January 20 2016


CFTC appoints CEO of (pending regulation) BTC/Blockchain exchange to their Technology Committee as we see a raft of broker results, a new Chairman of ITG and a spat about NSE’s restructuring. Happy scrolling:

Public Markets

IBKR 2015 Results


vs 2014: Net revenues $1.189 bln, up 14%, income before income taxes $458 mln, down 9.5%, net income $415 mln, down 9.5%.

PLY: Even IBKR suffered some losses as the Swiss Franc unpegged.


Charles Schwab Q4 2015 Results

Charles Schwab

vs Q4 2014: net revenues $1.69 bln, up 9%, net income $416 mln, up 19%.

PLY: Selling flow remains profitable.


IG Group H1 2016 Results

IG Group

H1 of the financial year ending 31 May 2016.

Profit before tax down 2.8% to £98.6 mln ($140 mln).


EEX To Buy Two-Thirds Stake In Prague Energy Exchange

Michael Kahn – Reuters

European Energy Exchange (EEX) will take a two-thirds stake in Prague’s Power Exchange Central Europe (PXE), giving the EEX access to developing central and southeastern Europe. The agreement is expected to be signed on Wednesday and close by the end of Q1 2016.

PXE will continue to operate as a separate entity but gain access to EEX’s products and expertise.


PSE-PDS Merger: Engagement On The Rocks

Doris Dumlao-Abadilla – Philippine Daily Inquirer

QV Premium: PSE – PDEx Merger Brief.


ITG Names Cheng as Chairman Amid Cleanup From Dark-Pool Fine

Annie Massa – Bloomberg

ITG named Minder Cheng as Chairman, the latest management change at a brokerage seeking to move past last year’s fine for alleged misdeeds at its dark pool.

Cheng, who once worked at BlackRock and Barclays Global Investors, has been on ITG’s board since 2010. His new role as chairman was announced in a Tuesday statement that also said Frank Troise, a former JPMorgan Chase executive, joined as CEO on Jan. 15.

PLY: The Justin Hughes Phillyfin inspired cleansing of management appears to be reaching its conclusion with a new Chairman on top of the CEO replacement and some new board members.

Cheng replaces Cornell professor Maureen O’Hara, who stepped down on January 15th. after 12 years on the board, of which 8 were as Chairman. Chris Dodds also ended his tenure as board member at the end of December after a term stretching back to 2008. Frank Troise replaced Jarrett Lilien, ITG’s interim CEO and member of the board since April 2015 after Bob Gasser was deposed, in August 2015.


BGC Partners Announces Reduced Interest Rate on GFI Group’s 8.375% Senior Notes due 2018


PLY: Post GFI takeover concerns about credit ratings have been assuaged…


ESMA Publishes Letter From European Commission On AIFMD Passport


EU Further Delays Vetting Of Hedge Fund Rules Outside The Bloc

Huw Jones – Reuters

A large chunk of the world’s hedge fund sector faces further uncertainty after the EU extended a deadline for deciding if non-EU firms can continue marketing themselves in the 28-country bloc. A new EU law requires ESMA to say for the first time if hedge fund and private equity rules in non-EU countries are as strict as those in the 28-country bloc.

PLY: Another protectionist impediment which demonstrates the willful damage being inflicted upon financial markets by a narrow-minded EU which continues, as the old Irish adage goes “to cut off its nose to spite its face.”


NZX Joins Intermarket Surveillance Group



Saxo Enters Robo-Advisory Fray With BlackRock Partnership (subscription)

Anna Irrera – Financial News

Private Markets

Investors Oppose National SE’s Business Rejig Plans


Under the proposed rejig, NSE plans to create a separate entity for non-regulated business.

PLY: NSE’s most free market investors, making up 19.62%: of the equity holding (Tiger Global,SAIF Partners, Norwest Venture Partners, Aranda Investments, Beacon India Private Equity Fund, DVI Fund, GTI Capital Epsilon, NewQuest Asia Investment and WCP Holdings) are unhappy at a move they see as potentially damaging shareholder value and delaying a listing. As we race to pixel, I struggle to see the logic myself.


Liquidator Offers 1.9% Of BSE Shares Formerly Belonging To Failed Brokerages

Budapest Business Journal

A combined 1.9% stake in the Budapest SE (BSE) owned by three independent brokerages that went bust last year are being put up for sale by liquidator PSFN.


IBEX Begins Trading


Bulgaria’s day-ahead power exchange began trading on Tuesday as the Balkan country pushes ahead with plans to fully liberalise its energy market and make it more transparent. IBEX plans to introduce an intraday market and may also team up with another power exchange in southeastern Europe. Serbia and Croatia are also due to launch day-ahead power exchanges this year.


Kraken Acquires Coinsetter & Cavirtex

Mike Fox – LeapRate

Kraken is acquiring major exchanges Coinsetter and Cavirtex. NYC-based Coinsetter, founded in 2012, while Cavirtex, founded in 2011, is Canada’s first bitcoin exchange. Already the world’s largest bitcoin exchange in euro volume and liquidity, Kraken will fully absorb both Coinsetter and Cavirtex brands in the acquisition. Client accounts of both exchanges will be automatically transferred to Kraken’s platform on January 26, 2016.

Dividend News

IBKR quarterly cash dividend of $0.10, payable on March 14, 2016, record date March 1, 2016.

IG Group interim dividend of 8.45p, in line with dividend policy.

Special Section: FTI, NSEL, India at the Crossroads

PLY: MCX off 3%, FTIL down 6%.


CFTC Appoints Bitcoin Expert, First 2016 Meeting Will Have Blockchain Focus

Kyle Torpey – Bitcoin Magazine

To gain a better understanding of Bitcoin, the blockchain and other distributed ledger technologies, the CFTC is adding an experienced bitcoin trading expert, LedgerX CEO Paul L. Chou , to their committee of technology advisers. The independent agency of the U.S. government will also take time to focus on these new technologies in their first meeting of 2016.

PLY: Good move by CFTC to add a Blockchain expert as LedgerX awaits its regulation from the CFTC (its directors includes ex-Chairman Jim Newsome while former Commissioner Mark Wetjen also joined in September 2015 but doesn’t seem to be on the web site as we race to pixel…).


CME – Launches Six New WTI Houston (Argus) Crude Oil Futures Contracts



MCX – Fully Prepared For Options, Index Futures

Rajesh Bhayani – Business Standard

MCX has set its sights on options and futures using the expertise of the CME, which has shown interest in setting up a clearing corporation.

Interview with Parveen Kumar Singhal, joint MD and caretaker CEO of MCX.


Eurex Adds Incentives To Boost Swap Clearing (subscription)

Alice Attwood – FOW


KCG Plans Exit From Retail Options Market Making

Annie Massa – Bloomberg

KCG plans to exit a business that handles options trades from retail brokerages by the end of February.

FAO: Recently KCG was replaced by JPMorgan with Virtu Financial as the bank’s NYSE market maker.


Treasury, Other Regulators Move to Speed Collection of Bond-Trading Data (subscription)

Ryan Tracy & Katy Burne – Wall Street Journal

The U.S. government is moving toward faster collection of data for the $12.8 trillion U.S. Treasury market.


CLTX Launches New Trade Intelligence Service


Career Paths

ITG appointed Minder Cheng as Chairman of its BoD and Frank Troise as CEO, President and member of the BoD, effective January 15, 2016.

HKEx welcomed Cheng Siu Hong, Raymond, the new Chairman of the Hong Kong Interbank Clearing Limited (HKICL), to its Risk Management Committee (statutory) (RMC).  His appointment was in accordance with the Securities and Futures Ordinance.  Mr Cheng replaced May Tan, the former chairman of HKICL.

From 20 January 2016, RMC members comprise:

CHOW Chung Kong (Chairman)

CHAN Tze Ching, Ignatius

CHENG Siu Hong, Raymond

LAM Yuk Kun, Lawrence

LEE Tat Chi, Howard

LEUNG KO May Yee, Margaret

LUI Kei Kwong, Keith

SHIU Barbara

Bitcoin Magazine reports that CFTC is adding an experienced bitcoin trading expert, LedgerX CEO Paul L. Chou, to their committee of technology advisers.

Commodities broker Marex Spectron’s CEO John Wall has retired and been replaced by the current CFO Ian Lowitt who will move to London from New York. Rob Watts, current group financial controller, becomes the new CFO.

Marex Spectron also reports the following board changes:

Non-Executive Chairman Jeremy Isaacs will step down and be succeeded by current NED and former LME CEO, Simon Heale. Isaacs will remain on the board.

PLY: Good to hear some news about Simon Heale.

In addition, NED Peter Sugarman is stepping down to be replaced by Joanna Nader.

Simon van den Born, Marex Spectron’s global head of metals, also is joining the board.

Isaacs, Sugarman and Nader are all officers of JRJ Group; JRJ and its partners, Trilantic Capital Partners and BXR Group, are the majority shareholders of Marex Spectron.

Financial Calendar

20.01 – SGX Q2 Results for Financial Year 2016

New! 24.02 – NZX Preliminary 2015 Full Year Results

New! 11.02 – TMX Q4 2015 Results (press release)

All forthcoming exchange / investment related events are now listed in our Events page.

Other stories

Yes Bank – LSE MOU To Focus On Green Initiatives



FESE IPO Database + European Equity Market Report – Year 2015


PLY: Good source of data as always from the fine folks of FESE.


European CCPs Start Publishing Quantitative Data In Line With CPMI-IOSCO’s Public Quantitative Disclosure Standards


PLY: A second useful source of data to round out the day’s Exchange Invest Daily..


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