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NEWS TICKER, Tuesday, AUGUST 4TH: The US inland revenue service says the FATCA International Data Exchange Service (IDES) will be unavailable this weekend from 6:00 pm Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) (UTC/GMT -4) on Saturday, August 8th until 2:00 am EDT on Sunday, August 9th. This extends the regularly scheduled maintenance window by an additional 2 hours – According to Telecoms.com Apple has been trialling a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) service in the US and is in talks to launch one in Europe too. Apple filed a patent in 2006 detailing an MVNO set up in which Apple acts as the hub for a number of networks. The idea seems to be for there to be some kind of real-time process in which network operators effectively bid for business each time an Apple MVNO subscriber wants to make a call for example. Apple has already installed an embedded SIM in the latest iPads, so its interest in controlling the relationship between users of its devices and mobile networks is already apparent. The specialist web news service says that Apple is also reportedly working on using Siri to automatically transcribe voicemails. However, any application is years away. Symbiont, a pioneer in the use of the blockchain and distributed ledger technology in capital markets, today issued the first Smart Securities™ on the Bitcoin blockchain. Symbiont’s live platform allows institutions and investors to issue, manage, trade, clear, settle and transfer a range of financial instruments more efficiently on decentralized and distributed peer-to-peer financial networks that are cryptographically secured. Initial use cases for Smart Securities include corporate debt, syndicated loans, securitised instruments and private equity. Generically known as “smart contracts”, these instruments are programmable versions of traditional securities issued on any type of distributed ledger, such as a blockchain. Once a security is issued onto the ledger, it acts autonomously, eliminating traditionally manual mid- and back-office functions. Mark Smith, CEO and co-founder of Symbiont. “With interest in distributed ledger technology growing rapidly, financial institutions are exploring how to leverage it to improve the efficiency and security of trading and processing financial transactions. Smart Securities™ will ultimately change the way that financial instruments are issued, managed, and traded.” Symbiont was formed as a combination of MathMoney (fx) and Counterparty, the most successful Bitcoin 2.0 project, which was founded in 2013. Mark Smith is joined at Symbiont by co-founders Robbie Dermody (President); Evan Wagner (MD, Operations); and Adam Krellenstein (CTO).

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FTT drags down Italian stock trading volumes

Wednesday, 23 April 2014
FTT drags down Italian stock trading volumes Trading in Italian stocks has fallen by 34.2% since the introduction of a Financial Transaction Tax (FTT) twelve months ago, according to research from Credit Suisse. http://www.ftseglobalmarkets.com/media/k2/items/cache/7e19d33790d446c78d426d3c4ca1dd43_XL.jpg

Trading in Italian stocks has fallen by 34.2% since the introduction of a Financial Transaction Tax (FTT) twelve months ago, according to research from Credit Suisse.

The Swiss bank’s Trading Strategy report, released last week, finds that since the Italian FTT (IFTT) was introduced in March 2013, average daily turnover (ADT) in Italian stocks has fallen by 29.7% versus the average from January to February 2013.

Over the same time period, ADT in other European stocks increased by 4.5%; therefore, Italy has experienced a 34.2% relative decline in ADT since the introduction of the tax.



The IFTT followed the introduction of French FTT and adopts a similar model but with extended scope which includes a tax on equity-like financial instruments and derivatives, as well as high-frequency trading.

In Italy, the tax on equities levies 0.10% per exchange transaction and 0.20% on over-the-counter trades. The corresponding derivatives tax levies a fixed charge per transaction, ranging from €0.01875 to €200 depending on the instrument type, with a significant tax discount if the orders are traded on exchange.

Transactions generated by algorithmic trading incur an additional charge of 0.02%, though activities deemed to be market-making are exempt.

A crucial difference between the Italian tax and the French FTT is that CFD hedging activity is not exempt from the IFTT, meaning that it’s therefore not surprising to find that the IFTT has had a much more pronounced impact on volumes.  

“Given the specific nature of the Italian market and the dominance of retail investing, it is no surprise to see the IFTT having an effect on trading volumes, particularly as CFDs are popular instruments in the country,” says Alex Dalley, co-head of sales, BATS Chi-X Europe. “However, the 34.2% drop is certainly higher than expected.”

In France, the reports says FTT appears to have had a modest impact on overall French volumes, but may have contributed to lower liquidity in mid and small cap stocks.

In the 20 months since the FFTT was introduced, average daily turnover (ADT) in French stocks has fallen by 9.2% versus the average from January to July 2012. Over the same time period, ADT in other European stocks fell by 2.8%; therefore, France has experienced a 6.4% relative decline in ADT since the introduction of the tax.

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