Top Headlines

Citi Concedes it Failed to Follow Firing Process with Cleared FX Trader – Financial Times

Citi conceded on Thursday that it had failed to follow correct procedure in its 2014 dismissal of currencies trader Rohan Ramchandani, who successfully fought a legal battle in New York last year to clear his name – but it stood by its decision to fire him.

Mysteries Pile Up in FX Market, From Fed’s Path to China Growth – Bloomberg

Investors in the $5.1 trillion-a-day currency market have some big questions hanging over their heads as they chart a road map for the year ahead.

ISDA Releases Best Practice for CCPs in Wake of Nasdaq Default – Profit & Loss

The International Swaps and Derivatives Association (ISDA) has published a set of best practices for central counterparties, aimed at ensuring greater consistency in risk practices at CCPs across the globe.

The New Hedge Fund Manager Flies Economy and Stays in Hostels – Bloomberg

Dwindling returns and the rush to index funds have made starting a hedge fund harder than ever.

How an $8tn Market Came to Blows over a Lower-Case ‘o’ – Financial Times

The $8tn market for credit default swaps enables financial institutions to hedge their debt portfolios while allowing sophisticated investors to place bets on the creditworthiness of companies. It is also a market where 15 lawyers debating the significance of a lower-case “o” decided the fate of $600m worth of derivatives this week.

Exchange-Traded Derivatives Hit Record in 2018 – The Trade

Derivatives traded on exchanges hit a new all-time record in 2018 of more than 30 billion contracts, according to statistics from the Futures Industry Association (FIA).

Regulatory News

We Must Rethink Our Clearing House Rules: Commentary by CFTC Commissioner Dawn Stump – Financial Times

The EU and US should drop duplicative registration requirements.

MPs Launch Inquiry into City after Brexit – Financial News

The UK’s influential Treasury Committee has launched an inquiry into the long-term future of the City’s banks, investment firms and insurers after Brexit, with little more than two months to go until the country leaves the European Union.

IMF Official Questions Fed’s Global Role in Next Crisis – Reuters

A senior International Monetary Fund official publicly questioned on Thursday whether the US Federal Reserve might feel constrained from lending a hand to other nations in the event of another global financial crisis.

House Democrats to Seek Testimony from Wall Street CEOs, Sources Say – Bloomberg

The leaders of the biggest US banks are likely to be summoned to Washington to face questions from a congressional panel that oversees Wall Street, an early sign that the financial industry will endure tougher scrutiny under a Democratic-controlled House.

Crypto News

Crypto Value Unproven, Blockchain Years Away from Mainstream: JP Morgan – Reuters

The value of cryptocurrencies is unproven and the widely-hyped blockchain technology that grew out of them will not make any real difference to banks for at least three to five years, JP Morgan analysts said.

From Barely a Murmur to Revived Talk for a Central-Bank Crypto – Here’s the Bitcoin Buzz from Davos – MarketWatch

It may not have grabbed the headlines this year like Davos 2018, but when a group of financiers get together, the conversation eventually lands on bitcoin.

Cryptocurrency Firm Robinhood Wins New York Trading License – Reuters

New York on Thursday gave approval to commission-free startup Robinhood to trade in seven cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin, ether, bitcoin cash and litecoin, on its online platform.

New York Stock Exchange Parent Company Has Expanded its Crypto Data Product – The Block

Intercontinental Exchange, the parent company of the New York Stock Exchange, has expanded its crypto data product.

Company News

Intercontinental Exchange Plans Alternative Rate to Tarnished Libor – Financial Times

Intercontinental Exchange, the US exchanges operator, is looking to launch an alternative rate to replace Libor, the tarnished benchmark that global authorities are trying to phase out in the next two years.

Kyriba to Acquire FiREapps – Profit & Loss

Kyriba, a provider of cloud treasury and finance solutions, has reached an agreement to acquire FiREapps, a firm that provides enterprise currency management solutions to corporate treasuries.

Citadel Hires Goldman’s Marcheggiano to Beef Up Macro Unit – Reuters

Hedge fund Citadel has hired Gilberto Marcheggiano from Goldman Sachs Asset Management to join its global macro strategy team to help build a unit that takes financial positions based on forecasts about major macro events, sources say.

BrokerTec Outage Serves as ‘Systemic Risk’ Wake-Up Call – (subscription)

An outage on BrokerTec that shut down trading of US Treasuries for nearly an hour and a half earlier this month has renewed concerns that the platform represents a single point of failure in arguably the world’s most important bond market.

Market Savvy

Sterling’s Rally Finds Fresh Legs on Hopes for May’s Brexit Deal – Reuters

The pound held near an 11-week high on Friday after a newspaper reported the party that props up the minority Conservative government could support Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal, on certain conditions, in a preliminary vote next week.

Euro Headed for Second Weekly Loss after ECB’s Warning – Reuters

The euro was headed for a second weekly decline on Friday after the head of the European Central Bank said economic growth was likely to be weaker than previously expected.

Fed’s Patience Buys Breathing Room for Asian Economies – The Wall Street Journal (subscription)

It isn’t just the Federal Reserve. Central bankers across Asia are biding their time while they monitor global growth, and some economists even expect interest rate cuts later this year.