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FxPro

FxPro Review
Trader's rating 3.5
Editor's rating 4.5

Trading Accounts

 

Account type/Platform Minimum deposit Minimum trade size Maximum leverage Average Spreads Execution type
MT4
 
$100
 
0.01
 
1:500
 
fixed 1.6 pips
variable 1.4 pips
Instant
market
MT5 $100 0.01 1:500 1.4 pips  Market
cTrader $100 0.01 1:500 0.3 pips +$4.5* Market

 

*Commission is calculated per standard lot of 100 000 currency base units (per side).

 

Depending on the trading platform used, FxPro offers three basic account types – MT4, MT5, and cTrader (NDD). All three account types offer dynamic leverage up to 1:500 and micro tradeable lots.

 

Besides, FxPro offers its in-house built FxPro Markets platform.

 

In addition, the brokerage provides swap-free (Islamic) accounts to clients of the Muslim faith, as well as VIP services to high-net-worth individuals and those actively trading large volumes.

 

VIP clients benefit from free VPS service, no deposit fees, and receive trade recommendations, exclusive news reports and margin level alerts via email and SMS.

 

Trading Conditions

 

Minimum initial deposit

In order to open an account with FxPro, one has to invest $100, however the recommended minimum initial deposit is $500.

 

Spreads & Commission

FxPro offers a choice of fixed and variable spreads, commission-free (MT4 & MT5) and commission-involving (cTrader) accounts on an array of platforms.

 

In fact, the broker’s fixed spreads are quite good - 1.6 pips on EUR/USD, while most fixed-spread brokers provide such of 2 pips. FxPro’s variable spreads, on the other hand, are average – typical ones are around 1.4 (MT4 & MT5) or 1.2 pips (FxPro Markets) for the EUR/USD pair on commission-free accounts. The tightest spreads with this broker are available on cTrader accounts - 0.3 pips, however if we add the commission of $9 round trip, average trading costs per standard lot traded amount to around 1.2 pips.

 

In comparison, another major UK broker, IG, offers average spreads of 0.2 pips on its DMA accounts, where a commission of $5 per side per standard lot applies. For further information, you can check out the real-time spreads of 15 leading brokers here.

 

Maximum leverage

FxPro offers comparatively high leverage levels – up to 1:500. Despite the fact that such leverage levels are considered high, many other brokers offer leverage up to 1:500 or higher. In comparison, IG offers leverage up to 1:200.

 

In order to control the risk associated with it, the broker utilizes a dynamic forex leverage model on the MT4 and MT5 platforms, which automatically adapts to clients trading positions:

 

 

The Company

 

FxPro is an award-winning pure NDD broker that offers trading in on a range of instruments, including currency pairs, shares, spot indices, futures, spot metals and spot energies, on a selection of trading platforms. It provides its clients with access to top-tier liquidity, excellent trading conditions and the highest level of customer protection possible, including negative balance protection.  

 

What is more, FxPro demonstrates a long-term commitment to transparency, as it regularly publishes trades execution statistics (slippage & requotes data). This brokerage is excellent choice for both savvy and novice traders. Beginners can take advantage of the broker's educational resources – video tutorials, webinars, live hangouts, etc. For more advanced traders, there are additional analytical tools like Trading Central and Autochartist. 

 

FxPro is the collective brand name of FxPro UK Ltd., an entity regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), and FxPro Financial Services Ltd., which is licensed by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC) and the Financial Services Board (FSB) of South Africa. In October, 2017 the broker was granted a license to operate in the UAE from the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA).

 

Company

Country

Regulation

FxPro UK Limited

UK

FCA

FxPro Financial Services Ltd

Cyprus

CySEC

FxPro Financial Services Limited

South Africa

FSB

 

Security of funds

 

Both FCA and CySEC apply certain rules and requirements to regulated firms, thus ensuring a good level of credibility. Cypriot and UK brokers must hold at least €730 000 in order to prove their good financial standing, and are required to keep customer funds in segregated accounts, separated from the company’s operating funds. 

 

As a further guarantee to clients’ funds, all companies regulated in UK and Cyprus are covered by compensation schemes as additional guarantee to clients’ funds. All deposits with a UK regulated forex broker up to £50,000 per client are guaranteed by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) - UK’s statutory compensation scheme for clients of authorized financial services companies. Similarly, Cypriot Investment Firms are members of the Investor Compensation Fund, which is able to pay compensation up to 20,000 EUR, If the company is in default. 

 

What is more, FxPro Financial Services Limited is also licensed by the Financial Services Board (FSB) as a Financial Services Provider. South Africa is lately gaining popularity as a forex broker destination.

 

Trading platforms

 

FxPro supports MT4, MT5, cTrader and proprietary FxPro Markets platform.

 

FxPro Markets is the latest addition to the broker’s suite of trading platforms, available for web and mobile devices. It is a comprehensive, all-in-one trading solution, enabling clients to create and manage their trading accounts, deposit funds, and trade the markets, etc.

 

In spite of the number of improvements made to MT5 lately (and most importantly the hedging option added to it), MetaTrader 4 is still preferred by most brokers and experienced traders. That is why most brokers support it. MT4 provides an advanced charting package, lots of technical indicators, extensive back-testing environment and a variety of Expert Advisors (EAs).

 

MT4’s successor, MetaTrader 5, allows the execution of orders in several financial markets and stock exchanges through a single trading account. This platform also features advanced charting package, trading and analysis tools, alerts, signals, and customizable indicators. 

 

Last but not least, FxPro offers access to cTrader platform, which is custom-made for use in NDD environment.  cTrader is fast, easy to use and provides pricing transparency and tight spreads.  The cTrader suite includes a PC, web and mobile versions, as well as automated trading software cAlgo.

 

FxPro provides ultrafast execution: 99.9% of orders executed within 50ms. In addition, its clients may run their MT4 Expert Advisors or cAlgo robots on the Virtual Private Server, without even needing to keep their trading terminal running.

 

Payment methods

 

Clients of FxPro Financial Services Limited are offered a wide range of payment methods: Bank transfer, Credit/Debit Card (including Visa, Visa Electron, Visa Delta, MasterCard, Maestro International, Maestro UK), PayPal, Skrill, Neteller, China UnionPay, mPay, FasaPay (for Indonesian clients), Webmoney (for Russian clients), Moneta, Boleto (for Brazilian customers), Netbanx (for Chinese customers), eProtections (for Japanese customers).

 

Clients of FxPro UK Limited may use only Bank transfer and Credit/Debit Card.

 

Withdrawals are proceeded by the broker’s Client Accounting Department within 1 working day.

 

Conclusion

 

FxPro is one of the most prominent names in the forex industry. The broker operates as a Hybrid Agency Model broker, offering Negative Balance Protection and enabling clients to access top-tier liquidity, wide range of trading platforms and financial instruments with lightning-fast execution. It is well-regulated and extremely reliable with its long-term commitment to transparence. Here are, in a nutshell, the advantages and disadvantages with regards to this broker:

 

Pros Cons
Strong regulation  No major disadvantages
Negative balance protection  
Multiple trading platforms offered  
Competitive spreads & pricing  
High leverage levels offered  
Pure NDD brokerage  
Fast execution speed  

 

 

Headquarters: Karyatidon 1, Ypsonas 4180, Cyprus

Tel: +357 25 969 222; Fax: +357 25 969 269; 
Email: [email protected];

Country: Cyprus, UK

Regulated by: FxPro Financial Services Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission under the license number 078/07

FxPro UK Ltd (a subsidiary of FxPro Financial Services Limited) is authorised and regulated by the FSA (Registration No 509956) 

Website: FxPro.co.uk

Bitstamp

Bitstamp Review
Trader's rating 1
Editor's rating 3.9

Our Experience

We registered an account at Bitstamp and after confirming the ID, we decided to make a credit card deposit. What first stroke us, was the fact you can only directly buy Bitcoin via credit card, instead of simply transferring funds to your account. The purchase went fine, after dealing with an external payment services provider. We immediately sold the coins, in order to have a USD trading balance. At that point we realized the 8% fee on credit card transfers (at the time, now the fee is 5%) truly applies.

 

Later on, we traded with the platform and everything felt fine. While the speed of execution was slightly lower than the one provided by most forex trading platforms, it was still pretty decent. The order book seemed to have some trading robots, which moved the best bids/asks constantly, but this didn’t hinder trading at all.


We also made a SEPA Bank transfer to this exchange. The funds arrived less than 24 hours later and the only fees we paid were the ones charged by our local bank.

 

We ended up having some Litecoin, which we transferred to Bittrex, in order to continue our journey in the world of altcoins. Additionally, we left some Ethereum, which we sent to a newly created wallet at MyEtherWallet – a wallet, which allows users to control their private keys. All of these blockchain transactions, which are external to Bitstamp happened in minutes. We are yet to test the speed of bank transfer withdrawals, from this exchange.

 

Trading Accounts

Account type Minimum deposit Leverage Fee
Standard Undisclosed N/A 0.25%*

*Fees can go lower for bigger traders

 

Bitstamp is one of the few cryptocurrency exchanges which accepts deposits directly from traditional payment methods. In essence this service can be used to obtain Bitcoin (via a bank transfer or credit card) which you are then free to send.

 

The company, security of funds

Company Country Regulation
Bitstamp Ltd. Luxembourg CSSF

 

Bitstamp Ltd. is the company behind this project. They have offices in Luxembourg, London and New York. More importantly, this is the first fully licensed cryptocurrency exchange in Europe. It is regulated by the (Luxembourg Financial Industry Supervisory Commission, known as the CSSF). As we often warn against the risks involved in dealing with unregulated or off-shore forex brokers, it is nice to see a company in the cryptoverse, which is registered with a watchdog.

 

The CSSF Licensing ensures the company periodically files reports with the appropriate agencies. Bitstamp is registered as a “Payment institution”, which implies you can be sure about the real-money transfers you send to (and receive from them). That being said we don’t know if mandatory policies on fairness of execution are in place. No matter the case, this is much more than, what most other crypto-exchanges provide in terms of regulation.

 

Bitstamp was hacked in early 2015. Afterwards the company rebuild its entire trading platform. Nowadays they claim to store 98% of their client’s cryptocurrencies on cold storage, while only 2% are directly available on the exchange. This is a major improvement in terms of security.

 

Bitstamp partnered with Swissquote, in July 2017.  The Swiss bank and broker, decided to trust this company, in order to provide Bitcoin trading to its clients. This speaks volumes in terms of Bitstamp’s credibility. At the time of writing of this review, there is no integration with the MetaTrader4 (MT4) platform. Trading is instead done on the Swissquote’s website, with limited functionality. This is bound to change in the future. 

 

The user reviews for Bitstamp are fairly mixed. There are lots of satisfied customers and people claiming dissatisfaction with the support. Similarly to Poloniex, the company may be experiencing more significant traffic than expecting, but the negative comments are not that harsh. 

 

Trading conditions

 

Trading instruments (cryptocurrencies)

Bitstamp allows trading cryptocurrencies against the old-fashioned EUR and USD. On the other hand few coins are supported, namely Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and Ripple. If you want to dive into more exotic altcoins, you can use Bitstamp as a way to convert your cash into one of these three and then transfer it to a different exchange which supports your preferred altcoin.

 

Minimum initial deposit

There is no information on the minimum deposit at Bitstamp. While this is not that unusual, when dealing with cryptocurrencies, the company does accept traditional payments. There may be a level below, which they would not accept your transfer. We are used to forex brokers disclosing their minimum entry levels beforehand, like easyMarkets, who require $100.

 

Leverage

Margin trading is not available at Bitstamp. For those of you who do not know what margin trading is – this is a mechanism by which you trade with more buying power than the money you have in your account. When it comes to froex brokers, they allow substantial leverage levels, like 1:500, meaning you can trade with positions worth 500 times more than your investment. The catch is your account serves as a guarantee, and if you start loosing, there will be a point at which your positions will be closed (this is known as receiving a margin call, followed by a margin stop-out).

 

Fees

The commissions, charged by Bitstamp go as high as 0.25% for cash to cryptocurrency trades (for the lowest volumes). As is the practice with most other exchanges, they go lower with bigger volumes. The unusual aspect of this offering is that there is no incentive for the market “makers” (people who place orders on the exchange, instead of aggressively buying from the ones which other traders have placed). Most cryptocurrency exchange provide an ever so slightly lower fee for traders who provide liquidity.

 

Comparing this to the spreads provided by forex brokers is rather hard, as we have mentioned in our general comparison of the two type of service providers. On the other hand, Bitstamp’s fees are in-line with what other cypto-exchanges are offering.

 

 

Trading platform

 

Bitstamp’s trading platform is web-based. This is the norm with most cryptocurrency exchanges, unlike the situation with forex brokers, where downloadable software (like MT4) is prevalent. At first glance Bitstamp’s trading platform looks solid. A big emphasis is placed on charting, with a nice package. It feels pretty similar to cTrader, although it lacks a lot of the functionality. Lots of technical indicators and tools are available, but most forex trading platforms still provide even more options. That being said Bitsatmp’s offer is better that what we have seen at a lot of other crupto-exchanges. Here is a preview of the charting (click to zoom-in):

 

 

The order book is located below the chart and is one of the best ones available (at such exchanges). Here is a screenshot (click to zoom-in):

 

 

It was clearly designed by someone with trading experience as the bid and ask price are next to each other, where the two tables meet (on the left). This allows for a quick and easy comparison of the market depth, although the size of the orders (outer columns) must also be taken into account.

 

Methods of payment

 

Bitstamp accepts payments via Bank Transfer, Credit/Debit Card and cryptocurrencies. There are some specifics regarding the bank transfers, with EU clients being more easily accepted via the SEPA System. While this system is relatively faster than traditional bank transfers, it may come at higher fees (depending on your bank). On the other hand Credit Card transfers, while instant, come with an 8% fee. That being said, virtually anybody can transfer fiat currencies to this exchange. This feature is probably their biggest advantage over others.

 

Conclusion

 

Bitstamp is the first regulated European cryptocurrency exchange. The company keeps 98% of customer’s coins on cold storage wallets, which is a pretty good security measure. Bitstamp is one of the relatively few exchanges who accept deposits by Credit Card and Bank Transfer. Three of the major coins are traded directly against EUR and USD. On the other hand the exchange offers few alternative coins. In essence this is a great gateway for those who are new to the world of cryptocurrencies. Here is a summary Bitstamp’s strong and weak sides:

 

Pros Cons
Luxembourg licensing Few altcoins available
Accepts Bank Transfers and Credit Cards Was hacked in 2015
Competitive commissions 5% fee on credit card purchases
Relatively nice trading platform  
98% of coins kept in cold storage  

 

Forex
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