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Inexpensive UK Platforms for Buying Overseas Shares

Financial discussion for any financial queries for Expats
edwills46
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Inexpensive UK Platforms for Buying Overseas Shares

#261311

Postby edwills46 » October 31st, 2019, 3:08 pm

I have the possible need to invest such that my eventual payout is protected against changes in the GBP CAD rate because I want to give a known amount of Canadian dollars to grandchildren for college education at points in' time between 4 and 8 years hence. So I would invest in something Canadian, liquid and non-volatile in my UK dealing account, cashing in parts as needed back into pounds and then transferring the amounts by low cost transfer agents, e.g. Western Union. However, the FX charges levied by the platform brokers I know of - AJ Bell and Hargreaves - would be at least 0.5%; probably more like GBP750 if I interpret their charge rates correctly. Maybe OK for longer term growth investors; not so good for these purposes.

Does anybody know of a way of obtaining cheaper FX conversions?

Or of an effective way of achieving the desired ends?

Thanks, Ed

Alaric
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Re: Inexpensive UK Platforms for Buying Overseas Shares

#261323

Postby Alaric » October 31st, 2019, 3:51 pm

edwills46 wrote:
Does anybody know of a way of obtaining cheaper FX conversions?

Or of an effective way of achieving the desired ends?


You might want to look at Interactive Investor. In a Dealing Account they allow conversions between currencies and that includes Canadian dollars. I suspect, but don't know for sure, that if you had a Canadian Dollar bank account, that you could link the trading account to it and make direct transfers. That way you only get an exchange rate hit once, on the initial conversion from Sterling.

ReallyVeryFoolish
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Re: Inexpensive UK Platforms for Buying Overseas Shares

#261589

Postby ReallyVeryFoolish » November 2nd, 2019, 4:29 am

The most cost effective way I know of moving currency around between the family (and others too should you wish, of course) is via a Revolut card. Solid FX rates on major currencies and a pretty simple mobile phone app along side the card(s) is all you need. HTH.

edwills46
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Re: Inexpensive UK Platforms for Buying Overseas Shares

#262058

Postby edwills46 » November 4th, 2019, 4:54 pm

Thank you both for the info.
Here's my feedback ...
Revolut sounds interesting. My policy has been that I never use my mobile phone for anything where I am concerned about security. Sounds like I need to get up with the times.
As regards Interactive, their Multi-currency accounts give you the spot rate, but there is still an additional fee of 0.25% - 0.5%. Sounds a touch better than HL and AJBell.

However, all this has become somewhat moot because HL tell me the law since 2018 has been that you can't buy overseas ETFs and / or packaged financial products unless they come with appropriate documentation - an acceptable KIID is what I understand that means. This disqualifies the Vanguard and iShares Canada ETFs I was considering (I would trust them but the govt apparently doesn't).
That's how I understood it, anyway.
Thanks, Ed

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Re: Inexpensive UK Platforms for Buying Overseas Shares

#266123

Postby DiamondEcho » November 21st, 2019, 9:04 pm

I've used Interactive Brokers for both UK and foreign holdings, FX on the latter currency, and then wiring out funds in various currencies. Their various fees/spreads seemed very competitive at the time.
But note wires in/out can only be done via your primary 'nominated' bank account, otherwise you need pukka certified 'ID' like 'lawyers certs' etc. But if you'd be ok income coming via yourself, and then from you to Revolut/Transferwise and back out it's less of an issue.


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