The partnership basically breaks down barriers between futures and spot forex market participants. Specifically, Reuters will take a market data feed from CME and convert the currency futures prices into the spot forex rates the interbank market is accustomed to using.

Reaction in the FX markets has been positive.

“It’s a good idea because more and more traders are now watching FX futures and the spot FX prices for indications and potential price action,” says Dave Floyd, trader and owner of Aspen Trading. “It reminds me of the way we used to watch the S&P futures so closely for clues on what stocks might be about to make a move.” Despite concerns by some critics that FX is too big a market for an exchange model, “it simply isn’t,” Sears says.

“The bigger it gets the better. If there were only a handful of players, they would all know each other.

Anonymity will add to the appeal of the system,” he says.

With 17,500 stations around the world, Reuters brings the mainstream interbank FX market to the partnership, while the CME contributes a different group: The CME’s customer base is 50 percent hedge funds and commodity trading advisors (CTAs).