11.14.2013
By Terry Flanagan

OptionsCity Launches Product and Geographic Expansion

OptionsCity Software’s recently-launched introduced Freeway Analytics provides a simulation platform that allows traders and developers to quickly build and back-test strategies, discover opportunities and simulate real world trading based on sub-millisecond futures market data.

The new non-execution offering is hosted by OptionsCity and was built using OptionsCity’s Freeway automated trading technology.

“With Freeway Analytics, we saw a need in the market for better testing tools, a product that allows you to build your trading strategies with historical market data, and with an exchange simulation engine,” said OptionsCity CEO Hazem Dawani. “Given all market instability and technology instabilities with exchanges, testing is becoming more important. Providing the market with a tool to simulate extreme trading conditions, simulate crashes, and see how to capitalize on these scenarios was the idea behind Freeway Analytics.”

Historical futures market data is being provided by Vertex Analytics, but any desired market data source can be easily integrated.

The visualization engine allows traders to see how strategies will perform in different market conditions for a better understanding of how a specific trade will behave over time. The exchange simulator ensures that models take into account real-world latency and dynamic market conditions.

“Trading firms spend an inordinate amount of time and money on managing market data,” said James Austin, CEO and founder of Vertex Analytics. “In fact, the inability to effectively store and maintain high frequency futures data is limiting their ability to be successful.”

OptionsCity is also focusing on international expansion. It opened its London office in September to reach not only Europe but also Asia.

“As we are growing in the U.S., we are capturing customers with global operations,” Dawani said. “To meet their demands, we chose London to be the center of our European operations. Asia is becoming a major player in options, with China about to list options on four of its exchanges. So to reach Asia, we had to establish a base in Europe.”

As part of its European expansion, OptionsCity has built connectivity to Eurex, the derivatives exchange. “Eurex is a major hub for derivatives trading, and a major component for growing our business in Europe,” Dawani said. “We spent the last six months on building connectivity and certifying as a vendor on Eurex.”

Eurex Exchange lists some of the world’s most actively traded futures and options including European benchmark contracts like DAX Futures, EURO STOXX 50 Index Futures and Bund Futures.

“We are delighted to welcome customers of OptionsCity to Eurex and to extend the connectivity choices for our own clients,” commented Michael Peters, global head of marketing & sales at Eurex Frankfurt AG. “It is important for us to have top trading platforms offer our benchmark European contracts, demanded by an increasing number of globally-focused market participants.”

OptionsCity Metro and OptionsCity Freeway are the company’s two core software offerings. Metro is a fully configurable electronic trading and market making platform that gives traders full control over trading, safety and risk management.

The next version of Metro will include a Risk Command Center, which enables global risk managers to monitor changes across different groups, combine positions, and analyze P&L. “It’s designed for a global RM that monitors multiple trading operations, and needs to combine positions to assess global firm risk and profitability,” Dawani said.

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