From an operations perspective, how did the Swiss Stock Exchange handle the increased trading activity
Werner Bürki (WB): We are prepared for such market conditions and we have the necessary tools to support and protect market participants and investors. Our rule book allows for Trading Interruptions on an individual securities level to give traders the opportunity to take a breather and assess the situation – and to do this without interfering with the entire market. In addition, our market surveillance team ensures that transactions only take place at market conform prices – or declare a Mistrade otherwise.
How important is technology in ensuring operational stability?
WB: Technology is absolutely critical to coping with volatile markets like these. Circumstances like we’ve seen during the month of March are the reason why our systems are calibrated towards peaks not towards averages. As a result, our system capacity has been coping very well with the large volumes and velocity of trading across this volatile period.
So your systems have not been pushed to their limits?
Capacity usage is in the low double digits of our system’s capacity and we have had no outages or system issues so far. So it is fair to say that we operate not only one of the most technologically advanced, but also one of the most stable stock exchanges in the World. But the Swiss Value Chain only starts with listing and trading on the Swiss Stock Exchange – our Post-trade systems also had to cope with these unprecedented volumes.
Dear Werner, dear Christian: many thanks for these insights! And we are looking forward to the next interview which looks more specifically at the Post-trade space: Adapt, Transform, Evolve – Providing Post Trade Services in Early 2020.