Recently several friends of mine have come to me after having been terminated by their brokerage firm or proprietary trading firm employers. I listened to their stories then gave them a pep talk about the bright opportunities in front of them in light of all the changes occurring the markets and industry. This week I took my own advice.
Yesterday, I resigned as a branch manager of The Price Futures Group, Inc., my employer since November of 1997. In December of 2011 I had stepped down as President of the Electronic Trading Division of the Price Group when we moved John J. Lothian & Company, Inc. to new offices in the CBOT Building. You could say my brokerage business was a casualty of the success of John J. Lothian & Company, Inc. and its media business. You could also say that MF Global’s bankruptcy was the final straw that killed it.
Before I talk about the future, let me say this about the past. I am eternally grateful for my time in the employ of The Price Group and particularly Tom Price. His kindness, honesty, integrity and honor are everything one could wish for in an employer and a friend. I shall always look upon my time at The Price Group fondly.
It was the entrepreneurial culture at The Price Group that helped spawn the John Lothian Newsletter. It was also Tom Price’s tolerance and patience that allowed me to be outspoken in a world where many people keep their opinions to themselves. I will never know how many times Tom had my back, but I always knew he had it. It is hard enough to find friends like that, let alone employers.
Yet, it was time for a change. The deal Tom and I negotiated back in 1997 when I joined The Price Group had become obsolete amid all the changes that occurred at firm as well as the industry. The plans I have in the brokerage space, as I still have significant ambitions there, require new structures, compensation schemes, reporting lines and corporate cultures. It had been clear to me for many months that I needed to do something new, it was just a question of how to do it.
This week I decided the best way to do it was to do it myself, and with all the resources of John J. Lothian & Company, Inc. I am not prepared today to detail those plans, except to say that I am taking my own advice from my column about the trading world being in recession. My plans will attempt to bring innovation, education and marketing to the futures brokerage world in a way that is collaborative with the industry.
Finally, let me say thank you to all my colleagues at The Price Group. You are an exceptional group of people and it has been my honor to work with you. I wish you nothing but success in the future. Thank you to each one of you.