Whether you already have trading experience or are at the start of your currency trading journey, choosing the right broker is a crucial process. In our Forex broker comparison, we assess vital criteria, such as fees, account types, customer support, and other qualities to look for when selecting providers. Beside trading conditions and costs, we also take into account the current situation on the market – to identify the right Forex broker for you.
We compare the trading costs of individual providers. Opening a trading account is often free of charge, but brokers may charge fees based on the dealing spread, real-time prices, add-ons for trading platforms. To gain a comprehensive overview of each broker, you should take the spreads of the minor and exotic FX pairs into consideration. Go through each broker and compare who offers the lowest spreads.
Depending on the payment method, you may incur costs for deposits, withdrawals or a certain number of payments per month. Brokers may also charge fees for inactivity over a specified period. Be sure to check out the terms and conditions of each broker to see if they charge inactivity fees. It is vital if you are a position trader holding trades for months on end.
In addition to trading costs and fees, leverage can add significantly to the overall cost. Some brokers stagger the leverage on invested capital. Particularly high leverage offers are more appealing for experienced traders. While leverage is a crucial point, high leverage may not be a fit for your current trading activities.
More and more brokers now offer a choice between accounts for beginners, advanced traders, or VIPs. Often, accounts may vary in terms of deposit levels, but support and trading platforms could differ as well. For example, if you opt for a higher level account, you will be provided with a higher level of support and education from the broker. One thing to consider is the currency pairs you can trade with each account. There may be a restriction on FX pairs with specific accounts. The trading volume can also determine the account type – traders might begin with a starter account and then upgrade, according to trade volume. Sometimes traders can immediately opt for a higher account.
One point to consider, especially if you are a trader from the UK or Ireland, is whether you opt for a spread-betting account. Forex spread-betting accounts are not liable to taxation.
When comparing brokers, the following questions should be taken into consideration: What services do I get with each account? How do accounts differ? Are there any business offers?
Determining the right trading platform is vital for successful Forex trading. The best platforms have an intuitive user interface and allow for ease of operation. Specially developed software solutions are often available – depending on the broker, and many providers also will enable the use of existing platforms such as MetaTrader 4.
The structure and layout of the platform are essential, and a customisable interface is particularly advantageous. When comparing trading platforms, the focus should be on technical indicators and trading systems offered. When creating a strategy, technical indicators are indispensable. The more support the platform provides, the better you can focus on actual trading.
One tip when on the broker’s platforms is to check the prices for some currency pairs and compare them with the rates provided by other brokers. This way, you can make sure that they are providing you with the general market price. Some brokers have previously spiked or adjusted their prices without reason.
Opportunities for Forex trading on the move has become a must-have feature – one that allows for flexible use at any time. Apps for smartphones and tablets are typically well-designed and easy to use. A clear structure with an overview of your current trades is particularly helpful.
When comparing Forex providers, you should first check that the whole website is available in a language you can understand – sometimes, this is only obvious upon second glance. Some brokers may have an English language website, but it is often possible to set the language to your preference. Make sure that the translation is complete and easy to understand. It is vital as there may be crucial information on fees and currency pairs that you need to know.
Another essential factor is navigation – the website should be organised and guide you through the offer swiftly. ‘One-click’ navigation is particularly popular as you can view everything about the broker’s offer immediately. The website must provide easy access to the following information, contact options, cost models and fees, offers, account types, terms of service, information about the broker and an FAQ area may also be helpful.
Customer support is very important, especially when trading the Forex markets. As the markets are open 24/5 from Sunday to Friday, you may need customer support outside of regular working hours. So, you will want to bear this in mind when looking at the broker’s customer support service.
During your Forex trading experience, you may find that trading, payout, or trading platform issues arise. When evaluating a provider, we place great value on the contact options and the quality of the provider’s customer service. Many brokers provide a live chat option, and you can usually reach customer support via hotlines, e-mail or a contact form. In any case, you should be able to contact a member of staff free of charge.
Equally important are the languages that are spoken by the support team. Quite often, the support staff are English speaking, but many brokers offer other languages too. In addition to general support, some brokers provide a VIP service. Depending on your account or status, some providers may also provide you with a personal account manager.
You will need to deposit money into your trading account before you can start trading Forex currency pairs, and, if you are successful, you are going to want to transfer your profits to your private bank account. So, of course, we have to consider the possible payment methods.
Most Forex brokers offer credit cards, bank transfers and online payment services such as Neteller or Skrill. Credit cards are still a popular means of payment, as transactions are uncomplicated and processed within a short time. Bank transfers are considered very secure, but processing usually takes several days. Many brokers also allow deposits and withdrawals through online payment services such as Skrill, Neteller and PayPal – payment methods that are popular because of their transaction speeds.
When evaluating a broker, it is essential to consider the possible fees and limits. For example, it may well be that there is a minimum withdrawal amount. Some providers allow only a certain number of payments per month so that each additional transfer may come with a fee. It is essential to research the ways that you can deposit money into your Forex trading account. It is often the case that brokers will only allow withdrawals by the same method that you made the deposit.
Many brokers provide useful additional offers to their customers – starting with education and training. Only those providers who have well-developed education and training offers are deserving of the ‘Best Forex Broker for Beginners’ award. Even experienced traders can benefit from offers such as webinars or video tutorials. Some brokers also offer seminars, while others limit themselves to a blog with tips or even a trading academy. Offers such as an economic calendar or market analysis tools are also useful.
Some other offers to look out for are money awarded for the number of trades made, or introducing friends and family to the broker. These can help to top up your account and give you more money to trade different FX pairs.
REGULATION AND DEPOSIT PROTECTION
Regulation and deposit insurance are important issues, yet, they are not a guarantee that you will get a reputable Forex broker. There are many Forex broker scams out there, and so, it is vital to make sure you find a reliable broker. While it is not possible to completely exclude the possibility of fraud, you can at least be sure that regulated providers are licensed to offer their services on the market. The authorities responsible check brokers’ work at regular intervals.
To confirm that a broker is regulated, you can look up the directory of the authority specified on the broker’s website and examine their licensing information or possible Forex market quotations, amongst other details. Some of the more reputable financial authorities include the FCA, ASIC, and the SEC.
We recommend that you also find out about the amount of deposit insurance offered. It will provide additional protection and secures client funds in the event of bankruptcy, up to a certain amount.
Trade press information about Forex brokers can be helpful in assessments. Experienced brokers in the market or brokers who have already received awards such as ‘Best Forex Provider’ will often appear in the press. Many brokers link to media coverage on their website. Take advantage of this opportunity to gain an overview of the current media coverage of the broker and the awards they have won.
Even if a broker has been named ‘Best Forex Provider’ in the past, it is worth seeing if there are any more recent awards. Such awards are essential for brokers to build trust with their customers. Various magazines subject brokers to a test and give annual titles and awards for Forex trading.