Russia Curbs HFT & Improves Order Book Quality in FX with New 25 RUB Commission

Russia’s financial trading exchange has introduced a new charging structure for its FX contracts. The move comes as the exchange

micex logoWith the Russian rouble progressing as a popular emerging market trading currency (EMFX), the country’s main equities, bonds and derivatives exchange has issued a notification with new charges on the listed currency contract.

From the 20th of January 2014, traders will be charged RUB25 for orders below 50 lots. The new levy was approved by the FX Market Committee and Moscow Exchange’s Executive Board and Supervisory Board.

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The notification issued by the exchange states that the main purpose is to improve order book quality, however with a growing number of High Frequency Traders (HFT) looking to exploit new opportunities in the liquid EMFX pair, the exchange may be putting out its defensive code of conduct.

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Russia has been pushing hard to position itself as global financial hub, with better than expected GDP growth, a large share of the world’s oil and gas supplies, not to forget its metals stockpile, the BRICS nation is stepping closer to its reality.

In the financial space the same applies, the merger between MICEX and RTS has created a behemoth of a venue, in addition, the recent enhancements in the London – Moscow data route mean that Moscow is wide open for HFT business. However, the latest ‘charge’ comes as a surprise as it gives mixed signals to the eager High Frequency traders ready to press play on their black boxes.

Trading volumes in rouble FX derivatives have been increasing in 2013 from a year earlier, average daily trading volume in FX derivatives was $17 billion across all rouble contracts in November, the bulk of the trading reported by the exchange is in FX swaps.

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