Indicative of industry-wide decreasing FX spreads.
Leading FX brokerage firm Saxo Bank (a member of LeapRate's Approved List) announced today its results for 2011. Saxo Bank clearly bucked the trend of decreasing FX volumes seen at other Forex firms, reporting that FX volumes rose to $275 billion per month (in 2H-2011), up from $222 billion in the first half of the year (green bars below). And although FX volumes were up nicely, revenues from FX activities fell from $238 million in 1H to $211 million in 2H-2011 (blue bars).
On a per-transaction basis, Saxo Bank is demonstrating a trend we have seen at certain other FX firms, as well as at Forex ECNs – that is lower margins, caused by a more competitive environment in which Forex firms are lowering spreads to attract and keep clients. Saxo's pips-earned-per-round-trip-trade fell in 2H-2011 to a multi-year low of 2.55, as follows:
Overall, Saxo Bank had a very good 2011, with total revenues up 6% over 2010 to DKK 3.5 billion (about $634 million), EBITDA of DKK 1.2 billion ($208 million), and net income of DKK 618 million ($111 million).