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Information Flows in Dark Markets: Dissecting Customer Currency Trades

  • Lukas Mankhoff
  • Lucio Sarno
  • Maik Schmeling
  • Andreas Schrimpf

We study the information in order flows of different customer segments in the world's largest over-the-counter market, the foreign exchange market. The analysis draws on a unique dataset covering a broad cross-section of currency pairs and distinguishing trades by key types of foreign exchange end-users. We find that order flows are highly informative about future exchange rates and provide significant economic value for the few large dealers who have access to these flows. Moreover, customer groups systematically engage in risk sharing with each other and differ markedly in their predictive ability, trading styles, and risk exposure.

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Paper provided by Bank for International Settlements in its series BIS Working Papers with number 405.

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Length: 74 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bis:biswps:405
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  1. Menkhoff, Lukas & Schmeling, Maik, 2007. "Whose trades convey information? Evidence from a cross-section of traders," Hannover Economic Papers (HEP) dp-357, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät.
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  12. Markus K. Brunnermeier & Stefan Nagel & Lasse H. Pedersen, 2009. "Carry Trades and Currency Crashes," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2008, Volume 23, pages 313-347 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Harald Hau & Helene Rey, 2004. "Can Portfolio Rebalancing Explain the Dynamics of Equity Returns, Equity Flows, and Exchange Rates?," NBER Working Papers 10476, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  15. Payne, Richard, 2003. "Informed trade in spot foreign exchange markets: an empirical investigation," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(2), pages 307-329, December.
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  17. Lyons, Richard K., 1997. "A simultaneous trade model of the foreign exchange hot potato," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-4), pages 275-298, May.
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  24. Goyal, Amit & Saretto, Alessio, 2009. "Cross-section of option returns and volatility," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(2), pages 310-326, November.
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  27. Michael Sager & Mark P. Taylor, 2008. "Commercially Available Order Flow Data and Exchange Rate Movements: "Caveat Emptor"," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 40(4), pages 583-625, 06.
  28. Menzie D. Chinn & Michael J. Moore, 2011. "Order Flow and the Monetary Model of Exchange Rates: Evidence from a Novel Data Set," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 43(8), pages 1599-1624, December.
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