Blair Hull received a BA in Mathematics from the University of California, Santa Barbara, went on to receive an MBA from Santa Clara University. He also graduated from the Harvard OPM Program. After graduating University, Hull spent 6 years in the military.
Having read Edward O. Thorp’s Beat the Dealer, Hull headed for Las Vegas and enjoyed a successful stint as a professional gambler at the blackjack table. He took his profits and went to San Francisco where he leased a seat and became a market maker at the Pacific Stock Exchange.
In 1980 he moved to Chicago and started working as a market maker on the floor of the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) where there was greater volume and more mispricing to capital. He went on to became one of the CBOE’s first Designated Primary Market Makers.
In 1985, Blair Hull founded the Hull Trading Company, an equity option market making firm. The firm was an innovator in using computerized trading to profit from countless short-term stock and options mispricings on a daily basis, simultaneously calculating portfolio-wide risk in real time. The morning after Black Monday in October of 1987, Hull famously bought the market to capture a massively successful trade. Hull Trading Company was aquired in 1999 by Goldman, Sachs & Company for $531 million.
In 2004 Hull attempted to win the Democratic Party nomination to serve in the United States Senate from Illinois. While he enjoyed a substantial lead early in the campaign, Illinois State Senator Barack Obama later became the nominee.