Principal Global's London trading head exits $572bn manager

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Huw Gronow, who had been Principal’s head of equities trading for Europe and Asia since September 2004, is to leave the manager at the end of September, a spokeswoman confirmed.

Before joining Principal, Gronow was a trader at BlackRock where he specialised in UK equities. During his career in finance he has also worked at TT International Investment Management, Morgan Stanley and Lloyds Banking Group.

He has been a regular speaker on Europe’s trading conference circuit and was also involved with industry standards body FIX Global, and was co-chair of its investment manager subcommittee in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

The spokeswoman said Growow had “decided to pursue another opportunity” adding the firm “wish him the best and thank him for his dedication and service to PGI over the last 12 years”.

She added the firm was hiring a replacement for his position.

Principal manages more than $ 572 billion in assets, according to its website.

He is one of a several heads of trading to have left their buyside roles in recent months.

FN reported in July that Adam Conn, dealing chief at Baring Asset Management for more than six years, is to join Edinburgh-based manager Baillie Gifford in mid-September. 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 in 2016.

In the same month it emerged that Rob McGrath and Nick Robinson, global heads of trading and fixed-income trading, respectively, at UK fund manager Schroders, had left, with existing staff taking on expanded roles.

Also in July, 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.

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

A senior broker at one bulge-bracket firm, speaking anonymously, said many buyside trading desks were “undergoing a contraction” to contain costs amid greater regulatory and operating overheads.

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