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FP Markets

FP Markets Review
Trader's rating 4
Editor's rating 4.8

Trading Accounts

 

Account type Minimum deposit  Minimum trade size  Maximum leverage Typical Spreads
Standard  $100  0.01  1:500 1.45 pips 
ECN Raw $1000  0.01  1:500  0.45 pips + AUD $3.5 / lot (per side)

 

FP MARKETS offers its clients a choice of two live account types: Standard commission-free one, and RAw account which provides tighter spreads, but also involving a commission.


Micro lots are available for trade on both account types and, of course, the broker also provides free Demo accounts, which are always appreciated by inexperienced traders.


The Company. Security of Funds


FP MARKETS (FPM) is a CFD and forex provider specializing in Direct Market Access (DMA) trading, that has over 10 years of experience.


The company behind the FP MARKETS brand is First Prudential Markets Pty Ltd., which holds an Australian Financial Services License and is regulated by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC).


ASIC requires licensed companies to meet certain requirements and to comply with various rules. Clients’ money is to be kept in segregated trust accounts. As for the minimum capital requirement, forex brokers must hold at least $ 1 million in order to prove their good financial standing. In comparison, UK’s FCA requires forex brokers to possess at least 730 000 EUR and Cyprus’ CySEC – 1 000 000 EUR.


Unlike many EU-based brokers, however, Australian ones are not covered by any compensation scheme. FCA-regulated brokerages, for example, fall under Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), which protects consumers up to £50,000 per person per company.


Despite the regulation and the requirements set to Australian brokers, one should be aware of the risks of trading Margin FX and CFDs. Returns and gains are not guaranteed. ASIC, the Australian Government nor any other person guarantees any funds in your account.


Trading Conditions


Minimum Initial Deposit
Traders are required to deposit $100 in order to open an account with FP MARKETS, which is an average initial amount.


Average Spreads & Commissions

FP MARKETS offers variable spreads, the typical ones on its commission-free account amounting to 1.45, and the ones on the ECN Raw accounts averaging to 0.45 pips on EUR/USD. Considering that commission of $3 per standard lot per side applies on the Raw account, trading costs of such account holders amount to a little over 1 pip, which is a competitive pricing.


For further information, you may look up real-time spreads of 15 leading brokers here.


Maximum Leverage
Clients of FP MARKETS use leverage ratios up to 1:500 and such maximum leverage level is considered high. Some jurisdictions cap leverage to levels significantly lower than this (i.e. 1:50 in the US), because higher leverage involves higher risk of heavy losses in excess of initial investments.


Trading Platforms


FP MARKETS offers its customers several trading platforms: MetaTrader 4 (MT4), MetaTrader 5, and its in-house IRESSTrader, specialized in CFDs trading.


MT4 is the most widely used forex platform, available to FPM’s clients as PC, Mac, iPhone/iPad and Android versions. MT4 provides all the tools and resources a trader needs: a number of technical indicators, advanced charting package, extensive back-testing environment and a wide range of Expert Advisers (EAs). By using EAs traders may sit back, while the software does all the work, as Expert Advisers allow full automatization of trades.


If you are running EAs, it is vital that your platform is Internet connected 24 hours a day. The best solution in this case is VPS and FP Markets has partnered with TradersColo and BeeksFX VPS, to provide a customized low latency solution for their clients. The VPS seamlessly connects traders to the Equinix NY4 grid using cutting edge technology and providing excellent execution.


What is more, there are Multi Account Manager MAM/PAMM options on MT4. MetaFX has developed a stand-alone console to assist Multi Account manages in trading. The MAM/PAMM offered are customizable and user friendly.

 

As MT4 will soon be phased out, the broker launched trading in the latest version of MetaQuotes software - MetaTrader 5. It has most of the great features of MT4 (such as the great charting, and EAs), as well as some new ones. Most importantly, the MT5 offer traders the opportunity to trade an extended number of instruments from a variety of asset classes. 


As regards FP Markets’ proprietary platform IRESSTrader, it provides its clients with access to DMA CFDs with industry leading execution, a wide ranges of order types, stop-loss, live news feeds, international data, complete market depth and charting facilities.


IRESSTrader is a web based platform you can access from any PC or even a mobile device.


Methods of Payment


FP MARKETS offers its clients a variety of deposit/withdrawal methods: via credit/debit card, bank wire, BPAY, AstroPay, Neteller, Skrill, China UnionPay.


Depending on the depositing method, clients may use the following currencies: AUD, USD, SGD, CHF, GBP, CAD, HKD, JPY, EUR, and NZD.


Conclusion


FP MARKETS is a reliable Australian STP broker, offering competitive conditions for trading in variety of assets, including Bitcoin (with leverage 1:10). These can be traded on three trading platforms with NDD execution (no conflict of interest). To sum things up, here are the advantages and drawbacks with regards to FP MARKETS:

 

Pros  Cons
Low cost of trading, NDD execution No significant doisadvantages
ASIC-regulated  
Many platforms available (MT4, MT5, as well as a proprietary one)  
High leverage levels  

 

Headquarters: FP Markets Pty, Ltd Level 5, Exchange House, 10 Bridge Street, Sydney NSW 2000

Country: Australia

Regulated by: ASIC

itBit

itBit Review
Trader's rating 1
Editor's rating 4

Trading accounts and conditions

 

Account type Leverage Fees
Standard 1:1 *0.20% taker fee, 0% maker fee

*The OTC Trading desk for large orders charges a 0.10% flat fee per transaction.

 

itBit is a New York licensed US bitcoin exchange that offers services both to small retail and large and institutional clients. The service for smaller clients is called simply “exchange”, while the institutional service is called “OTC Trading Desk”. It is a “boutique service specializing in large bitcoin trades starting over 100 bitcoins”. It offers a deep orderbook, personalized trading support and competitive pricing. This service charges a flat fee of 0.10% per transaction. Additionally, itBit offers personalized service for active traders with a 30-day trading volume over 2,500 bitcoins.

 

Currently itBit offers trading only in Bitcoin against USD, EUR and SGD.

 

Unlike many exchanges who do not require verification at initial registration itBit does require immediate account verification, even before letting the users into their account. For the purpose one needs to provide a copy of government ID and proof of residence, which is more or less the industry standard. The verification process, particularly for foreign clients, takes a few days. For the institutional clients, there is a set of required documents that include incorporation or sole proprietorship proof.

 

ItBit does not offer leveraged trading, but there are cryptocurrency exchanges who do so, like Kraken, bitFlyer, Coincheck, Poloniex, etc. There is also a large number of forex brokers like IG, HYCM and easyMarkets, for example, who offer leveraged trading on CFDs on some of the most popular cryptocurrencies.

 

>> Forex brokers offering leveraged Bitcoin trading <<

 

The Company. Security of Funds

 

Company Country Regulation
itBit Trust Company, LLC USA  NYDFS

 

itBit is a New York based cryptocurrency exchange established in 2013 that operates legally in all 50 states, but also accepts international clients.

 

So far there are no unified rules and requirements for the US cryptocurrency exchanges, but the state of New York has introduced a license. In the spring of 2015 itBit has become the first US bitcoin exchange to get a charter from the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) under the state banking laws. There are two major cryptocurrency exchanges who have a New York bitcoin license: Coinbase and its institutional platform GDAX.

 

itBit employs robust security measures, such as two-factor authentication, multiple layers of platform security and 100% bitcoin cold storage. The company adheres to the CryptoCurrency Security Standard (CCSS) , which is a set of procedural requirements for secure handling of bitcoins established by C4, BitGo Inc. Additionally, all USD assets,  FDIC-insured and all fiat and bitcoin customer assets are fully protected and backed by mandatory capital reserves. Furthermore, the funds of itBit’s US customers are held exclusively in regulated US banks and do not leave American soil. ItBit also provides its US customers with the 1099 forms for tax reporting. 

 

The exchange also is fully compliant with the US anti-money laundering and know-your-customer procedures and requirements.

 

Trading platform

 

We could not gain access to itBit’s trading platform. We noticed, though, that the exchange provides access to market data with charts, the order book and the bitcoin network with a hash rate, market cap, mining revenue and average confirmation charts to anyone who visits the site. We find this fairly convenient.

 

We also came across user comments that the mobile web interface of the exchange is quite slow, but this could be actually caused by slow network and not by the platform itself.

 

Methods of payment

 

The only payment method for fiat currencies itBit accepts, is bank transfer and nothing else. This is quite inconvenient, as the bank transfers, especially the international ones, are far from instant and come with hefty fees. There are also default withdrawal limits of USD $2, 500 daily and USD $15, 000 monthly, but they can be changed. This, however, is done through printing out, filling in and e-mailing a two-page from and we find this a bit tedious.

 

The fact that itBit does not accept payments with credit/debit cards is quite inconvenient, especially for international clients who must pay through the nose for bank fees and wait several days for their payment to be processed.

 

>> crypto exchanges who accept credit cards <<

 

Conclusion

 

The best thing about itBit is that it is a regulated and strict cryptocurrency exchange. It takes rules, regulations and security very seriously and this is a very good thing.

 

However, those who wish to remain anonymous or register and start trading quickly, should go elsewhere and look for exchanges that do not have such strict and lengthy verification requirements. Those who have nothing to hide, though, would be absolutely fine with itBit.

 

A plus of itBit is the offering of special services and lower fees for the large traders.

 

What we do not like about this exchange is the fact that it does not accept credit and debit cards as payment. This, as we said, is not very convenient for a number of reasons.

 

Another minus of itBit is the fact that it does not offer other cryptocurrencies, besides Bitcoin. For those interested in trading in more than one or another altcoin, most exchanges have a somewhat larger selection. There are also platforms like Bisq and LiteBit who have a pretty big portfolio.

 

Pros Cons
NY regulation No anonymity
Robust safety Bitcoin only
Special service for large traders No credit/debit cards accepted
Accepts fiat currencies  

 

 

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