"The Financial Information eXchange (FIX) protocol is a messaging standard developed specifically for the real-time electronic exchange of securities transactions. FIX is a public-domain specification owned and maintained by the FIX Organization. [Its] mission is to improve the global trading process by defining, managing, and promoting an open protocol for real-time, electronic communication between industry participants, while complementing industry standards.
From the 2002-04 FPL Position Statement: "This announcement reflects a position from FPL on the XML related developments of the FPL sponsored ISO XML working group currently working with the ISO 15022 XML Working Group (WG 10). It is expected that FPL will release an updated version of the FIX Protocol specification in 2002 to include fixed income related and other minor changes to the current FIX 4.3 specification. This will occur after the FPL Fixed Income Working Group (FIWG) has defined and submitted the fixed income related changes to the FIX Protocol work which is based on the gap analysis conducted between the FIX 4.3 release in August 2001 and the Bond Market Association Plain English documents. It is the current practice of the FPL Technical Committee to release the FIX Protocol specification with both traditional "tag=value" and FIXML syntax. Since a new version of the FIX Specification will be produced by the end of the year, FPL will produce a FIXML version based on the current FIXML design rules. This release will include both DTD and XML Schema formats. Prior to the release of a new version, FPL expects to create a FIXML XML Schema version of its current FIXML versions (4.1, 4.2, and 4.3). The FIXML XML Schema and DTD will validate the same XML instance (message). FPL is working with other industry groups under the umbrella of WG 10. WG 10 is developing a solution that focuses on standardizing the way standards are developed using business analysis and design techniques, agreeing on a common set of XML design rules, and establishing a standards repository which will contain the components of the standards. The main goal will be to integrate existing standards in the ISO 15022 Repository, by extracting their business information and defining a corresponding set of ISO 15022 compliant standards. The FPL sponsored ISO XML Working Group has been actively participating in WG 10. The group is responsible for the development of the pre-trade and trade sections of the ISO 15022 Standards Repository. They have recently completed work on the indication of interest message flows and are beginning work on the order processing aspects of the FIX Protocol. The scope of the FPL ISO XML Working Group is to reverse engineer the contents of the FIX Specification into the ISO 15022 Standards Repository. The current focus is on the pre-trade and trade activities of FIX, however, it is expected that FIX will also have participation in the post-trade through pre-settlement group being established by WG 10 to support the various standards options now emerging in the marketplace for post-trade messaging (i.e. GSTPA, Omgeo, etc). FPL feels it is important for WG 10 to provide the industry with guidance on how to use the new ISO 15022 XML standard. They expect to work with WG 10 on a framework, which will explain the technology and migration options. Following the release of the FIWG enhanced version of the FIX Specification, FPL will need to make a decision regarding the migration of FIXML to ISO XML. Some of this decision will be based the success of the work with WG 10, industry acceptance of XML and FPL's future scope..."
"The FIX Protocol specification is maintained by the FIX Technical Committee, which receives its direction from international Steering Committees as well as focused Working Groups made up of industry participants such as fund managers, brokerages, exchanges, and software vendors. The FIX Steering Committee and Technical Subommittee sponsor working groups to address specific business- or implementation-related issues with the goal of improving the FIX Protocol by identifying appropriate areas to extend or enhance its functionality."
"The FIX Protocol, as a cooperative effort of principal asset management and brokerage firms in the US and Europe, has evolved to an effective standard for real-time electronic communication. Shortened settlement dates, straight through processing, and increased interest in electronic connectivity has positioned FIX to be major component of real-time electronic trading systems. [As proposed], FIXML is a structured, validated Extensible Markup Language (XML) derived grammar that is encapsulated within the standard FIX message. This format leaves the FIX session handling intact and minimizes the impact to existing implementations. As an XML-derived language, FIXML messages can be validated by standard parsers and take advantage of a flexible message structure. FIXML is the FIX Markup Language for application messages. It is an XML-derived language, encompassing a series of Document Type Definitions (DTDs) which define the formal representation of FIXML messages. These DTDs will be maintained and versioned in the same manner as the FIX specification. Since FIXML is an XML-based language, it can be parsed/validated by any of the widely available XML parsers, and is positioned to evolve with the XML standard in areas such as datatype validation."
FIX and OFX: what's the difference? "Both FIX and OFX were designed to communicate financial information. The resemblance between the two protocols doesn't go much further than that at present. OFX is very retail-focused, while FIX targets institutional business. At a more technical level, OFX is a query-response protocol much like HTTP, while FIX is a connected, session-based protocol.
- FIX Organization Home Page
- FIX Protocol Specification Documents
- First Asian FIX Conference. "The Life Cycle of a Trade: Achieving a Seamless Front to Back Process Utilising FIX and STP." March 20, 2003. Conrad Hotel, Hong Kong.
- [April 05, 2002] "FIX Protocol Limited (FPL) XML Position Statement -- April 2002." By FIX Protocol Ltd. "It is expected that FPL will release an updated version of the FIX Protocol specification in 2002 to include fixed income related and other minor changes to the current FIX 4.3 specification..." See the excerpt above.
- [June 8, 2001] FIX 4.3 Specification. ZIP file. "This is the FIRST DRAFT of the FIX 4.3 specification. The ZIP file includes 7 volumes (re-structured specification) and the Release Notes. Comments can be made under Discussion, "FIX 4.3 Changes". Major changes in FIX 4.3 include: (1) Restructued the specification into 7 volumes - see VOLUME INDEX in Volume 1; (2) Dual syntax of traditional tag-equals-value and XML-based FIXML - FIXML versions not in this draft; (3) Fixed Income product support; (4) Collective Investment Vehicles (CIV) product (Mutual Funds, Unit Trusts, etc) support; (5) Enhanced Derivatives product support; (6) Support for swaps and multi-leg instrument orders' (7) 'Streetside' trade capture reporting' (8) Enhancements to security and trading session definition and requests (9) Additional support for Asia/Pacific and Japanese requirements." [cache]
- FIX Protocol 4.2 Specification, May 2001; [cache]
- FIXML - A Markup Language for the FIX Application Message Layer FIXML White Paper. [local archive copy]
- FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions about FIX
- FIX 4.1 specification FINAL
- FIX 4.1 release notes
- FIX Technical Committee
- [November 05, 2002] "Web Services on Wall Street -- Inside STP." By Gunjan Santami. From Integration Developer News (November 04, 2002). Case Study. "Straight-through Processing (STP), a solution that automates the end-to-end processing of transactions for all financial instruments from initiation to resolution, is set to revolutionize the financial industry. STP will streamline back-office activities, leading to reduced failures, lower risks, and significantly lower costs per transaction. It encompasses a set of applications, business processes, and standards that will redefine the settlement and processing paradigm within the capital markets industry... A SOA-based framework is capable of providing support for multiple XML standards, such as ISO 15022 [see ISO Working Group 10 - ISO WG 10] and FpML, at the same time, and adding additional standards support without significant redevelopment effort... With the use of Web Services as an enabling technology, STP-related problems and issues will shift from connectivity among different applications in-house and with trading partner applications to the content and structure of the information that is exchanged. The analogy here will be that Web Services will define the standard postal mechanism along with the envelope and addressing format for exchanging letters. What is inside the envelope (the content of the letter) will be defined by the XML-based business process standard, such as ISO 15022 XML..."
- Related XML standards activity for securities and financial markets:
- Interactive Financial Exchange (IFX)
- FinXML - 'The Digital Language for Capital Markets'
- Investment Research Markup Language (IRML)
- Extensible Financial Reporting Markup Language (XFRML)
- Extensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL)
- XMLPay Specification
- Financial Products Markup Language (FpML)
- ISO 15022 XML
- Market Data Markup Language (MDML)
- Weather Markup Language (WeatherML)
- MarketsML Initiative
- Research Information Exchange Markup Language (RIXML)
- Data Link for Intermediaries Markup Language (daliML)
- swiftML for Business Messages
- Straight Through Processing Markup Language (STPML)
- FAML DTD for Financial Research Documents
- Open Financial Exchange (OFX/OFE)