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Readers reviews of A Million a Minute

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The focus of this book is on institutional trading, although towards the end it considered the democratization of information and the increasingly impact of retail traders. Generally the book considers that ‘real’ trading is done by institutions, brokerages and banks. Here are the million dollar trades, and they can only be handled by skilled traders who are satisfying the demands of the institutions. From this perspective it makes sense to support the back room dealing, the telephone trades, the off market settlements and the need for anonymity. In many ways this is an apology for the dinosaurs. This is the closed club model of trading that is under attack from retail traders.


There is no question that there will always be a place for block trading, but there is no reason for it to continue in the same way as it has in the past. These inside markets are not consistent with the democratization of information and the impact this has had on the way the rest of the market trades. More than ever there is a demand for a level, transparent, clear trading environment. Old systems, and old systems dressed up with technology, will not survive. Davis doesn’t seem to fully understand this, perhaps because she comes from the same background as the people she writes about.


The book is an interesting background read and provides some very good insights into the methods and ways of thinking of a number of significant sections of the institutional market. It is worth reading for this information because it helps to show what is wrong with the current trading system. Anyone who has waited for the market to open so they call sell a falling stock a $25.00 and seen institutional trades go through at $28.00 before the opening trade at $22.00 understands why the system has to change.


 This is a useful book, but in just a few years since publication some of its ideas are outdated and overtaken by the empowerment of the retail trader by the internet.



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