Rawiri was a regular CFD (contracts for difference) trader.
In February 2022, he received an error message when he tried to close one of his orders. The trading platform investigated the order, and they established there was an issue with their system which meant the order did not close. The trading platform remedied the situation by manually closing the order at the price Rawiri had requested.
In early March 2022, Rawiri said he tried to close an order but it did not close. He said he received a notification that his request to close the order had been accepted by the server.
The order (and two others) subsequently closed-out because Rawiri did not have enough funds to support his open orders. Rawiri lost around $20,000 on the three orders when they closed.
In late March 2022, Rawiri received an error message when he tried to close an order. The order did not close so Rawiri placed another request six seconds later. The order closed but the price was not as favourable to Rawiri. The difference to him was around $540.
Rawiri complained to the trading platform both times. They did not offer compensation because they did not find any issues with their system. Rawiri was not satisfied with their responses and he asked FSCL to investigate his trades.
Rawiri believed there was an ongoing issue with the trading platform which meant orders sometimes did not close when he requested this. He wanted to be compensated for his losses from early March, and the price difference for the trade in late March.
The trading platform believed there were no errors with their system. Their trading logs for the early March trade did not show any attempt by Rawiri to close the order.
For the late March trade, Rawiri’s initial request to close the order was cancelled because the price which was displaying was no longer available. This sometimes happens when the price moves quickly.
We concluded that Rawiri should discontinue his complaint.
There was insufficient evidence to support that Rawiri tried to close the order in early March before it was closed-out. Rawiri could not prove he had tried to close the order, and there was no record in the trading logs to support that he had.
For the latter trade, we were satisfied no error occurred. While Rawiri received the same message he received in February, the trading logs indicated that the circumstances were different.
In late March, there was one request to close the order which was rejected. For the February trade, many requests were rejected. This indicated to us that there was a system issue with the February trade, but not with the late March trade. The error message in late March was probably because the price displaying was no longer available (not because of a system issue with closing orders).
Rawiri did not agree with us but he did agree to discontinue his complaint.
Insights for consumers
Consumers who believe there is a problem with a trade should contact the trading platform immediately because prices can move quickly.
Rawiri contacted the trading platform around two and a half hours after the time he said he tried to close his order. By then, orders had closed-out, at large losses. All the trading platform could do was investigate the matter to see if a problem had occurred. They were not able to reverse the closed-out trades.