Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Consolidation in Brokerage industry


The first thing we would have expected to happen in any other market is that Interactive Brokers would sell its client book to one of the remaining players in the market. Both OANDA and GAIN Capital could use the added market share to effectively match the size of FXCM, and TD Ameritrade could almost double the client assets of its forex branch.
The problem is that neither Interactive Brokers nor any of the other brokers has so far announced that any deal is in the works. While it is possible that such an announcement will come soon, we need to consider that the situation in the American market might prevent this option from materializing.
The U.S. market has been contracting for years now under the heavy weight of compliance with NFA regulations. From feedback Finance Magnates received from firms that left American shores for greener pastures, it seems that the costs of operating in the US outweigh the benefits. Some even say that the only reason for brokers to remain in the U.S. at this point is branding – being an American player means that you stand in some of the stricter regulatory environments in the world, something that carries weight in unregulated markets such as China.