--Average daily spot currency trading volumes at EBS slump 23% in January
--Central bank intervention kept some of EBS's strongest currencies range-bound
By Jessica Mead
Reduced volatility in key currencies like the yen and the Swiss franc hit currency trading volumes at ICAP PLC's (>> ICAP plc) interbank FX platform EBS in January, the company said Friday.
Average daily spot currency volumes handled by EBS slumped 23% to $116 billion compared with $151.5 billion a year earlier. That marks EBS's worst January performance since at least 2006.
It said the slump in volumes was "partly due to certain of EBS's strongest currencies being relatively range-bound."
Central bank intervention--or the threat of it--has reduced trading activity and volatility in both the Swiss franc and the yen, two of EBS's strongest currencies.
Early in January, RBC Capital Markets said that the weekly trading range in the yen was just 37 points, its tightest in more than 20 years. Activity in the Swiss franc has been dampened by the Swiss National Bank's promise to curb any appreciation in its currency.
The poor January performance at EBS follows an equally lackluster December, when volumes fell 15% on a year earlier.
ICAP's EBS is a main interbank trading systems in foreign exchange. Its rival, Thomson Reuters Corp. (TRI), has yet to report its trading figures for last month.
- By Jessica Mead, Dow Jones Newswires; 44 20 7842 9256; email@example.com
Stocks mentioned in the article : ICAP plc