Meet The People Behind The Vacuum Tubes In The World's Largest HFT Shop

Tyler Durden's picture

A rare glimpse inside "probably the world's biggest" 'market-maker' GETCO as it provides estimates of over 20% of 'liquidity' to the daly trading volume on US stocks. Meet the people that stand ready to feed the machines (oh wait) that stand ready at all times (except when most needed) to bid or ask...


The New York GES Trading Floor

The newly built trading floor that houses the GES Team is a few months old and just a five-minute walk from the New York Stock Exchange. A team of 19 to 25 traders and service providers work on this floor – depending on projects that require travel. The trading floor has several open positions for growth and sports a video conferencing system called Always On so that employees can see their counterparts in the GetCo London and Chicago offices.


Global Head of client services...


M.D. and Head of Sales... pavlovian bell-ringer?

"It’s a 30,000-foot view of the sales side. These guys watch other systems and look at order types. That means that they have a lot of alerts in their sights," he says. "If a call goes down, it rings a bell; if a customer is out, it rings a bell. If something crazy happens to a destination we route to it rings a bell." Once the bell rings, does this mean Drew and his team spring into action? It depends, he says. "The team is so small and that means that everyone lends a hand. If these two guys are certifying a trade with someone, the phone rings and we can jump on it," he says.


Senior Accounting Analyst.. part Borg "I live in Excel"?


But its not just stocks - here is the Fixed Income Sales Director

"Part of my job is not only being able to integrate with the end user from a technology perspective but also to be able to understand our flow and make sure it is respectable and customizable for the end user,"


Offense! The Coder...


Defense! Corporate Relations...


GETCO on the NYSE Trading Floor

With more than 850 listed companies in its roster, GETCO is the second largest Designated Market Maker (DMM) on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. There are 21 locations or stations inside the GETCO booth, where 21 DMMs monitor the stock prices of the companies represented by GETCO.


The DMMs hard at work...


and behind the scenes...


Source: Advanced Trading

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SeverinSlade's picture

Destroying all confidence in the financial markets with the click of a mouse at a PC terminal.

GetZeeGold's picture



Smoked in 0.000002 seconds.


Thomas's picture

Nice touch--faces of pleasant humans to make it all seem so normal.

GetZeeGold's picture



Half of them actually do function.....believe it or not.


fightthepower's picture

Good to put a face with the name. 

Manthong's picture


So how effective and productive are these smiling units of the collective if you sever their link to the mother ship?

francis_sawyer's picture

For the record... I'm the guy BEHIND the guy behind the vacuum tubes...


franzpick's picture

Careful, nature abhors a vacuum tube.

Thomas's picture

Check their necks for pods.


True story: I dreamed I was a pod person. (I have a sleep disorder; dreams can be special.) I wake up and for an ever so brief moment I find myself thinking, "I don't have to go to work cause I am a pod person." Related: My wife, while sleeping, opens her eyes the other night and says, "I wasn't talking in my sleep until I opened my mouth" and then closed her eyes. Message: Stop fluoridation of the water!

TheFourthStooge-ing's picture


Good to put a face with the name.

They have bright futures as lamp post adornments.

Sir Edge's picture

Your Account Will Be Assimilated...

GetZeeGold's picture's Jon!


ptoemmes's picture

I didn't see anyone move - could be wax dummies.

earleflorida's picture

so... they must keep the pleasure models in the Utilitity vRooom--with all those smiley faces

YungHungAndLegal's picture

Fixed income sales director...i'd like to integrate her end...

ATM's picture

I'd much prefer the naughty Senior Accounting Anal-yst

Moonrajah's picture

I'd be careful about that anal yeast, if I were you, man.

Dr. No's picture

Its all engineered to take peoples money.  Which is fine.  Except the big loosers cry to their congressman to get bailed out we end up paying.


"That HFT Terminal is out there.  It can't be bargained with, it can't be reasoned with.  It doesn't feel pity or remorse or fear and it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are broke."

mtomato2's picture

Excellent quote grab...


I'll be back.

lunar's picture

High-Frequency Trade Drones

Carl Spackler's picture


I got a kick out of the pictures and Tyler's captions, especially "Offense" and "Defense"...GENIUS !

slaughterer's picture

OT: ZH: please cover the drop of several PIMCO closed end funds to their NAV. They got and will be getting "TVIXed" quite massively.  

resurger's picture

i got a call from a trading firm to buy "Carbon Credit" and its trading on some Commodity Trading Exchange!

reminds me of John Paulson GS ABX!


Cunnial's picture


CvlDobd's picture

Resistance is futile!

fuu's picture

I see fat people, they must be poor.

GetZeeGold's picture



If you po......they'll give you food stamps.

GetZeeGold's picture



I'm hooked up.....give me a call.


Common_Cents22's picture

obama to obamafonidiots:  call me in nov, maybe.

Neethgie's picture

They have killed their own market, by stealing from people volumes have become anemic, pretty sure people will want to trade none bs markets in future.

SGS's picture

Can we get this crash overwith already so I can go bang my wife?

JPM Hater001's picture

So your wife is free right now?

gotta go...

GetZeeGold's picture



Know when to walk away.....and know when to run.


unrulian's picture

who bangs their wife?...that's gross

JPM Hater001's picture

Someday we will see an article about the guy who wrote the program that then created the algo...

Oh wait...

Cunnial's picture

Didn't you mean: Someday we will see an article about the algo who wrote the program that created the guy?

LawsofPhysics's picture

And precisely what product of real value to society are these schmucks providing again?  Well, I can see that at least two of them will easily find work in the red light district when the system consumes itself.  Don't be hate the players sheeple, get off your ass and change the game.

icanhasbailout's picture

at least one of them will be working the brown paper bag district

GetZeeGold's picture



Not yet.....not sure what the problem is....

Common_Cents22's picture

LIQUIDITY of course!!!   Like a boxer who can punch 10x a second taking on a boxer who can punch 1x a second.   The faster boxer is just providing 10x liquidity, never letting you get a shot in while he pummels your face.     the flaw in this is that a box probably earned the right to punch 10x by training, but HFT is just plain structured stealing.

How hard would it be to put in latency/trading speed curbs?   Kind of like Nascar trying to keep all the car specs equal so they race on somewhat even terms.

Winston Churchill's picture

Asimov's three laws of robotics totally ignored.

kill switch's picture

Gotta love the asshole with the polo shirt!!!! What a heart warming train of photos...Doing GOD'S work....

Dr. No's picture

"It was shattered [the cpu]... didn't work. But it gave us ideas, It took us in new directions... things we would never have thought of. All this work is based on it."

tip e. canoe's picture

from the video summary:

Get all your Youngevity Products such as Beyond Tangy Tangerine, the Alex Pack and Pollen Burst. These supplements are a great way to get your essentials vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and other beneficial nutrients!

maybe i'm bit too critical, but the Alex Pack doesn't look like it's working too well on Alex.