The way I see it - the ESMA regulation is made to only help the brokers.
1. More equity required to open a live trading account = fewer newbies.
2. Fewer newbie traders = less customer support needed = less money paid for salaries.
3. Making other traders register as professional trades is good for the brokers because:
- They (the brokers) are no longer obligated to provide negative balance protection.
- The investor compensation funds do not apply for professional traders.
- The broker is no longer obligated to provide best order execution conditions = more slippage.
4. Lowering the margin has nothing to do with protecting the little trader. It's a way to drive them away from trading (with a regulated broker).
5. It will make small traders to go overseas OR register with unregulated brokers which is an opportunity for them to get scammed by bucket shops.
That is why the big brokers are not making a fuss. The new regulation is made for them. Not to protect the traders.
Lowering the leverage has nothing to do with the risk a trader is taking.
If ESMA really wants to protect the traders - make them learn risk management.
Risk management =/= lower leverage.
That's just my opinion and nobody is obligated to agree.