The research that Michael Lewis put into this book shows how serious he was about revealing the truth about this very volatile and vital topic. A fascinating and extensive insight to high frequency exchanging, which is better known as HFT.

However, there are people that argues with Lewis research and the facts behind Flash Boys. Peter Kovac has written a 100,000-word book named “Flash Boys: Not So Fast” that questions every argument of “Flash boys” and thus defends HFT’s role in today’s markets.

In Flash Boys we learn the extraordinary lengths HFT´s and investment banks will go to get that nanosecond edge, and how they often use it in ways that can be describes as predatory, and the victims range from investment houses to individual investors.

“Flash Boys” starts out describing how a start-up secretly ley an 827-mile, 300-million-dollar fiber-optic cable that cut straight through mountains and rivers from Chicago to New Jersey —with the sole goal of reducing the transmission time for data by just a few milliseconds. This advantage, will allows HFT´s to see other buyers’ orders before they are executed.

The HFT´s were willing to pay $2.8 billion for this millisecond.

At the most basic level, HFT`s use this time advantage to buy the stock before the first deal has been processed and sell it on to the original purchaser at a slightly higher price, a process known as “front-running”.

a small group of Wall Street guys who figure out that the U.S. stock market has been rigged for the benefit of insiders and that, post–fiscal crisis, the markets have become not freer but less so, and more controlled by the big Wall Street banks and HFT´s. Working at different firms, they come to this realization separately; but after they discover one another, the flash boys band together and set out to reform the financial markets. This they do by creating an exchange in which high-frequency trading - source of the most intractable problems - will have no advantage whatsoever.

Among this “Flash Boys”, the focus is mostly on an equity trader at Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) who stumbles over the fact that he is not able to make a profit any more in equity block trading. Step by step he discovers more and more details how (HFT can exploit tiny timing advantages to squeeze out riskless profits from big orders.

Readers with a vague interest in Wall Street will get a lot out of Lewis’s journey through the world of high frequency trading, featuring fibre optic cables in New Jersey, Russian software engineers and the off-exchange trading venues known as “dark pools”.
(Dark pools are networks of privately held trading forums, exchanges or markets that provide a platform for the anonymous trading of securities. Dark pools facilitate non-exchange-based trading practices between broker-dealer firms and investors interested in placing orders for the trade of specific securities outside of public scrutiny).
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