Top Headlines

China GDP Grows Faster Than Expected in First Quarter – Financial Times (subscription)

The Chinese economy grew at a faster-than-expected rate during the first quarter of this year, after US President Donald Trump last month backed down from a threat to escalate his trade war with Beijing and government stimulus measures began to take hold. 


Asia Relieved as China Data Point to Recovery – Reuters

Trump Trade Setback as WTO May Foil US Strategy – Bloomberg

WTO decision could provide hurdles to President Donald Trump’s administration, which has used the national-security justification to impose tariffs on allies and adversaries alike. 

May Warned She Has ‘No Chance’ of Passing Deal in Time to Stop European Elections – Independent

Theresa May has “no chance” of passing her Brexit deal in time to pull the UK out of the European parliament elections and avoid a likely devastating defeat, experts have concluded.

Grassroots Conservative Chairmen Planning No-Confidence Vote in Theresa May ‘Within Weeks’ – Daily Telegraph

Sterling Slips on Brexit Talks Concerns – Reuters


All of Fed’s 12 Regional Banks Backed Steady Discount Rate – Reuters

All 12 of the U.S. Federal Reserve’s regional banks supported keeping steady the interest rate commercial banks are charged for emergency loans before the central bank’s last policy meeting, records from the discussions showed on Tuesday.

Japan’s Exports Fall Again, Underscoring Frail Economic Outlook – Bloomberg

Japan’s exports shrank for a fourth straight month in March as weakness in global demand continued to weigh on the economy. 

Argentina’s Foreign Exchange Regime is Broken – Financial Times (subscription)

When it comes to saving the peso, Argentina has tried everything under the sun, from an assortment of crawling bands and pegs in the 1970s and 80s, to a legal peg to the US dollar in the 90s, to (very) dirty floats in the 2000s. Sooner or later, they all ended in tears.

Emerging-Market Forex Revenues Eclipse ‘G10’ For First Time – Reuters
Investment banks are now earning more from trading emerging-market currencies than from the major G10 markets, as wild swings in the likes of the Turkish lira contrast with relative calm in the dollar, euro and yen.


Why No One Wants to Invest in Currency Hedge Funds Anymore – BloombergQuint

Currency-only hedge funds were once a hot corner of the investment world. From 2000 to 2008 the tally of currency funds tracked by the BarclayHedge Currency Traders Index almost tripled, to 145. Now they’re looking more like an endangered species, with just 49 in operation.


Regulatory News

Futures Guru Targets Libor Replacement – Wall Street Journal (subscription)

A leading figure behind the creation of futures markets in the 1970s is joining the race to replace the benchmark interest-rate underpinning trillions of dollars worth of financial contracts world-wide.

Citi Calls for Cost of Managing Risky Trades to be Shared More Widely – Financial Times (subscription)

Citigroup, one of the biggest middlemen facilitating currencies trading, is trying to engineer a radical shift in the $5.1tn-a-day market by asking trading platforms and rival dealers to share the costs of managing risky derivatives trades for its clients.

Britain’s Markets Watchdog to Review Post-Brexit Rules – Reuters

Britain’s markets watchdog will review its rules as the country readies to leave the European Union, the source of its financial regulation for decade


Crypto News

LedgerX Reveals Bid to Beat Bakkt to Physical Bitcoin Futures Launch – CoinDesk

Cryptocurrency derivatives provider LedgerX plans to become the first U.S. firm to offer physically settled bitcoin futures contracts.

Crypto Market Surges Again – NewsBTC

Bitcoin and most of crypto is surging once again. 


eToro Launches Full Crypto Exchange and 8 Custom Stablecoins – Coindesk

The blockchain subsidiary of social investing platform eToro has launched a cryptocurrency exchange along with eight branded stablecoins.

Financier With Ties to an Oligarch Starts Crypto Derivative Hedge Fund – Bloomberg
Gerald Banks, who has structured derivatives for Merrill Lynch & Co. and managed part of a Russian oligarch’s sprawling empire, is now turning his hand to cryptocurrencies.


Company News

FastMatch Rebranded as Euronext FX – Profit & Loss

FastMatch has been officially rebranded as Euronext FX. Euronext says that this represents “a new step” in the integration of FastMatch into its business and that it reflects “the evolution of FastMatch” since it acquired the platform.

Savage to Head Americas FX Sales at BNY Mellon – Profit & Loss

Bob Savage has joined BNY Mellon as head of FX sales for the Americas.

Guess? Roiled by High Costs and Adverse Currency Impacts – Nasdaq

Guess?, Inc. GES is sailing on rough seas, thanks to rising costs and adverse impacts from currency.


Market Savvy

BlackRock’s Fink says Markets are Poised for a ‘Melt-Up’ – Financial Times (subscription)

Global equity markets are poised for a “melt-up” as signs of healthier economic growth in the US and China reassure big investors that have largely stayed on the sidelines of the 2019 market recovery, according to BlackRock’s Larry Fink.

Gold Falls Out of Favor as Risk Rally Continues Into Spring – Wall Street Journal (subscription)

Gold has erased all of its gains for 2019, the latest signal that rising confidence in the world economy is pushing investors away from assets typically considered safe.

New Zealand Inflation Slows More Than Forecast – Bloomberg

Consumer prices gained 1.5 percent from a year earlier, slower than the 1.9 percent pace in the fourth quarter and the 1.7 percent median forecast of economists. 

Aussie Jumps After China Data Restores Some Volatility to FX Markets – Reuters

The Australian dollar rose to a two-month high on Wednesday after Chinese economic growth beat forecasts and indicated to some investors that the worst is over for the global economy.