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FX: BNY Mellon diving into prime brokerage as other banks retreat

The prime brokerage market will be hoping for a boost from the imminent launch of BNY Mellon’s new service, which will represent a reversal of the trend for larger banks to leave the space.

In January, BNY Mellon confirmed that it was to introduce a prime brokerage service for its institutional clients. The technology is now in production and the bank is working with a number of pilot clients to ensure the service is ready when they are prepared to commence trading.

Michael Cooper, the bank’s head of FX prime brokerage, says it has chosen to enter the market at this time in response to client demand for access to the FX market. “The ability to net down collateral obligations and post-trade services with a single provider, while maintaining the flexibility of multiple bilateral trading relationships is a key requirement for many of our clients,” he adds.

The major banks have been redefining their priorities for some time, driven by regulatory reforms and particularly the capital obligations of the Basel III framework. In such an environment, the entry of a new player with an approach that is more sensitive to the market environment could have a disproportionately large impact, according to Gavin White, CEO of Sydney-based multi-asset brokerage and prime services provider Invast Global.

Gavin White, Invast Global 

“It remains to be seen whether BNY Mellon will bring a new approach, but as the growth of boutique non-bank prime services firms proves, there is strong demand for more flexible multi-asset prime services which are priced at a point where small and medium-sized firms can access them economically,” he says.

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