Michael Steliaros is doing some big hiring for Goldman Sachs' quant execution team

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Michael Steliaros

As Goldman Sachs goes for growth in electronic trading, Michael Steliaros is the man to know. Steliaros joined Goldman from Bank of America Merrill Lynch last November. Insiders say he's very busy building out a team.

Based in London, Steliaros' title at Goldman is global head of quantitative execution services. As such, his purview covers everything from algorithmic research, to portfolio trading, the central risk book, quantitative content generation and analytics. "He's got a huge mandate," says one Goldman insider. "He's building out our program trading agency business."

Steliaros spent seven and a half years at Bank of America Merrill Lynch before joining Goldman, and as we noted before, he has a preference for hiring from his previous employer. Bank of America Merrill Lynch traders and quants say Steliaros recently poached another three or four of their colleagues, after recruiting Eliad Hochshteadt in February. 

Goldman didn't comment on the new recruits, who are understood to include Stavros Isaiadis, the former global head of equities algo trading technology at BAML, who resigned in the past few weeks and is joining Goldman at the end of June as head of technology in Steliaros' group.

Alongside Isaiadis, Steliaros is understood to have hired additional quant researchers and a "very senior" sales trader. "He's building an exceptional team," says one Goldman insider.

Steliaros has sampled life on both the buy-side and the sell-side. Before BAML he worked for hedge funds Panta Capital, Winto Capital and FGS Capital. Steliaros has a PhD in finance from London's Cass Business School.

Goldman's building out of its quant execution team is in line with the priorities outlined by chief executive Lloyd Blankfein earlier this year and then-COO Harvey Schwartz in September 2017. Blankfein said Goldman plans to focus on best execution and analytics in the equities space and that 70% of the firm's equities trading hires last year were engineers. Schwartz said Goldman intends to add an extra $0.5bn of equities revenues in the next three years.

Goldman lost share in equities trading as rivals like Morgan Stanley and J.P. Morgan were quicker to dominate electronic trading. Steliaros isn't the only one at GS trying to make amends. In 2014, Goldman hired Raj Mahajan, the former CEO of a high-speed trading company, whom Bloomberg described as "obsessed with speed."

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