More choice for expats trading currencies as limits are expanded and ranges extended

by Ray Clancy on June 28, 2010

A leading UK based currency broker has expanded its on-line money transfer facilities to include 14 additional currencies.

HiFX is also allowing debit card, credit card, and bank account to bank account transfers from overseas accounts into the UK with the ability to exchange up to £70,000 on-line, a new limit.

The online service could save the 5.5 million British expats living or working abroad over £1.65 billion a year on their international money transfers, it claims.

With the recent volatile performance of Sterling and banks increasing their margins on international money transfers to buffer the extreme currency volatility, Brits with financial interests abroad are now more than ever looking for ways to save money when sending money from the UK, a spokesman said.

‘By continuing to develop our online money transfer service we are able to offer people a convenient way of accessing the same discounted online rates as we are able to offer for larger sums over the phone. By adding 14 new currencies to our service we hope to make the task of transferring money abroad ever easier,’ said Mark Bodega, Director at HiFX.

The updated HiFX Online offers on average savings of 3% of the amount transferred when compared to high street banks and other international transfer providers such as PayPal and Western Union, he added.

He explained that HiFX customers can now transfer money to and from Sterling online by specifying either the amount they want to send in their ‘home’ currency or the amount that must be received in the overseas currency.

As well as Euro, US Dollar, Canadian Dollar, Australian Dollar and NZ Dollar customers can now buy and sell fourteen new currencies; Singapore Dollar, Swiss Franc, Thai Baht, Swedish Krona, Mexican Peso, Polish Zloty, UAE Dirham, Norwegian Krone, South African Rand, Hungarian Forint, Danish Krone, Czech Koruna, Hong Kong Dollar and Japanese Yen.

The extended service comes as Sterling has started performing well with the UK’s recent emergency budget being seen favourably by the markets. At the end of last week Sterling was at a five month high against a basket of other currencies and a 19 month high against the Euro.

But some experts warned that Sterling’s strength is largely on the back of negative sentiment towards the Euro. Although the pound has rallied nearly 20% since reaching a low of 1.02 Euros in December 2008, it still remains well below the 1.5 level that it traded around in the years prior to the 2007 credit crunch.

The markets are still fearful over a European debt crisis that is already engulfing Mediterranean governments and risks triggering a full-blown banking crisis across the continent.

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