Icap market share grows

Interdealer broker Icap says its fourth-quarter trading has been solid and it has grown its market share over the year to the end of March.

The broker, which carries out transactions on behalf of big banks, said it would meet its financial targets and that high levels of market volatility caused by political and economic uncertainty in the Middle East and Japan in the past three months had helped its business.

And it said its new euro-denominated interest rate swaps platform was seeing monthly increases in activity and was processing more than €350bn in transaction volumes from more than 4,100 trades.

It plans to launch the platform denominated in US dollars this year, it added.

“Our quarterly performance benefited from the strength of our emerging markets businesses, continuing turbulence in the world's commodity markets, significant euro denominated bond issuance and rising concerns about higher inflation,” chief executive Michael Spencer said in its final trading update before its results on 18 May.

New EU financial markets regulation expected out in the second half of this year to push more trading onto transparent electronic exchanges and alternative trading platforms is a good thing for Icap, it said, and it expects to be “a substantial beneficiary” of the new rules.

“We enter the new financial year with confidence that we are well prepared for changes in financial market infrastructure,” Spencer said.