US Retail FX brokers suffer steep fall in client deposits, racked up $46K

Retail FX deposits at US brokerages, which have been struggling to eke out a profit in a strict regulatory environment, dropped in March 2022 by $35 million, CFTC data showed.

The brokers, including FCMs that are registered as Retail Foreign Exchange Dealers (RFEDs) and those included as broker-dealers, saw a collective negative change in clients’ deposits month-over-month from February, though differences amongst each broker were more pronounced.

Specifically, the FX funds held at registered brokerages operating in the United States came in at $505 million in March 2022, which is 6 percent less than the $541 million reported in February.

The newest comer to the US FX industry, Markets, continues to take a bigger chunk of the overall retail funds, but at a very limited scale. The broker racked up $46,000 in customer deposits in March from just $2000 a month earlier.

The US arm of forex brand XM provides retail foreign exchange services to US traders amid a tough regulatory environment that has squeezed other providers out of that market. first applied for a forex broker license in the US back in January 2019. The company, however, still has a long way to go to challenge the likes of GAIN Capital and Oanda, which command nearly 70 percent of the US retail market.

After consecutive increases in its market share, GAIN Capital suffered a big drop in retail deposits in March 2022. Specifically, the US largest retail FX broker’s net balances decreased by $14 million, or 7 percent, to $198 million.

Other highlights from the CFTC’s monthly report shows that Interactive Brokers LLC (NASDAQ:IBKR) has racked up $20 million in total deposits. This was down by 6 percent from $20 million in the prior month.

Meanwhile in March, Oanada saw a similar decrease of nearly $14 million, while retail funds at IG US dropped by $3.9 million.

Additionally, Charles Schwab reported some minor changes in client deposits, having fallen by $663,000 or 1 percent month-over-month.

The chart listed below outlines the full list of all FCMs that held Retail Forex Obligations in the month ending March 31, 2022. For purposes of comparison, the figures have been included against their February 2022 counterparts to illustrate disparities.

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