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Taking the risk out of int'l money transfers

Taking the risk out of int'l money transfers

Category: Money

Updated: 15/11/2013
First Published: 15/11/2013

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

Transferring money internationally can be a financially stressful time, with fluctuating exchange rates making it more of a gamble than many would like. But, the risk of falling rates and being left with a significantly reduced sum at the other end can be managed by taking a careful, informed approach.

Exchange rates can be affected by anything from political uncertainty to economic confidence, with currencies feeling the brunt of wider confusion. That's why consumers should always try to stay ahead of the game to mitigate risk – staying on top of currency rate movements can ensure they know when would be the right time to make the transfer, for example, and monitoring wider market movements can always help.

Forward contracts could be another option. They give consumers the option to lock into the current exchange rate and pay a deposit, but they won't have to make the actual transfer for up to two years ahead. This method could be a great option for those involved in overseas property purchase where even a small change in rates could have a huge impact, or for those who have regular overseas payments to make and want future certainty.

It may sound like a lot of effort, but with international money transfer often involving large sums of money it makes sense to go about things with eyes firmly open.

Simplicity counts for a lot too, which perhaps explains why the mobile phone transfer market is becoming an increasingly lucrative industry – according to Juniper Research the value of international money transfers made via mobile phone platforms is set to top $10 billion by the end of the year, but the sheer scale and ease of use means it's even more important for those involved go about it the right way.

The key is to get independent advice from a currency exchange specialist. In many cases international money transfers can be a huge financial undertaking and getting it right could mean the difference between being able to buy that overseas property or needing to walk away, so consumers are being urged to not leave it to chance.

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