Saxo Capital Markets, the Asia Pacific subsidiary of Saxo Bank, today announced the launch of the firm's fourth office in Asia, Saxo Capital Markets HK Limited (SCM HK), boosting its presence in the region with the extension of its multi-asset online trading platform to meet growing retail trading demand in Hong Kong.
The post-global financial crisis sees a paradigm change in retail investment behavior in Hong Kong - with stronger emphasis on portfolio and risk diversification. Market uncertainties over the past two years have also created upsides in non-equity asset classes including forex and commodities, says Francis Lee, Managing Director of SCM HK, we are seeing a trend for Hong Kong retail investors, who have traditionally traded equities and warrants, moving towards multi-asset investing. The change in investment mentality will present opportunities for Saxo.
SCM HK offers investors forex and equities trading on its award-winning multi-asset trading platform, SaxoTrader. Clients can trade over 13,000 stocks on 22 exchanges, including Stock Exchanges in Hong Kong, Singapore and Australia, 160 currency pairs and more than 40 Forex Options on SaxoTrader. SCM HK provides value-added services such as live prices and real-time chat with professional traders. In addition, SCM HK also offers white label solutions to clients such as Citi and BWC Forex.
According to the BIS Quarterly Review, daily average foreign exchange market turnover reached US$4 trillion in 2010, 20% higher than in 2007. The growth in Hong Kong was even more significant. Daily direct customer trading of spot forex transactions in Hong Kong grew 86% from US$5.4 billion in 2007 to US$10.1 billion in 2010, leading Hong Kong to be the sixth largest FX market globally in terms of daily FX turnover.
We expect forex trading turnover in Hong Kong to continue to grow. Currently, only 50% of global forex trading is being executed electronically. Reduced transaction costs and increased market liquidity have led to a structural change in forex trading behavior, and we can expect more retail investors in Hong Kong, and globally, to switch to electronic trading as a result.
With the Asia Pacific region currently accounting for a third of the Group's revenue and new business, the launch of Saxo Capital Markets HK Limited (SCM HK) is a strategic move by the Group to strengthen and expand its trading presence in the Asia. The new opening demonstrates the Group's commitment to the region.
We anticipate robust growth in multi-asset online trading as the needs of the two million retail investors grow and diversify in tandem with the changing market dynamics in this city. Saxo's launch in Hong Kong is aligned with its strategic roadmap in the region, and we intend to add resources as the business grows. We plan to expand its product range in due course, Francis added.