First-quarter trading of emerging-market debt was off 25% from a year earlier, to $1.22 trillion, mainly because of a sharp drop in trading of Latin American debt.

A report by the New York-based Emerging Market Traders Association said much of the decline in Latin debt trading stemmed from a surge Asian and Russia debt trading, thin profit margins on prices, and an unwillingness to stake out positions as a result of the Asian financial crisis.

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