What should you do? – IC Markets moving overseas clients to Seychelles
Update 21 Jan 2021 – IC Markets Australia announces on 7 Dec 2020 that it will reduce leverage to 30:1, provide negative balance protection, among other changes, in accordance with new ASIC regulations. Clients who wish to keep up to 500:1 leverage should apply as ‘pro trader’ (subject to wealth conditions – have net assets of A$2.5mil or gross income over last two years of A$250,000)
Alternatively, they can transfer their account to IC Markets Seychelles to continue trading with up to 500:1 leverage. I write in detail what options you can take with regards to this new rule here.
Update: 25 June 2019 – IC Markets has sent out an email reversing the decision to move non Australian clients to their Seychelles entity. All clients will remain under IC Markets Australia, with ASIC regulation and with no changes to their trading conditions.
In light of the most recent news (21 June 2019) that IC Markets has given non-Australian clients the option to automatically be moved to ICM Seychelles, or opt-out and continue staying with ICM Australia, I thought I’d write what is the best course of actions for clients to take.
To avoid any disruption to your trading, especially those who are trading EAs, I think the best move is for clients to move to ICM Seychelles for now (no action required from you as per IC Markets emailer). Your funds continue to stay with IC Markets’s Australian banks, and accounts are segregated from IC Market’s company funds, as required by Seychelles regulation.
You can always move back to IC Markets Australia if they are allowed to continue offering their services to overseas clients after 30 June 2019
If for any reason you dislike ICM Seychelles after 30 June 2019, you can always start searching for a new broker that has better regulation, like a UK FCA one. The key thing here is to avoid disruption to your trading
If your trading is less disruption sensitive – i.e. you are trading manually, I think it is fine to continue remaining in ICM Australia and see whether IC Markets Australia will be allowed to continue providing services to you after 30 June 2019, by the ASIC.
With regards to clients receiving a commission discount from IC Markets, as per our website’s offer here, you will continue to receive your commission discount regardless whether you are staying in IC Markets Australia or Seychelles.
Why is this happening?
Because of the recent EU regulator (ESMA) effecting rules that reduce leverage brokers are allowed to provide to 30:1 or less, and the fact that forex margin trading is banned in China, unless the brokerage is approved (which none are), more overseas clients are starting to find Australian brokers as a safe haven away from these restrictions – And ASIC is not happy with that. They do not wish for AFS licensees to be breaking the law overseas by soliciting or providing such services to offshore clients. Source: ASIC media release 11 Apr 2019