Month: April 2018

Barings Makes Smart Hire

Barings has announced the appointment of Dr Christopher Smart as head of macroeconomic and geopolitical research at the firm.
Dr Smart will lead a newly-established team to explore the impact of economic and political developments on financial markets and lead a team that will draw on the analysis of Barings’ 600+ global investment professionals who manage more than $305 billion in public and private market strategies.Dr Smart spent six years as a senior policy maker for international economic affairs in the Obama administration.

Zografos Joins FastMatch in NYC

Nicholas Zografos has joined FastMatch as a director of sales, reporting to Shawn Egger, head of sales, Americas.
Zografos was most recently at BNP Paribas, where he was a director in derivatives clearing services sales (DCS) and marketing for the Americas.
Prior to BNP, Zografos spent nine years at Bank of America, last as a director within its prime brokerage group. Prior to that position he spent eight years at the private bank, Julius Baer, on the FX sales and trading team.

CMC Markets Launches “Professional” Offering

Online trading provider CMC Markets has responded to the recent announcement by the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) that retail clients will no longer be able to use their current leverage levels, by creating a new CMC Pro account for eligible clients.
The ESMA changes establish margin limits for clients, rather than the broker-dealers and CMC says the new account will allow clients to continue to trade with their current leverage levels.To be eligible, clients will have to demonstrate that they are capable of making their own investment decisions.

Research Paper Takes Aim at “Unrealistic” Non-Cleared Margin Requirements

The International Swaps and Derivatives Association (ISDA) has published a new academic paper that analyses the regulatory initial margin framework for the non-cleared derivatives market and argues that the 10-day liquidity horizon applied under the framework is “not realistic”.
The paper, written by Rama Cont, chair of mathematical finance at Imperial College London, examines the rationale for the 10-day liquidity horizon applied under the initial margin rules for non-cleared trades, and assesses whether it is appropriate. The 10-day period is double the five days set for cleared trades.

CFTC Brings Charges Against Alleged FX Prop Shop Fraudster

The US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has filed a civil enforcement action against three firms and an individual alleging they misappropriated FX traders’ funds as part of a fraudulent scheme to establish a proprietary FX trading business.
In the action, the CFTC says that beginning in at least January 2017 and continuing through at least March 2018, Michael Salerno and his companies, Black Diamond Forex, BDF Trading LP and Advanta FX, fraudulently solicited individuals to become FX traders by making false statements on online websites such as LinkedIn and Indeed.com and their own websites, in violation of the Commodity Exchange Act.

ISDA Adds Four Directors

The International Swaps and Derivatives Association (ISDA) has added four new directors to its Board as it continues to expand its regional and business diversity.
As part of the move, ISDA is expanding the central counterparty (CCP) representation on its Board to two, and has appointed Daniel Maguire, CEO of LCH Group, who joins Kevin McClear, corporate risk officer at the Intercontinental Exchange, who joined the Board last year. Each CCP will serve for a two-year term, on a revolving basis.

US Court Sentences FX Trader to Two Years

Mark Johnson, the former head of global FX cash trading at HSBC in London, has been sentenced to two years in prison following his conviction for eight counts of wire fraud and one conspiracy charge by a US court in October last year. Johnson was also fined $300,000.

Profit & Loss has reported extensively on the case, and just pulling out a few of the headlines provides a fairly decent timeline for how the case has developed since Johnson was arrested in New York almost two years ago.