The last few years have undoubtedly been turbulent for traders across the world and the UK in particular, due to numerous shock political results and Brexit creeping ever nearer.

IG have released some useful information regarding UK trading activity on their platform around these events. Here is an insight into some of the activity at the time of these events.

China’s ‘Circuit Breaker’ Slowdown

This event had a slightly more limited effect on UK trading activity, perhaps owing to less publicity, and perhaps owing to it not being included as a scheduled political event. It saw 9176 traders conduct 70,319 trades over 1153 markets.*

The event involved China using its ‘circuit breaker’ shutdown measure on its stock markets, and caused a great deal of uncertainty in global markets, with worldwide indices being affected. Interestingly, the majority of trades were conducted on a desktop, largely due to a lack of overnight trading which may have seen more mobile trading involved.


The UK’s collective decision to leave the EU after 43 years as a member was one of the most unexpected and unprecedented events of recent years. The pound immediately sank to a 31 year low, sending markets into shock. Being an event much closer to home, trading activity was naturally at a higher level.

In total, 13,036 traders conducted 97,180 trades over 1384 markets, and slightly more trading was conducted via iPhone and Android possibly due to Brexit results being released throughout the early hours. Brexit’s forecasted effect on UK businesses was a focus of the Remain camp’s argument, and the likely cause of the spike in shares trading.

US Election

Yet again the US election, which saw wildcard candidate Donald Trump become president, was a huge shock result. It saw the most total UK traders and trades conducted of the three events, at 14,049 and 144,883 respectively. The number of markets traded in, however, was much lower at 996.

Traders were clearly cautious of Trump’s potential influence on the global economy, as investments in the safe haven asset gold accounted for 61% of all commodity trades. Again, many trades (57%) were conducted on a mobile device, suggesting that UK traders prefer this platform for night trading.

These events have caused significant market activity in the UK, largely due to their potential to cause long term economic changes. The statistics clearly show how UK traders increase their trading activity in relation to the significance of each political/economic event.

*All statistics and figures courtesy of