RECOMMENDED FOREX BROKERS
FXCM is a broker to behold. There are few that are able to maintain such an institution; and that’s just what this is, an institution. Yet, FXCM cannot be all perfect. Can it?
FXCM Markets Limited, and all its subsidiaries, are owned by the FXCM Group holding company. The holding company is based in London. The companies that form FXCM Group are regulated in several different jurisdictions around the world. It takes its regulations very seriously, as you will see down below.
Forex Capital Markets Limited (FXCM LTD) is strictly regulated by the FCA in the UK. The FCA strives to enforce strict industry standards, requires detailed reports from the company, and generally oversees that FXCM Limited’s activities are within the boundaries of the law. FXCM is a member of the Investors Compensation Fund allowing for client compensations of up to €85 000 if the broker cannot meet its obligations to the trader.
In Australia, FXCM Australia Pty. Limited is regulated by the ASIC, or the Australian Securities and Investments Commission. The main goals of this institution are to enforce financial laws when need be, and serve the Australian public and their financial lives.
In France, the company operates by being registered by the Paris Trade and Companies Register. The business goes by the name FXCM France. FXCM France is under the direct regulations of both the ACPR (Autorité de Contrôle Prudentiel et de Résolution) and AMF (Rules of Conduct and Principles of Implementation), fighting money laundering and fraudulent activities within the financial sector in France.
The last subsidiary is FXCM South Africa (PTY) LTD, as authorized by the Financial Services Provider (FSP) and regulated by the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA). The regulatory agency aims to promote fair customer treatment, but above all else to maintain a stable financial market for the institutions under its governance.
The typical spread for EUR/USD is 1.2-1.3 pips, with the default account, while Active Trader account holders will be issued with a 0.1 pips spread including a commission, but more on that later in the review. Traders outside the jurisdiction of ESMA imposed rules (max, leverage 1:30 in EU and UK), are defaulted to a leverage of 1:400 on Forex currency pairs and 1:200 on CFD’s.
Assets at FXCM Markets Limited are, by industry standards, sufficient yet with a company this size it’s surprising that there aren’t more variations. The following are the instruments of trade currently on show at FXCM Markets Limited: Forex currency pairs, indices, commodities and crytpo currencies.
FXCM Markets Limited proves its stature as a global broker by the sheer amount of supported languages: UK English, Canadian English, Australian English, South African English, Chinese, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Greek, Filipino, Indonesian, Malay, Vietnamese, Arabic and Hebrew.
The broker comes with a handful of trading platforms. MetaTrader 4, NinjaTrader, and ZuluTrade are here to satisfy, but it’s the company’s own Trading Station that’s publicized most.
As a leading trading platform, MT4 has become a household name. FXCM has adapted MT4 as its primary platform by offering some great features: micro lots, automated trading bots, 500 individual orders per account, VPS’s (Virtual Private Servers), customizable trading indicators, and much more. FXCM also has included Algorithm Trading that helps traders get the best trading strategies using complex mathematical algorithms.
Using the classic account, the spread for EUR/USD will range from 1.2-1.3 pips, while the maximum leverage is 1:400 (1:30 for EU and UK, as imposed by ESMA)
Active Trader account holders will have access to a much smaller spread of 0.2 burdened with a commission of $5 ($2.5 per side) for 1 standard lot. This rises the actual spread from 0.2 to 0.7 pips. Not a considerable change, but a change nonetheless.
Get access to your MT4 account from any phone or tablet (Android/iOS), as well a desktop version. There is no browser MT4 currently in operation.
This FXCM developed by platform is highly interactive and informative. The design is smooth, and there is just about everything a trader wants out of a trading terminal. There is an abundance of chart tools, Real Volume indicators- to allow for more efficient trading-, automated trading strategies, and a Cloud virtual storage space for accounts and chart settings, and a helpful zoom feature. Plus, there is the ability to utilize Algo Trading- complex mathematical equations being calculated by sophisticated systems in order to give you the best strategies.
The average spread is 1.2 pips, while leverages go as high as 1:400 (1:30 for EU and UK, as imposed by ESMA).
Holders of Active Trader account type (0.2 pips) will be commissioned with $5 ($2.5 per side) for every standard lot. This raises the Active Trader spread from 0.2 pips to 0.7 pips. Have this in mind.
The good news is that Trading Station can be used on a browser and as a standalone desktop software, plus it comes with mobile and tablet version too.
NinjaTrader does not shy away from features, meaning that is has all that traders and brokers have come to expect from this type of platform. It comes with an array of clean and customizable charts, great design choices, drawing tools and over 150 analytical tools. Traders can take advantage of NinjaTrader’s Automated Trading Interface for full automated trading strategies. Even more, Algo Trading will allow them to take advantage of sophisticated mathematical equations resulting in better strategies.
NinjaTrader spread averages about 1.2 pips for EUR/USD, and 0.7 pips for Active Trade account holders (commission included). The leverage can be as high as 1:400, and 1:30 in the EU and UK because of ESMA requirements.
At the time of writing this review NinjaTrader comes only as a desktop version, meaning no phone, tablet or browser forms are supported.
ZuluTrader is essentially an online platform for copying more advanced traders, and in so doing traders can build their own portfolios. With hundreds of different signal providers, ZuluTrade has introduced a sorting feature that will make things easier when the time for choosing has come. At their end, signal providers get compensated by 0.5 pips when a lot is traded using their strategy, i.e they are motivated to provide good strategies.
ZuluTrader is available for tablets and smartphones. Get the desktop version as well, or if that’s not your thing there is a web based version as well.
FXCM MINIMUM DEPOSIT
(The website is vague when it comes down to deposit and withdrawal information)
The minimum deposit is 50 in all currencies.
The funds in an account will be one from the following: GBP, USD, EUR, CHF
Clients of FXCM can deposit using a number of common methods: Debit and credit cards, Bank Wire, Skrill, Neteller, Union Pay.
It takes around 1 business day to make a deposit via credit or debit card, Skrill or Neteller. For Bank Wire it’s usually 1-5 working days.
There are no deposit fees.
FXCM WITHDRAWAL TIME AND FEES
Withdrawal methods are limited to say the least when compared to other global brokers: Credit or Debit card, Bank Wire, Skrill.
Usually Skrill withdrawals are instant. Bank Wire can take up to 5 business days, while credit/debit cards can take up to a billing cycle. As always, once the withdrawal request has been processed by the firm it’s up to the payment system to transfer the money to your personal account in the time they need to do so.
The only withdrawal charge, by the broker, is a $40 fee when using Bank Wire. By using all other methods, traders can be eligible for a payment system charge.
For a broker of this stature there are certain limitations that raise questions. The small number of deposit/withdrawal methods for instance, or the small number of account types. Yet we are impressed by the volume of features and options this broker gives us. We recommend it to all.