FXCM Ends 2013 in The Green – Retail Volumes up 14% & Institutional up by 72%

One of the world’s largest brokerage firms operating in the FX markets has reported operating metrics for the month of

fxcm_logoFXCM, a leading listed broker-dealer has announced its monthly and yearly trading performance. Overall volumes on a year-on-year basis were dramatically up, however the firm saw a slowdown in the traditionally quiet month of December.

The broker saw activity in its institutional division skyrocket, with yearly volumes crossing 70%. FXCM’s strategy to strengthen its institutional arm through strategic mergers and acquisitions has paid off.

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Among its many purchases, FXCM acquired Lucid Markets in 2012, its opening into the institutional FX algorithmic trading arena. This was followed by the acquisition of Faros Trading in September 2013.

Margin FX trading has been evolving over the last fifteen years, this has been due to the standardisation of e-trading and as the asset class becomes more acceptable among the buy-side. According to data reported by the BIS 2013 Triennial survey, the market is attracting non-traditional participants including; asset and fund managers, emerging market tier 2 banks and pension funds.

FXCM’s institutional figures come as a surprise to some, in-times when the world’s leading inter-dealer trading venues such as Reuters and EBS have seen a backlash in their trading metrics.

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On the other hand, the mid-tier institutional segment, in which firms like FXCM operates in has been seeing promising growth. Rival, GAIN Capital has witnessed strong growth in its institutional arm, GAIN GTX saw a 97.7% increase in trading volumes in December 2013 from figures reported a year earlier.

December 2013 Retail Trading Metrics

  • Retail customer trading volume(1) of $272 billion in December 2013, 12% lower than November 2013 and 6% higher than December 2012. Volume from indirect sources was 46% of total retail volume(1) in the fourth quarter 2013.
  • Retail customer trading volume(1) for the fourth quarter 2013 was $895 billion, 9% lower than the third quarter 2013, and 1% higher than the fourth quarter 2012. Retail customer trading volume(1)for full year 2013 was $4.1 trillion, 14% higher than 2012.
  • Average retail customer trading volume(1) per day of $13.6 billion in December 2013, 7% lower than November 2013 and 1% higher than December 2012.
  • An average of 370,305 retail client trades per day in December 2013, 4% lower than November 2013 and 10% lower than December 2012.
  • Tradable accounts(2) of 188,130 as of December 31, 2013, a decrease of 267, or 0% from November 30, 2013, and a decrease of 2,087, or 1%, from December 31, 2012.

December 2013 Institutional Trading Metrics

  • Institutional customer trading volume(1) of $146 billion in December 2013, 24% lower than November 2013 and 83% higher than December 2012.
  • Institutional customer trading volume(1) for the fourth quarter 2013 was $515 billion, 11% lower than the third quarter 2013, and 131% higher than the fourth quarter 2012. Institutional customer trading volume(1) for full year 2013 was $2 trillion, 72% higher than 2012.
  • Average institutional trading volume(1) per day of $7.3 billion in December 2013, 21% lower than November 2013 and 74% higher than December 2012.
  • An average of 38,904 institutional client trades per day in December 2013, 4% higher than November 2013 and 244% higher than December 2012.

(1)Volume that FXCM customers traded in period translated into US dollars.

(2)An account that has sufficient funds to place a trade in accordance with FXCM trading policies.

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