Anonymous Monk has asked for the wisdom of the Perl Monks concerning the following question:

Hi Monks,

Read about Perl Monks in comments on a YouTube video. Some guys sayin Perl is used still in finance and banking, trading etc that true?

I'm planning to learn a scripting language, something that can be used for automation and apart from Python, Perl seems to be a good option. Was checking out some videos and some folks said in the comments that Perl is still used in banking finance it's not that out of favour as they say on the interwebs...I was thinking if that's true, might as well learn least there'll be some demand for it.. Cause Python folks seem to be dime a dozen...what say you learned folks?

  • Comment on Is Perl still used in banking and finance?

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Re: Is Perl still used in banking and finance?
by Fletch (Chancellor) on Oct 13, 2020 at 01:54 UTC

    Speaking (unofficially) as someone who works at a large bank: we have a large in-house perl application which runs daily gluing together C++ financial modelling programs that's going to remain perl for the foreseeable future.

    Then again we do also have a population of python users, but (as far as our group goes) that's more used interacting with other groups (e.g. an inhouse API which is exposed via python). Another good sized chunk would be traders working on ad hoc modelling (they love their numpy/scipy/pandas). I personally loathe it, but I would recommend learning python (too) as it's the lingua franca for numerical / financial modelling these days.

    The cake is a lie.
    The cake is a lie.
    The cake is a lie.

Re: Is Perl still used in banking and finance?
by GrandFather (Saint) on Oct 12, 2020 at 20:35 UTC

    Just like spoken languages, the more languages you learn the easier it is to learn new languages and the better you become at using the languages you know already. Perl is something of a grab bag inspired by a range of other programming languages and by the way we use spoken languages. That allows many of the techniques that are used in other languages to be used without much effort in Perl so, aside from being a great language in its own right, Perl is great for prototyping and exploring ideas or techniques.

    Optimising for fewest key strokes only makes sense transmitting to Pluto or beyond
Re: Is Perl still used in banking and finance?
by karlgoethebier (Abbot) on Oct 13, 2020 at 17:28 UTC

    I can talk only for me: I‘m pretty sure that many of the tools I wrote in Perl for tasks like hosting receivables management software, database administration, firewall management, general monitoring issues, hosting airplane MRO software, stuff for the web, backup, command line tools for XML/JSON/LaTeX/image processing etc. are still alive and well. Even some good old CGI‘s. I‘m retired since 3/2017.

    «The Crux of the Biscuit is the Apostrophe»

    perl -MCrypt::CBC -E 'say Crypt::CBC->new(-key=>'kgb',-cipher=>"Blowfish")->decrypt_hex($ENV{KARL});'Help

Re: Is Perl still used in banking and finance?
by Anonymous Monk on Oct 13, 2020 at 20:26 UTC

    Man, I wasn't expecting so many replies!! Thanks for the info folks and thanks in advance to those who I hope add the answers.

    Perl can handle json, talk to DB and image processing? Wow, that's news to me man...I thought Perl is like a better version of shell and awk, may be perl can do excel stuff too?

    Lemme check that on google.

    By way folks, this is not what I get to hear outside!! May be you guys should talk more about it outside of it's like....Perl is not "advertised" well enough may be? I dunno, just saying....I mean this ain't no mean feat...

    Perl and DB? I thought Python was the go to language for that. Sorry but, that's all I hear outside. And you all seem pretty helpful cheerful folks, so there's no problem with the language, and there's no problem with the community. So I don't get why Perl isn't spoken so positively about.

    Anyways, gotta try out Perl...thanks again folks.

      ", may be perl can do excel stuff too?"

      It sure can. Search MetaCPAN for Excel and CSV.

      A module I use often, in a commercial environment, is Text::CSV. If you choose to use that, I'd recommend installing Text::CSV_XS also, as it will make Text::CSV run faster.

      "Lemme check that on google."

      When searching for anything related to Perl, I generally follow this order:

      1. Perl core documentation — that's extensive so I'd suggest starting with perlintro just to get your feet wet; it's peppered with links to additional information, advanced topics, and the like, which should give you a feel for the documentation layout.
      2. Perl core modules — you can navigate here from the previous link.
      3. MetaCPAN — Perl CPAN modules.
      4. Super Search on this site.
      5. A general Internet search. Search engine results typically show links with the most hits first; unfortunately, that means they tend to be older and, therefore, less up-to-date. This is usually a last resort for me; although, just yesterday, I found "Perl/Tk Transparent Icons" (13 years old, and I needed to adapt some older instructions for more recent software, but it got the job done in the end).

      That's a non-exhaustive list; it's really intended as a starting set of guidelines for you. I have lots of other Perl-related bookmarks that I use as appropriate; you'll no doubt build up an equivalent set geared towards your needs and interests.

      — Ken

      There are some folks who find a straight jacket comfortable especially as it doesn't allow scratching unseemly itches, and others who like the freedom to decide for themselves which itches are worth scratching. Python and Perl users tend to live in quite distinct camps. The Python police state subscribes to the "One true way" mantra, whereas the Perl anarchy pledges obedience to TIMTOWTDI.

      And yes, we do like to think PerlMonks is by far the friendliest and most supportive of all the language specific support sites.

      One of the significant advantages of Perl is the CPAN. Other languages have an equivalent, but Perl's user contributed library is the prototype for such things and is more extensive than any similar library I'm aware of for other languages.

      Optimising for fewest key strokes only makes sense transmitting to Pluto or beyond
Re: Is Perl still used in banking and finance?
by perlfan (Vicar) on Oct 13, 2020 at 15:29 UTC
    What are you doing, algo trading or data munging? I wouldn't exactly use it for stuff that operates on the scale of nanoseconds, but beyond that all you have to do is look at recent talks like, "Christopher Jack - Using Perl to parse terabytes of mission critical variable" from TPC in the Cloud over the summer. But I think it is certainly appropriate for a whole host of supporting uses, again just not so much for real time HFT bots.
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