One of the top four UK based spread betting and CFD providers has succumbed to the evolving market place. Forex Magnates has been informed by sources close to the matter, that City Index’s star hire from Bear Stearns is leaving the organisation owned by ICAP’s Michael Spencer.
The firm, which was one of the pioneers in margin-based investment products for both retail and institutional investors in the UK, has been facing an uphill struggle as competitor, IG, dominates the market. City Index was established in 1983, and eight years later the company launched its CFD Trading function in the UK.
Forex Magnates was informed that City Index’s Chief Operating Office (COO), Simon Bird, will be leaving the firm. City Index is positioned as the fourth most popular broker in both spread betting and CFD trading in the UK, according to the Investment Trends leveraged trading report, 2012. The report states that City Index saw its market share decline in the UK CFD market by 1%, in July 2011 it had 7% market share, and in July 2012, it had 6% market share.
The disappointing news reinforces the tough operating conditions for brokers in the margin trading business. In its 2011 annual report, the firm recorded a £9.65 million profit, faring better than its dismal performance in 2010, where it suffered a hefty £5.4 million loss.
A spokesperson commented about the recent changes to Forex Magnates, “City Index is making a number of organizational changes, consistent with our strategy of developing our international business and growing revenues in EMEA and APAC.”
Details from Mr Bird’s Linkedin profile show that he was previously Senior Managing Director at Bear Stearns from 1999 to 2008. Prior to that, he was an equities and derivatives trader at Nat West Securities from 1986 to 1999.
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Simon Bird is registered as the firm’s COO as per Companies House, the main UK database on registered companies. In addition, Simon Bird is registered on the FCA register as a CF1 Director for the firm, since December 2008.
City Index has been involved in a spree of takeovers over the last decade, and most recently it purchased FX Solutions in an attempt to fill the gap in its FX offering.
City Index acquisitions:
City Index offers a range of financial instruments across its global offices, under the About Us section on its website it states that, “As a group, we have over 400 employees worldwide and offices in the UK, Poland, Singapore, China, Israel and Australia. We transact in excess of 2 million trades every month for individuals in over 50 countries worldwide.”