Campus & Community

CFTC Commissioner Scott D. O’Malia Opens the 2012 High Frequency Data in Finance Conference at Stevens Institute of Technology: “The True Sign of Intelligence”

Scott D. O’Malia, Commissioner of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), served as the keynote speaker for the opening day of the 4th Annual Modeling High Frequency Data in Finance Conference at Stevens Institute of Technology.

The High Frequency Data Conference which kicked off on Thursday, July 19 and will run through Sunday, July 22, has gathered key thought leaders from academia, industry and government from across the globe in the areas of mathematical finance, financial engineering, quantitative finance, systemic risk and many more topic areas.  

Commissioner O’Malia spoke to an audience of close to 150 academia, industry professionals and students in Debaun Auditorium on the topic, “The True Sign of Intelligence.”  In his speech, the Commissioner shared that it was time to shift policy and to create a new model to institutionalize academic interaction with the CFTC.  

He shared, “It is time we created a new model for the CFTC to draw on the vast expertise of universities, like Stevens. I believe there are two ways in which the Commission can formalize this relationship – to support the creation of new analytical and automated surveillance tools, risk modeling and cross market analytical capabilities, just to name a few.”

The Commissioner went on to share options on how government and academia could work together to help leverage the expertise between industries. Among them he shared the development of contracting tools for research-specific questions; whereby government institutions would be able to reach out and draw on academic expertise to vet and review research questions.

Another proposed option would be to establish a government academic advisory panel. He proposed that the panel’s role would be to recommend research topics, select and review competitive research awards and help solve specific market structure questions to the Commission.  This option he elaborated would provide a more hands on approach to solving specific research questions presented by various divisions within the Commission.

The Commissioner went on to say, “If we collaborate with researchers by providing access to market data on a confidential basis, in the same manner as provided today to the in-house economists, this approach can be extraordinarily cost-effective and of great academic interest to universities.” 

Furthermore, the Commissioner stated, “I would like to work with Stevens and others to better define and institutionalize this academic cooperation.”

To read the full transcript of Commissioner O’Malia’s keynote talk from the 4th Annual Modeling High Frequency Data in Finance, from Thursday, July 19, 2012, at Stevens Institute of Technology please CLICK HERE.