Oanda enters burgeoning FX social networking sector
Oanda, the retail foreign exchange provider, has launched fxUnity, the latest entrant to the burgeoning market for FX social networking sites.
Oanda joins incumbents eToro and IBFX as the only FX trading firms that operate their own proprietary social networks. Other social networking sites, such as Currensee, FX Junction and the recently launched Tradeo, are not trading platforms but enable traders to interact with one another, independent of their chosen brokers. As retail platforms increasingly seek to provide users with a more sophisticated and institutional experience, Oanda’s new platform has been consciously developed with simplicity in mind.
Oanda say the fxUnity platform aims to bring FX trading and social networking to a target market with relatively little experience in foreign exchange trading.
As such it does not have the same depth of functionality as its existing fxTrade platform, which offers advanced charting technology, analytics and currency-focused news streams.
“With a different client base in mind, we’ve really tried to slim down the trading interface to make it more intuitive and easy to use,” says Alex Case, product manager for Oanda fxUnity. “We have integrated social networking capability so traders can share experiences, copy trade ideas and track sentiment within the fxUnity community.”
The risk limits in place on the platform are also designed with less-experienced traders in mind. The maximum deposit is $1,000, while leverage is capped at 20:1.
Perhaps the most interesting innovation is the simplification of how users can trade currencies. Instead of offering individual currency pairs, fxUnity lists each currency against a weighted basket of other currencies with the weightings assigned according to foreign trade data. “We believe this provides a more holistic and intuitive way to act on currency movements, for aspiring traders,” says Case.
Oanda's fxUnity portal
Despite an increasingly crowded market for FX social networking, Oanda is confident that its new platform caters for the next generation of FX traders wishing to trade and interact with their peers.
“We’re more than just a social-networking platform,” says Case. “We’re a full trading platform with unique instruments and unique functionality, and we intend to continually innovate and roll out new features on the platform.”
The live platform is currently available only to US-based clients. Users in other locations can open demo accounts. Full functionality is likely to be available to them within the next few months.