Internet trading could help revitalise the local leveraged foreign exchange market, which has shrunk substantially since tough laws were introduced in 1994. The volume of leveraged foreign exchange business conducted in Hong Kong has been in decline ever since the implementation of the Leveraged Foreign Exchange Trading Ordinance, introduced after a series of scandals, according to Sonny Yeung Hoi-sing, vice-chairman of the Emperor Group, the operator of an Internet foreign exchange information site. But Mr Yeung said the Internet could now revive the sector by using technology that made it more convenient than ever for investors to access forex trading information. In December alone his company's forex information site, emperorforex.com, attracted about two million hits. The site provides real-time quotations in Chinese for nine currency cross rates. The service would be extended to online forex trading in the next 18 months. 'We hope Internet technology can help [entice] retail investors back to forex trading,' Mr Yeung said. Emperor International, which has 16 branches and about 10,000 active clients in Hong Kong and Macau, was one of the largest local retail forex trading firms. However, its clients and turnover had dropped by about half compared with the early 1990s, when the industry was at its height, Mr Yeung said. At present, the site provides a forex information service to the public free of charge. But after the initial six-month promotion period, such information would be given only to those who registered with the firm's forex trading service, Mr Yeung said. Locally based service provider Acetrader.com also provides forex quotations and forecasts on the Web on a subscription basis.