Month: January 2018

Scott-Smith to Leave Millennium?

Market sources tell Profit & Loss that Lisa Scott-Smith, co-head of portfolio investments and head of the currency team at Millenium Global, is stepping down from the firm to pursue other interests.
Scott-Smith has responsibility for the management of Millennium Global’s active currency overlay team and shares responsibility for managing currency exposures for client portfolios in team mandates on a day-to-day basis with Richard Benson, her co-head of portfolio investments. Benson is believed to be taking on Scott-Smith’s responsibilities in addition to his own.

MarketFactory Connects to Moex

MarketFactory has added Moscow Exchange Moex) to its API connectivity solution. This addition now provides FX market participants using Whisperer access to 77 FX venues, the firm says.
By adding Moex as a venue, market participants can easily trade the Russian ruble without having to allocate scarce credit lines to hedge the RUB. Moex sees daily volume highs of up to $30 billion with international market participants accounting for approximately 40% of volumes in Russia. Additionally, trading with Moex provides market participants a cleared settlement model.

Updated Story: Lucid Markets Shuts Down

Market sources tell Profit & Loss that Lucid Markets has sent out a communication to all clients stating it is closing its business effective immediately.
The firm, which is majority owned by FXCM, which holds a 50.1% stake through its UK arm, is a electronic market maker in FX.
Although there is surprise at the suddenness of the announcement and the immediate closure, Lucid has been, according to its latest filing in mid-2017, “actively marketed for sale” by FXCM as the latter continues to divest itself of assets following its rescue by Leucadia in early 2015.

NEX to Raise Brokerage

NEX Markets has raised brokerage on its Select and Direct platforms following last year’s release of NEX Analytics and what Tim Cartledge, head of FX at NEX Markets, terms, “a range of improvements” to the platform including better aggregation logic and sweeping capabilities.
Notification of the price rise is understood to be going out in Europe this week with the rise to come into effect in April, it will also apply in Asia and the Americas in coming months as the new functionality is embedded in those regions.

Blackstone Buys $17 Billion Stake in Thomson Reuters Financial & Risk

US private equity group Blackstone has agreed to buy 55% of the Financial and Risk (F&R) business of Thomson Reuters – a unit that includes the trading platforms owned by the firm.
The deal values the F&R Division at $20 billion the firms say, adding that Thomson Reuters will receive around $17 billion in gross proceeds, roughly what – in dollar terms – Thomson Corporation paid for Reuters when it bought it in 2008.
Thomson Reuters will retain the news service as well as the legal and tax and accounting divisions, it would also retain a 45% stake in the new business, which will provide news, data, analytics and trading services.

Sigelbaum Appointed to Head FXall

Jill Sigelbaum has been appointed as the new head of Thomson Reuters FXall, based in New York.

“We are delighted to have Jill onboard. Jill’s experience and expertise will bring a broad perspective to our FX offerings beyond front office execution,” says Neill Penney, global head of trading at Thomson Reuters.  “As well as driving the FXall business forward, she has the leadership capabilities necessary to work at an industry level to continue Thomson Reuters’ tradition of innovation in the FX market.”

Prior to this appointment, Sigelbaum worked at Traiana, which she initially joined in 2003, and served as global head of foreign exchange at the time of her departure. This role was also based in New York.

Duco Secures $28m Investment

Duco, a data engineering technology company, has completed a $28m investment round by Insight Venture Partners, Nex Opportunities and Eight Roads Ventures. The round also includes an investment by entrepreneur and former CEO of SunGard, Cristóbal Conde.

Duco provides technology that enables banks, brokers, asset managers and exchanges to normalise, validate and reconcile any type of data in Duco’s cloud, providing firms with on-demand data integrity and insight.

Duco says that it will use the investment to expand its global footprint, with headcount growth in Europe and the US, the launch of an Asia office and an expansion of its product set.

TNS Expands Hosting Services to New York, Chicago

Transaction Network Services (TNS) is expanding its managed hosting, co-location and connectivity service to New York and Chicago.

TNS’s new solution, already launched in Europe and Asia, is aimed at low latency trading firms looking to access key equity, derivatives and FX markets.

The service is designed to allow these firms to enjoy the benefits of proximity co-location, such as ultra low latency exchange access and client cross connects, without the high cost and complexity of researching, procuring, installing and managing trading infrastructure themselves.

CFTC Files Spoofing Charges Against Three Banks, Five Individuals

The US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has filed a total of eight charges against three banks and five individuals for spoofing in precious metals markets as well as other futures contracts.
The Commission issued orders filing and settling charges against Deutsche Bank, requiring it to pay a $30 million fine; UBS, which is to pay a $15 million fine; and HSBC, which will pay $1.6 million. All three banks consented to the orders without admitting or denying any of the accusations.

MiFID II: Brace Yourselves, This is Only the Beginning

Although it required a heavy lift from the financial services industry, the Mifid II implementation deadline came and went with minimum disruption. However, as Galen Stops points out, the real change is still yet to come.

So here’s the good news for the FX industry: the January 3 Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (Mifid) II implementation deadline passed without any significant market disruption at the start of this month.  

“January 3rd went relatively smoothly, our members generally reported a largely uneventful launch although the industry is continuing to work through a number of minor issues, which is what you would expect at this point in time,” says James Kemp, managing director, Global FX Division, Global Financial Markets Association (GFMA).