The rise of Python!


Vice President
I've been in the industry for a few years now, mostly on the financial IT side and have worked for some of the largest firms on the street and one thing I've started to notice is the rise of Python for rapid prototyping for models/strategy dev, tools automation, and data parsing.

Has anyone else notice Python becoming a viable force on many trading desks these days? I work for a fairly large stat/arb desk and ~35% of our code base is now Python and increasing at a rapid rate.

I really love python myself I started using it about 2-3 years back I just thought I would put this out there to see if anyone else is taking notice?


Vice President
What is the 65% being of?
I know a lot of Quantnet members have learned Python as a side skill on their own time in addition to the must have C++/C#. I think it's a great skill to pick up to improve one's employability.

I also noticed a few people here has taken Python seriously since we have mentioned it on QN more often the past year or so.

Andy mostly C++, we do have quite a few who use Matlab and SAS but for the core of the systems its mostly multi-threaded C++


Older and Wiser
Massive set of EXCELLENT libraries, easy to read code so very easy to maintain, dual paradigms (functional and OO programming), extremely good community.
Massive set of EXCELLENT libraries, easy to read code so very easy to maintain, dual paradigms (functional and OO programming), extremely good community.

Yeah the community is very friendly - too friendly if you ask me...;)
How many people are using optimised Python, i.e. NumPy and SciPy, in production financial applications? Is it "fast enough"?
What I'm really asking is whether anyone is considering replacing some of their large C++/Java code bases with Python, in order to obtain the advertised benefits. These benefits would include ease of maintenance, rapid development time, less code to debug, no compilation steps etc.

I can see arguments AGAINST replacing the code - primarily on the basis of "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" - but surely on such large codebases, development time becomes an issue - especially with regards to debugging.

Does anybody have any examples of where they've made the switch, successfully?
I'm a big proponent of Python, and I've seen it used in some really cool applications. Alain mentioned all of the big-ticket advantages. I'll add the open source aspect of it, because I like being able to look into the code to see how things are implemented...usually a great way to get a more advanced view of a programming language.
Indeed...I am also a big fan of open source. When I previously worked on a large web application with Python/Django (the web framework) there were times when we needed to patch the Django code for our own use. This would not have been possible using a technology such as ASP.NET MVC.
Looks like some interesting topics in the courses. I'd be very interested in having a play around with more of the modules in SciPy, I tend to stick with NumPy only at the moment.
On Demand Valuation Suite in Python

Hi there,

I am new to Quantnet and just became aware of it due to this interesting thread about Python.

We ourselves use Python as our base technology. We have implemented a complete Web based valuation suite in Python (DEXISION - Real-Time Financial Engineering) and do also lots of other stuff in Python. In fact, we (i.e. Visixion GmbH - VISIXION - Financial Engineering) are a firm believer in the power of Python for financial engineering, valuation, risk management, etc.

Also maybe of interest for you: the cover story of the upcoming Wilmott Magazine March issue will be about Python in the financial services industry (I have been interviewed for this).

Would like to hear more about your experiences with Python in front office environments.