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  • FIRST POST
    • phil_ho
    • By phil_ho 15th Sep 18, 8:09 AM
    • 1Posts
    • 0Thanks
    phil_ho
    Problem with Currencies Direct
    • #1
    • 15th Sep 18, 8:09 AM
    Problem with Currencies Direct 15th Sep 18 at 8:09 AM
    Hi All-just wanted to alert the forum to some issues I've been having with Currencies Direct and to see if anyone has advice on how to deal with them.

    I opened an account with Currencies Direct recently after reading about transfer companies on MSE and them recommending Currencies Direct as one of the better providers.

    Account opening process was fine but I was unable to add my accounts in HSBC Jersey as Recipients in their portal. I contacted support and even though I provided full account details including IBAN and sort code they assumed the bank was in New Jersey! After they eventually added the recipients I initiated a 1,000 GBP to AED conversion and funded it with a HSBC debit card. At this point I noticed that the rate I got for this conversion was significantly worse than the illustrative one the site had given before I opened the account (as a %age off spot rate). I checked then with OFX and Currencyfair and found their rates were approx. 0.8-1% better for any given GBP to AED exchange. I raised this with Currencies Direct support and was told that their rates vary according to market conditions and I might have better luck next time. The cynic in me wonders whether they are deliberately advertising lower illustrative rates than they actually give in order to get people to open accounts.

    Anyway, I then waited patiently for the AED amount to turn up in my HSBC account. It never did. I chased Currencies Direct for 3 weeks during which time they never once contacted me proactively nor seemed to take any ownership of the problem. Unless I called or emailed them they did nothing.

    Eventually the funds were returned by their correspondent bank minus 6% fees. Reason given was beneficiary bank rejected the transfer because beneficiary details were incorrect. But I double checked the details I had given to Currencies Direct and they were correct. I did notice however that Currencies Direct had created the beneficiary as Company and not Individual as per the details I had sent them which was clearly an error on their part. I checked with HSBC also a number of times during this process and they confirmed they had not received the funds and so had not rejected the transfer.

    Currencies Direct are now saying it is not their fault and so they will send the reduce amount again to the AED account and will not cover the fees. So I am not sure how I will get the funds back and if I do it will be minus a considerable amount of fees. Their customer support has been appalling and I have serious issues about their ethics regarding their use of indicative rates in persuading people to open accounts.

    Anyone else had similar issues and have any advice on how to proceed?
Page 1
    • londoninvestor
    • By londoninvestor 15th Sep 18, 6:30 PM
    • 415 Posts
    • 340 Thanks
    londoninvestor
    • #2
    • 15th Sep 18, 6:30 PM
    • #2
    • 15th Sep 18, 6:30 PM
    Sorry for the hassle - FX always seems to need a lot of vigilance to make sure you're getting the fair deal.

    I am not a lawyer, or anything else "official", but I think you will get much more mileage from going after the fees aspect here. If you can substantiate that you supplied the correct beneficiary details and Currencies Direct mis-entered them, then you have a good case to get all your losses back that are due to fees for failed transfers.

    Write or email them stating this is a formal complaint, stating what recompense you are looking for, and that you require a formal final response.

    If that isn't satisfactory, or you don't get a response in eight weeks, the Financial Ombudsman Service is open to you.

    While they may well be self-serving with their use of "illustrative rates" and this could in principle constitute misleading advertising, you'll find it difficult to build a fact base that proves this, and difficult to prove you actually suffered a personal loss (they do tell you the rate before they agree the trade, and you are free to compare with competitors).
  • Currenciesdirect
    • #3
    • 18th Sep 18, 4:42 PM
    Currencies Direct
    • #3
    • 18th Sep 18, 4:42 PM
    Dear Phil_ho,

    Please accept our sincere apologies for the difficulties you have experienced and any distress caused to you. After a thorough investigation it is apparent that on this occasion our customer support and service fell some way short of the high standards that we and our customers expect. We take full responsibility for the mistakes made in the transfer process and will be refunding you the full amount, without any deductions for fees.

    Our currency experts are constantly watching the markets and they change rapidly, so rates can undergo large changes in a short space of time. We can assure you that the rates we provide to registered clients are extremely competitive and the rates on our online trading platform are indicative of the value that our customers will receive when they trade.

    In regards to our website, we’d like to clarify that we do not post our available exchange rates – the only rates shown on our ‘tools’ pages are interbank rates, intended to give you indications on market performance (this is clearly marked). Customers are easily able to see our exchange rate by simply logging in to their account.

    Best wishes,
    The Currencies Direct Team
    Official Company Representative
    I am the official company representative of Currencies Direct. MSE has given permission for me to post in response to queries about the company, so that I can help solve issues. You can see my name on the companies with permission to post list. I am not allowed to tout for business at all. If you believe I am please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com This does NOT imply any form of approval of my company or its products by MSE"
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