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SEC proposes uniform trade-through rule with opt-out feature; Creditex launches electronic platform for trading credit indices; Standard Chartered Bank picks CameronFIX for global connectivity.

The Securities and Exchange Commission agreed to publish Regulation NMS for national-market-system stocks, which would establish a uniform trade-through rule for all market centers, including The Nasdaq Stock Market, which was previously not subject to the rule.

While affirming the principle of price priority, the proposal contains two exceptions to the current trade-through rule: First, a market center would be allowed to execute an order at a worse price than the better-priced bid or offer displayed in another market center if the person entering the order makes an informed decision to opt out of the trade-through protections.

Second, an automated market would be able to trade through a better- displayed bid or offer on a non-automated market up to a de minimis amount of one to five cents, depending on the stock's price. This exception addresses the difficulty of accessing market quotes of non-automated markets, which are not immediately accessible, the Commission states.

The proposed trade-through rule would not change a broker/dealer's existing duty to obtain best execution for customer orders.


Creditex has launched the only electronic platform for trading credit indices. The new platform was designed to support the trading of all credit-default swap (CDS) indices, including the two rivals, the iBoxx and TRAC-X suite of indices.

By automating the trade and post-trade processes, the system provides complete price and trade transparency as well as operational efficiencies. The trading platform, which runs on Creditex's RealTime technology, allows traders to place live, actionable orders.

Creditex clients can also receive intra-day and end-of-day electronic feeds of live index-prices as well as trade confirmations, thereby eliminating some of the risks associated with trade reconciliation. These capabilities are consistent with ISDA's 2003 Operations Benchmarking Survey, which establishes goals for reducing risks and errors associated with trading OTC derivatives.


Standard Chartered Bank selected the Financial Information Exchange (FIX) protocol engine, CameronFIX, from London-based Cameron Systems for the bank's global-FIX connectivity-strategy. In the news release, Peter Cooper, Standard Charter's senior manager " business technology strategy, cites "ease of deployment and excellent pre-and post-sales support" as notable reasons for choosing Cameron over other FIX vendors that were evaluated.

The bank, which operates in 56 countries, throughout Asia-Pacific, South Asia, the Middle East, Africa, the United Kingdom and the Americas, is already working with the vendor on deployments of CameronFIX into other countries for future projects.

The bank chose CameronFIX to provide FIX connectivity for its Integrated Wealth Platform (IWP) " a Singapore-based hub enabling international banking that includes multi-market FIX trading via global broker Morgan Stanley. Connectivity testing with Morgan Stanley is slated for first quarter 2004, initially for one country.

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