IBM Global Financial Markets Chief on Preventing Another 'Flash Crash'


Financial regulators are set to release their report on the "flash crash" that caused the Dow Jones Industrial Average ($INDU) to plummet a stomach-churning 1000 points in May, before recovering the same day. The episode spooked both regulators and traders, and some investors have been wary of returning to the market in the months since.

The report will finger a single trade by Waddell & Reed Financial as a main cause of the crash, though regulators are not going to name that institution in their report, according to Reuters. Apparently, a single trade by Waddell & Reed in so called e-mini futures contracts precipitated the plunge. During testimony before Congress, Commodities Futures Trading Comission Chairman Gary Gensler had mentioned the trade, without naming the company.

The incident highlighted the increasing role of high-speed, computerized trading in today's financial markets. Keith Saxton, Global Director of Financial Markets at tech giant IBM (IBM), stopped by DailyFinance to discuss the role of technology in financial markets and how regulators can prevent the market from going haywire again.

"What we've learned is that the regulators don't have the same tools as the people playing the market," Saxton says. "We have to tool up the regulators and supervisors to see what's actually going on in near real time."