reserve bank of australia

Survey of Foreign Exchange and Derivative Markets

In April 2019, the Reserve Bank conducted a survey of activity in foreign exchange and over-the-counter (OTC) interest rate derivatives markets in Australia. This was part of a global survey of 53 countries, coordinated by the Bank for International Settlements (BIS). Similar surveys have been conducted every three years since 1986.

Globally, the Australian dollar remains the fifth most traded currency, and its share of turnover was largely unchanged at around 7 per cent. The AUD/USD remains the fourth most traded currency pair, accounting for a similar share of global turnover as in the previous survey in April 2016.

Activity in Australia’s foreign exchange market has remained stable since the April 2016 survey. Total turnover decreased by around 2 per cent, compared with a 30 per cent increase in global turnover over the same period. As a result, the Australian foreign exchange market now ranks as the tenth largest in the world, versus the eighth largest in April 2016.

Activity in Australian OTC interest rate derivatives markets increased markedly over the three-year period, reflecting an increase in turnover of interest rate swaps and forward rate agreements. This is consistent with trends in global turnover of OTC interest rate derivatives, which more than doubled between April 2016 and April 2019.

The preliminary results of the global turnover survey and links to other participating jurisdictions’ results are available from the BIS website. More detailed results for the Australian market are available on the 2019 BIS Triennial Survey Results – Australia page.

The BIS will also publish global data on amounts outstanding in OTC derivatives markets in November 2019. The Reserve Bank will publish Australian data on outstanding OTC derivatives at that time.