Foreign exchange: JPMorgan storms the top three in Asia

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Aside from Citi holding on to top spot, it’s all change in the 2017 Euromoney FX Survey rankings for Asia.


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How times change. Just five years ago, in the 2012 results of the Euromoney foreign exchange survey that market participants consider to be the benchmark for the global FX industry, traditional market leader Deutsche Bank had a clear lead in Asia, with a market share of more than 20%. Runner-up was Citi, with almost 15%; Barclays, HSBC and UBS rounded out the top five in that order.

The last five years have been tumultuous for the FX industry as a whole, with a series of scandals leading to a global code of conduct announced at the end of May this year.

That tumult is also evident in the 2017 rankings for Asia. 

Deutsche, the former leader, has plummeted. It now ranks a lowly seventh overall in Asia, with a market share of just 5.26%.


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Citi is now the top-ranked bank in Asian foreign exchange. Over that five-year period, it has actually increased its market share to 16.79% in 2017, despite the rigorous focus on returns over market share brought in by regional markets head Patrick Dewilde. The US bank has a clear lead of more than five percentage points over its nearest rival.


Its closest challenger is Bank of America Merrill Lynch, which climbs from third place last year, with a market share of 11.61%. 

BAML is the bank to watch in the overall Asian markets business; its regional FX franchise is running slightly ahead of the firm globally, which rose from fifth to fourth place overall on a market share of 6.73%. It’s worth noting that BAML was not even in the top 10 overall for Asia in the 2012 survey. 

JPMorgan came very close to unseating Citi in the overall global rankings this year, claiming second spot while increasing its market share by two percentage points. Citi’s share declined by a similar amount. 

JPMorgan’s market share in Asia is slightly ahead of its global percentage, at 10.62%, but it’s third place in the region represents a big jump from last year when it ranked only seventh.

The Asia rankings mirror a trend seen in the global results, as former global head of foreign exchange at Deutsche Bank Kevin Rodgers points out in the June edition of Euromoney: “If you plot market shares in 2017 against market capitalization, it is clear that overall big banks capture bigger shares.”

StanChart rises

The other big winner in this year’s Asian section of the Euromoney rankings is Standard Chartered. Under new leadership, the bank is clearly looking to build on the strong businesses that have survived a difficult period for the bank as a whole. FX is clearly one of these. 

In Asia, StanChart leaps back into the top 10 – from 13th place last year to a lofty fifth place in 2017 – with a market share of 6.42%.

For all the electronification of the FX industry over the past two decades, people still have an important role to play – and perhaps this explains the improvement in StanChart’s rankings. 

In a new section of the Euromoney survey, the bank ranks first overall for Asia for the quality of its salesforce. Citi, JPMorgan and BAML are also in the top five for this category. The outlier is HSBC, which ranks second for the quality of its Asian salesforce, but a lowly eighth overall for FX market share in Asia.

In Australasia, which is counted as a separate region in the Euromoney survey, JPMorgan’s ascent is marked. It climbs from fifth place to first overall with a market share of 11.82%. Citi slips from first place to fourth, separated by UBS in second and BAML in third. 

Euromoney received 2,395 valid responses globally in the 2017 foreign exchange survey, accounting for volume totalling $92.6 trillion in the calendar year 2016.

To view more results from the Euromoney 2017 foreign exchange survey, please visit euromoney.com/forex.