Top Headlines

FX Volumes Dip from April 2018 Highs – Profit & Loss

The latest round of FX turnover data from a group of the world’s FX Committees show that volumes dipped in October 2018 compared to April last year when they hit a new high mark.

UK Financial Watchdogs Seek to Shore Up Post-Brexit EU Accords – Financial Times

The UK’s two financial regulators are negotiating agreements with European authorities so that they can continue to share information in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

NY Regulator Imposes $40m Fine on Standard Chartered Bank for Attempted FX Market Rigging – Finance Feeds

A chat room called “Old Gits” was used by traders to coordinate trading, share confidential information and otherwise affect FX prices.

Barclays Appoints Pritpal Gill as Head of G10 FX and FX Options Trading for Asia Pacific – Barclays

Barclays has appointed Pritpal Gill as head of G10 foreign exchange and foreign exchange options trading for Asia Pacific. Based in Singapore, Mr. Gill will be responsible for developing and driving the G10 FX trading strategy in the region.

Bankers Leaving London Because of Brexit Should Have Better Lives in Europe –  eFinancialCareers

Results to our recent survey on life satisfaction in the finance industry suggest that embracing a move out of London and into Paris, Frankfurt or Madrid is exactly what people in London should do.

Regulatory News

FCA Probes 250,000 Transactions in Premier FX Investigation – Financial Times

The UK’s financial regulator has scrutinised 250,000 transactions in a desperate attempt to trace money that went missing with the collapse of Premier FX.

Prop Traders Excluded Under SEF Reform, Berkovitz Warns – Global Investor (subscription)

CFTC Commissioner Dan Berkovitz says the SEF proposal will create an exclusive market for swaps dealers.

Plain-Spoken Fed Chairman Sometimes Leaves Markets Confused – The Wall Street Journal (subscription)

Jerome Powell has taken a conversational tone, but his communications haven’t always been understood.

US SEC Rushes Back to Work as Another Shutdown Looms on the Horizon – S&P Global Market Intelligence

Wall Street’s chief securities regulator is racing to address a backlog of submissions ahead of a February deadline that could once again partially close the agency’s doors.

Denmark Proposes Tougher Penalties for Bankers’ Failings – Financial Times

The Danish Financial Supervisory Authority said it was considering adopting tough new rules, and is looking at rules introduced in the UK as an example to follow. Under the so-called senior managers regime, the UK regulator has given itself powers to impose fines or bans on the top brass of its main lenders for failings that happen on their watch. 

Reggae. Puppies. Whatever It Takes, Central Banks Want Attention – Bloomberg

Central banks face an inherent challenge in a world where nuance is out of fashion and policy conversations happen in 280 characters or less.

Isda Seeks Vendor to Publish IBOR Fallback Rate Adjustment Data – Waters (subscription)

The vendor will be responsible for publishing the compound setting in arrears rate and the spread adjustment based on historical data, following the discontinuation of IBORs.

MiFID II Causes Research Sales to Fall Again in 2019 – Integrity Research

According to Integrity Research’s latest annual forecast, research sales are expected to fall 5.5% in 2019 following the more significant decline seen in the prior year as asset managers continue to right size their investment research budgets in response to the research unbundling requirements mandated by MiFID II.

Crypto News

JP Morgan Says Blockchain Is Making Progress Outside Crypto – Bloomberg

It may take a few years for blockchain’s impact to be felt meaningfully, but it will provide some advancements in certain areas even as cryptocurrencies falter, according to JP Morgan Chase.

Fidelity is Said to Plan March Launch of Bitcoin Custody Service – Bloomberg

Fidelity Investments is targeting a March launch date for its Bitcoin custody service, according to three people with knowledge of the matter, as the mutual-fund giant moves forward with a plan that could help ease fears of trading cryptocurrencies.

The Hottest Cryptocurrency, Tron, Rekindles Memories of the Bitcoin Bubble – Bloomberg

Memories die hard in the cryptocurrency market, where a digital token known as Tron has almost doubled in value over the past month.

Company News

IHS Markit Teams Up with Cobalt for Post-Trade FX – Profit & Loss

IHS Markit is partnering with Cobalt through its MarkitSERV business to deliver and sell post-trade processing services for FX, and is also making a strategic investment in the firm.

SocGen Plans Investment Bank Job Cuts After Trading Slump – Bloomberg

Societe Generale is planning jobs cuts at its investment bank to drive down costs after a trading slump in the fourth quarter, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Banks Turn to Compression for FX Forwards – Global Investor (subscription)

TriOptima sees 40% uptick in compression of FX forwards alongside growth in rates.

London Stock Exchange Buys Stake in Settlement House Euroclear – Financial Times

The London Stock Exchange Group has snapped up a 4.9 per cent stake in Belgian-based settlement house Euroclear, looking to increase its influence in one of the key utilities of global market plumbing.

TP Icap Hits Out at Moody’s After Credit Downgrade – Financial News (subscription)

The voice-broking firm mounts an unusual public attack, saying the rating agency did not make clear its rating was ‘unsolicited’.

London Metal Exchange Quizzed By Regulators on Phone Trades – Financial News (subscription)

European regulations calling for price transparency in metals markets pose a problem for LME’s phone-trading.

Fintech Companies Raised a Record $39.6 Billion in 2018: Research – Reuters

Venture capital-backed financial technology companies raised a record $39.57 billion from investors globally in 2018, up 120 percent from the previous year, according to research by data provider CB Insights published on Tuesday.

Market Savvy

Sterling Rises with No-Deal Brexit Still Considered Unlikely – Reuters

Sterling rose on Wednesday after declines triggered by the UK parliament’s rejection of amendments to delay Brexit, as investors bet the government would still avoid exiting the European Union without an agreed trade deal in place.

Aussie Shines as Inflation Rises; Yuan Advances – Reuters

The Australian dollar surged on Wednesday as inflation topped forecasts, while the Chinese yuan reached a six-month high in the offshore market before trade talks between the United States and China this week.

Rising Volatility May Boost Yen But Hit Dollar – Financial Times

Much of the sentiment around the recent path of the US dollar has been justifiably bullish. Sweeping corporate tax cuts, the US Federal Reserve’s diverging monetary policy against the rest of the developed world and positive economic fundamentals helped power its rise in 2018.

Japan’s 10-Day Holiday Stirs Concern in Traders and Investors – Reuters

To mark the ascension of Japan’s new emperor, the government has declared an unprecedented 10-day holiday from late April to early May, worrying investors, who say a market shutdown could cause disruption and unsettle the yen.