In the early days of the interest rate swaps market, it could take several months to put together and execute a trade. Once a client with a particular need was found, a counterparty had to be identified that would take the other leg of the trade. Long and tortuous negotiation then ensued to agree a mutually acceptable price.
Although it was Citibank in the early 1980s that first truly grasped the fact that a swaps business could be rapidly built if the swaps book wasn't managed on this kind
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