John Lothian

John Lothian

Executive Chairman and CEO


The John Lothian Daily Update is a podcast turning the daily JLN hits and takes comments, our original content and the stories and quips in the top box of First Read into a daily podcast.


Hits & Takes

JLN Staff


Go Fund Me Campaign for MarketsWiki Education Video Series and John Lothian News
We need your help. John Lothian News is running a GoFundMe campaign to support our MarketsWiki Education history-focused video series and our company at large.

Your contribution will allow JLN to continue its work to capture the history of our industry through our Open Outcry Traders History Project, The Path to Electronic Trading series and more, including MarketsWiki and other MarketsWiki Education content.

We need your support to capture this history and help our company remain at the forefront of keeping the industry informed, educated and we hope occasionally entertained.

To read the rest of the story about the campaign, click HERE.


STA virtual 2020 Market Structure Conference: Some Election Predictions in a Completely Unpredictable Year
Sarah Rudolph – John Lothian News

At the Security Traders Association (STA) 2020 virtual Market Structure Conference Wednesday, Joel Oswald and Chris Wilcox of the D.C. law firm William & Jensen offered their speculations and predictions for the presidential election and the markets in a panel titled “Election 2020: A Crucial Moment.”

Crucial indeed. Investors are bracing for what may happen to the markets depending on who becomes president and what happens in the House and the Senate.

According to Oswald, a recent NBC and WSJ poll has Joe Biden leading by 14 points. A few recent polls show a much closer race. After last Tuesday’s presidential debate, average polling data appears to be showing a 1.5% gain for Biden. However, “Polling doesn’t necessarily matter, as we learned in 2016,” Oswald said. “What matters is to get to the magic 270 number [the number of electoral votes necessary to win]. Tonight’s vice presidential debate may be more crucial in determining that.”

“Polls can predict the popular [vote] outcome but not the electoral college,” Wilcox said. “You have to look at the polling in the battleground states – those will really matter.” Wilcox added that the polls are only of likely voters, and it is very difficult for pollsters to predict who will actually vote.

To read the rest of this story, go here.


STA 2020: Post-COVID Options Volume Recovers, Volatility Lingers
Suzanne Cosgrove – John Lothian News

When Cboe Global Markets flipped the switch on its trading floor in mid-March and temporarily moved to all-electronic trading in response to the COVID-19 crisis, it also heralded a period of change for the options industry.

“It was a big, big move to take robust open outcry trading to all-electronic over a weekend,” said Ed Tilly, Cboe Global Markets’s CEO, chairman and president, in an interview at the STA’s 2020 Market Structure Virtual Conference on Wednesday.

One change that appeared to be well-received by customers during Cboe’s temporary closure of the trading floor was the implementation of a modified version of AIM (automated improvement mechanism) for Cboe S&P 500 options (SPX). AIM offers potential price improvement through an auction process — something that became more important when Cboe went to an all-electronic format.

To read the rest of this story, go here.


Hits & Takes
JLN Staff

Today we announced the launch of a GoFundMe campaign to support our history-focused MarketsWiki Education video series, the Open Outcry Traders History Project and The Path to Electronic Trading, and the overall operation of John Lothian News. These are trying times that call for extraordinary means. It is a time to try something new, especially when the old system is not working.

We are asking for help. We all know the headwinds created by the pandemic, and those that it accentuated. The lack of industry conferences hurt us. That is where we see our readers, sponsors and friends and build relationships which culminate in revenue to support our operation. Industry consolidation, some spurred by the ill effects of the pandemic, continues to eliminate sponsor relationships.

Something as simple as Ceres being closed in the CBOT Building hurts. I could not help but run into people I knew there, and those incidental meetings at Ceres, in the lobby, or even in the elevator were all valuable for developing business.

So we are trying a GoFundMe approach. We hope that some of you who we have touched through the years will contribute. Maybe we interviewed you and it led to an opportunity. Maybe you read something and it saved you money. Or you watched a video and it brought a smile to your face. Whatever the reason that caused goodwill to develop, we hope that you will consider making a contribution to our GoFundMe campaign.

We love what we do. We have a great team. We want to continue to do what we do and keep doing it together. We want to continue to deliver value to you, capture history, inform, educate and entertain you with our products.

I was told I mispronounced Symphony Founder David Gurle’s name in my podcast Daily Update. His name is pronounced Gur-Lay, not Gurl. I also continue to have a problem pronouncing Sen. Kelly Loeffler‘s name on the daily update from time to time. I never heard her name pronounced until she was appointed a U.S. Senator.

Have a great day and stay safe and treat people the same way you want to be treated: with respect, equality and justice.~JJL


First Read

Vatican used charity funds to bet on Hertz credit derivatives
Miles Johnson and Robert Smith – Financial Times
The Vatican invested some donations for the poor and needy in derivatives that bet on the creditworthiness of Hertz, the US car rental company that defaulted on its debts earlier this year, according to documents seen by the Financial Times. In 2018, Pope Francis said credit default swaps “encouraged the growth of a finance of chance and of gambling on the failure of others, which is unacceptable from the ethical point of view”. The instruments, he said, were “a ticking time bomb”.

*****Finally a trade that has a prayer.~JJL


When You Have Enough, It’s Time to Help Others; After decades of striving for money, our columnist says he is focusing on other things.
Paul B. Brown – NY Times
My small house on Cape Cod needs sprucing up, but from the kitchen table, I can see a home that is in much better shape. Its owners hope to sell it for $8 million. This palace — which really isn’t overstating things; it looks like a small hotel — is 10,000 square feet, or about five times the size of my home, has seven bedrooms, nine baths and was, according to the real estate listing, “built to capture 180-degree breathtaking ocean and harbor views and receive the natural light at the most appropriate time of day.” It is stunning.

*****You don’t have to wait until you have enough to help others. You can start by helping others and you will quickly find you are rich beyond your dreams.~JJL


Wednesday’s Top Three
Our top story Wednesday was, of course, Trading Technologies Seeks a Buyer, from Barron’s. Second was the disturbing QAnon High Priest Was Just Trolling Away as a Citigroup Tech Executive, from Bloomberg. Third was How ‘Animal Crossing’ Is Preparing Players to Trade Stocks, also from Bloomberg.

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