Fortress Prime Debacle Unfolds and Cristiano Ronaldo Enters Forex

FXCM, XTrade, Finatext, MetaQuotes and PrimeXM are among the firms that appeared in last week's top articles.

During the passing week the most interesting news from the online trading industry included revelations about the ongoing situation with Fortress Prime, an in-depth look at how the ageing population is creating opportunities for fintech firms in Japan and the launch of a new features by popular trading platforms. We also saw one of the biggest international sports stars sign up to represent a broker, as well as interesting details about the work of the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission.

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On Monday Finance Magnates broke the news that PrimeXM is the second tech provider to terminate its service to Fortress Prime. PrimeXM was servicing Fortress Prime since December last year under the condition that the broker would do its best to settle at least 25 per cent of its outstanding obligations to client balances every quarter.

We followed up on this with an investigative report showing that FXCM had to write off up to $6.8 million due to issues with Fortress Prime, and that the royal backing that Fortress Prime boasted of turned out to be just a 2% stake, while its majority shareholder is wanted by the FBI and Interpol.


On Tuesday it was announced that after years of popular demand from traders, MetaQuotes has implemented a solution that activates hedging mode in MetaTrader 5. The move could lead new brokerages to license MetaTrader 5 and begin offering the suite to their clients.

Aside from taking positions in opposite directions, the MetaTrader 5 platform will also permit users to set different closing parameters to multiple positions in one direction, instead of having to manually enter a multitude of entry orders that reduce the size of a single position.

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Demographic Dividend

On Wednesday we published an exclusive interview with Ryota Hayashi, the co-founder and CEO of Finatext, who explained some of major developments, including recent milestones that have helped his company quickly expand to both FX and equity-related trading apps for some of the largest Japanese brokers.

Despite the already huge FX trading volumes in Japan, Mr. Hayashi still believes that financial literacy is low in Japan due to the aging population combined with the fast speed of technology evolution. Yet, concurrently, there are large amounts of household savings, nearly 15 trillion US dollars worth in Japan, and this provides a potentially large opportunity to capture market share.

XTrade Scores a Major Goal

On Thursday XTrade has announced an extraordinary football partnership for the industry. The brokerage has tabbed none other than Cristiano Ronaldo as its official ambassador. The deal is noteworthy as high profile football stars have up until now been out of reach for retail trading focused companies.

The move is opening the door for the brokerage to target a number of clients across the globe with a face which most of the global population recognizes very well. The football star has reached close to 200 million social media followers across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Closer Look at CySEC

On Friday we analysed the case for the Cypriot financial watchdog banning binary options. With CySEC facing criticism from the ESMA regarding the conduct of regulated binary options brokers, it has no choice but to approach the matter seriously and make regulated firms adhere to the standards determined by the law.

This came after CySEC released its 2015 annual report recapping the achievements of the regulator in 2015, including €2.65 million in fines against CIFs.  CySEC has been actively engaging in more checks and balances throughout 2015, however a number of clients of brokers from the island are left wondering whether their interests are really being looked after.

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