London International Financial Futures and Options Exchange


Selected applicants will be invited to interview in February and finalists will attend an assessment day at our New Bond Street Office in London in March After the creation of the euro in the exchange won the lion's share of trading in euro-denominated short-term interest rate derivatives — the EURIBOR contract. It already had an electronic platform called Automated Pit Trading APT , which was used in after-hours trading when the trading pit was closed.

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LIFFE floor staff were easily identified by their distinctive and brightly coloured blazers yellow jackets for Runners and badges with three-letter IDs called 'Mnemonics'. The exchange floor was an extremely noisy place with Phone Brokers and Pit Traders shouting instructions to each other and Exchange Officials overseeing their conduct and confirming trades.

Exchange members Banks and Brokers would pay a premium to have a booth position close to the trading pits to enable slightly easier communication with their pit traders. However the most common form of communication was via hand signals, not too dissimilar to tic-tac that a bookmaker would use at a racecourse. Contract prices were signalled with the hand held away from the body with the palm of the hand facing away meaning to sell and the palm of the hand facing towards oneself meaning to buy.

Contract quantities were communicated with the hand touching the body with individual units displayed on the chin, tens of units on the forehead, hundreds and thousands of units on the forearm again with the hand facing away meaning to sell and towards oneself to buy.

A project to record the hand signal language of the trading pit is being compiled. LIFFE pit traders and locals Traders trading on their own account, betting their own funds in particular enjoyed a reputation of a lavish lifestyle — pubs and wine houses along Cannon Street were filled with LIFFE personnel at all times of the day and night. Visitors to the LIFFE floor were often surprised by the harsh emotional conditions and chaotic-looking floor, with paper snipplets covering the floor and abuse frequently being yelled, albeit jokingly, at them.

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