“Meet The Experts” reached out to Louis Cooper, Managing Director, OANDA Australia Pty Ltd, for an exclusive perspective on the Australian and New Zealand forex markets and the current climate for brokers residing in this region.
Mr. Cooper has earned a key role as a major player in the Antipodes, having served previously with CMC Markets before joining OANDA in 2012 following a lengthy career. The region itself has been particularly dynamic as of late, with new regulations changing the playing field in New Zealand and Australia becoming more active in Forex.
1. Do you feel the fortification of regulatory standards in New Zealand will lead to an exodus of brokers?
I believe that regulations that protect the industry and the clients are good and OANDA has always been supportive of industry regulations in all jurisdictions where we have presence.
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Whether changes in the NZ market will lead to the exit of some brokers will be quite hard to tell. What I can say is that brokers who genuinely want to serve customers and gain market share in any country or region will welcome any regulatory fortification.
It is only when there are strong regulatory rules and framework that the industry can flourish and the clients be protected. I believe all brokers will have to adjust to new rules and regulations one way or another.
2. In terms of offerings or approach, what does OANDA feel is the greatest area of growth in the Antipodes?
While you would think that Australia is a mature market – for CFDs and Forex – there are still areas of growth and gaps that we see. For example, there are opportunities to provide:
- Faster and more reliable trade execution and less trade rejections. I’ve been talking to our clients for the past few months and one of the recurring themes and messages I’m getting from them is that they appreciate and value the speed of our trade execution. This is definitely one of the advantages and key differentiating factor that we bring to the market. Research shows OANDA performs up to 20 times faster than others in the industry. The difference between an execution of 11 milliseconds versus that of 400 or more can mean the potential for a 25% better return, using our platform. We truly want our clients to succeed and we believe our trading model reflects this.
- New and innovative ways to invest in the Forex and CFD market. For example our copy trading product Trade Leaders has received significant interest from clients who want to diversify their portfolio, are time poor and still want to be involved in the market or are relatively new to trading and want to follow experienced traders with proven ROI over 12 months or more.
- Clients with the ability to develop their own trading models. API trading is a strong growth market in the region. OANDA’s API allows current and prospective partners and individual traders the opportunity to develop customized apps, and trading algorithms and strategies on top of the broker’s award-winning trading platform, using any programming language.
- Superior customer service and education tailored to individual client needs. OANDA has been globally awarded for customer service and I expect us to be the benchmark in Australia and New Zealand as we build our client base.
Based on the initial reaction to OANDA’s arrival in Australia and New Zealand, I’m confident we can double our market share this year. This is a testament to the attractiveness of our technology led, transparent and fair trading model.