BTR, Tradex Swiss AG and Tradex Group: A tangled web of retail FX
By Helen Avery
On Monday this week, a small FX trading shop, Boston Trading and Research (BTR), sent an email to clients saying it had suspended trading due to losses (see below).
According to insiders, the firm's losses were racked up after its president and head trader, Devrim Akyil, who apparently managed the $40 million BTR had in its accounts, decided in early August that the dollar had fallen far enough. He went long EUR/USD and cable, but his timing was awful – the dollar index posted its biggest monthly gain since October 1992. Akyil's punt had resulted in the loss of 90% of clients' money by early September. This was despite risk systems supposedly in place to limit drawdowns from 30%.
Clients have not been told the full extent of their losses. Insiders say Akyil, who was the co-founder of BTR, is promising 10 cents back on the dollar or the chance to leave the money with him and let him try and make good. Akyil claims to have been something of a star trader. According to his publicity, he was initially so successful that he retired at 27 years old.
BTR claims he produced returns of around 5% a month for its 20-month trading record.