading team. He joined from Two Rivers Trading Group, where he served as a senior trader for just over a decade. At time of publication, Wilkinson had not revealed where he will be moving to next.