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BIS Survey Shows Rapid Growth In Hong Kong's RMB Market


The Hong Kong Monetary Authority has welcomed Hong Kong's results within the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) triennial survey on foreign exchange and derivatives market turnover, which was released on September 5.

The Hong Kong survey results showed that the average daily turnover of foreign exchange transactions and over-the-counter (OTC) interest rate derivatives increased by 18.2 percent to USD302.5bn in April 2013, as compared with USD256.0bn in the previous survey conducted in April 2010.

Hong Kong, over the period between the two surveys, advanced one place and is now ranked fifth in the global foreign exchange market. If transactions in the over-the-counter (OTC) interest rate derivatives market are included, Hong Kong's ranking moved up from seventh in 2010 to sixth in 2013.

The average daily turnover of foreign exchange transactions in Hong Kong rose by 15.6 percent, to USD274.6bn, as compared with the 2010 survey. Within that turnover, trading between the USD and RMB rose 3.6 times to account for 17.7 percent of total average daily turnover, up from 4.5 percent in 2010, and surpassing the HKD against USD (at 17.2 percent) as the most heavily traded currency pair in the local market, and followed by USD against JPY that has a 16.6 percent share.

Foreign exchange trades involving offshore RMB were around 63 percent of all RMB trades, "reflecting the sound development of Hong Kong as an offshore RMB center ... (and) the significantly increased use of RMB in trade and investment activities."

In addition, the average daily turnover of OTC interest rate derivatives in Hong Kong rose strongly by 51.1 percent to USD27.9bn as compared with the 2010 survey, driven by a growth in interest rate swaps, which increased by 49.7 percent. Compared to 2010, HKD-denominated contracts fell by 44.6 percent in 2013, mainly due to the lower volume of hedging activities involving the currency.

The BIS survey was also noteworthy in that it confirmed Singapore's ranking as the third largest foreign exchange center globally, after London and New York, and the largest in Asia. The average daily foreign exchange turnover volume in Singapore grew 44 percent to USD383bn in April 2013 compared with USD266bn in April 2010.


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