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

Steve Auerbach of the OCC is the latest contributor to the JLN MarketsWiki Education GofundMe campaign. Steve is a vice president for strategic planning and development with the OCC. He had a long career with Sungard, where he was the president of Sungard Futures Systems. Thank you to Steve and all who have given and all who have yet to give. We are thankful for all the support for our efforts to preserve industry history. He helped us do just that by donating to our GoFundMe campaign.

Recently I interviewed former CBOT employees John Van Der Bleek and Tom McCabe for The Path to Electronic Trading series. They were both at the CBOT and helped manage floor and screen trading. I also interviewed Nils Robert Persson, formerly of Cinnober and now of Vermiculus, who built trading and clearing systems that helped electronic trading flourish. He was also the chairman of OMLX and deputy CEO of OM, making him a true pioneer of electronic trading.

Additionally, I interviewed CBOE trader Sheldon Cohen, a long time options trader, and Tom Ascher, a former CBOE vice chairman and now executive chairman of Quantitative Brokers, for the Open Outcry Trades History Project. Tom Ascher’s interview also had some The Path to Electronic Trading in it as he was the CEO of Nasdaq-Liffe, which helped bring electronic trading to single stock futures.

I also interviewed David Prosperi about his long career in public relations and corporate communications. Look for these interviews to come out in the next few weeks.

Scott Knudsen, the former head of trading for IMC in Chicago who is now the CEO of Cove Markets, announced on LinkedIn that the latest version of their software is out, CoveTrader v.1.7.12. The software allows you to trade on multiple cryptocurrency exchanges and get the best price for your cryptocurrency pairs trading. The tool looks at price, fees and liquidity to help you get the best price for trade. He has an impressive team behind Cove Markets and it is an interesting concept for a multi exchange platform. I refuse to mention the fee reimbursement promotion.

The thought for today: on the day I was born, for a very short time, I was the youngest person in the world.

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


Women In Listed Derivatives (WILD) is partnering with Women’s MoneyLab to host a (virtual) lunchtime session of “The Power of Financial Courage”. It will take place December 8, 2020 from 12:00 PM – 1:15 PM CST. The description reads, in part: “Too often women are socially conditioned to believe that talking about money is impolite or even dangerous. This “money silence” often leads to a lack of confidence and/or courage relating to money issues. Studies show that financial courage for women is a far more important factor in improving financial wellness than actual financial knowledge. Join the Women’s Money Lab (“W$L’”) and WILD on an interactive discussion as we explore how to build your financial courage.” Zoom details will be provided upon registration. You can go here to register.~SR

First Read

James Murphy Talks Murphy & McGonigle and Law Firm of the Year Award

James Murphy is the co-founder and chairman of Murphy & McGonigle, a law firm that was recently named “Law Firm of the Year” by the 2021 edition of US News – “Best Lawyers.”
John Lothian interviewed Murphy over Zoom recently to ask about how the firm won the award, why it opened up offices in San Francisco and Chicago recently and what role innovation in the financial services industry plays in their approach to serving clients.

Watch the video »


Order Granting Conditional Exemptive Relief, Pursuant to Section 36 of the Securities
Exchange Act of 1934 (“Exchange Act”) with Respect to Futures Contracts on the
Securities and Exchange Commission.
ACTION: Exemptive order.
SUMMARY: The Minneapolis Grain Exchange, Inc. (or any successor thereto) (“MGEX”) has expressed an interest in listing and trading contracts for sale for future delivery on the SPIKESTM Index (“SPIKES”) (such futures contracts (and any options thereon) hereinafter referred to as the “Product”). After careful consideration, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC” or “Commission”) believes that the Product has the potential to offer competition with the only comparable incumbent volatility product in the market, and is therefore conditionally exempting the Product from the definition of “security future” for all purposes other than as follows: first, the anti-fraud and anti-manipulation provisions under the Exchange Act will continue to apply

*****HOLY SEC, Batman!!!!~JJL


CFTC Approves Transfer of Minneapolis Grain Exchange’s Contract Market Designation
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission announced today it has issued an order approving a request from Minneapolis Grain Exchange, Inc. (MGEX) to transfer its CFTC contract market designation due to its acquisition by Miami International Holdings, Inc. (MIH). Upon closing of the acquisition, MGEX’s designation will be transferred to a new legal entity, Minneapolis Grain Exchange, LLC (MGEX LLC), which will be a wholly-owned subsidiary of MIH.

*****From Minneapolis to Miami, that is a good trade.~JJL


Tuesday’s Top Three
Our top story Tuesday was NYSE sales head departs for role at HFT Jump Trading (third time in the top three). Second was Quantitative Brokers’ jobs page – they are looking to fill a number of positions. Third was the download of the CFTC Interim Staff Report: Trading in NYMEX WTI Crude Oil Futures Contract Leading up to, on, and around April 20, 2020.

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