The Rucker Park Of Capitalism by Jonathan Hoenig
A venerable part of the traders’ world is threatened, but its tricks and techniques will live on.
The best players in the National Basketball Association (NBA) have all played in Manhattan’s Rucker Park, the cultural Mecca for “streetball,” as basketball is referred to there at 155th Street and 8th Avenue. It is this hallowed ground in Harlem, not the sacred turf of financial markets —Wall Street —that comes closest to describing what floor trading in Chicago has been about for more than 150 years.
Three major futures and options trading floors can be
found in Chicago at present, but the real trading courts are the old, time-worn North and South trading rooms at the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT), located at the picturesque end of the LaSalle Street financial canyon. You can trace almost the entire history of modern agricultural and financial markets to these two rooms, proving that the Chicago pits are truly the equivalent of Rucker Park in terms of capitalism.