Summit Notebook

Exclusive outtakes from industry leaders

Lamenting the good ol’ days

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    The sprouting of privately-held alternative trading venues has seriously mucked up the trading landscapes in the United States and elsewhere, or so says Thomas Caldwell, chairman and chief executive of Caldwell Financial.
    Caldwell, founder of a major exchange investment firm, sees a world that has quickly evolved into one of nimble, electronic players coupled with more and more trading venues with the proliferation of alternative trading systems, or ATSs.
    (They’re also called electronic communications networks (ECNs) in the United States and multilateral trading facilities (MTFs) in Europe).
    These new venues, which can include the ominously-named dark pools, or alternative venues, where they can secretly match buy and sell orders, leads to, among other things, “deeply flawed” pricing for market participants, in Caldwell’s view.
    The idea of bank-backed stock trading venues is also suspect, says Caldwell.
    “Publicly-owned exchanges, open and visible trading, an auction market environment,” he said during the Reuters Exchanges and Trading Summit in New York.
    “These are centerpieces if you really want an economy to grow and you want to encourage entrepreneurs with access to capital. The more we get into gamesmanship and side products and all this other stuff it depletes from this.”
    (Posted by Jennifer Kwan)

NYSE if Grasso were in charge? Bankrupt, says Liquidnet CEO

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The emergence of off exchange stock trading in the United States in the past 10 years has eaten away at the market share of the New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq by breaking their duopoly.

But those two U.S.-based exchanges have had strong management to help them weather the storm, Liquidnet CEO Seth Merrin said at the Reuters Global Exchanges and Trading Summit.

Any questions for the MTA?

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With New York subway riders and motorists bracing for the second round of fare and toll hikes this year, we imagine some of you may have questions for Lee Sander. The chief executive of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, the nation’s biggest public transit system, speaks at the Reuters Infrastructure Summit early Thursday. Post your questions for Sander below. Our MTA-commuting reporters will add a selection of them to their own long list and publish the answers on this blog.

Audio – And then there were two?

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Priceline.com CEO Jeff Boyd told the Reuters Travel and Leisure Summit in New York that he thinks that at least two out of the four players in the online travel sector – Priceline, Orbitz, Travelocity and Expedia – could be in a position for either an IPO or a sale once the economy turns up.

“I think that the most important fact there is that two of the major players are owned by private equity,” he said. ”Orbitz is controlled by Blackstone. And Travelocity and Sabre Group are controlled by TPG and Silver Lake Partners. And what that means is eventually they will be looking for a way to monetize those private equity investments, and there’s two ways of doing it.

Audio – The waiting is the hardest part

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holliday1.jpgFor Marc Holliday, chief executive of SL Green Realty Group and Gramercy Capital Corp, the Tom Petty lyrics ring especially true.

Holliday, speaking at the Reuters Global Real Estate Summit, said on Tuesday that his company is waiting with bated breath to hear about which company has won the award to expand the gaming options at New York City’s borough of Queens-located Aqueduct Race Track.

Feldstein: NYC housing market “priced in euros and pesos”

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feldstein.jpg  Asked if weakness in the New York real estate market – which has been fairly resilient so far – could signal a bottom for the battered U.S. housing market, the head of the influential National Bureau of Economic Research said : 

 ”No, no no! The New York real estate market is priced in euros and pesos,” Martin Feldstein said,  referring to overseas investors snapping up property in the Big Apple which for them works out as a relative bargain because of the weak dollar.

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