Thursday, March 16

Exchange Stocks Getting Spanked

After big runups since their IPO's, these stocks take a needed breather to shake out some of the weak holders and form sound bases. From a Yahoo.Reuters story:
CHICAGO, March 23 (Reuters) - The shares of two high-flying financial exchanges, International Securities Exchange Inc. (ISE.N: Quote, Profile, Research) and CBOT Holdings Inc. (BOT.N: Quote, Profile, Research), plunged on Thursday in profit-taking and worries about competition.

ISE, the largest U.S. equity options mart, led the way as it continued a steep decline from its March 15 high of $52.84.

But CBOT finished as the day's biggest loser on the New York Stock Exchange after analysts at Jefferies & Co. said some profit-taking should not come as a surprise for the parent of the No. 2 U.S. futures mart.

In the above article Frederic Ruffy comments that the NYX Group, which now includes the Pacific Exchange, could become a serious competitor for the ISE.

The ISE makes note of the NYX and it's potential for drawing away some of it's order flow:
"Consolidations and alliances among our current competitors may create larger liquidity pools than we offer. The resulting larger liquidity pools may attract orders away from us, leading to a decline in our trading volumes and liquidity, which would lead to decreased revenues," ISE said.

ISE also said that, with other exchanges now running hybrid open-outcry/electronic trading systems, "certain qualities of our market are becoming more common."

As competitors improve their market quality, "commoditization of electronic trading in the options industry may begin, which could lead to an increase in price competition," the company said.

Here is a quick look at the graphs for some of the exchange related stocks.

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