Top Headlines

UK Government Confirms FX Manipulation Will be Made a Criminal Offence – Profit & Loss (subscription)
The UK’s Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne has confirmed the government will be making manipulation of FX benchmarks a criminal offence, punishable by up to seven years in prison.

Former Royal Bank of Scotland Trader Arrested in Forex Rigging Probe – Financial Times (subscription)
A former trader from the Royal Bank of Scotland has been arrested by the UK’s Serious Fraud Office in its criminal investigation into whether individuals rigged the $5.3 trillion-a-day foreign exchange market, in a fresh acceleration of the worldwide probe.

City Watchdog: Take Forex Rigging Fines Out of Bonuses – the Telegraph
The top financial watchdog has told the banks at the centre of the foreign exchange rigging scandal that their huge fines should be funded out of this year’s round of bonuses.

Brokers Put FX on Watch – Financial News (subscription)
Brokers have made the surveillance of foreign exchange trading a top priority for 2015, according to the results of a Nasdaq poll. In a separate development, the UK government has confirmed it will from next spring pursue criminal charges against anyone manipulating FX benchmarks.

WMBA Highlights Liquidity Fears – FX Week (subscription)
2015 is set to be the year when regulatory ambitions and central banks’ concerns about liquidity will start to conflict. The impact of market makers retrenching from FX this year is already being felt in currency markets, even in the most liquid pairs.

Forex Scandal Banks Dined With Bank Watchdog – the Times (subscription)
The former senior Bank of England official criticised for failing to raise suspicions about traders attempting to rig the $5 trillion-a-day foreign exchange market accepted hospitality from the banks at the heart of the scandal.

Belarus Blocks Online Sites and Closes Shops to Stem Currency Panic – the Guardian
Country’s government imposes draconian measures after currency is dragged down by Russian ruble slide.

China Offers Russia Help With Currency Swap Suggestion – Bloomberg
Two Chinese ministers offered support for Russia as President Vladimir Putin seeks to shore up the ruble without depleting foreign exchange reserves.

Yuan’s Slide Gathers Steam – Wall Street Journal (subscription)
The weeklong decline in the yuan accelerated Friday, pushing the Chinese currency to its lowest level in five months. Traders drove the yuan to the weak end of the trading range set by the People’s Bank of China, which has been forced to let the tightly controlled currency fall further.

China Eases Restrictions on Foreign Bank Branch Openings – BusinessWeek
China eased restrictions on branch openings and yuan transactions by foreign banks as it opens its domestic financial industry.

Dollar Matches Two-Year High Versus Euro on Fed as Kiwi Weakens – Bloomberg
The dollar matched a two-year high versus the euro amid speculation the Federal Reserve will increase interest rates as early as April while other major central banks maintain monetary stimulus.

South Korea to Revise Currency Forward Limits on Outflow Risks – Bloomberg
South Korea is reviewing limits on currency forwards for banks as concern builds that overseas investors will withdraw funds due to global market volatility, the finance ministry said.



Regulatory News

Hong Kong Finds No Evidence of FX Benchmark Collusion – Profit & Loss (subscription)
The Hong Kong Monetary Authority says it has found no evidence of collusion among banks in rigging benchmarks in the foreign exchange market between 2008 and 2013.

New Trading Platform in Asia and Regulation Steps in Australia – Forex Magnates
Participants in the world of Bitcoins saw a spree of positive news supporting the industry. Australian lawmakers were presented with a new report outlining measures that assess the dynamics of Bitcoin regulations.



Company News

EBS to Offer Data Analytics Via First Derivatives’ Delta Stream – Profit & Loss (subscription)
EBS will be making First Derivatives’ Delta Stream product available through its trading platforms as part of a new Data Analytics as a Service initiative aimed at further enhancing customers’ trading experience.

CME Looks to Local Banks for EM FX Liquidity – FX Week (subscription)
Craig LeVeille, executive director for FX products at CME, talks about the company’s focus on growing emerging markets.



Market Savvy  

US Dollar Looking to Extend Gains into Year End
We enter the final days of trade for 2014 with the US dollar looking strong and poised to extend gains. Still, markets have thinned out quite a bit already, and should continue to thin out, as a good portion of the world is off, or heading off for holidays. Elsewhere, keep an eye on record high US equity markets and declining oil prices.




Industry Events