Thousands of IT professionals working in the City of London are preparing for three weekends of live testing on the London Stock Exchange's new core trading platform, Tradelect, ahead of its planned launch later this year.
The London Stock Exchange's 335 plugged-in member companies, including all the investment banks, will take part in the first live test of Tradelect on 28 April.
The second weekend test on 19 May will be optional, but all of the exchange's members will have to participate in the final live test on 2 June.
The launch of the Tradelect platform is the final part of a four-year IT transformation programme at the exchange. The aim is to increase capacity and enable new services to be rolled out more quickly at lower cost.
Tradelect will enable the exchange to complete transactions in just 10 milliseconds, rather than the 110 milliseconds achieved with the current Sets trading platform.
Wendy Morgan, head of real-time data information services at the London Stock Exchange, said, "Each test will be like a normal day at work for everyone. We will bring down the systems on the Friday night and start up Tradelect on the Saturday morning.
"Our members will ask their front desks to come in, as well as their back-office processing functions."
The companies that trade on the London Stock Exchange have had to make changes to their software to integrate with Tradelect, but hardware is unaffected.
Although Tradelect is mostly backwards-compatible with Sets, it includes software enhancements that offer extra functionality to members, but requires them to make changes to their applications.
The three live tests are to ensure that any application development work undertaken by member firms works with the new platform.
Morgan said, "We are making sure our members are compliant and will not get swamped with data when Tradelect goes live."
Last year, shares worth £5.8tn were traded on the London Stock Exchange, making it the third largest financial market in the world.
Tradelect was developed by the exchange's outsourcing supplier Accenture in India between late 2004 and March 2006. The platform runs on an IP network managed by US supplier Verizon and relies on high-speed middleware developed in-house using the .net framework.
More about Tradelect
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