Currency derivatives - Pioneer: Salomon Brothers

Absorbed into Citigroup almost a decade ago, Salomon Brothers no longer exists as an independent company. But in the 1980s, it was famous - an emblem of the new aggressive Wall Street culture. And, as well as its notorious fixed-income trading department and its innovations in mortgage-backed securities, it was one of the pioneers of the currency derivatives business.

Salomon Brothers brokered what many believe to be the first currency swap. In 1981, David Swenson, a banker in Salomon's corpo