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LMAX Exchange CEO comments on the FEMR report

david-mercer-thumbnailLondon, 11 June 2015 - Commenting on the Fair and Effective Markets Review Final Report published yesterday, David Mercer, CEO of LMAX Exchange, said, “As the leading FCA regulated MTF for spot FX operating a ‘no last look’ open order book, we fully welcome the review’s endeavour to bring increased transparency to the FX market. We will fully support and cooperate with the new market standards committee to help drive the effort in increasing fairness and transparency in FX markets globally.”

Section 2.4.1 of the report discusses enhanced transparency around ‘time stamping’ and ‘last look’ practices in FX Markets.

On the need to standardise the application of ‘time stamps’ to show precise execution time, Mercer commented: “We believe that ‘time stamps’ need to be universal and consistent globally. At LMAX Exchange, we time stamp every order (from receipt to execution and acknowledgement) in milliseconds and believe that this should be the industry standard.

“On the use of ‘last look’, we have a long held view that this practice is no longer required given the advances in trading technology.”

He added: “The answer is clear: to avoid the potential for abuse of ‘last look’, it is best not to have it at all. Technological advancement has entirely eliminated the need for ‘last look’ and a world without it would reinstate much-needed transparency and trust in FX markets, as people will know that they are being presented with the true cost of execution.

“25 of the leading global banks and all major non-bank market makers are already operating on LMAX Exchange’s ‘no last look’ open order book architecture, demonstrating that all participants can co-exist within the same exchange model that is the cornerstone of liquidity for every other asset class.

“This is the benchmark for global FX trading, and whilst we are encouraged that Mr Carney is taking the helm and steering the industry in this direction, we think questioning the acceptability of ‘last look’ is a foregone conclusion – the only “clear standard” that needs to be set is that it should not exist.

“Across the industry there is still not enough understanding about the practice of ‘last look’. A worryingly high number of customers we were speaking to six months ago had never heard of ‘last look’, despite being quoted this way for the last decade. The regulators need to not only draw attention to the practice, but go all the way and accept that it is not needed, under any circumstances. The regulators need to look beyond the established spot FX venues, they need to understand how the new venues operate and see that we have already solved the problem.”

Mercer concluded, “We urge the FEMR to more actively engage with all participants in the market, whether big or small, old or new. As an MTF already practicing ‘no last look’ as standard, we are fully committed and willing to be an industry example of good practice in this respect.”

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Media Contacts

For further information please contact:

LMAX Exchange (London):
Barbara Pozdorovkina T: +44 20 3192 2510 E:

About LMAX Exchange

Recognised as one of the UK’s fastest growing technology firms, LMAX Exchange is the leading MTF for FX, authorised and regulated by the FCA. Servicing funds, banks, brokerages and asset managers, LMAX Exchange delivers firm liquidity, anonymous exchange quality execution and a secure, transparent level playing field to all market participants, regardless of status, size or activity levels.

The LMAX Exchange open order book is driven by no ‘last look’ limit-order liquidity from top tier banks and non-bank financial institutions. Orders are executed in price/time priority with real time streaming continuous market and trade data published to all members. Offering a comprehensive range of instruments including spot FX, precious metals, commodities and equity indices, LMAX Exchange operates a global FX exchange infrastructure with matching engines in London, New York and Tokyo.

LMAX Exchange - a unique vision for global FX.

Financial technology awards:

2017 Best FX Trading Venue - (ECN/MTF) – Fund Technology and WSL Awards more

LMAX Exchange has been awarded The Fund Technology and WSL Awards “Best FX Trading Venue - ECN/MTF”. The award honours excellence among providers to the institutional trading industry. close

2016 Best Trading & Execution – HFM US Technology Awards more

The HFM US Technology awards recognise hedge fund technology providers that have demonstrated exceptional customer service and innovative product development in the past 12 months. close

2013 Best Overall Testing Project – The European Software Testing Awards more

The European Software Testing Awards (TESTA) recognise excellence and innovation in the software testing and quality assurance across a variety of industries. close

2011 Best Trading System – Financial Sector Technology Awards more

The FST Awards recognise excellence and innovation in the field of information technology within the UK and EMEA financial services sector. close

2011 Innovative Programming Framework – Oracle Duke's Choice Awards more

Oracle’s Duke's Choice Awards celebrate extreme innovation in the world of Java technology and are granted to the most innovative projects using the Java platform. close

FX industry awards:

2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013 Best Margin Sector Platform – Profit & Loss Readers' Choice Awards more

LMAX Exchange has been awarded The Profit & Loss Readers’ Choice Awards “Best Margin Sector Platform” for five consecutive years. These awards are voted on by the readers and recognise excellence within the foreign exchange industry throughout the previous year. close

2016, 2015, 2014, 2013 Best FX Trading Venue - (ECN/MTF) – WSL Awards more

LMAX Exchange has been awarded The WSL Awards “Best FX Trading Venue - ECN/MTF” for four consecutive years. The awards honour excellence among providers to the institutional trading industry. close

2014 Best Infrastructure/Technology Initiative – WSL Institutional Trading Awards more

LMAX Exchange has been awarded The Wall Street Letter Institutional Trading Awards “Best Infrastructure/Technology Initiative” in 2014. WSL awards honour excellence among providers to the institutional trading industry. close

2013 Best Execution Venue – Forex Magnates Awards more

LMAX Exchange has been awarded the Forex Magnates Awards “Best Execution Venue”. The awards are granted to the top firms in their categories and announced at the annual London summit. close

Business growth awards:

2016, 2015 Winner – Deloitte UK Technology Fast 50 more

Deloitte UK Technology Fast 50 is a ranking of the 50 fastest-growing technology companies in the UK, based on percentage growth of fiscal year revenues over the last four years. close

2015, 2014, 2013 Fastest Growing Tech Company in the UK – The Sunday Times Tech Track 100 more

LMAX Exchange has been recognised amongst the UK’s fastest growing technology firms for three consecutive years. Tech Track 100, compiled by Fast Track annually and published by the Sunday Times each September, lists Britain’s 100 fastest-growing private tech companies based on sales growth over the last three years. close

2016, 2015 Winner – Deloitte EMEA Technology Fast 500 more

The Deloitte EMEA Technology Fast 500 pre-eminent technology awards program is a ranking of Europe, the Middle East, and Africa's fastest-growing technology companies based on percentage revenue growth over three years. close

2015 Recognised as a Tech City Future Fifty company – Tech City UK Future Fiftymore

LMAX Exchange is part of the Future Fifty programme, focused on accelerating the success of high-growth tech businesses. close

LMAX Limited operates a multilateral trading facility (MTF). Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, FCA Registered no. 509778.