Exclusive: Turkey bans all accounts and trading with foreign Retail FX brokers

Turkey forex regulation

LeapRate Exclusive… LeapRate has learned that the Turkish government is issuing new regulations, which will make it illegal for Turkish residents to hold accounts or trade leveraged Forex or CFD products with foreign brokers not licensed by the country’s Capital Markets Board (CMB).

Turkey has been slowly tightening the screws when it comes to leveraged trading in general and FX speculation specifically.

New rules were passed earlier this year in Turkey, setting maximum leverage of 10x for Forex and CFD trading, and requiring minimum client deposits of TRY 50,000 (about USD $14,000). The new rules were put in place by the Turkish government as part of measures taken to stem speculation in the depreciating Turkish Lira – which seem to have worked, as the Lira has indeed stabilized in 2017.

However the new, onerous rules have made operating in Turkey a much more difficult proposition for Retail Forex brokers, and have led to a pullout of several prominent foreign brokers from the country, such as Saxo Bank and XTB.

The plan was for these foreign brokers to ‘avoid’ the new rules by taking Turkish clients from subsidiaries abroad, and thus offer them more generous trading conditions (higher leverage, smaller minimum deposit…). Under existing rules, foreign brokers (or any non-CMB licensed broker) cannot conduct any marketing and sales activity toward Turkish traders, and cannot have a physical presence in the country. However, if a Turkish resident found his or her way to the foreign broker, it was fine for the trader to open an account and trade at that broker abroad.

But no more, at least if the Turkish regulators get their way.

A new directive posted today on the Turkish Government’s Official Gazette includes a letter signed by none other than President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan himself, outlining that Turkish residents may trade leveraged products only with CMB licensed brokers.

The posting on the Official Gazette can be seen here (pdf, in Turkish).

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