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Foreign Exchange

FXMarketSpace to ‘jump ball’

It was known as Project Anonymous in its conception. And unfortunately, FXMarketSpace, the bastard stepchild – sorry, I mean joint venture – of FX industry leviathans the CME and Reuters, has remained pretty anonymous following its birth earlier in 2007.

FXMS will naturally disagree with this view and can point out that its volumes in November showed extremely healthy growth, climbing 44% on the previous month to just under $1 billion a day. But rumours continue to abound that the number of clients using FXMS in size is really rather small, despite the company’s claim on its website that it has “the broadest, most diverse trading community”.

In many ways, FXMarketSpace is a victim of its own transparency. It is almost unique among ECNs in publishing its volumes – even Reuters doesn’t feel the need to do this. Being so open makes it an easy target and, although it would never say so, the company and its parents must be disappointed at its performance.

And for that reason this week, despite having been a long-term critic of FXMS, I was prepared to give the platform some credit. It was a bold initiative, and the company clearly has not given up yet.

Word reached me a couple of weeks ago that FXMS was poised to launch what it calls a JumpBall strategy to get it kick-started in 2008 (more detail to follow).

As a journalist who likes to play by the rules and always goes the extra mile to turn frequent rumours into rare concrete stories, I did the rounds of the FX market to see if JumpBall was true.

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