TorFX Comments on OFT Foreign Exchange Super Complaint Against Banks

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Currency broker TorFX reacts to news that the OFT is investigating whether consumers are receiving a poor deal on foreign currency from the major banks.

TorFX

Currency broker TorFX reacts to news that the OFT is investigating whether consumers are receiving a poor deal on foreign currency from the major banks.

Watchdog Consumer Focus has made a "super complaint" to the Office of Fair Trading claiming that consumers are paying too much for foreign currency.

TorFX Managing Director Jon Beddell commented. "The banks provide a number of key services to consumers but foreign exchange is an area in which they are often not very competitive. Many customers find the charges confusing, with 0% commission deals often covering the fact that the exchange rate itself is several percent lower than the underlying market rate. The growth of independent foreign currency brokers is symptomatic of the consumer’s need for more choice in this sector. These companies are growing strongly because they provide a good service and significant savings. It’s not only travel money that is affected by uncompetitive rates, it’s also individuals and companies making international currency transfers. These transfers account for a far larger portion of the FX market than retail travel money. Many consumers don’t realise that there is a cheap and simple alternative to the banks when it comes to converting one currency into another and sending a payment abroad. Independent currency dealers like TorFX can offer competitive and transparent exchange rates that are closer to the underlying wholesale rates that large financial institutions like TorFX have access to. TorFX will also send your funds abroad without charging any fee. The exchange rate savings can be huge on larger currency transfers. For example, a typical TorFX customer transferring money for an overseas property purchase can expect to save as much as 3%. On a £200,000 transfer that’s a saving of £6,000. Another popular service offered by TorFX is the regular overseas payments scheme. Clients with a fixed monthly currency requirement are able to set up a standing order /direct debit to cover mortgage costs, living expenses or any other monthly bills, and will benefit from better exchange rates and no transfer fees. Banks usually charge £25 per transfer. Based on a monthly transfer of £1,000 the savings amount to approximately £700 each year. The message to consumers is to shop around and compare rates. There is far more choice now than ten years ago and you may be surprised at the potential savings."

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Jon Beddell
TorFX
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