The SEC has stepped into a critical fight, to regulate or at least relook at the price of data, between powerful buyers (Banks, FIs, Brokers and HFTs) and sellers (Financial Market Exchanges). The fundamental driver for this is similar to past regulatory actions and interventions – Data is now critical to the gainful functioning of individuals and organizations. While there are clear historical precedents to such actions in financial markets, I think what has fundamentally changed is the willingness of policymakers to recognize that: a. Data is a basic and sensitive commodity b. Unequal or prioritized access puts many at a disadvantage c. Hoarding of data happens because it has lots of value Hence, in the view of regulators, if they do not even CONSIDER the pricing aspects of data, especially high frequency or risk variants, they may be undermining the basis of their existence i.e. to protect investors or folks who find themselves at the wrong end of the power spectrum. In my opinion, it wont be long before such regulatory actions on pricing, happen across data dependent markets & sectors, globally. Watch out Online Ads!
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