LONDON (Reuters) - The online retail currency trading platform FXPro has imposed a higher margin on trading the euro, most other major currencies and precious metals to prevent traders from taking fresh speculative positions before the Greek referendum.
“We have decided to increase margin requirements to 2 percent for trading the following instruments - euro crosses, G20 currency crosses and precious metals,” FXPro said in a statement on Friday.
“These new margin requirements will only apply to new positions that are placed between Friday, July 3, 2015, 12:00 to Monday, July 6, 2015, 02:00 (server time).”
Traders said other online trading platforms and banks are likely to follow suit, just as they did last weekend, as Greece heads for a vote that could determine its future in the euro zone.
The outcome, due late on Sunday, is likely to cause volatility and sharp swings in early trading in Asia. The measures put in place are aimed to limit possible losses.
The moves to impose higher margins follow a wide-ranging reassessment of risks this year by major players in a market which allows ordinary individuals to make highly leveraged bets on moves in dozens of currencies and commodities just by registering on websites.
A number of major players, including FXCM, IG (IGG.L) and Saxo Bank, lost millions in the 10-minute surge in the Swiss franc on Jan. 15, the biggest moves in a major currency in the era of free-floating exchange rates dating back to the 1970s.
Reporting by Anirban Nag; editing by Larry King