Top Headlines

Most Asia FX Firmer, Cautious Ahead of US Data, Fed Comments – Reuters
Most emerging Asian currencies firmed on Monday but gains were capped by caution ahead of U.S. economic data and speeches by Federal Reserve officials this week which could add to the case for more interest rate increases than markets had expected.

Quarter of Investors Think Brexit is Likely – Financial Times (subscription)
More than a quarter of some of the world’s largest investors believe Britain will vote to leave the EU in June and have begun taking measures to protect their investment portfolios.

Sterling Insurance Cost Rises to Six-Year High – Financial Times (subscription)
The cost to insure against, or profit from, a large drop in the pound rose to a six-year high this week.

Dollar Firms as Markets Look to Rate Rise – Financial Times (subscription)
The dollar strengthened this week against a host of rivals as investors focused on the possibility of a Federal Reserve interest rate tightening during the next three months.

Petrobras Bondholders See Rare Bright Spot in Brazil’s Currency – Bloomberg
Petroleo Brasileiro SA is becoming less of a default risk in the eyes of bondholders, despite the oil producer’s mounting losses in the wake of an unprecedented bribery scandal.

Has Truce Been Declared in Currency Wars? – Financial Times (subscription)
Marc Chandler of Brown Brothers Harriman could not have been more sniffy about the idea of a currency wars truce being declared by the world’s main central banks.

Egypt Says Foreigners Invested $500 Million After Devaluation – Bloomberg
Foreign investors bought $500 million in Egyptian debt and stocks since the central bank devalued the currency this month, according to central bank Governor Tarek Amer, who said more measures will be taken to attract funds.

Sarao Loses First Round of US Extradition Fight – Financial Times (subscription)
Navinder Singh Sarao, the British futures trader accused of contributing to the so-called stock market “flash crash” of 2010, has lost his court battle and will be extradited to the US.

Japan Looks to Kickstart ‘Fintech’ Revolution – Reuters
A laggard in embracing the ‘fintech’, or financial technology, revolution, Japan is set to ease investment restrictions that could free up the flow of capital in an economy sitting on an estimated $9 trillion in individuals’ cash deposits.

Ethereum, a Virtual Currency, Enables Transactions That Rival Bitcoin’s – New York Times
A new virtual gold rush is underway. Even as Bitcoin, riven by internal divisions, has struggled, a rival virtual currency — known as Ethereum — has soared in value, climbing 1,000 percent over the last three months.

Rupee’s March Rebound Sees Rajan Boost India Reserves to Record –Bloomberg
India’s foreign-exchange reserves climbed to a record as the rupee heads for its biggest monthly advance in two years.

The Downside of Funds That “Hedge” Currencies – Salt Lake Tribune
It seemed like a can’t-miss idea at the time. Investors scrambled last year to get into a new breed of exchange-traded funds, ones that own foreign stocks and use complicated trading strategies to insulate investors from the swings created by changing currency values.

Regulatory News

Bank of America Says It Has Stepped Up Monitoring of Traders – Charlotte Observer
Bank of America this week disclosed additional surveillance it says it has placed on traders in recent years amid regulatory action targeting lax supervision at some of the world’s biggest banks.

Tighter Rules Proposed for Banks’ Credit Risk – Financial Times (subscription)
The biggest lenders to corporates may have to hold even more capital as a result of proposed new rules that would curb how much flexibility banks have to assess the risk of their loan books.

Contest for Top PRA Post Enters Final Straight – Financial Times (subscription)
The new head of the UK’s banking and insurance supervisor is expected to be named this week, ending a game of musical chairs between top UK officials.

Turkish Central Bank Says Took ‘Measured’ Step Towards Simplifying Policy –Reuters
The Turkish Central Bank said on Friday it decided to take a “measured” step towards policy simplification at its meeting this week, given the easing in global volatility and the lessening need for a wide interest rate corridor.

MiFID II and MAR: A Test for Trading Algorithms – ITProPortal
With recent changes to the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID II), tighter regulations are on the horizon. All firms using any form of trading algorithm need to invest in a new way of testing their algorithms or face ceasing trading, as MiFID II places stringent algorithm testing requirements on both buy and sell side investment firms.

Company News

Why Currency Headwinds Are Going To Define Earnings In 2016 – Seeking Alpha
Companies that do business outside of the USA have substantial forex exposure. This exposure can be an asset, if properly managed – but often it is a liability. Recently, the trend in corporate accounting has been to blame “currency headwinds” which can be a good excuse for up to $10 billion in losses. Did these executives ever hear about hedging?

How The $US’s Steady Decline is Making iPhone Maker Apple Happy –Australian Financial Review
Don’t obsess about the svelte new iPhone or the company’s courtroom battles over privacy and national security. Instead, if you’re interested in Apple as the world’s most valuable company, the biggest news affecting it lately arguably comes from the foreign currency markets.

Nomura Said to Plan Cutting About 20% of North America Staff – Bloomberg
Nomura Holdings Inc. may dismiss about 20 percent of its workforce in North America, according to people with knowledge of the situation, joining a growing number of competitors shrinking Wall Street operations amid a trading slump.

Market Savvy  

Asian Currencies’ Rally Fails to Tempt Investors – Wall Street Journal (subscription)
Market watchers expect China’s yuan to weaken against the dollar longer term, with other regional currencies following.

Gold Sinks to Lowest in a Month as Dollar’s Rally Blunts Allure – Bloomberg
Gold has been thrown onto the defensive by a resurgent dollar, sinking to the lowest in more than a month as the U.S. currency’s rally hurts the allure of the metal that’s been the best-performing commodity of 2016.

A Good Time to Look at Emerging Market Debt – Financial Times (subscription)
Emerging market debt — both sovereign and corporate — has endured a torrid 12 months. It was clear that many asset managers in the area believed the tide, which seemed to lift all ships between 2002 and 2011, would continue rising in perpetuity.

Why a Tobin Tax Could Help to Stabilise the Renminbi – South China Morning Post
The recent renminbi devaluation has been wrongly blamed on rumours of a possible introduction of a Tobin tax by Beijing.

Press Releases

Response to ESMA Consultation Paper on Guidelines on Transaction Reporting, Reference Data, Order Record Keeping & Clock Synchronisation
In principle, Federation of European Securities Exchanges (FESE) agrees with the guidelines provided by ESMA, but has provided additional input on key areas around trade flagging, ARMS, data publication and timestamping.

Cross-Border Renminbi Flows Between Singapore and Chongqing
The Monetary Authority of Singapore welcomed the move by the People’s Bank of China Chongqing Operations Office (PBC Chongqing) that will allow eligible corporates and individuals in Chongqing to conduct cross-border Renminbi (RMB) transactions with financial institutions and corporates in Singapore.

On Suspending 12-Month FX Repo Auctions
The Bank of Russia decided to suspend, effective 1 April 2016, 12-month FX repo auctions, considering the lack of demand for these facilities from Russian credit institutions and its’ shift to 28-day FX repos.

Industry Events

FOW: Derivatives World, 12-13 April in Hong Kong
FX Week FX Invest North America, 12 April in Boston, MA
Profit & Loss Forex Network London, 14 April in London, UK
Profit & Loss Latin America, 20 April in Mexico City
ACI World Congress 2016 – Indonesia, 26-30 April, Jakarta
Eurofinance:  Asia Treasury, 18-20 May in Singapore
Profit & Loss Forex Network New York, 26 May, New York City
FIA: IDX 2016, 7-8 June in London, England
Profit & Loss Scandinavia, TBD September, Copenhagen
Profit & Loss Forex Network Chicago, 28-29 September, Chicago, IL
Sibos 2016, 26-29 September in Geneva, Switzerland
FIA: Expo, 18-20 October in Chicago, IL