LeapRate introduces the Retail FX Volume Index

LeapRate is pleased to announce the launch of a monthly index, measuring global trading volume in the retail FX industry. The LeapRate Retail FX Volume Index is a calculation of aggregated average daily trading volumes across the retail FX universe, at firms such as FXCM, Saxo Bank, FxPro, IG Group, MIG BANK, Swissquote, Gaitame, AvaFX, AxiTrader and others around the world.

Gerald Segal, Managing Director of LeapRate, commented: “As the retail FX sector has matured and become a truly global business, we felt it was time to have a measure of how volumes were trending month by month. After several years of unabated growth in the mid 2000’s, the retail FX sector has seen some ups and downs over the past two years, with the main three causal factors being regulation, increased competition and lower volatility levels. Several companies in the sector have gone public. There is a lot of interest, both within and around the industry, as to how volumes are trending beyond the anecdotal evidence we see here and there from Forex brokerage firms and aggregating networks (ECNs) which release monthly and/or quarterly results.

Mr. Segal continued, “We also believe that there is a lot of misinformation out there regarding the true size and scope of the retail FX sector. (For example, regarding the true size of the Japanese FX market, once the world’s largest). Our approach has always been to take a bottom-up, firm-by-firm approach in getting to our regional and global numbers. While our figures are by nature estimates, as most companies in this industry are private and prefer to keep their numbers private, there is more than enough data out there today for us to use as scientific an approach as possible to come up with what we believe are reliable industry totals.”

The monthly index number for April 2012 is $172 billion, down 5% from March 2012 but up 4% from April 2011. April 2012 continued a slowing volume trend in the retail FX business, as low volatility levels continued across most major currency pairs. The April 2012 past-six-months moving average figure sits at $178 billion. At this point, we expect the May index figure to be much-improved, due to much-increased volatility fed by the Greece-Euro crisis.

The LeapRate Retail FX Volume Index is a monthly measure of activity, stated in billions of dollars per day. It is calculated using proprietary formulas developed by LeapRate. The data input into the model are based on examining monthly and/or quarterly activity levels put out by various retail FX brokerage firms; similar activity levels announced by other FX aggregators such as Forex ECNs (e.g. ICAP, Thomson Reuters, FXall, Hotspot FX) and FX settlement firms (e.g. CLS Group); as well as anecdotal evidence we encounter as part of our general research activities in the Forex sector.

LeapRate is a leading research and information firm serving the global FX industry. Through its partnership with Dow Jones, LeapRate publishes the LeapRate-Dow Jones Forex Industry Report, a comprehensive review of the retail FX industry. Other LeapRate services include Best-of-the-Web FX Research, the Forex Yellow Pages, Forex Exec Search job listings, and our Approved List of regulated FX brokerage firms worldwide. For more information please see our website at www.leaprate.com.

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