Matchbook FX

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Matchbook FX
Online Foreign Exchange ECN
Founded 1999 (1999)
Founders Daniel Uslander, Ron Comerchero, Josh Levy
Defunct 2002 (2002)
Headquarters New York, NY, US

Matchbook FX was an internet-based electronic communication network ("ECN" or Electronic Trading Network) for trading currency online in the FX or Foreign exchange market. It operated between 1999 and 2002.

History[edit]

Founded in 1999, Matchbook FX (sometimes referenced as "MatchbookFX", "MatchBook FX" or "Match-Book FX") was the world's first [1][2] open and inclusive internet ECN for Foreign Exchange trading,[3] available to all willing FX trading participants including hedge funds, CTAs, banks, corporations and, uniquely at the time, retail FX traders as well.[4]

Matchbook FX was initially conceived by Daniel Uslander, Ron Comerchero (commodity futures and equities traders) and Josh Levy (former Goldman Sachs FX trader) of the New York-based proprietary FX trading firm Valhalla Forex Inc and Mark S Smith of the Florida-based equities-trading technology firm NexTrade ECN. Several months later, GlobalNetFinancial.com, a NASDAQ-traded financial news and technology firm, bought in as the third major equity partner in the three-way joint venture.[5]

As one of the earliest providers of open-access FX e-trading, Matchbook FX received considerable acclaim for its efforts to instigate change and level the playing field in the insular, closed, clubby and highly profitable domain of interbank Forex dealing, likely to the chagrin of the major international money center banks.[6] Matchbook FX was recognized in 2000 as one of Silicon Alley Reporter Magazine's "12 to Watch", its annual listing featuring top internet companies.[7]

Unique aspects[edit]

Matchbook FX functioned as an open limit order-book, also known as a Central Limit Order Book or CLOB - similar to an online exchange - where any participant subscribed to the network could either post its own bids and offers just like a market maker, or immediately trade on any other existing bids and offers for a given currency. This process allowed users to join or better the prevailing prices in the network and thus directly impact (and tighten) the bid-ask spread widths on which they traded.

Final days[edit]

The implosion of the dot-com bubble in 2000 severely hindered Matchbook FX's ability to raise continued operating funds. The stock price of GlobalNetFinancial.com (NASDAQ: GLBN), Matchbook FX's main financial backer, fell from a high of over $70 per share in 2000 to less than $1 per share by the end of 2001. By 2002, Matchbook FX was sold to a consortium of investors who made the decision to discontinue the Matchbook FX brand.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Waters Magazine - Special Report on Best Execution May 1st, 2001 http://www.watersonline.com/public/showPage.html?page=271702
  2. ^ Waters Online SPECIAL REPORT: FOREIGN EXCHANGE IT - 1 May 2001 http://www.watersonline.com/public/showPage.html?page=271704
  3. ^ Euromoney Magazine Cover Article A True Exchange for Forex June 2000 http://www.euromoney.com/Article/1008094/E-forex-A-true-exchange-for-forex.html
  4. ^ The Washington Post, August 12, 1999, Section A; p. A01. Dugan, Ianthe Jeanne, "Do-It-Yourself Traders’ Riskiest Purchase: Currency," http://pqasb.pqarchiver.com/washingtonpost/access/43884076.html?FMT=ABS&FMTS=ABS:FT&date=Aug+12%2C+1999&author=Ianthe+Jeanne+Dugan&desc=Do-It-Yourself+Traders%27+Riskiest+Purchase%3A+Currency
  5. ^ GlobalNet, NexTrade ECN and Valhalla Forex Announce Launch of Matchbook FX, LLC. http://www.prnewswire.co.uk/cgi/news/release?id=51825
  6. ^ FX Week Magazine, "New Web Trading Service Tightens Squeeze on Traditional FX Business", October 18, 1999 | Vol 10 No 41 http://www.tacticalassetmanagement.com/1999.10.18-FXweek.htm
  7. ^ MatchbookFX Named One of Silicon Alley Reporter's Silicon Alley Reporter "12 to Watch"; Annual Listing Features Top Internet Companies of 2000. http://www.highbeam.com/search.aspx?q=MatchbookFX%20Named%20One%20of%20Silicon