Restrictions placed on new HKATS tests

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 02 September, 1999, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 02 September, 1999, 12:00am

The futures exchange has announced restrictions for the next two rounds of simulated trading tests on the Hong Kong Automated Trading System (HKATS).

According to a circular given to the 130 futures traders yesterday, the tests on the next two Saturdays will be designed to simulate trade at three times the level of historical peak activity of the exchange - the same level as in the last test on August 21.

The tests will determine whether the exchange needs to postpone the migration of Hang Seng Index futures and options to electronic trading to next year.

A new restriction in the tests will cut the number of best orders shown on the HKATS.

The system will only show the 250 best orders, instead of the 400 shown for each month and series in the previous test.

A futures exchange spokesman said the restriction was designed to avoid the problems of the previous test.

The failure of that test was due to a malfunction in the order depth window, which showed 400 best orders for all months and series of futures and options contracts.

This caused some brokers to experience system delays or disconnections.

To solve the problem, the exchange has arranged data to be sorted by the exchange's central system rather than by the brokers' systems.

The exchange also reminded all futures brokers to follow the order placement requirements, and that any failure to comply would result in termination of their participation in the test.

Brokers would need at least one experienced HKATS user for the test, it said.

The futures exchange has missed an August 2 target for migration to electronic trading. It is yet to announce a start-up date after seven failed system tests on the troubled HKATS.