Amazon gets new foothold into stock market data

The Healthy Markets Association is developing a tool to examine stock trading with Amazon Web Services and trading-analytics company MayStreet.

Amazon.com, which last month missed out on helping build a database to track more than 50 billion U.S. stock orders a day, just got a consolation prize: a smaller version of the project for academics.

The Healthy Markets Association is developing a tool to examine stock trading with Amazon Web Services, the Seattle-based company’s cloud platform, and trading-analytics company MayStreet, according to a statement Monday from the investor advocacy group.

The initiative addresses what the coalition sees as insufficient public information on what goes on day-to-day in the $26 trillion U.S. stock market, where much of the trading is automated and takes place faster than humans can comprehend.

It also gives Amazon a new gateway into financial markets, after missing out on the Consolidated Audit Trail (CAT), which will bolster regulators’ ability to catch manipulators and diagnose the cause of market crashes. Thesys Technologies got that contract. The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s unsuccessful bid to build the CAT — a database only regulators will be able to use — involved using Amazon technology.

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Academics, investors and other members of the public will be able to use the Healthy Markets product, which won’t contain as much information as the CAT.

“What we’re trying to do is create a platform through a nonprofit that glues together public data and private data,” said Ty Gellasch, the executive director of Healthy Markets. “We think the real value of making the data public is that it’s going to significantly improve studies of the market.”

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