Since the Saxo Modern Wealth Management platform for UK long-term investors is rather different to the Saxo Bank platform, it now has its own entry in the broker directory. There are also a few updates to the details of the service from the summary when it first launched in April 2012.
- Saxo has confirmed that the currency conversion fee is 0.5% over interbank rates, not 1.5%, and that this is being waived until mid 2013. Am not sure if this was an error in the original charges sheet or a decision to bring it down to match the standard Saxo Bank rates. Regardless, it is now far more competitive, making its ISA (which is only available through Modern Wealth Management rather than the Saxo Bank service) look like one of the more cost-effective ones for holding foreign stocks.
- The markets currently available through Modern Wealth Management are Belgium, France, Germany, Netherlands, Spain, UK and USA, which is notably narrower than the Saxo Bank platform.
- One nuance on investor protection is that a UK account with Saxo Bank taken out through FSA-authorised Saxo Capital Markets is covered by UK regulations and the UK Financial Services Compensation Scheme, whereas Modern Wealth Management is operated by Saxo Bank A/S and covered by the Danish Guarantee Fund for Depositors and Investors [PDF]. Denmark is a safe jurisdiction and so this by itself is no cause for concern – and, for the avoidance of doubt, Saxo is doing nothing wrong here and makes it very clear on the site who the relevant regulator is. However, when dealing with cross-border firms, investors should always be sure they understand which rules and compensation limits apply to their account.
- On a related point, Saxo no longer has a minimum deposit for Saxo Classic accounts under the Saxo Bank platform – previously, it was £6,500 for UK-registered clients. Limits still seem to be in place for clients in some other countries.