As some of you may know, I like to trade the financial markets. Betfair used to offer limited markets on their standard platform and I looked for It last week. What I found was Tradefair Spreads. Now I know that the Betfair financial markets were a little sparse, and liquidity was somewhat stagnant, I never realised that they’d removed It completely. To fill the gap, they’ve taken the unprecedented move to start Tradefair.
This would appear to be a completely different direction for Betfair, as spread betting Is a completely different beast to that of sports betting. For those of you unfamiliar with spread betting, you can buy or sell bets In a way similar to Betfair. What we find Is that the gap between the buy and sell price Is larger than In a Betfair market. That gap Is called the Spread, hence the name “Spread Betting”. This margin Is what the firm keep as their operating costs.
Unlike a traditional stock broker, where they charge a fixed fee for buying and selling shares, the spread firms just take the spread. And unlike traditional stock brokers, spread betting Is completely tax free, as It’s betting.
What do I think?
I’ve go to be honest here, the Tradefair site just gives the Impression that It’s unfinished. I’m a member of most spread betting companies currently available, and Tradefair Is the most basic offering available. Of course, that doesn’t mean that It’s not good, It’s just that It’s not as refined as say IG Index. I trade Options, and Tradefair don’t even offer them. That’s why I’d stick to IG Index, I don’t even like City Index as they have a similar clunky feel to Tradefair, despite offering Options.
Tradefair also lets Itself down with their limited charts. Again It just feels like Its all been thrown together really quickly, with little thought given to the actual trader. Having done my research, It appears that Tradefair enticed early customers with a £100 deposit bonus. This In my opinion would be the only reason to open an account with Tradefair. Unfortunately this offer has long since been withdrawn.
I checked the overnight spread on the FTSE 100 Index during the week, and the spread was a colossal 6 points. Obviously this was out of hours, but that’s a huge Increase from their stated, “from 1 point”, and would render many strategies unworkable long term.
I can only guess that Tradefair are trying to lure sports bettors away from Betfair, and by offering 1200 different markets to trade, there’s something for everyone. Having looked at their site, apart from just Indices and Commodities, they also offer Bonds, Equities, Interst rates and Forex markets. All of these can be traded through the same account, which Is somewhat scary. Most Brokers/Spread firms will Investigate you experience trading all manner of products, and tend to limit access to those markets that you know. Having access to all markets could be risky.
In Tradefairs defence, they do offer a dummy account where you can trial your methods prior to using real money, and they do have a rudimentry educational section to their site.
I’m not sure how stable the Tradefair site Is compared to Betfair, but that Is certainly a concern. The constant outages at Betfair, if transferred to Tradefair could result In awful losses if daytrading. That’s further reason to consider whether or not Tradefair Is a true player In the financial markets. It’s just my opinion, but I doubt It!
There are better players in the Spreadbetting market place, and I’d advise anyone to use those as a starting point. If It takes 5 days to get a query resolved at Betfair, then Is Tradefair going to fair any better? Well, I’m afraid they won’t get the chance, with my money at least….