Options Industry Conference Wrap Up

Can I share a few quick thoughts on the just completed Options Industry Conference that wrapped up in New Orleans?

Did you see Mike Babel’s two informative posts here and here? These conferences are invaluable to hear about what is happening in our industry. It allows us to talk to our exchange participants face to face.

Here ideas and suggestions on what we are doing right and what we can do better.

The most anticipated of the sessions is the “Exchange Leaders Panel” where the heads of the different options exchanges mix it up. Fireworks are expected. One interesting topic addressed was the number of options exchanges. Currently there are nine options exchanges.

How many do you really need? NYSE Arca, NYSE Amex Options exchanges, perhaps three others? Now, three more option exchanges that have announced intent on becoming another option exchange that will bring the total number of options exchanges to twelve. Yes, we have nine exchanges currently and three more have announced or announced and filed papers with the SEC. You can call it the: Let us keep the lawyers and programmers at full employment plan.

On another panel dealing with social media, chaired by Jim Binder of the OIC, it was interesting to hear how social media is changing the dynamic of communication. How it allows everyone to be able to comment in real time. Everyone has a voice, whether it is by Twitter or other means. The big take away…Tweets live forever. If you would not want your Mother and Grandmother to read it…delete it, don’t send it.

Peter Ricchiuti of Tulane University gave the keynote on Saturday morning. He is also the Founder and Director of Research of Burkenroad Reports. He was informative, funny and made you think. On New Orleans, he talked about how young people are flocking to the city. Hundreds of tech startups and social entrepreneurship ventures have happened in the last few years. The Wall Street Journal writes New Orleans as having the “Most Improved Business Climate” and Forbes called the New Orleans Metro area “America’s Brain Magnet.” On the economy, he said it was improving. Employment is getting better year over year. Corporate profits are higher. Corporate profits drive GDP. Most interesting factoid he shared was that over the past 65 years, the stock market has done considerably better when unemployment rates were high (over 6.6 %).

Ricchiuti reminded us about what America does so well.  We innovate, we create and we invent.

Well, I have kept you long enough.  Trade ‘em up!