Pipeline, an agency broker and block trading venue operator, has confirmed that it plans a full launch of its system in Europe on 26 May.
From next Thursday, Pipeline will offer the Block Board multilateral trading facility (MTF), which flags block crossing opportunities in stocks that are being watched by the platform's members.
According to Marcus Hooper, executive director, Pipeline Europe, the MTF will have over 100 clients from launch, with around a 50/50 split of buy- and sell-side participants. He added that the vast majority of buy-side clients were long-only asset management firms.
When using the Block Board, members are alerted to potential trading opportunities with one of three flags: an orange flag, which indicates live available liquidity at the mid-point, without revealing buy/sell direction or quantity to the trading counterparty; a yellow flag that indicates that a match is available to parties that have live orders, but not at the mid-point; and a black flag, which indicates to a trader that there is a potential match but with a smaller quantity than desired. The minimum size of an order in Pipeline is around 0.5% of the average daily value traded of a stock, but users have the ability to specify a larger minimum acceptable quantity.
Currently in Europe, Pipeline offers the Algorithmic Switching Engine, a service that uses predictive technology to select the most appropriate strategy from a variety of externally-supplied algorithms. Following the introduction of the Block Board next Thursday, the switching engine will be used to execute residual portions of orders that remain after the execution of a large trade.
Dark trading in Europe continues to grow, with non-displayed liquidity surpassing 5% of overall equity trading volumes in April, according to data vendor Thomson Reuters.