BIS survey: Daily forex trade at a high of $4 trillion

London: Daily currency trading has grown 20 per cent over the past three years, to an average of $4 trillion a day in April 2010, says the latest triennial survey from the Bank for International Settlements (BIS). The survey also points out that big international banks have lost their preeminent position in determining volumes in the currency trading market for the first time since 2007 and now trail hedge funds and other financial institutions.

The report, from the Basel, Switzerland-based global central bank, also confirms that London has displaced New York as the world's preeminent foreign-exchange hub, with UK-based banks increasing their share of the market to 36.7 per cent from 34.6 per cent in 2007.

New York had an 18 per cent share, followed by Japan, Singapore, Switzerland, Hong Kong and Australia.

According to the survey, over these three years some big Asian markets have begun posting big volumes in currency trade along with peripheral markets, like Brazil and Turkey. Asia-Pacific currencies, the report says, have accounted for 35.9 per cent of average daily foreign-exchange trading, which is up from 33 per cent in 2007. This marks the first increase since the 2001survey and is also the most since BIS started compiling the surveys in 1998.

The Central Bank Survey of Foreign Exchange and Derivatives Market Activity report is based on data from 53 institutions.

Formed in 1930, the BIS acts as a central bank for the world's central bankers.