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Javelin's CEO James Cawley Departs SEF

An advocate for transparency in swaps trading, James Cawley, founder and CEO of Javelin SEF, is parting ways with the derivatives trading platform.

Javelin Capital Markets, an electronic derivatives trading platform, is parting company with its founder and CE0, James Cawley who has led the firm’s swap execution facility.

In a statement, Cawley indicated that the interest-rate swap trading platform and its founder and CEO have decided to part ways.

“I am immensely proud of the firm’s accomplishments, the industry partnerships we made and the customer relationships we built under my leadership. I am also very product of the team I put in place,” stated Cawley.

Cawley has agreed to continue to serve on Javelin’s board and to offer the company strategic advice in this rapidly evolving space.

“I want to thank Javelin’s investors, customers and employees for backing my vision for the success of the business,” he commented.

The management shift comes less than three months after swap trading in the vast majority of liquid contracts became mandatory in February on Javelin and other SEFs including Bloomberg, ICAP, Tradeweb, MarketAxess, TrueEX and TeraExchange, to name a few.

“To put it simply, this is a case of a startup deciding it’s time for the founder to step aside into a strategic role to allow a new leader to step in,” commented Kevin McPartland, head of market structure at Greenwich Associates. “I’m sure it was tough for him to step back, but I’m sure he first and foremost wanted to do whatever was needed to help Javelin get to the next step,” added McPartland.

Cawley has been a driving force in pushing for more transparency and anonymity in the way swaps were traditionally traded with dealers over the telephone. But so far, the market structure has not changed that much. Banks are mainly trading interest-rate swaps through the interdealer brokers, while the buy side is transacting through the incumbent platforms like Bloomberg and Tradeweb, reported the Financial Times.

Cawley’s departure comes less than three months after SEF trading became mandatory in February. Javelin was the first SEF to file its made available to trade (MAT) submission with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, describing which benchmark contracts it wanted to offer trading in. Javelin’s MAT submission was the first to be certified by the CFTC on Jan. 16. This triggered a 30-day countdown for the start of electronic trading on SEFs or exchanges to begin on Feb. 15.

[For more on CFTC Certifies Javelin’s MAT; Clock Ticks on Mandatory SEF Trading , see Ivy Schmerken's related story.]

A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, Cawley began his career in finance working at Salomon Brothers, Lehman Brother and later Bank of America. “I wish Javelin every success for the future,” stated Cawley.

Ivy is Editor-at-Large for Advanced Trading and Wall Street & Technology. Ivy is responsible for writing in-depth feature articles, daily blogs and news articles with a focus on automated trading in the capital markets. As an industry expert, Ivy has reported on a myriad ... View Full Bio

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