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Taking Control of RICs

Market participants are demanding consistency in symbology (naming convention) to minimise investor confusion, promote stability and mitigate operational risks. Internally they need to reduce the costs that stem from duplication of support for multiple vendor symbologies. Currently each exchange has its own data format and symbology, which means that each data feed must be normalised, renamed and consolidated before the data can actually be used. Through the use of symbology users navigate the data available on a specific instrument. Market data vendors provide their own conventions which allow users to cut across individual exchange symbologies but nevertheless are not compatible. Nirvana for trading firms has been a common symbology to ease navigation between market centres and data vendors, providing a better experience for investors whilst reducing back-office complexities. The market has for some time been crying out for a solution which allows them to integrate data from a myriad of sources seamlessly with trading applications, allowing new content to be added quickly whilst eliminating the difficulty in managing symbology changes and feed updates. As this paper will show, the best contender for a common symbology at present is the RIC.

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