Category Archives: Forex Regulation and Licensing – Regulated Forex Brokers

Online Forex Trading Regulation: Articles regarding regulation in the Forex trading services sector including Forex exchange and Broker services. Forex trading is a form of financial market instrument and as such in order for a Forex trading or service website to work online it must be licensed to do so according to regulations of the countries from which it receives and solicits clients. Many Forex trading websites, companies and brands are not regulated – when using a Forex trading service you should always check that it is indeed regulated and licensed in order to avoid fraud and scams. IG MarketseToro4XFXSaxo Bank

Is Saxo Bank Regulated? Saxo Bank Regulation | Saxo Bank Review

Is Saxo Bank Regulated? Saxo Bank Licensing and Regulation

Back in 1992, Saxo Bank launched its Forex brokerage operations under a different brand name, but it has come a long way since then. Now, Saxo Bank has become one of the leading global brokerage houses that have a substantial presence in the Middle East, Europe and Asia-Pacific. Group offices of Saxo Bank can be found in all notable financial locations all over the world, which include Paris, London, Tokyo, Sydney, Singapore, Dubai and Zurich. Saxo Bank is a licensed bank with license number 1149 and has its headquarters in Copenhagen, Denmark. It is regulated as a full-fledged Danish bank by the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority (FSA).

Moreover, it also holds the distinction of being the first Forex broker to be regulated by the Danish FSA in Denmark under the new guidelines outlined by the ECB and European MiFID derivatives. Saxo Bank can provide traders with the most reliable regulatory protections in the whole of the Forex trading community because this institution is also regulated by the FCA of the UK, the FSC of Hong Kong, the ASIC of Australia, the Banque de France and the DFSA of Dubai. Saxo Bank has to deal with stringent financial reporting requirements under the directives of the European Union and also have to comply with specific regulations pertaining to client handling.

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Saxo Bank Review

When it comes to Forex trading, Saxo Bank is one of the largest retail brokers that you can find in the market. As mentioned above, it is a heavily regulated broker, not just in its own home country, but also in other countries and it is also one of the oldest ECNs available to institutional traders and retail clients. The number of different markets that can be accessed through Saxo Bank for the purpose of trading is simply staggering.

Reputation

Any potential trader has the aim of finding a trading broker or website it can rely on and there are a number of factors that need to be considered when making this decision. Some people put more emphasis on the quality use of software whereas others are simply looking for a higher return on investment. However, most of the traders out there have one primary concern; the broker or website they are going to use can be trusted and is safe to use in the long term. There is a lot of fear in the market about websites that are scams and frauds so it is a great bonus for any trader to say that a website is not a scam.

There are a number of ways in which a trustworthy broker can flourish and building a strong reputation in the market is one of them. This is exactly what Saxo Bank has accomplished. Even though it received its license in 2001, the company had been trading since 1996 under a different name (Midas). This is incredibly useful because it is an assurance that Saxo Bank has a wealth of experience under its belt, which can benefit all traders in the modern era. This doesn’t mean only brokers that are experienced can be used because there are plenty of new and innovative options available.

However, when you combine Saxo Bank’s experience with the level of security it has to offer, it can become an irresistible option. Whether you are indulging in trade for the purpose of testing your skills, taking a bit of risk or for the purpose of return, you obviously consider money important. Thus, it is a good starting point to start your trading with a firm like Saxo Bank that has a strong reputation in the market. In 2010, the company did undergo an investigation when allegations were made by some former employees. But, it received a clean bill of health and it was proved that the site is not a scam, which is all you can ask for in today’s day and age.

One of the best features of Saxo Bank is that it provides traders with the option of a free trial period for a specific duration. This enables traders to get firsthand experience of how the software and platforms work and if it is in accordance with their needs. The fact that Saxo Bank has the confidence of giving people a free trial option is an indicator that they believe in the system they are offering. Again, this is a further indication of the website’s strength, reputation and reliability because it gives people the option of trying it without investing any money.

Market Access

As Saxo Bank is a Direct Market Access/ECN broker, it provides traders with access to a global liquidity pool and the largest liquidity providers. Secure ECN channels are used for transmitting all orders in order to provide the best trading experience. One of the most important aspects of trading is Direct Market Access because it gives traders the opportunity of avoiding a conflict with their brokers. Not only can broker-related problems be avoided, but with direct market access traders can also get tight spreads, best pricing and instant order executions that are free of any interference from dealing desks.

One of the key aspects of opening an account with Saxo Bank is that it gives you the opportunity of investing in a sheer number of financial products across a wide spectrum of capital markets. Traders are connected to 36 different financial markets all over the world by Saxo Bank as it works with stock exchanges, liquidity providers and global partners for this purpose. Thus, when you decide to trade via Saxo Bank, you have the option of choosing from 19,000 stocks, 7,000 bonds, 200 futures, 182 FX currency pairs, 3,100 ETFs, 29 indices, 9,000 CFDs and 75 contract options. This is perhaps one of the largest collection of financial assets that are offered by a single service provider.

Matching the number of financial products that are offered by Saxo Bank is immensely difficult for any competing broker. Traders who are using Saxo Bank have the chance of investing in a wide range of financial products as per their risk tolerance and preference. Saxo Bank also has competitive spreads on offer, which can be enjoyed by traders; 0.2 to 2 pips are quoted across the array of currency pairs. On the other hand, there is also a commission per trade in ECN accounts and it is charged according to the volume of transactions conducted by a trader in a month and their account balance.

Accounts that have transactions falling under $600 per month will have standard commission of about $60 for every million traded. However, if transactions are at least a minimum of $600 per month, the commission will be reduced to $30 per million traded, which is incredibly competitive. Larger traders who conduct transactions of about $2,000 per month can enjoy an even lower commission of $20 for every million traded.

Deposits and Withdrawals

A minimum deposit requirement of $5,000 is applicable when you are using Saxo Bank and a leverage of 1:100 for the Forex market and a maximum of 1:20 for indices, stocks and other products applies. While there is no denying that Saxo Bank is an excellent broker to trade with, some traders might consider the deposit requirements high as other competing brokers don’t have such high requirements for ECN accounts. Nonetheless, when you do deposit $5,000, you get the opportunity of opening one of the top brokerages account in the entire market, which can be immensely handy for diversification of your investment portfolio.

Saxo Bank, as compared to others, is a relatively large Forex broker, which means that it has access to numerous resources. As far as methods for funding and withdrawal are concerned, Saxo Banks allows its users to opt for bank transfer, which can take anywhere between 1 to 5 days to complete. If you want to go for something faster, you can use credit and debit cards for this purpose as it accepts both Visa and MasterCard. However, a fee ranging between 0.5 percent and 2.5 percent is applicable in this case.

Trading Platforms

A significant portion of Saxo Bank’s operating capital and trading resources have been used in the development of its proprietary trading platform. This can provide direct market access to all traders through their own security protocols. Two different Saxo Bank platform options are at your disposal; first, there is the SaxoTrader installable platform and the second option is the SaxoTraderGo browser-based interface. The former is regarded as the ideal and recommended option for professional traders because it can provide them with access to all the features and functionalities that you would expect from a dedicated trading terminal. In this way, these traders are able to enjoy greater control over their trading strategies and don’t have to cut any corners.

One thing that traders using SaxoTrader should note is that it is only available as a standalone desktop terminal and would not be suitable for mobile traders. If you are a mobile trader, you can go with the Saxo Bank mobile apps that can be used on both Android and iOS devices. Furthermore, mobile traders can also use their phone’s browsers for accessing their accounts, but this might have a few limitations as opposed to the conventional desktop trading platform. As mentioned above, a demo account is also provided by the broker for a period of one month, which can be used for learning about the trading platform and Saxo Bank’s product offerings.

This feature can be quite useful for new traders as it allows them to familiarize themselves with the platform and the market before they invest any real money.

Research

For accessing research, you can use the desktop or web Saxo trading platforms or it also operates a separate page, tradingfloor.com, which can also be used for this purpose. You will be able to access equity research through the web platform and can also read opinions and news from strategists on Saxo. In addition, you can search for trade signals and go over the macro events calendar. Keeping in mind that Saxo Bank is a retail brokerage service, the equity research panel it has to offer is downright brilliant. On the front page of equity research, you will be able to take a look at the losers and winners of the larger stock exchanges, see calendar events, view related trade signals and read the latest trading news.

The trading panel or the search panel can also be used for obtaining detailed fundamental data on individual stocks. You can also filter the results according to valuation, industry and country.

Education

Saxo Bank is aware that it is important for traders to have an in-depth knowledge about the trading world if they wish to succeed. Therefore, it has introduced a Saxo Bank Academy where a host of educational programs are available to the traders to help them in enhancing their knowledge and skills. There are a variety of courses available and you can go over them to see what appeals to you. Moreover, there are also basic lessons on the different assets that Saxo Bank has to offer such as forex, stocks, indices, bonds, CFDs and even futures. These lessons comprise of an explainer video, a guide for getting started and a quiz for testing your understanding.

Additionally, Saxo Bank offers pdf videos on a plethora of topics, which include some key aspects that every trader should be familiar with.

Customer Support

As far as custsomer support is concerned, you can reach Saxo Bank’s representatives via phone or through email. They also have a live chat option that can be access 24 hours a day. The agents are responsive and helpful and you can get support in your required language.

Conclusion

Saxo Bank is an excellent broker that offers reliable and trustworthy service. It boasts one of the best trading platforms backed by great customer service and research. Also, its product portfolio also contributes to its popularity because Saxo Bank covers all important international markets as well as the notable asset classes that most traders are interested in.

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Is 4XFX Regulated? 4XFX Regulation | 4XFX Review

Is 4XFX Regulated? 4XFX Licensing and Regulation

Since the 4XFX brokerage is so new, they have not yet acquired licensing or regulation from any reputable regulatory authorities. Nevertheless we like their website and educational material, plus the fact that clients can deposit using Bitcoin – and the fact that they are currently having a Bitcoin raffle promotion for new traders.

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(4XFX review video by FXEmpire)

4XFX Review

An online trading brokerage, 4XFX offers traders the ability of trading a wide array of financial assets across global financial markets. The company was launched recently in March of this year and is already catering to the needs of approximately 46,000 traders in 76 countries. Operated by GRF EUROPE OÜ, 4XFX operates out of its headquarters that are located in Harju maakond, Tallinn, Kesklinna linnaosa, Roosikrantsi tn 2-K397, 10119, Estonia. There are numerous brokerages to choose from and since 4XFX is a new one, people always have a hard time when making a decision. Why go for 4XFX? Let’s take a look at what this brokerage has to offer:

Trading Platform

There is not one, two, but three highly sophisticated trading platforms that you can use when you sign up on 4XFX. The first option is the brokerage’s own proprietary web-based trading platform that can be accessed from any computer or mobile device through the web browser. There is no need for any sophisticated hardware, no downloads or installation and the platform is still able to operate smoothly. The official name of this trading platform is 4XFX Web Trader and the functionality and design is undoubtedly unrivaled and advanced.

One thing you will notice immediately is that it is quite user-friendly and can provide an intuitive experience to traders. There is an advanced charting package offered that boasts 8 different time frames, 6 different chart types and a huge list of technical indicators. This platform is more than enough for all kinds of traders. The other two platforms you can find on 4XFX are the popular MetaTrader 4 (MT4) that can be downloaded and a state of the art mobile trading app.

Markets

As stated above, 4XFX provides you with access to an extensive array of financial products that can be traded across global financial markets. You can choose to trade some of the best forex currency pairs on 4XFX, indices, commodities such as gold and oil, stocks of some renowned companies and cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.

Security and Fairness

A close look at the 4XFX services reveal that the brokerage is a reputable one that provides reliable and safe online trading services. They use the highest levels of encryption and security to ensure the confidential data remains safe and out of the hands of unauthorized third parties. They have also implemented some strong regulatory policies such as AML (Anti-Money Laundering) and Know your Customer (KYC).

Account Types

One of the most appealing aspects of 4XFX is that it offers multiple account types to traders. Why is this a good thing? It is considered a positive aspect because the different account types have been designed for traders with varying levels of experience and background. There are four primary options that you will find at your disposal when you sign up on 4XFX:

Starter: This account is designed for traders who are just starting out in the trading world and want to gain experience. It provides them with access to a personal account manager, basic training, fixed spreads, an expert advisor, customer support 24/5, access to forex news, knowledge center access, hedging, resource center access and leverage of 1:100.

Silver: Traders who possess some basic knowledge, but need to be seasoned can sign up for this account. It offers all the features associated with the Starter account, along with webinars that can provide you with additional knowledge.

Gold: The third account is for traders who have some experience, but are looking to invest seriously instead of just a hobby. The leverage is increased to 1:200 in this account and you also get access to features such as daily market alerts as well as one-on-one training.

Platinum: This account type has been designed for VIP traders and can be used for making ambitious trades and provides access to all features available on 4XFX. There is a personal bonus policy they can enjoy, along with personal trading conditions that can enhance and improve the trading experience.

Support

The customer support provided at 4XFX is one of the best you will find in the market as the brokerage has hired representatives who are well-informed and knowledgeable about the market. They provide quick and accurate responses that are concise and customized as per the question asked by the traders. You will not find any generic responses here, which is a good thing. You can use telephone and email for getting in touch with customer support representatives five days a week. There is some educational content also available to provide assistance to the traders.

Fees and Commission

Another aspect where 4XFX is very appealing to all traders is in terms of their fees and commission. They charge the lowest commissions in the market and their trading fee is also on the reasonable end, which is exactly what traders are looking for.

Deposits and Withdrawal

The convenience and ease of traders is priority for 4XFX due to which they have provided a wide variety of payment methods for both deposits and withdrawal. The only rule you should remember is that the method you use for deposit should also be used for withdrawing money from the brokerage service. No charges are applicable on making deposits and some of the methods you can use are:

  • Bank wire transfers
  • Debit and credit cards, which include Delta, Solo, Visa, MasterCard, Maestro, Visa Electron, Maestro UK (Switch) and Diners.
  • There are some e-wallets that can also be used and these include some popular ones such as Neteller and Skrill.
  • Cryptocurrency deposits are also offered on the platform, which is a huge plus.

Is 4XFX a Scam?

4XFX is a legit broker and is not a scam. It a a legit trading brokerage. Overall, the 4XFX brokerage service comes off as polished and streamlined. Even newbies will not have a problem in acclimating to the platform because it is smooth and can be used without any hassle. The sign up process is simple and this has helped 4XFX in developing a positive reputation in the market. The overall features are sophisticated and can provide a speedy trading experience that’s very uncommon in the market.

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Is IG Markets Regulated? IG Markets Regulation | IG Markets Review

Is IG Markets Regulated? IG Markets Licensing and Regulation

One of the largest brokers in the world, IG Markets has about 14 offices that are spread over at total of five continents. The broker is currently servicing more than 185,000 active clients all over the world and is owned and operated by IG Markets Ltd. The broker was launched in 1974 as a vehicle for enabling individual retail investors to speculate on the price of gold. It was the first financial-spread betting company in the world and since then, it has retained the title of market leader. The headquarters of IG Markets are located in the United Kingdom and it is registered as a business in the country with license number 04008957. While IG Markets offers its services all over the world, there are some areas that are not included such as the United States and Belgium.

They do not provide their services to any country or jurisdiction where the use or distribution would be contrary to local regulation and law.

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Regulation and Reputation

When you are looking for an online brokerage to deal with, it is a given that the most important factors would be reputation and regulation. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) of the United Kingdom licenses and regulates IG Markets. Furthermore, they are licensed and registered in every country where they have established their offices. For instance, they are supervised by the ACIS in Australia and the FSB in South Africa. Some other countries where they have their representative office include Dubai, Luxemborg, Tokyo, Italy, Spain, France, Geneva, Singapore, Ireland and Germany. The primary regulatory agencies of all these regions are responsible for regulating IG Markets.

As far as the reputation of IG is concerned, it definitely doesn’t fall short in this regard either. For over 40 years, the company has been working in this market and has definitely proven itself to be the best. It has succeeded in shaping the world of online brokerage by playing the role of the top competitor and has taken home a number of top awards in different areas such as their technology, trading platforms, outstanding customer support and lots more. Winning these awards and constantly making innovations has allowed IG Markets to maintain and boost their reputation in the industry.

IG Markets Review

Assets and Markets

Both standard as well as direct market access (ECN) accounts can be found at IG Markets, which give traders the option of investing in commodities, Forex, shares, CFDs, interest rates, Bitcoins, futures, bonds, options, indices, shares and other ETFs. Furthermore, when traders decide to open a trading account on IG Markets, they will also be able to participate in the world of spread betting. This is essentially like forex trading, but is tax-free, which makes it quite worthwhile. There are no stamp duties or taxes imposed on spread betting in the UK, which makes it an excellent option for investors who are in search of cost-effective trading solutions.

Other than traditional markets, you can also use IG Markets for binary options trading and it can be used for making fixed profits by betting in the direction of trends. An initial deposit of $300 or its equivalent in other currencies is required for making an account on IG Markets. Unfortunately, no IG bonus is offered for now other than the refer-a-friend bonus, which is a rewards-based points system and requires you to refer friends to IG. You can redeem these reward points for electronics and gifts or other promotional materials given by IG through their seasonal promotions and offers.

The fact that no deposit bonuses are available doesn’t come off as a surprise because of its regulatory status as the bonus terms and conditions can often create a horde of complications in the broker-client relationship.

Trading Accounts

Two types of trading accounts are offered by IG Markets to its traders in order to keep things simple and uncomplicated. There is also a live demo account that can be used by beginners and newbies for testing the software as well as the trading platform. A standard account is offered for the everyday trader whereas there is a more premium account available for high net worth traders. The minimum trading amount for a standard account is $1 whereas the maximum is $300. Apart from these two accounts, a DMA account can also be opened by smart traders, which can be used for trading market depth through the use of algorithms. Moreover, this provides traders with the option of participating in pre-market and post-market auctions.

Commission and Fees

A simple fee and commissions structure has been adopted by IG Markets. If the number of trades in a month fall between the range of 0 and 9, the commission charged on every trade in £8. The commission is reduced to £5 if more than 10 trades are made in a month. The rate is also reduced to £5 for clients who have more than one account on IG Markets such as for share dealing, Smart Portfolio, CFD, FSB etc. A quarterly custody fee is also charged by the broker, which is about £24 per quarter and it is applicable on its ISA and share dealing accounts. Any commissions that have been paid during the quarter will automatically be applied against this charge.

If traders deal three times or more across multiple accounts, they will not be charged anything and the same is true for those who have more than £15,000 worth of assets in their IG Smart Portfolio accounts when the quarter ends. Overall, the share dealing rates charged by IG are less than those of its close competitors.

Deposit Options

There are a total of three options given to traders for funding their account on IG Markets. The first option is bank transfer, which should come from an account of the same name that’s being used on your IG investment account. The funds will be transferred without any extra charges or fee, but the transaction will take at least three days to complete. Debit or credit cards can also be used for funding your account, but there is a minimum deposit applicable in this case, which is $300 or its equivalent in other currencies. The accepted debit cards include Visa-Delta, Maestro, Electron and Solo. European debit card funding doesn’t incur any charges whereas a 1.5 percent fee is applied to non-European ones. The accepted credit cards are Visa and MasterCard and a transfer fee of 1.5 percent is applied in this case as well. The last funding option is PayPal, which also has a 1.5 percent fee and a minimum deposit requirement.

Withdrawal Options

There are two options provided when you want to withdraw funds from your account on IG Markets. You can choose bank transfer, which will take three business days. A withdrawal fee of £15 is applicable in the case of international transfers. A same day sterling payment can be made in the UK, CHAPS, and this will also cost £15. Credit and debit cards can also be used for withdrawal, but these transactions will take three to five business days. The minimum amount that you can withdraw is $150 or its equivalent in other currencies.

Platform and Tools

One of the most impressive features of the IG online trading account are the IG trading platforms and tools. The competition and demands from the spread-betting along with the short-term trading strategies that are used by the spread-betting community have made it necessary to provide increasingly advanced and complex trading platforms and tools. IG Markets have their own proprietary web-based trading platform, which has been recognized as the best in its league. It has received considerable praise and appreciation from the industry. This web-based platform is boasts advanced monitoring tools and customizable layouts. It is also quite user-friendly and can be navigated with ease. For traders who are new to the market and don’t wish to use IG Markets’ proprietary platform, there is the option of using the popular MetaTrader 4 series.

There are advanced trading tools available that can be incredibly useful for traders. There are pop-up charts that enable traders to access 21 technical indicators and all of these have a number of parameters that can be adjusted. In addition, there are nine drawing tools that can be used, which include Fibonacci extensions and retracements and trend lines that can be customized. Layout customization is also an option, as mentioned above, and you can also add calendar events. The technical analysis that you can get through these tools is one of the most impressive as compared to other competitors in this arena.

However, an important thing that should be noted is that there are a ton of other tools available on the platform that cannot be found on others. Not only can you set price alerts, but you can also set them on a number of indicators and customize them even further. You can also opt for economic calendar alerts. These alerts can be shown on the platform or can also be sent to you via email or mobile push. As opposed to other platforms, IG Markets is quite flexible in dealing with previous trades, current orders and open positions. You can view working orders and open positions on the chart whereas new orders can be executed directly from there instead of having to go to the account section.

Last, but definitely not the least, IG Markets also has access to technical analysis research and trading tools from a third party. They are provided by Trading Central and Auto Chartist. The former provides technical analysis report whereas the latter provides automated charting patterns and trading signals.

Mobile Trading

If web-based platforms are not suitable for you, IG Markets give you the option of downloading a mobile app on your Android or iOS smartphone. You can also find a dedicated IG Markets app for your iPad. A separate education app has also been developed by IG by the name of IG Academy. All these apps provided by IG are extremely user-friendly and provide traders with access to a number of tools that are given on the desktop trading platform. Furthermore, you can manage alerts and watch lists from your device and can synchronize it with the desktop version.

There is another great extra feature, which has turned out to be quite impressive. You can get direct access to the IG Community where discussions can be held with other traders. Also, it is considered a wonderful way of sharing ideas on a mobile app and helps traders in keeping up with the news.

Education

The educational content that’s provided by IG Markets is quite impressive. It is different from the others in the way that it is focused more on a macroeconomic and broader trading outlook instead of the usual microeconomic analysis and individual stocks. As mentioned above, a separate education app has been developed by IG, which can be downloaded on your smartphones. Here, you will be able to access courses that guide you on every step of the way and start from basic trading. You can also find those on intermediate trading and the educational offerings begin with ‘Introduction to the financial markets’. Other than this, you can also find ‘The basics of technical analysis’ and even in-depth courses such as ‘Planning and Risk Management’.

All of these courses are divided in modules and traders can keep track of the courses and modules they have covered. Traders who are new are offered a personalized and individual walk through the trading platform and are shown how to conduct a trade. Traders can also gain access to a number of in-person webinars and seminars and there is also a 30-minute webinar held every Monday. Plus, there are also educational videos that are arranged by topic.

Customer Support

In the area of customer support, IG tends to excel and has received numerous awards for it. The direct support options that can be found are email, live chat, social media and telephone. Due to multiple support options, traders can expect to get quick responses in a number of languages.

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Is eToro Regulated? eToro Regulation | eToro Review

Is eToro Regulated? eToro Licensing and Regulation

eToro was founded in 2006 by two brothers, Yoni and Ronen Assia and partner David Ring in Tel Avis, Israel. They launched the brokerage with the vision of creating a popular financial investment and trading platform that works for everyone. Since its launch nearly 12 years ago, eToro has grown significantly and is currently ranked as one of the top online forex brokers and also the top social trading networks. As far as regulation and oversight is concerned, eToro (Europe) Ltd. is a registered CIF or Cypriot Investment firm and is based in Limassol, Cyprus. The company’s registration number is HE200585. CySEC or the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission is responsible for regulating eToro and it does so under the license number 109/10.

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eToro also has its offices in London, United Kingdom and is a registered UK firm with the registration number 7973792. The Financial Conduct Authority or FCA is responsible for authorizing and regulating eToro UK under the firm’s reference number 583263. Both eToro (Europe) Ltd. and eToro (UK) Ltd. operate under and comply with the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive or MiiFID. Currently, the platform has more than 6 million users spread over in 170 countries around the world and this has allowed it to cinch the position of industry leader.

eToro Review

There is no denying that eToro has gained a lot of recognition for being a key player in the cryptocurrency industry, but this is not all the platform has done. For more than a decade, eToro has headed the fintech revolution and has built up its reputation of being the leading social trading platform all over the globe. It may have started as a general trading platform, but has expanded considerably since then as it has added cryptocurrencies and other trading instruments for keeping up with the growing demands and changing markets. The three entrepreneurs behind eToro didn’t just want to make trading accessible; they were also interested in reducing the dependency on banks and other financial institutions.

The trading platform called WebTrader was launched by eToro in 2009 that offers a wide range of professional tools to traders of different skill levels. The brokerage took a huge step forward in 2011 with the introduction of OpenBook. This was the first social trading platform in the world and came with the then-new feature of CopyTrader. Through this trader, successful traders can be copied by pretty much ayone. eToro added stocks to the other offerings on its platforms like commodities and currencies, in 2012. A mobile app was also launched by eToro in 2013 for both Android and iOS devices, which also helped in expanding the platform’s reach.

This is also when eToro made its move towards cryptocurrencies and made it possible for traders to trade Bitcoins through CFDs.

The platform also made updates to its interface in 2015 in order to provide traders with a more innovative and intuitive experience. Another feature called CopyFunds was also added by eToro in 2016, which refers to managed portfolios that combine multiple assets or top traders in a market strategy. These are usually driven by machine-learning engines for maximizing returns. It wasn’t until January last year that eToro finally expanded its reach directly into the cryptocurrency market and it became possible for traders to trade a wide range of popular cryptocurrencies, such as Litecoin, Ethereum and XRP.

Trading Instruments

As far as the types of instruments that are available for trading on eToro, there is a host of options that investors can find when they opt for this particular platform to meet their trading needs. You will find a wide selection of indices, international stocks, currency pairs (forex), commodities, precious metals as well as Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs). As aforementioned, the pioneer cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, was introduced by eToro as early as 2014. However, as compared to the other brokers in the industry where it can be purchased or sold as a currency, eToro only allows traders to trade it as a CFD derivative.

Put simply, it means that traders who are using the social trading platform of eToro will buy and sell the cryptocurrency as a financial security that tracks the Bitcoin price in the open market.

The other cryptocurrencies that have been introduced on eToro include Litecoin, Ethereum Classic, Dash, Bitcoin Cash, Ripple and Ethereum.

Unique Features

The all-inclusive trading platform as well as the excellent educational platform of eToro are not the only features that have allowed it to gain the popularity it holds today. The most striking feature that eToro has to offer to its traders is its online financial trading community, which is amongst the largest in the world. Recently, eToro also made some replacements, which include its two popular OpenBook and WebTrader trading platforms. In place of these two, eToro chose to introduce a new all-in-one platform, which is designed to provide traders access to all its services across a wide range of devices.

Depending on the country and the region where the trader resides, there is a minimum first time deposit applicable when they sign up on eToro for an account and it ranges from $200 to $1,000. Not only does eToro provides traders with the option of opening a funded account, it also gives them access to a practice or demo account that can be used for signing up without incurring any cost. This practice account can prove to be immensely useful, especially for new traders, because it gives potential traders the opportunity of testing the trading platform without putting them under any financial obligation. They are provided with an initial deposit worth $100,000 in the form of virtual currency.

Apart from the feature of practice account and the standard funded account, there is also an Islamic account offered by eToro that carries a minimum deposit requirement of $1,000. Similar to a large number of other online forex brokers, no commission is applicable on traders when you are using eToro. Instead, the company chooses to earn by quoting a slightly wider dealer spread to their customers as this can serve as compensation. As far as the real time dealing spreads are concerned, they begin at 2 pips for the USD/JPY pair and three pips for USD/CHF, EUR/USD and USD/CAD.

In the case of currency pairs such as AUD/USD and GBP/USD, you will see spreads of four pips whereas the spread for NZD/USD was about five pips wide. A spread of seven pips wide was available with USD/RUB pairs. Moving onto the dealing spreads in the case of other currency pairs that are not traded as popularly, they went as wide as 20 pips. As far as Bitcoin trades are concerned, the spreads are apparently 225 pips. From April 29th, 2018, eToro introduced real stocks on its trading platform and moved on from trading them as CFDs just like it did in the case of Bitcoin.

This means that now all countries will be real stocks and CFDs will only remain for some countries, which include Macedonia, New Zealand, Nigeria, Afghanistan, Australia, Leone, Sierra, Myanamar, Congo Republic, Nauru, Belarus, Liberia, Zimbabwe and Iraq. From 1st, August, 2018, eToro also became fully complaint with the new rules by ESMA.

Trading Platform

When eToro was introduced, their original trading platform had been primarily designed for inexperienced and new traders and included graphic animations for depicting currencies participating in a tug of water or racing against each other. Since then, the previous platforms of the broker have been consolidated into an award-winning and all-in-one eToro platform. You can also find it on both Android and iOS smartphones and it integrates all the features that were offered previously. Currently, the eToro app can be downloaded through Google Play or App Store. Some new features have also been introduced by eToro such as CopyPortfolio.

Deposits and Withdrawals

As trading on eToro can only be done in the form of US dollars, it means that whatever currency you use for depositing funds will be converted into USD upon receipt. As mentioned before, the minimum amount that you need to deposit in order to start trading through the eToro account is between the range of $200 and $1,000. The amount is actually subject to the regional regulations of a customer’s account. For instant, the minimum deposits on Neteller range from $200 to $1,000 and can go as high as $10,000. In the case of GiroPay and Webmoney, there is a requirement of $200 to $1,000 minimum and a $30,000 and $50,000 maximum deposit, respectively. There is a maximum deposit of $5,000 that can be made on Yandex, based in Russia.

For the convenience of their clients, eToro gives its clients the option of funding their account and making deposits through Visa, MasterCard, bank wire transfer, Diner’s Club debit and credit cards, Skrill Limited UK, PayPal, Webmoney UK, Wirecard, Neteller, Wirecard i.e. Wire and Credit Card, Yandex and China Union Pay. In the case of withdrawals, the trader has to fill out a withdrawal form in the website’s Cashier’s section and under the ‘Withdrawal’ tab. You have to enter the amount on the form and you will then be informed about the withdrawal process via email. Typically, funds can be withdrawn through PayPal, credit card or bank transfer.

When withdrawals are being made for the first time, it is essential for a trader to provide a clear copy of their Passport, which includes their written signature. They also need to submit a clear copy of their utility bill, which should not be older than three months and should have been sent to your address of residence. Moreover, if the initial deposit for funding the account was made via credit card, traders are also required to submit a clear copy of both sides of the credit card as well. A fee of $25 is charged by eToro for every withdrawal. It can take up to five days for the withdrawals to be processed and their might be further delays if you are using third party withdrawal methods.

Customer Support

In regard to customer support, you can get assistance from eToro 24/5 via telephone and email, from Monday to Friday. The response time in the case of email is about 48 hours. A live chat function has not been introduced by eToro as yet, but the feature of a personalized digital service called ‘Nano Rep’ has been provided. In order to access this feature, all you have to do is click on the button that can be found on the bottom left corner of the customer service page at eToro.

There is also a ‘Customer Service Wall’ that can be found on eToro, where traders can use a forum type format for getting in touch with the platform’s customer service. Most of the queries regarding customer service are handled by referring traders to Online Guides that can be found in eToro’s Knowledge base. In the situation where a client wants to talk to a representative, a ticket is opened up and the customer is contacted by a representative as quickly as possible.

Customers have the option of choosing their representative by clicking on their photograph, which is accompanied by a brief bio on the customer service team page at eToro. As of now, customer service can be available at eToro in several languages including Spanish, German, English, Italian and French.

Conclusion

eToro is a prominent online broker and is at the forefront of social investing, which has garnered it a lot of popularity amongst traders and investors. With their newly integrated eToro social investment and trading platform, and also their mobile app, the brokerage is able to provide traders with great opportunities in this exciting and unique new field. Furthermore, there is also a Trading Academy, a Trading eCourse, a blog and live webinars that can come in handy for educating new and novice traders.

It is easy to use eToro’s proprietary online and social investment platform and there is a free practice account available, which is a huge plus. The successful clients on eToro are also rewarded in the form of a great following and cash prizes when they enter competitions.

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