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While Australia’s leading brokers are all regulated by ASIC, many industry giants are regulated by other reputable global entities. Brokers can be challenging to compare, so we have tested and listed the leading brokers in the world for Aussie traders. Australians are not legally required to select a Forex broker that is ASIC regulated, so the best Forex brokers available in Australia extend beyond those regulated locally.

To test each broker, we opened a live account and verified the broker regulation and the choice of trading platforms. We assessed the quality of the learning materials, as traders benefit greatly from a variety of trading courses, additional market analysis and an unlimited demo account. We also calculated the trading cost, as a lower overall trading cost, the greater opportunity to profit. These are the best Forex brokers in Australia for 2021, according to our testing and our research.

English

Best Forex Brokers in Australia 2021

Last updated on 12 May 2021
Updated 12 May 2021
by Editorial Director Jeffrey Cammackby Jeffrey Cammack
Jeffrey Cammack
All Brokers Regulated
All Brokers Regulated
by Trusted Authoritiesby Trusted Authorities
Trusted
1
FP Markets
Min. Deposit
AUD 100
4.234.23
Min. Spread
0 pips
Fx Pairs
60+
REGULATED BY
Overall Rating
11110.54.23/ 5
AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.10 pips with 6 USD commission round turn on the trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4, MT5 & IRESS platforms supported. FP Markets is regulated by CySEC and ASIC.
2
Black Bull Markets
Min. Deposit
USD 200
3.423.42
Min. Spread
0.20 pips
Fx Pairs
31
REGULATED BY
Overall Rating
1110.503.42/ 5
AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.80 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 500:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & MT5 platforms supported. Blackbull Markets is regulated by the FMA & the FSA-Seychelles.
3
Pepperstone
Min. Deposit
AUD 100
4.614.61
Min. Spread
0 pips
Fx Pairs
80+
REGULATED BY
Overall Rating
11110.54.61/ 5
AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.09 pips with 7 USD commission round turn on the trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4, MT5 & cTrader platforms supported. Pepperstone is regulated by the FCA, ASIC, and the DFSA.
4
IG Markets
Min. Deposit
AUD 250
4.694.69
Min. Spread
0.60 pips
Fx Pairs
93
REGULATED BY
Overall Rating
11110.54.69/ 5
AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.60 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4, ProRealTime and L2 Dealer platforms supported. IG Markets Group is regulated by FCA, ASIC, and the FSCA.
5
MarketsX
Min. Deposit
AUD 250
4.394.39
Min. Spread
0.60 pips
Fx Pairs
50+
REGULATED BY
Overall Rating
11110.54.39/ 5
AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.60 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & MT5 platforms supported. MarketsX is regulated by CySEC, ASIC, and the FSCA.
6
AvaTrade
Min. Deposit
AUD 100
4.484.48
Min. Spread
0.90 pips
Fx Pairs
50+
REGULATED BY
Overall Rating
11110.54.48/ 5
AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.90 pips. Minimum initial deposit 100 AUD. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & MT5 platforms supported. AvaTrade Group regulated by ASIC, FSCA, B.V.I FSC & FSA.
7
eToro
Min. Deposit
AUD 50
3.693.69
Min. Spread
1 pips
Fx Pairs
52
REGULATED BY
Overall Rating
1110.503.69/ 5
AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 1 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. Only eToro proprietary trading platform supported. eToro is regulated by CySEC, FCA, and ASIC.
8
Admiral Markets
Min. Deposit
AUD 100
4.244.24
Min. Spread
0.10 pips
Fx Pairs
40+
REGULATED BY
Overall Rating
11110.54.24/ 5
AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.50 pips with 0.0 USD commission round turn on the trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4, MT5 & MT4 Supreme Edition platforms supported. Admiral Markets is regulated by ASIC, CySEC, and the FCA.
9
Axitrader
Min. Deposit
AUD 5
4.344.34
Min. Spread
0 pips
Fx Pairs
80+
REGULATED BY
Overall Rating
11110.54.34/ 5
AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 1.20 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & MT5 platforms supported. Axi Group is regulated by the FCA, ASIC and the DFSA
10
CMC Markets
Min. Deposit
AUD 5
4.694.69
Min. Spread
0.70 pips
Fx Pairs
330
REGULATED BY
Overall Rating
11110.54.69/ 5
AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.70 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 500:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & CMC Proprietary platforms supported. CMC Markets is regulated by the ASIC, FCA, MAS and the FMA.
11
easyMarkets
Min. Deposit
AUD 200
3.983.98
Min. Spread
0.90 pips
Fx Pairs
103
REGULATED BY
Overall Rating
1110.503.98/ 5
AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 1.80 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & the proprietary easyMarkets platform are supported. easyMarkets is regulated by CySEC, ASIC, and the FSA in Seychelles.

Best Forex Brokers in Australia

To test these Forex brokers, we opened both demo accounts and real accounts, set up the trading software, read the educational material, deposited and traded A$350 of our money, and created all kinds of trouble for the customer service teams. Plus we put the withdrawal procedures to the test to see how long it took to process and receive our money. While experimenting with these brokers, we rate the quality of their financial regulation, trading platform choice and read the fine print to get a grasp of the trading conditions and how transparent the broker is with sharing them. In our test we investigated:

Broker Regulation: Regulators keep an eye on Forex brokers to make sure they’re behaving legally and ethically. Some regulators, such as ASIC, the FCA, and CySEC, are better at keeping brokers honest than others. ASIC is one of the leading and most respected regulatory agencies in the world. 

Broker Trading Conditions and Costs: Forex brokers should charge traders as little as possible. Spreads should be narrow and minimum deposits should be low. Trading execution should be lightning-fast and with little or no intervention. Forex brokers should also publish their spreads, execution policy, and a list of all CFD assets available. 

Broker Education and Analysis: Brokers should offer beginner traders a coherent and well-structured trading course alongside a demo account. Brokers should supply detailed market analysis to highlight trading opportunities and provide a complete learning experience.

Broker Trading Platform: Brokers will have their own trading platform or provide support for a third-party platform, such as MT4, MT5, or cTrader. Some brokers will do both. Most Forex traders generally have a platform preference, so brokers with multiple platforms are more likely to have the platform a trader wants to use.


These are best Forex brokers in the Australia for 2021

FP Markets – Best Forex Broker in Australia

FP Markets supports the MT4 version and the newer and more feature-filled version MT5. For professional traders, the Iress platform is available. This is a customisable web-based platform that offers the trader custom alerts, news feeds and a range of other options to fine-tune the trading experience. 

With a minimum deposit of 100 USD, traders can open a commission-free trading account with 60+ FX pairs, metals, indices and commodities to trade. Averages spreads are 0.1 pips (EUR/USD), 0.2 pips (GBP/USD) and 0.1 pips (USD/JPY), and leverage up to 30:1 on Forex pairs. Commission on this account is 6 USD round turn, making the trading costs at the low end for the industry. 

The Traders Hub portal gives beginner CFD traders the education they need to get started and includes eBooks, video tutorials and trading courses. This section also features market analysis, so traders get an expert opinion on current market movements and a view ahead into the week ahead. 

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Tight spreads
  • Good range of accounts
  • Great customer support
Cons
  • Expensive withdrawals
AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.10 pips with 6 USD commission round turn on the trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4, MT5 & IRESS platforms supported. FP Markets is regulated by CySEC and ASIC.

BlackBull Markets – Best Trading Conditions

BlackBull Markets is an ECN-only broker providing direct market access on the MT4 platform. BlackBull Markets offers three account types, the ECN Standard, ECN Prime and ECN Institutional. Leverage on all accounts is set at a maximum of 500:1. The ECN Standard Account has a minimum deposit of 200 USD and no commission, with a minimum spread of 0.8 pips. The ECN Prime Account has a minimum deposit of 2000 USD and spreads start at 0.1 pips. A commission is charged of 3 USD per lot per side (6 USD round-turn). The institutional account has a minimum deposit of 20,000 USD and spreads starting from 0.0 pips. This account is specifically for professional traders and commission is negotiable.

BlackBull Markets is a true ECN/STP broker and does not operate a dealing desk. Equinix servers based in New York (NY4), London (LD5) and Tokyo (TY3) allow for lightning-fast market access, while Straight Through Processing prevents slippage and failed executions that can occur at other ECN brokers.

Pros
  • Tight spreads
  • Good for beginners
  • Wide range of assets
Cons
  • Expensive withdrawals
  • Limited market analysis
AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.80 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 500:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & MT5 platforms supported. Blackbull Markets is regulated by the FMA & the FSA-Seychelles.

Pepperstone – Best ECN Trading Execution

Pepperstone is the leading ASIC regulated ECN/STP Forex broker. Most trades on Pepperstone have execution in less than 30ms, which is ideal for scalpers and clients who run expert advisors. Both accounts offer market execution with some of the tightest spreads in the industry – the Razor Account has spreads from 0 pips for the EUR/USD and 7 USD commission. Furthermore, Pepperstone supports all three major trading platforms – MT4, MT5 and cTrader.

Pepperstone’s award-winning, 24-hour support provides the foundation for its excellent customer service, where personalised assistance is available via several methods. For beginners interested in ECN trading, Pepperstone’s also has one of the better education sections offered by a market execution broker.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Tight spreads
  • Great platform choice
  • Wide range of assets
Cons
    AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.09 pips with 7 USD commission round turn on the trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4, MT5 & cTrader platforms supported. Pepperstone is regulated by the FCA, ASIC, and the DFSA.

    IG Markets – Best CFD Trading Account

    IG Markets is the world’s largest CFD broker by revenue and listed on the LSE and a member of the FTSE 250, giving IG Markets a stricter layer of oversight than most regulated brokers. Yearly audits and compliance reports to the LSE and the FCA provide a high level of oversight on all CFD trading. 

    IG Markets offers a single CFD account type is offered. Forex trading is commission-free, and spreads start at 0.6 pips on the EUR/USD. Other instruments also available through the same account include commodities, indices, cryptocurrencies, over 16,000 shares and ETFs, options, interest rates and bonds. Negative balance protection is provided to all clients, and all funds are kept in segregated accounts.

    The IG Academy has structured courses for beginner, intermediate and advanced traders and daily classroom-style lessons. Market analysis is updated regularly by the IG Markets research team of finance professionals. 

    Pros
    • Well regulated
    • Tight spreads
    • Great platform choice
    • Excellent education
    • Excellent market analysis
    Cons
    • High minimum deposit
    AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.60 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4, ProRealTime and L2 Dealer platforms supported. IG Markets Group is regulated by FCA, ASIC, and the FSCA.

    Marketsx – Best Proprietary Trading Platform

    Marketsx is a trading platform operated by Markets.com that offers traders fast, commission-free trading with spreads as tight as most ECN brokers. Marketsx offers a large variety of tradeable instruments. Over 2000 global shares, 50+ currency pairs, 41 global indices, 27 commodities, 60 ETFs, 7 cryptocurrencies, and 4 government bonds. Spreads start at 0.60 pips on major FX pairs with no commission and leverage of 30:1.

    The platform is based on native design for iOS and Android, providing a smoother and more stable trading experience. The Marketsx app has built-in advanced charting – trendlines, channels, pitchforks, and Fibonacci Retracements. The Marketsx trading tools menu features a range of tools that crunch big data from leading analysts, hedge funds, and commentators to give traders better insight into the market. Each tool has integrated buy and sell buttons so traders can act instantly upon the information presented. In the chart view, traders can see their orders, related instruments, and open positions with a single click.

    Pros
    • Well regulated
    • Tight spreads
    • Wide range of assets
    • Fast and free withdrawals
    Cons
    • High minimum deposit
    AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.60 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & MT5 platforms supported. MarketsX is regulated by CySEC, ASIC, and the FSCA.

    AvaTrade – Best Mobile Trading Experience

    Winner of the award for the best Forex broker of 2020, AvaTrade offers Australian forex traders a preeminent mobile trading experience. Avatrade spreads are some of the tightest for a commission-free account with a 100 USD minimum deposit – as low as 0.9 pips on the EUR/USD. Maximum leverage is set at 1:400 on MT4 and MT5, which include EA’s, indicators, scalping, hedging, and provides free access to the integrated Trading Central dashboard for both platforms.

    The AvaProtect tool available in the mobile app enhanced AvaTrade’s reputation as a client-focused broker, allowing traders to purchase loss protection for a time. Any losses during that time are fully refunded, but any profits are the traders to keep. 

    Pros
    • Good for beginners
    • Well regulated
    • Low minimum deposit
    Cons
    • Dealing desk
    • Limited market analysis
    AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.90 pips. Minimum initial deposit 100 AUD. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & MT5 platforms supported. AvaTrade Group regulated by ASIC, FSCA, B.V.I FSC & FSA.

    eToro – Best ASIC-regulated Copy Trading Broker

    eToro were the creators of the first social trading system and remains the leading social trading broker in Australia. eToro offers a free unlimited demo account on its proprietary platform, and for traders who want to start trading with a live account, the minimum deposit is 50 AUD. 

    eToro’s web-based platform, also available as a mobile app, is intuitive and easy to use. The complex trading features found on other platforms like MetaTrader and cTrader are either removed or are blended into the trading experience in a more natural way. This point-and-click platform is built for beginners and needs little introduction before opening trades. eToro lets traders copy individual traders or algorithmically managed investment portfolios following a selected strategy named CopyPortfolios.

    Pros
    • Well regulated
    • Good for beginners
    • Innovative trading tools
    Cons
    • Limited education
    • Wide spreads
    AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 1 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. Only eToro proprietary trading platform supported. eToro is regulated by CySEC, FCA, and ASIC.

    Admiral Markets – Best ASIC MT4 Broker

    Admiral Markets has four accounts, two of which focus on the MT4 platform – Trade.MT4 and Zero.MT4. Both MT4 trading accounts have a 100 AUD minimum deposit, a variety of CFD products to trade, including 37 and 45 currency pairs, respectively and attractive trading conditions. The Trade.MT4 account has a minimum spread from 0.10 pips with no commission and the Zero.MT4 account has spreads from 0 pips with commission varying between 1.8 to 3.0 USD per lot. The cost of trading 1 lot of EUR/USD with the Zero.MT4 account is 5 USD round turn, which is at the lower end of what other brokers can offer.

    Available for both demo and live accounts, MetaTrader Supreme, which is newly available for MT5 as well, has advancements in technical analysis, improved trading widgets, the trader terminal, charts and indicators that update the old standard versions of the software with both functionality and usability. 

    Pros
    • Well regulated
    • Excellent education
    • Wide range of assets
    Cons
    • Expensive withdrawals
    AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.50 pips with 0.0 USD commission round turn on the trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4, MT5 & MT4 Supreme Edition platforms supported. Admiral Markets is regulated by ASIC, CySEC, and the FCA.

    Axi – Best ECN broker on MT4

    Axi only offers support for the MT4 platform. This singular focus allows them to offer the best ECN MT4 experience with the help of the MT4 NexGen plugin that includes an advanced sentiment indicator, a correlation trader, a more intuitive terminal window, and an automated trade journal. Apart from MT4 NexGen, traders at Axi have access to a range of tools, including AutoChartist and PsyQuation – an AI diagnostic that tracks your trading style and coaches you into more profitable trades. VPS hosting is also available, along with all the trading algorithms which install on MT4.

    The ECN trading conditions come from Axi’s pricing model, which connects to over 20 liquidity sources, so traders experience less slippage and requotes than with a broker with a singular source. Spreads on the Pro Account start at 0 pips with a 7 USD per lot commission, and the leverage maximum is 30:1 for Australian traders.

    Pros
    • Low minimum deposit
    • Wide range of assets
    • Well regulated
    • Tight spreads
    Cons
    • Poor customer service
    • Limited demo account
    AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 1.20 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & MT5 platforms supported. Axi Group is regulated by the FCA, ASIC and the DFSA

    CMC Markets – Best ASIC Low-Deposit Broker

    Few brokers have a minimum deposit as low at 5 AUD, in exchange for all the features available at the brokerage. The company vision “to provide the most superior and unrivalled trading experience for our clients” definitely comes in at a reasonable level for beginner traders.

    While ASIC-regulated CMC Markets currently only offers a single live account, spreads are tighter than most of its competitors with a minimum spread for EUR/USD at 0.7 and GBP/USD at 0.9 (no commission per lot) keeping trading cost at 7 USD per lot. Max leverage is 500:1 , and margin rate is 0.20% on this account. 

    Pros
    • Well regulated
    • Tight spreads
    • Good for beginners
    • Excellent education
    • Excellent market analysis
    Cons
    • No swap-free account option
    AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.70 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 500:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & CMC Proprietary platforms supported. CMC Markets is regulated by the ASIC, FCA, MAS and the FMA.

    easyMarkets – Best Trading Tools

    Regulated by ASIC since 2003, easyMarkets states its values as simple, honest, and transparent. easyMarkets has always innovated, introducing tools like negative balance protection and guaranteed stop-loss back in 2001 – these tools are now industry standards. The minimum deposit is only 200 AUD, and the easyMarkets MT4 platform comes with a range of features and pre-installed indicators which connect to the bespoke trading tools.

    easyMarkets offers the unique Freeze Rate, dealCancellation and EasyTrade tools, all intended to help new traders manage their risk. Freeze Rate allows traders to freeze a price for a few seconds to make a trade, crucial in a volatile market. dealCancellation lets traders cancel a trade either one, three or even six hours after the client made the trade. EasyTrade is a simple trading tool that allows traders to set their risk level and hold a trade for a one, three, or six-hour period. A simple binary choice between up and down is all the trader needs to manage.

    Pros
    • Well regulated
    • Wide range of assets
    • Innovative trading tools
    Cons
    • Limited platform choice
    • Limited account options
    AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 1.80 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & the proprietary easyMarkets platform are supported. easyMarkets is regulated by CySEC, ASIC, and the FSA in Seychelles.

    How to Compare Forex Brokers

    Though Forex brokers might appear to be similar, they are quite different once you dig a little deeper. To make an effective comparison, our research team judges every Forex broker by the same standards:

    If you have any questions after reading through this guide, please get in touch with us in the comments at the bottom of the page or via our contact page.

    Forex Broker Fees and Trading Costs

    Forex brokers always charge fees for their services. The most obvious fee is the spread (the difference between the buy and sell price of a Forex pair) and some brokers also charge a commission per trade. But brokers also charge rollover fees, and some charge deposit and withdrawal fees. Finally, there is also the minimum deposit to consider. To find out your trading costs you will need a clear understanding of these fees.

    Spreads

    The spread is the difference between the buy and sell price of a currency pair and is measured in pips (the smallest amount by which a currency can change). The lower (or “tighter”) the spread, the less of your own money you will be spending when you trade.

    Brokers with wide spreads or unpublished spreads are marked down in our reviews. Good brokers will publish their spreads for all the currency pairs they offer. When researching a broker, be sure that they publish their spreads and that the spreads are “tight” for the currency pairs you want to trade. If you find a broker that does not publish its spreads you should be cautious.

    Some brokers have fixed spreads, meaning that they never change. Other brokers will have floating spreads which means that they can get lower or higher (“tighter” or “wider”), depending on market movements.

    Commission

    Some brokers may also charge a trading commission in addition to the spread. Brokers that charge a commission are known as ECN brokers; they provide “direct market access” and will have tighter floating spreads down to 0 pips. Commission varies between brokers, but the cost is usually between 4 USD – 7 USD per 100,000 USD traded.

    ECN brokers who charge more than 7 USD total commission and have average spreads over 0.3 pips should be avoided and we mark them down in our reviews.

    Some brokers will offer both standard accounts (with no commission and a wider spread) and ECN accounts (with a commission and a tight spread). If you decide to trade with an ECN account, you will want a low commission and an average spread close to 0 pips.

    Rollover Fees

    The rollover fee is a small fee charged by brokers for holding a trading position overnight. It is usually charged at 17:00 EST (New York time). This fee is based on the interbank interest rate for each currency in a currency pair. Sometimes these interest rates can work in your favour and you will gain interest on your position rather than be charged by the broker.

    All brokers will charge rollover fees. This fee can only be avoided by opening and closing your trades on the same day.

    Deposit and Withdrawal Fees

    Better brokers will charge no fees for deposits and withdrawals, and the worst brokers will have very high fees and delayed payouts. Brokers that charge high fees or take a long time to process withdrawals are marked down in our reviews. When you are looking for a new broker, always make sure to check the fees for deposits and withdrawals for your preferred payment method. Just because a broker charges fees does not mean that they are bad, but it is always something to be aware of.

    Most brokers will charge no fees for transactions via online payment systems like Skrill, Neteller or Ozow. Credit and debit card transactions are also often free, but bank wires will usually be charged by your bank for both deposits and withdrawals. Some brokers will charge a percentage of the deposit or withdrawal, which can get expensive if you make large deposits and withdrawals.

    Minimum Deposit

    Most brokers will require a minimum deposit to open a trading account. For some brokers this will be R70, for others, it may be R1500 or even R3000.  Larger deposits usually unlock improved trading conditions and other perks. We do not mark down brokers for having accounts with higher minimum deposits, but we do think it is important for beginner traders to have an account that is not too expensive to open. 

    What level of minimum deposit you are comfortable with depends on your financial situation.  But, brokers who expect beginner traders to spend a lot of money to open an account are being unfair.

    Broker Trading Conditions

    Forex brokers all have different trading conditions and they will affect your trading experience and trading costs.

    Apart from the spread, there are several other important trading conditions to consider. One of the most important is the leverage offered by a Forex broker. Other trading conditions are a broker’s execution method and execution speed, the base currency of your trading account, what assets are available to trade and whether scalping and hedging are allowed.

    Leverage

    Leverage is money borrowed from your Forex broker to increase the size of a Forex trade. Leverage is essential in Forex trading because the movements of the market are too small to make a decent profit unless you place thousands of dollars on each trade. Brokers will always advertise the maximum leverage they offer in a ratio format, such as 30:1, 100:1, 300:1, etc. The maximum leverage varies between brokers.

    Leverage can be used to make large profits with little of your own money, but you can also quickly lose more than your original investment. If the trader opened a position with 10 USD and 300:1 leverage, the traders would borrow 300 times their capital from the broker making the actual trading capital in the trade 3000 USD.

    As leverage is borrowed money, the trader is responsible for the full amount of your trade. Should the trader be unable to cover the losses, the broker will use trading account funds to settle the debt. If this is still not enough to cover your losses, you may end up owing your Forex broker money, unless they offer negative balance protection

    When comparing brokers, you want to see that they offer enough leverage to make Forex trading profitable. In Australia there are restrictions on leverage and negative balance protection is required by law. Always check that your broker provides you with negative balance protection before you start trading.

    Execution Speed and Execution Method

    Execution speed is how fast a broker will open your trade and is linked to a broker’s execution method. We do not mark brokers down in our reviews for their execution method, but we will always mention it as we know that some traders have a strong preference.

    Market maker brokers will offer instant execution, thus preventing changes in price while your trade order is processed (slippage) or the rejection and return of your trade order (requotes). When you trade with a market maker broker, they do not place your trade on the Forex market, but instead, act as counterparty to your trade. While there is a conflict of interest in this business model, because when a trader loses the broker profits, most market makers take their prices from the large banks and regulation prevents them from manipulating market data.

    Brokers who offer market execution are either ECN brokers or STP brokers. ECN brokers operate as a hub for a network of liquidity providers and will automatically find the best price for your trade from the members of their network. STP brokers have more control over which liquidity provider to use and generally have faster execution speeds. Some market execution brokers are hybrid ECN/STP brokers.

    Base Currencies

    A broker will let traders choose the base currency with money will be held in. The most common base currency is the US Dollar (USD). The majority of brokers will also offer Euro (EUR) or Pound Sterling (GBP) accounts and in Australia, most brokers offer Aussie Dollar (AUD) as a base currency. We do not mark brokers down in our reviews for not having AUD accounts, but it is something we will highlight as we know how important it is for Australian traders.

    Trading Assets

    Better Forex brokers will offer 50+ currency pairs to trade. Many Forex brokers are also multi-asset brokers, especially the larger ones, which means that you can also trade other financial instruments such as cryptocurrencies, equities, commodities, precious metals, indices, and bonds. Brokers that have fewer currency pairs to trade will be marked down in our reviews. We also mark down brokers who do not offer at least a few other financial instruments to trade.

    Hedging and Scalping

    Not all Forex brokers allow scalping. A Forex scalping strategy is where a trader seeks to profit from rapid price changes in a short period. A scalper, a trader who employs a scalping strategy, enters and exit trades several times a day, and closes all trades on the day they were opened. 

     Not all brokers allow hedging on their platforms, but most market execution brokers do. Hedging is protecting yourself against adverse price movements that would affect open trades and is a form of insurance. Direct hedging is a common strategy, where a trader buys a currency pair and then sells the same pair at the same time.

    Broker Regulation

    Broker regulation keeps your money safe. It protects Forex traders from broker fraud, broker dishonesty, and broker bankruptcy.Simply put, you must trade with a regulated broker.

    Regulators ensure that brokers abide by the law and don’t cheat their clients. They ensure that brokers keep company money and trader’s money in separate accounts. They also ensure that brokers have enough money to keep going even if they make heavy losses.

    Some traders believe that unregulated brokers are rare, but this is not the case. Unregulated brokers will often claim to be regulated, so you should always check.

    Checking if a broker is regulated is easy and only takes a couple of minutes (and could save you a lot of money and heartache!) Once you are finished reading this section you will be able to check if a broker is licensed with all the following regulators:

    We have a separate article which will guide you in verifying broker regulation. 

    Broker Customer Support

    Better Forex brokers have customer support available 24 hours a day (Monday-Friday) via live chat, telephone, messaging services and email. It is also important that a broker has great IT support, as setting up a trading platform can be tricky for new traders. We highly rate brokers that offer 24-hour support and weekend support.

    Forex Trading Platforms

    Brokers will always offer you a trading platform to access the Forex market. While a select few brokers have proprietary software unique to their brokerage, many use independent trading programs like MT4MT5 or cTrader. We know that Forex traders value choice and brokers with a range of platforms will be rated higher in our reviews.

    If you are a beginner seeking to learn more about platform options, we have put together a guide to the best Forex trading platforms and the brokers that support them. All brokers have mobile trading apps, and some will have developed proprietary apps, but a vast majority rely on the MetaTrader app for IOS and Android.

    Brokers for Beginners

    Some brokers are better than others for beginners. The best brokers for beginners will have clear and practical educational material, insightful market analysis and top-notch customer support. Some brokers will also offer one-on-one training, live webinars and real-world seminars.

    Demo Accounts

    All brokers will offer a demo account. It is important for beginner Forex traders to have a demo account that will not expire, so you can be completely comfortable with the market and the trading platform before you start trading with your own money.

    Swap-Free (Islamic) Accounts

    Islamic accounts, or swap-free accounts, are an optional trading account type that allows Forex traders to be compliant with the principles of Sharia law. In Sharia law, interest is prohibited, so swap-free accounts do not pay or earn overnight interest (rollover fees) on open positions.

    Managed Accounts

    Some brokers will operate a managed account for you, but this is rare. There are independent money managers who can manage your account while they are trading for themselves. It is vital that you read our article on managed accounts and understand the minimum deposit requirements and additional risks involved when trading CFDs.

    FAQ

    What is the best Forex broker?

    The best brokers are IG Markets, Pepperstone and Markets.com. IG Markets is a great all-round broker with low fees and tight spreads. Pepperstone is trusted by thousands of traders across the world and has a great range of account types. Markets.com has a wide range of assets to trade, top-class customer support and education for new traders, and the new Marketsplatform is a great piece of design.

    I am a beginner trader, what should I look for in a broker?

    As a beginner trader, choose a broker with an unlimited demo account, as this will give you the opportunity to practice before making a deposit. Limited demo accounts usually expire after 1-3 weeks, which is not enough time to learn how to profit from CFD trading.

    Beginner traders should get educational support when starting, and each broker varies significantly in what material they provide. The minimum you should accept is some general videos and articles, but some brokers have invested in creating small trading universities that include video material as well as live webinars hosted by experts.

    Each of our reviews has a section on the educational content to help beginner traders decide the best path forward.

    Which is the best Forex brokers for beginners?

    The Forex broker for beginners is XTB.  Customer service is available 24/7 with both one-on-one mentoring and dedicated account managers provided for new traders. Educational material is excellent and is presented via XTB’s Trading Academy, which is both well-structured and clear. Finally, minimum deposit requirements are low, and spreads are tight.

    How do I know I can trust a Forex broker?

    Four things should be considered when determining if a broker may be trusted – regulation, trade execution method, client funds management, and industry recognition of their achievements.

    The more major regulators the broker group is regulated by, the more oversight the group has. The number of regulators overseeing their processes gives a strong indication of the level of trust the government regulatory agencies have in them.

    The execution method of trades is another component because if the broker profits from your loss – as is the case with market maker brokers – this can be seen as making the broker less trustworthy.

    This is more of a concern if fewer major regulators regulate a market maker. Therefore, a heavily regulated market maker is considered more reputable than one with lesser regulation. It is noteworthy that some market makers have strong reputations and lots of client resources.

    Most regulators require strict processes to keep client funds safe. This process includes placing client funds in segregated accounts at major banks in the local jurisdiction. Segregated bank accounts that are audited every evening means that client funds are protected against any bankruptcy.

    Industry awards are given to brokers from journalists, financial watchdog organisations and their peers. While it can be argued that these award ceremonies are biased, they remain the best gauge industry recognition.

    Do brokers trade against you?

    If the broker is a market maker, then they are the market and will be trading against you by being the counterparty to your trade to create the liquidity you need. Since a vast majority of trades by retail traders are lost, a market maker is making money in most client trades. DMA brokers do not have any conflict of interest and do not trade against you.

    How do brokers make money?

    Market Makers will make money only from the spread – the difference between the buying and selling price of the currency pair. Since a Market Maker will become the counterparty to any trade, they will also make money when clients lose trades.

    DMA brokers will make money from a tight spread and a commission, which is calculated on a per lot amount.

    How to deposit with a broker?

    Each broker is going to have different deposit methods, but all will have a deposit by credit/debit card and bank transfer option. Most brokers will also accept Neteller or Skrill, which are favoured by many traders because deposits and withdrawals are instant and usually free.

    Some will accept regional payment methods and, on occasion, brokers will accept Bitcoin deposits.

    Which broker should I choose?

    Traders have different requirements of Forex brokers, and thus there is no single best choice. This is how we compare them, and we offer insight into your choices. At the top of this article, there is a list of those that we believe are the best brokers for traders based on their reputation, platform, trading conditions and resources available to beginners.

    How can I report scam brokers?

    If you believe you have been scammed by your broker, the first thing to do is warn others and tell your story.  We have a report a scam broker form which we use to gather information so that we get the word out.  If you have been scammed, please complete the form.

    Forex Risk Disclaimer

    Trading Forex and CFDs is not suitable for all investors as it carries a high degree of risk to your capital: 75-90% of retail investors lose money trading these products. 

    Forex and CFD transactions involve high risk due to the following factors: Over-leveraging, unpredictable market volatility, slippage arising from a lack of liquidity, inadequate trading knowledge or experience, and a lack of regulatory protection for clients.

    Traders should not deposit any money that is not disposable. Regardless of how much research you have done, or how confident you are in your trade, there is always a substantial risk of loss. (Learn more from the FCA or from ASIC)

    Our Rating & Review Methodology

    Our State of the Market Report and Broker Directory are the result of extensive research on over 100 Forex brokers. The explicit goal of these resources is to help traders find the best Forex brokers – and steer them away from the worst ones – with the benefit of accurate and up-to-date information.

    With over 150 data points on each broker and over 3000 hours of research and review writing, we believe we have succeeded in our goal. 

    In a world where trading conditions and customer support can vary based on where you live, our broker reviews focus on the local trader and give you information about these brokers from your perspective.

    All research has been conducted by our in-house team of researchers and writers, gathering information from various company representatives, websites and by sifting through the fine print. Learn more about how we rank brokers

    References

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    Trading Forex and CFDs is not suitable for all investors and comes with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 75-90% of retail investors lose money trading these products. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

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