Looks like the opposition to the CFTC rules is picking up: Following the creation of Forex Dealers Coalition (www.fxdc.org) by most of US forex brokers, Introducing Brokers, who are expected to be severely hit by the new rules as well, are forming a coalition of their own.
Today, a group of leading Forex Introducing Brokers (IBs) announced the formation of www.ibcoalition.org, an organization comprised of independent, regulated Forex Introducing Brokers who have joined together to challenge the proposed CFTC rules titled “Regulation of Off-Exchange Retail Foreign Exchange Transactions and Intermediaries,” 75 FR 3282 (Jan. 20, 2010).
The main mission of the IB coalition is to suggest significant changes to the proposed CFTC regulations. The IBs currently participating in www.ibcoalition.org are ATC Brokers (NFA Member #0358522), BackBay FX (NFA Member #0388617), Currensee (NFA Member #0403251), Fast Trading Services LLC d/b/a FastBrokers.com (NFA Member #0342002), Forex On The Go, LLC (NFA Member #409594) and Gecko Financial Services, Inc. (NFA Member #0402367).
“We formed IBcoalition.org to come together as regulated IB businesses to oppose the proposed CFTC regulations that, if passed, will significantly change our businesses,” said Dave Lemont CEO Currensee. “Those of us in the IB Coalition are, we believe, the types of firms the Commission should be supporting as alternatives to the fraudulent unregistered solicitors the Commission has spent so much time and effort shutting down over the years. Unfortunately, though, in its zeal to curtail fraudulent solicitation practices, the Commission is proposing a set of rules that needlessly restrict legitimate Forex activities and will, if adopted, seriously undermine our ability to operate successfully as regulated alternatives. We welcome the opportunity to meet with the Commission and present our comments directly.”
The pending CFTC rulings propose that a Forex IB must enter into a guarantee agreement with a CFTC-regulated Forex Dealer Member (FDM), along with a requirement that the Forex IB may be a party to only one guarantee agreement at a time. By asking IBs to enter into an exclusive arrangement with only one FDM, IBs are limited in where they can refer customers, which creates a conflict of interest and is not aligned with the best interest of the customer. Independent IBs bring a valuable service to the retail trader. By carefully matching a trader’s style and needs with the right broker as it relates to spreads, trading platforms and customer service offerings, independent IBs help retail customers make the decision that’s right for them. Furthermore, these proposed rule changes are contradictory to the current CFTC policy in place for the on-exchange futures market, which allows independent IBs to introduce business to multiple Futures Commission Merchants thus enabling IBs to do what is in the best interest of their clients. The IB Coalition views the CFTC proposed rules as needlessly restricting legitimate Forex activities and capable of pushing Forex business off-shore, creating new opportunities for non-regulated or fraudulent businesses who don’t care about U.S. regulatory requirements.
The IB Coalition recently submitted a 10-page letter to the CFTC and, among other points, suggested the following changes to the proposed rulings
- First, the IB Coalition urged the CFTC to revise the proposed rules to permit a Forex IB to operate either as an independent IB subject to the same minimum capital requirements that apply to a futures IB or as a guaranteed IB.
- Second, the IB Coalition asked the CFTC to undertake a study of the retail Forex markets to assure that the rules it ultimately adopts are based on a solid factual understanding of the markets and are tailored accordingly.
- Third, the IB Coalition proposed the CFTC defer to NFA to set appropriate leverage restrictions as it relates to the proposed 10:1 leverage. An onerous leverage restriction, such as this, creates opportunities for unregistered fraudulent schemes to exploit U.S. customers is contrary to the public interest.
“As an IB, our job is to be objective and help the trader make the best decision about which broker best suits their needs,” says Stephen Leahy, President Back Bay FX. “The proposed CFTC rulings compromise the objectivity we are able to bring to our clients and completely disregards the best interest of the customer. Joining forces with the other IBs participating in IBcoalition.org is an important step in articulating our concerns both from a business and consumer-protection perspective. We welcome other IBs to join us in opposing the CFTC proposed rulings as it is currently written.”
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The IB Coalition urges traders to make their voice heard by submitting their comments at www.ibcoalition.org.
IBcoalition.org is an organization comprised of independent, regulated Forex Introducing Brokers who have joined together to challenge the proposed CFTC rules titled “Regulation of Off-Exchange Retail Foreign Exchange Transactions and Intermediaries,” 75 FR 3282 (Jan. 20, 2010). The main mission of the IB coalition is to suggest significant changes to the proposed CFTC regulations and a number of Introducing Brokers have already joined the group. To get more information or find out how to join, please visit www.ibcoalition.org.
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