The reason why FXTM decided to suspend its retail business happens to be quite straightforward. The Cypriot entity sent emails to clients explaining that as of this date it will provide its services in the EEA region exclusively for professional clients and institutional traders.
In light of internal business decisions to focus on other markets and grow their B2B operations, many forex brokers, like Exness, decided to close the retail business in EU/EEA, including the UK.
One of the reasons stated for the exclusive focus on the institutional business is the recent changes in the regulatory environment. Indeed, the retail FX market in Europe is becoming relatively challenging, which is why many brokers are looking into new opportunities in the wholesale liquidity and clearing market.
FXTM’s EU website also dropped the option of onboarding retail traders and is now only taking professional clients.
ESMA’s restrictions have already had a more severe impact than most retail brokers anticipated, though it was offset by a surge in crypto volumes over the past two years. For instance, the European regulator has banned any welcome bonuses or other incentives that encourage clients to trade CFDs. This was problematic for many firms who often rely on such bonuses and high leverage as a means of attracting clients.