Nasdaq Calls Freeze ‘Unacceptable,’ Makes Changes to Avoid a Repeat  
Jacob Bunge – The Wall Street Journal
Nasdaq OMX Group Inc. NDAQ +0.74% accepted most of the blame for the unprecedented three-hour market outage last week, calling its performance “unacceptable” and saying the issues that caused the breakdown were “clearly within” the exchange’s control.

Nasdaq Blames a Surge of Data for Trading Halt
Michael J. De La Merced – The New York TimesThe Nasdaq OMX Group on Thursday attributed last week’s three-hour trading halt a surge of data that overwhelmed its server, in the stock market operator’s most detailed accounting yet of the market outage.

Futures Industry Needs to Make its Case
Dan Collins – Dan Collins Report
The John Lothian Newsletter commented on a post I wrote on the Futures Industry Association’s recently released study on volatility in Futures. It stated, “Dan Collins is an anti-academic skeptic — who knew?”  Here is my response:

Analysis: Girding for battle as electronic derivatives trading revived  
Karen Brettell – Reuters
The $300 trillion privately traded U.S. derivatives markets could be on the verge of the biggest change in their 30-year history if investors embrace new electronic trading platforms that would reduce the market dominance of large banks.

Is the VIX still the best gauge of fear?
Drew Sandholm – CNBC
Though all three major averages managed to finish in positive territory on Wednesday, reversing two-straight sessions of losses, the CBOE Volatility Index surprised some professional traders when it finished only slightly lower. The VIX, widely considered the best gauge of fear in the market, slid below 17.

Videocast: VIX calm before storm?

The Exchange Diversification Play 
Ivy Schmerken – Wall Street & Technology
Global exchange operators are diversifying into new technology-related businesses such as licensing their market technology, selling compliance and risk management services, and cloud-based infrastructure to generate more predictable revenue streams away from trading businesses.

Weak Earnings No Threat To Bull Market Thanks To Federal Reserve
John Whitefoot -ETF Daily News
With the S&P; 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average continuing to trend steadily higher, many investors are wondering if, after four and a half years, the bull market can continue. After all, the S&P; 500 is outpacing profits at the fastest rate in 14 years, starting in 1999—the heart of the “dot-com” era.

JPMorgan Bribe Probe Said to Expand in Asia as Spreadsheet Is Found
Dawn Kopecki – Bloomberg
A probe of JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s (JPM) hiring practices in China has uncovered red flags across Asia, including an internal spreadsheet that linked appointments to specific deals pursued by the bank, people with knowledge of the matter said.


BATS CEO Plans to Attract IPOs to New Exchange  
David Benoit – The Wall Street Journal
BATS Global Markets wants back in the IPO game.
No, not its own IPO, which imploded in nine seconds of trading last March and was eventually cancelled and wiped out. But CEO Joe Ratterman told Bloomberg Television today that after the exchange’s merger with rival Direct Edge closes, he expects the new exchange would explore getting into the listings business.

Bidding War Emerges for E*Trade’s Wholesaling Business
Traders Magazine
The bidding is heating up for E*Trade’s wholesaler unit.
According to Reuters, Citadel LLC, Virtu Financial, Two Sigma and RGM Advisors are all bidding for G1 Execution Services, the E*Trade unit that makes markets for retail brokerages.


Exchanges Move to Revamp Volatility Curbs on Lightly Traded ETFs 
Chris Dieterich – The Wall Street Journal
U.S. exchanges asked the Security and Exchange Commission to exclude a handful of lightly traded exchange-traded funds from new market-volatility curbs following a string of phantom halts in ETFs that scarcely trade.

Former Chicago Commodities Trader Accused of Ponzi Scheme
Andrew Harris – Bloomberg
Bradley Schiller, a one-time Chicago commodities trader, is accused of running a Ponzi scheme leading to the loss of $5 million.


Finding Options Opportunities With Low Volatility
Russ Allen – The Options Insider
In the last two weeks’ articles, I discussed finding option opportunities by looking for stocks with unusually expensive options. A natural question is whether there are opportunities in stocks with options that are unusually cheap. And there are.

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