FXCM Review

FXCM Broker Review

FXCM Review

Established in 1999, FXCM has become on of the biggest players in the forex trading industry and offers some of the lowest spreads available.

FXCM is a great choice for both inexperienced and advanced traders as it offers several innovative trading platforms in addition to extensive educational resources. From competitive commission rates and spreads to great customer service and accessibility, there is a lot to like about this forex broker.

Regulation

FXCM is regulated in several different jurisdictions, including:

  • UK: Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)
  • Australia: Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)
  • South Africa: Financial Services Board (FSB)

FXCM also has affiliated offices in Canada and Japan.

Regions Available

FXCM is an available broker in the Forest Park FX cash back rebate program to traders in Latin America, Europe, Middle East, Canada, and APAC regions, subject to certain country-specific restrictions.  Due to regulations it is not currently available to United Sates residents.

There are a few notable country exceptions where FXCM does not accept customers from, including:

    • United States
    • Turkey
    • Japan
    • New Zealand
    • Russia
    • South Korea

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Minimum Deposit

FXCM is very accessible to all levels of trader as there is only a $50 minimum deposit to open a live trading account. Low-volume traders are sure to appreciate the low upfront commitment.

As high-volume traders have grown to expect added benefits for their larger investments and activity levels, they are sure to be satisfied by the additional benefits that FXCM offers as part of its Active Trader and Professional Trader programs. These accounts provide experienced traders with opportunities for significant savings and more.

Commissions & Fees

For standard and active trader accounts, FXCM features extremely competitive commission rates and spreads. Alternatively, mini account holders are not required to pay a commission but are subject to wider spreads that are still very competitive.

According to FXCM, average spreads for EUR/USD are as low as 1.3 pips and 1.6 pips for GBP/USD from October 1, 2018, to December 31, 2018. To calculate the total cost of a trade, you simply multiple the spread by the pip cost and number of lots traded.

FXCM Review
Standard Account Average Spreads

Active Traders, who are traders that deposit a minimum of $25,000, are offered even more competitive commissions and spreads. According to FXCM, Active Trader accounts receive discounts of up to 62.4%. The average spreads for EUR/USD for Active Trader accounts from October 1, 2018, to December 31, 2018 was 0.2 pips with the average spread for GBP/USD during this period was 0.7 pips. Per FXCM, commissions for Active Traders are between $25 and $30 per 1M, depending on monthly volume.

All things considered, FXCM’s commissions and fees remain competitive with other major forex brokers, such as FOREX.com and FxPro.

Types of Accounts

Traders interested in opening an account at FXCM have two primary types of accounts to choose from: Standard and Active Trader.

Standard Account

Standard live trading accounts require a minimum deposit of only $50, making them a great option for both beginner and experienced traders. Standard account holders are given access to numerous powerful platforms and reliable resources. They can also trade currency pairs and CFDs without any restrictions on stop and limit orders.

Active Trader Account

FXCM also offers an Active Trader account for high-volume traders with deep pockets. Holders of this type of account are granted a number of benefits on top of the ones provided by standard accounts.

First, Active Traders are eligible for active trader pricing, which provides generous discounts on commissions and significantly tighter spreads.

Forex Trading
FXCM Standard Account Average Spreads

Other benefits Active Traders receive include:

  • A dedicated team of experts to offer exceptional support
  • Free access to multiple APIs
  • Free access to real-time alerts on currency forecasts and trade ideas through eFXplus

These benefits, among others, are tailored to meet the unique needs of more active and demanding traders.

Spread Betting for UK Residents

FXCM offers spread betting to UK and Ireland residents so that they may take advantage of rising and falling markets without needing to purchase assets from the underlying market. Spread betting is commission-free and can be traded with leverage. Some benefits of spread betting include:

  • No capital gains tax
  • The ability to take advantage of both rising and falling markets
  • Access to leverage

In addition to live trading accounts, users can open a demo account to test the available trading platforms before going live and their trading strategies on those demo accounts before using then in a live account. Demo accounts are a great way to become familiar with FXCM’s tools and resources.

Execution

FXCM offers STP, or straight-through processing, execution, meaning traders can expect tighter spreads.

FXCM also claims to never have requotes. This means that traders don’t have to worry about placing an order at a different price than they expected.

Trading Platforms

FXCM offers customers several powerful and innovative trading platforms.

Trading Station

Trading Station is FXCM’s flagship innovative trading platform. It boasts an incredibly easy-to-use interface, powerful capabilities, and accessibility.

This platform uses Marketscope, a professional charting package, to allow users to trade directly from charts and easily edit orders. Additionally, Trading Station offers over 50 indicators and nearly 20 drawing tools in addition to price overlays and real-time alerts.

Users who opt to use the web-based platform are offered many of the same capabilities that are offered by the desktop version, including the ability to save charts to FXCM’s cloud, access FXCM’s News and Economic Calendar, and view customized trading analytics.

FXCM Trading Station Web Platform
Trading Station Web Platform

Overall, Trading Station provides a plethora of powerful charting tools to aid traders in easily implementing effective trading strategies.

MetaTrader 4

As MetaTrader 4, or MT4, is one of the most common forex trading platforms, it’s no surprise that FXCM offers it alongside its own flagship platform. Experienced traders may opt to use MT4 due to their familiarity with the platform.

FXCM MetaTrader4
MetaTrader 4

MT4 has a technical analysis package which includes more than 30 built-in indicators with over 2,000 custom indicators for free. MetaTrader 4 also boasts powerful, customizable automated trading options as well as a full-featured mobile app for iOS and Android.

MetaTrader 4 is a very intuitive and powerful platform that offers a variety of useful resources for both novice and experienced traders to take advantage of.

ZuluTrade

ZuluTrade is a peer-to-peer platform for traders who don’t have time to develop their own strategies or simply prefer to leave it up to automation.

FXCM ZuluTrade
ZuluTrade Peer to Peer Platform

With ZuluTrade, users subscribe to signals from other traders. Once the provider of this signal places an order, all users who have subscribed to that signal are set to execute the same trade provided they have enough usable margin. Of course, this can be risky as you are relying on independent traders to essentially manage your positions for you.

Mobile Trading

FXCM offers Trading Station on both iOS and Android mobile devices. The mobile app has a modern and intuitive design while still packing many of the powerful features found in the desktop version.

Trading Station for iOS

Charting on the mobile app includes almost 60 indicators alongside several drawing tools. Moreover, seamless navigation and exceptional functionality make placing trades through the mobile app incredibly easy. This can be very useful for active traders who are often on the move.

FXCM customers also have the option of trading through the MetaTrader 4 mobile app. Both the MetaTrader 4 and Trade Station apps are free.

Deposits & Withdrawals

FXCM supports deposits and withdrawals through credit/debit card, wire transfer, and other methods depending on your region.

Withdrawals completed via credit/debit card do not incur any fees. Withdrawals via wire transfer, on the other hand, require a $40 fee, which is comparable to transfer fees charged by other major brokers. Additionally, FXCM doesn’t have any limits on withdrawals, and it typically only takes two to three business days to receive funds.

Additional Resources

One of the most attractive features offered by FXCM is its vast educational center which provides a number of resources to help both novice and experienced trainers develop more effective strategies.

The video library includes videos on a wide range of topics, such as charts, deposits/withdrawals, new to forex, order types, trading station features, and more.

Forex Overview
FXCM Video Library

The Trading Guide section includes five detailed guides covering the following topics:

  • New to Forex
  • From Stocks to FX
  • Market Scanner Guide
  • Traits of Successful Traders
  • Trading Station User Guide

These guides are completely free and intended to help traders of any level expand their knowledge.

The Webinar Archives contain recorded live classroom sessions on different topics, such as trading psychology, intro to automated strategies, and understanding price action.

Moreover, FXCM offers in-person seminars every Wednesday after 6 pm at its head office in the United Kingdom. These seminars offer insights from experts that are sure to help beginners and advanced traders become more knowledgeable.

Lastly, FXCM has its own app store which offers customers a wide range of tools and indicators that can be integrated with its trading platforms. Some popular choices include:

  • SSI Snapshots
  • FXCM News
  • Risk Management Indicator

These add-ons, alongside countless others that are offered through the app store, can be used to upgrade FXCM’s trading platforms as you see fit.

FXCM Video Library

FXCM App Store

Customer Service

Of course, customer service is an important consideration when choosing a broker. FXCM offers 24/5 customer support available through phone, e-mail and live chat. Additionally, due to its international customer base, FXCM customer service is available in 14 different languages, including English, Arabic, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Chinese, and more.

Final Thoughts

FXCM is an ideal choice for both beginner and advanced traders due to a variety of factors. First and foremost, FXCM offers incredibly competitive spreads and commission rates by default. These costs become even more competitive for traders who achieve Active Trader status and the additional savings it offers.

Moreover, FXCM’s various trading platforms, including  Trading Station, provide several powerful, user-friendly options to satisfy any trader’s specific needs.

Lastly, its incredibly-useful educational resources make FXCM a great option for traders who are dedicated to learning and expanding their knowledge.

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