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Financial intermediation and the role of price discrimination in a two-tier market

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  • Reitz, Stefan
  • Schmidt, Markus A.
  • Taylor, Mark P.

Abstract

Though unambiguously outperforming all other financial markets in terms of liquidity, foreign exchange trading is still performed in opaque and decentralized markets. In particular, the two-tier market structure consisting of a customer segment and an interdealer segment to which only market makers have access gives rise to the possibility of price discrimination. We provide a theoretical foreign exchange pricing model that accounts for market power considerations and analyze a database of the trades of a German market maker and his cross section of end-user customers. We find that the market maker generally exerts low bargaining power vis-á-vis his customers. The dealer earns lower average spreads on trades with financial customers than commercial customers, even though the former are perceived to convey exchange-rate-relevant information. From this perspective, it appears that market makers provide interdealer market liquidity to end-user customers with cross-sectionally differing spreads.

Suggested Citation

  • Reitz, Stefan & Schmidt, Markus A. & Taylor, Mark P., 2009. "Financial intermediation and the role of price discrimination in a two-tier market," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2009,13, Deutsche Bundesbank.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:bubdp1:7582
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    Cited by:

    1. Osler, Carol L. & Mende, Alexander & Menkhoff, Lukas, 2011. "Price discovery in currency markets," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(8), pages 1696-1718.
    2. Stefan Reitz & Markus Schmidt & Mark Taylor, 2011. "End-user order flow and exchange rate dynamics - a dealer's perspective," The European Journal of Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(2), pages 153-168.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    foreign exchange; market microstructure; pricing behavior;

    JEL classification:

    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange

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