The Moscow Exchange (MICEX) has recently announced that it is extending trading hours for FX products. Beginning January 8th 2013, trading will conclude at 23:50 MSK which extends the current 19:00 close for trading. According to the MICEX, the change is based on normalizing FX trading to the conditions of the rest of the world where the product is traded 24 hours a day. The trading hours extension occurs after the MICEX had earlier made changes to its minimum tick size which it claimed were part of catering to demand from traders. Unlike most trading venues, the MICEX has experienced record trading for 2012 due to an increase in foreign participants at the exchange. As such, with demand rising, the MICEX is quickly morphing its products and trading conditions to match those of the rest of the world. Also, after implementing the changes, trading hours for FX products will begin to match those of the MICEX’s derivatives FORTS division which should help boost cross asset trading at the exchange.
Commenting on the news, Igor Suzdaltsev Deputy CEO at Kalita Finance stated “ I think this is a positive step from MICEX. The Russian ruble becomes a more civilized currency from a trader’s point of view.” Nonetheless, for CFD providers using the MICEX’s data to provide pricing for their RUB products, the change in trading hours may be slow to take effect. An FX dealer contacted by Forex Magnates but unauthorized to speak mentioned that the broker wouldn’t change its RUB hours until it has time to analyze spreads and pricing during the extended period to determine that there is adequate liquidity. (Many brokers limit trading hours for currencies that are deemed exotic such as the TRY, RON, and RUB, to local market opening times to ensure fewer price spikes and tighter spreads)
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