At a time when many retail FX firms have been rallying to add offshore Chinese yuan to their list of tradable currencies and demand for yuan liquidity is continually increasing, the notoriously anti-free market Bank of China has taken an unusual step in extending the offshore, Hong Kong based renminbi (CNY) clearing services to include trading hours across Asia, Europe and North America.
The new 20.5 hour service will provide coverage for most geographical regions which have a large proliferation of FX firms, following the move by the Bank of China in June this year which involved the launch of direct GBP/CNY trading.
Hong Kong remains a veritable hub for FX trading, most of which is via the large, interbank sector and across institutional desks, and many FX companies, banks and financial institutions are keen to benefit from the large potential volume that yuan trading may bring to Western markets.
In a corporate statement, the Bank of China yesterday published that it wishes to provide “more comprehensive cross-regional clearing services to overseas participating banks and to clearing banks in other regions” with the new arrangement.”
With the China Construction Bank having been nominated as London’s first renminbi clearing bank, the foundations were laid for the extension of clearing into London’s time zones in order that the offshore yuan can gain further prominence in the world’s largest financial center.