Time to see what these lucrative trading regions were like. I set my controls for the heart of the Sinq Liaison region, so to speak, and encountered my first trade hub.
Years of on-and-off trading, but the first time I'd really noticed markets quite like this. Trade hub regional markets aren't your bog-standard buy-and-sell anywhere type affairs - instead there seem to be two separate markets going on in the order books - the trade hub venue itself, and then much wider spreads throughout the rest of the region.
All sorts of questions crop up. The main one, obviously, is can you make money? The traded volumes are huge but are they all in the hub, where the competition is likely to be much tighter, or is there scope to trade wider spreads in the rest of the region? What sorts of flows are there between the hub stations and other systems? Do haulers pick things up cheaply and transport them to the hub?
Next step is probably to start sampling the live order books, and see how things move. Order book queries, here we come.