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Competing on Speed

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  • Emiliano Pagnotta
  • Thomas Philippon

Abstract

Two forces have reshaped global securities markets in the last decade: Exchanges operate at much faster speeds and the trading landscape has become more fragmented. In order to analyze the positive and normative implications of these evolutions, we study a framework that captures (i) exchanges' incentives to invest in faster trading technologies and (ii) investors' trading and participation decisions. Our model predicts that regulation that protect prices will lead to fragmentation and faster trading speed. Asset prices decrease when there is intermediation competition and are further depressed by price protection. Endogenizing speed can also change the slope of asset demand curves. On normative side, we find that for a given number of exchanges, faster trading is in general socially desirable. Similarly, for a given trading speed, competition among exchange increases participation and welfare. However, when speed is endogenous, competition between exchanges is not necessarily desirable. In particular, speed can be inefficiently high. Our model sheds light on important features of the experience of European and U.S. markets since the implementation of Reg. NMS, and provides some guidance for optimal regulations.

Suggested Citation

  • Emiliano Pagnotta & Thomas Philippon, 2011. "Competing on Speed," NBER Working Papers 17652, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:17652
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    1. Nicholas Economides, 1997. "The Economics of Networks," Brazilian Electronic Journal of Economics, Department of Economics, Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, vol. 1(0), December.
    2. Thierry Foucault & Christine A. Parlour, 2004. "Competition for Listings," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 35(2), pages 329-355, Summer.
    3. Glosten, Lawrence R, 1994. " Is the Electronic Open Limit Order Book Inevitable?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 49(4), pages 1127-1161, September.
    4. Shaked, Avner & Sutton, John, 1983. "Natural Oligopolies," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 51(5), pages 1469-1483, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Yacine Aït-Sahalia & Mehmet Saglam, 2013. "High Frequency Traders: Taking Advantage of Speed," NBER Working Papers 19531, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Michael Goldstein & James J. Angel, 2014. "When Finance Meets Physics: The Impact of the Speed of Light on Financial Markets and Their Regulation," The Financial Review, Eastern Finance Association, vol. 49(2), pages 271-281, May.
    3. Dugast, J., 2013. "Limited attention and news arrival in limit order markets," Working papers 449, Banque de France.
    4. David A. Cimon, 2016. "Broker Routing Decisions in Limit Order Markets," Staff Working Papers 16-50, Bank of Canada.
    5. Trejos, Alberto & Wright, Randall, 2016. "Search-based models of money and finance: An integrated approach," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 164(C), pages 10-31.
    6. Andrew G. Atkeson & Andrea L. Eisfeldt & Pierre‐Olivier Weill, 2015. "Entry and Exit in OTC Derivatives Markets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 83, pages 2231-2292, November.
    7. Hoffmann, Peter, 2014. "A dynamic limit order market with fast and slow traders," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 113(1), pages 156-169.
    8. Rocheteau, Guillaume & Rodriguez-Lopez, Antonio, 2014. "Liquidity provision, interest rates, and unemployment," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(C), pages 80-101.
    9. Fuchs, William & Skrzypacz, Andrzej, 2013. "Costs and Benefits of Dynamic Trading in a Lemons Market," Research Papers 2133, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
    10. repec:kap:annfin:v:13:y:2017:i:4:d:10.1007_s10436-017-0305-0 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality

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