Interview With Adrian Buthee From Two Way Spreads

Published by Filipe R. Costa on Wed, 08/06/2011 - 17:00

This week Cut The Spread interviewed Adrian Buthee, Director of Twowayspreads, a UK based spread betting provider. This exclusive interview gives our users the opportunity of knowing more about spread betting from the perspective of an insider.

Filipe (Cut The Spread): Hi Adrian. Thank you for agreeing to this interview for Cut The Spread and let our users know a little more about Twowayspreads (TWS). I think that nowadays, with the ease of internet access, there is a lack of human feel and contact. We trade shares and buy things without even knowing the name of the person on the other side. I hope this interview can help our users to get some of that lost contact and get a real feel of the spread betting business at TWS. Let me start by asking you to give us some more information about TWS. How long have you been providing spread betting to retail investors? When was the company created?

Adrian (Twowayspreads): Twowayspreads was launched in 2004, so we have been offering spread betting for 7 years now.

F: And about you Adrian? How long have you been with TWS? Where have you been working before?

A: I joined the company also in 2004. My first job was for a stock broking firm in my hometown where I got the trading bug trading some banking shares! I got very much into derivative trading and when I moved firm, we decided to setup Twowayspreads to offer a comprehensive service and competitive pricing to retail clients.

F: What kind of markets can a client trade at TWS? Is there a global offer of equities from around the world? Do you offer currencies and commodity trading?

A: We realise that the modern trader wants a broad range of markets on a single platform, so we offer over 3000 different markets including shares, indices, currencies, commodities and bonds from around the world.

We quote individual shares from UK, US, Europe and South Africa. We also quote a large number of small cap stocks and are always happy to look at adding new markets. If you contact my sales team on +44 (0)207 0991138, they will happily investigate whether a new stock can be added to the platform.

Currencies are probably the most popular markets at Twowayspreads, probably on account of the low spreads we quote. We offer a large range of FX markets with different expiries to cater for longer and shorter terms positions.

Commodities are becoming increasingly popular, with a noticeable surge in activity in markets such as Gold (4 point spread) and Oil (3 point spread). They are both very topical markets and we like to ensure we offer all the markets people wish to trade.

F: That is certainly a very complete offer. What are the index preferences of TWS clients? Do they trade FTSE 100 and DAX or there are other targeted indexes?

A: Being a UK firm, FTSE 100 (1 point spread) is the most popular, but we have significant volume in the Dax (1 point spread) and the US indices such as Wall Street (2 point spread) and S&P (3 point spread).

F: Forex is always one of the most popular markets amongst chartists. Do TWS clients usually trade Forex? What are the main targeted pairs and crosses?

A: Yes, we have a lot of FX activity. Most of our Forex business is from day traders, some trading as often as 400 times a day! The main pairs are the Dollar majors, along with EUR/GBP and EUR/JPY. Most activity is certainly in EUR/USD and GBP/USD.

F: 400 times a day? That is really a lot! And about commodities? Crude oil and gold have been rising quickly this year and no one can be indifferent to such a change. Do you feel there is a renowned interest in commodity trading?

A: Absolutely! The volumes in these markets have certainly risen. At Twowayspreads, we like to ensure our clients are happy and have reacted to this by cutting our spreads to 4 points on Gold and 3 points on Oil. We now have some of the tightest spreads in the industry for these popular commodities.

F: TWS offer is very wide in terms of markets. But for a spread better it is very important to have tight spreads and reasonable margin requirements. Can you please give us some examples of what TWS has to offer on that matter?

A: Low margins are important to the modern trader. We offer the below margin requirements on our headline markets:

Initial Margin Requirements (IMR)
UK100 40 GBP/USD 80
DAX30 40 AUD/USD 80
Wall Street30 80 EUR/GBP 50
S&P 80 GOLD 200
EUR/USD 80 Crude Oil 250


To get low margins, some spread betting companies insist on traders placing a stop loss. We don’t. You decide whether you want to place a stop loss. The great thing is, we have order aware margining, so if you do place a stop, your margin requirement may be reduced.

F: Like I said at the beginning of the interview, we have been losing some of the human touch with the spread of internet. This industry has been automating all the trading process and sometimes forgetting the much needed client contact. I know that TWS bets in customer service trying to give a voice and a face to the spread betting service.  Can you explain us how that works?

A: You are right, it has been lost. As companies grow they typically forget the importance of the individual and their needs and rarely can you speak to the same person twice! We try to combine good customer service with low dealing spreads. When clients open their accounts, a member of the sales team will be their contact person throughout their trading with us. We like to spend time with our clients to understand their needs, explaining the platform, charts, margins etc. We run regular online webinars and 1to1 online sessions with our clients to ensure they have all the knowledge and support required before they start trading.

F: I have £10,000 sitting aside that I want to duplicate in a week. Can you please tell me where can I bet the lot?

A: We are not an advisory broker so I am afraid I cannot! However, we do have arrangements with a number of third party companies who offer discounted or free tipping services or trading software to Twowayspreads clients. Take a look at the “Tools” section of our new website or speak to our sales department for more details.

F: Very well, I’ll look into it! Adrian, sometimes things go wrong quite fast in the markets. Is there any particular moment that you want to share with us? Or maybe some good moments?

A: I remember a former colleague telling me about a very conscientious beginner who had spent a long time learning about trading before placing his first trade, which was a long on the S&P 500 future. Sadly, this first trade was on the morning of 11th September 2001. Poor chap. That is just bad luck. There are however plenty of great stories of clients with good money management and strategies making an excellent income from spread betting the markets. I know many trading the markets successfully full time.

F: Oh, that is such a bad luck. Hopefully any newcomers reading this don’t get scared with such an unfortunate event. Well, Adrian. Thank you very much for this opportunity. I’m sure Cut The Spread users can now have a better feel on how TWS works. I wish you good luck for the business.

A: Thank you Filipe.


If you want to know more, you can visit Twowayspreads website.


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garfieldz's picture

great interview Filipe!