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(Bloomberg) -- FXCM Inc., the U.S. foreign-exchange brokerage that almost failed after the Swiss franc surged this month, was threatened mainly by large bets placed by customers overseas, the Wall Street Journal reported.
Most losses were incurred by clients at FXCM’s affiliates in London, Singapore and other international locations that weren’t subject to leverage caps imposed by U.S. authorities, the newspaper said, citing unidentified people familiar with regulators’ review of the firm.
The U.S. accounted for only 13 percent of retail trading at FXCM last year, as the firm handled more business in Europe and China, according to its website. FXCM took a $300 million lifeline from Leucadia National Corp. after saying it faced a capital shortfall because of client losses on the Swiss central bank’s decision to let the franc trade freely against the euro.
Jaclyn Klein, a spokeswoman for New York-based FXCM, declined to comment on which customers lost money. Spokesmen for the National Futures Association and Commodity Futures Trading Commission didn’t immediately respond to messages seeking comment outside regular business hours.
--With assistance from Silla Brush in Washington.
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