I recently started reading about Algorithmic Trading. There is a huge potential here for computer science. According to this presentation by Carl Carrie – JPMorgan & Scott Atwell – Manager of FIX Trading and Connectivity: (http://www.jandj.com/presentations/wednesday/AlgoTradingFIX.pdf), algorithmic trading will make up %21 of the buy-side trading. That is huge. Certain futurists even believe traders will be endangered species within our lifetime. I am a little skeptic on that one but I have been proven wrong once or twice before :).
There certainly is a great need for high performance computing, large-volume and real-time data processing in the financial vertical and SQL is ready for that type of game with CLR integration. I have seen very creative uses of SQL and SQLCLR already but if you are tackling these types of tough problems, contact me… I am certainly interesting in hearing about it.
By the way; all Financial Services DevCon material is available at http://www.financialdevelopers.com/fsdevcon05.aspx