Russell Investments Group is trying to lure currency investors away from banks to an electronic network that lets institutions trade directly with each other.
The firm’s platform, known as the RFX Network, allows investors to sidestep banks that were fined billions of dollars last year for rigging currency rates. The company’s trading desk completed its first transaction that matched currency orders at 4 p.m. London time, when a daily benchmark is set, Russell said in an Aug. 6 statement.
“The RFX Network allows buy-side investors to trade in a protected environment where they don’t need to be concerned about the intentions of profit-motivated traders,” Michael DuCharme, Russell’s head of currency strategy in Seattle, said in an e-mail.
Russell, which manages $272 billion in assets, said it will assume a fiduciary responsibility for orders placed on the platform, requiring the company to act in the interest of clients. Russell buys and sells currencies for its own funds and other institutions.
Bloomberg LP, the parent of Bloomberg News, competes with currency-trading systems in providing information and pricing data. Bloomberg offers its own benchmark currency rate fixings.