THE London Stock Exchange (LSE) may start firing its own compliance staff to force down costs in line with rivals unless regulators create a level playing field, it said yesterday.
LSE chief executive Xavier Rolet said the London bourse and rival
Chi-X Europe were roughly level in terms of market share in equities trading of about 22 per cent in Europe as a whole.
However, Rolet said the LSE has 150 compliance staff and also pays the regulators such as the Financial Services Authority (FSA) €5m (£4.5m) a year in fees, while Chi-X has three to five compliance staff and pays €140,000.
“Our compliance staff exceeds the total headcount of BATS, Chi-X and Turquoise together. Something is going to have to give,” Rolet told the Reuters Exchanges and Trading Summit in London.
Rolet added: “We are at the moment telling the regulators we are going to start firing people,” Rolet told the delegates.
He continued: “You can say as long as you want the level playing field is equal, which we don’t agree with – they pay €140,000 and we pay €5m for the same activities. It’s clearly not a level playing field.”