July 10, 2018 / 10:57 AM / in 10 months

European bond trade volumes surge in first 6 mths of MiFID II - Tradeweb

LONDON, July 10 (Reuters) - Trading volumes across European bond markets surged in the first half of this year, following the introduction of the wide-ranging EU financial markets directive known as MiFID II at the start of 2018, Tradeweb said on Tuesday.

According to a report from Tradeweb, one of the world’s biggest bond platforms, majority-owned by Thomson Reuters, average trading volume growth in European government bond markets was up 45 percent in the first half of 2018.

Tradeweb said that over 2 trillion euros worth of European government bonds were traded, the first time this milestone has been reached in a half-year.

It said trading volume growth in European corporate bonds was up 51 percent compared with the first half of 2017, and European ETFs were up 59 percent.

The European Union’s Markets in Financial Instruments Directive, or MiFID II, was introduced in January with the aim of boosting transparency in securities trading by forcing banks, asset managers and traders to report detailed information on trillions of euros in transactions.

Repo activity also was growing steadily, Tradeweb said, noting volumes were up 30 percent in H1, versus year-ago levels and were back at levels last seen in 2010.

Tradeweb said that average daily trading volumes across its platforms had hit another record high in June at $590 billion — a 45 percent increase on June 2017.

Tradeweb also reported a surge in Chinese bond activity following the launch of the “Bond Connect” programme.

China and Hong Kong launched the scheme on July 3 2017 to link China’s $9 trillion bond market with overseas investors, the latest step in Beijing’s efforts to liberalise and strengthen the country’s capital markets.

Chinese bond volumes have surpassed $100 billion since the launch of Bond Connect, Tradeweb said. (Reporting by Dhara Ranasinghe and Sujata Rao;)

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