Lloyds TSB Corporate Markets has gone live with a single-bank e-FX trading platform, which uses technology from Reuters.
MarketsLink went live last week and is aimed at Lloyds TSB’s UK mid-cap corporate clients. Using the platform they will now be able to trade money market deposits and loans as well as foreign exchange spot, forwards and limit orders.
Initially the platform is available to new e-trading clients but it will be rolled out over the next three months to the bank’s existing clients, officials say.
Lloyds TSB will be the first UK bank to offer the most advanced version of the Reuters Electronic Trading product – V3.3 – to its clients and will also be the first bank to offer the auto-rollover facility for money market trades on the system.
Helen Woolcomb, head of e-solutions, financial market sales at Lloyds TSB Corporate Markets, says mid-cap corporate clients will begin to see platforms such as MarketsLink as vital liquidity management tools for their treasury teams in the future.
"Many mid-cap treasury departments are obviously under-resourced, but still often believe e-trading is only for large corporates," she says. "Regularly trading foreign exchange and placing money market deposits online should be just as routine as day-to-day banking for these mid-cap treasuries.
"It is only then that mid-caps will access the most competitive transaction rates, simplify their trading cycles, reduce their processing costs and eliminate their transaction errors," she adds.
The platform uses Reuters Electronic Trading, a trading suite with two major components – Automated Dealing and Limit Order Management – and a multi-asset class trading engine. MarketsLink is accessed via a web browser and no customer-side installations are required, the bank says, which means customers are able to log on and trade immediately.
Clients will have the choice of either request for quote or one click trading, together with the ability to conduct live ‘chat’ with a trader in order to seek advice and tailor the trade to their specific requirements. The platform will also allow Lloyds TSB to add new products and asset classes to the system.
Fine Wine Traders Bordeaux Index is one of the first companies in the UK to trial the new system. Gary Boom, its managing director says: "MarketsLink is a great solution for the purchase of timed options and foreign exchange at spot prices."
MarketsLink replaces the bank’s eLads trading platform. Boom says the MarketsLink platform is an advancement on the previous platform and enables his company to easily check, book and recall any previous transactions.
"In our line of business, where deals are done on a daily basis and wines are acquired from across the globe, management of foreign exchange can make a big difference to the bottom line. Marketslink gives us a vital edge, helping to improve profitability as well as the efficiency of our day-to-day cash management," he says.
Lloyds TSB began working with Reuters on the development of V3.3 for MarketsLink early last year. Susan Taylor Martin, managing director of Reuters UK and Ireland, says the project with Lloyds TSB underscores Reuters’ strength in "providing flexible transaction services to the global FX markets."