Speaking at a London conference on Tuesday, Donal Byrne, chief executive of Corvil, a high-speed trading technology company, caused a ripple of audible incredulity throughout the room when he suggested that trading speeds could be reduced to picoseconds in the not too distant future.
Before you dismiss this as yet another unneeded example of what’s wrong with modern finance and how little actual value high-speed arbitrage brings to the market… consider for a moment: light travels by less than a millimeter in a picosecond! Hell, it does not even break a meter in a nanosecond…
Leaving aside petty issues of actual CPU speed and everything but the most basic signal transmission aspect, I think this grandiose prediction from some random finance schmuck, no doubt busy at work on the next global crisis, can only mean one thing:
Finance has finally toppled the laws of conventional physics and invented supraluminal speed travel!
Take that, Albert.