The FAST ProtocolSM is a data compaction methodology that has been developed in response to ever-increasing electronic trading volumes and market data messaging rates. The release of Version 1.1 marks yet another significant milestone in the development of FIX Adapted for STreamingSM also known as the FAST ProtocolSM.
The FAST ProtocolSM was developed due to industry demand. Although the FIX ProtocolSM had achieved wide adoption within the market, the traditional FIX format was proving unsuitable for high volume situations requiring greater bandwidth. Alternatives developed to address this market data problem have been only partially successful due to performance limitations with respect to compression and latency. The FAST Protocol standard solves this problem and allows costs to be shared among market participants.
By leveraging implicit tagging, field encoding and binary representation of data, the FAST ProtocolSM optimises communication in the electronic exchange of financial data. FAST thrives on large quantities of data that share similarities in content and structure, presenting significant opportunities for the global capital markets.
With the support of industry sponsors, extensive testing was conducted on the FAST ProtocolSM. The proof of concept tests that were completed, demonstrated that the FAST ProtocolSM is capable of radically reducing message size and bandwidth utilisation by compressing FIX data feeds by up to 90% without negatively impacting latency.
The FAST ProtocolSM has many uses, in addition to presenting a solution within the market data arena; it may also be applied to other areas demanding high compression and low latency communication such as high frequency trading, Direct Market Access and exchange interfaces.
The FAST ProtocolSM has received significant support from leading industry innovators, presenting a compelling new solution for improved trading and connectivity.