Instruments and Participants

Over the past forty years, the market for rates instruments used to support rate profile optimization has grown to over $464 trillion (Source: BIS, May 2020 ) and spans an array of instruments including:

  • Fixed for floating rate interest rate swaps (“vanilla swaps”)

  • Fixed for fixed rate (eg basis swaps)

  • Interest only and principal only swaps

  • Overnight interest swaps

  • Contracts for difference and maturity swaps

  • Structured products based on underlying cash flows (eg strips, etc)

  • Caps, floors, collars and other agreements limiting the extent to which market rate changes can impact a borrowing relationship

The participants in these markets include:

  • Corporate treasury desks and funding desks

  • Institutional investors and asset managers

  • Speculators and proprietary trading functions

  • Brokers and other market makers

  • Liquidity management functions of banks and other large financial institutions

  • Risk management functions

  • Insurance companies