Wall Street's year in the public cloud: we tracked how big banks are making strides in using the tech


banks and public cloud providers 4x3

  • Wall Street made big strides in 2019 towards increased usage of the public cloud. 
  • From budgets and multi-cloud approaches to exchanges’ use of the public cloud and others’ hesitancy to dive in, we aggregated all our big stories on the topic.
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Wall Street’s relationship with the public cloud took a big step in 2019.

Other industries have already fully embraced the idea of moving their data and tools off physical servers and to servers managed by the likes of Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform. But thanks to fears and uncertainties around the security and resiliency of the tech, Wall Street’s adoption of the public cloud has been a slow burn. 

However, this year proved to be a big one for the duo, as banks showed an increased willingness to move more of their workloads over, culminating in November with one of the industry’s longest holdouts announcing its intention to work with a new public cloud provider. 

We’ve compiled our biggest stories detailing the relationship between Wall Street and the public cloud. 

Some of Wall Street’s biggest players discussed big plans around the public cloud

From moving workloads to opening new offices, Wall Street’s growing acceptance of the public cloud was evident in the resources it was putting into the tech in 2019. We also spoke to tech executives about their strategy around what parts of their infrastructure they felt most comfortable transitioning. 

PayPal is working to handle a chunk of its transactions on Google’s public cloud for the first time. The payment giant’s head of tech explains how that cuts costs and helps prepare for the holiday rush.

Goldman Sachs is putting its own Marquee app on Amazon’s cloud in a pitch to lure more fintech developers

JPMorgan is building a cloud engineering hub in Seattle minutes away from Amazon and Microsoft, and it’s planning to hire 50 staffers this year

TD Ameritrade’s CEO explains how it’s moving towards the public cloud, and why tech spend is ‘the golden dollar’

Deutsche Bank just nabbed AQR’s head of technology to help lead a $15 billion push into digital with a focus on the cloud


Firms also began considering what was needed to have a multi-cloud strategy

As firms began to feel more at ease using the public cloud, they recognized a need to develop a more nuanced strategy for using the tech. One common goal was to be able to operate across multiple public clouds, often referred to as being “cloud agnostic.”

Wall Street is finally willing to go to Amazon’s, Google’s, or Microsoft’s cloud, but nobody can agree on the best way to do it: ‘If you pick a favorite and you’re wrong, you’re fired’

JPMorgan has tapped buzzy startup Snowflake to help it solve one of the biggest issues firms face when moving to the cloud

Red-hot startup Snowflake is adding support for Google’s cloud in an effort to meet Wall Street’s demand


As always, a big concern for firms centered around how much to invest in the tech

While most banks believe a shift to the public cloud will lead to savings in the long term, short-term investment is still required to make the necessary changes. As a result, the resources put towards the tech has continued to climb.

Wall Street plans to spend nearly half its IT budget on the public cloud in 2020. Here’s where firms see the biggest benefits, and what’s still holding them back.


Exchanges were the early adopters of the public cloud on Wall Street

As the central hub for trading, and home to massive amounts of data, exchanges pose an interesting use case for the public cloud. As a result, providers haven’t wasted time trying to recruit them onto their public clouds. 

Nasdaq’s CEO just threw her support behind the cloud and said she hopes to eventually move the exchange there

Cboe’s CEO is highlighting the limits of the cloud even as Nasdaq says it’s on board

Google Cloud and AWS see winning over exchanges as key to pitching Wall Street holdouts on the public cloud


However, some of the biggest players have resisted the tech

Despite the fanfare surrounding the public cloud, there have been those that are hesitant to adopt the new tech. Bank of America had arguably been the most notable holdout. However, the big bank announced late this year it had intentions to finally move some tools to the public cloud. 

Bank of America is putting the finishing touches on a 7-year cloud journey its CTO says has saved the bank billions and improved customer interactions

Bank of America’s CTO explains what’s holding him back from moving to the public cloud, even as the rest of Wall Street gears up for the switch

Bank of America’s CEO says that it’s saved $2 billion per year by ignoring Amazon and Microsoft and building its own cloud instead

IBM turned Wall Street’s public cloud security fears into an opportunity to work with Bank of America on a new product. It’s a bid to stand out from AWS, Google, and Microsoft.

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