Technologists at the London Stock Exchange and Nasdaq would be secure in their jobs - at least in the short term - if a merger of the two exchanges goes ahead, consultants say. However, the long term could be a different matter.
"For the first 12 to 18 months, you'd see relatively few job cuts due to the sheer size and complexity of combining the two exchanges," says Julie Giera, Vice President IT Management Research at Forrester Research. "We'd anticipate redundancies of around 20 percent in that period, followed by 40 percent longer term."
Giera says the technology synergies between the two companies would be relatively few, making it difficult for either to cut jobs in the short term. "Although the basic trading applications are the same, the LSE and Nasdaq operate very differently," she observes.
A fair amount of customization would be necessary just to handle existing legislative considerations. If the merger goes ahead, Giera says most cuts among technologists will impact those working in support areas like payroll and finance.
David Easthope, a manager at the Boston-based IT consulting firm Celent, agrees with that view. He sees long-term redundancies in support and development roles, and believes the companies could benefit from fewer customer interfaces, and potentially from consolidated clearing technologies.