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Where is the Value in High Frequency Trading?

Author

Listed:
  • Álvaro Cartea

    () (University College London, UK)

  • José Penalva

    () (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Spain)

Abstract

We analyze the impact of high frequency (HF) trading in financial markets based on a model with three types of traders: liquidity traders (LTs), professional traders (PTs), and high frequency traders (HFTs). Our four main findings are: (i) The price impact of liquidity trades is higher in the presence of the HFTs and is increasing with the size of the trade. In particular, we show that HFTs reduce (increase) the prices that LTs receive when selling (buying) their equity holdings. (ii) Although PTs lose revenue in every trade intermediated by HFTs, they are compensated with a higher liquidity discount in the market price. (iii) HF trading increases the microstructure noise of prices. (iv) The volume of trades increases as the HFTs intermediate trades between the LTs and PTs. This additional volume is a consequence of trades which are carefully tailored for surplus extraction and are neither driven by fundamentals nor is it noise trading. In equilibrium, HF trading and PTs coexist as competition drives down the profits for new HFTs while the presence of HFTs does not drive out traditional PTs.

Suggested Citation

  • Álvaro Cartea & José Penalva, 2012. "Where is the Value in High Frequency Trading?," Quarterly Journal of Finance (QJF), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 2(03), pages 1-46.
  • Handle: RePEc:wsi:qjfxxx:v:02:y:2012:i:03:n:s2010139212500140
    DOI: 10.1142/S2010139212500140
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Foucault, Thierry & Cespa, Giovanni, 2008. "Insiders-outsiders, transparency and the value of the ticker," HEC Research Papers Series 892, HEC Paris.
    2. Menkveld, Albert J., 2013. "High frequency trading and the new market makers," Journal of Financial Markets, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 712-740.
    3. Terrence Hendershott & Charles M. Jones & Albert J. Menkveld, 2011. "Does Algorithmic Trading Improve Liquidity?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 66(1), pages 1-33, February.
    4. Alain P. Chaboud & Benjamin Chiquoine & Erik Hjalmarsson & Clara Vega, 2014. "Rise of the Machines: Algorithmic Trading in the Foreign Exchange Market," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 69(5), pages 2045-2084, October.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Sandrine Jacob Leal & Mauro Napoletano & Andrea Roventini & Giorgio Fagiolo, 2016. "Rock around the clock: An agent-based model of low- and high-frequency trading," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 26(1), pages 49-76, March.
    2. Sandrine Jacob Leal & Mauro Napoletano & Andrea Roventini & Giorgio Fagiolo, 2016. "Rock around the clock: An agent-based model of low- and high-frequency trading," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 26(1), pages 49-76, March.
    3. Hoffmann, Peter, 2013. "A dynamic limit order market with fast and slow traders," Working Paper Series 1526, European Central Bank.
    4. Oliver Linton & Soheil Mahmoodzadeh, 2018. "Implications of High-Frequency Trading for Security Markets," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 10(1), pages 237-259, August.
    5. Moriyasu, Hiroshi & Wee, Marvin & Yu, Jing, 2018. "The role of algorithmic trading in stock liquidity and commonality in electronic limit order markets," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 103-128.
    6. Gerig, Austin & Michayluk, David, 2017. "Automated liquidity provision," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 1-13.
    7. Roşu, Ioanid, 2019. "Fast and slow informed trading," Journal of Financial Markets, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 1-30.
    8. Hoffmann, Peter, 2012. "A dynamic limit order market with fast and slow traders," MPRA Paper 39855, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Jangkoo Kang & Kyung Yoon Kwon & Wooyeon Kim, 2020. "Flow toxicity of high‐frequency trading and its impact on price volatility: Evidence from the KOSPI 200 futures market," Journal of Futures Markets, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 40(2), pages 164-191, February.
    10. Jain, Pankaj K. & Jain, Pawan & McInish, Thomas H., 2016. "Does high-frequency trading increase systemic risk?," Journal of Financial Markets, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 1-24.
    11. Fabrice Rousseau & Herve Boco & Laurent Germain, 2020. "High Frequency Trading: Strategic Competition Between Slow and Fast Traders," Economics, Finance and Accounting Department Working Paper Series n296-20.pdf, Department of Economics, Finance and Accounting, National University of Ireland - Maynooth.
    12. Jonathan Brogaard & Terrence Hendershott & Ryan Riordan, 2014. "High-Frequency Trading and Price Discovery," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 27(8), pages 2267-2306.
    13. Cartea, Álvaro & Payne, Richard & Penalva, José & Tapia, Mikel, 2019. "Ultra-fast activity and intraday market quality," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 99(C), pages 157-181.
    14. Zhou, Hao & Kalev, Petko S., 2019. "Algorithmic and high frequency trading in Asia-Pacific, now and the future," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 186-207.
    15. Hoffmann, Peter, 2012. "A dynamic limit order market with fast and slow traders," MPRA Paper 44621, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Jan 2013.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    High frequency traders; high frequency trading; flash trading; liquidity traders; institutional investors; market microstructure; microstructure volatility; execution costs; market quality;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • G13 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Contingent Pricing; Futures Pricing
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading
    • G28 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Government Policy and Regulation

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