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Information and the Intermediary: Are Market Intermediaries Informed Traders in Electronic Markets?

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  • Anand, Amber
  • Subrahmanyam, Avanidhar

Abstract

A significant but unresolved question in the current debate about the role of intermediaries in financial markets is whether intermediaries behave as passive traders or whether they actively seek and trade on information. We address this issue by explicitly comparing the informational advantages of intermediaries with those of other investors in the market. We find that intermediaries account for greater price discovery than other institutional and individual investors in spite of initiating fewer trades and volume. Furthermore, intermediary information does not arise from inappropriate handling of customer orders by intermediaries. We propose that our findings are consistent with noisy rational expectations models, where agents extract valuable information from past prices. Intermediaries bear little or no opportunity cost of monitoring market conditions, which gives them an advantage in making profitable price-contingent trades. Lower trading costs may also enable intermediaries to trade more effectively and frequently on their information.

Suggested Citation

  • Anand, Amber & Subrahmanyam, Avanidhar, 2008. "Information and the Intermediary: Are Market Intermediaries Informed Traders in Electronic Markets?," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 43(01), pages 1-28, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:jfinqa:v:43:y:2008:i:01:p:1-28_00
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    Cited by:

    1. Jacob Gyntelberg & Mico Loretan & Tientip Subhanij & Eric Chan, 2010. "Private information, stock markets, and exchange rates," BIS Papers chapters,in: Bank for International Settlements (ed.), The international financial crisis and policy challenges in Asia and the Pacific, volume 52, pages 186-210 Bank for International Settlements.
    2. Anand, Amber & Gatchev, Vladimir A. & Madureira, Leonardo & Pirinsky, Christo A. & Underwood, Shane, 2011. "Geographic proximity and price discovery: Evidence from NASDAQ," Journal of Financial Markets, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 193-226, May.
    3. Yan, Bingcheng & Zivot, Eric, 2010. "A structural analysis of price discovery measures," Journal of Financial Markets, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 1-19, February.
    4. Johannes A. Skjeltorp & Bernt Arne Ødegaard, 2010. "Why do firms pay for liquidity provision in limit order markets?," Working Paper 2010/12, Norges Bank.
    5. D'Hondt, Catherine & Majois, Christophe & Mazza, Paolo, 2015. "Commonality on Euronext: Do location and account type matter?," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 183-198.
    6. repec:eee:pacfin:v:48:y:2018:i:c:p:84-98 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Alessandro Girardi & Claudio Impenna, 2013. "Price discovery in the Italian sovereign bonds market: the role of order flow," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 906, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    8. repec:uts:finphd:34 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Michel van der Wel & Albert Menkveld & Asani Sarkar, 2009. "Are Market Makers Uninformed and Passive? Signing Trades in The Absence of Quotes," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 09-046/3, Tinbergen Institute.
    10. repec:eee:ecmode:v:66:y:2017:i:c:p:121-131 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Comerton-Forde, Carole & Putniņš, Tālis J., 2015. "Dark trading and price discovery," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 118(1), pages 70-92.
    12. Ben Omrane, Walid & Welch, Robert, 2016. "Tick test accuracy in foreign exchange ECN markets," Research in International Business and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 135-152.
    13. repec:kap:jrefec:v:57:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s11146-016-9582-z is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Vinay Patel, 2015. "Price Discovery in US and Australian Stock and Options Markets," PhD Thesis, Finance Discipline Group, UTS Business School, University of Technology, Sydney, number 27, january-d.
    15. Alexander Kurov, 2008. "Information And Noise In Financial Markets: Evidence From The E-Mini Index Futures," Journal of Financial Research, Southern Finance Association;Southwestern Finance Association, vol. 31(3), pages 247-270.
    16. Piccotti, Louis R. & Schreiber, Ben Z., 2015. "Information shares of two parallel currency options markets: Trading costs versus transparency/tradability," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 210-229.
    17. Baba, Naohiko & Inada, Masakazu, 2009. "Price discovery of subordinated credit spreads for Japanese mega-banks: Evidence from bond and credit default swap markets," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 616-632, October.

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