City traders are asking UK and Europe for cutting short the trading hours as it is not good for their mental and physical health. They want work life balance through family-friendly hours.
“It’s hard to find childcare at five o’clock in the morning,” said April Day, head of equities at the Association for Financial Markets in Europe (AFME).
They want to work from 9:00 to 16:00 rather than working from 8:00 to 16:30 leads to a stressful condition. This would cut pressure on traders and attract a more diverse range of workers, it said.
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It is been observed that stock market trading is actually male- subjugated and lags behind in certain financial services offering attractive roles of women.
The AFME’s Mrs. Day said her organization had been promoting stock exchanges in London, Paris, Germany and the Nordic region.
The London Stock Exchange is thinking of setting a consultation on the plea.
Working hours in UK and Europe are normally 8.5 whereas in US exchanges 6.5 and Asia 6.
A smaller intake of women in junior positions means that there are relatively few women in senior management positions in investment and banking trading, Ms. Day said further saying that managing work and childcare responsibilities can be a challenge for both men and women.
Nikki Martin has worked in the City for almost 20 years as a money manager and trader. After having a daughter she needed to hire a nanny so she could leave the house at 05:30 to arrive at work on time.
Sticking in work and client meetings sometimes means late nights.
“Client dinners let me go to bed at, say, eleven with a four-thirty alarm is not pleasant, not to mention the fact that I don’t see my child as much as I would like to,” regretted by her.
“It is a long day, it is a nerve-wracking job and doing these five days a week leads to burn out,” she says.
Nowadays she works one or two days a week from home. But she knows so many women that have left the industry or have chosen other certain areas because “bringing up a child is just not compatible with the job”.
Galina Dimitrova, director of capital markets at the Investment Association, concurred that they know of health worsening incidents due to their working hours.
The London Stock Exchange said it strongly supported improving diversity and place of work culture in the City.
It said the call from the trader associations was “an important suggestion for a European-wide adjustment to trading hours”.
“We intend to consider the request in a formal consultation with London Stock Exchange’s global members and customers,” it added.
“Shorter trading hours in my mind would undoubtedly go some way towards rectifying this issue.”