Gerry O'Kane
Gerry O'Kane

Regional e-FX perspective on the Middle East

Gerry O’Kane looks at growth in e-FX throughout the Middle Eastern markets and how resistance to electronic systems is changing rapidly in the fast shifting economic and socio political geography of the region.

Only five years ago there was an acceptance in most of the international banking community with operations in the Middle East, that resistance to electronic systems was fairly strong. Traditional ways of doing business in the region, based on relationships, had a strong pull. Today the consensus is that currency products are becoming increasingly interesting as a means to hedge risk and speculate, if only in a relatively limited way. Increased competition and demand from the buy-side has seen a previously reticent banking and broking sector gradually climb aboard the electronic bandwagon. “If customers are happy doing trades over the phone then the local banks aren’t bothered with electronic systems, however this is changing and many are now seeing use of the e-channel provide benefits like transparency and liquidity,” says Mark Warms, head of sales, for EMEA at FXall. “There is no doubt that in the Middle East FX Trading has been growing, maybe not at the same level of...continued

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