Staid London Institutions Threatened By Incursions Of Women, Italian Food

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The times, they are a-changin' on London's trading floors. There's this:

Industry sources say Harriet Hunnable, managing director of metals at the CME Group, is among potential candidates to be LME chief executive when Martin Abbott leaves the post at the end of this year….

For now, men in business suits conduct often raucous "open-outcry" trading around a circular "ring" at the LME's Leadenhall St. headquarters in London's City business district, observing traditions that date to the exchange's coffee house origins.

There was a woman ring trader but she left.

And then there's this:

Xavier Rolet is that rare executive who makes his own wine, so it is perhaps appropriate that the French-born head of the London Stock Exchange wants to add an offering for Europe's bread and pasta makers to the menu….

The recent launch of a durum-wheat futures contract, used to hedge the main ingredient in Italian pasta, is one of the LSE's more low-key efforts to reduce its reliance on the thin margins of the cutthroat equity trading market. If that sticks, Mr. Rolet is eyeing a challenge to Europe's benchmark grains contract, the milling-wheat futures offered on the Matif market run by NYSE Euronext that is used by the continent's bread makers….

Mr. Rolet, 53, says he is patient. It took three years to develop the Agrex durum-wheat future, and just over 100 of the contracts have changed hands since its launch in January, compared with more than 2.1 million Matif milling-wheat contracts traded during that time, according to data from the Futures Industry Association.

Is the 136-year-old London Metal Exchange ready for a woman CEO? [Reuters]
London Exchange Seeks to Add to Its Menu [WSJ]

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