John Thomas Financial, a US-based provider of retail brokerage and investment banking services, has hired Mike Norman as the firm's chief market economist.

Mr Norman is an international economist and former trader whose career spans over 30 years on Wall Street. He started his career as an account executive at Merrill Lynch Commodities in 1979. He left there in 1982 to become a member and floor trader on the New York Futures Exchange and eventually went on to become a member of three other US futures exchanges (NYMEX, COMEX, CME).

In 1990, Mr Norman was hired by a major Swiss bank and moved to Geneva, Switzerland to set up a proprietary trading desk that specialized in the trading of bond and index futures on exchanges in Chicago and London. In 1993 he left the bank to trade on his own and he also founded an economic research firm that delivered his proprietary research to major banks and institutions.

Mr Norman returned to New York in 2000 and continued to trade actively with a focus in Forex. In 2003 he signed with Fox business network as an exclusive contributor and continues to appear on a regular basis on Fox Business programs.

Thomas Belesis, CEO and founder of John Thomas Financial, said: “It is our distinct privilege to hire a person with Mr. Norman’s qualifications, experience and track-record of astute macro-economic forecasting. His addition to our team further demonstrates John Thomas Financial’s commitment to providing clients with top-notch resources in helping them make investment decisions in these turbulent financial markets.”