The four banks that currently operate the near century-old London Gold Fix have officially begun the process to find a new administrator for the benchmark.
The London Gold Market Fixing Ltd (LGMFL), along with the London Bullion Market Association (LBMA), said in a statement that the choice will be announced in October, and implementation will be complete by the end of 2014.
This is an open Request for Proposal (RFP) process to third-party providers, meaning that it is not restricted to just those companies that submitted proposals for the Silver Price Fix, as some earlier rumours had indicated.
The Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME), which won the contest to administer the silver benchmark, jointly with Thomson Reuters, was the first to confirm its interest in bidding to operate the gold process too.
Bank of Nova Scotia, HSBC, Societe Generale, and Barclays, making up the LGMFL, operate the gold fixing. Deutsche Bank exit from the process earlier this year, amid investigations by German regulators over suspected price manipulation.
Financial benchmarks have come under strong scrutiny from regulators around Europe and the United States since 2012, when it became public that British banks had rigged the London Interbank Offered Rate (Libor).