A High Frequency Trading proprietary algorithm crafted by highly compensated brains-on-sticks and nurtured in the bowels of an investment bank escaped into the wild. From its carefully co-located massively parallel high speed trading computer it emerged to wreak havoc on the financial markets. In this case, it was a happy ending. The algo turned on its master and sucked the very life blood out of the firm that deployed it.Once Knight Capital’s algo was identifed as the culprit, the public company’s stock was slashed by 1/3 - a $300 million market cap haircut decapitation. That was Wednesday before we knew how much the algo lost on the trades. On Thursday morning KCG’s stock was slashed in half again when the trading loss was being reported at $440 Million. The incident is yet another lights-flashing, klaxon-blaring warning signal that competing HFT algorithms operating with the speed, size and complexity that are commonplace today cannot be adequately regulated, tested, or managed. Their interactions with each other cannot even be fully understood or predicted.

Jerry Gaskill
That’s the word from King’s X frontman Doug Pinnick, who says drummer Jerry Gaskill is improving following a heart attack February 26.

Gaskill underwent an emergency operation following his heart attack.

Pinnick commented on Facebook about Gaskill’s current condition: “Saw Jerry and he smiled and gave the thumbs up.”

Pinnick said Gaskill “seemed to recognize everyone and seems on it. Really cool. He is having some difficulty with the breathing, but overall looks sharp. Feel much better about this. Very excited. Just want to share that with you guys. Julie [Jerry’s fiancée] is amazing.”

To help Gaskill pay for his medical bills, King’s X is offering a special MP3 download-only title, called Burning Down Boston: Live at The Channel 6.12.91.

Anyone looking to further make a personal gift to Jerry to help him with his medical bills can send a check made out to Jerry Gaskill. Mail it to: Jerry Gaskill, c/o World Entertainment Inc., P.O. Box 3095, Sea Bright, NJ 07760. One hundred percent of your gift goes to Gaskill to help him defray his medical expenses.

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