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Market environment and tax law cause trading in CFDs to decline further

In the third quarter, trading in contracts for differences in Germany again recorded a decline. The CFD Association sees the effects of tax loss offsetting in particular as the cause. More and more CFD investors are also contacting the association about this.

Frankfurt, 19. December 2022- Investor caution in the German market for contracts for difference (CFDs) continues in the third quarter of 2022. This is the result of the data collection for the months from July to September 2022, which CFIN - Research Center for Financial Services conducted for the Contracts for Difference Verband e.V. (CFD Association). Although the significant decline of the second quarter (-43% compared to Q1) in trading volumes with CFDs has been slowed down recently. Nevertheless, the minus in the third quarter increased by another 9.5% (compared to Q2). This means that the latest quarter of the year, in which a total volume of 326.6 billion euros was traded in contracts for differences, represents the weakest quarter in the past three years. In the same quarter last year, the volume had still been 569 billion euros, and in the first quarter of this year had even reached a new record of 637 billion euros.

In contrast to trading volumes, the number of accounts increased slightly (+0.9%) in the latest quarter of the year. At the same time, the number of trades increased significantly (from 9.0 million by 18% to 10.7 million). However, since at the same time the volume per transaction decreased by 23%, the bottom line is a significant slump.

"Against the backdrop of the current tense macroeconomic environment, customers tend to act more cautiously. However, this is only part of the explanation for this negative trend: there are many indications that the damaging effects of the tax loss offset restriction are having a greater impact here," explains Stefan Armbruster, Chairman of the CFD Association. That is also insofar obvious, as the federation "since September numerous entries over the form for contact of the federation web page of investors concerned received", so Stefan Armbruster further.

Before this background the CFD federation prepares up-to-date the company of a sample complaint procedure, which is to clarify the so far open constitutional questions to the loss setting-off restriction. Investors can inform about it on the federation Website under "It is becoming clear that the restriction on loss offsetting introduced by the Annual Tax Act is having precisely the opposite effect to that which should be in the interests of a federal government: This regulation hinders a self-responsible private wealth accumulation of citizens, moreover it makes the preparation of the tax return substantially more complex - this practice must have an end", says Stefan Armbruster.

How well customers can react to market developments with their CFD trading - especially in turbulent times like the current ones -, trading activities in CFDs on certain underlyings have shown particularly clearly in the latest quarter. The euro/US dollar currency pair, for example, has become very attractive to CFD traders due to its fall below parity, as have oil and gas CFDs due to the high volatility caused by the energy crisis: the share of trades with EUR/USD in the volume of all transactions with foreign exchange CFDs has increased by around 22 percentage points to almost 62 percent compared to the same quarter last year; within the commodities sector, the share of CFD transactions on energy stocks - Brent, WTI, gasoline, natural gas and heating oil - even increased from around 15 percent to 81 percent.

The key figures of the year-on-year comparison are based on a data survey commissioned by the Contracts for Difference Verband e.V. The survey relates to the German market and to customers based in Germany. To calculate the total market, data was collected from the participating companies Comdirect Bank, Consorsbank (BNPP), flatexDEGIRO, onvista bank, IG, S Broker, GBE brokers, WH Selfinvest and ViTrade.

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The CFD Association is the central lobby group for financial service providers specializing in contracts for difference (CFD) in Germany and the point of contact for investors on this topic. Its member companies represent a large part of the overall German market. The association is committed to transparent CFD trading and high investor protection and regulatory standards in Germany. All members hold a BaFin license or are regulated by BaFin.

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