Demand for financial spread betting services rose after the collapse of the financial markets, partly because traders could make money whether the markets were going up or down.
You might wonder why a form of financial trading for which any profits are exempt from tax is not more popular, but spread betting is not for the faint-hearted.
Demand for financial spread betting services rose after the collapse of the financial markets, at least partly because traders could make money whether the markets were going up or down. Advocates of spread betting also say its global popularity reflects how investors today are more sophisticated. However, one financial advisor says that spread betting is not particularly popular among Irish investors because it involves leverage and margin calls, which can prove very risky.
So is it just for the seasoned traders or those with a huge appetite for risk? Another issue is that promoting spread betting as a tax-free financial trading activity is misleading as it is essentially gambling.
As an activity gambling may fall outside of the scope of capital gains tax CGT , but not necessarily for income tax. Andrew Fahy, tax and financial planning director at Investec Wealth and Investment, says: A spokeswoman for the Revenue confirmed that spread betting is a gambling activity and is therefore not subject to CGT.
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