Michael Lewis’ bestseller on HFT triggered a frenzy of interest in this arcane subject.
Of the many reviews and commentaries, the sanest I’ve seen so far is a long piece by Felix Salmon.
Lewis has succeeded in shocking millions of people with the news that the stock market has violated their code—that it isn’t fair. Wall Street insiders, and those of us who knew about HFT already, have been generally underwhelmed by this revelation, because we’ve known that the Wall Street code has always favored a small group of rich and well-connected institutions who can afford to pay enormous sums of money to maintain their edge in the market. The advent of HFT just created new entrants into that charmed circle, while causing many incumbents to lose their gilded meal tickets.