Interesting Reads in February

Passing along unique (in my opinion) articles that are in finance, tech, or of general interest to me.

TECHNOLOGY

1. Goldman has swapped traders for engineers

https://www.technologyreview.com/s/603431/as-goldman-embraces-automation-even-the-masters-of-the-universe-are-threatened/

Highlights

  • 600 equity traders in 2000 -> 2 today in GSNY
  • 200 computer engineers for automated trading
  • avg comp for ST and research among BB — $500k
  • 4 FX traders = 1 computer engineer
  • M&A bankers average $700k

2. Now, they are coming for the GS Bankers

Highlights

  • 75 programmers, called “strats”
  • doubled since 2014
  • Working on LBOs, equity underwritings, M&A in fin svs and RE
  • AI firm, Kognetics, could automate 1/4 of banking routine

3. Will the payment (cloud) layer be abstracted away?

Highlights

  • 25 minute video by Alex Rampell
  • Banks and lenders have an opportunity to overcome the disintermediation they have faced recently.
  • The method of payment may not be as significant if banks can incentivize customers with similar benefits.

MEDIA

WSJ is tightening up its paywall

Highlights

  • Starts Monday — no longer able to copy and past headlines in Google and read a WSJ article without a subscription
  • WSJ witnessed a meaningful jump when it A/B tested it on parts of the site.
  • Video is still outside of the paywall due to the higher ad rates .
  • Subscribers can still share via social media for non-subs to read for free.

NYC HISTORY

How did Bank Street get its name?

Highlights

  • Located 2.7 miles north of Wall Street and situated in Greenwich Village.
  • In 1798, there was a yellow fever outbreak.
  • Named after Bank of New York.
  • It opened an office and several other followed after a 2nd outbreak in 1822.
  • Bank of United States acquired a lot for $500 and later sold it for $30k in 1843.

MOTIVATING STUFF

Josh Brown continues to write some of the most relevant and relating material in the finance blogsphere. There are so many commonalities with this summary of his past ten years.

What a difference a decade can make.

Thanks for reading,

Nitin