Sucden Financial has appointed Noel Singh as head of e-FX business development, where he will lead the firm’s growth of its non-bank FX prime brokerage business.
In his new role Singh will be tasked with targeting institutional firms, including asset managers, hedge funds and prop trading houses.
Sucden says that his appointment comes as part of a significant investment plan to expand the company’s FX business. This plan includes the introduction of Cobalt DL, utilising blockchain derived technology, which the firm claims can significantly cut post-trade costs and mitigate risk when trading across multiple venues.
After the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) Triennial FX Survey revealed last year that the industry has shrunk in terms of notional volumes for the first time in 15 years, speakers at Forex Network London outlined the factors that could help this market get back to growth.
During the discussion the speakers on the panel outlined a number of issues that have constrained trading volumes over the past three years, including technology shortcomings, a lack of investment in some areas of the market, and regulatory challenges.
Against this background, the question was put to the panellists, how does the FX industry get back to the kind sustainable growth that it witnessed between 2001 and 2016?
As access to credit has becoming increasingly constrained in the FX market, Noel Singh head of e-FX business development at Sucden Financial, explains that this is only factor at play in the evolving prime services space.
Questioned on the new credit reality in FX markets, Singh responded: “I think credit is only one aspect of the story and I think that post-SNB, when the top tier prime brokers lost money because their clients couldn’t make good the losses, that started it, but I think it’s now the concept of how much is the wallet worth to the prime broker.”
Sucden Financial has launched an OTC FX options service. The new offering is designed to provide users with the ability to price their own option structures online and benchmark those prices against independent data for greater transparency.
It will offer clients the choice of trading via an online trading platform or traditional voice methods.
Talking to Profit & Loss about the launch, Pritesh Ruparel, Sucden’s head of FX options origination and structuring, identifies three main goals for the new service. The first is improving the cost and availability of data for clients, the second is providing access to good liquidity and the third is improving the overall user experience for Sucden clients trading FX options.
Following the launch of Sucden Financial’s new OTC FX options service, Galen Stops talks to Noel Singh, head of e-FX business development at the brokerage, about how it’s planning to diversify its FX offering.
Despite having an FX franchise that is over 30 years old, an e-FX offering that has been around for more than eight years and a balance sheet of over $100 million, Sucden Financial is not exactly a household name in the wholesale FX market.
But the firm is now working to change that as it seeks to diversify its FX business in response to changing market conditions.
Sucden Financial has implemented SmartTrade Technologies’ fully hosted FX solution, LiquidityFX.
LiquidityFX will provide Sucden with connectivity to multiple liquidity providers, aggregation, order routing, pricing and distribution, as well as a fully integrated order management system.
SmartTrade is also providing Sucden with its LiquidityFX credit margin module, which is designed to allow end clients to trade larger amounts and leverage their cash margin while enabling Sucden to monitor and manage their risk coverage in real time.
“SmartTrade were well placed to provide us with the necessary tools to help us accomplish our expansion plans.” comments Wayne Roworth, co-head of e-FX at Sucden.
"Prime-of-Prime" has become something of an umbrella term these days, used by many firms operating very different business models. So Profit & Loss asked a number of firms that place themselves in this category exactly what constitutes a "true" prime-of-prime service provider.
Galen Stops takes a look at some of the potential risk concerns associated with the prime-of-prime model in FX.
I n a recent survey conducted by Profit & Loss 57.25% of respondents said that they think the trend towards more firms using prime-of-primes (PoPs) rather than traditional FX prime brokers (FXPBs) could increase the impact of a shock event.
This is in contrast to 27.48% who said that it won’t and 15.27% who think the impact of a shock event would be unaffected by this change. The logic underpinning this concern is based on the fact that risk is increasingly being pushed towards less well-capitalised institutions.
The traditional assumption in the FX industry is that accessing a bank prime broker is always preferable to using a prime-of-prime. Galen Stops speaks to service providers seeking to challenge that assumption.
“One thing that’s quite interesting is that in the mindset of the FX industry, there’s a certain hierarchy,” says Jonathan Brewer, managing director of IS Prime. “There’s basically an assumption that if you want to participate in the FX market, then the pinnacle provider that you should aim for is a tier one prime broker (PB), and then you should only go and look for a prime-of-prime if, for whatever reason, your face didn’t fit at a tier one PB.”
Although to some degree this hierarchy might be psychologically driven, there are also very valid reasons why market participants might prefer an FXPB to a prime-of-prime (PoP) offering.
Darren Barker has joined Sucden Financial’s FX team to help expand its institutional client base, selling the firm’s range of electronic and voice services.
Barker has over 30 years of experience in FX and specialises in selling a full range of FX products to institutional firms, including hedge funds, CTAs, private equity funds and banks.
He joins the firm from RJ O’Brien, where he was a senior director for sales and trading. Previous roles included senior sales and trading positions at Natixis, Unicredit, JPMorgan, Bank of America, UBS, Citi and Deutsche Bank.
“Sucden Financial is a highly reputable foreign exchange participant, with a strong financial position, experienced teams and established trading and support infrastructure,” says Barker. “The ambitions to grow and broaden the firm’s client base, together with the existing capability to offer a full range of instruments make it a great fit for me.”
Peter Brooks, co-head of e-FX at Sucden Financial adds, “We are delighted to welcome Darren. He has a wealth of experience and expertise to help us expand our institutional FX services to a broader client base.”
Phil Kim has joined Sucden Financial as head of e-FX sales for the Asia Pacific (APAC) region.
Based in Hong Kong, Kim joins from LMAX Exchange where he had been working as the head of institutional sales for APAC since 2015.
Prior to that, Kim spent over nine years with FXCM, where he was a vice president.
Sucden Financial has partnered with FairXchange, to provide its e-FX clients and partners with independent analysis of execution performance.
FairXchange is a data science firm specialising in microstructural analysis. It will supply Sucden with its Horizon platform, which provides users with tools to manage their e-FX businesses.
Wayne Roworth, co-head of e-FX at Sucden, says: "Partnering with FairXchange has enabled us to further enhance our client offering, as we remain at the forefront of innovation in our space. The need for transparent, independent data on performance has never been greater; it informs discussions with our clients and valued liquidity partners, as well as giving us unparalleled insight into our own business.”
Michael Davies has been appointed global head of sales at Stater Global Markets, joining after over 14 years at Sucden Financial where he was head of e-FX sales EMEA.
Stater says the newly created role is “a major development” for the FCA-regulated prime of prime brokerage, following its announcement that it plans to build a sales function. The firm has also appointed Max Moriarty to an EMEA sales role, reporting to Davies.
Davies joined Sucden Financial in 2004 as a research analyst before becoming head of research in 2007.
Ayhan Gurcuoglu has been appointed by Stater Global Markets as regional sales manager (Turkey). He joins from Sucden Financial, where he was also regional manager for Turkey.
In addition to three years at Sucden Financial, Gurcuoglo was at Sanko Securities for five years, where he progressed from financial dealer to foreign markets assistant manager and was, the firm says, instrumental in building up the organisation’s FX and CFD departments. His career history also includes working at Tera Brokers and at Raymond James in Turkey.