Callling John Thain!
Note: We've posted a communication link to the NYSE for Minyans to express their thoughts regarding the proposed 8:30 AM opening for the NYSE. We share this letter with the hopes that more Minyans take the time to be heard.
I cannot express strongly enough my displeasure at the notion of your opening at 8:30 AM EST rather than the current 9:30 AM. As a portfolio manager with many years in the business, and an enormously diverse client base, I already feel that there are too few hours in the day to properly serve my clients. To serve them well, most of my waking hours are devoted to the research and analysis that drives my investment process. Very little of the time is actually spent in executing trades.
I can assure you that not one share of incremental trading activity will emanate from my portfolios as a result of your extending your business hours. I can also assure you, though, that my support staff, and that of countless other participants in your market, will find their lives materially diminished as a result of this ill-conceived notion.
With modern trading systems and methods, a reasonable argument could be made that you should actually SHORTEN the hours to everyone's benefit, rather than lengthening them. I feel strongly that reducing the trading hours would be met with a far warmer welcome than your current proposal, and would give the NYSE a chance to show its human side in a way that would bring great credit to the exchange.
In a time of ECN's and computer-based trading platforms, the NYSE stands proud as a "human-centric" model in a microchip environment. What better way to highlight that great contrast between the NYSE and its competitors than to institute an enlightened humanistic change that would be the delight of hundreds of thousands of financial professionals and their over-burdened staff. One can scarcely imagine the good will that such a policy would generate.
Please give this your most serious consideration. It's rare that any large institution has a chance to not only stop a poorly conceived foray into bad territory (remember "new" Coke?) but also can simultaneously launch a new initiative with such tremendous utility and appeal. This is unquestionably your chance to do just that.
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