On 2 October 2018, the Treasurer, the Hon Josh Frydenberg MP, issued a notice approving the ACCC to hold an inquiry into the supply of foreign currency conversion services (FX services) in Australia.
An issues paper for the inquiry was released on 2 October 2018, and was closed to submissions on 22 October 2018. A questionnaire was also available for consumers and small businesses, which closed on 22 October 2018.
The ACCC received 63 written submissions and 147 questionnaire responses. See submissions received for further details.
On 2 September 2019, the ACCC released a final report for its inquiry into foreign currency conversion services.
The final report for the inquiry was provided to the Treasurer on 31 July 2019. The report highlights important competition and consumer issues and makes recommendations to address them. The report includes a guide that contains information and advice for consumers using FX services. The guide is available at: Buying & sending foreign money.
In 2016, Australians sent around $8.8 billion overseas. The World Bank has found that the cost of sending money from Australia is significantly higher than both the G20 average and the global average cost. Australia was the third most expensive G20 country to send money from.
Through this inquiry, the ACCC examined the pricing of foreign currency conversion services in Australia and evaluated whether there are impediments to effective price competition in the sector.
The inquiry involved broad consultation and stakeholder engagement, including:
- seeking feedback in response to an issues paper
- targeted consultation with industry participants, regulators and consumer groups, and
- obtaining specific information from industry participants.
A report was delivered to the Treasurer by 31 July 2019.