Daily currency volumes fall to $4.6 trillion a day as Brexit vote looms

Thu Jun 16, 2016 11:50am EDT
 
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LONDON, June 16 (Reuters) - Average daily volumes in the global currency market fell 7 percent in May from a month earlier, with traders citing uncertainty before Britain's vote on whether to stay in the European Union as one of the main factors for the drop.

Daily volumes have already been hurt in recent months by regulatory changes that have crimped banks' risk-taking ability, and by lower global trade flows.

Data on Thursday from settlement company CLS showed that volumes fell to $4.61 trillion a day in May, down from $4.96 trillion a day in April but the same as in May last year.

The number of instructions daily fell nearly 10 percent to 969,061 from 1,073,203 in April, CLS added. Earlier in the month, data from the biggest currency trading platforms run by Thomson Reuters and ICAP showed volumes continued to fall in May, extending the trend seen in recent months.

Spot currency trading volume on TR platforms, the leader in Commonwealth currencies like sterling and the Australian and New Zealand dollars , totalled $94 billion in May. That was down from $97 billion in April and nearly 15 percent lower from $110 billion in May 2015.

On electronic platform EBS, where the bulk of the trades in dollars, yen and euros are carried out, volumes are down 21 percent in May from a year ago, owner ICAP said. (Reporting by Anirban Nag; Editing by Catherine Evans)