What drives the growth in FX activity? Interpreting the 2007 triennial survey

10 December 2007

The most recent BIS triennial survey shows that turnover in foreign exchange markets increased by more than 70% over the three years to April 2007. Two specific findings stand out. First, the growth in transactions between banks and other financial institutions was particularly strong, consistent with the increasing importance of hedge funds, as well as portfolio diversification by institutional investors with a longer-term horizon, such as pension funds. Second, there has been a marked increase in turnover involving emerging market currencies.

JEL classification: F31, G15, G20.