There are several tips to follow when selecting a forex broker, either derived from research or from plain intuition. Yes, you want to be sure that a major regulatory body plays a role, and then there are product offerings, trading platforms, spreads and pricing, and customer service. Lastly, sometimes as an afterthought, industry awards and recognition can be the last bit of information that sways the decision one way or another.
It is important if industry peers and reviewers hold a broker in high regard. There are a multitude of sites that review a broker, often being paid for the service, but the ones that bestow an award in the process must justify such recognition. Awards do not always go to the biggest and the oldest in a region. Yes, the large brokers like IG and OANDA take a major share of the awards that are handed out, but other brokers also factor into the mix from time to time. When searching for the ‘Best Forex Trading Platforms Singapore’, four forex websites stand out for 2021.
Pepperstone was founded in 2010 in Melbourne, Australia, and from those humble beginnings in the Asia Pacific region, it has grown to be a world leader in the forex industry. A dedicated team of experienced traders decided that they wanted to “provide traders around the world with superior technology, low-cost spreads and a genuine commitment to helping them master the trade” (source: Pepperstone). Its initial plan seems to have worked since daily trading volumes now exceed US$12.6bn per day from a customer base of over 300,000 accounts spread out across the globe.
Institutional-grade spreads are the rule with the broker’s basic standard account, or you can opt for a Razor account, which has zero spreads but a commission structure that benefits an active trader. The firm’s extensive network of Tier-One liquidity providers ensures that spreads and execution times rival the best in the industry. Both account offerings also allow for the use of EAs, hedging, or scalping strategies with no dealing desk interference with over 60 currency pairs to choose from on a daily basis.
Pepperstone offers three trading platform environments – MT4, MT5, and cTrader. MT4 has a long history of being the most popular forex trading platform ever developed, but for traders that prefer a newer design with more complex features, MT5 and cTrader are options worthy of your consideration. Pepperstone has customised these offerings to a degree and has won awards for being one of the best MT4 platforms in the industry. In all three cases, trading tools and features augment the basic platform environment, together with the ability to connect to social trading communities. The firm’s Autochartist program utilises pattern recognition software to generate potential trading ideas on an automated basis.
Pepperstone has partnered with a broad set of social trading platforms to enable its customers to benefit from the trading strategies of experts. The firm’s offering has three components:
Pepperstone has a lengthy record of winning forex industry awards and not just in Singapore, as noted above. In 2021, Investingoal named Pepperstone its “#1 Best Broker in the World”, beating out eToro and IG in the process. This independent evaluator also bestowed its “Best” ratings to Pepperstone for its cTrader platform offering and for its support of scalping strategies. Lastly, it also won Best Broker in Australia, as well, and these awards only have to do with 2021.
IG was established in 1974 and now has over 239,000 worldwide clients. It is the Number One provider of CFDs in the world and provides access to over 17,000 markets for assets under its roof. IG is also one of only nine forex brokers that are licensed and regulated by the MAS in Singapore. The group also adheres to the strict compliance requirements of the FCA in the UK, but also of importance, IG is on the London Stock Exchange and a constituent of the FTSE 250 index. As a public company, IG must comply with more stringent reporting and disclosure standards on an ongoing basis.
IG offers a wide range of platform options for its customers. MetaTrader4 is just one alternative, but the firm has several proprietary solutions, which can appeal to the demands of traders at all levels. IG has gained recognition for its trading platforms and services from a number of rating bodies. In 2020, IG was the winner of the prestigious award for ‘Best Multi Platform Provider’ by the ADVFN International Financial Awards committee. In the same year, it also won the ‘Best Finance App’ from the same group. In 2019, IG won the coveted ‘Best for Forex Trading’ award from Investopedia.
Each platform option is supplemented with advanced charting tools and features that allow for scalping, EAs, and hedging strategies. IG does not have a proprietary social trading capability, but it does have partner services that accomplish this copycat trading approach either through the MetaTrader community or by way of its Trading Signals collaboration. In the latter case, Autochartist and PIA First, a pair of automated technical service and analysis providers, deliver actionable trade advice for entry and exit points, together with supporting analysis.
IG also takes pride in its large network of major liquidity providers. This network enables extremely fast execution speeds and tight spreads. In summary, IG provides one of the widest ranges of product offerings in the world on best-in-class platforms. Safety and security are assured due to its compliance with strict regulatory oversight in the forex arena, as well as in the sector of publicly traded companies. IG has always been a winner and will continue to be so.
Plus500 was founded in 2008. It is headquartered in Israel and is a leading broker for CFD trading in both Europe and Asia. In 2018, it joined the London Stock Exchange and became a constituent of the FTSE 250 index. The company’s primary regulator is the FCA in the UK, but it also complies with CySEC, ASIC, MAS and the Seychelles FSA.
Plus500 is a leading provider of Contracts for Difference (CFDs) on forex, stock indices, individual shares, Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs), cryptocurrencies, and commodities. From a forex perspective, it offers over 60 currency pairs for trading, along with 13 of the more popular cryptocurrencies. Since the trade vehicle is a CFD, the trader never has direct ownership of the underlying asset. Outside of currency pairs, the Plus500 offering includes more than 2,500 tradable assets from markets across the globe.
Plus500 is the exception to the rule when it comes to trading platforms. The team elected not to go with the very popular MetaTrader platform products but decided to develop a proprietary platform that is extremely straightforward and user-friendly. In addition to the normal technical indicators, chart drawing tools, and sentiment measures, the Plus500 platform increases your possibilities up to 100 indicators and 22 drawing tools. Another helpful feature is that alerts can be set in any market and tied to sentiment readings, as well.
Plus500 has subsidiaries across the globe located in the UK, Australia, Singapore, Cyprus, Israel, Seychelles, Bulgaria, and the United States. The firm’s website claims more than 430,000 active customers with over 82 million positions opened.
Plus500 has also had its share of award recognitions over the years. Including titles such as ‘Best Broker in Europe’. It has also been recognised from time to time as the best forex trading platform for beginners. Plus500 has stuck to the basics with its platform tools and offering, and it shows.
Tickmill was founded in 2014 and has already become an industry-acclaimed Forex and CFD broker. Its headquarters are based in London, while its global staff of over 200 employees has forex industry experience which dates back to the eighties. Tickmill also complies with regulatory standards in multiple regions, the foremost one being the FCA, but CySEC and agencies in South Africa and Malaysia also provide oversight. It serves clients in 200+ countries and processed over 115 million trades in 2020 alone.
Tickmill has excelled on the institutional end of the forex business, serving a host of banks, hedge funds, money managers, and brokers. As a result, it has built an extensive network of major liquidity providers that ensures fast response times, low fees, tight spreads, and an absence of re-quotes. This network also supports the firm’s retail business, thereby giving individual traders the best trading experience possible.
The management team at Tickmill decided not to develop a proprietary trading platform. It chose instead to offer its customised version of the highly popular MetaTrader family of trading platform products. Traders have always been impressed with MT4’s user-friendly interfaces, broad cadre of charting tools and global support communities.
Tickmill’s Advanced Trading Toolkit expands upon these capabilities with a host of features related to news feeds, trader sentiments, and market overviews. These capabilities are supplemented by an extensive library of training materials, including video tutorials, webinars, seminars, and ebooks.
Tickmill Group has won a number of prestigious industry awards in recent years related to the quality of its service delivery. In 2020 and 2021, these included #1 Broker for Commissions and Fees, Best Customer Service, Best Trading Experience, and Most Reliable Broker. There is ample reason why Tickmill is one of the fastest-growing brokers in the forex industry, with over 350,000 registered accounts under its belt and growing.
When selecting a forex broker, many factors come into play in the decision-making process. It can be a daunting task because each broker attempts to win you over with an impressive website, customer testimonials that are always positive, and product and service offerings that are always touted as the best. Reviews can help, but at the end of the day, so much of what you observe and discover looks the same.
If you come down to a handful of brokers, what can be a tiebreaker? A history of winning awards in the forex industry can be that extra bit of information necessary to finalise your opinion. Yes, there are several entities that bestow awards on an annual, regional, and global basis, but it helps to review the methodology employed and if the names of the winners are familiar.
For brokers that are accustomed to winning, a formidable track record of industry recognition is a major marketing tool, which is often displayed front and centre on the firm’s website. The award should also list the source company that bestowed the recognition. In your due diligence, you will want to verify this detail. Many fraudulent brokers in the industry display all kinds of awards, but the source of the rating company will typically be missing or cite a non-existing entity.
At the end of the day, industry awards enhance the reputation of the recipient for credibility and trust. Studies have also shown that the receipt of an award can also lead to a boost in sales, an indication that potential new clients do appreciate independent industry recognition. What could be better than an independent endorsement by a third party?
A good track record can also set the broker apart from the pack of competitors and establish a stamp of approval that other firms do not possess. Check the awards status of any potential broker is a good thing.
Forex traders in Singapore have a number of excellent trading platform providers from which to access the forex market. First on our list is Pepperstone, a stellar forex broker that has its roots in Australia and in the Asia Pacific region. It is highly regarded by all forex industry participants, as evidenced by many awards for service not only in Singapore but also across the globe in all markets.
But Pepperstone is not the only forex broker of note from this perspective. IG Group, Plus500, and Tickmill are also excellent brokers in their own right. Each has received several awards for noteworthy performance. Any one of these four brokers represents the best of the best when it comes to reputation, tight spreads, quick execution times, excellent trading platforms and customer service, and customer loyalty. Each would make an excellent partner.