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Greenwich Associates names Barclays the 2012 leader in global foreign exchange

Monday 16 April 2012

Barclays tops the ranks of the global foreign exchange market in terms of market share. The top tier of global foreign exchange dealers includes six banks: Barclays, Deutsche Bank, Citi, UBS, HSBC, and J.P. Morgan. These banks comprise the 2012 Greenwich Share Leaders in Global Foreign Exchange.

Although individual members of this group — including Citi and HSBC — gained market share from 2010 to 2011, the results of Greenwich Associates 2012 Global Foreign Exchange Services Study reveal that these market leaders in aggregate lost market share to the broader field of FX competitors last year.

The reason: In an era of increasingly onerous capital reserve requirements that erode profit margins in many investment banking and capital markets businesses, FX trading is viewed as an attractive business and banks are making hefty investments to build out their platforms. Investments in foreign exchange franchises by banks not traditionally viewed as top-tier FX dealers have begun to affect the market’s competitive landscape — a trend that Greenwich Associates predicts will continue and even accelerate in the months and years to come.

“We expect this ‘flattening’ trend to continue as a large number of banks improve the capabilities and reach of their platforms,” says Greenwich Associates consultant Frank Feenstra. “With a growing number of committed banks competing against the market leaders for volume and market share, customers will reap the benefits of more intensive service, upgraded systems and better pricing.”


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