R5FX: New platform for Emerging Market and NDF FX trading

R5FX, a new interbank platform for Emerging Markets FX (EMFX) went live yesterday in London for ‘Latam FX trading’.

The platform, built using Smarttrade’s technology, provides a new liquidity pool for electronically traded Non-Deliverable Forwards (eNDFs), and EMFX. The platform seeks to lead the market change from voice to screen in BRICS and N-11 currency trading.

Jon VollemaereAccording to Jon Vollemaere, CEO of R5FX (pictured at recent EMFX conference, talking about EM volatility ….time to get your ‘tin helmets on’!)

“Going live with R5FX Latam in London is an important first step, as we build out our dedicated global emerging markets platform”

“By providing EMFX participants with increased transparency, centralised credit and a further offshore alternative, we are doing more than just offering the same old trading tools, we are helping our customers to build markets. Today this is in Latam FX, which will become more widespread as we launch further currencies later this year.

Continue reading

EBSDirect adds FX Options to complete FX product coverage

EBS BrokertecInteresting to see EBS BrokerTec, adding an FX Options capability to their relationship based liquidity solution EBSDirect, through a licensing agreement with FX Bridge Technologies.

The agreement will allow EBS to develop an FX Options capability to round out the OTC coverage for the platform, providing relationship based disclosed FX liquidity across spot, Fwds, Swaps, NDFs and FX Options.

As part of the agreement, Continue reading

Sign of the times, non-bank market marker XTX hires Zar Amrolia from the ‘mighty’ Deutsche bank

As banks continue to withdraw risk capital from market-making, we are seeing the continued rise of the non-bank market makers.

Firms that invest hugely in advanced low latency trading technology, that stand ready to commit their own capital to provide tight spreads and deep executable liquidity across FICC markets, from futures to rates and swaps and FX.

So it is perhaps fitting that after more than a decade building the ‘mighty’ Deutsche Bank’s FICC franchise to global dominance, that Zar Amrolia, the ex-Head of FICC is leaving the bank to join XTX Markets as co-CEO. XTX was recently spun out from hedge fund GSA Capital.

Commenting on the hire, Alex Gerko, CEO and former FX quant trader at Deutsche said:

“I am delighted to have Zar join XTX. He is an industry veteran who has added considerable value to the FX and fixed income markets during his career,… additionally we are both keen advocates of utilising technology to benefit the market ecology and increase transparency and efficiency for the end-user.

Non-bank market makers such as XTX and Virtu Financial and others, will in addition to providing liquidity to venues, look to extend their reach, leveraging their own investment in trading technology to provide more complete FX solutions to downstream regional banks.

Those banks, who have traditionally been serviced by the global players such as Deutsche, may well find that non-bank market makers can offer similar if not superior liquidity in some cases, and even license them technology to use within their own eCommerce solution stack – interesting times.

Nasdaq prepares to launch own FX platform

Exchanges can’t seem to get enough of FX!

Following the recent spate of exchanges buying FX platforms (Deutsche Boerse buying 360T, BATS Global Trading buying Hotspot, and talk of ICE buying FastMatch), we now hear Nasdaq is readying the launch of their new FX platform.

NasdaqSo, what’s the attraction?

Well, for one thing size, at $5.3tn/day, it’s by far the largest globally traded market. It’s predominantly a bilaterally traded OTC market, highly liquid and although decentralized and fragmented into multiple liquidity pools, is nonetheless very efficient and increasingly electronically executed.

The size and liquid nature of the market play to the scale and efficiency of exchange infrastructure.

But, this is about more than size. Continue reading

Markit to consolidate position in FX Trade processing with Dealhub acquisition

Just spotted this on Bobsguide, a very interesting development.

Markit Markit has agreed to acquire Dealhub, the 55 strong UK company that provide FX solutions to banks, brokers and other financial market participants around market connectivity, trading services and trade processing.

The acquisition comes less than two weeks after Markit’s own MarkitSERV announced the launch of its new ‘centralised FX trade confirmation service’. The Dealhub transaction, looks highly complementary, and will enable Markit to rapidly consolidate its position in this space.

As the industry continues to innovate, and in response to evolving FX regulations, there will naturally be increased demand for efficient, scalable and innovative centralised FX solutions, that provide the market connectivity to the various venues, credit-hubs, settlement systems, trade repositories, clearing houses with the associated regulatory reporting needed to enable participants to effectively manage their FX business.

According to the press release; the acquisition will enable Markit to offer customers a comprehensive solution for FX across venue connectivity, trading services, trade confirmation and management, clearing and regulatory reporting.  It will also expand Markit’s customer base among banks, brokers and asset managers in the FX markets.

Brad Levy, managing director and head of Markit’s Processing division, said:

“DealHub is a great company and highly complementary to Markit’s growing FX processing business.  This acquisition adds depth to our FX offering while bringing an exciting set of trading solutions to Markit.  Connecting DealHub’s technology to our network will accelerate centralisation of FX trade processes, making it easier for customers to transact.”


Peter Kriskinans, founder and chief executive officer of DealHub, said:

“We are excited about joining Markit since our businesses are so complementary.  Markit’s scale and global reach will allow us to better support our customers and will also accelerate innovation and further development of our technology.”

DealHub’s customers include global banks, regional banks, interdealer brokers, FX electronic trading venues and asset managers.  The company has approximately 55 people based primarily in London, with additional offices in New York and Singapore.

BIS establishes working group to strengthen code of conduct standards and principles in FX markets

In the recent release of ‘The Fair and Effective Markets Review’ FEMR, into how to restore trust in FICC markets, the report made the following recommendations in sections 4a and 4b:

4. Launch international action to raise standards in global FICC markets

a. Agree a single global FX code, providing: principles to govern trading practices and standards for venues; examples and guidelines for behaviors; and tools for promoting adherence. The Review strongly welcomes the recent announcement by central banks to work towards those goals; (BIS and national central banks including the Bank of England 4.3.3)

b. As part of that work, improve the controls and transparency around FX market practices, including ‘last look’, ‘time stamping’ and ‘internalisation’ (BIS and national central banks including the Bank of England 4.3.3)

Following the recommendations The Bank of International Settlements (BIS), has now Continue reading

Poll results: Last look, lack of time-stamp and internalisation of flows – Which practice is most open to abuse?

A few weeks ago, we explored last look’, ‘time stamping’ and ‘internalisation’three practices that The Fair and Effective Markets Review FEMR, felt needed improved controls to help restore trust in FICC markets.

At the end of the post, I opened a poll asking buyside and sellside readers: “Which of the three practices are most open to abuse, resulting in sub-optimal client execution?”

The results, though limited and highly unscientific, are nonetheless interesting, as they highlight the almost diametrically opposite opinions of buyside and sellside. Buyside readers, overwhelmingly thought that the practice of ‘last-look’ was most open to abuse.

Whereas sellside readers, who are at the sharper end of this, felt that although last-look was open to abuse, ‘lack of time stamping orders/trades ‘was far more likely to result in sub-optimal client execution.

Poll results on Sellside practicesPoll results from unscientific and limited study asking “Which of the three practices are most open to abuse, resulting in sub-optimal client execution?”


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