Top Headlines

HSBC May Face Extra $1 Billion in FX Fines, US Compensation Costs –Reuters
HSBC Holdings has set aside $550 million (£358 million) more to cover potential fines for alleged manipulation of foreign exchange markets and warned it could face a $500 million bill to compensate US customers sold debt protection products.

Greece Debt Wrangling Hands Surprise to Euro Bears: Currencies –Bloomberg
The euro’s resilience amid political brinkmanship over Greece shows how the currency union is better insulated against shocks than five years ago.

Barclays FX Platform Warned Clients About Volatility Due to Greece – Reuters
Barclays has warned clients of its foreign exchange trading platform that a sharp drop in liquidity and “dislocations” in the euro could occur on Monday amid uncertainty about Greece’s position in the euro zone.

Euro Out of Steam After Rising on Greek Debt Deal, Caution Lingers – Reuters
The euro steadied on Monday as caution over Greece’s future persisted despite a conditional loan extension reached late last week.

Retail FX Clients Call For FCA to Investigate Sector Practices After CHF Losses – Profit & Loss (free story)
A group of 50 retail FX spread betting clients that experienced losses as a result of the sudden removal of the EUR/CHF peg is petitioning the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority to investigate current practices in the sector, Profit & Loss has learnt.

Pound Reaches Seven-Year High Versus Euro on Labour-Market Gains –Bloomberg
The pound reached a seven-year high versus the euro this week after jobs data signalled the UK recovery is holding up and as stalled negotiations on the future funding of Greece weighed on the common currency.

MPP Calls for Industry Codes to Be Introduced Under FEMR – Profit & Loss(free story)
The Market Practitioner Panel (MPP) has warned of the challenges inherent in reforming the fixed income, currency and commodities (FICC) markets, and says enhancing fairness and effectiveness will require a coordinated, concerted and sustained response by the industry, working together with policymakers and regulators on a continuing basis.

Banks Do Reality Check on Report of Capital Controls in Denmark –Bloomberg
On Friday, a report suggested Denmark might be considering capital controls to defend the krone’s peg to the euro. Denmark’s biggest banks have spent the hours since reassuring clients that such speculation is groundless.

FICC Revenues Fell in 2014 to Half 2009 Level – Profit & Loss (free story)
Revenue from the 10 largest investment banks’ fixed income, currencies and commodities (FICC) businesses fell by 7% year-on-year to $69.4 billion in 2014, due to lower client activity amid a challenging macroeconomic environment.

Trading Desks Walk a Tightrope – Financial News (subscription)
A major central bank decides to remove its currency peg. An investment bank’s traders scramble to take cover. The foreign exchange spot trading book is tens of millions of dollars in the red. Grey-faced executives are slamming their fists on the table.

London’s City Keeps Attracting Forex and CFD Brokers to the UK – Forex Magnates
The global nature of trading OTC products, along with sound regulation and an esteemed reputation, makes London a natural hub for the industry, as overseas participants continue to eye the City’s many perks.

East African Leaders Vow to Fast-Track Single Currency Plan – Shanghai Daily
East African leaders have agreed to rapidly push forward the planned creation of a Monetary Union to boost trade by signing a new treaty to expand the mandate of a regional court to resolve trade and investment disputes.

Regulatory News

Yellen Faces Congress Amid Direst Threat to Fed Since Dodd-Frank –Bloomberg
Chair Janet Yellen testifies before Congress this week with the Federal Reserve facing its gravest political threat since the drafters of the Dodd-Frank act tried to strip it of its supervisory powers.

US Authorities Investigating UBS Client Losses in FX Product – Profit & Loss(free story)
News reports suggest that UBS could be subject to an investigation by the US Justice Department following a lawsuit claiming that the bank misled investors regarding one of its FX products.

US Futures Regulator’s Chairman Says Probably Will Step Down Next Year –Reuters
The chairman of the US National Futures Association, who led the regulator during broker scandals that rocked confidence in the industry, was re-elected on Thursday but told Reuters he plans to step down after that term ends.

Company News

Saxo Bank Clients Start Legal Challenge Over CHF Losses – Profit & Loss(free story)
A group of over 20 Saxo Bank clients, consisting of both Danish and foreign members, has asked Danish law firm Andersen Partners to look at whether they can launch a class action lawsuit against the firm to recover losses made after the sudden removal of the CHF peg.

Dukascopy Cuts Weekend Leverage on Euro Trading, Citing Greece –ForeXlive
Risks of a weekend gap related to Greece have led Dukascopy to lower leverage on any pair containing the euro to 30:1, according to an email sent to clients. It will be effective at the top of the hour.

Alpari Japan to Shut Down MT4, Alpari Direct – LeapRate
Alpari Japan KK, the Japanese subsidiary of Alpari UK, which is now under special administration, announced today the pending halt of its offering of Metatrader 4 (MT4) and Alpari Direct.

Market Savvy  

Long US Dollar Exposure Pared Back
Market participants continue to pare back long US dollar exposure, now at its lowest levels since December. Still even with the reduction in dollar longs, further aided by Friday’s Greek bailout extension, there remains healthy appetite for the buck, which seems to be more in a period of consolidation ahead of fresh upside than anything else.

Press Releases

MOEX’s Derivatives Market Introduces New Options Methodology
Moscow Exchange’s Derivatives Market is revamping its approach to the exercise of options. Beginning in March 2015, all options expiring in the money will be exercised automatically.

CFTC Staff to Host Public Roundtable on Orderly Wind-Down of Derivatives Clearing Organisations
Staff of the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) will hold a public roundtable on 5 March to discuss issues related to recovery and orderly wind-down of derivatives clearing organisations (DCOs).

KPMG Releases Alpari UK Update, Claim Procedure and Upcoming Meeting
KPMG has given an update on Alpari UK, including the outlining of the process of a client money pool (CMP) and claims portal that will be available as of 6 March, with a meeting organised for 12 March.

Industry Events