High-frequency traders adopt microwave technology

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In the high-frequency trading arena, where every millisecond counts, some tech-savvy investment firms are looking to decades-old microwave technologies to reach alpha.

Although wireless microwave technology has been around for more than half a century, traders are being wooed by the claim that it can deliver data a few milliseconds faster than fiber-optic cable. Now, the once-stagnant microwave communications sector is finding itself in an "arms race" among vendors of new competitive offerings, according to Mike Persico, CEO of financial exchange service provider Anova Technologies.

"If you want to transport a little bit of data very fast, physics tells you that you have to go through air. Fiber is just not a good idea. It will slow you down," says Stéphane Ty , co-founder of Quincy Data.

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