World's Best Foreign Exchange Banks 2005

Article excerpt

Global Finance selects the leaders in the world's biggest financial market.

The recent slide in the value of the dollar has focused the eyes of the world on the foreign exchange markets, where the volume of trading has exploded to around $1.9 trillion a day. In April 2004, when 52 central banks and monetary authorities worldwide collected data on turnover, as they do every three years, they found that daily global turnover was up 57% at current exchange rates and 36% at constant exchange rates from April 2001.

The triennial survey also confirmed that the UK remains the center of the foreign exchange world, with a market share of 31.3%, followed by the US with a 19.2% share, and Japan with 8.3%. Daily volume in the US soared 82% since 2001, slightly narrowing Britain's lead. Daily turnover for US derivatives markets, such as forward-rate agreements, interest-rate swaps and foreign exchange options, surged by 164%.

It is clear that increased activity by hedge funds, the fast growth of online foreign exchange trading systems and growing international trade and crossborder investing are contributing to a major increase in currency-trading volume. This has occurred despite a continuing consolidation among dealers.

Global Finance has selected the leading foreign exchange banks in 70 countries and regions, as well as the best online foreign exchange trading systems and the best bank for foreign exchange research.

With input from industry analysts, corporate executives and technology experts, Global Finance editors selected the winners based on objective and subjective factors. Criteria included transaction volume, market share, scope of global coverage, customer service, competitive pricing and innovative technologies.

REGIONAL WINNERS

NORTH AMERICA Citigroup

LATIN AMERICA Citigroup

WESTERN EUROPE Deutsche Bank

(Honorable Mention: BNP Paribas and UBS)

CENTRAL & EASTERN EUROPE Bank Austria Creditanstalt

SCANDINAVIA Nordea

MIDDLE EAST National Bank of Kuwait

AFRICA Standard Bank

ASIA/PACIFIC HSBC

SOUTHEAST ASIA DBS

BEST FOREIGN EXCHANGE RESEARCH

Bank of New York

BEST ONLINE FOREIGN EXCHANGE TRADING SYSTEMS

Best Bank System: UBS

(Honorable Mention: State Street's FX Connect)

Best Independent: FXaIl (Honorable Mention: Currenex)

COUNTRY WINNERS

ARGENTINA Citigroup

ARMENIA HSBC Bank Armenia

AUSTRALIA ANZ

AUSTRIA Bank Austria Creditanstalt

BAHRAIN Arab Banking Corporation

BELARUS Priorbank

BELGIUM Fortis Bank

BRAZIL Banco Bradesco

CANADA Scotia Capital

CHILE Banco de Chile

CHINA Bank of China

COLOMBIA Bancolombia

COSTA RICA Banco Interim

CZECH REPUBLIC Ceskoslovenska Obchodni Banka

DENMARK Danske Bank

EGYPT Commercial International Bank

ESTONIA Hansabank

FRANCE BNP Paribas

GEORGIA TBC Bank

GERMANY Deutsche Bank

GREECE National Bank of Greece

HONG KONG HSBC

HUNGARY OTP Bank

INDIA ICICI Bank

ISRAEL Bank Hapoalim

ITALY Banca Intesa

JAPAN Mitsubishi Tokyo Financial Group

KAZAKHSTAN Kazkommertsbank

KUWAIT National Bank of Kuwait

LATVIA Parex Bank

LITHUANIA Vilniaus Bankas

MALAYSIA Maybank

MEXICO Banamex

MOLDOVA Victoriabank

NETHERLANDS ABN AMRO Bank

NEWZEALANDANZ

NIGERIA First Bank of Nigeria

NORWAY DnB NOR

OMAN BankMuscat

PAKISTAN National Bank of Pakistan

POLAND Bank Handlowy

PORTUGAL Millennium bcp

QATAR Qatar National Bank

RUSSIA International Moscow Bank

SAUDI ARABIA Arab National Bank

SINGAPORE DBS

SLOVAK REPUBLIC Tatra Banka

SLOVENIA Nova Ljubljanska Banka

SOUTH AFRICA Standard Bank

SOUTH KOREA Korea Exchange Bank

SPAIN Banco Santander Central Hispano

SWEDEN Nordea

SWITZERLAND UBS

TAIWAN Chinatrust Commercial Bank

THAILAND Bangkok Bank

TURKEY Akbank

UAE National Bank of Dubai

UKRAINE Privatbank

UNITED KINGDOM Royal Bank of Scotland

UNITED STATES Citigroup

(Honorable Mention: JPMorgan Chase and Bank of New York)

VENEZUELA Banco Mercantil

REGIONAL WINNERS

NORTH AMERICA

CITIGROUP

Citigroup's foreign exchange franchise, CitiFX, works closely with corporate clients to review their currency exposure and advise on and execute hedges and other strategies. …