The number of financial intermediaries in Russia, forex brokers included, saw their combined number of customers increasing by 6.3% in the first half of 2016, the Central Bank of Russia (CBR) said in a notice issued last week. The growth was mostly attributed to brokers’ customers – resident individuals with active customers now accounting for 12-13%.
The majority, or 79%, of all non-bank financial institutions (NFIs) in Russia were owned by owned by Russian residents in the six months under review. NFIs had return on assets indicators of 1.6% and return on equity indicators of 8.9%, exceeding those of entities in the banking sector which registered values of 0.9% and 8.0%, respectively.
During the first six months of the year, the balance sheets of NFIs became more liquid as the share of short-term investments in the asset structure shrank to 30% and that of money resources went up to 19%. A greater part of the overall turnover in the securities market in the January-June period was represented with the repos of financial intermediaries, or credit institutions (Cis). In the Russian market, NFIs are the main suppliers of shares, while financial intermediaries – credit institutions are the main suppliers of bonds.
The CBR is Russia’s financial mega-regulator which oversees the banking and all other financial markets in the country. Forex services are regulated in the country since the beginning of 2016 and the regulation of binary options is to be decided on by the end of 2017. In addition, the central bank also announced it has undertaken steps to regulate the crowdfunding market, too.