Schroders' ex-head of fixed income trading has re-emerged in big new role at Insight Investment
The former head of fixed income trading at Schroders, who left the asset manager in 2016 after as part of a broader management shake-up, has re-emerged in a newly-created role heading up trading at Insight Investment.
Nick Robinson is now head of trading at the £552bn asset manager, a role he started earlier this month. Robinson left Schroders in June last year after more than 23 years heading up its fixed income trading team, and has spent the past 18 months running his own trading consultancy, which advises asset managers and hedge funds on everything from MiFID II regulation and the selection of the right trading platform.
Robinson fills a newly-created role at Insight Investment overseeing trading across all of its asset classe, which include fixed income, FX, equities and liability-driven investment.
His exit at Schroders was part of a broader shakeout of its trading team. Rob McGrath, who oversaw more than 40 traders across equities, fixed income and foreign exchange at Schroders, left at the same time as Robinson. Their responsibilities were taken over by head of equity trading, Gregg Dalley and Robbie Boukhoufane, who is now head of fixed income and FX trading at Schroders.
McGrath is now heading up his own fintech advisory firm called ZigIQ.
It’s been a tough time for senior traders in asset management, as large firms have merged heads of trading roles to oversee multiple asset classes. Over the past two years, some long-standing names have left big buy-side firms. Tony Russell, the head of trading at Newton Investment Management, left in November after nearly 20 years at the firm and has yet to re-emerge elsewhere. Paul Walker-Duncalf, the former global head of equity trading at BlackRock who left in July 2015, has been working for outsourced trading firm, Linear Investments, since May last year.
In an interview with Robinson after his departure last year, he told us that the role of buy-side traders has evolved beyond simply executing trades for portfolio managers.
“The skills needed are changing,” he said. “Buy-side traders need to add value to portfolio managers now. There are so many distorting factors in markets now, QE and other central bank, that the same trade can require different responses to market conditions,” he says. “MiFID II has meant a more of a focus on demonstrating best execution, so buy-side traders need to advise on this.”
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