Direct market access (DMA) has typically been a sell-side service for supplying its buy-side clients with direct access to trading venues using infrastructure and credentials provided and managed by the sell side. This arrangement has further evolved to sell-sides sponsoring their buy-side clients’ own direct access to trading venues (sponsored DMA), whilst retaining risk controls and clearing responsibilities. Either way, DMA has now become a standard method to access the markets and supports a wide variety of electronic trading technologies and strategies.
In the past, clearing brokers differentiated by offering a diverse portfolio of trading technologies and market access infrastructure. But market and regulatory changes have driven up costs and reduced profit margins, forcing the sell-side to reduce their service offerings. Some clearers have even exited the business.
At the same time, buy-sides are striving to improve performance. They need to be nimble, able to access liquidity where it is growing, and create liquidity where opportunities await. They need access to clearing services that meet their business model requirements and an on-demand DMA infrastructure that allows them to capture trading opportunities under increasingly competitive conditions with diminishing windows of opportunity.
Object Trading’s Direct Market Access Platform (DMA Platform) connects to more than 60 global equity, derivative and FX exchanges for both market data and order execution, supporting both click trading and black or grey box algorithmic trading.
This platform helps sell-sides reduce costs and complexity, eliminate redundant infrastructure, and simplify their market access. It allows them to provide more flexible solutions to buy-side clients at a lower total cost.
It also meets the needs of buy-sides by giving them more direct control over their business model. They can integrate any trading screen, reach any of the 60+ markets, and work with any broker on the platform, all via a single normalised interface. The platform dramatically simplifies the way buy-sides access the markets and prime brokerage service providers.
Capabilities the DMA Platform Provides
The Direct Market Access Platform helps to optimise the buy-side/sell-side relationship and increases flexibility for both types of market participants.
- Provide direct market access without the maintenance complexity.
- Optimise your core service offerings to maximise competitive positioning and attract the most profitable clients.
- Onboard clients without deploying infrastructure.
- Access a community of buy-sides generating order flow globally on the platform.
- Support order flow from multiple sources to multiple execution venues.
- Direct market access without the maintenance complexity.
- Choose your broker relationships based on your business needs.
- Flexibility to use the trading technology you need instead of what your broker can supply.
- Avoid the lock-in and mark-up associated with using broker-provided market access infrastructure.
- Achieve multi-broker market access on the same infrastructure. Now you can choose your market access infrastructure and trading screens independent of your prime/clearing broker relationships. This means finding a broker ready to take your business that meets your account size, leverage, geographical and asset class needs.
Connecting is Simple
It’s easy to get your systems connected. You write once to our normalised API or FIX interface for both pricing and execution. That one interface will get you access to any of the trading destinations via any of our wide range of conformed FCMs and brokers. You can add or subtract destinations and brokers as needed.
This market access interface is identical across all connected exchanges. Write once and connect to all markets over the same interface. Generally, no changes are needed to add a new venue or a new broker.
The Direct Market Access Platform includes the Order Execution Gateway, embedded Pre-Trade Risk Controls, Market Data Feed Handler, and Normalised Interface. You can connect any trading screen and use any clearing broker on the platform.
Use Any Trading Screen
No matter which deployment model you choose, you can use any trading screen provider, including screens built in-house. It’s easy to get connected via our API or FIX interface. Many trading platforms are already integrated. Click here to see our technology partners.
Use Any of Our Conformed Brokers
There is a wide range of brokers already conformed to the DMA Platform’s Pre-Trade Risk Controls and ready to accept new clients. Buy-sides can work with one or more of these brokers on the same infrastructure. Learn more about our existing Conformed Brokers and how to add new brokers to the list.
Low Latency Order Execution Gateway
The Order Execution Gateway manages trade order flow generated by screen-based and algorithmic trading systems connected to the normalised API or FIX interface. It also applies embedded pre-trade risk controls to that order flow on the way to trading venues.
Globally Compliant Pre-Trade Risk Controls for Broker and Buy-side
Clearing brokers are provided with pre-trade risk controls that meet and exceed their regulatory obligations to manage risk. In addition, buy-side users gain additional risk controls to further manage risk within the limits set by the clearing provider and in accordance with the buy-side’s internal risk limits and portfolio goals.
Market Data Feed Handler
The Market Data Feed Handler normalises direct pricing feeds from all connected exchanges. It distributes low latency, direct, reliable, real-time market data to trading screens and black- or grey-box automated trading systems. The data is identically formatted across all exchanges, so you can write once and connect all of your trading systems to the same interface.
Built on the FrontRunner DMA Suite
Object Trading’s Direct Market Access Platform is built on its award-winning FrontRunner DMA product suite. The system dramatically reduces costs and complexity for sell-sides and allows buy-side participants more control over where and how they trade.
The Fully Managed DMA Service deployment option includes an “on-boarding sand pit” for customers to test the functionality of their systems for both market data and order execution. Once completed, customers move to pre-production testing to ensure full trade life cycle functionality. The test market access infrastructure is identical to the production market access environment to safely test trading strategies with real results and then move them into production without the re-work required for environments that aren’t like-for-like.
The DMA Platform is available in two different deployment options:
- Fully Managed DMA Service – you write to our API or FIX interface once, and we do all the rest
- Software Only
Each of these options includes the core DMA Platform functionality for market data feed handling and risk-controlled order execution. Learn more about our deployment options.
Write Once to Our API and We Do All the Rest
When you use our Fully Managed DMA Service, you write to our API or FIX interface once, and then we do all the rest including exchange co-location, cross connects, hardware, network and bandwidth management, monitoring, and updating the platform to conform to exchange upgrades.
Learn more about the Order Execution Gateway, Market Data Feed Handlers, and Pre-Trade Risk Controls
Choose a deployment model that best suits your business
Check out our locations and connected markets
Learn more about our screen vendor technology partners
Read about our conformed brokers
How decoupling market access from trading screens saves money
Why you should resist the temptation to buy everything from a single vendor
How buy-sides are dealing with sell-side retrenchment
Exchange Connectivity Technology: To Build or To Buy?
Managing Slippage, Liquidity Fragmentation and Volatility