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FBS

FBS Review
Trader's rating 4
Editor's rating 4.4

Trading Accounts

Account type Minimum deposit Minimum trade size Maximum leverage Average Spreads
Cent $1 0.01 lot 1:1000 2 pips
Standard $100 0.01 lot 1:3000 0.9 pips
Zero Spread $500 0.01 lot 1:3000 0 pips + $20/lot
ECN $1000 0.1 lot 1:500 from -1 pip + $6/lot

 

While most brokers provide several account type options, Clients of FBS are offered a choice of four. All of them offer market execution and the chance to trade in micro lots in Cent account for more precise risk management. Besides, FBS’s clients may choose between variable spreads, commission-free trading and zero spread plus commission.

 

In addition, FBS provides swap-free (Islamic) accounts as well as VIP Services. STP/ECN environment is also available with this broker.

 

Keep in mind that this broker does not provide financial services to residents of Belize, USA and Russia.

 

The Company. Security of Funds

 

Company

Country

Regulation

FBS Markets Inc.

Belize

IFSC

Tradestone Limited

Cyprus

CySEC

 

Established back in 2009, FBS is now a popular international broker which has won numerous awards. It offers its clients competitive trading conditions, wide range of trading accounts, payment methods, a choice of fixed and variable spreads, Metatrader 4 and MetaTrader 5, as well as various promotions.

 

Behind the brand is FBS Markets Inc., a company licensed and regulated by the International Financial Services Commission of Belize (IFSC).IFSC has very liberal control over forex brokers, but still, the regime in Belize is far better than those in other offshore jurisdictions.

 

In 2017 FBS, undertook an important step and got licensed in one of the most popular destinations for forex brokers – Cyprus. Its EU entity Tradestone Limited operates under the regulatory oversight of the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission, a.k.a. CySEC.

 

Forex brokers licensed by CySEC must comply with a number of requirements regarding capital adequacy, transaction reporting, clients’ funds segregation, AML policies, etc. Besides, all licensed entities are members of the Investor Compensation Fund, which may cover a maximum of 20,000 EUR per person in the event of broker insolvency.

 

Furthermore, under the MiFID regulations every CySEC-regulated ibroker is entitled to operate throughout the EU and the EEA.  

 

Trading Conditions

 

Minimum Initial Deposit

One may open an account with FBS with just $1 – a symbolically low initial amount. In comparison, FX Choice (which also holds a license from IFSC) requires at least $100 as a minimum for opening an account, but it offers pure STP/ECN environment.

 

Average spreads & Commissions

According to us, the best spreads of FBS are offered on the ECN account type. Spreads on ECN account start from -1 pip (negative spread) and the commission is just $6 per lot.

 

In comparison, Fx Choice offers typical spreads amounting to 0.5 pips on EUR/USD, and commission of $3.86 per lot applies. For further information, you may look up real-time spreads of 15 leading brokers here.

 

Maximum Leverage

The maximum leverage levels available with this broker are among the highest in the industry, reaching 1:3000. While this may sound attractive, especially to traders on a small budget, since it allows them to operate with significantly higher amounts, keep in mind that higher leverage involves greater risk.

We advise traders to exercise caution when using higher leverage levels.

 

Trading Platforms

 

FBS provides its clients with a choice of two trading platforms: Metatradeer 4 (MT4) and MetaTrader 5 (MT5).  Both platforms are offered as desktop, web and mobile versions.

 

MetaTrader 4 is the most popular forex trading platform. Equipped wirth a number of technical indicators, advanced charting tools, extensive back-testing environment, and a wide range of Expert Advisors (EA), it is preferred by most traders.  allowing clients to fully automate their trades. MT4 comes in desktop, and mobile versions.

 

As most MT4’s indicators and Expert Advisors (EA) are not supported on the MT5 platform, the latter is still in the shadow of its predecessor. Recently, however, a number of enhancements were made to the MetaTrader 5 and the hedging option was finally added to it and it gains popularity. What is more, Russian developer MetaQuotes announced it will no longer issue updates to the MT4 and will instead concentrate on the MT5.

More brokers using the MT5 can be viewed here.

 

Promotions

FBS runs a variety of promotions. At the time of writing this review the following bonuses are available:

 

- 100% bonus for deposit;

On the first day of each month, you will be able to withdraw as much profit received on the bonus funds as many lots you have traded within the previous month x3.

-Cashback program, allowing traders to receive up to $7 per lot.

 

Methods of Payment

 

FBS offers its clients a wide range of payment methods: credit cards (Visa, Visa Electron, Mastercard), bank wire, Skrill, Neteller, Perfect Money, OKPAY, YuuPay, LaoForexBoard, FBS Asia Exchanger.

 

Conclusion

 

FBS appears to be a decent broker, who has operated for more than 9 years and has won many awards. It offers reasonable conditions for trading in a variety of products through different platforms. Here are, in a nutshell, the advantages and disadvantages of FBS:

 

Pros Cons
   
Variety of platforms, MT4 available  No significant disadvantages
Competitive spreads (especially on ECN accounts)  
Low minimum deposits required  
Variety of promotions  
ECN/STP environment available  

 

Headquarters:  Suite 5, Garden City Plaza, Mountain View Boulevard, BELMOPAN, Belize, C. A.

Country: Belize 

Regulated by: IFSC, CRFIN

Website: www.IdnFBS.com

Bonus:

$5 no deposit bonus!
Open an account and get $5! No deposit required! 

100% Bonus
Get 100% on all deposits

FBS deposit insurance!
With FBS you can be sure that in case you lose your deposit FBS will return it!

FBS MasterCard
Try out advantages of deposit and withdrawal anytime and anywhere with your FBS MasterCard

Super Trader Contest for real accounts
Unlimited prize fund! 30 traders get 10$ for each traded lot and super gadgets.

FBS Pro Demo Contest 
Become a real professional of Forex Market. Prize fund: $1000 each month. 

Bonus for IB 
Every IB gets real funds for every real client acquired.


iPartner
Acquire clients, get points and win super prizes from FBS!

Share your secret of success

If you increased your Bonus $5 10 times and more, share your secret of success and get $7 from FBS!

Self-rebate

Trade with FBS and receive up to $ 15 per transaction additionally!
 

Awards:
 
2015 - Best ECN/STP Forex Broker
2015 - The Best Broker Insurance & Service. Excellent of The Year. 
2014 - Best Broker in Southeast Asia (Forex Report Awards by World Finance)
2014 – Best Broker Asia Pacific (International Finance Magazine)
2014 – Best Forex Brand Asia (Global Brands Magazine) 
2013 - Best Partnership Program (Masterforex-v)
2013 - Best Trading Platform (China Finance Online) 
2013 - Best Forex Broker South-East Asia (World Finance)
2013 - Best Broker in Asian Region (Forex Expo)
2012 - Best MT4 Platform (9th China (Guangzhou) International Investment & Finance Expo)
2012 - Best Forex Broker Asia (World Finance Awards)
2012 - Fastest Growing Forex Broker Asia (Global Banking and Finance Review)
2011 - Best Mini Forex Broker (World Finance Awards)
2010 - Best Mini Forex Broker (ShowFX World)
 

 

Kraken

Kraken Review
Trader's rating 1.4
Editor's rating 4

Account type

 

Account type Minimum deposit Leverage Maker fee Taker fee
Standard Undisclosed 1:5 Max of 0.16% Max of 0.26%

 

Kraken is one of the most popular crypto currency exchanges. It is currently the world’s leader, in terms of Bitcoin to EUR trading volumes. 

 

The company, security of funds

 

Company Country Regulation
Payward, Inc, USA N/A

 

The Kraken exchange is operated by the San Francisco-based Payward Inc. The company is not under direct regulation by any agency, but this is not unusual in the crypto currency space (at least for now). 

 

The company’s overall reputation is pretty solid. It hasn’t experienced any major hacks yet. Furthermore, it was chosen as the platform, through which payments to creditors of ill-fated Mt.Gox received their claims. If you are not familiar with the case,  Mt.Gox was a huge Bitcoin exchange in Japan, which filed for bankruptcy protection in 2014, following a shady turn of events, which are another topic altogether. The company was then under special administration, which chose Kraken as a reliable partner, in order to facilitate payments to creditors.

 

Most of the coins on Kraken are kept in cold storage, with the exception of the ones currently used for trading, of course.

 

User reviews on Kraken are fairly mixed. Complaints vary from slow processing of deposits, lack of response by the customer support to stop-loss orders not triggering. While the latter is concerning the former two may be related to lack of staff, similarly to the issues which Poloniex currently has.

 

Trading conditions

 

Trading instruments (cryptocurrencies)

 

Kraken offers quite a few trading instruments. Although the exchange is most famous for its Bitcoin and Ethereum to cash (EUR and USD) markets, altcoins are also available. Here is a list of all the coins you can trade one way or another: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, EOS, Dash, Ripple, Monero, Iconomi, Zcash, Augur, Gnosis, Stellar Limens, Dogecoin, Melon. Kraken plans to add new coins in the future.

 

It is worth mentioning this is one of the rather few exchanges which provides trading Bitcoin against currencies like the CAD and GBP. Although majors in the forex market, these are not often provided at crypto-exchanges. That being said liquidity may be an issue.

 

Minimum initial deposit

 

No minimum deposit level is specified by Kraken. Although this is not unusual in the cryptoverese, forex brokers (some of which allow Bitcoin trading) specify this on their websites. As an example, the industry leaders at IG proudly claim they do not have a minimum deposit requirement.

 

Leverage

 

Leverage is only offered for some of the instruments at the Kraken Exchange. It varies from 1:2 to 1:5. These levels may seem low, if you are used to forex trading, where a lot of brokers offer 1:500 in leverage. That being said, even they provide lower levels for crypto currency trading. For instance, the FCA-regulated industry veterans at HYCM currently offer 1:10 for Bitcoin trading.

 

Kraken charges a fee for leveraged trading. It varies from 0.01% to 0.02%, based on the instrument and is applied every four hours. This is a hassle you will not have if you chose to trade Bitcoin with a forex broker. Do keep in mind there is a huge difference between the services provided by forex brokers and crypto-exchanges. For a full breakdown, read this article

 

Fees

 

Kraken charges different fees for market “makers” and “takers”. At the time of writing of this review, they are 0.16% for the makers and 0.26% for the takers (for the lowest volumes). 

 

For those of you who are unaware of what these terms mean, trading on an exchange is slightly different than, forex trading. If you want to buy a particular instrument, you can do this directly, by getting it from the lowest available ask price (offer). This is an “aggressive” entry, which takes away market liquidity and is connected to a bigger fee (the taker fee). On the other hand, you can place your own bid in the order book, which then has to be triggered by another trader, who would sell his asset to you. In this case, you are providing liquidity to the market and pay a lower fee (the maker fee).

 

Overall, the fees provided by Kraken are in line with offerings by other exchanges.

 

Trading platform

 

When it comes to the trading platform, Kraken provides their own solution for some of the functionality, while relying on TradingView for the charting, similarly to Bitfinex.

 

There is pretty detailed access to the short term market dynamics. The tape, includes a historical bid/ask chart, which can be useful. Here is a preview:

 

 

The depth of the market is also presented in an easy to understand manner. Here is a preview:

 

You can see the book on the right side, with a graphical depiction on the left. 

 

The charts, provided by TradigView are a good tool for technical analysts. They are available via a click of a button next to the instrument list. The chart pops-up as a small external window, which you can later move, resize and so on. You can create an entire layout (even on a separate monitor) of your PC can handle the hardware requirements of modern browsers. Here is a preview:

 

 

Kraken also offers a mobile app, which is currently only available on iOS. Hopefully an Android implementation will come soon.

 

 

Methods of payment

 

Fiat currency payments at Kraken are only done via Bank Transfer. There is a slight advantage, if you have a bank account within the European Economic Area, since the SEPA payment system is supported. Crypto currency deposits are also available, but instant real money options such as Credit Card, PayPal or Neteller are not.

 

Conclusion

 

Kraken is a US-based crypto currency exchange. That being the case, the company operates a lot with Europan customers, as it is the world’s leader in terms of Bitcoin to EUR trading volumes. Kraken is as reputable, as one can get in the cryptoverse, with no major hacks or scandals so far. The trading environment feels good, providing detailed tape-reading potential. Commissions are in-line with the current industry averages. Here are Kraken’s strong and weak sides:

 

Pros Cons
Reputable company, no hacks yet  Credit cards and Paypal not accepted
High Bitcoin to EUR liquidity  Mobile app available only for iOS
Solid charting, by TradingView  Recent negative user reviews
Commissions in line with the industry  
Bank Transfers available  

 

Forex
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