The Strategist

Swiss bank thinks about transferring traders to augmented reality

09/21/2020 - 03:23

One of the largest investment banks is thinking about creating a virtual trading platform in augmented reality for its traders. This is how the company is trying to achieve effective and familiar interaction of employees: banks would like to return at least key personnel to real offices, but because of COVID-19 they cannot do it yet.

The Swiss investment bank UBS decided to put its traders in London in augmented reality as part of an experiment, the Financial Times reported. The bank donated Microsoft's HoloLense virtual reality helmets to employees to recreate their usual working conditions - only on a virtual, not a real, trading platform.

The bank has set up a working group to "rethink the trading floor," the newspaper said. The company thought about another option: to install additional monitors for traders, on which images from colleagues' cameras would be broadcast, and thus simplify interaction.

Banks are eager to return staff, including traders, to their jobs, but due to the coronavirus and rising incidences, many employees are afraid to return to offices and use public transport. In September, JPMorgan brought leading traders back to headquarters in London and New York. 

However, employees from the Manhattan office had to send people back to their homes after one of the employees tested positive for coronavirus, Bloomberg wrote on September 15. Barclays did the same with its London office after two positive tests of its employees.