AuthorBy Jeffrey Cammack
Updated: March 25, 2021

The Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC) is the financial regulator of the Mediterranean island of Cyprus. Central to CySEC’s regulatory policies are segregated bank accounts for client funds, insurance coverage against broker negligence, a compensation scheme of up to €20,000 per account, and a strict capital adequacy ratio requirement to prevent brokers from defaulting because of client’s trades. 

To test these brokers, we verified our live account and reviewed their CySEC regulatory status and complaints history. Beyond confirming the platform choice, minimum deposit, and trading desk type, our test focused on trading conditions, the overall trading cost for clients, withdrawal fees and other fee structures, so traders understand all costs associated with using any specific broker. These are the best CySEC regulated brokers for 2021 according to our testing and our research.

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Best CySEC Regulated Brokers 2021

Last updated on 25 Mar 2021
Updated 25 Mar 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
USD 100
4.174.17
Min. Spread
0 pips
Fx Pairs
60+
CySEC Licence
371/18
Platforms
Overall Rating
4.17/5
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.
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FP Markets is a leading ASIC-regulated broker, providing tight spreads on their RAW account, coupled with the choice of MT4, MT5 and IRESS trading platforms. A standard commission-free account is available for entry-level traders looking for a lower minimum deposit.

Relative to other Forex brokers, FP Markets has made a serious investment in new traders with award-winning customer service and a lightweight education section, which includes daily email updates of the latest financial news impacting the currency markets.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Tight spreads
  • Good range of accounts
  • Great customer support
Cons
  • Expensive withdrawals
Read More About FP Markets
2
Pepperstone
Min. Deposit
USD 200
4.514.51
Min. Spread
0 pips
Fx Pairs
80+
CySEC Licence
388/20
Platforms
Overall Rating
4.51/5
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.
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Pepperstone is a renowned Australian Forex broker, fully-regulated by ASIC and popular worldwide for its fast ECN execution of trades, tight spreads and a wide choice of trading platforms. Award-winning 24-hour support anchors their customer support, where a personalised service for individual customers is available through numerous channels.

Founded in 2010, Pepperstone won the fastest-growing company award (2014) in Australia, from BRW Magazine and emerged as the 2014 Winner of the Governor of Victoria Export Awards cementing their reputation as a strong newcomer with well-appreciated trading conditions.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Tight spreads
  • Great platform choice
  • Wide range of assets
Cons
  • High minimum deposit
  • Limited market analysis
Read More About Pepperstone
3
MarketsX
Min. Deposit
USD 250
4.394.39
Min. Spread
0.60 pips
Fx Pairs
50+
CySEC Licence
092/08
Platforms
Overall Rating
4.39/5
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.
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Markets.com is a global playing the Forex market and has strong brand recognition. With strong International regulation and feedback from the industry, they have built a client base of over 5 million accounts since 2010.  The trading conditions are reasonable for Markets.com being a market maker, and it was a positive step to see this broker adopt the MetaTrader suite of tools.  We recommend Markets.com as traders enjoy trading with them. They are a broker to set up a serious trading account on trusted software and regulation.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Tight spreads
  • Wide range of assets
  • Fast and free withdrawals
Cons
  • High minimum deposit
Read More About MarketsX
4
eToro
Min. Deposit
USD 200
3.693.69
Min. Spread
1 pips
Fx Pairs
52
CySEC Licence
109/10
Platforms
Overall Rating
3.69/5
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.
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eToro is a world-famous internationally and ASIC-regulated CFD broker offering clients a unique experience trading Forex, stocks, commodities, cryptocurrencies, ETFs and indices. While eToro’s main attraction is a bespoke crowd trading platform built to encourage clients to follow expert traders or select market strategies, their trader community is continually let down by inadequate disinterested customer support and tortuously long response times.

eToro has a reduced minimum deposit to 50 USD for all Australian clients, making the platform more appealing to entry level traders. Upon sign up, eToro’s clients become part of a massive community of traders all following expert traders or professional traders contributing to their social trading platform. 

For the most part, the trading conditions at eToro align with other market makers with a unique platform offering, but in contrast, eToro has numerous non-trading fees on both deposits and withdrawals. All in all, a trader who is looking for a traditional trading environment eToro won’t find a fit. Still, for those looking for a strong copy trading platform, eToro wrote the book on copy trading and still stands out as the leader.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Good for beginners
  • Innovative trading tools
Cons
  • Limited education
  • Wide spreads
Read More About eToro
5
FXCM
Min. Deposit
USD 50
4.134.13
Min. Spread
0 pips
Fx Pairs
40
CySEC Licence
392/20
Platforms
Overall Rating
4.13/5
AlertAccepts Australian Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 1.30 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 400:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & Ninja Trader platforms supported. FXCM is regulated by FCA, ASIC, and the FSCA.
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FXCM is an ASIC-regulated provider of online Forex trading and CFD trading and is recognised as a leader in the industry. No commission is charged on the standard account and no fees are charged on deposits or withdrawals. Customer service is available 24/5 via live chat, phone, email and drop-in to FXCM’s local office in downtown Sydney.

Clients have the advantage of one-click order execution and trading from real-time charts across MT4, NinjaTrader or FXTM’s award-winning Trading Station platform – which has many of MT4’s best features without the lengthy setup or complications.  FXCM is also renowned for the number of specialty trading platforms on offer for more experienced traders.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Great platform choice
  • Excellent education
  • Innovative trading tools
Cons
  • Limited demo account
Read More About FXCM
6
easyMarkets
Min. Deposit
USD 25
3.983.98
Min. Spread
0.90 pips
Fx Pairs
103
CySEC Licence
079/07
Platforms
Overall Rating
3.98/5
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.
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EasyMarkets offers three simple account types, a 50% deposit bonus for new accounts up to $2000, and offers MT4 alongside its proprietary platform. EasyMarkets is fully regulated by CySEC, FSA and ASIC in Australia, ensuring compliance with the highest client protection standards. With a minimum deposit of $200, you can trade Forex, commodities, agriculture, metals and other stocks allowing a diversified portfolio of investments.

Customer accounts have a dedicated account manager, 24/5 customer support from their offices around the world, fast withdrawals and a stacked learning centre. EasyMarkets is one of our favourite online Forex brokers.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Wide range of assets
  • Innovative trading tools
Cons
  • Limited platform choice
  • Limited account options
Read More About easyMarkets

There are few genuinely strong regulators in the world; the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority is one, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission is another, and most would agree that CySEC is also a member of this group. After a shaky start as a regular, in recent years CySEC has built a reputation for guaranteeing trader security and dealing harshly with bad brokers, especially since the tightening of ESMA restrictions across the EU. We will talk about those restrictions in more detail below, but first, let’s look at the current benefits of trading with a CySEC-regulated broker.

  • Segregated Funds: All trader funds are kept in a segregated trust account which the broker cannot access. This prevents the broker from using trader funds for operational purposes. It also ensures that in the case of broker bankruptcy, trader funds can be refunded.
  • Capital Adequacy: CySEC requires all regulated brokers to hold enough capital to meet the capital adequacy ratio requirement. This decreases the likelihood of broker failure in the event of significant losses.
  • Reports and Auditing: Because brokers are required to submit regular financial compliance reports to CySEC, it is very difficult for brokers to hide any wrongdoing. Similarly, because these brokers are also subject to independent audits and visits from CySEC investigators, any wrongdoing will be exposed.
  • Compensation Fund: All CySEC-regulated brokers are required to join the Investor Compensation Fund Scheme. Under this scheme, traders are liable for compensation up to 20,000 EUR in the case of broker bankruptcy.
  • Insurance Coverage: CySEC demands that all licenced brokers maintain insurance coverage of at least 1.5 million EUR for losses resulting from negligence.
  • Transparency: CySEC expects to have a complete overview of all products that a broker is planning to offer, and that these products are the same as the products provided to clients.

These protections are enshrined in regulatory law and brokers who are found to be in contravention are penalised and can even have their operating licence removed altogether.

A useful resource for traders, CySEC hosts an up-to-date list of brokers that are legally allowed to operate in their jurisdiction, if you are concerned that a broker may be operating illegally, check CySEC’s regulated entities list.

CySEC also publishes warnings on unregulated brokers operating illegally; many illegal brokers will often disguise themselves as regulated brokers, so it is crucial to check here if you are concerned.

How To Choose a CySEC Regulated Broker?

All CySEC brokers are safe due to the strict regulatory environment in which they operate, and most of them are very strong all-round. But it is essential to look at the detail of each broker to find out what differentiates them from each other.  When looking for a CySEC regulated Forex broker, it is important to judge them on the following areas:

  • Broker Type: Most brokers are either ECN/STP or Market Makers, but some can be a combination of both. You will find that many brokers will provide an ECN/STP service on their higher-deposit account types while acting as a Market Maker for their Cent and Standard accounts. Many of the best CySEC regulated brokers are ECN/STPs.
  • Trading Conditions: This includes what kind of spreads are available, how much leverage is offered, and how many currency pairs are available. These factors will directly impact your profit or loss, so you don’t want any surprises.
  • Trading Platform: MetaTrader 4 is still the industry standard, but many brokers offer MetaTrader 5 and/or their proprietary platforms. ECN/STP brokers will often support cTrader as it is built specifically for market execution and only allows for minimal broker interference.
  • Minimum Deposit: This changes by account type for many brokers, with higher minimum deposits often linked to better trading conditions. We will always highlight the minimum deposit available regardless of the account type.
  • Deposit and Withdrawal Methods: All brokers accept traditional payment types such as debit/credit cards and bank transfers, many accept online payments through Skrill and Neteller, and some will also accept Bitcoin. Always check for deposit and withdrawal fees, a few brokers charge a percentage fee for some withdrawals methods, making large drawdowns very expensive. 

All CySEC Brokers

This is our list of all CySEC regulated brokers we have reviewed. They are ordered by their overall rating, placing the best overall broker at the top of the list. 

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Overall Rating
Official Site
Regulators
Min. Deposit
Cost of Trading
Trading Commission
No. of FX Pairs
Compare
Official Site
4.54 /5
Read Review
Visit Broker >
Your capital is at risk
USD 20
USD 6
Fees Included in Spread
166
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Your capital is at risk
4.51 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 200
USD 7.90
From 7 USD / lot - Razor Account
80+
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Your capital is at risk
4.46 /5
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Your capital is at risk
USD 200
USD 7
7 USD / lot - True ECN account
60
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Your capital is at risk
4.39 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 250
USD 6
Fees Included in Spread
50+
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Your capital is at risk
4.38 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 5
USD 16
7 USD / lot - XM Zero Account
57
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Your capital is at risk
4.24 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 100
USD 5
6 USD / lot - Prime Account
40+
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Your capital is at risk
4.21 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 100
USD 15
9 USD / lot - cTrader Account
70+
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Your capital is at risk
4.17 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 100
USD 7
6 USD / lot - RAW Accounts
60+
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Your capital is at risk
4.17 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 10
USD 19
4 USD / ECN Accounts
59
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Your capital is at risk
4.13 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 200
USD 12
6 USD / lot - GoPlus+
50+
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Your capital is at risk
4.13 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 50
USD 13
From 6 USD / lot
40
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Your capital is at risk
4.00 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 5
USD 9
6 USD / lot - ECN Accounts
60+
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Your capital is at risk
3.98 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 25
USD 18
Fees Included in Spread
103
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Your capital is at risk
3.83 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 200
USD 14
Fees Included in Spread
54
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Your capital is at risk
3.70 /5
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Your capital is at risk
USD 500
USD 40
Fees Included in Spread
48
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Your capital is at risk
3.69 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 100
USD 8
Fees Included in Spread
70+
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Your capital is at risk
3.69 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 200
USD 10
Fees Included in Spread
52
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Your capital is at risk
3.49 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 100
USD 15
10 USD / lot - ECN Account
43
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Your capital is at risk
3.45 /5
Read Review
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Your capital is at risk
USD 50
USD 10
Fees Included in Spread
50
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Your capital is at risk

Broker Regulation and Why it’s Important

Regulators are essential in all financial markets because they set the rules that guarantee a level playing field. They also enforce those rules by requiring members to submit regular reports and have independent audits. Most good regulators will also have an investigations department and will conduct unannounced visits to regulated companies to ensure day-to-day operations are compliant. Regulators also have the power to impose penalties on members, including fines, sanctions, and even revoking a company’s operating licence, thereby putting them out of business.

What is interesting about the Forex market is that there is no legal requirement for brokers to be regulated. CFD Forex trading is an Over the Counter (OTC) derivatives market – this means that there is no central exchange and no overall regulator with oversight for the market.

Having a wholly unregulated market is a bad idea and leads to massive consumer fraud, as happens on a smaller scale in regions with poorly regulated local Forex industries. Instead of having a single regulator, countries and regions regulate the brokers who reside in their territory. As each regulator has different abilities and priorities, Forex regulation is not uniform, and brokers must abide by different rules depending on which country/countries they are legally resident.

What is CySEC?

CySEC is the financial regulatory agency of Cyprus. It was founded in 2001 and when Cyprus joined the EU in 2004 CySEC became part of the pan-European MiFID (Markets in Financial Instruments Directive). MiFID is an EU law the harmonises regulation for financial services across the member states, allowing for financial firms registered in one state to essentially have a “passport” to operate in all the other EU states.

In terms of the Forex industry, this means that any Forex broker registered in Cyprus can market to, and accept business from, all EU citizens.

As the Cyprus financial regulator, CySEC has many crucial obligations in the financial sector – most of them outside the Forex industry – these are:

  • To review applications for and provide operating licenses to supervised financial companies – and revoke these if necessary.
  • To supervise and regulate the operation of and all transactions on the Cyprus Stock Exchange
  • To carry out all necessary investigations in view of the exercise of its duties under the law as well as on behalf of other foreign competent Authorities.
  • To impose administrative and disciplinary sanctions provided by the law.
  • To issue regulatory Directives and Decisions.
  • To cooperate and exchange data and information with foreign supervisory authorities.

CySEC and ESMA: Restrictions on Trading Conditions

In March 2018, the European Securities Markets Authority (ESMA – an EU taskforce which examines EU-wide financial risk) announced new regulations on all CFD trading in the EU; these regulations were a directive at the supranational level – meaning that all EU members were required to abide by the regulations and enshrine them in domestic law.

Cyprus, as an EU member state, must also abide by this new set of regulations and all CySEC-regulated brokers will have the following restrictions as a result:

  • Leverage Restriction: Maximum leverage of 30:1 on major currency pairs, 20:1 on all other pairs, 5:1 on equities, 2:1 on cryptocurrencies
  • Negative Balance Protection: All brokers must guarantee negative balance protection for all traders
  • No Bonus: All bonuses, promotions or any other type of trading incentive are banned
  • Margin Call: Brokers will be required to close a client’s open positions when the account equity reaches 50% of the required minimum margin by all open positions.
  • Risk Warning: All brokers will be required to display a standard risk warning showing what percentage of clients lose money with them.

While many traders and brokers were unhappy with the restriction on leverage, many people in the Forex industry agree that the new ESMA regulations protect traders from making huge losses without critically damaging broker profits.

CySEC vs FCA

The Financial Conduct Authority is the United Kingdom’s financial regulator and is generally upheld as the best and strictest national regulatory authority in the world. Most good brokers will be regulated either by CySEC, the FCA or sometimes both.

On paper, there is little difference between CySEC or FCA regulation – though the licencing fee for CySEC brokers is only 7,000 EUR, compared to 25,000 GBP for the FCA. Aside from that, both regulators require segregated accounts, membership of a compensation fund and have high capital adequacy standards. All brokers regulated by both authorities will have the same leverage restrictions and other constraints required by the ESMA regulation – though whether this continues to remain the case once the United Kingdom leaves the EU remains to be seen.

The differences between the two regulators are mainly anecdotal, while the FCA is seen as unimpeachable when it comes to protecting consumers and being tough on brokers, many traders complain that CySEC is too broker-friendly and that it gives away operating licences too easily. CySEC also has a history of being easy on badly behaved brokers, with industry commentators noting that fines being levied by CySEC tended to be smaller than those handed out by other EU regulatory organisations.

But since 2016, CySEC has made sweeping changes to both the registration and regulation processes of all registered entities. Changes include more transparency regarding existing listed entities, harsher fines and regular unannounced onsite visits from CySEC investigators to check compliance. This has led to a surge in broker suspensions and license revoking, and CySEC is gradually losing its image as a light-touch regulator.

Conclusion

As the regulator with the most EU registered brokers, CySEC has a critical role in the Forex industry, and millions of traders rely on their ability to ensure a fair trading environment.

While in the past, this ability has been questioned, currently CySEC is seen as a leader in the Forex regulatory world and brokers with CySEC regulation should be considered safe and secure places for trading.

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 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

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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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