The annual Cyprus edition of the iFX Expo has concluded with a blast and another vibrant industry event is now behind us with plenty of fresh opinions and new and emerging trends. The exhibition area was once again flooded with a number of forex industry aficionados, while the panel discussions brought in admiration amongst the visitors for the candid talk by industry executives.
After last year the keynote delivered by Google’s Forex and Gaming Industry Manager for Greece and Cyprus, Panos Lamprakos gathered huge interest, he showed up again to illustrate to what extent the changes in the market environment landscape have affected the search trends in the industry.
As many companies related to the forex sector have noticed, there has been an implosion of interest in foreign exchange trading in the aftermath of the Swiss National Bank black swan in January.
While the event has resulted in a “giraffe in my data” phenomenon, industry players should remain focused in what is hot on the market to be able to bid for cheaper and more efficient keyword searches.
Going Beyond FX Panel
From virtual reality to brokers providing asset management services, the “Going Beyond FX Panel” has brought into the fray a variety of opinions on where the industry is heading after widely adopting different asset classes into the previously typical FX offering.
The CEO of Gold-i Tom Higgins started with painting a futuristic picture of a whole new level of user experiences due to the vastly growing technological innovation, and the co-founder and co-CEO of one of the leading education websites in the industry Tradimo, Sebastian Kuhnert added that gamification and education will have a big role to play.
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Adding to the variety of opinions, The CEO of JFD Brokers, Cyril Tabet shared that despite the variety of ways to trade, ultimately the end users were taking the risks on the market. He argued that the future of brokerages is to begin offering a new set of custom designed fully regulated investment products tailored to deliver to clients some long term profits.
Retention has been a big focus in the industry and the panel concluded with a couple of statements supporting the understanding that the future of brokers has to do with making clients profitable.
A Candid Discussion on the SNB Event Effects
The final panel for the day was dedicated to the January SNB black swan which has put the industry into a tailspin. While the subject of the panel was a retrospect, the participants have taken an active view on the matter and some voiceful forward looking statements have been made.
A universal opinion that we are yet to see the full implications of the tightening liquidity and credit line conditions from a number of prime brokers settled in. According to the top executives from ADS Securities, Integral, LCG, OneZero and SwissQuote the full effect of the event is going to be felt within the next 4 to 6 quarters.
Both technologists on the panel, Andrew Ralich and Harpal Sandhu have stated that the issues that prompted some brokers in the industry to undergo substantial service disruption had nothing to do with technology.
Marc Burki from SwissQuote reiterated the point that the Swiss National Bank has massively miscommunicated its intentions to the market. Together with Francois Nembrini from LCG and Iskandar Najjar from ADS Securities, the broker representatives explained that risk management should have been and will be playing a more crucial role for brokers regardless of their model of operation (a-book or b-book).
The participants in the panel were applauded by the audience for presenting a very vibrant and candid discussion which concluded with a member from the audience expressing some criticisms of the way the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority has been handling its duties lately in light of the bankruptcies in the aftermath of the SNB crisis.