If the term dark pools did not sound ominous enough, when it first came to light that a consortium of the industry's biggest asset managers quietly had come together to start their own dark pool earlier this year, the effort had a faint ring of corporate intrigue.

The automatic trading system called Luminex and led by Fidelity includes Bank of New York Mellon, BlackRock, Capital Group, Invesco, J.P. Morgan Asset Management, MFS Investment Management, State Street Global Advisors and T. Rowe Price. Together they manage over $8 trillion - roughly 40% of U.S. assets.

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