Latest Commentary

Financial firms wrestle with fourth-party risk

In manufacturing, companies are traditionally worried about every component of their supply chain, assessing each component's performance level and susceptibility to failure. As spectacular cyber breaches and technical glitches make headlines, financial firms that have outsourced portions of their infrastructures as cost-saving measures are now looking at their supply chains with that same critical eye.

Firms boost legal reserves as FX investigations heat up

The Commodity Futures Trading Commission is expected to announce fines in the alleged rigging of the $5.3 trillion-a-day currency markets any day now, according to published reports. The CFTC may levy fines of around $300 million against each firm it is investigating, according to anonymous sources cited by Bloomberg.


Mobile payments take sides in burger wars

PayPal added sizzle to the mobile payments battles this week, announcing it has partnered with Burger King for mobile payments, just months after Apple Pay announced that it has a partnership with McDonald's.


Financial services execs increasingly look past Bitcoin to the potential of the blockchain

While Bitcoin has attracted an oversized amount of attention, both positive and negative, several executives at financial services firms are increasingly looking past Bitcoin to the blockchain technology that underpins it--and they see strong potential for financial services.

Wall Street says audits, crisis response plan needed to combat cybercrime

In the wake of this summer's cyberattack on JPMorgan, a Wall Street trade group representing hundreds of securities firms, banks and asset managers is speaking up on how the securities industry's cybersecurity should be managed. Detailed audits that are customized to individual firms' business models and an industry crisis response plan will be required to safeguard the industry, the Securities Industry Financial Markets Association said in an 11-page paper released last week.

JPMorgan will double cybersecurity spending but many other companies may cut costs

On the heels of news that the cyberbreach at JPMorgan Chase & Co may have affected as many as 76 million customers, chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon announced last week that the firm will double its $250 million annual computer security budget over the next five years.


August SEF data sends a mixed message

It has been more than half a year since the first made-available-to-trade deadlines in February signaled the real launch of swaps trading on Swaps Execution Facilities or SEFs, and the trends on SEF usage remain so erratic that it's hard to read the tea leaves.

Recovering from rate-fixing scandals, FX industry forms trade group

A wide cross-section of foreign exchange industry players has joined forces to form a currency markets trade group as the FX industry rehabs its image following rate fixing scandals. The group, called the Foreign Exchange Professionals Association, says it will use education, research and advocacy to advance "a sound, liquid, transparent and competitive global currency market."

As go-live date nears, China exchange link draws excitement and fear

Firms in Hong Kong and Shanghai have reportedly been working around the clock to be ready for the October go-live date of the link between the Hong Kong and Shanghai stock exchanges, but for many in the region the technology issues may be the least of it. Stock Connect, or the "Through Train," as some firms have reportedly dubbed the link, has the potential to open up the Shanghai stock market to much more western investment--or it may be poised to suck capital away from other exchanges in the region, depending on your perspective.

Bitcoin derivative trading to launch on TeraExchange

Six months after designing the structure of a swap for hedging the price of bitcoin, Tera Group announced it has won regulatory approval for trading bitcoins on its swaps execution facility TeraExchange. TeraExchange's new platform for trading bitcoin derivatives includes a newly-developed Tera Bitcoin Price Index and will trade U.S. dollar bitcoin non-deliverable forward swaps.