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Currency exchange fees too high, consumers tell banks

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CurrencyFair, a new international currency exchange fund, today released research claiming that consumers are unhappy with the fees they pay banks. The research, conducted by Galaxy, showed that 88 percent of Australians think that banks charge too much for overseas money transfers. Director of CurrencyFair's Australian operations, Sean Barrett, said, "We see banks taking fees in excess of $30 per transaction and that’s before you factor in their massive margin on the exchange rate and potential additional charges." In response to the research, 91 percent of those surveyed said that they would be interested in using a low cost online marketplace for their next transaction. "We’ve proven we can offer a superior service at a fraction of the cost," said Barrett. "As former bankers and expatriates who’ve been on both sides of the coin, we developed CurrencyFair as an online marketplace for currency exchanges. We want to offer our customers a fair deal for transfers that are fast, secure and reliable. We back this up with exceptional hands on customer service meaning no more filling in forms at the bank or trying to get the right person from an automated phone message." The online currency exchange marketplace allows users to exchange their money in multiple currencies but avoid bank fees. It also allows users to exchange with other users by determining the rate at which they wish to exchange. The website aims to reduce the fees paid by both parties by cutting out the middle man in currency exchange. Since its beginning in 2010, CurrencyFair now exchanges over AU$1 million in currency transactions every day. The Galaxy research was conducted online among 1,013 Australians aged 18-64.

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