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19
Feb

Trading internationally – a few points to keep in mind

Expanding abroad can be a complex task and it’s easy to pay too much or unnecessarily lose money. To help you tackle your financial challenges we’ve prepared this checklist

 

FOREIGN EXCHANGE

 

When you exchange currencies, you’ll want a good exchange rate and low or no fees. Remember it’s not just banks that provide this type of service. There are fintech and other currency specialists out there that may offer you better terms, faster transactions and enhanced services.

 

It’s common to use spot trades to execute foreign exchange transactions. As the name suggests, a spot trade typically is a currency exchange that is done “on the spot”, as opposed to at a future date.

 

MARKET VOLATILITY

 

Volatility is something you need to bear in mind when doing business in more than one currency. It can, and is highly likely to, affect most currency pairs.

 

While in the past it was more the so-called “exotics”, the emerging market currencies, where fluctuations hit, it’s now potentially any currency. In fact, some of the major currencies have been more volatile than some emerging market currencies.

 

CURRENCY RISK MANAGEMENT

 

When the currency markets move against you your margins could be affected. Dealing with foreign currencies, however, doesn’t need to be unpredictable. That is why businesses increasingly put currency risk management high up their agenda.

 

An effective risk management strategy is hedging. What this means is, basically, that you can eliminate volatility risk by pre-purchasing or selling a currency. So if rates change you won’t be affected. For how long you can lock in your exchange rate depends on your financial services provider. With Ebury it’s up to three years.

 

CURRENCY CARDS

 

If you need to give your employees money to travel and complete projects overseas or you need to distribute funds to employees or partners in other countries, prepaid currency cards may be a solution. They are safer than cash, can be used in many countries all over the world and they provide you with transaction details.

 

What’s more, when using Currency Hedger’s prepaid card solution you’ll also get access to our state-of-the-art online platform. It enables you to distribute funds to your beneficiaries’ cards and, at the same time, your head office can instantly see how the beneficiaries spend funds on the ground. With our card solutions you have access to competitive exchange rates in 250 countries around the world.

 

USING LOCAL CURRENCY AND TRADE FINANCE TO NEGOTIATE BETTER DEALS WITH SUPPLIERS

 

Often companies use currencies such as the US Dollar to settle international invoices. Your supplier may quote you a Dollar price, which would typically include a mark-up to cover the cost of foreign exchange and the exchange rate risk. If you offer to pay suppliers in their local currencies you may be able to negotiate a discount.

 

Suppliers will sometimes also offer discounts if you buy larger quantities. Consider finance from a provider such as Currency Hedger to enable you to bulk buy and secure discounts. This should outweigh the trade finance cost.

 

UPFRONT PAYMENTS HELP BUILD RELATIONSHIPS

 

Suppliers often ask for money upfront before they start work and the balancing payment on confirmed shipping to your agents. Currency Hedger cannot only help you with finance to trade but as a currency specialist we can also pay your suppliers in their local currencies, all at very competitive rates

 

To discuss how tailored currency services and flexible business funding can support your business, contact our team.

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