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XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

Old Jul 5th 2013, 4:46 pm
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Default XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

I have a smallish (40,000 STG) endowment maturing soon and plan to transfer funds from the UK to the US via XE Trade. I have used them for a number of years but always in the other direction (US -> UK). I have been very pleased and have no problem with the hurdles that make me jump - security is a good thing

I obviously want to make sure this goes through reasonably quickly and at a good rate/low fees (I am amazed at the number of ex-pat friends who say stuff like "Yeah, I use Bank XYZ because they only charge 20 quid" - without ANY awareness or mention of the exchange rate.

Anway, some questions....
  • I understand that I will initiate a transfer from my UK bank (Nat West) to XE Trade's Barclay's account. I would assume that the cost of that is minimal and happens in sterling (right)?
  • Then, XE Trade converts from pounds to dollars and transfers into my US account. So, I get the XE exchange rate (some quick research on my part indicates that this is a major factor - I would lose close to $1,000 if I let Nat West convert, compared to XE Trade). Do I have correct (XE Trade coverts)?
  • Here's my most important question. With no prompting on my part, XE Trade told me on the phone that the rate is "negotiable". Really? Has anyone done this and how would I go about this? I'm guessing a little more than "pretty please" I understand that the next tier for an improved exchange rate is at 50,000 pounds so I am not close to that. But I still want the best exchange rate

Thanks in advance.

Mark
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Old Jul 5th 2013, 4:51 pm
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Default Re: XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

When ready phone XE and get a rate, then ask them if they can improve on it. You transfer £s from Natwest to XE. Natwest allow £10,000 per day online transfer, so allow 4 days to transfer the money online and it is free. If you transfer the money all in one go, you have to arrange for Natwest to do so and it isn't a minimal charge. Used to be about £38.

Last edited by lansbury; Jul 5th 2013 at 4:54 pm.
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Old Jul 5th 2013, 5:01 pm
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Default Re: XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

Originally Posted by lansbury View Post
When ready phone XE and get a rate, then ask them if they can improve on it. You transfer £s from Natwest to XE. Natwest allow £10,000 per day online transfer, so allow 4 days to transfer the money online and it is free. If you transfer the money all in one go, you have to arrange for Natwest to do so and it isn't a minimal charge. Used to be about £38.
Thank you for the quick response. Good to know about the £10,000 limit. So, I would assume I need to somehow inform XE Trade that it's coming into their account in "chunks" and that they should wait for the final amount, right? Is this something they can handle as a matter of course (I wouldn't be initiating four UK - US transfers, for example)?

Also, I will, of course, ask for the improved rate - it will be curious to see if they improve the rate and what the improvement might be.

Thanks again.

Mark
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Old Jul 5th 2013, 5:09 pm
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Default Re: XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

I use World First but what I do is set the date I want the money sent to the US to allow me time to make the transfer. World First tell me the date they want full payment, which is the day before I want it sent to the US. If I am exchanging more than £10k I send it daily, so for £40k I would spread it over 4 days, setting up 4 transfers online with Natwest (I bank with Natwest). World First know when the full amount has been transferred, and in fact usually send the money to the US on the day they have the full payment. I assume XE is very similar.

4 transfers from Natwest to XE, one transfer from XE to your US bank.

Last edited by lansbury; Jul 5th 2013 at 5:12 pm.
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Old Jul 5th 2013, 5:42 pm
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Default Re: XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

Originally Posted by lansbury View Post
I use World First....
Interesting about World First. I was not aware of them but a quick quote on their web page suggests that they offer a better rate than XE Trade (roughly $1.49 vs. $1.47 - Nat West was $1.44 by the way!). Is that kind of difference pretty common? I was assuming that XE Trade was pretty competitive - based on the difference with Nat West, but suspect that's a really bad comparison

How quick is World First to set up? As I mentioned, I have no particularly problem with the hurdles XE Trade makes me jump but it is a fair bit of work and wonder if setting up an account with World First is worthwhile. Depends on a) whether the exchange rate differential (with XE Trade) is common and b) how much effort it is to set up.

Thanks again.

Mark
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Old Jul 5th 2013, 6:25 pm
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Default Re: XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

I thought you could contact them to make an over $10,000 transfer all in one go?
Otherwise I'll be stuck here doing 10 a day till all my house money is moved.
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Old Jul 5th 2013, 6:34 pm
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Default Re: XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

Originally Posted by Mummy in the foothills View Post
I thought you could contact them to make an over $10,000 transfer all in one go?
Otherwise I'll be stuck here doing 10 a day till all my house money is moved.
As I read it, the suggestion isn't that one CAN'T move more than 10,000 (pounds, I believe) - it's merely that Nat West happens to charge if the figure is over 10,000. That said, doing this over four days just introduces exchange rate risk which could easily be more than that charge (yes, I know it could go either way) so I am probably just going to do the whole thing in one transaction and be done with it.

Thanks.

Mark
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Old Jul 5th 2013, 8:16 pm
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Default Re: XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

Originally Posted by Mummy in the foothills View Post
I thought you could contact them to make an over $10,000 transfer all in one go?
Otherwise I'll be stuck here doing 10 a day till all my house money is moved.

You can if you mean NatWest, but an online transfer you set up yourself is free, if you contact them to transfer a bigger amount in one go they charge. Last time I did a bigger amount in one go NatWest charged £38.
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Old Jul 5th 2013, 8:21 pm
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Default Re: XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

Originally Posted by markwill890 View Post
I have a smallish (40,000 STG) endowment maturing soon and plan to transfer funds from the UK to the US via XE Trade. I have used them for a number of years but always in the other direction (US -> UK). I have been very pleased and have no problem with the hurdles that make me jump - security is a good thing

I obviously want to make sure this goes through reasonably quickly and at a good rate/low fees (I am amazed at the number of ex-pat friends who say stuff like "Yeah, I use Bank XYZ because they only charge 20 quid" - without ANY awareness or mention of the exchange rate.

Anway, some questions....
  • I understand that I will initiate a transfer from my UK bank (Nat West) to XE Trade's Barclay's account. I would assume that the cost of that is minimal and happens in sterling (right)?
  • Then, XE Trade converts from pounds to dollars and transfers into my US account. So, I get the XE exchange rate (some quick research on my part indicates that this is a major factor - I would lose close to $1,000 if I let Nat West convert, compared to XE Trade). Do I have correct (XE Trade coverts)?
  • Here's my most important question. With no prompting on my part, XE Trade told me on the phone that the rate is "negotiable". Really? Has anyone done this and how would I go about this? I'm guessing a little more than "pretty please" I understand that the next tier for an improved exchange rate is at 50,000 pounds so I am not close to that. But I still want the best exchange rate

Thanks in advance.

Mark
You do realise that the IRS will want a chunk of that?
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Old Jul 5th 2013, 8:22 pm
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Default Re: XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

Originally Posted by markwill890 View Post
As I read it, the suggestion isn't that one CAN'T move more than 10,000 (pounds, I believe) - it's merely that Nat West happens to charge if the figure is over 10,000. That said, doing this over four days just introduces exchange rate risk which could easily be more than that charge (yes, I know it could go either way) so I am probably just going to do the whole thing in one transaction and be done with it.

Thanks.

Mark
There is no exchange rate risk. You lock the rate in when you agree the contract. Just make sure the completion date of the contract leaves you enough time to transfer the money.

For example you call XE or whoever today and agree an exchange rate of say $1.48 to £1. Set the date you want the money sent to the US as next Friday (12th), that leaves you Monday to Thursday to transfer the money in £10,000 amounts. Do not count the day you agree the contract as a day to transfer the money in case the time difference to the UK catches you out, and it is after normal banking hours in the UK for that day.
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Old Jul 5th 2013, 8:23 pm
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Default Re: XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

Originally Posted by lansbury View Post
You can if you mean NatWest, but an online transfer you set up yourself is free, if you contact them to transfer a bigger amount in one go they charge. Last time I did a bigger amount in one go NatWest charged £38.
I meant Xe sorry. I think I read on the site something about contacting them for amounts over $10,000. Has anyone sent over 10 in one go with Xe?
My US bank says they don't have a limit so long as the money is in the account and it goes to Barclays in UK.
If I'm getting charged £39 I may as well do a bank to bank wire transfer my bank charges $45 for an international one.
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Old Jul 5th 2013, 8:38 pm
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Default Re: XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

I believe you can arrange for XE to instigate the transfer from your bank account, but it is limited to the amount the bank allows for "instant" transfer. Never done it that way myself as I prefer to set up the transfer. But I think you are talking about sending dollars to the UK, which is different to what the OP is doing. UK banks have a limit on the same day (instant) transfers you can set up online

Last edited by lansbury; Jul 5th 2013 at 8:41 pm.
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Old Jul 5th 2013, 8:41 pm
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Default Re: XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

Originally Posted by lansbury View Post
I believe you can arrange for XE to instigate the transfer from your bank account, but it is limited to the amount the bank allows for "instant" transfer. Never done it that way myself as I prefer to set up the transfer.
I've never done it that way. It all gets so confusing.
Still not sure whether to send out house money with Xe or an international transfer direct bank to bank.
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Old Jul 5th 2013, 8:44 pm
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Default Re: XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

Originally Posted by Mummy in the foothills View Post
I've never done it that way. It all gets so confusing.
Still not sure whether to send out house money with Xe or an international transfer direct bank to bank.
Use XE or one of the other brokers. Bank to bank will get you a worse exchange rate and with a large sum it can make quite a difference.
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Old Jul 5th 2013, 8:59 pm
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Default Re: XETrade - UK -> US process and rate negotiation

Originally Posted by lansbury View Post
Use XE or one of the other brokers. Bank to bank will get you a worse exchange rate and with a large sum it can make quite a difference.
Thanks.
I need to sign up with the other one, World something? see what their rates are like too.
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