Rise of the machines: how technology changed the stock markets

As trades on the Irish stock exchange are done by algorithms and high-frequency trading remains widespread across Europe, regulators are finally taking action.

20th April, 2014
You could say it all happens within the blink of an eye, but that would be grossly wrong -- the algorithm could have done this 400 times within that blink.

As the wheels of modern finance spin ever faster, people are being left behind. No longer are traders seen as the sole masters of the financial universe: over the past decade, computer programs working at speeds pushing the bounds of physics have changed the stock market.

One millisecond is all it takes - in that instant, a trading algorithm will have seen its chance. The algorithm has been scouring exchanges for arbitrage, a fleeting opportunity...

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