Leslie Rosenthal

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Leslie Rosenthal
Occupation Founder
Employer Rosenthal Collins Group
Location Chicago
Website www.RCGdirect.com

The late Leslie (Les) Rosenthal was a founder and managing member of Rosenthal Collins Group. He died on September 16, 2017 at the age of 84.[1][2]

He was a pioneer in the industry and held key positions at the Chicago Board of Trade, including chairman of the exchange and chairman of the Board of Trade Clearing Corporation. He became a member of the Chicago Board of Trade in 1958.[3][4]


Rosenthal began his career as a runner at the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) in 1951 and started his own firm, Rosenthal & Co., in 1970, serving financial and agricultural customers. He was elected to two consecutive terms as chairman of the CBOT in 1981 and 1982 and was a founding member of the National Futures Association (NFA).[5][6][7][8]

He held a number of other leadership positions, including chairman of the Board of Trade Clearing Corporation and director of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and the MidAmerica Commodity Exchange. He was credited with creating two new classes of memberships for the CBOT, enabling new ways for traders to access the exchange. He was also instrumental in pushing for member approval of the launch of Ginnie Mae futures in 1975, the world's first interest rate contract, created by Richard Sandor. The interest rate futures complex became the core product suite for the exchange and transformed it from an agricultural futures market into a world market for financial contracts.

In 1982, as chairman of the CBOT, Rosenthal proposed created four new divisions of the exchange in an effort to bring more traders to the markets and money to the exchange members. The new divisions would be agricultural and associated markets (AAM), the government instruments market (GIM), the index, debt and energy market (IDEM), and the commodity options market (COM).[9] The latter three would be created.

In 2005, Rosenthal was one of the first inducted into the FIA Futures Hall of Fame. He has also served as an advisory board member of the Chicago Climate Exchange.[10][11]

Rosenthal & Co, a clearing firm, merged with Collins Commodities in 1988 to create Rosenthal Collins Group.

In 1989, Rosenthal ran for chairman of the CBOT again on a platform to turn the exchange into a for-profit company instead of a member-owned-country-club-like organization. He also suggested the exchange explore joint ventures with exchanges in other countries.[12] Additionally, he suggested selling the CBOT's art deco building in a bid to raise membership seat prices.[13] Rosenthal lost the election to three-term incumbent CBOT chairman Karsten Mahlman by a vote of 630 to 524.[14] Later in 1990, Rosenthal would hire Mahlmann to run Rosenthal Collins Group's London office, after Mahlmann's firm Stotler & Co. had declared bankruptcy.[15][16]

In 1993, Rosenthal was appointed chairman of an advisory committee to review executive compensation at the CBOT following member unrest after a dip in exchange volume.[17]

Rosenthal was one of the CBOT members profiled in the book "My Word Is My Bond: Voices from Inside the Chicago Board of Trade" by Arlene Michlin Bronstein.[18]


1970 - Founded Rosenthal & Co.[19][20]
1975 - Leslie Rosenthal is one of the driving forces behind the development and launch of the GNMA futures contract, the world's first futures contract based on interest rates.[21]
1978 - Rosenthal is elected simultaneously as a member-Board of Directors-CBOT, member-board of governors-CME, member-board of directors-MidAmerica Stock Exchange, and chairman-board of directors-Board of Trade Clearing Corporation.
1981 - Rosenthal is elected as chairman of the Chicago Board of Trade for the first time and serves two terms.
1982 - Rosenthal was a vocal advocate for the creation of the National Futures Association and served as a member of the NFA organizing committee.
1988 - Rosenthal Collins Group forms from merger of Collins Commodities and Rosenthal & Co.


Rosenthal sat for several videos about RCG and the opportunities he saw.

Registration Information

  • Leslie Rosenthal - NFA ID 0048894
  • Rosenthal Collins Group LLC - NFA ID 0000756


  1. Obituary: Electronic trading pioneer Les Rosenthal. 66 years of leadership. Finance Feeds.
  3. Company Timelin. Rosenthal Collins Group.
  4. Futures industry leaders Robert Wilmouth, Leslie Rosenthal have died. Crain's Chicago Business.
  5. Health Insurance Derivatives. Free Patents Online.
  6. Leslie Rosenthal Biography. Rosenthal Collins Group.
  7. Rosenthal Collins Group Statement On The Passing Of Futures Industry Pioneer Les Rosenthal. Rosenthal Collins Group.
  8. Obituary: Electronic trading pioneer Les Rosenthal. 66 years of leadership. Finance Feeds.
  9. Rosenthal proposes CBOT split. UPI.
  10. Leslie Rosenthal: Executive Profile. Business Week.
  11. Going Green. Crain's Chicago Business.
  12. Cbot Election May `Rock` The Building. Chicago Tribune.
  13. Rare Battle for Top Post Erupts at Board of Trade. New York Times.
  15. Karsten Mahlmann to Head Office in London. LA Times.
  16. Mahlmann re-elected CBOT chairman; fraud overshadows election. UPI.
  17. Cbot Stops Vote On Executive Pay, Forms Study Panel. Chicago Tribune.
  18. RCG Management Team. Rosenthal Collins Group.
  19. Unequaled Leadership. My Word is My Bond.
  20. Company Timeline:Historical Events. Rosenthal Collins Group.
  21. Leslie Rosenthal. Futures Industry Association.