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Graham Sorrell
Head of Equity, Currency & Derivatives Trading EMEA & APAC at State Street Global Advisors

Which will be the key areas of focus for your trading desk in 2023?

One of our continuing areas of focus will be liquidity. Competition for market-share is hotter than ever and I expect to see further innovations and offerings come to light in 2023. Shifts in market share and new innovations have provided some fantastic opportunities in the past, which we have explored to our benefit and made some significant reductions to our execution costs. Assessing how and where we’re trading is like painting the Forth bridge, it’s never complete. We will always have a focus on improving workflows and changes to the technology we use, 2023 will be no exception. It’s also shaping up to be another busy year of regulatory focus. Be that the next MIFID iteration, Edinburgh reforms or potential changes to default settlement cycles.


Which is the biggest market structure issue in your opinion?


Keeping abreast of any regulatory divergence and how it could affect us is important given our footprint and client base. As an industry we share our opinions via consultations, but irrespective of the region or jurisdiction I would always welcome greater focus on putting the outcomes of end investors front and centre of policy making. 

Which focus area would you like to see progressed by the end of 2023?


I’ll keep this short: this could be the year, as an industry, we finally make progress on a consolidated tape. Let’s hope it’s a real-time, pre-trade tape. 

What are your thoughts about attracting the next generation of talent into trading?


This is so important. The career options available to the next generation of talent, which may previously have gravitated towards finance by default, are wider now than they have ever been. The financial industry should be looking to recruit people from all backgrounds and all levels of education. To me the notion of hiring degree-level candidates is overlooking a vast subset of potential talent. I think this is something the industry could do better on. 


Top positive tips for your peers and colleagues in trading? Power of #buysidepositivity


At times I’m guilty of jumping from meeting to meeting, being tied to the trading pad or simply keeping up with emails without thinking of the bigger picture. There’s only so many hours in the day, but it’s important to make time to simply stop and plan or strategize. I’m the type of person that likes structure and formulating a plan is a starting point from which I embark on any type of project. Building sometime into your week where you can just take stock and think about the deliverables ahead of you and consider things like: ‘could we be doing something in a completely different way’, ‘are we truly adding value by doing x’, ‘what if we tried this instead’. It’s very easy to overlook how important this is. By doing this I find I’m not chasing my tail all the time and much more front-footed. 

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