Celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, CQG is notable for its long run offering real-time and historical trading data, along with technical analysis tools, but its leaders are in no mood to fade into the sunset. Instead, they are pivoting to take on the next generation.
In a video interview with JLN at FIA Expo 2021, Ryan Moroney, CQG Inc. president, and Pat Kenny, senior vice president, talked about a suite of trade execution technologies recently unveiled by the company.
The new tech suite is designed to give buy-side institutions such as hedge funds, large insurance companies and commercial hedging operations the ability to execute large, complex orders more efficiently.
The new technology is “our take on some of the things that exist out there in the marketplace already, but using some of our experience around market structure,” Moroney said.
The offering builds on Blue Trading Systems software, which CQG acquired when it bought BTS last year, Moroney said. Blue Trading Systems provides custom algorithms which CQG puts in a low-latency infrastructure.
Kevin Darby, the co-founder and managing partner of BTS, joined CQG at the time of the 2020 acquisition.
Moroney said CQG built the execution technologies as a series of building blocks that it wrote algos onto, which allowed the company to do two things — expose the algos as an out-of-the-box order type and expose the building blocks themselves as a software development kit.
The algos out of the box are geared toward institutional, buy-side customers that are executing large orders, he said. The software development kit is directed more toward the proprietary trading companies that want to write their own strategies.
Kenny said bringing Darby, ”an expert on the subject of algos,” into the company helped CQG move into more products “that we didn’t have for 40 years.”
“It brings us up to where we should be, with having algos, having more products, and adding that speed puts us more on the radar … [of] institutional investors,” Kenny said.
Some of the clients that have looked at CQG’s new products are firms that started to build things for themselves, got halfway down the path, and found it was not so simple, Moroney said. Trading firms’ expertise is markets, not technology, “and we’re technology guys.”
“I think we are going back to the analytics,” Kenny said. “The guys that were on the floor, there was a certain way to be able to trade in the pit, with your friends and colleagues. Once you left that, you had to come up with strategies, and it’s going back to ‘Old School’ using charts, looking at them,” he said. “CQG is No.1 when it comes to [charts] … we always have been,” Kenny said, but many people thought that was all the company did. “We’re trying to change that perception as we go along and add more products.”