Following ACCC intervention, Australians get greater access to accurate FX calculators

Maria Nikolova

Following the ACCC’s intervention, more than half of the 26 prominent online FX suppliers reviewed now have an online calculator on their website or improved their existing calculator.

Easier comparisons are now available for foreign currency conversions, according to the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) which last year published the findings of an inquiry showing that Australians overpay for FX services.

ACCC today reported that people who use FX services now have greater access to accurate online calculators to help compare prices, although greater transparency is still needed at a time when many Australians are sending money to family and friends overseas.

The ACCC’s Foreign currency exchange services inquiry report, released in September last year, found many Australian consumers were paying too much for FX services. The report found that for just two currencies, USD and GBP, individual consumers who used the big four banks to send international money transfers (IMTs) could have collectively saved about AUD150 million in 2017-18 if they had instead used a lower priced IMT supplier.

One of the major issues the report identified was that many of the online calculators available to consumers to calculate foreign currency conversions did not include the full price of FX transactions, including fees. Further, some suppliers did not even make an online calculator available to consumers looking to find price information.

Following the ACCC’s intervention and subsequent review this year, more than half of the 26 prominent online FX suppliers reviewed now have an online calculator on their website or improved their existing calculator. This will make it easier for consumers looking to compare the total price of FX services from different suppliers.

Several of the suppliers reviewed have said they are working to meet the ACCC’s guidance. The ACCC will continue to engage with those suppliers it considers to be falling short of best practice.

The ACCC’s report also included best practice guidance for FX suppliers to improve how prices are displayed in stores, to make them more accurate and easier to understand and compare. The ACCC will resume engagement with the sector on this issue as COVID-19 restrictions are lifted and suppliers return to normal operations.

Read this next

Institutional FX

Invast Global ramps up its offering with 10 soft commodity CFDs

Sydney-based prime-of-prime provider Invast Global has expanded its offering with the addition of ten soft commodity CFDs, which increases their index and commodity CFD offering to 35 instruments.

Retail FX

FF Simple and Smart Trades says Goodbye to CySEC authorization

The Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC) confirmed that it has wholly withdrawn the Cyprus Investment Firm (CIF) licenses of FF Simple and Smart Trades Investment Services Ltd.

Crypto Insider

Shining the Light in Crypto’s Dark Places

Something changed in regulators’ minds after the November crash of the FTX crypto exchange.

Executive Moves

Financial Commission Adds Sam Low to Dispute Resolution Committee

The Financial Commission (FinaCom PLC), a dispute resolution service that caters to the financial services industry, has appointed Sam Low as the newest member of its Dispute Resolution Committee (DRC).

Digital Assets, Uncategorized

De-facto owner of Bithumb exchange arrested in South Korea

South Korean prosecutors have arrested Kang Jong-Hyun, the anonymous chairman and owner of the country’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Bithumb, on charges of embezzlement and stock manipulation.

Retail FX

Interactive Brokers volumes snap three-month losing streak

Electronic brokerage firm Interactive Brokers LLC (NASDAQ:IBKR) said its trading volumes rose in January, an indication that investor confidence in the financial markets is rebounding after having been fairly mixed over the past few months.

Digital Assets

VVF invests $5 million in Everscale, a potential Layer 2 solution for Venom blockchain

“For us, this is a strategic investment aimed at the technological development of projects and teams around technologies that we focus on and actively develop. In particular, we are talking about the Venom blockchain project and its ecosystem, which is planned to be launched soon and for which Everscale is a potential Layer 2 solution.”

Institutional FX

FXSpotStream volume ends string of declines on January rebound

Trading volumes on institutional FX platforms surged in January as traders increased their bets on central bankers’ policy with evidence mounting that inflation and economic growth are both losing momentum.

Industry News

DeFi firm Aurox launches SEC-compliant crowdfunding campaign on tZERO

“This is a great opportunity for us to raise capital from our community and the broader public on a leading fully regulated platform. We are confident that the tZERO Markets platform will provide us with the exposure and reach we need to attract a diverse investors to support our business growth.”