How is trading handled in the pit during economic releases?

Discussion in 'Index Futures' started by Kovacs, Jan 1, 2009.

  1. Kovacs


    As you know, it's common to see spikes or drops of 5-10+ points on the screen instantaneously when a key economic number is released.

    What's happening in the pit in that moment? How can open outcry handle something like that?
  2. AK100


    It just gets offered or bid straight away.

    So if the market before the number is 890 and the figure is bullish somebody will go 900 bid and then it will all go crazy with (usually) fast market conditions so customers can't hold brokers to their orders.

    In a big pit it's also possible to have one side trading at 900 bid and the other at 890 offered but only for a few seconds.
  3. Open outcry was handling moves like that perfectly well long before electronic trading arrived.

  4. We can assume that off the floor retail was getting ripped a new one under those conditions. Now, it's the fastest black box that rips them a new one.
  5. Covert


    Not really- the locals in the pit are usually sitting flat these days, waiting for those spike moves. Then every resting order in the deck on the way up gets filled, and the locals can either offset it with the e-minis or get out in the pit. However, if you're thinking that your order will get filled at a better price in the pit, think again. Those orders are getting filled at exactly the price that is owed the customer, not one tick better. That's the (last) advantage that these guys have standing in the pit.