Tag: Fintech

Fintech

Central Banks Highlight Value, Embrace, Fintech

Two major central banks have signalled their increased engagement with the fintech industry with the Bank of England publishing a detailed report in its latest Quarterly Bulletin into the potential for fintech and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York establishing a Fintech Advisory Group.
In its report, the Bank of England stresses that the implications of fintech as part of the wider shift to a digital economy are only beginning to be realised, but says the potential is “substantial”.

In the FICC of It

With P&L’s editor Galen Stops showing his contempt for the listenership by declining to call in to the podcast from halfway down a black run on a snowboard, this week’s In the FICC of It takes a look back as managing editor Colin Lambert is joined by P&L’s founder Julie Ros, just over 20 years to the day she incorporated Profit & Loss.
Although they somehow manage to omit to mention how they wrote pieces for the magazine about Caribbean and Scottish holidays and, even worse, took their own cover pictures, the two look back to the early days of e-FX, which coincided with the launch of Profit & Loss, and look at how things have changed – and in some cases have not.
The names of the leaders in e-FX may have changed, as Ros notes, but our two podcasters agree that there is much that remains the same, in both the single and multi-dealer platform world especially.
One week after Stops and Lambert went to town on each other’s predictions for 2019, Ros offers Lambert to chance to critique someone else’s predictions for the foreign exchange industry, made in 2000, and you will glad to hear that in spite of the aforementioned clairvoyant going onto to become Prime Minister of his country, Lambert shows his customary disregard for rank and gives it both barrels…

MarketFactory Secures Investment

MarketFactory has secured a strategic investment from Accel-KKR, a technology-focused investment firm based in Silicon Valley with over $5 billion in capital commitment. In a release issued today, MarketFactory says the funding will accelerate its expansion into new markets and services for currency traders globally.“MarketFactory’s platform provides detailed data about the currency market that helps traders to innovate. We are very excited to find the right partner in Accel-KKR who understands the market structure importance of our business and growth trajectory,” says Darren Jer, CEO and co-founder of MarketFactory.

Does TCA Really Need to be Independent?

Speaking at the Forex Network Chicago conference, Mike Harris, president of Campbell & Company, discussed the pros and cons of independently provided transaction cost analysis (TCA).

Pressed on whether a fintech firm being acquired by a larger company is necessarily a bad thing for their clients, Harris pointed to the example of BestX, the TCA provider that was acquired by State Street in August.

Harris explained that Campbell & Company partnered with BestX because their TCA product was focused specifically on FX rather than being adapted from equities, and that they were the first to offer peer-to-peer functionality so that firms could opt-in to compare their trades to other people’s, as well generally being at the forefront of the TCA space.

Blockchain and the Internet: Is it a Good Comparison?

The comparison between blockchain technology and the early days of the Internet is one that is perennially made in articles and at industry conferences, but is it accurate or even helpful?

This was the question posed to Cristina Dolan, co-founder and COO of InsureX, and Adrian Patten, the co-founder and chairman of Cobalt, at the Forex Network Chicago conference.

“The Internet was a lot easier to deal with because it was a linear process: you had a database, there were users, you had a web interface and although you were still training people how to use the web interface, you could control that whole ecosystem that you put up, you just had to drive people to the page,” said Dolan.

A Brave New World

At a recent OnTheBlock event in New York, Daniel Gorfine, chief innovation officer and director of LabCFTC, talked to Galen Stops, editor of Profit & Loss, about the challenges facing regulators overseeing crypto markets, why the rules in this space are often more clearly delineated than many will admit, and the key technology trends he sees shaping financial markets in the future.

Galen Stops: As a regulator, how does the CFTC approach the crypto space? Because it seems to me like there’s a fairly fine line to walk between allowing and encouraging innovation and new markets on the one hand, but ensuring that there are protections against potential bad actors on the other…

Stories from the Trenches: Building a FinTech

Simon Wilson-Taylor, head of EBS Institutional, reflected at Forex Network Chicago on the challenges that he faced as the owner and head of a fintech firm, Molten Markets, prior to being acquired by EBS.

“The first thing that I would say to any budding entrepreneurs out there is that building something, building a product, is the fun part and the easy part. Even finding clients is relatively easy,” said Wilson-Taylor, before adding: “The really difficult part that’s kind of out of your control is: how are my clients going to react? How is the market going to react? What are my legal, regulatory and insurance obstacles?”

Going through the different business lines that Molten Markets operated, he explained that consultancy is a good way for fintech firms to generate some revenue and pay some bills as the barriers to entry are not particularly great.

The FinTech Challenge: Scale or Independence?

There comes a point for most successful fintech startups when they face a decision: either join part of a larger organisation in order to scale up their business or continue to remain independent.

There are trade-offs on each side of this decision, as Mike Harris, president of Campbell & Company, noted at Forex Network Chicago. Speaking from a client perspective, Harris said that he could see benefits from either side, but added that when senior figures at a fintech leave post-acquisition it is normally a warning sign.

“One of the things that we watch are the people, not just the founders, but the core people that you’re working with – the relationship managers, the technologists – if they start to depart, either because they’re asked to leave or because it’s not what they signed up for, that’s usually kind of the writing on the wall,” explained Harris.

In the FICC of it

“I have a great idea,” said P&L’s managing editor Colin Lambert. “Let’s record the podcast by the pool…”
Yes, we are back on the road again with this week’s podcast recorded in Hong Kong on the sidelines of the Profit & Loss conference there and thankfully our audio engineers managed to alleviate the worst impact from Lambert’s “clever” suggestion.
So listen in as regular podcasters Lambert and P&L editor Galen Stops are joined by returning guest John Ashworth, CEO of Caplin, who immediately “owns” them by dropping a fantastic Hong Kong fact into the conversation very early.
Topics include a discussion about a very eye-opening chat at the start of the conference which looked at the chaos in Washington DC, the evolution of AI and Fintech and the differing attitudes to crypto markets in Asia and the US.
The podcast also includes Lambert’s observations on some very interesting answers to his questions on the future of the FX swaps market during the liquidity panel, however this week’s edition does come with a warning as it closes out by providing an image that some listeners may find disturbing!

How Will FinTech Shape Emerging Markets?

Galen Stops quizzes Jon Vollemaere, CEO of R5FX, about whether fintech solutions will be used in China, and emerging markets more broadly, to effectively replicate existing FX markets or create an entirely new ecosystem.

Galen Stops: How does the FX market in China compare to those in Europe and the US?

Jon Vollemaere: A lot of the Chinese dealing rooms look like the Western FX markets of the late ‘90s in the way that they’re set up and the lack of technology in them.