25 million lines of Fortran

Coding the markets

One of my colleagues is ex Bloomberg. He tells me there’s only one thing I need to know about them: “25 million lines of Fortran !” Apparently they have 1500 coders firefighting, just keeping that legacy monster alive.

And there’s a good reason Bloomberg has those 1500 coders keeping those 25M lines of Fortran alive. Walk round any trading floor, and you’ll see every trader has their Bloomberg terminal running. They’re watching news tickers, checking Bloomberg email, and trading. In fixed income, Bloomberg is the leading liquidity pool for the buy side. If you’re a money manager, and you need swaps, govies, credit, structured notes, whatever, you go to Bloomberg. Consequently, every trader on the sell side wants to get their quotes on to Bloomberg.

Apparently, Bloomberg has been trying to make the jump from Fortran to C++ for some time, but the Fortran codebase and the guys that…

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One response to “25 million lines of Fortran”

  1. […] recent post (which is actually a re-blog from a 2006 article by John Sullivan) unearths the fact that Bloomberg, […]


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