08.03.2011
By Terry Flanagan

Wells Fargo Expands Program Trading Unit

Wells Fargo is expanding its electronic trading unit with the creation of a program trading desk. The bank has hired four new employees in its New York offices who will report directly to Head of Cash Trading Matt Brown.

The new program trading desk will specialize in institutional equity portfolio trading that leverages the firm’s electronic platform. It will also offer agency execution and will commit capital to provide liquidity to Wells Fargo Securities clients.

Haresh Rana will become head of the program trading desk. He was previously an executive director at JP Morgan’s Delta One desk. Michael Lee will become a director at the new program trading desk. Lee worked with Rana at JP Morgan’s Delta One desk and specialized in risk and index arbitrage.

Chris Johnson will join Wells Fargo Securities as director and head of program trading sales. He was previously employed at Weeden & Co. as a partner of the firm’s program trading group.

The last hire is Kevin Kennedy, who previously worked at Deutsche Bank’s global portfolio trading unit and Goldman Sachs. He will become a director in the new program trading sales group.

“Over the past 18 months, we have created a Listed Options business and a customer Corporate Access desk, launched a new alternative trading system called WELX, and continued to expand the capabilities of WATS, our algorithmic trading operation,” Chris Bartlett, head of equity sales and trading at Wells Fargo, said in a release. “The growth in our product capabilities allows us to provide greater options to serve our clients’ distribution needs.”

Wells Fargo declined to comment beyond the release.

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