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Media Centre

Leading wholesale broker launches under new brand: AUSIEX

21 JUNE 2021

Former CommSec Adviser Services team looks to build on $55.25 billion trading footprint under new Nomura Research Institute (NRI) ownership

Launches landmark insights report showing online trading accelerating despite COVID

SYDNEY: Equities trading in Australia is undergoing a major transformation as younger Australians, women and financial advisers re-evaluate the opportunities to leverage wealth through the sharemarket during a dramatic pandemic year, according to leading wholesale broker, AUSIEX.

The Australian Investment Exchange (AUSIEX) has launched its new-look brand and service offering to the market following its divestment last month.

The organisation, the former wholesale arm of CBA's leading broking business CommSec, provides technology and trading services to over 4,000 financial advisers, 800 dealer groups and five of Australia's top 10 wealth platforms – annually trading $55.25 billion of the total $3 trillion Australian market.

As part of its official launch, AUSIEX has released a landmark report Australia's Trading Transformation, using proprietary trading data from November 2019 to March 2021 to highlight transformational trends in equities trading across Australian investors.

Key observations include:

  • A clear COVID effect with overall equities trading up 54% across self-directed and advised.
  • Young investors flocked to the market. Pre-COVID, only 1% of self-directed clients were under 25. This increased by 250% by March 2021. There was another significant shift towards these younger self-directed investors during the lockdown period, with a 5% increase in new Millennial clients and a slight increase in Generation Z.
  • Self-directed investors also embraced the Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) sector compared with other investor segments, including advised sectors. It appears this demand also drove a rapid surge in stock share prices for Afterpay and Zip.
  • New female advised clients now outnumber men. The proportion of new advised female clients has risen to 52% as of March 2021 from 47.3% in November 2019.
  • A push into ESG investments across all investor segments.
  • A substantial rise in ETF investing across advised and self-directed segments.
  • The survey period also cemented the central role ETFs now play with advisers looking to reposition client portfolios in difficult markets and gain thematic exposures. Around 28% of new investment accounts opened during the lockdown period (March-November 2020) invested in ETFs.

AUSIEX Chief Executive Officer, Eric Blewitt, said writers of financial history would mark 2020 as a pivotal year for trading.

"COVID-19 gave people more personal time, and this accelerated the adoption of online trading by five to 10 years," Mr Blewitt said.

"Our observations of the market activity last year led us to produce this paper – both to analyse activity based on our proprietary data and provide our insights into what these developments mean for the future of trading in Australia."

Trading trends to drive innovation

Mr Blewitt said the past year had been a tale of two different trading strategies with a skew towards short-term trading by self-directed investors while advisers – whether trading directly with AUSIEX or through a platform – appeared to stick to their strategies.

"This step-change and the resulting behaviours will require the industry to continue to change and adapt. As an engine that drives share trading in this country, AUSIEX aims to partner with financial institutions, intermediaries, advisers and industry participants as they navigate this new and expanded market," Mr Blewitt said.

The big trends highlighted in the landmark report is part of an evolving market. It is not the first market evolution that AUSIEX has seen, having provided trading solutions for over 25 years.

"With the foundations of our business stretching back to 1994, we bring together some of the most experienced names in wholesale broking," Mr Blewit said.

He said AUSIEX's vision was to be the leading provider of integrated trading and asset administration solutions in Australia.

"Now, as a stand-alone entity under the new ownership of NRI, we are positioning our business to capture the enormous opportunities we foresee in the Australian wholesale trading market in the coming years. This includes the need for greater agility as pricing, cost and industry structures evolve, and market disruptors continue to arrive."

* Australia's Trading Transformation can be found on the AUSIEX website.

About AUSIEX

With over 25 years of experience in the local market and the backing of a multinational trading technology powerhouse, AUSIEX combines deep expertise with trusted and reliable technology to deliver trading solutions for financial institutions, intermediaries, advisers and industry participants.

Owned by Nomura Research Institute (NRI), AUSIEX specialises in equities execution, clearing and settlement services and equities administration for the wholesale market.

As one of Australia's leading providers of trading solutions, AUSIEX has used its scale, expertise and heritage to deliver value for advisers, brokers, many large institutions and tens of thousands of their clients by seamlessly connecting them to markets.

Disclaimer: This information has been prepared by Australian Investment Exchange Limited (AUSIEX) ABN 71 076 515 930 AFSL 241400, a Market Participant of ASX Limited and Cboe Australia Pty Ltd, a Clearing Participant of ASX Clear Pty Limited and a Settlement Participant of ASX Settlement Pty Limited. Share Trading is a service provided by AUSIEX.