Day: 11 May 2017

Jefferies Expands FX Capabilities with New Hires

Jefferies has hired Brandon Mulvihill and Anthony Mazzarese, both formerly at FXCM, as the firm looks to strengthen its FX business by expanding its prime brokerage capabilities.

Mulvihill has been named as managing director, global head of FX prime brokerage, and Mazzarese has been appointed as senior vice president, FX prime brokerage sales. Both will report into Ray Kamrath, global head of FX at Jefferies in New York.

Prior to this, Mulvihill was the global head of FXCM Pro. Mazzarese was a senior vice president at FXCM Pro, and before that, worked in an FX sales role at Citi.

Cobalt Signs Up Non-Banks, Announces Expansion

Citadel Securities and XTX Markets have signed up as Cobalt launch participants.

Cobalt’s FX solution is set to launch later this year. There are currently 22 beta participants on Cobalt’s peer-to-peer network including Citi, which became a Cobalt investor in 2016, and Cobalt’s technology partners, including Setl, First Derivatives and Tradepoint.

Cobalt has also announced the expansion of its core team and the opening of a New York office.

Devika Darbari joins Cobalt as COO from JDX Consulting, where she was a board member and CEO Americas. She will also head up operations in the US.

Noble Launches Real-Time Post Trade FX Service

Noble Bank International has launched its initial service, Noble FX, which is designed to allow its clients to create their pools of credit, enabling counterparties to clear, net and settle spot FX and precious metals in real-time.
The firm says that its fully customisable and configurable rules that guide each pool will provide users of the service with improved flexibility and functionality in post-trade processing. In addition, Noble claims that its platform introduces an “industry changing” approach to reducing counterparty settlement risk for OTC trading.

Nex Launches Yen Benchmark

Nex Data, a Nex Group business which delivers independent market intelligence and price information for OTC data and Nex Markets, a NEX Group business which provides electronic trading technology and services, have launched the EBS JPY Benchmark, which it claims is the first fully electronic, transaction-backed reference rate for the Japanese yen.
Nex says the creation of the reference rate for JPY seeks to provide high standards across the market.Reflecting the USD/JPY rate, the new benchmark is published daily at 15:00 Tokyo time.

Nex Data Creates FX Margin Ratios for the FFAJ

Nex Data has been mandated by the Financial Futures Association of Japan (FFAJ) to create foreign exchange margin ratios for 170 currency pairs.
Launched in February 2017, the FX margin ratios support the derivatives margin calculations which Japanese retail brokers have to provide to local authorities following the new regulations which kicked in on 27 February 2017. Using underlying data taken from Nex Markets’ EBS Market as a primary source in addition to third party sources, the FX margin ratios are used to support the provision of data in the Japanese retail market.

LMAX Exchange Reports Strong 2016

LMAX Exchange has reported record high profitability with reported annual EBITDA of £5.6m in 2016.
This marks the company’s strongest financial performance to date and, it says, “demonstrates its rapidly expanding footprint in the global FX market – particularly remarkable in the face of a difficult period for the spot FX industry, which has seen a volume decline of 19% over the last three years”.
The EBITDA of GBP 5.6 million is a 300% increase on 2015, the firm says that gross profit was GBP 20.8 million, up 33% year-on-year.

Buy Side Looking for Simplified Workflows

As buy-side workflows are becoming complex, these firms are looking for ways to simplify how they view and manage them, claims Basu Choudhury, business intelligence, Nex Traiana.

He says that, whereas in the past buy side firms used to probably have only one prime broker (PB), today they might have four or five prime brokers, or even have bilateral relationships. Further, when they execute they might do so via an anonymous venues or they might trade against another buy side firm that is using a prime broker.

“So what we’re seeing and hearing is that they want a single panel where they can see their PB relationships and bilateral, and even clearing at some point within one dashboard, one platform, where they can manage the matching, [confirmations] and settlements,” he says.

And Another Thing…

The retail FX sector has long bothered me, as regular readers can attest, and my distaste for many providers in the sector was only heightened when one offered me “expert comment” on what will likely to happen to the euro in the wake of Sunday’s French election result…on Wednesday. This is so detached from the reality of the modern FX market that it makes me wonder how this firm thinks it is providing good service by offering “commentary” almost four days after the results?