Matthew Baron, Jonathan Brogaard, Björn Hagströmer, and Andrei Kirilenko
We study performance and competition among high-frequency traders (HFTs). We construct measures of latency and find that differences in relative latency account for large differences in HFTs’ trading performance. HFTs that improve their latency rank due to colocation upgrades see improved trading performance. The stronger performance associated with speed comes through both the short-lived information channel and the risk management channel, and speed is useful for various strategies including market making and cross-market arbitrage. We find empirical support for many predictions regarding relative latency competition.