New Markets, Members, Certifications, Educational Initiatives, Strategic Partnerships, and More During 2014
January 31 2015: New York & Hong Kong: FinaCom PLC, operator of the independent self-regulatory and dispute resolution organization, the Financial Commission (FinancialCommission.org) for Forex, CFD’s, Binary Options, and Cryptocurrency, today releases its 2014 Annual Report as presented here below.
Financial Commission, thru its offering to qualifying brokerages who meet and maintain the required criteria for membership within the organization, provides customers of member-firms the ability to seek a viable remedy via a free and fair dispute resolution process, when unable to resolve complaints directly with their broker.
During 2014 a number of major milestones unfolded, and as was reported on the Financial Commissions website during the year, such as new markets added and divisions created, in addition to the hiring of new staff, appointment of committee members, and strategic partnerships, as well as educational content and participation at several key industry events.
Below is a recap of our 2014 annual report for our members, their clients, and the public, and for brokerages that are considering the benefits of obtaining membership with the Financial Commission.
In addition, data compiled from various statistics related to complaints processing, the number of filings and other related metrics, presented below, can help provide a picture into the full year 2014.
Full Year 2014 Statistics in Review:
During 2014 a total of 58 complaints were filed in total, of which 37 were against current members, and whereas 21 were against non-members of Financial Commission.
The claims involved amounts ranging from as low as $24 to as a high as $119,259 during the year. In total, 53 number of the filed complaints were Forex related, and the remaining 5 were pertaining to Binary Options trading.
35 Complaints were successfully resolved, using the Financial Commission Dispute Resolution Process, and 1 complaint still remain in progress (as of this writing).
- Complaints filed against Members 37
- Complaints filed against non-Members 21
- Maximum complaint amount $119,259
- Minimum complaint amount $24
- Not Enough Information 12
- Still In Progress 1
With a specialized focus in Forex, CFD’s, Binary Options, and Cryptocurrencies, Financial Commission continues to focus on growing its effort to help the online brokerage industry and benefit online brokers and their respective traders, by expanding its solutions to more and more companies, as well as enhancing the number of solutions the Financial Commission offers to its members.
In order to achieve this outcome, during 2014, the Financial Commission participated in a number of key forex conferences, appointed a new member to its DRC committee, and developed new methods to cover additional instruments and cater to a different segment of the market – related to binary options, by certifying platform technology.
Participation in Forex Industry Conferences in 2014:
|At the start of 2014, the Financial Commission participated in the iFX EXPO International Conference in Macau, an important industry conference in Asia bringing a diverse crowd of brokerages and platform vendors together in one place.|
|The FX Conference in Turkey, organized by Forex Magnates, was also another important event that the commission participated in, during the first half of 2014.|
|At FX Congress in Russia, organized by the first Russian SRO CRFIN, where Anatoly Bulanov Head of DRC presented a benchmarking study of various local dispute resolution examples, highlighting their advantages and disadvantages.|
|At the end of H1 2014 the Financial Commission participated at the iFX EXPO International in Cyprus, and Chairman Peter Tatarnikov was a speaker, and presented a keynote speech regarding the functions of the organization as part of the presentation.|
Educational Initiatives and Public Speaking:
- In April, at the FX Conference in Turkey, Financial Commission Presented an Alternative Dispute Solution to Attendees for the Turkish Market.
- In June, at the iFX Expo, the Financial Commission Presented Tools for Sustainable Industry Development
- In August, the Financial Commission Announced the Launch of Educational Webinars
- In September Financial Commission Chairman Peter Tatarnikov conducted an interview on Binary Options development, with a transcript published on our website.
- In November, Financial Commission published steps on How to Choose a Broker, as part of its goal to continually provide educational materials to traders.
|In June, Juan Jutgla become a member of the Financial Commission’s DRC|
|In October, Financial Commission announced it had appointed Akin Abbak to the DRC|
|In December, Financial Commission announced the appointment of Zack Ioannou as Head of the DRC|
New Solutions and Milestones:
|In July, the Financial Commission began publishing randomly selected complaints, that were subsequently anonymized in order to focus on the context of the issues that arose, and how they were later resolved through this unique mediation process.|
|Following the earlier announcement in July, The Financial Commission said it completed the first binary options certification process for the platform Binarystation for Binary Options, from the technology provider Binaryware LLC USA.|
|In August, the Financial Commission Announced the Launch of Educational Webinars, during which as series of webinars were conducted with Financial Commission Chairman Peter Tatarnikov.|
|The Financial Commission in early September announced the launch of the Crypto Division in order to provide its membership benefits to the Cryptocurrency industry, and in response to increased brokerage & trader demand of digital currency trading capabilities (such as Bitcoin,etc..).|
|The Financial Commission announced at the end of September that it signed an agreement with Ibinex (www.Ibinex) to provide regulatory services and compliance oversight for its planned Cryptocurrency ECN. The Ibinex project was developed and managed by Gallant Partners (GP), and the solution will enable brokers to offer cryptocurrency related trading products through Ibinex’s regulated ECN|
|Earlier in October the Commission had announced the successful certification of technology provider Act Forex. The company’s platforms include spot Forex, Forex Options, Forex Forwards, CFDs, ETFs, Futures and cryptocurrency. ActTrader is compliant with NFA, FSA UK, FSA Japan, and MiFID, according to the company.|
|In December, Financial Commission certified iBinex, a newly launched cryptocurrency ECN aimed to deliver liquidity to brokers for markets in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies that are becoming increasingly liquid and in-demand by traders.|
New Member Announcements During 2014:
|In January, Financial Commission announced new member: RoboForex|
|In September, Financial Commission announced new member: MTrading|
|In October, Financial Commission announced new Member: TraderGlobal|
Member Firms at End of 2014:
Current Members of the Dispute Resolution Committee (DRC) include:
- Zack Ioannou – Head of the DRC
- Ilan Azbel – CEO, AutoChartist
- Francesc Riverola – CEO, FX Street
- Carl Elsammak – CEO, Kammas
- Ilya Sorokin – CEO, ACT Forex
- Simon Grunfeld – Founder – Gallant Partners
- Andrew Ralich – Co-Founder, oneZero Financial
- Lior Nabat – CEO, Tradency
- Aleksey Kutsenko – CEO, Tools4Brokers.com
- Kevin Millien – President, Millien Consulting Group
- Juan Pablo Jutgla – CEO Better Way FX Consulting
- Akin Abbak – Managing Partner, Abbak Attorneys at Law
As part of the organizations mission statement to help customers through educational channels while providing brokerages an alternative medium to resolve disputes efficiently, the Financial Commission plans to continue to enhance its ability to cater to traders from a diverse range of markets, and across popular trading instruments such as spot Forex, CFDs, Binary Options, and Cryptocurrencies.
More Than Just Alternative Dispute Resolution, and Outsourced Compliance, Financial Commission helps in Multiple Ways:
In a world saturated with online brokerage and websites marketing often-inaccurate information or through un-regulated jurisdictions, the need to screen and verify information related to trading becomes even more important – yet remains incredibly challenging. This challenge is even more pronounced for people with no trading experience (i.e. beginners) and even sometimes to those who are more advanced or with multiple brokerages accounts already.
For example, one recent event highlighted weaknesses in the system – in one area – after recent volatility in the Swiss Franc (CHF) caused a large gap in related forex market prices. This event caused significant losses to traders that were short the CHF, even causing negative balances for some, and reminded of the importance to read and understand the customer agreement and how it defines the scope of the relationship between a customer and their broker, and provides a legal basis for resolving complaints.
Recent Market Conditions in Early 2015 Highlight Importance of Education and Due Diligence
As a large number of customers as well as their brokers had incurred negative trading balances after the SNB discontinued the minimum rate for the EUR/CHF pair and the above mentioned market gap occurred, the amount of losses that brokerage firms and in some cases their clients had to absorb was staggering, and ranging in the hundreds of millions of dollars or even close or higher than $1billion as the damages are still being calculated, as reported by Forex Magnates in the days following.
This event with the CHF gap itself will be the subject of many future developments and changes related to how forex trading is conducted, and has already caused significant changes. Although it is not the first time the FX market has gapped – it was very significant.
The Financial Commission Role in Helping Brokers and Their Customers
The above mentioned CHF event also emphasizes why using an organization such as the Financial Commission can help mitigate the sometimes-often hidden risks contained within either a brokers’ customer-agreement and/or in the rate logic of how their trading platform handles and processes trading instructions or how it will implement any disaster recovery procedures when needed. This can be the difference between your broker going bankrupt or protecting itself and its clients from a market anomaly, and the steps that the Financial Commission takes for its membership requirements adds an extra layer of due diligence to help mitigate that risk or minimize it.
In 2015, in addition to the above mentioned reasons for us to continue to offer our membership to the online brokerage community, and to their clients, the organization is focused on adding more members, as well as certifying more trading platforms, and we are pleased to report that 2014 was a great success. We are looking forward to a better year in 2015, and welcome the opportunity to serve you. To learn more contact us or visit FinancialCommission.org