The consolidated tape for FX launched by FastMatch today looks very different to the one initially proposed by its CEO, Dmitri Galinov. Galen Stops takes a look at what's changed.
FastMatch has today announced plans to launch a consolidated tape for FX, something that its CEO, Dmitri Galinov, has been working towards for some time.
Profit & Loss previously reported on an earlier proposed iteration of this tape back in May 2016, but the one launched today looks significantly different.
One of the things that makes FX a truly unique market is both its scale and the diversity of the market participants that operate within it. Asset managers, corporates, international banks, regional and mid-tier banks, hedge funds and prop trading firms from all around the world have a real need to access the wholesale FX market.
In many cases though, today, this access occurs via credit intermediaries. This intermediary model places fundamental constraints on the credit available to clients and, subsequently, on the counterparties that they can access.
The feedback period for Principle 17 of the Global Code - dealing with last look in FX markets - is over and we await the outcome. My understanding is that the outcome will not be as clear cut as many thought just a short while ago, but, sticking my neck on the line, I am happy to predict which way the decision will fall. After all, the legal industry is already circling FX on this issue - why give it more ammunition?
So we’ve just published our Q3 edition of Profit & Loss magazine, which includes our prime services special report, and I wanted to share some thoughts about one segment of it.
When I first started the report I was very negative on the prospects for FX prime brokers, over the eighteen months or so I’d heard so many complaints about credit constraints, about offboarding – I don’t think that was even a phrase that I’d heard prior to SNB – and the general retrenchment of FXPBs.
Now obviously SNB was a catalyst for a lot of these issues, but really it just exacerbated a trend that already existed and this was caused by the introduction of new regulations that made it more expensive for banks to offer FXPB services to a lot of clients.
At the very start of June, Profit & Loss published an article looking at why demand for cryptocurrencies had spiked in 2017, with the price of bitcoin rising over 200% between January and the latter end of May.
Subsequent to that, demand continued to grow, with the price of bitcoin reaching $4,950 by the start of September. Meanwhile ether – the native cryptocurrency of the Ethereum network – went from $8.29 at the start of the year to $388 by September.
Over the past few years, some FX prime brokers have gone from aggressively competing for market share to off-boarding clients and increasing their fees. What happened to make the pendulum swing so dramatically, and is it due for another reversal? Galen Stops reports.
Relatively speaking, it wasn’t all that long ago that banks were aggressively trying to build out their FX prime brokerage (FXPB) businesses and competition was fierce. This precipitated a race to the bottom in terms of fees by some FXPBs. Numerous market sources claim that Morgan Stanley was at the forefront of this race, although they note that a number of major FXPB players were not far behind.