Foreign Exchange

I’m looking for a decent firm to convert my RMD in American Dollars to English pounds. I am a dual citizen of both countries and reside in England. Thanks for any help.

The obvious way is to have your RMD paid into your US bank, then use Swift to transfer it to your UK bank.

Doesn’t that work for you? I do it the other way around, UK Pounds to US Dollars.

If you don’t already have the accounts in place there could be problems.

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The RMD is going to my Citibank online account that has both US$ and GB£. Their exchange rate is very expensive. I thought I could work around it.

What rate do they give you?

They give me 1£ = 1.4002$
Rate online gives 1£ = 1.36$

You are unlikely to ever get an online rate for currency exchange. There is usually a ‘spread’ associated with the cost of conversion. $0.04 (or 4 ‘pips’) is fairly common and similar to the bid/ask you would have on stocks.

Note, you would see a similar spread if you ordered foreign currency as well (e.g. you needed it for a trip).

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Oops, after I posted I realized I misread, they are quoting you $0.04, or 400 pips, not $0.0004, which is 4 pips. Ya, 400 pips is excessive. Not sure what alternative you have.

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I don’t do it and if you don’t already have an account it probably isn’t worth it, but I thought you can easily convert between currencies if you have an Interactive Brokers account.


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If I understand this correctly, Wise is offering 1.36 right now -

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Ive started to look at how to transfer US IRA funds back to the UK too. I think that Wise is probably the way to go but I may hit a problem getting money from my IRA “provider” to Wise - looks like a $25 charge on every transfer, then the Wise costs on top.

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Thank you.