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Foreign Exchange

The new kids on the block: FXMarketSpace

Can’t believe you wanna leave<br><br>It’s been a mixed week for the new kids on the block, FXMarketSpace – the 50/50 joint venture between Reuters and the CME. “The first centrally cleared, global foreign exchange platform for the over-the-counter market,” as it likes to proclaim itself, announced on Tuesday that it has received its authorisation from the UK’s Financial Services Authority as an alternative trading system.

It also trumpeted that it had successfully completed its testing programme for customers, which included a bout of live trading.

So, all appears to be well at the nascent platform as it readies itself for its expected imminent launch. However, the day before it posted the good news, FXMS’s chief operating officer Bryan Hunter suddenly left the firm. The reasons why are as yet unknown, but sources at the company say his departure came as a major surprise.

Hunter was one of FXMarketSpace’s management triumvirate, along with Rick Sears and Mark Robson. Like Sears, Hunter came over to the company from the CME, where he had been a director of its FX business. Prior to the CME, Hunter had worked in the cash market for several major institutions. One well-placed source described the Hunter and Sears combination as being like Jagger and Richards, which makes his sudden exit even more surprising.

So far I haven’t heard anything officially from FXMS about why he left. I managed to get in touch with Sears in Miami on Thursday, where he had flown for the day to attend a board meeting even though he was interrupting a family holiday in Austria.

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