Avelacom has announced the launch of a new point of presence in Equinix’s Tokyo (TY3) International Business Exchange data centre, providing trading firms with faster and more reliable connectivity between TY3 and Equinix’s London (LD4/5) data centre facilities. The new London – Tokyo route delivers the lowest latency in the market – 145.3 milliseconds (round-trip), the firm claims.
The new connectivity is designed to serve the needs of financial services firms, enabling them to access market data and send orders at the highest possible speed and improve overall trading performance.
At the start of 2018, the total market capitalisation of cryptocurrencies was above $828 billion, with many predicting that it would only rise further. Now, that market capitalisation is below $130 billion and continues to fall. Meanwhile, the price of bitcoin is down to $3,688, a 42% month-on-month drop and 65% year-on-year.
But does the price action of cryptos tell the whole story in this space right now? And what are the implications of this bear market on liquidity?
After all, the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) and Nasdaq both plan to launch new crypto trading platforms next year, while Fidelity is also set to launch an asset custody service in 2019. Trading volumes on the CME and CBOE bitcoin futures have ticked up even as (because?) the market price has trended down and there are still ETF proposals sitting on US regulators’ desks that could still be approved.
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s LabCFTC has released, “A CFTC Primer on Smart Contracts”. The primer is part of LabCFTC’s effort to engage with innovators and market participants on a range of fintech topics, and follows on from a 2017 primer on virtual currencies.
“Smart contracts are being used to drive further automation in our markets and may have an impact across a range of economic activities,” says LabCFTC director Daniel Gorfine. “This primer is focused on explaining smart contracts, exploring how they may impact our markets and highlighting potentially novel risks and challenges.”
The primer sets out to define “smart contracts”, including by exploring their history, characteristics, and potential applications that may eventually impact daily life.
Ten financial services and technology firms leading developments in the digital asset and blockchain space have joined together to create the Association for Digital Asset Markets (ADAM) to establish a Code of Conduct for emerging digital asset markets.
US-based ADAM will proactively seek comprehensive standards for digital asset market participants. The group, which includes BitOoda, BTIG, Cumberland, Galaxy Digital, Genesis Global Trading, GSR, Hudson River Trading, Paxos, Symbiont and XBTO, says it will work with current and former regulators to provide rules for the efficient trading, custody, clearing and settlement of digital assets.
Future guidelines will encourage professionalism and ethical conduct by all market participants, increase transparency by providing information to regulators and the public, and deter market manipulation, the group stated.
CLS’s new payment netting service based on distributed ledger technology, CLSNet, has gone live with Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley.
In a release issued today, CLS says that six additional participants from North America, Europe and Asia have committed to joining the service, although the only one it names is Bank of China (Hong Kong), and that the onboarding of several other market participants is planned in the next few months.
CLSNet has been designed to standardise and increase the levels of payment netting in the FX market for trades not settling in CLSSettlement. By standardising and automating the calculation of payment netting, CLSNet aims to reduce costs for market participants and increase liquidity in FX markets. The service was built in conjunction with IBM and runs on the Linux Foundation’s Hyperledger Fabric blockchain framework.
Citi says it has raised a record $7 million through the 2018 edition of its annual e for Education campaign. Launched in 2013 by Citi's foreign exchange and local markets (FXLM), the initiative has raised $30 million over the past six years in support of several key projects focused on youth education and literacy.
The banks says that more than 300,000 students have been supported by the campaign globally through various initiatives spanning 28 countries worldwide. Citi's FXLM business donates $1 for every $1million of FX that clients traded via a broad range of electronic platforms including its single-dealer platform Citi Velocity and CitiFX Pulse for corporate clients. For the first time this year, the campaign also included local market bonds, in addition to FX.
Barclays has appointed Alex Shterenberg as global head of G10 and EM e-FX Trading, based in New York.
In this role, Shterenberg will be responsible for leading Barclays’ electronic FX trading business globally. Profit & Loss initially reported on rumours that he was headed for Barclays in October, when he left his role as global head of FX algorithmic execution and head of e-FX trading for the Americas at Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BAML).
Fabio Madar, global head of G10 FX trading and distribution at Barclays, says
Refinitiv is enhancing the WM/Reuters Thai Baht Spot FX Benchmarks with data sourced from Matching, the firm’s anonymous central limit order book. This has allowed the Thai baht (THB) and Thai baht offshore (TOF) benchmarks to become ‘trade’ currencies using the WM/Reuters Trade Methodology. This change was launched on 1 October 2018 and is available now, the firm says.
Previously, the THB/TOF benchmarks were calculated from indicative interbank quoted rates, provided by multiple financial institutions. Following analysis about the feasibility of introducing transactional data from the available FX trading platforms and a public consultation, Refinitiv says it found that the inclusion of data from Matching achieves the necessary requirements regarding sufficiency, quality and data hierarchy to evolve these benchmarks to become trade based.
The International Swaps and Derivatives Association, (ISDA) has published a statement summarising the preliminary results of a consultation on technical issues related to new benchmark fallbacks for derivatives contracts that reference certain interbank offered rates (Ibors).
The consultation, which was launched in July, covered the proposed methodologies for certain adjustments that would apply to the fallback rate in the event an IBOR is permanently discontinued. ISDA says it received 152 responses from 164 entities to the consultation from a variety of market participants.
LCH says that its ForexClear members have reduced their notional outstanding by $4.5 billion through the use of the service’s compression solution. Citi and Standard Chartered Bank are among the first participants to actively compress their trades at ForexClear.
Compression is the process by which clearing members and their clients can eliminate offsetting trades to reduce notional outstanding and the number of line items in a portfolio. Capital requirements such as those introduced under the Basel III leverage ratio have incentivised banks to reduce notional outstanding.