In recent years the sell side has justifiably been criticised for its behaviour in the FX market. But should regulators and market participants be taking a closer look at how the buy side operates in this market? Galen Stops reports.
The FX industry has been rocked by a number of scandals in recent years and in many cases the implications of these scandals is only now coming home to roost.
Two of the largest custodian banks in the world, BNY Mellon and State Street, have agreed $714 million and $530 million settlements, respectively, related to allegations they systematically set disadvantageous rates for their customers in contrast to their claims to be achieving best execution for them.
Two UK-based FX traders have been charged with wire fraud by the US Department of Justice, one of which has been arrested in New York. Galen Stops reports on the case.
On July 19, Mark Johnson, the head of global FX cash trading at HSBC, was arrested at New York’s JFK airport in connection with an ongoing investigation by the US Department of Justice (DoJ) into currency rigging.
Two days later, the DoJ officially brought charges against Johnson and Stuart Scott, former head of FX cash trading for EMEA at HSBC, for wire fraud.
Alex Dunegan, founder and CEO of Lumint, talks to Profit & Loss deputy editor, Galen Stops, about the challenges facing the buy side around selecting and evaluating benchmarks.
The WMR benchmark has come under severe scrutiny since the allegations that banks colluded to manipulate it, leading to changes in the way that the benchmark is calculated and questions from buy side firms about whether they should be using it at all.
Dunegan claims that this is a “critical” question, and provides his take on the answer.
George Bernard Shaw is widely attributed with the comment that the English and Americans are two peoples separated by a common language, but the fact is language can very easily take on a different meaning in print than was originally intended when it was spoken or typed. The FX industry has not been taking enough care over the language it uses in communications and that is bait for underperforming clients trying to make a few extra bucks and lawyers sensing an easy kill.
Bloomberg FX fixing rates (BFIX) will be added to the NEX eFix Matching Service, which enables customers to execute fixing interest electronically via the EBS Market platform, the firms have announced.
The eFix Matching service was launched in 2014 as a central market utility for reducing benchmark fixing risk, NEX says that it has seen a growth of 25 percent API to 65 percent API execution since 2014, driven by the continued trend towards automation and a shift in the way banks manage client fixing orders.
Shortly after we published the news that Richard Usher, Rohan Ramchandani and Chris Ashton, the three members of the now notorious “Cartel” chat room, were found not guilty of FX market manipulation by a New York court last Friday, my phone started buzzing.
Lots of the activity was WhatsApp messages and phone calls from various industry sources wanting to chime in regarding the decision, and one thing that has been interesting in the intervening time is that my sources seem to be split about whether they’re surprised regarding the outcome of the case.
“I know that they only release choice bits of the chat room transcripts to the public, but what came out looked pretty damning to me. I’m surprised that they’ve been able to get out of this one,” opines one market source.