« Ten Percent Happier with Dan Harris

#123: Brad Katsuyama, Wall Street Reformer

Brad Katsuyama's blood pressure levels were "out of control" and he decided to make a significant change in his life. The Canada native left his job at Royal Bank of Canada, began a regular meditation practice and started IEX, a stock exchange that took on predatory high-speed trading and was the subject of Michael Lewis' best-selling book, "Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt."
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
For maybe see ten percent happier Vodka Dan Close listeners will recall that toward the end of last year, I believe, or at the beginning of this year and one of those two we did and a first time I was kind of envy gold into doing this experiment inveigled by my producers Josh, a call in show where we set up a number that you can call and voice Don't ask me anything you want so I didn't know if that this was going to be a really stupid idea or something pretty cool, turned out to be the ladder doing it? The questions were great. So now we're gonna try every week to take a question or two at the top of every show. So here we go and in a minute I'll give you a number. If you want to call it but Del it serves, take question number one:
again. My name is Peter. I began listening to your podcast cast an listening to Europe and I'm already finding six days or so in meditating, in the way that Europe's teaching me feel but I wonder if a placebo effect or I'll have an equal work has spiral for awhile. I've tried meditation before haven't gotten it. This seems to be taking because I haven't done it every day, but I've been more faithful to this than I have been any, and I'm feeling the benefits. So I wonder, is this what I can continue to expect so I'm gonna issued a caveat that I always do it. I think it's important to do, which is that I'm not a meditation teacher, just a fellow
agitator whose written, if you put some subjects, I've not like a complete moron but close to it. So, having said that, I think that, first of all, what you're describing sounds great and congratulations and you know meditation does in my experience- have benefits and they are what you you'd, which is you are boosting your ability to focus and pay attention and your boosting your ability to be mindful, in other words, to be non judge mentally aware of what s happening in your head, so that it Yank you around and That's it that's what you're doing when does it sound me other worldly, unrealistic, you know metaphysical men, anything that that is ultimately on reliable there. Thing said it's not come
for me also to hear from people who get very excited at the beginning of a vegetation practice and and for one reason or another, fall off either because they somehow you know like intervenes and they just stop practicing. A couple days and then there you go and into tells them that their affairs editor and and and they just stop doing it for months or because you know brain chemistry and exactness events conspire to diminish, you're the perceived benefits. and you lose some confidence, so it in both of these. things can be true simultaneously and What I would say is just from my own experience as somebody's practice now for nine years, that it comes and goes and its
depending on a whole bunch of variables and so the quality of your practice and the quality of your practices. shows up in the rest of your life, can really fluctuate and- part of what your training yourself to do in practice is roll with these. All these ups and downs in a more subtle way and and and not to go. to hung up on how what you know what the quality of your last sit was or with the quality of your last week, were as an tie that, to you know that the overall utility and quality of your of your practice so overtime. I think you just get used to the fact that meditation is is not about you know any. Active meditation itself. It's not about feeling a certain way. It's about feeling, whatever you feel clearly
in your life? It's not about which you know achieving sort of some permanent state of improved focus in my four minutes? It's it's about up an improved base line, but it's gonna fluctuate based on conditions. That's my experience. Great question was due to a more I. Then this is gone from Brooklyn. My question, for you is: can the act of interrupting and noting unnatural thought practice potentially interrupted good thought from fully blocked the me for example, if an inventor has a cutting edge, thought and uses mindful noting the label is thinking, can that simple interruption get in the way of the thought coming to life than another great question, and I don't have a definitive answer. I'm just gonna give you based on my own personal experience, which is the safest ground from which to answer all these questions. I think- this is a concern. I hear a lot from, especially for creative people that
Your meditating and you get a great idea and use was deserted. Non judge mentally noted, as thinking and not so get so sucked up in in thought itself. Are you in some ways: you know were shooting yourself in the foot because you know maybe the idea, that is what make a million bucks or invent some. You know something my experience now there's our aid is. Definitely true that when you get into meditation for me at least that when you're meditating you're turning down the volume somewhat, depending on the day, somewhat on your habitual thought processes that you indifferent ideas can emerge, and so, not uncommon for me to be sitting there in meditation. Unlike some great idea comes up, and I get into spiral that I am sure will be familiar to anybody listening whose meditated of wet dude. Should I read this doubt and illicit blah blah blah, but then
what I ve learned. How to do over time is just trust that, if its truly good idea, it will still be there when I start method so long, The saying, in my experience, its It is not detrimental to the thinking process The ideation process to the create the creative process to have created thoughts during a meditation session and to try to simply be mine, full of them rather than to get sucked into them and keep going with it. But I also thank you know, look not breaking some sacred law if you yeah what you believe as a truly genius idea and you decide to open your eyes, get up and write it down. So what Gulf go for it? I have. I have found many times at em. It frees up. I've looked back at notes after meditation retreats, where I've thought that I was seen of solving the world's problems and and often my thoughts were in as good as I thought they were at the moment. So that's another delight that may be waiting for
HU as well in the future. Aren't you great questions we're gonna try to do this every week in could lift it regrets. Having said that, maybe But my car, our current thinking, is that we can try to take a question or two every week, cuz, it's really cool. So here's the number. If you want to call in six hundred and forty six, eight hundred and eighty three eight thousand three hundred and twenty Six- put it in the show. Not send up well put it Oliver social media so and will say it in future week, so you have plenty of opportunities here. Thank you for those questions and let's get to our guest. So I guess this week is incredible. He's smart! and has really made an impact in the world. I wish I was smart enough to describe some accuracy exactly how he's made impact, so I will do it in probably factual in factually factually inaccurate fix, but then, when he gets the talk, he'll say it correctly, but
Brad cats Yama he's here he has. He is the focus of a huge book called flash boys by Michael Louis was written all these amazing books by the business world. Michael Louis has, and one of the most recent books was called Flash boys and Brad. Where is the protagonist any after the book? about he was and on sixty minutes. Brad was, and he was add, and this is where we get into. You know dicey territory in terms of describing this factually, but he was in if he was a fatal services executive, basely involved in Wall Street stuff, which is not attack. The term and saw some saw some structural aspects to trading that he thought was unfair to the rest of us.
and he not only blew the whistle on it but decided to create an alternative. So that's about as much I can say, without actually losing the threadbare suffice to say when he tells a story, it's quite riveting. Ribbing enough for Michael was to read a whole mega best selling book about it Trust me he's also meditate around, which is useful, because his life continues to be extremely stressful, So here we go. Here's brag, calcium thanks for doing this meant from nice to see you yeah gives the first I've seen you without, like a big played, a fries between two and three So how did you how and when and why did you start meditating, so the two thousand and twelve at so two dozen, for I'm in
New York City and I'm working as a trade or the World Bank in Canada, inserting it is like headaches, and so I go to the doktor and it turns out my blood pressure is out of control and it was the first time I'm in my life that I've ever had high blood pressure, and so he gave me a list of things to do and stop drinking coffee and cannot solve, etc, etc. And I tried fur. Eight years did manage it in a variety of different ways. Working now doing this and do not and finally enough in two thousand twelve, I quit my job at. Are we see to start? I access is a company that I now work at, and I now Her had more risk in my life personally professionally your goal for make good money did nothing mice. Second son was just born in my blood pressure, plummeted. to normal levels after quitting in it, it was the first time to meet it in. I think I got a good stand. I can do all these things that try to manage my blood pressure but psychologically the effect of leaving
company in kind of starting fresh, had a profound impact on on my blood pressure, and it became the litmus test of Cannabich Psychological well being, and so then I started to read it. in a very different books and and came to this point where meditation NBC became for recurring theme of like you know how to try to centre yourself and refocus and kind of refocusing so like Canada hold. The whole concept of like mindfulness, became something that I cannot go into. Pretty much since two thousand and twelve on an often prime, more significant enough In the last few years now I have been trying to meditate daily doesn't always happened. To be honest, put I try to do it and it's a pretty big impact on the way I the way I interact with people the way I interact, worked away, interact with my family in its become this kind of like no place for me too, to reset- and it's been spin- really helpful.
What kind of meditation you doing? Where do you do it? How long? Yes, so I'm at the supply chain for the survivors, twelve that's good, shameful again this place so my one of my new models is one minute counts, bright cs on twelve, you didn't twelve times my minimum trade together, so that I feel good about that I'll. Do it on the trains coming home from work, so we moved Connecticut, and so I found that when I'm on train coming home. It's you need a kind of like crater, routine, so I run in the mornings before going to work which is in a weird way, another form of meditating, it's just trying to recent or yourself and in a different, and so on the way home. I can't I wanna leave work at work and be present for my family well or meditate on the way home and on the way to the airport, always on the way home from the airport always, and I
fly. Lawton so did try to pick these places workin insistently, do it and you I've I've lived in, a Connecticut for two years and I've never missed the train. Ride. I've never missed a ride to or from the airport, and I just really kind of try to focus on on those times. And it's it's been helpful. It's hard my mind, goes million miles an hour as sure a lot of people's minds Doone. I find that it's still aren't still challenging, but its had a pretty big impact in again, my I'm unable to in a where we regulate my blood pressure. By doing it because you're not amend you talk about the child, the voices are coming and all this other stuff she reminds going to miss it, but it's there those thoughts or less sticky after a while, because you learn through meditation not to take them too seriously, and that I believe It is part of the mechanism for lower your blood pressure and long. Your stress overall, my experience to any with
honey to, is that your body react two things differently than your mind does or mine, believes its reacting and that that was kind of the big con. For me. This idea that I don't feel stressed, but why, The body is telling me something dramatically different and I feel I feel like meditation was this wait where kind of like mind and body became a little bit more align because there's lotta people out there that I don't feel stress, we must not be stressed, and I don't necessarily think that's the case, because your body does The day mean that's, that's the litmus test for weather, This situation is now you know how you react in this, it's your body, yet I can fully and all sorts of things. I've I've I've. I've said I've told the story before actually my first book, go ahead and undiagnosed depression. I would feel awful just awful can get to bed. I felt like feverish
and months of this and I got tested for everything you know everything. gave fever, you name it and I have them test to see if I had a gas leak in my apartment and then I remember seeing my best friend at the time it's just one, Regina still really close friend of my eyes. Mariah said. I think I might have to admit at some point that I'm crazy, which is a flippant way of like something else was going on and ultimately to it doctors like a year depressed- and I you know- naming it. You know help me figure it out. nobody knows Even though the mines in denial, it's a really crazy thing. Absolutely it's! You know it's just one of these things were the more you lean into it. The more you realize that this is if there is a connection mine embody in and you can pull yourself into thinking, nothing's wrong and I think another interesting part is like when you focus on your breath and really kind of nothing else. You start to realize,
Bigger points about, like I clenched my jaw, Oreo this and it becomes so habitual that it be almost becomes commonplace that your jaws and this constant state of ten in its only when you like release it, you realize. So I think it's been helpful. Also to kind of like find these trigger point. Said I have so, even if I'm not meditating, I can he really like say: ok, look focus on my John, be like crap and really like for my shoulders, totally. Happily, this so funny. Does that mind body connection sound so highfalutin, a new age, you, but it's a witch. like somewhat embarrassing to talk about it, but it's under I bought a mean that it is reason, while our scientists are interested in this, because there is a massive, massive and powerful phenomenon, but but just nitty gritty level windows for those twelve minutes. What are you doing in your mind? What kind of meditation its I dont have a good chance? It's not transcendental, it's it's focusing solely on my breath.
if you like of Europe, can be a little breath in and out in its mindfulness in the way we are going to have thoughts and let them pass, and I try to focus on different areas that that feel tense. and I'm really is trying to quiet my brain down in I it's it's now being kind of an entrepreneur in working in a you know. In a company we were a stock exchange and every day, is different and in a word were challenging the establishment, so there's a lot of angry people in a lot of controversy in I really just for listen quietly, my brain now, because we have three young kids, seven brain seven rounds. Five and Emmy is to its very hard to shift from you know, pincio this company to be at home but as a dad and husband, and I find that meditation what he bridge, that gap doesn't always work unfortunate
but it would run a place but or to honour in a place called tempers unhappy or so not always work at this again a safe place for you, my man, that's right. I wanna get deeply into the tumult in your workplace because it is fascinating. But let me ask question what your practice shorter, I wanna Eminent issued, we have before us is question. This is like you're you're within an unlicensed. Certain right now, because I am not a meditation teacher, but I just want to you said a few things that just got me maybe curious sure, Do you, as I do of all with, could you set it up before they get to its? It's tough my mind, going a million and, and I'm trying quieted down, do fine, there's a certain kind of subtle antagonism toward the thinking and that your kind of beating yourself up a little bit when you get lost oars are truly letting go in a seamless. Now, it's it it's a struggle. It is
some days easier than others, but it is a constant struggle, although I never could have done this ever two or three years ago, for you, like. I just never could like. When I first tried it, it was almost a joke where I'd be like Jackie, my fallen. If I feel Five minutes is barely forty five seconds, like I gotta think so, but it does it it. It feels like a struggle. It's been good, like you know the a I like the tap the ten percent happier up. Joseph Holstein Skype got this soothing whereby minutes got of it's. Ok, it's ok, you noticed, go back start back at the beginning. This isn't like business or you make a mistake in their monetary consequences. Right, that's right! This is that is so Harvard people I mean you Taipei straw.
Efforts to get our heads around the fact that you can't win. Admittedly, no right exactly, and I think so it's it's been helpful to be even just the idea that it's ok just start from the beginning, just that simple thought gives you something else to focus on other than saying I second meditating get some. So that's that's been over too, I have to say, and I think, I'll be reassuring. I've been meditating for common on nine years and I literally do ten times the amount of daily meditating. You do. The literally ten. A hundred and twenty minutes of an eye, Bravo mightily to this day, right with what you are describing and but in in part and parcel of your described. was the solution. Was there was the? illustration of of this success they have achieved. You started when you started, you were checking
were found in your city is still forty five seconds in now. You may get through twelve minutes and it's not a big deal may be harder, it still hard, but that is a huge, yet Quantum Leap, how'd. You shows you that the mind slash brain is training and you are doing it front and I ll just give you one hour of this will be useful one technique. That was taught to me recently that I found that I found to be incredibly useful. The first I will. I will say that first, I'm somebody mentioned to me. I thought was stupid, so you may think it's stupid. but let me just say it actually go into great. I have a new, book coming out soon and I it this stories in the book and of in a big way action by the time this post, the book may already be called meditation for Fiji. Sceptics available, what fine bookstore everywhere ugh now done aid. The book is written with this guy Jeff WAR and is one of my favorite meditation Jews, amazing guy and we were, we did- is Cross country road trip in a big stupid orange bus with
ten percent. Have your details on the side and we went out, met people who were interested in meditation but not doing it and help them get over the hop, so they could start meditating and but a lot of time on the bus. We just sat on talking about our own meditative practices and he really identified I identified in you, which is damn he basis to refer to my meditation practice as Dan's gulags you're just like this is a baton death. you're doing in your own head, you're, killing yourself every time you get lost, so he said that he had this thing where he he would, notice the various neurotic programmes that run in his own mind like there, if you, if you look carefully, you will see that the voices that pop up running patterns there are literally five or six voices that come up and he name them. He would give them silly names and then, when he would see them, he would be like one of his one of his voice was the grandiose which was this voice. They would pop up and tell awesome how awesome and is, and
What's up, L wrote a grandiose you it's you again welcome to the party and then move back to the bridge, and that created an inner atmosphere that was more forgiving. Okay, so, like I said when you said this to me, I was like that's dumb and I don't want to do it but I ended up doing it and now I do. It is a huge part of my practice when life of one voice. I call Sammy, which is named after that I don't know if you've ever heard of the book, what makes Sammy run, which is a book about an obnoxious striving a Hollywood agent. I notice that, unlike super ambitious thinking about things that I want to do today or was somehow gotta games, something out my boss, or whatever next overcoming arrived, some grand plan for taking over the world has ever set happier and like oh at Sammy Right was a man yet welcome the party drop it it it. It's not. I'm not angry at him on that. Our on you can take it, so you make it. You might be
the language him and that's fine, but you're you're, trying to train yourself not to whip your back every time you get lost, so I just said a lot, but I don't want any that makes them you know. Is it either devices great, because the voices are consistent? The actually like they are like actually, when you do it frequently enough, there's there's like a few of them, and it's always the same relative kind of like theme. There must come out of certain parts of your brain, so they, Absolutely they desert there's a recognition that that is there. For me, it's anger impatience, striving planning and desire YO it's like that. There is an attack complicated the other thing the tumbling about it, is like a boring. I thought, I was like such an interesting person, but I'm really not it's the same raw. All the time which is actually
in a humbling way are anyway little talk about your your professional life, which is like unbelievably interesting, tells him a flash boys and- and- and I guess my first question- is The events in flash boys, which we should assume nobody knows about where you may caning. During that, during all of that yeah yeah, I was and it was in a way, Cetacean and running like saved me. Get me sane and in those in those moments not decide to flash boys was, was being written. You know spent a year and a half with with Michael Louis, As you know, in a funny way, you don't walk the same path. I added several years before and is trying to understand how the stock market works, and when you realise that the stock market isn't just a bunch of investors transferring capital your people who supply capital investors. You have people who need capital companies
and you have this massive multi billion dollar apparatus in the middle- that are intermediaries that are trying to make that as difficult as possible, really die, thought they were trying to make it as easy now are you. How do you extract as as much rent as you can from from each party? If, if, if you make it simple, so your super super popular with the guys who run the New York Stock Exchange. I would imagine comments like the air, no nobler or what words what's funny. As you know, the stock exchanges and happy I mean what is enabled our current market. Fifty percent of the volume places is high speed traders exchanges, make more money, selling high speed data and technology advantages to certain parties. They make more money doing now than they do from matching buyers and sellers. So in a way to markets colleague lost its mind and flash was way was a way of highlighting that and so going through them. assets of well alone are really got up. You get, let's get there. You just said something really important, but I think a lot of folks who don't
your story might might not understand. So, let's do it granular gory! So this aren't and when you are at our BC, rural Backer, Canada have you noticed something really important and controversial, and you tell me to walk through what that was so so as a trader at at robbing Canada, We have trading systems that show us by orders and sellers bids and offers in when in stock, so you know, I would training on behalf of mutual funds or pension funds. They'd. Send me an order and say we want to buy a hundred thousand years, Microsoft and idle. I pull up a quote in Microsoft you're, the buyers you're the sellers and lets say there's ten thousand shares offered to sell it out of sight, need five dollars. Two thousand and six I would type and myself I want to buy those ten thousand shares my by them
but in two thousand and seven I type in my computer, I wanna buy ten thousand years of Microsoft. I try to buy them, and my computer would say you only bought four thousand in the stock would treat higher, deny leave stock to buy a try to buy six thousand shares at seventy five o five, I get back two thousand the stock would take off for me, so I could never buy or sell What I saw my screens and at one point I could, I drove me nuts for a while and then in two thousand and nine I got lucky. I was running: U S, training for We see they asked me run global electronic sales and training, which is way of I went for managing a give roof like human traders, to a group of Peter programmers and engineers who are building algorithms that my training team was using. So just a completely different set of of people and when I went over to manage this group, when I realized was that they actually understood that the stock market is not. U turn. Can be seen as you bunch people run here on the floor of the exchange. No trading happens on that, for the markets are completely election,
I ordered a movie set it to television studio, absolutely all the trading. Happens in in data centers out in New Jersey, and so what were these with these? engineers and developers and in one of the co founders of of I Exodus Guy named Ronan Ryan Ronan worked for a group of traders called high frequency traders. They were building networks to connect the differ exchanges their buying technology. The exchanges were selling to them to give them the ability to pick up signal at one exchange and you re me to another exchange to buy shares ahead of me and seldom back to me at a higher price. Essentially, what happened was I tried to buy ten as an shares of Microsoft. Let's say there was twenty five hundred shares at bats direct edge now back in the New York Stock Exchange. New orthography ARCA I sent for orders from our BC out to the market to buy ten thousand shares twenty five hundred years each. My first order gets to bats
because it's located in we Hockin New Jersey right on the other side of the tunnel, so Arby's downtown Manhattan, the fiber optic connections, New Jersey go up the website highway out the Lincoln Tunnel, I get to bats first, then I get to direct directions to caucus. Then I get to as yet and card or at New Jersey, then I get to the neuroscience change in MILAN New Jersey. Amid these there have this happening and nanoseconds so the difference in arriving at bats to New York. stock exchange was too milliseconds to one thousandth of a second, its three hundred ml. Second, the blink your eyes. I thought that was actually fast. Ronan comes to her, yeah, I hired him there and he said, will hold on. I just the network that can get my high speed trading clients from bad to nurse exchange in four hundred and seventy six micro seconds, which is four times fast. Within my me at our BC outlook. How in the world can you do? That means that what we buy faster technical, from the exchanges there's. There is now in other erecting microwave towers in the roof you're going through a fiber optic cable. So basically, they were selling
Will the ability to pick up information? What I think is instantaneous. I think mine, ten thousand shares its, not instant the series of events and the east changes are selling the ability to actually insert high speed traders. Into the middle of my trade to buy shares ahead of me just so back to me at a higher price. That's to me- and I am a mob I'll know anything. Well. Let me rephrase it and then I'll tell you what it sounds like me so you're. Your and you're, not even Joe public you're, up you're up your guy at a pretty big back you're trying to buy shares, and there are people out there. I guess this is the use of the flash boys who are able to see you're about order, something they beat you to market and then they sell it back to you at a higher rate. So like whistling in between all the the purchase, and so it's not. They did so think of it a different way. I'm trying to buy for tickets to a concert
and their seat one. Two three four and row b I no sell me, deeds one into, but they won't. Let me buy cease three four, try to sell them back to me at higher prices. So they don't know. I'm a buyer until I buy from someone. So that's me boy, from someone on bats they know, I'm a buyer now the racing that is an exchange that is an exchange, so they they. They saw me by the first exchange and there the racy me to exchanges two three and four to buy stock ahead of me the cancel, though sellers to basically just get in the middle of my trade and in its legal oddly, yes, Michael Louis Ass, the same question: how can our world can this be legal? I think The challenges is that as the market evolved, These traders ended up train at speeds, no one imagined and the exchange is in a very weird way are in this position as as self regulatory
organizations that there is a very high bar to be an exchange that there's almost like an honour to be in a national stock exchange and and they corrupted themselves because they sold people the ability, to trade ahead of other people as long as you're willing to think things different way. The role The exchanges like a referee there too. Teams planed as a set of rules. My job is to enforce the rules, so a buyer and seller. On an exchange are like the two teams. You have there referees and our stock market the exchanges they more money selling things to one of the teams, the they actually do from referee again, so that was happening. and I felt eighty there, given the arrests, are selling their merchandise. They have. This are sowing nutritional, package's, there's or theirs Turbo charge cleats to the asteroids, but not the Dodgers. Absolutely who do you think they're neutral? Absolutely not they want People buying the turbo charge cleave to win more than they lose because if they
us more than they wondered, stop buying cleats, but but so is this legal? It is legal right. It is legal. Nobody's going to jail over this will have there been a bunch fines and in things like that, but it's more about the fact that you didn't disclose the fact that you were selling these things to be the other people. Are you hitting the fact that you did it as I think the overall practice is really what we had a problem with so so part of the idea buying, quitting my job at our BC in starting, I acts was the idea that what was happening with legal I could go down and we could go down and complain in Washington DC and take it into a bunch of Venus stuff or you can go out and try to build a different kind of stock exchange. But that's that's what I,
that's. What I asked was are our market response to say you know what not every stock exchange has to sell advantage is not every stock exchange has to favor high speed traders at the expense of investors, we're going to build an exchange that actually protects investors from certain aspects of high speed trading week. We have a speed bump. We slow orders down instead of speeding, peep by signing the faster you know, technology we slow people down in a created, literally a complete maelstrom in the markets. People went ballistic in the fact that we try to actually just do then fair, full disclosure, my brother, my little brother, my lowbrow facing but he's not here cause, is actually me Matt is investor your company and that's how we know each other or funnily enough. Yet if you about how we know Joe up, maybe slowly, I read the book. and then it was only eyes. Then I started watching videos online and, like day, looks a lot like mats. I reached
demand, is this, what is your brother? Because if so, I want to know what's funny, but the book is the book I give. I will I've been, imitation on after a lot of my friends and family, but allowed the books were have are gonna. Call me crazy, but different, maybe a little nine ten percent happy with first book that I felt comfortable recommending to people to kind of experience, work. What I feel like I'm experiencing because it plain it in a way that makes it ok to be cynical and having most people who have never experienced meditation are naturally cynical so you have to almost embraced the cynicism to get someone to appoint of of appreciating, membership. So I know so big guy. I saw you out through him, but he as I was the well, if you have an embarrassing stories about him
Fifthly, fire because our library I like made about me, he is, by the way, the secret he and my wife for the secret, my secret weapons. They basically are my primary editors on everything I do. That was Matt came up with many of the best ideas that went into tempers and happier if he ever asked me to repeat that I won't so anyway, so that out of the way you say, a created, a maelstrom in the market place. Why? What word was the react because you decided to do a stock exchange. The way you thought it was ethical to do as it working and our people mad at you, so it so its deadly working. In our first day we did five hundred sixty five. shares in a couple million dollars and trading. In our record. Now we ve we ve had a day. I was ten point: seven billion dollars of happy on I act so so it's it's gone. Well, we can
Can you to grow in the simplest way if, if the playing field is on level- and you come in and try to level it, anyone who benefit from the unlawful Plainfield is gonna, be unhappy about that, but gets its caught at that simple. There's a lot of people who Benefited from the system that existed perpetuated the system that existed made a tremendous billions of dollars off that system, and we came and say you not there's a lot of. fairness in this system. Does a lot of four Kazan, mutual funds and pension funds that are basically bleeding out money. They don't even know their entitled to two a system that has been set up to essentially disadvantage them in working to change that a lot of not a lot of people very select company, got very, very, very upset because they make a tremendous amount of money from the system, so your stock exchange furious NASDAQ, etc in how to that. fury manifest
showing you slept in the same I'll. Give you a good example so to be an exchange which we are now we started as a kind of like a lightly regulate exchange, but are we went through a process? Is a two year process to get an exchange licence from the Assisi. The SSC asked hand, you a licence to say you know you can be a national stock exchange and it led to a very public fight because the New York NASDAQ Etc didn't want us to be an exception. So they wrote nasty letters to the SSC about I acts. They call us all. Sorts of names like we ve, been called dinner on american, unfair and etc, etc. I'm Canadians wouldn't take damages to an American, but so they rode. Their things NASDAQ threatened to sue the acc. If they approved I acts, so they did go too pretty extreme measures. At the same time you had California stay teachers in Texas teachers, capital group to your price. You had a bunch of like real big investors supporting us silly. when that stands back says one second, these big investors,
representing millions and millions of people want, I acts to be approved and the existing please don't bunch of high speed traders, don't like that fight set up exactly what the fight is all about. This is about a concentration of power in a trumpet billions of dollars, going to a very small number of people in trying to stop that redistribute that wealth across all the other people that participate in stock market, and so they did a lot of things to prevent us from getting up We have not the end of the day the ACC made the decision to approve. But that was a very long and drawn out public fight now, the funny part about it is that, right after we got approve, the you're Socrates. As you know it, oh we're gonna take one of our three exchanges and become a speed bomb to work in it. Working to slow down one of our three markets, which it makes absolutely no sense, because the whole point of the speed, but is to say more, Turkey knew from all the advantages were protecting investors from the advice, because they can buy on the other exchanges. So it's almost like you're having a tobacco com.
in an intense setting up a subs sub company, that's it we're gonna, sell you no kind of anti tobacco patches like so to New York copied us. It hasn't been successful, but it is just that level of of irony in the level it's its this, it is a very odd competition because they proclaimed to do all these great things for the market, but in reality there protecting a business, that's about rents, seeking, if, if you, if what you're doing so much better, much more fair, wise and everybody trading through you cause New York Stock Exchange, NASA combats paid, two point: seven billion dollars a year to brokers to send them orders. So if a pension fund trade through broker and a broker, since that order than your socks she's the broken its paid for that and we don't pay those those kickbacks an essentially
Are people get mad when I say the word kickbacks, but if a broker has a client order, send it to exchange and get paid for it and doesn't give that payment back to the client? I don't know what else to call it, but that's what it is so there's a payment, so is Kinnikinnick. it builds in exchange nearest actually bills in exchange they sell these advances. The high speed trader, who in the world would want to trade their no. Nobody would want to try Would you ever want to do that? Why would you ever want to play against the team of the turbocharged cleats? Well, a broker who's tasked with executing a client order is being paid. Aid to send the client into that exchange, because when the client gets picked off broker, doesn't have anything to do with it. Take it they get the pain to get the commission from the client to get the payment from the exchange. The clients go to deal with the fact that they put just bought at a price. That's you know not the right price
They were here if, if representatives from NASDAQ In- and why is he were in the room, how would they refute? What you're saying or really saying? Viewed we pay people to provide liquidity. You know the quantity One of those words that you say and makes everything. Ok, they'll say we pay people to provide liquidity. What are you know? No liquidity means, and this guy that's why they say it's our things down. It's the the they'll, say the technology and data we sell is available to anyone. But it's tens of millions of dollars. So so you get so what that's technically a true statement are you and I gonna go out? There? Is a pension fund of Missouri going to go there and spend tens of millions of dollars on equipment from the is it so it's kind of, but anyone can buy it it it's a fair market. Has anyone can buy this high speed data and technology? We pay people rebates, they call them rebates to provide liquidity.
on our market. So it's in other there's industry, buzzwords that you know people using an icy before I Ex launches an exchange. Every single exchange, paid rebates right market date and technology. Is the huge revenue source for all these exchanges so we're just where different kind of exchange? So you know but yeah it's very hard to refute in English, to, I think, use the word fight and, and and I think people were here. The passion in your voice rent cause your engage in a fight and clear that he gave me a sitting here and having had private conversation, do before that you're. Really you really about this, and I just wonder how do you stop this from enough just bleeding into every aspect of your life, like just dominating your thoughts when maybe
ruby, focusing on your kids you're talking to your wife. Whatever had this sounds so all engrossing yeah, it's it's the meditation and running army to big outlets and an they force in a way introspection. and then you have to at the end of the day were in this huge fight and we're running a marathon and sometimes Sometimes my brain wants to spread, and sometimes I want ass, the next water station, but like in reality. I realise that this is it. This is a long battle, and by Having these moments of of introspection, you realize that in order to win, and we We intend on winning. You have to re prioritize You know your life in a way that can let you make it to the finish line.
did you ever say you do stop talking about this, or I can tell you think about it, ease up she'd. She does he's a very good. She can tell just by my my face what mode I'm in and I think she does a very good job of Ghana. Like keeping you know it. Normal meditation has helped the lot in being able to switch from you know kind of like work mode to homeward, as my kids get older there's a different level of being of engagement them when they were when they were babies, that requires me to understand that the info so I have on them in the mannerisms. They pick up in and the way that I I interact with them, as it has a profound impact on who they're gonna penis as people, and I think that so I take it. I take home life is almost as seriously as I take work because it takes
at amount of seriousness to like not let this impact your life, but again it's it's if I stopped I mean if I start meditating, I I might go crazy, because I need these moments till like centre myself. It's is dislike so critical. How's it going a mean D. You I've gotten updates from you over the years, but knew how right as we sit here right now, has this how's it going this and this question on it is going well, you know we just got approval by the acc too now list companies on exchange rate, approval of an exchange listing a com, when he is Microsoft, lists on NASDAQ Ibm Lis. On that the stock exchange and I know they trade, absolutely trade everywhere, and that just means that they open and close on those markets. But there is a huge honour in.
Yeah cachet like NASDAQ in New York or are talked about in a different way because they have listings. We just got approval to do that and so's. You know, there's a companies and that we're gonna move over, and I just again think that war bringing a different type of model to the market. This has been a fifty year. What do I for New York NASDAQ and now we're a new entrant? And I think it's just the super exciting things are going well. Market share, is growing companies doing well were profitable. And now we have this other business line that we can start to tat kind of really, you know really push, and so I think all of that is is great and in being able to in a way can control our own destiny at I acts distress. that I have. I think one of the good distresses I had working at a big company. Is that all the things that I was concerned about, I couldn't I can control and I think that's probably one of the most stress
A feeling that you can ever have is that I can affect this outcome, no matter what I do. This decisions get later no matter what happens is that I think part of why my blood pressure, drop, so much when I left is that this burden of, like Sir in this path, and knowing that I don't know if we should be doing this, but I can't I just can't do anything you know just it was lifted ever yet. I have a new burden, which is you have to make decisions be held accountable for them, so that burden to me is different kind of burden, but I think in the actually it's less stressful than just feel helpless been feeling helpless is, is it is a terrible feeling, and I feel like Although there are stresses of what we do, I don't feel helpless area. Get up, and I know that I can do things even if it's a Longer term outcome. I can do things today that can affect the course of of in all our companies. Trajectory
in sometimes when you work at a big company, it's very very hard to feel I feel like that, and so I think that its it's it's just trying to manage it in a different way and try to be introspective and have kind extra about? Where am I? What am I doing? Mindfulness is just an incredible like practice, because Sometimes you just have to kind of being the moment and recognize you know the situation that you're in and be appreciative of the fact that this is this the hand you ve been dealt, and I do think I do think there there's a lot of, thus in our job. It's never I've never been a controversial person. The funny thing about all of this is that I spend my entire her life trying to get along with people. There are very few people who say that this Brad, I don't like him before Flash boys, You know why make life more difficult on herself, but now I will see its controversial and is a lot of people are dying
like me, and how do you know that they actually say I don't like you or the times yeah, where? Where would you meet somebody who's gonna say that to ETA congressional hearing, where it has to fires, has sometimes it it's. It's in oh yeah, it'll be indecency or it'll, be at an industry of answer, it'll be in oh here or there are you hear from other people. Are these people they you this is this? Is it it in a way it? You know, if no one disliked what we are doing, I would question what we're doing you're you're, trying to disrupt yeah and- and I think, you know, although it's not, I don't. I don't know if I would have ever said at the time. Marijuana fifteen years. This is what I wanna be doing with my life. This is how maybe the hand I was dealt in and I and I played the cards to the best him ability in, and I think that it in a way
you know what I did. What I really like to have flash boys is that Michael, is, did not turn me into this character. That larger than life, that was this rebel it took on the system. Lucky pay me exactly as I am I'm, I was just a guy in a certain place, faced with a certain set of decisions that made decisions that I think a lot of people would have made in my in my situation. This is what you've been a great winter. what are their things that I should have asked you that I didn't areas that you wanted to explore them that you feel like I fail to guide us into now I mean I do think it's you know what's interesting is. Is that a lot of people think that you know me education or even mindfulness, is about you know you might you you'll lose your edge or you'll become soft and in a way it's it's an almost aids, the opposite cause
you can be direct but not aggressive, you could be you know you can be. It provides me with a level of clarity that. I think I wouldn't otherwise have. If I didn't do it, have your head momentary, maybe I'm losing my age a little bit or you have so much edge that decisions taken as us a little bit of edge off of it. No, I I I I think so kind of in my job. Now I feel like I can nice. When I'm not met, taking enough or I'm not getting, I'm not get that part of what I need, because my caught my thinking, it's cloudy in my decision making decision making starts elapse are reacting. More than I want to, and- and I got a u no kind of like refocus I feel like give anything now, although wrist Cummins, where I lack focus and clarity rather than I just meditated and I feel soft. It's it's almost funnily enough. It's almost it's almost the opposite
You can think very clearly in this you'll be more decisive. You you'll have more conviction. To me, decisiveness and conviction or car, the opposite of soft, but I do think that if anyone feels that you know, mindfulness imitation meditation is is kind of crew. What was interesting is that thing is just starting get into any again you're, but your book price, you know, hits this area. A lot of people are focused on on me rotation, would have come from a certain kind of walk of life and it was easier for them to embrace it, and I think, but in other industries that we come from or a little bit different and there's more Taipei that are attracted to it in its more driven, it's more like competitive, and I feel like it's just starting to a break in I'm too that Rome you not. I have an executive coach. I work with Kate but Naraskin near she worked at Nike shoes there is great I kind of like business resume, I start
working with her and whose, although mindfulness we hardly ever talked about about work- and I have working with my executive team under its the people I never would have thought would have responded to. This type of coaching are absolutely loving and end. The changes are extremely positive. You know it's it's it's it's! it's not a sign of weakness whatsoever. To think that this is the type of no skill set that you know, hard charging typees should think about developing its almost the opposite. Just now. I mean look your preaching to the to the one man choir over here. Absolutely, I agree and I've your great poster boy for the point I'm always trying to make about hey. This is not does not mean you're gonna lose your age. If you're more August unless yanked around by your emotion, you have more edge and maybe edge, without edginess. You know, Europe you can communicate more clearly, without carrying you know the fight you had with your wife over into this. I'm and being mean to people. You know they're there, it's it's! It's a cleaner com.
Saner way to operate in my view in today's day and age, like with your heightened sensitivity, it's like decisiveness is important, and in and in doing that, and in a consistent and and clear way, you know you know in the in ten or fifteen years ago, people could blow up and have volatile o person be smashing. Things like that I have been allowed in in finance. I dont know if that person per se can exist in today's world. All it takes is one social me He opposed post in that person prize out of a job was kind of like a millennials. Don't put up of that stuff. They really don't. Let him be genetics. Where are you millennium? Seventy eight January axiom of mean, like my generation them, the role I was that I had the were- losing their tempers a lot in this building here at heresies. Nobody is still here but like that, does not fly now, no, no, and if it,
Let it be it be video at any rate it we over quickly. So I think this is such a good practice to say you can you can have all of these things you can have that edge you can have that level of aggression, but try to focus in again. I'm not perfect. I was greater. So I'm I'm I'm always working on I overreact a lot, but I have an understanding of that in that I can be better because I have had the only to step back to China. Have that introspection to be critical without beating myself up? I just know that that's something I gotta work on, but name that voice. Yeah me over reacting voice and unlike went in and greet him or her warmly and and so that Europe, that's. Okay, because we end up doing is we see, you know why I was at a sort of cult adolescent stage in my minute,
where I was seeing the rising of the voices that that are problematic for me and in and so that's the first up to see but I was then freaking out about the fact that I've seen it It's really for you. It's like you know your you. You know your wiring, which is that you tend to overreact stimuli, but that's cool like you can't help that your father. You were made and but then that thing is, can you see it happening and they can you let it pass without freaking out about, and that is the net You move of this all game: absolute emanate fur and our housing nine years I was tryin to react. Yeah I was a trader, and now I'm trying to untrained myself by by in a way I met. It is a learned skill. And I think again it's it's in after you, I should before and twelve minutes this this conversation is convinced we'd up my minutes. Well, I want I want to be careful about that, because you I learn,
the reason why I wrote this most recent book, the just as little Baxter got. You know what ten percent happier is that I wrote that book, because first I didn't think I was going to read it, but I thought that what if I had any value to add, was because I've, no nothing original to say about meditation I any value to add is that I could talk about it using the word and listened humor and talk about from perspective and ambitious person, and I was under this is assumption that ok, will anyone who reads this once I make a logical case, they'll start to meditate, rent stupid assumption that actually is it turns out habit formation is really really really difficult and an EU even set it right. Back to the beginning of this conversation, you're, like I do twelve minutes most day that everyday there's a little guilt creeping at your voice, I wrote this the most recent book. It's called meditation, Ferfitchkin fidgety in and its a it that the point was to help figure out what are the
The goals in the way of doing this habit of establishing this habitat manifestly really good for you and you know you shoot You definitely should not bite off morning You can chew which rights set up a gilt spiral that would kill the whole thing better at twelve minutes is working for you. My inclination is to save you're gonna, go up, go up very slowly and gradually and again, forgive yourself. It wont. Let me just say this with a one ever had to do a lot of research into behavior change human behaviour and the biggest lesson. The shone through for me was that experimentation and the willingness to experiment and fail and start again just the way we do on the cushion by the way is the magic. The magic behaviour can show like four Maybe you say you gonna fourteen minutes night, and maybe it's really good bye baby. You get to twenty minutes and it falls off. So it's like it's. This tight, tight trading. All the time
failure aspect and then not wanting to return it that's a real phenomenon. Yes, that is so. I think it was fun. About where wearing got on. Twelve. Is that now, especially so having taken this train for over two years, when I get on the train. I've no signal like that. I can't do anything so it's came the perfect corridor to dislike, Italy just realized that I can shut down and I felt like that. gave me the consistency that I needed, and I think it's consistency is is, is is key king actually consistency is you need to get you need and again I've just learned all listen. You haven't written about it, I'm kind of steeped in it now, but you need to get the practised anchored in your life and a consistent action which you have done and then you can once you ve done that. Actually you are way down the track on this. Once you ve done that you can
Paramount, with met with the dosage right. Maybe you should, but I just don't want you to do it with a sense of like old man was grown up. This has been a pleasure Your great with people want to learn more about you. Obviously they can. They can check out a flat. boys is there anything you have a website or twitter handle anything else, people every guy ex trading that comes a website yeah. We were I excellent Instagram Twitter and all that stuff yards its were out there can of life was was awful. What, if you want to find us where they found there are some thanks? great viewed it. Ok that does it for another edition of the ten percent happier podcast. If you liked it, please take a minute to subscribe rate us all If you want to suggest topics, you think we should cover or guests that we should bring in hit me up on twitter at Danby. Harris importantly, I want to thank the people who produce this. Paragraph
Efron Josh Hand and the rest of the folks here at ABC, who helped make this thing possible? We have tons of other broadcasts. You can check them out at ABC News broadcasts, dot, com, I'll talk to you next Wednesday. there's not a person in America who hasn't been impact it in some way by the corona virus pandemic, but it every community there are pockets of people we're suiting up every day. This is my my day last day of the cylinder stretch of quotas from one of our time in these or America's essential workers, the people who are keeping moving. I turn into a homespun mom and now in a new plants from ABC News. You gonna hear from damage. I actually went back to my office on cybercrime because it's not fair. He inherited sorry that our community has itself faintly moraine. This is the essential inside the from the
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