He was a pioneer in the industry and held key positions at the Chicago Board of Trade, including chairman of the exchange and chairman of the Board of Trade Clearing Corporation. He became a member of the Chicago Board of Trade in 1958.
Rosenthal began his career as a runner at the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) in 1951 and started his own firm, Rosenthal & Co., in 1970, serving financial and agricultural customers. He was elected to two consecutive terms as chairman of the CBOT in 1981 and 1982 and was a founding member of the National Futures Association (NFA).
He held a number of other leadership positions, including chairman of the Board of Trade Clearing Corporation and director of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and the MidAmerica Commodity Exchange. He was credited with creating two new classes of memberships for the CBOT, enabling new ways for traders to access the exchange. He was also instrumental in pushing for member approval of the launch of Ginnie Mae futures in 1975, the world's first interest rate contract, created by Richard Sandor. The interest rate futures complex became the core product suite for the exchange and transformed it from an agricultural futures market into a world market for financial contracts.
In 1982, as chairman of the CBOT, Rosenthal proposed created four new divisions of the exchange in an effort to bring more traders to the markets and money to the exchange members. The new divisions would be agricultural and associated markets (AAM), the government instruments market (GIM), the index, debt and energy market (IDEM), and the commodity options market (COM). The latter three would be created.
Rosenthal & Co, a clearing firm, merged with Collins Commodities in 1988 to create Rosenthal Collins Group.
In 1989, Rosenthal ran for chairman of the CBOT again on a platform to turn the exchange into a for-profit company instead of a member-owned-country-club-like organization. He also suggested the exchange explore joint ventures with exchanges in other countries. Additionally, he suggested selling the CBOT's art deco building in a bid to raise membership seat prices. Rosenthal lost the election to three-term incumbent CBOT chairman Karsten Mahlman by a vote of 630 to 524. Later in 1990, Rosenthal would hire Mahlmann to run Rosenthal Collins Group's London office, after Mahlmann's firm Stotler & Co. had declared bankruptcy.
In 1993, Rosenthal was appointed chairman of an advisory committee to review executive compensation at the CBOT following member unrest after a dip in exchange volume.
1970 - Founded Rosenthal & Co.
Rosenthal sat for several videos about RCG and the opportunities he saw.
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