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Foreign Exchange

Leading banks welcome EBS platform changes

FX trading officials from a range of leading banks praised EBS on Tuesday for launching a series of changes to its electronic currencies trading platform.

The bank officials say the changes – which include switching a number of key FX pairs, such as EURUSD, AUDUSD and GBPUSD, to half pips – mean EBS has created a more level electronic playing field for currencies brokerage. “EBS has led a collaborative process, bringing together FX market participants in an open and transparent manner,” says Zar Amrolia, Deutsche Bank global head of FX and head of fixed income e-trading. “We welcome this approach and are supportive of the direction EBS has taken.”

Jeff Feig, Citi’s global head of G10 currencies, says EBS’s efforts to revamp its trading system show the broker – which is owned by Icap – “took the time to listen to the market and learn from other asset classes”.

“EBS has proved its commitment to remaining the market’s partner, leader and trusted source of liquidity,” says Feig.

In July, EBS CEO Gil Mandelzis told EuromoneyFXNews the firm had worked with 30 of the leading FX market makers from the banking community and buy-side professionals to redraft the platform’s trading rules, which were published earlier that month. EBS worked with the same group to redesign what it termed systems and policies, which were published on Tuesday.

EBS embarked on a review of its trading platform system to prove that it has recreated a fair marketplace for banks, buy-side professionals and other FX participants.


“EBS has a unique role at the heart of the foreign exchange market and we recognize how important it is to respond to its changing dynamics,” says Mandelzis on Tuesday. “We are very grateful for the support we have received.”

The changes to the EBS platform are set for full implementation by September 17.

“While today marks an important milestone for us, it is part of an overall plan of continuous improvement, innovation, thought leadership and very close collaboration with our community which will continue as we design further enhancements,” says Mandelzis.

The EBS platform will now offer revised quote and hit fill ratio targets set on a pair-by-pair basis, a new approach for enforcement of fill ratio policies – including the cancellation of financial surcharges for non-compliance – and new quoting guidelines for Asia trading hours.

Troy Rohrbaugh, JPMorgan’s global head of FX and rates, says his bank is “delighted” to continue to work with EBS, as it continues to strengthen its trading platform.

And Fred Boillereau, HSBC’s global head of FX and commodities, adds: “EBS’s focus on surveillance and enforcement is unique, and a very important step in providing a platform that supports the long-term health of the FX market.”

Mandelzis is set to host a public meeting to discuss the changes to the EBS platform later on Tuesday.

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