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The Future of Trading

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10 Top CIOs on Wall Street

November 4, 2010
By John Hintze

Collapsing margins – but serving customers better. Integrating complex platforms – then setting up standard-setting data centers, out of fresh cloth. Here’s how 10 top CIOs became the best on Wall Street.


Duncan Rawls, JPMorgan Chase

Steve Sadoff, Knight Capital

Tom Miglis, Citadel Investment Group

Edwin Marcial, Intercontinental Exchange

Jim Rosenthal, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney

Steve Rubinow, NYSE Euronext

Michele Trogni, UBS

Steve Bonanno, Direct Edge

Jeffrey Birnbaum, Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Thomas Frank, Interactive Brokers Group


One Client, One Firm, One View


Duncan Rawls

Chief Technology Officer

JP Morgan Chase

Duncan Rawls became JPMorgan Chase's chief technology officer for the prime brokerage business after the bank's March 2008 acquisition of Bear Stearns-at the behest of the Federal Reserve-where he held the same title since 1999.

He had his work cut out for him.

Suddenly, Rawls and a team of high-ranking technologists from the two firms were charged with bringing Bear's top-tier prime brokerage business into the J.P. Morgan fold. Thus, began a back-office integration-through one of the most tumultuous times ever in global financial markets-that is the foundation for providing prime brokerage and other bank clients with an array of new global technology-driven services.

Integration difficulties could have prompted skittish hedge funds to jump to other prime brokers.

That left little room for error when Rawls and other top executives set about choosing the best applications from each firm's back and middle offices and consolidating them on a single platform.

In addition, "Cross referencing common J.P. Morgan and Bear Stearns client-account data and pulling that together onto a central platform was a tremendous undertaking," Rawls says.

Bear's back-office processing engine was chosen over J.P. Morgan's system Then after 18 months of selecting applications, development, and testing, the back- and middle-office application suites supporting cash equities, prime services and the private bank were merged in August 2009.

Over the summer J.P. Morgan launched a custom global portfolio-swap system. It gives clients the economic effect of the swap without having to hold the underlying securities, synthetic transactions favored by customers in Asia and Europe.

On the front end, a new portal has combined Bear business logic with J.P. Morgan technology, enabling customers to view positions across equities, options, futures and some OTC derivatives. The portal now provides a consolidated post-trade view.

"One client, one firm, one view, across all our business lines is the overarching goal" Rawls says.

Earning Trust Every Day


Steve Sadoff

Chief Information Officer

Knight Capital

When Steve Sadoff joined Knight Trading Group in April 2002, the market-making giant was in the doldrums.

Along with the deflating Internet bubble, Knight’s stock price was plummeting. The firm may have pioneered the electronic execution of retail orders, by automatically executing orders regardless of quote size at the national best bid and offer. But its CEO and co-founder, Ken Pasternak, had just left.

Enter Sadoff, to take automation further, by replacing the fingers that actually made markets, in those days.

At the time, even though Knight helped usher in the 1990s online trading revolution, that mainly by cutting out the order-taking broker. Knight still had 1000 live traders making markets, to establish prices in stocks and make sure there was always a countervailing order.

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