Security Traders Association

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Security Traders Association
Founded 1934
Headquarters New York
Products Trade Organization
Web site

The Security Traders Association (STA) is a worldwide professional trade organization representing 5,000+ individual members, all of whom are engaged in the buying, selling and trading of securities. STA has 27 national and international affiliate organizations and represents the interests of the trading community and institutional investors. It provides a forum for its member traders, representing institutions, broker-dealers, ECNs, and floor brokers on issues facing the securities markets.[1]


According to its charter, the Security Traders Association is committed to promoting the interests of its members "throughout the global financial markets, providing representation of these interests in the legislative, regulatory and technological processes, while fostering goodwill and high standards of integrity in accord with the Association’s founding principle: 'Dictum Meum Pactum' – 'My word is my bond.'"



STA sponsors two conferences each year, covering trading issues, legislation, regulation, technology and other topics. In addition, various affiliates hold their own regional meetings.[2]

STA Annual Conference and Business Meeting[edit]

Attracts upwards of 700 market professionals, top regulators, elected officials, market and exchange executives.

STA Washington Conference[edit]

Forum for senior lawmakers to update industry professionals on the latest developments. Regulators provide a round up of new/proposed regulations and their effects on professional market participants and retail investors.

Local/Regional Meetings[edit]

  • Chicago Mid-Winter Meeting
  • Mid-Atlantic Winter Conference
  • Florida 2008 Annual Conference
  • Philadelphia Mid-Winter Conference
  • Los Angeles Conference
  • New York 72nd Annual Conference and Dinner
  • Kansas City Spring Outing
  • San Francisco Conference
  • St. Louis Summer Outing
  • New York Golf Classic
  • CSTA Annual Conference
  • New York 18th Annual International Reception


  • 1934-1945 -- The Security Traders Association (STA) was formed as Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal promised to move the U.S. out of the Great Depression and into prosperity. The Securities Act had just become law and the Securities and Exchange Commission had been formed to regulate the issuance and sale of corporate securities to investors and bolster public confidence in the stock market.
  • 1934 -- STA established in Chicago when the Chicago Bond Traders Club invited security traders across the Midwest to join them at their annual outing in 1934.
  • Post-World War II -- The “Own Your Share of American Business” campaign by the New York Stock Exchange opened up Wall Street to hundreds of thousands of small investors, but also to a variety of securities schemes. The SEC responded with increased oversight of the industry, and the STA responded by helping the regulators formulate laws to insure investor protection in the new environment.
  • By the 1960s -- issues such as the separation of brokerage and dealer functions, SEC supervision of the over-the-counter market and the extension of government controls over margin requirements were in the spotlight. During this time, back office problems resulted in shorter hours. The STA helped members keep informed on these issues and to get involved in the debates that would determine their resolution. It also helped to develop STAQ (Security Traders Automated Quotation System), a forerunner of NASDAQ, which updated information on 1,500 of the more active OTC stocks throughout the market day at hourly intervals.
  • The 1970s -- With the advent of Nasdaq and the growing complexity of the market and increased investor access the all-volunteer STA adapted to changing times. In 1973, Morton Weiss, a securities trader in New York who had long been involved in STA activities, became the organization’s first full-time president.
  • 1985 -- STA membership grew to 7,500+ with 37 affiliate organizations, also adding three international affiliates in Canada, Paris and London.
  • 1990 -- STA Foundation established
  • 1997 -- John N. Tognino was elected president and served through 1999. STA became a key mover in Washington affairs. STA sought relief from SEC transaction fees that were collected at the rate of five-times the required amount and became a lead proponent of legislation to provide fairness on these fees.
  • 1999 -- Leopold Korins became STA’s president and carried this effort to a successful conclusion with the signing, by President George W. Bush, of the Investor and Capital Markets Fee Relief Act that provided a dynamic formula, which led to fees that today are about half of their previous level. This was an important period for STA in that it led a fight and won – gaining recognition and respect on the Hill. Also during this period, significant market structure change began to take shape.NASDAQ collusion charges, in part, resulted in the imposition of Manning limit order obligations. Soon thereafter, decimal trading was mandated. This change clearly marked a historic point for the market making community, as the implications were far reaching and economically devastating.
  • 2003 -- Regulation NMS – the SEC’s effort to “modernize” the national market — became the discussion point with the trade-through rule being the centerpiece for debate. Importantly, STA produced a groundbreaking “white paper’, “Fulfilling the Promise of the National Market System.” It was hailed as an important contribution of thought on a most difficult rule filing by The Hill and the SEC.
  • 2006 -- STA University established. This effort is a “mission” to add value to our members while they enhance their value to employers.[3]

The STA Foundation[edit]

In 1990, the Security Traders Association established the STA Foundation, a not-for-profit corporation, to serve as the educational arm of STA. The Foundation is responsible for educating members and others about the evolution of the securities industry, e.g., technology, internationalization, new products, and the changing regulatory landscape.

The Foundation (a 501.3 corporation under the Internal Revenue Code) annually sponsors two academic conferences in New York, which address pertinent issues in the securites arena. In addition, the STA Foundation supports Baruch College and Pace University in its studies of the marketplace.

STA University[edit]

The Foundation also supports ongoing educational programs for its members through STA University, established in 2006.[4]

Two approaches to trader education include "Need to Know" offerings and "STA Immediate Learning." "Need to Know"[5] learning helps members keep on top of larger trends, releases, and information impacting traders and the industry. Traders simply can access from STA's Web site current critical information on key industry developments from regulators, legislators, market centers, and media sources. In addition to urgent information on industry developments, STA provides links to global contacts that securities industry professionals may need. It's a matter of clicking into the various organizations/governmental agencies, allowing the clickee to roam through sites.

"STA Immediate Learning,"[6] offered in cooperation with Bloomberg LP, is designed to provide knowledge on-demand. Lectures, papers and videos can be viewed online as a convenience. These enable traders to quickly become knowledgeable about new developments in trading operations or learn new skills required in the changing technological environment (example: on-demand Webinar revolving around a NASDAQ Update on Market Structure, with Liron Mandelbaum, Bloomberg Tradebook, and Randall Hopkins, NASDAQ).

Political Action: STAPAC[edit]

Formed in 1997, STA’s Political Action Committee (STAPAC), is a major component of STA’s Washington strategy. Its purpose is to support candidates for federal office who share STA’s values and beliefs and are supportive of markets structured on the basis of economic forces and competition rather than government intervention.


STA is composed of 27 Affiliate organizations in the US and overseas, with a total of 5,200 professional trade industry members who buy, sell and trade securities.


  1. About Security Traders Association. Security Traders Assn..
  2. "STA calendar”. Security Traders Association.
  3. STA History. Security Traders Assn..
  4. "Welcome to The STA University!”. Security Traders Association.
  5. "Need To Know”. STA.
  6. "Immediate Learning”. STA.

External Links[edit]