CFD Broker Summary
Founded under the name Gain Capital Holdings in 2001, FOREX.com is headquartered in New York and regulated in the US (which means the company can accept US clients), UK, Australia, Japan, Hong Kong and Canada. FOREX.com’s stable history in the markets has helped to forge a reputation of strong regulatory compliance, transparency in pricing and execution, and high quality trading technology. The website itself contains a large amount of trading education plus technical and fundamental news, suggesting the company has a clear focus to cater to both new and experienced traders. Given the size of the company, it is not entirely surprising to see that FOREX.com offers excellent customer service (through Live Chat, phone, and email) that is available any time the markets are open and trading. This level of support can be especially helpful whether you’re a new or experienced trader. FOREX.com’s TRADE platfrom also has one of the most comprehensive fx market lists in the business, with a wide variety of exotic crosses not offered by many companies.
Trading Markets Offered
Contrary to what the name suggests, one of the highlights at FOREX.com is the wide range of markets that are offered covering both Forex and CFD trading. In forex alone, their platform TRADE offers access to more than 300 currency pairs, many of which are exclusive. For traders focused on stocks, more than 30 global stock indices are available (along with maximum leverage of up to 400:1).
In commodities markets, metals (such as gold and silver), energy products (such as oil), and soft commodities (such as grains) can be traded. For bond traders, bond CFDs from around the world are made available (at leverage of up to 200:1). The last major category is interest rates, and while this is the smallest of the bunch, is still relatively impressive and can be traded with leverage of as much as 400:1.
In software platforms, FOREX.com offers 3 excellent choices that cater to different trading styles. The two proprietary platforms offered by the company are TRADE and FOREXtrader PRO. TRADE is a CFD trading platform offering tight fixed spreads on all markets, including forex – this means the spreads will not change when market conditions become more volatile as is often seen with other brokers. It’s exclusively web-based (desktop or mobile) and has sophisticated trading tools in Market DNA and Strategy Builder that can’t be found anywhere else. Contract sizes start at just 0.1 CFDs, there’s instant execution which guarantees no slippage on trades and price improvement up to an unlimited amount.
On the other hand, FOREXTrader PRO is a traditional forex trading platform allowing you to trade in pip and lots with variable spreads. It’s fully customisable and available via web (including Mac), download and mobile.
If neither of these are preferable for you, the MetaTrader 4 platform is also available with variable spreads. This will be viewed as a good choice for traders with strategies that are heavily influenced by technical analysis or EA applications. FOREX.com offer two free EA’s with their MetaTrader platform which integrate their extensive technical research and offer increased trading functionality beyond the standard MT4 package. For those looking to trade using Expert Advisors, they also offer free EA hosting to qualifying clients.
A good deal of Forex.com’s focus is placed on making charting packages for all experience levels. Both TRADE and FOREXTrader PRO have a large variety of indicators, oscillators, and drawing tools as well as display setting to allow you to watch your most commonly traded markets. Further, trading from charts is available in both platforms. For those with the most advanced technical analysis strategies, the MetaTrader 4 software is still a good choice. Overall, Forex.com offers some of the best charting packages in the business.
One area that Forex.com is most deficient is in its special offerings. Currently, there are no special bonus offerings for new clients. This is not uncommon, as the company relies on its previous reputation to draw new clients, rather than monetary based incentives.
Site Strengths/ Weaknesses
Site strengths can be seen in the extensive market research that is posted on a daily and weekly basis. In addition to this, the insights (such as comments before and after news releases, or updates on technical analysis levels) offered by the company’s global research team are integrated into their platforms. Other strengths include the fixed spreads on Forex markets, the extensive market list and the impressive charting package. Weaknesses can be seen in their lack of promotional offers for new traders.
Overall, Forex.com offers a very comprehensive trading package for both new and experienced users and has a justifiable reputation as one of the leading brokers in the industry. Whether you’re looking for a proprietary CFD trading platform with fixed spreads, a traditional FX platform with variable spreads, or MetaTrader 4, FOREX.com has highly competitive options available for most traders. Customer service is easy to access and trading accounts can be opened for as little as $250. Pay special attention to the regularly updated market research pieces, as these are exclusive and cannot be found in other media outlets.