Buy-side Perspectives Issue 15 - Page 10

High touch and block trading in 2019 One major impact of the MiFID II regime was the way it opened up new electronic processes and alternatives to traditional bi-lateral high touch and block trading. With banks being pressured on profitability, it accelerated the juniorisation of the sell-side desks and the buy side need to scrutinise and adapt to the new service levels. EQUITIES Calling out a few changes, one positive development to support bi-lateral high touch trading with Systematic Internalisers (SIs) is the improved perception of the quality of indication of interest (IoIs). Aggregating all the buy-side trader feedback from the local Alpha Trader Forums (ATFs) in each region in Europe, we can also verify the pre-MiFID II speculations that the regional small/mid cap specialists are now increasingly facing. Competition from global multilateral trading facilities (MTFs), high touch trading and seeking optimal partnerships and processes to access scarce liquidity with minimal market impact will certainly remain a focal point on the buy-side’s agenda. Almost half of the buy side are ready to use the various Request for Quote (RFQ) services for equity trading. The RFQ services not only enable access for the buy side to CRB Systematic Internalisers (SIs) but also Electronic Liquidity Providers (ELPs). Anecdotally, a few buyside traders who attended the 18 th ATF London Equities meeting have also reported that ELP SIs are gaining trust among the buy side for deals above the Large in scale (LIS) thresholds. From a regulatory perspective we are, at the time Kristian Karppi (K&KGC), Chris Jackson (Liquidnet), Scott Bradley (LSEG) and Benjamin Stephens (Instinet) at the 7 th annual ATF Global Summit 2019 10 Spring 2019