Thomson Reuters Bucks Industry Trend, Suffering Declining FX Volumes in May

FX ADV was on the decline, falling off a peak last month despite highly dynamic FX markets during May.

Thomson Reuters (NYSE:TRI), one of the leading foreign exchange (FX) electronic communications networks (ECNs), has reported its monthly trading statistics and volumes for May 2017. The month was characterized by a number of influential factors across global markets, including in both the US and Europe, that helped spark volatility.

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Relative to a rather uneventful April, May 2017 proved to yield a far more dynamic market for FX. In the United States a combination of factors ranging from the abrupt firing of FBI Director James Comey to other self-imposed Trump scandals helped spur markets. In Europe, the French election was a heavily traded event, with both sides of the Atlantic seeing no shortage of market drivers.

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In particular, Thomson Reuters’s average daily volume (ADV) of its FX products, including spot, forwards, swaps options and non-deliverable forwards (NDF), came in at $350.0 billion during May 2017. Despite the plethora of market drivers in May, this figure was actually lower by -6.4 percent month-over-month from $374.0 billion in April 2017 – its lowest monthly figure since February 2017.

The latest performance bucks an industry trend, which saw most ECNs and trading venues secure growing volumes in May. Moreover, while April 2017 proved to be a yearly low for most groups, Thomson Reuters’ volumes were inverted, actually recording a peak volume last month. Of note, there were 22 total trading days in May 2017, relative to only 19 in April.

On a year-over year basis, Thomson Reuters ADV of its comprehensive FX volumes were also pointed lower, failing to achieve the $362.0 billion set back in May 2016 – this was a decline of 3.3 percent year-over-year. Looking closer at the latest batch of data at Thomson Reuters, May 2017’s total of $350.0 billion of ADV was disaggregated to $85.0 billion ($87.0 billion in April 2017) in terms of FX spot volume, with $265.0 billion for other products ($287.0 billion in April 2017).

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