London, New York, Hong Kong, 17 August 2020: FIX Trading Community, the non-profit, industry-driven standards body at the heart of global financial trading, announced today their submission of the FIX session layer standard and the FIX tagvalue encoding standard for standardization, to the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) via Technical Committee TC 68 – Financial Services, Subcommittee 9 – Information Exchange (ISO TC 68/SC 9). The submission is currently being balloted by national member bodies of ISO TC 68/SC 9.
The FIX Trading Community is built around clear standards and is committed to interoperability with open standards. FIX is considered the de facto global standard for electronic trading and it seemed appropriate to be considered as an ISO standard which is recognized and accepted globally. The FIX session layer and tagvalue encoding standards have served as the basis for electronic trading for 25 years. These standards have been adopted by tens of thousands of market participants and in over one hundred countries around the globe.
FIX session layer standard: The session layer provides reliable and recoverable messaging for electronic trading. The FIX session layer standard has been integrated into a single refactored volume with multiple session profiles, which describe specific realizations of the FIX session layer.
FIX tagvalue encoding standard: The tagvalue encoding is used by both the FIX application and the FIX session layer. The encoding uses an integer number known as a tag to identify the field, followed by the “=” character (hexadecimal 0x3D), then the value of that field encoded in the ISO 8859-1 character set. Each tagvalue pair is separated by the Start of Heading control character <SOH> (hexadecimal value 0x01), which is defined by ISO 6429:1992.
FIX Trading Community participants will recognize an immediate benefit from the higher quality standards documents that should lead to improved interoperability between implementations. Adopters of the FIX standards will benefit from the certainty of the ISO standardization process and the value of ISO branding.
Jim Northey, FIX Global Technical Committee co-chair who also serves as the ISO TC 68 Chair, commented, “The process we pursued to improve the quality of our specifications prior to submitting to ISO by both refactoring and moving to a machine readable format based upon FIX Orchestra should provide immediate benefit to the FIX community. The FIX Trading Community continues to actively participate and provide leadership within ISO TC 68. Most people don’t realize that the FIX standard itself relies upon and uses over twenty ISO standards.”
Richard Evans and Lee Saba, FIX Global Steering Committee co-chairs, commented, “We recognize the importance of pursuing ISO standardization of FIX. FIX is how the world trades, and as global regulators move towards requiring ISO standardization, we want to ensure that we continue to provide operational efficiencies for FIX adopters. The FIX Trading Community is committed to ISO participation and provides resources for ISO TC68 SC8 and SC9.”
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