Few topics, if any, in the financial world are as polarizing as high frequency trading. The Flash Crash of 2010 thrust this ultra-secret world of algorithmic trading into the spotlight and it has been a hotly debated topic ever since.
Scott Patterson's newest book, Dark Pools, weaves a narrative that is both fast paced and very detailed. Patterson provides the reader with a comprehensive view of high frequency trading, and his vivid descriptions of high speed traders, armed with their algorithms and bots is immediately engaging. However, it is the author's ability to distill the very complex topic of high frequency trading into an understandable nugget of information that makes this effort stand out.
While Dark Pools clearly warrants a five-star rating, those readers interested in superb anecdotal information on high frequency trading should also consult The Speed Traders, by Edgar Perez The Speed Traders: An Insider's Look at the New High-Frequency Trading Phenomenon That is Transforming the Investing World
. His book does not devote as much ink to the development of electronic trading as Patterson's does, however, Perez's interviews with high frequency traders gives insights into the field that are not matched by any other book on the subject.
Dark Pools is the rare finance book that can, and should, be read not just by people engaged in the financial sector, but by anyone interested in the future of global financial markets. Whether you are a financial novice or the savviest of financial operators, Dark Pools will prove to be an enlightening read.