Top Headlines

Duelling Bitcoin Futures Go Head-to-Head as CME Launches Contract – Financial Times (subscription)

The bitcoin futures race began in earnest as exchange operator CME Group challenged another Chicago exchange that had launched the first digital currency futures a week before.

Dollar Dips on US Tax Reform Caution – Reuters

The dollar dipped against a basket of major currencies, on caution ahead of a vote in US Congress on tax reform, after the bill moved another step closer to ratification over the weekend.

Sterling Snaps Two-Week Losing Streak as Funds Add Bets – Reuters

Sterling rose, breaking a two-week losing streak as traders capitalised on the dollar’s broad weakness to add positions after the European Union gave the green light to move Brexit talks to the next stage on Friday.

Philip Hammond Opens London Forex Markets to China Banks – Financial Times (subscription)

The initiative is intended to open a new channel for trading the renminbi in London, supporting the internationalisation of the Chinese currency and bringing new business to London’s financial markets as they prepare for Brexit.

Dollar Scarcity Sends Global Funding Costs Soaring – Wall Street Journal (subscription)

Euro-dollar cross-currency basis swap has only been this far negative during periods of extreme stress.

Bitcoin Boom Presents Risk to Japanese Currencies Brokers: Deutsche Bank – Financial Times (subscription)

Swelling cryptocurrencies interest among retail investors in Japan means that foreign exchange brokers in the Asian country face a “higher risk of failure”, an analyst at Deutsche Bank has warned.

Five Markets Charts That Matter for Investors – Financial Times (subscription)

Blank cheque companies, bitcoin’s swings dwarf futures contracts and QE effects.

The Irrational for Phrase of the Year – Profit & Loss (subscription)

“Pre-hedging”. Who invented this phrase and, more pertinently, what was their intended definition?

Regulatory News

EU Agrees Clampdown on Bitcoin Platforms to Tackle Money Laundering – Reuters

European Union states and legislators agreed on stricter rules to prevent money laundering and terrorism financing on exchange platforms for bitcoin and other virtual currencies, the EU said in a statement.

CFTC Proposes Delivery Interpretations for Cryptocurrencies – Profit & Loss

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has released a proposed interpretation concerning its authority over retail commodity transactions involving virtual currency, such as bitcoin.

CFTC Adds 21 Names to Its Naughty List – Profit & Loss

The US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has added 21 new names to the Registration Deficient List (RED List).

HKMA Offers Fast-Track Model Vetting in Swaps Hub Pitch – Risk (subscription)

Hong Kong’s regulator is offering ‘fast-track’ model approval to banks, as it seeks to become a regional hub for the booking of derivatives.

Associations Seek to Improve US Access to Swap Markets – FOW (subscription)

Revised registration requirements could improve US access to international swap markets – associations.

Company News

Deutsche Bank Enhances Algo Execution Product Suite – Profit & Loss

The impending advent of MiFID II has focused market participants’ attention on the matter of best execution, and while spot foreign exchange is not “in scope” of the legislation, many clients and service providers have taken the decision to embrace it into their spot FX activities.

Cboe Adds FX, Bitcoin to Data Offering – Profit & Loss

Cboe Global Markets’ Data Shop has added historical spot foreign exchange and bitcoin data from Cboe FX to its range of offerings.

Barclays the Latest to Opt Into SI Regime – The Trade

Barclays has decided to become a systematic internaliser (SI) from 3 January under MiFID II for all products including FX, rates, credit and equities.

Citi, CME Implement Back-Office DLT Solution – Profit & Loss

Citi and CME Clearing have implemented a real-time distributed ledger platform developed by Baton Systems, a payments technology provider.

CTAs Navigate “Choppy Waters” in November – Profit & Loss

The flash estimate for the Barclay CTA Index, compiled by BarclayHedge, indicates a 0.06% gain in November. Year-to-date, the index is up 0.25%.

Market Savvy

Bitcoin Hits New Record High as Warnings Grow Louder – Reuters

Bitcoin blasted to another all-time high of almost $18,000 on the Bitstamp exchange, up nine percent on the day, as warnings grew over the risks of investing in the highly volatile and speculative instrument.

‘Fasten Your Seatbelts’: Rand Volatile as Investors Await New ANC Leader – Financial Times (subscription)

South Africa’s rand endured choppy trading as investors awaited the results of the ruling party’s knife-edge leadership contest, initially hitting a fresh three-month high before giving up practically all of its gains.