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IPC Celebrates 40 Years of empowering traders to connect and communicate

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IPC Celebrates 40 Years of empowering traders to connect and communicate

Revolutionized trading from the first trader turret to comprehensive Trading Communications

IPC Celebrates 40 Years of empowering traders to connect and communicate

IPC Celebrates 40 Years of empowering traders to connect and communicate

It began simply enough in 1973 with a frustrated customer asking a consulting firm to find a way to fix its trading communications equipment so it wouldn’t constantly jam and take its traders out of the market. Rather than try to fix an inadequate and unreliable system, the consulting firm designed an entirely new one and the first trading turret was born.  Forty years later, the company now known as IPC is  a global leader in trading communications solutions with billions of shares traded on its trading communications platform and more than one trillion dollars of trading commerce conducted over its Financial Markets Network every day.

“Close collaboration with our customers to solve problems and drive value with innovative technology is quite literally part of our corporate DNA,” Lance Boxer, chief executive officer for IPC, said.  “This drive to provide innovative products and solutions for financial services firms began 40 years ago when it revolutionized how traders did their jobs.  It continues today with comprehensive unified trading communications and connectivity solutions.  We also recently launched an Enhanced Services division enabling firms to outsource management of their trading communications infrastructure to IPC.”

IPC has a long history of solving customers’ problems.  IPC’s Series 1 turret saw quick global adoption because it dramatically improved the reliability over the existing mechanical solution, which caused lots of trader downtime.  That type of downtime for a trader was, as it still is today, a significant problem even in the days when the Dow Jones Industrial Average hovered in the 800s and the average volume on the NYSE was just 25 million shares.

Those same traders also needed private voice lines to communicate with each other.  With that knowledge, IPC evolved along with the market to offer data connectivity services over its Financial Markets Network.  In 2011, IPC introduced Unigy, a unified applications and communications platform designed to scale to meet the needs of trading organizations of any size.  Unigy is quickly becoming an industry standard as it supports an array of turrets as well as mobile devices, allowing firms the flexibility to meet the varying needs of traders and trade support functions while gaining the benefits of a unified communications solution.

As both business and consumer technologies continue to evolve, IT specialists are now also tasked with managing social media and BYOD programs. IPC is at the forefront of helping customers manage modern challenges like these through offerings like the Unigy’s Pulse Mobile app for collaborative communications and new Enhanced Services offerings. IPC is a trusted partner to customers who need an expert in managing a firm’s entire trading communications infrastructure, across the front, back and middle office and in multiple global locations.

“Since our first days, our primary goal has been to provide our customers with top-of-the-line technology solutions that give them a competitive advantage in every stage of the trading lifecycle,” said IPC’s Boxer. “We thank our customers and employees for their loyalty and commitment to IPC over the past 4 decades and we look forward to driving innovation and delivering value for 40 more years and beyond.”

About IPC
IPC offers high- and low-touch trading communications solutions to the global financial trading community including the top investment banks, hedge funds and investment managers in established and emerging markets. With a 100-percent focus on this sector and 40 years of expertise and an unrivaled record of innovation, IPC provides customers with unified solutions that support collaborative voice trading and real-time electronic trading and market data connectivity.  IPC’s offerings include the first unified communications/application platform, award-winning hard and soft turrets, electronic connectivity services including enhanced voice services, business continuity solutions, and follow-the-sun service and support. IPC’s global reach extends to nearly 60 countries – including a financial extranet of 5,000 on-net locations in over 700 cities and more than 115,000 turrets deployed worldwide. Headquartered in Jersey City, New Jersey, IPC has approximately 1,000 employees located throughout the Americas and the EMEA and Asia-Pacific regions. For more information, visit www.ipc.com.

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Dollar extends decline as risk appetite favors equities

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Dollar extends decline as risk appetite favors equities 1

By Stephen Culp

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The dollar lost ground on Friday, extending Thursday’s decline as improved risk appetite attracted buyers to equities and away from the safe-haven greenback.

The U.S. dollar has been weighed down by a string of soft labor market data, even as President Joe Biden’s proposed $1.9 trillion spending package takes shape.

“What the foreign exchange market is looking at in the short term, is the dollar is going to be weak despite progress in the economy because this country has a huge deficit problem,” said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Spartan Capital Securities in New York. “The dollar index could easily test the lows of last September.”

Also weighing on the dollar, the real yield gap between the United States and Germany is at its tightest since March, analysts said, despite the recent rise in U.S. Treasury yields.

Bitcoin continues to hover at record highs, and the world’s largest cryptocurrency was last up 2.6% at $52,931.46, nearing $1 trillion in market capitalization.

Its smaller rival, ethereum, was last down 1.0% at $1,920.13.

The digital currencies have gained about 82% and 1,400%, respectively, year to date, leading some analysts to warn of a speculative bubble.

“There may be a place for (cryptocurrencies) somewhere down the road, but the theories that cryptos will replace paper currency are far-fetched,” Cardillo added. “It’s total speculation at this point and people are going to pay the price.”

The Australian dollar, which is closely linked to commodity prices and the outlook for global growth, was last up 1.15% at $0.7858, touching its highest since March 2018.

The New Zealand dollar also gained, closing in on a more than two-year high, and the Canadian dollar advanced as well.

Sterling rose to an almost three-year high amid Britain’s aggressive vaccination programme. It had last gained 0.34% to $1.40.

The euro showed little reaction to a slowdown in factory activity indicated by purchasing manager index data, rising 0.29% to $1.2126.

The yen, gained ground against the dollar and was last at 105.495, creeping above its 200-day moving average for the first time in three days.

(Reporting by Stephen Culp, additonal reporting by Tommy Wilkes; editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise)

 

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Bitcoin hits $1 trillion market cap, soars to another record high

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Bitcoin hits $1 trillion market cap, soars to another record high 2

By Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss and Tom Wilson

NEW YORK/LONDON (Reuters) – Bitcoin touched a market capitalization of $1 trillion as it hit yet another record high on Friday, countering analyst warnings that it is an “economic side show” and a poor hedge against a fall in stock prices.

The world’s most popular cryptocurrency jumped to an all-time high above $54,000, setting it on course for a weekly jump of more than 11%. It has surged roughly 64% so far this month and was last up 5.5% at $54,405.

Bitcoin’s gains have been fueled by signs it is gaining acceptance among mainstream investors and companies, from Tesla and Mastercard to BNY Mellon.

All digital coins combined have a market cap of around $1.7 trillion.

“If you really believe there’s a store of value in bitcoin, then there’s still a lot of upside,” said John Wu, president of AVA Labs, an open-source platform for creating financial applications using blockchain technology.

“If you look at gold, it has a market cap $9 or $10 trillion. Even if bitcoin gets to half of gold’s market cap, that still growth of 4X, or $200,000. So I don’t know when it stops rising,” he added.

Still, many analysts and investors remain skeptical of the patchily regulated and highly volatile digital asset, which is little used for commerce.

Analysts at JP Morgan said bitcoin’s current prices were well above estimates of fair value. Mainstream adoption increases bitcoin’s correlation with cyclical assets, which rise and fall with economic changes, in turn reducing benefits of diversifying into crypto, the investment bank said in a memo.

“Crypto assets continue to rank as the poorest hedge for major drawdowns in equities, with questionable diversification benefits at prices so far above production costs, while correlations with cyclical assets are rising as crypto ownership is mainstreamed,” JP Morgan said.

Bitcoin is an “economic side show,” it added, calling innovation in financial technology and the growth of digital platforms into credit and payments “the real financial transformational story of the COVID-19 era.”

Other investors this week said bitcoin’s volatility presents a hurdle for it to become a widespread means of payment.

On Thursday, Tesla boss Elon Musk – whose tweets have fueled bitcoin’s rally – said owning the digital coin was only a little better than holding cash. He also defended Tesla’s recent purchase of $1.5 billion of bitcoin, which ignited mainstream interest in the digital currency.

Bitcoin proponents argue the cryptocurrency is “digital gold” that can hedge against the risk of inflation sparked by massive central bank and government stimulus packages designed to counter COVID-19.

Yet bitcoin would need to rise to $146,000 in the long-term for its market cap to equal the total private-sector investment in gold via exchange-traded funds or bars and coins, according to JP Morgan.

Rival cryptocurrency ether traded down 0.3%, at $1,934.67, still near a record of $1,951 reached earlier on Friday. It has been lifted by growing institutional interest, after its futures were launched on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.

(Reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss in New York and Tom Wilson in London; Editing by Dan Grebler)

 

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UK retail sales drop, NatWest loss dampen FTSE 100 mood

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UK retail sales drop, NatWest loss dampen FTSE 100 mood 3

By Shivani Kumaresan and Amal S

(Reuters) – The FTSE 100 was muted on Friday as a bigger-than-expected drop in January retail sales underscored the business damage from a prolonged nationwide lockdown, while NatWest group fell after swinging to an annual loss.

The commodity-heavy FTSE 100 was flat as gains in miners Anglo American, Rio Tinto and BHP Group capped losses.

Oil producers BP and Royal Dutch Shell fell 1.2% and 0.5%, respectively as crude prices slid.

Data on Friday showed British retail sales tumbled much more than expected in January as non-essential shops went back into coronavirus lockdowns. Flash readings of business activity data, due at 0930 GMT, are likely to show the services sector struggling to return to growth in February.

“The 8.2% fall was considerably higher than we’d expected (around 4%), and provides clear evidence the hit to consumer spending is noticeably larger than it was during the November restrictions,” said James Smith, market economist at ING.

He added focus will now be on UK’s COVID-19 vaccination program and easing of restrictions, to drive economic recovery.

The FTSE 100 has recovered nearly 35% from its March 2020 lows but has been largely range-bound since the beginning of this year as a nationwide lockdown hurt business activity, undermining hopes of economic growth in the second half of the year.

The domestically-focused mid-cap FTSE 250 index rose 0.2%, with consumer and industrials stocks leading gains.

NatWest fell 0.6% after the financial services provider swung to a full-year loss for 2020 after COVID-19 lockdowns crunched household spending.

Segro Plc rose 1.7% after the real estate investment trust reported a near 11% jump in annual profit for 2020.

Banking group TBC Bank fell 2.3% after a slump in annual underlying profit due to lower interest rates and limited lending growth in the fourth quarter from the COVID-19 pandemic.

(Reporting by Shivani Kumaresan and Amal S in Bengaluru; Editing by Vinay Dwivedi and Krishna Chandra Eluri)

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