Barings trading head switches to £120bn rival

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Adam Conn, dealing chief at Barings for more than six years, will join Edinburgh-based Baillie Gifford, which manages £123 billion in assets, as its head of trading in September, according to people familiar with the situation.

Conn will replace Chris Barker, who became Baillie’s head of trading following the retirement of Robert Blaikie in April 2015. Barker is also retiring later this year.

A Baillie Gifford spokesman confirmed the hire. Barings and Conn did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Conn joined Barings in 2010, having previously been global head of trading at the hedge fund Atticus Capital and, prior to that, had a stint at agency broker Instinet.

Separately, Dale Brooksbank, the head of trading for Europe, the Middle East and Africa at State Street Global Advisors, left his role at the US manager in early July, according to two people familiar with the situation. Brooksbank is taking a new role in the Middle East, they said.

A State Street spokeswoman declined to comment. Brooksbank did not respond to requests for comment.

A well-known figure on the European trading circuit – and a regular speaker at industry events – Brooksbank had managed the day-to-day activities of more than 10 traders across equities, fixed income, currencies, futures and options, according to his LinkedIn profile. Brooksbank joined State Street in 2006 from Legal & General Investment Management, where he traded UK and European equities and also derivatives.

Conn and Brooksbank are among several senior dealers to have left their roles over the past 18 months. FN reported on July 12 that Rob McGrath and Nick Robinson, the head of of trading and head of fixed income trading, respectively, at UK fund manager Schroders, had left. McGrath had been with Schroders for around 14 years, and Robinson for more than 23 years.

In April, Fidelity International merged its global equity and fixed income trading teams and created a new global head of trading role. The change in structure prompted the departure of its global head of equity trading, Mark Northwood, a 17-year veteran of the firm.

FN also reported that Christoph Mast, Allianz Global Investors’ head trader from 2003 until January this year, was set to retire from the company after 16 years. Meanwhile, BlackRock’s head of global equity trading Paul Walker-Duncalf, and Jim Conway, the global head of trading at Standard Life Investments, both left their roles after long careers since the start of 2015.

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