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Money exchange

Money exchange

Old Jan 27th 2004, 6:25 am
  #1  
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Default Money exchange

I wonder if any of you can help me with another question.

Having finally sold my house in the UK, I want to transfer the proceeds to my bank account in the US.

Whilst not huge, the sum of money is enough to make small variations in the exchange rate add up to real figures.

My question is, does anyone here have experience of the various currency brokers available online (or offline for that matter)? There are clearly some reputable ones, but it's near impossible to get a sense of how their exchange rates compare to the rate I'd get just letting NatWest wire the money to me.

I've looked at the currency brokerage services offered by www.xe.com and www.currencies4less.com, and they both have a similar setup, with "no fee" conversions (they take their cut from the "spread" on the conversion transaction). What I'd like to have is a recommendation from someone who's done this before!

Any advice would be most appreciated!
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Old Jan 27th 2004, 11:20 am
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Think this was discussed in the thread about the $ £ exchange rate a couple of weeks ago, so you could look there
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Old Jan 27th 2004, 11:31 am
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Default Re: Money exchange

Dont know any brokers but a tip is to get a rate through the Business channels opposed to tourist as often you get a higher rate. Know a guy who does it this way and he makes a very good living from it.....




Originally posted by dbj1000
I wonder if any of you can help me with another question.

Having finally sold my house in the UK, I want to transfer the proceeds to my bank account in the US.

Whilst not huge, the sum of money is enough to make small variations in the exchange rate add up to real figures.

My question is, does anyone here have experience of the various currency brokers available online (or offline for that matter)? There are clearly some reputable ones, but it's near impossible to get a sense of how their exchange rates compare to the rate I'd get just letting NatWest wire the money to me.

I've looked at the currency brokerage services offered by www.xe.com and www.currencies4less.com, and they both have a similar setup, with "no fee" conversions (they take their cut from the "spread" on the conversion transaction). What I'd like to have is a recommendation from someone who's done this before!

Any advice would be most appreciated!
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Old Jan 27th 2004, 12:44 pm
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Expat_Wannabe, you're right that it was discussed at length before. The thing is, nobody answered the question

Although there was much discussion of the economy, and what causes exchange rates to change and things like that, no message that I could find actually said HOW people had transferred money, except by using their UK Bank.

I don't really know what you mean by getting a rate "through the Business channels", dolphingirl. If you mean getting a "business" rate through a bank or a broker, that's exactly what I'm having trouble finding information on. When I phone my bank the persist in denying any knowlege of any exchange rate other than that day's quoted tourist rate
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Old Jan 27th 2004, 12:47 pm
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http://www.citibank.co.uk/uk/

open a Pound and Dollar account ..you can switch with ease between the Two
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Old Jan 27th 2004, 12:50 pm
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There are two rates. The commerical rate and the tourist rate. You can't "fix" a rate but if it's a very large sum you should be able to negotiate the commerical rate. I've spoken to my bank in the US and they're doing it for me. If you can't get anywhere with the person on the phone, go into the bank and ask to speak to someone in higher authority.
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Old Jan 27th 2004, 5:19 pm
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i use XE.com probably twice a month for the last 18 months

really reliable - the only time a transfer took longer than 3-4 days was when i paid to the wrong account

also, the rate you get is the one you accept when you iniate the transaction - so you know exactly how much you will be getting
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Old Jan 27th 2004, 5:52 pm
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What rate do Citibank give for transferring from the £ account to the $ account?

I thought about opening a citibank $ and £ account, but couldn't find any info on this - I emailed their customer service dept to ask - and never got a reply
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Old Jan 27th 2004, 6:12 pm
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This may sound like a stupid question, but I also have a bit of money that will make a bit of difference via tourist or bank rate exchanges, and I'd like to know with XE.com, is it just as simple as signing up and giving them a bank account number from your UK account and an account number here in the US where you wish the money to be transfered?.
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Old Jan 28th 2004, 1:31 am
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Originally posted by sibsie
There are two rates. The commerical rate and the tourist rate. You can't "fix" a rate but if it's a very large sum you should be able to negotiate the commerical rate. I've spoken to my bank in the US and they're doing it for me. If you can't get anywhere with the person on the phone, go into the bank and ask to speak to someone in higher authority.
Sibsie is absolutely correct. Ask for the "wholesale" or "market" rate and you'll get probably 2-3¢ more for each £. Any High Street bank in the UK will give you a very similar rate at any moment in time (the wholesale rate varies by the second, and the bank branch has to phone their currency dealers to get the current price for which ever currency you are wanting to buy.

If the clerk you are speaking to doesn't understand "wholesale" or "market" rate ask for the manager or supervisor as you should remember that substantial foreign currency exchange transactions are still relatively unusual in the branch banking world.
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Old Jan 28th 2004, 3:05 am
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Thank you Pulaski!

That's exactly the information I needed. We had been about to transfer our house proceeds at NatWest's "tourist" rate, given that the whole currency brokerage business looked to time-consuming and complex. At least now I feel that we'll get the best rate the a high street bank can offer.

Thanks again.
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Old Jan 28th 2004, 2:06 pm
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Just as an add on to this: I know it is affected by many different things, and I know that it is almost impossible to predict, but within the next 2-3 months I will need to move money from the US back to the UK to pay off some debts. Does anyone have any inside track on when the dollar might get a bit stronger against the pound? At present I would have to send $2 for every 1 pound of debt, instead of the usual $1.50. Maybe the upcoming elections will affect it somehow?

Conversely, my parents are coming over to visit me in May, and will be exchanging their pounds to dollars this week to get the best possible rate, so I guess it is all swings and roundabouts, but none of them help me with the couple of grand (sterling) that I owe Barclaycard.

Best
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Old Jan 28th 2004, 3:14 pm
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Default Re: Money exchange

This site may be of help to you.

http://www.international-money-trans...transfers.html

Mercedes.
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Old Jan 29th 2004, 12:14 am
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Originally posted by GJB
Just as an add on to this: I know it is affected by many different things, and I know that it is almost impossible to predict, but within the next 2-3 months I will need to move money from the US back to the UK to pay off some debts. Does anyone have any inside track on when the dollar might get a bit stronger against the pound? At present I would have to send $2 for every 1 pound of debt, instead of the usual $1.50. Maybe the upcoming elections will affect it somehow?

Conversely, my parents are coming over to visit me in May, and will be exchanging their pounds to dollars this week to get the best possible rate, so I guess it is all swings and roundabouts, but none of them help me with the couple of grand (sterling) that I owe Barclaycard.

Best
GJB
Firstly I doubt that the dollar with strengthen any time soon - it is increasingly looking like part of the current economic strategy is to allow the dollar to fall in value, making imports expensive and export cheaper, both of which should have a positive effect on the US economy. I expect to see the dollar fall to $2/£ before it sees $1.60/£1 again.

Secondly, you can at least save yourself the buy-sell spread and the comission by funding your parent's visit to the US at the published (mid) rate when they are here (give 'em a bundle of cash when they arrive) and then have them pay the GBP equivalent into your account, or against your loan, in the UK. You will both be winners, and deprive the banks of a little of their profit!
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Old Jan 29th 2004, 6:44 am
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Default Re: Money exchange

Originally posted by Mercedes
This site may be of help to you.

http://www.international-money-trans...transfers.html

Mercedes.
I just posted some more information about that site in the Marketplace section of the forums.

Paul Stewart-Day
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