The AskTraders Analyst Team features experts in technical and fundamental analysis, as well as traders specializing in stocks, forex, and cryptocurrency.
The IG Group was founded in 1974 and has its headquarters in London, UK. It was initially called Investors Gold (IG) Index and focused on spread betting. The company has since grown to include other services and is now among the leading brokers in the world – if not the best CFD broker in the world. It is a pioneer in online trading and its multi-awarded, user-friendly platform allows clients access to over 16,000 financial markets. The IG app makes it more convenient for clients to execute trades, wherever they may be.
Having access to an excellent online trading platform is crucial to any investor’s success. Understanding the different markets is challenging enough. Clients who engage in self-trading need all the right tools at their disposal. This is what the IG app hopes to provide. It offers risk management tools by supplying its users with a means to regulate their exposure. The “stop-loss” option can be set to avoid further losses. A “guaranteed stop” feature will exit a position precisely on the designated amount. Selecting a “trailing stop” will allow clients to lock in their profits should the market take a downturn.
Setting “limit orders” will automatically close a position should it reach the desired price level. Note however that neither the “stop-loss” nor the “trailing stop” options prevent slippage. These help self-traders customise their dealings according to their preferred management style. There are also powerful technical charts to further aid clients in executing their trades. They are potent analysis and customisation tools that are designed to give IG clients insightful data before making a decision. More importantly, their trading software is not confined to a desktop computer but across a wide range of devices. Ivan Gowan, IG’s Head of IT Development shares: “No matter what device you got in today’s marketplace you can go to the store and you’ll find IG there with a specialized trading platform.”
By making the free IG trading app available to be installed on different devices, clients are able to access its services while on the go. There is an IG app for iPads and an IG app for iPhones. The IG app for Android devices are of course also available. Installing an IG app for Android mobile phones and tablets will likewise provide users with access to over 16,000 markets similar to other gadgets. This shows that the power of the IG app is not limited to a desktop or laptop computer. Its importance is not to be taken lightly and not all online trading companies offer the same flexibility as the IG Group. Traders have different schedules and varying styles of fund management.
They cannot and should not be compelled to execute their trades through a computer alone. Receiving a crucial alert on a position and being able to perform the necessary adjustment could mean the difference between huge profits or modest gains. Conversely, it could also provide timely information to save the client from further losses. On top of these security measures, users are able to participate in their desired asset class. Aside from CFD trading, the IG trading app also offers access to indices trading, share trading, forex trading and even cryptocurrencies. According to IG’s Head of Trading Services, Paul Stevens: “[…]our client should be able to trade on anything, anywhere.”
This IG review would not be complete without stating its awards. This is why there is hardly any CFD broker comparison once IG is in the picture. The company has not only won annually in the UK but internationally as well. Since 2015 alone, the company has been honoured with 33 accolades. This number would only continue to increase as 2018 is not even through with its second quarter. It is worth noting that the company has received recognition in Australia, France, Germany, South Africa and Switzerland.
The app has won in Australia last 2015 for a Best Mobile Trading Offering and bagged a Top Online Broker citation in South Africa last September 2015. These are just some awards that are published on its IG Group website. There are definitely other citations that were not included there and it has certainly won awards previous to 2015. Going over the present list however would immediately reveal that IG’s strength lies in its platform, trading app and CFD selection. Below are some of its most recent awards.
The IG app’s world-leading status epitomises the company’s desire to help its clients succeed. It grants users the ability to open a demo account prior to trading securely over its 256-bit SSL encryption technology. The tools at their disposal allows them to prepare, monitor, control, trade and analyse their positions and further explore other options. Traders are aided by preset alerts which allow them to react immediately to sudden changes in the market. IG offers participation in equities, CFDs and smart portfolios (UK only), however it is most recognised as a global leader in CFD trading. Its CFD product range astoundingly includes 25 equity markets (10,000 stocks), 68 indices, 94 forex currency pairs, 47 commodities and six cryptocurrencies.
This overwhelming selection is kept in check through the IG app whose efficiency is maintained across the various devices which carry its IG app. CFD trading and quick access to an online trading platform go hand in hand. The company recognises the importance of this by ensuring the effectiveness and reliability of its trading app for its clients who are on the go. IG’s CIO and Dealing Director Jon Noble said it best: “CFD is probably best used for a shorter term trade rather than a long term investment. And therefore the technology that you use to both do the trade and do the research before the trade is absolutely vital.”
IG connects investors to a wide selection of the global financial markets. They have different options, however, on how they would like to approach these exchanges. The company offers three main investment accounts for its clients to choose from. First is the share dealing option, which gives the user freedom to execute trades independently. Commissions for UK shares range between £5 (0-9 trades) to £8 (10+ trades). For international shares, IG trading fees are usually at 0.1% per trade for listed countries except the United States which goes for $0.02 per share. The next investment account is called the IG Smart Portfolio.
It assigns the client to a live broker who will manage their portfolio for them. This is recommended for investors who prefer entrusting their investments to professionals. Finally, there is the CFD and spread betting account. In addition to the wide selection of financial markets, users can also speculate on 94 forex pairs and up to six cryptocurrencies. Potential clients will be pleased to know that they will be able to access these robust features through the IG app as well. Some countries, however, will only be able to trade on CFD accounts. This is not necessarily a drawback since there is already an abundant selection of CFD products to choose from. Participating in these markets through IG’s user-friendly platform could likely boost an investor’s performance through its ease of use and mobility.
There is a vast array of markets that an IG app user can expect to participate in. Clients can access equity markets in ten locations. Among them are the UK, Ireland, Malta, Cyprus, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Gibraltar, Guernsey, Isle of Man and Jersey. There are eight locations where they can engage in stock indices trading. These include the UK, US, Australia, Belgium, the Netherlands, Austria, Germany and Ireland. This means that the IG app can offer investment opportunities in UK’s FTSE 250 and the NASDAQ 100 of the US. Participating in IG’s CFD offerings, however, is another story altogether. It dwarfs most of the product lines of other trading platform companies. Well-known firms such as eToro, Plus 500 and Oanda cannot keep up. IG’s equity CFD access is over 12,000 stocks and counting.
On the other hand, eToro can muster only a little over 3,000. The latter’s number is certainly substantial, though this emphasises IG’s variety more than anything. This wide divide is further exemplified when it comes to CFD indices. IG can provide close to 70 while two leading platforms combined can only support half that number. There is no change when it comes to forex CFDs. IG has 94 trading pairs with the next closest trading platform trailing at 70. It is limited to six digital coins.
IG has grown to 14 locations worldwide since its establishment in 1974. It has over 1,400 employees providing key services to its 185,000 clients and counting. The company is listed in the FTSE 250 Index with a market capitalisation of £2.1 billion recorded last May 2017. It bears stressing that clients can feel a certain degree of security trading with a reputable firm such as IG. Being regulated by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is another plus for IG. The FCA protects clients of financial firms by maintaining the integrity of the UK’s financial services industry. Furthermore, IG’s support team was previously mentioned to have been recognised as Best Trading Support in the Online Personal Wealth Awards of 2018.
These elements all converge to provide its users with market-leading technology to help them reach their long-term financial goals. Its IG app is but a current manifestation of the company’s eagerness to provide best-in-market products and services for its clientele. This is available not only to entice more users onto the trading platform but more for client retention by continuing to be a trailblazer in its field. Sally Wickens, IG’s Account Setup Manager, sums up these points. She previously stated that: “We’ve had 40 years’ experience in the market. People know who we are. We’re trusted with our clients. We have really long-standing clients who have been with us since the start.”
It is difficult to doubt a company that has been in the financial services industry for close to 45 years. Any broker comparison on this point alone will likely tilt in IG’s favor. For an investment firm to last that long it would probably mean that they are doing something right. There are of course older brokerage firms than IG, however it would be hard to match their award-winning IG trading platform. Not only that, the company has also won in multiple categories on a consistent annual basis. Among these is its IG app. Its ease of use and the robust features it offers have proven it to be a leader in the financial services industry not only in the UK but internationally as well.
The company is also among the top online CFD providers in the world. Its clients are able to access over 16,000 financial markets, giving them greater flexibility compared to other online trading platforms. In spite of these valid points, it bears stressing that it should be the user who should ultimately decide. There is no other way to know for sure than to actually do a test run. The app itself is free to download and it offers a demo account. Those who want to give it a try are not obliged to make a deposit. They have nothing to lose and everything to gain in the process.
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