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Speed, algorithmic trading, and market quality around macroeconomic news announcements

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  • Scholtus, Martin
  • van Dijk, Dick
  • Frijns, Bart

Abstract

This paper documents that speed is crucially important for high-frequency trading strategies based on U.S. macroeconomic news releases. Using order-level data on the highly liquid S&P 500 ETF traded on NASDAQ from January 6, 2009 to December 12, 2011, we find that a delay of 300ms or more significantly reduces returns of news-based trading strategies. This reduction is greater for high impact news and on days with high volatility. In addition, we assess the effect of algorithmic trading on market quality around macroeconomic news. In the minute following a macroeconomic news arrival, algorithmic activity increases trading volume and depth at the best quotes, but also increases volatility and leads to a drop in overall depth. Quoted half-spreads decrease (increase) when we measure algorithmic trading over the full (top of the) order book.

Suggested Citation

  • Scholtus, Martin & van Dijk, Dick & Frijns, Bart, 2014. "Speed, algorithmic trading, and market quality around macroeconomic news announcements," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 89-105.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jbfina:v:38:y:2014:i:c:p:89-105
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jbankfin.2013.09.016
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    2. Mila Getmansky & Ravi Jagannathan & Loriana Pelizzon & Ernst Schaumburg & Darya Yuferova, 2017. "Stock Price Crashes: Role of Slow-Moving Capital," NBER Working Papers 24098, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    6. Kurov, Alexander & Stan, Raluca, 2018. "Monetary policy uncertainty and the market reaction to macroeconomic news," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 86(C), pages 127-142.
    7. Xu, Yanyan & Huang, Dengshi & Ma, Feng & Qiao, Gaoxiu, 2019. "The heterogeneous impact of liquidity on volatility in Chinese stock index futures market," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 517(C), pages 73-85.
    8. Hautsch, Nikolaus & Noé, Michael & Zhang, S. Sarah, 2017. "The ambivalent role of high-frequency trading in turbulent market periods," CFS Working Paper Series 580, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
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    14. Haugom, Erik & Ray, Rina, 2017. "Heterogeneous traders, liquidity, and volatility in crude oil futures market," Journal of Commodity Markets, Elsevier, vol. 5(C), pages 36-49.
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    16. Frijns, Bart & Indriawan, Ivan & Tourani-Rad, Alireza, 2015. "Macroeconomic news announcements and price discovery: Evidence from Canadian–U.S. cross-listed firms," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 35-48.
    17. Fernandez-Perez, Adrian & Frijns, Bart & Tourani-Rad, Alireza, 2017. "When no news is good news – The decrease in investor fear after the FOMC announcement," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 187-199.
    18. López, Raquel, 2018. "The behaviour of energy-related volatility indices around scheduled news announcements: Implications for variance swap investments," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 356-364.
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    20. Kurov, Alexander & Sancetta, Alessio & Strasser, Georg & Wolfe, Marketa Halova, 2019. "Price Drift Before U.S. Macroeconomic News: Private Information about Public Announcements?," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 54(1), pages 449-479, February.
    21. Chang, Ya-Ting & Gau, Yin-Feng & Hsu, Chih-Chiang, 2017. "Liquidity Commonality in Foreign Exchange Markets During the Global Financial Crisis and the Sovereign Debt Crisis: Effects of Macroeconomic and Quantitative Easing Announcements," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 172-192.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Macroeconomic news; High-frequency trading; Latency costs; Market activity; Event-based trading;

    JEL classification:

    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • G10 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - General (includes Measurement and Data)
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading

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