Schroders’ former head traders return to senior roles

Dan Barnes
Rob McGrath (l) & Nick Robinson (r)
Rob McGrath (l) & Nick Robinson (r)

Rob McGrath, former global head of trading at Schroders, and Nick Robinson, former head of trading for Fixed Income and Active FX at Schroders, have both taken up senior trading roles at other firms, a year after leaving the UK-headquartered asset manager.

McGrath has been named global head of trading, across assets, at the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA), estimated to have around US$700-750 billion assets under management (AUM) making it one of the largest sovereign wealth funds globally. The ADIA has been steadily building its trading team, recruiting Dale Brooksbank, former European head of trading at State Street Global Advisors, in late 2016.

Robinson, who was responsible for all trading teams across UK, Asia, and North America and chaired the Global Oversight Committee at Schroders, has been named head of trading at Insight Investment, which has £552 billion AUM, part of the BNY Mellon Group. He has overall responsibility for Insight’s dealing and execution strategy across all asset classes. He has a dual reporting line to Adrian Grey, head of fixed income, and Andrew Giles, chief investment officer of Solutions and member of the Executive Management Committee at Insight Investment.

The return for both indicates the importance of senior trading talent for asset managers in the current environment. With trade execution becoming more transparent in Europe under MiFID II, which a recent UBS analyst report, ‘MiFID II’s domino effect’ estimated will also have considerable impact on US asset managers, the capacity to trade effectively across assets, drive down costs and operate transparently is becoming increasingly important for investor relations.

“Within a year or two of MIFID’s implementation, we expect competitive pressure will lead asset managers (AMs) to fund research internally in markets beyond Europe. We estimate this could eventually result in a 6% to 14% EPS headwind to the US AMs we cover,” wrote the UBS analysts. “Given the uncertain timing and magnitude, we expect it will keep multiples of US AM stocks constrained for the foreseeable future.”

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