The material on this site is for financial institutions, professional investors and their professional advisers. It is for information only. Please read our Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy and Cookies before using this site. Please see our Subscription Terms and Conditions.

All material subject to strictly enforced copyright laws. © 2022 Euromoney, a part of the Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC.

Fixed income: Boom over for trading boutiques

Salaries at banks too high to compete; Two mid-sized brokers suffer scandals

The rise of trading boutiques and agency brokers that set up during the financial crisis to capitalize on wide bid-ask spreads and reduced bank liquidity is now in reverse. Industry participants say employees are leaving the small dealers they joined and returning to the large brokerages. A survey by US data collector Discovery showed a big turnover at broker dealers in February, with movement doubling since the beginning of December. The largest movements were among the independent broker dealers, while wirehouse outflows of representatives slowed.

"For several months there were high spreads and cheap asset valuations, which created opportunities for aggressive firms to move in. But that has now gone away to a great degree," says Shubh Saumya, partner in the financial institutions practice in New York at the Boston Consulting Group (BCG).

Different models

Competing with the large banks on trading now means having to be efficient in the more liquid, commoditized markets. Saumya adds that in story paper, where activity is driven by a lot of event risk such as in high-yield, there is still room for smaller shops, but "they must know who to target in terms of clients and how to cover them.

You have reached premium content. Please log in to continue reading.

Read beyond the headlines with Euromoney

For over 50 years, our readers have looked to Euromoney to stay informed about the issues that matter in the international banking and financial markets. Find out more about our different levels of access below.


Unlimited access to and

Expert comment, long reads and in-depth analysis interviews with senior finance professionals

Access the results of our market-leading annual surveys across core financial services

Access the results of our annual awards, including the world-renowned Awards for Excellence

Your print copy of Euromoney magazine delivered monthly

£73.75 per month

Billed Annually


Unlimited access to and, including our top stories, long reads, expert analysis, and the results of our annual surveys and awards

Sign up to any of our newsletters, curated by our editors


Already a user?

We use cookies to provide a personalized site experience.
By continuing to use & browse the site you agree to our Privacy Policy.
I agree