CopyOp Broker Review

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Contents

Best Copy Trading Forex Brokers

Home » Forex » Best Copy Trading Forex Brokers

Finding the best copy trading or social trading forex broker that has the features you need can be tough.

While there are a ton of places to trade Forex in the world, some traders find quite a bit of comfort in copying other more experienced traders. Over the last several years, we have seen a significant number of brokers offer this service, where other traders will place trades that you can either follow automatically or choose selectively.

This allows the beginning trader to see how a more advanced trader may look at the markets.

Top Brokers Minimum Deposit Max Leverage Regulations
$100 1:50 CFTC, NFA VISIT BROKER
$50 1:200 IFSC VISIT BROKER
$10 1:1000 FSC, CySEC, FCA, FSP VISIT BROKER

That being said, it’s crucial that you pay close attention to the risk profile of traders that you are following. It is not uncommon at all to see a trader at the top of the charts when we, only to disappear the next as they blow up their account by over leveraging their position size. As a general rule, if the trader is up some outrageous amount of money in a very short amount of time, they should be avoided. In other words, if something is too good to be true, it probably is.

Let’s check out some of the most popular social copy trading platforms and forex brokers on the market today.

Compare the Top Forex Brokers for Social Copy Trading in 2020

Here’s a list of the best forex brokers for copy trading that have awesome social trading platforms.

eToro

eToro has been around since 2007, and most people look at it as the place where copy trading had begun. They are from Tel Aviv, Israel and have offices around the world. That being said, they do not offer Forex trading to US citizens, as they are only regulated for crypto and that contrary. Their offices include facilities in Limassol, Cyprus and London, England as well. They offer a proprietary platform that is well tested and liked by novice and expert traders like.

As they are one of the first to offer the service, they are considered to be a leader when it comes to copy trading. They have a nice interface that allows you to look at leaders as they have a list of all of the traders and their results of the last week, and then going back various time frames. With that being the case, it’s very likely that you will find this to be an excellent place to do trade copying, if that is something that you are looking for.

Account Stats

Leverage: Forex allows for 1:100 leverage in trading, while stock CFDs are at 1:5, commodities at 1:10, ETF markets at 1:2, and then finally indices at 1:5 leverage. If you are following another trader, you can adjust your position size accordingly, and therefore use much less leverage if you choose to.

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Minimum deposits allowed: The minimum deposit for opening an account at eToro is $200, but just $50 if you are in the United States or Australia, but with the withdrawal fee a $50 account isn’t going to do much for you. The withdrawal fee isn’t outrageous, but it’s much more expensive than other places. If this is a small account that you are opening, eToro will be for you.

Regulations:

Payment Options: Payment options at eToro include Visa, MasterCard, Diners Club International, PayPal, Skrill, Neteller, UnionPay, WebMoney, and Yandex.

US customers: Yes, but only allowed to trade crypto CFDs. If you are looking to trade Forex and based in the United States, you will have to look elsewhere.

  • Allows you to follow more experienced traders
  • Allows to look at history
  • Can choose several different strategies
  • Multiple assets to follow
  • Easy to be fooled by lucky traders
  • Doesn’t improve your trading by simply following

Bottom Line

The reality is that eToro is one of the longest running trade copying services out there. That being said, the spreads at eToro leave a bit to be desired. Beyond that, eToro tends to attract a lot of newbie traders, so you need to be very cautious about who you follow. While the technology works fairly well, you need to find a trader who is relatively stable with their results, something that you don’t see much on a platform like this.

ZuluTrade

ZuluTrade is a bit of a different animal than most brokerage firms. This is because it is more of a social trading marketplace than a broker. It simply connects traders to each other through Metatrader 4 and 5 accounts to send signals or follow signals. It gives you access to over 10,000 traders from 192 countries globally. There is a platform, but it’s more or less an online dashboard that gives you an idea as to how traders are doing, what traders you can connect to, and you can even go so far as to connect to multiple traders.

Initially founded in Virginia back in 2007, the company has since moved to Athens, Greece. It’s owned by the Formax Group, as it is a subsidiary. They have even been awarded and EU From folio Management License, bringing forth a bit more in the way of credibility as well.

Account Stats

Leverage: ZuluTrade isn’t a broker, so leverage will be determined by your host broker. The platform simply passes a signal from one account to another, so your leverage will be as high as the broker you use allows. ZuluTrade has no effect on that whatsoever.

Minimum deposits allowed: The minimum deposit for opening an account depends on the broker that you use, as there are different levels that different brokers will ask. However, there are some fees to be aware of when using ZuluTrade, which will be an additional spread based upon each trade that you take. That being said though, it does tend to be relatively small. It is how the signal provider gets paid, as well as the company itself.

Regulations:

Payment Options: Payment options ZuluTrade are PayPal, bank wire, and ZuluTrade Mastercard.

US customers: Yes, as it isn’t a brokerage.

  • Allows you to follow more experienced traders
  • Allows to look at history
  • Can choose several different strategies
  • Multiple assets to follow
  • Allowed to parse out the percentages you follow of multiple traders
  • Easy to be fooled by lucky traders
  • Doesn’t improve your trading by simply following
  • Adds a bit to spread
  • MetaTrader only

Bottom Line

ZuluTrade is a mixed bag in the sense that it depends on who you are following and whether or not they are reliable. The service itself does a great job of connecting traders, and essentially that’s all you are looking for here. Don’t be fooled, this is a simple connection between a couple of terminals. The one issue is that you have to use the Metatrader ecosystem. Having said that though, most of the brokers around the world use that platform so for 90% of you won’t be an issue.

ZuluTrade is very reliable and well-known in the industry. This is a market connection service that has been trusted by thousands of traders around the world and has a bright future as it is one of the leaders in the industry. That being said, the technology is tried-and-true, which of course is a major benefit.

Trade360

Trade360 is a brokerage based in Cyprus that facilitates traders following each other. Social trading is something that the brokerage prides itself on, as the market for trade copying is expanding. The spreads at this brokerage are reasonable, but they’re not necessarily the cheapest. The brokerage allows a web-based interface that requires no download, but they also offer a mobile application as well.

The display of each asset is displayed as a ticker, and the layout is very easy and clean to read. This is one of the best advantages for using Trade360, as beginners can feel comfortable using it. Beyond that though, if you choose to use a more standard platform, then Metatrader 5 is also available to trade assets. They offer Forex, stocks CFD markets, indices, commodities, ETF CFD markets, offering the world at your fingertips.

Account Stats

Leverage: Trade360 is a Cypriot broker, so leverage is as high as 1:400 on Forex, just as it is on commodity CFD markets. Stock CFD markets offer 1:20 leverage, and indices offer 1:50 leverage. Because of this, leverage is very strong and it’s very likely that the trader will find plenty of opportunity with that type of low margin required.

Minimum deposits allowed: The minimum deposit to open an account at Trade360 is $250, which is reasonable and accessible.

Regulations:

Payment Options: Payment options at Trade 360 include credit card, bank wire, Skrill, PaySafeCard, Neteller, Trustly Group AB, Emerchantpay, and Credorax.

US customers: No, as they offer CFDs.

  • Allows you to follow “the crowd”
  • Multiple assets to follow
  • Easy to be fooled by lucky traders
  • No Americans allowed
  • Doesn’t play out particular traders, only gives overall score

Bottom Line

The bottom line is that this brokerage firm allows you to follow other traders in what they call “crowd trading”, but this isn’t so much in automatic process, it simply shows you where traders around the world that are clients of this brokerage are trading a particular asset.

At this point, it’s very difficult to recommend this brokerage though, because there isn’t as much in the way of transparency as I would like to see. It’s one thing to follow a professional or experience trader with a track record, but to simply look at how many people are buying, and selling isn’t necessarily the best way to go. In fact, most professional traders look at where retail traders are positioned as a contrary indicator. In other words, if they see a large majority of retail traders buying the Euro, they start selling.

FXPro

FXPro was established in 2006, in London, England. They offer not only Forex, but CFD markets in shares, spot indices, futures, spot metals, and spot energies. They have a non-dealing desk approach to the markets, offering floating spreads. They have been regulated in multiple countries and have over €100 million in company capital. In other words, it is extraordinarily well funded, and therefore is going to be here for the duration of your trading career. FXPro has its own social/mirror trading platform that works within the brokerage that allows people to choose who to follow.

They are also sponsors of several major sporting teams, and therefore are highly visible around the world. This includes football, F1, and many of the other major markets. They have gained over 60 international awards, and offer Metatrader 4 and 5, cTrader, and their own platform, FXProEdge.

Account Stats

Leverage: Leverage at FXPro is relatively high, with a maximum leverage of 1:500 for currencies. Spreads are variable, but keep in mind that depending on what you are trading the leverage may change per instrument.

Minimum deposits allowed: The minimum deposit for opening an account at FXPro is $200, and therefore it’s easy to meet the bare minimum to get involved. That being said though, the markets that are offered here should attract much more of your trading capital as you are allowed to trade global assets.

Regulations:

  • CySEC (Cyprus)
  • FCA (UK)
  • FSCA (South Africa)
  • MENA (Dubai)
  • SIA (Bahamas)

Payment Options: Payment options at FXPro include credit cards, PayPal, Skrill, Neteller, and UnionPay.

US customers: No, as they offer CFDs. They are not regulated in the USA.

  • Multiple assets to follow
  • The broker ecosystem allows for great asset allocation
  • Easy to be fooled by lucky traders
  • FXPro traders only

Bottom Line

FXPro is one of the largest brokerage firms in the world, and therefore has a long track record of servicing clients. With the reputation that this brokerage has globally, it makes quite a bit of sense that the social trading platform will be somewhat bulletproof, especially considering that the platform itself has been around since Q4 2020. Quite frankly, this is a very strong broker to begin with, and the service of course will only add to the value that you see at FXPro. The wide array of assets that are available also makes it a very attractive proposition.

Pepperstone

Pepperstone has been around since 2020 and is based out of Melbourne, Australia. The brokerage firm allows trade copying through the ZuluTrade system, so in a sense it’s almost like a “introducing broker” situation. That doesn’t mean that you should write it off right away, it’s just a service that Pepperstone offers to their clients. The broker offers a huge amount of tradable assets including Forex, commodities, indices, stocks, crypto, and futures.

They use the Metatrader 4 and 5 platforms, cTrader, and of course the ZuluTrade interface. These are the industry standards, so 99.9% of traders out there will be very comfortable using one of the three major platforms, and you will find that the ZuluTrade interface very easy to use.

Account Stats

Leverage: Leverage at Pepperstone is high, with a maximum leverage of 1:500 for currencies. Leverage changes for other instruments, just as they would anywhere else.

Minimum deposits allowed: The minimum deposit for opening an account at Pepperstone is $500, which is reasonable for opening a brokerage account. Quite frankly, if you are going to trade multiple assets, you need to have enough to trade with to begin with. The smaller trader will continue to be able to trade elsewhere, but quite frankly if you don’t have enough money to diversify, it doesn’t make much sense to follow multiple traders which is the best way to diversify via copying.

Regulations:

Payment Options: Payment options at Pepperstone include credit cards, PayPal, Skrill, Neteller, bank transfer, POLi, BPay, and UnionPay. This will allow most traders to get funding and withdraw requests done quickly and easily.

US customers: No, as they offer CFDs. Pepperstone has no plans on entering the US markets.

  • Allows you to follow more experienced traders
  • Allows to look at history
  • Can choose several different strategies
  • Uses the well-known ZuluTrade interface
  • None, as long as you do due diligence on strategies

Bottom Line

Pepperstone is the biggest Australian broker out there, and therefore has been trusted by thousands of traders not only in Australia, but around Asia. Ultimately, it is a well trusted and heavily regulated broker that you should feel comfortable trading at. Beyond that, they also offer the heavily tested ZuluTrade platform, making it a great place to follow others.

Darwinex

Darwinex is a brokerage service that matches traders with investors. Founded in 2020, it is a completely different situation than most of these brokers. Depending on which direction you’re going, you either place trades via the Metatrader ecosystem, or in the case of the investor, you are looking through a long list of potential traders to invest in. You aren’t necessarily trading signals; you are allowing other people to take control of your account. Those who provide systems that are traded get a 20% payout of all the profits from managed accounts that they control.

As an investor, one of the best parts about the Darwinex platform is that it is all driven by AI. The platform allows people to trade currencies, indices, and Forex, but more importantly build up a longer-term track record for you to pay attention to. In that sense, it’s almost like a marketplace of trading strategies. If you are a trader, it’s a great way to build up a reputation.

Account Stats

Leverage: Leverage at Pepperstone is high, with a maximum leverage of 1:20 for currencies. Leverage changes to 1:10 for commodities, 1:1 for crypto, 1:5 for stocks, and 1:10 for indices.

Minimum deposits allowed: The minimum deposit for opening an account at Darwinex is $500, allowing you to build a track record, or start investing. That being said, if you are trying to build up a track record to attract clientele, larger accounts make more sense. Otherwise, if you are an investor you can simply push money into the markets over the longer term and in bits and pieces.

Regulations:

Payment Options: Payment options at Darwinex include credit cards, bank transfers, Trustly, and Skrill.

US customers: No, as they offer CFDs. However, they can invest.

  • Allows you to follow more experienced traders
  • History of traders is built up over time before being seen
  • No control over trades, all done automatically

Bottom Line

Darwinex is a bit of a different animal as it is an AI driven marketplace. It does feature a lot of quantitative trading as well, as many of the traders use automatic processes. At this point, Darwinex is only growing in its reputation, as it has over 3000 traders currently helping others make money. It is highly regulated and allows for diversification through various traders. You can put a portion with one trader, while you put another portion of your portfolio with another. Because of this, you have the ability to have a more conservative system running a particular percentage of your investment capital, while a smaller percent might be aggressive.

FXCM has been around since 1999, and is currently based in London, England. They offer trading of currencies, indices, crypto, and commodity CFD markets. They have the ability to handle algorithmic trading and offer extensive education and research. They offer the Metatrader ecosystem, as well as Trading Station which is a proprietary platform. Through these, you can follow others. That being said, FXCM has a whole host of issues that comes along with it.

FXCM’s troubles began in the United States after the Swiss National Bank removed the peg to the Euro on January 15, 2020. This was a massive change in value and the brokerage loss $225 million, putting it in breach of regulatory capital requirements in the United States. It did receive a $300 million bailout loan with a 10% interest rate from Leucadia to meet its capital requirements. Long story short, the brokerage was on the other side of several customers trades, and not offering a “no dealing desk” situation as they had advertised. Beyond that, in 2020 the National Futures Association issued a $2 million fine to FXCM for slippage malpractice. In other words, the company has a long history of fraudulent behavior. That being said, there have not been any issues since leaving the United States.

Account Stats

Leverage: Leverage at FXCM is low, due to UK regulations. For currencies, it is 1:30, but is out of the hands of FXCM.

Minimum deposits allowed: The minimum deposit for opening an account at FXCM is $50, which is very small and allows almost anybody to get involved. That being said, $50 will simply be enough to test out the platform, not necessarily make significant profits.

Regulations:

Payment Options: Payment options at FXCM include credit cards, Skrill, bank transfer, Western Union, PayPal, and Neteller.

US customers: No, as they were kicked out of the US markets for committing fraud.

  • Regulated in UK
  • 20 years in the business
  • Lost US license due to fraudulent behavior.

Bottom Line

FXCM is a brokerage firm that has been trying to repair its reputation for some time. Having said that, there are far too many brokerages out there that you can get involved with without taking any of the risks that the company has already shown itself to exposure to. Fraud is something that should be taken seriously, and quite frankly there’s no reason to take on the extra risk that comes along with a company that has been caught a couple of times in the past ripping its customers off.

Common Copy Social Trading Questions

Here are some of the most common copy social trading questions that people have with their forex brokers.

Yes. Copy trading is legal in most jurisdictions. This includes the United States, but just because it is legal doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s always the smart thing to do. You need to do your due diligence in order to get the right trader to follow, and quite frankly over the longer term it doesn’t necessarily serve you better and less of course you have a significant lack of time. If you have the desire to learn how to trade, this can be a great “stopgap”, but at the end of the day you can find plenty of license professionals in your country that follow much more stringent guidelines. That being said, a small part of your portfolio could be attached to one of these accounts.

How Does Copy Trading Work?

Essentially, what happens is that a trader places a trade in their own account, and your account will either follow, or you will get some type of email or signal as to what they are doing. Ultimately, this is a “lazy way” to take advantage of someone else’s talents, when you think about it it’s the same thing as investing anywhere else. Looking at the various brokers and venues in this article, you can see that there are a plethora of ways to do this, either automatically or simply following signals.

What is Copy Trading in Forex?

Copy trading in Forex is simply using another traders skill in order to profit. Some traders will use it to “pad their account” as they learn how to trade the Forex markets. Some investors will allocate a certain amount of investing capital into those traders that are leading the way. Ultimately, this is another way to invest in a diversified portfolio for those looking to benefit from fluctuations in markets.

Who Would I Recommend?

The ZuluTrade platform is one of the most trusted platforms that you can use when it comes to copy trading. eToro is a reasonable choice, but only if you are just starting out. I also like Darwinex, as it is a bit of a “marketplace” of artificial intelligence and those traders that have been building up a record that you can plainly see. It is because of this that I believe Darwinex is head and shoulders above the rest.

However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t use FXPro, eToro, ZuluTrade, or the others, with the exception of FXCM because of obvious issues.

Interactive Brokers Review 2020

Summary

Recommended for traders looking for low fees and a professional trading environment

Interactive Brokers was founded in 1978 and is one of the biggest US-based discount brokers. The broker is regulated by several financial authorities globally, including top-tier ones like the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

As it has licenses from multiple top-tier regulators, the broker is considered safe. Also, having a long track record and publicly disclosed financials while being listed on a stock exchange are also great signs for its safety.

We selected Interactive Brokers as Best online broker, Best broker for day trading and Best broker for futures for 2020, based on an in-depth analysis of 57 online brokers that included testing their live accounts. Check out the complete list of winners.

Interactive Brokers pros and cons

Interactive Brokers has the widest selection of markets and products among online brokers, with a lot of great research tools, and it is regulated by a lot of financial authorities.

On the other hand, most users can only make deposits and withdrawals via bank transfer. We recommend this broker for advanced traders, as the account opening process is complicated and the desktop trading platform is not user-friendly.

Pros Cons
• Wide range of products • Extremely complex desktop trading platform
• Many great research tools • Complicated account opening process
• Regulated by several authorities • High inactivity fee
Interactive Brokers main features and highlights
��️ Country of regulation UK, USA, India, Australia, Canada, Japan, Hong Kong
�� Trading fees class Low
�� Inactivity fee charged Yes
�� Withdrawal fee amount $0
�� Minimum deposit $0
�� Time to open an account 1-3 days
�� Deposit with credit card Not available
�� Depositing with electronic wallet Not available
�� Number of base currencies supported 19
�� Demo account provided Yes
��️ Products offered Stock, ETF, Forex, Fund, Bond, Options, Futures, CFD, Crypto, Warrants, Structured Products, Indices, Metals

Gergely Korpos

Author of this review

Everything you find on BrokerChooser is based on reliable data and unbiased information. We combine our 10+ years finance experience with readers feedback. Read more about our methodology

Interactive Brokers review
Fees

Interactive Brokers has low trading fees and for US clients, stock and ETF trading is free. On the negative side, there is a high inactivity fee for non-US clients.

Pros Cons
• Low trading fees • Inactivity fee
• Low stock and ETF fees
• Low financing rate
• Free stock and ETF trading for US clients

Interactive Brokers fees snapshot

Assets Fee level Fee terms
US stock Low $0.005 per share, min. $1, max. 1% of trade value. Free for US clients choosing IBKR Lite plan.
EURUSD Average Trade value less than $1,000 million: 0.2 bps * trade value with $2 min.
Mutual fund Average $14.95 per transaction or 3% of trade value, whichever is lower
Inactivity fee High $20 per month if you have less than $2,000 account balance and if you don’t generate minimum $20 in commissions. $10 for accounts having at least $2,000 account balance, while no inactivity fee for US clients choosing IBKR Lite plan.

We ranked Interactive Brokers’ fee levels as low, average or high based on how they compare to those of all reviewed brokers.

To get things rolling, let’s go over some lingo related to broker fees. What you need to keep an eye on are trading fees and non-trading fees.

  • Trading fees occur when you trade. These can be commissions, spreads, financing rates or conversion fees.
  • Non-trading fees include charges not directly related to trading, like withdrawal fees or inactivity fees.

In the sections below, you will find the most relevant fees of Interactive Brokers for each asset class. For example, in the case of stock investing commissions are the most important fees.

We also compared Interactive Brokers’s fees with those of two similar brokers we selected, Saxo Bank and Degiro. This selection is based on objective factors such as products offered, client profile, fee structure, etc. See a more detailed rundown of Interactive Brokers alternatives.

To have a clear overview of Interactive Brokers, let’s start with the trading fees.

Interactive Brokers trading fees

Interactive Brokers’s trading fees are low. Because of this, it is also recommended if you a lot of trades frequently.

You can choose between Interactive Brokers’s fixed rate and tiered price plans:

  • The fixed rate price plan typically charges a fixed rate per contract or share. This charge covers all commissions and exchange fees.
  • The tiered price plan charges fees based on your monthly trading volume. The more you trade, the lower the commissions are. However, exchange, regulatory and clearing fees may be charged additionally.

Since the end of 2020, clients from the US can choose a new service plan, called IBKR LITE. With this service plan, you can trade US-listed stocks and ETFs commission-free without any inactivity fees.

In this review, we tested the fixed rate plan.

Stock fees and ETF fees

Interactive Brokers has generally low stock and ETF commissions.

Stock and ETF commission of a $2,000 trade

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
US stock $1.0 $10.0 $0.6
UK stock $7.2 $9.6 $2.4
German stock $4.4 $11.0 $5.4

The Interactive Brokers stock trading fee is volume-based: either per share or a percentage of the trade value, with a minimum and maximum. ETF fees are the same as stock fees.

Interactive Brokers stock fees

Belgium, France, Xetra, Italy, Netherlands

Market Commission Min Max
North America
$0.005 / share $1 1% of the trade value
CAD 0.01 / share CAD 1 0.5% of the trade value
0.1 % of the trade value MXN 60 No
Europe
UK up to £50,000 trade volume £6.00 £6 £6
UK more than £50,000 trade volume £6.00 + 0.05% of trade value £6 £29
0.1% of the trade value €4 €29
Switzerland 0.1% of the trade value CHF 10 No
Spain 0.1% of the trade value €4 No
Austria 0.1% of the trade value €4 €120
Poland 0.1% of the trade value PLN 15 No
0.05% of the trade value NOK/SEK 49 No
0.15% of the trade value €6 No
Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania 0.2% of the trade value €10 No
Hungary 0.1% of the trade value HUF 200 No
Asia-Pacific
0.08% of the trade value AUD 6 No
0.08% of the trade value HKD 18 No
0.08% of the trade value JPY 80 No
0.08% of the trade value SGD 2.5 No
India 0,01% of the trade value INR 6 INR 20

If you prefer stock trading on a margin or short sale, you should check Interactive Brokers’s financing rates.

What is the financing rate? Financing rates or margin rates are charged when you trade on margin or short a stock. This basically means that you borrow money or stocks from your broker to trade, for which you have to pay interest. This is the financing rate, and it can be a significant proportion of your trading costs.

Interactive Brokers financing rates are low. The financing rates vary based on your account base currency and the amount you borrow.

Interactive Brokers annual financing rates for stocks, futures and options

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
USD margin rate 2.6% 3.1%
GBP margin rate 2.0% 1.9%
EUR margin rate 1.5% 0.8%

As of March 2020, the rates for different debit balances in USD ranged between 2.15-3.35%.

Interactive Brokers annual financing rates, USD

Debit balance Rate%
$200,000,000.01 – 1.39%
$3,000,000.01 – $200,000,000 1.39%
$1,000,000.01 – $3,000,000 1.59%
$100,000.01 – $1,000,000 2.09%
Under $100,000 2.59%

Forex fees

Interactive Brokers’s forex fees are average, with higher fees for the most-traded EURUSD.

To have a clear picture of forex fees we calculated a forex benchmark fee for major currency pairs. This catch-all benchmark includes commissions, spreads and financing costs for all brokers.

Forex benchmark fee of a $20,000 30:1 long position held for one week

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
EURUSD benchmark fee $17.9 $15.5
GBPUSD benchmark fee $13.6 $12.8
AUDUSD benchmark fee $12.0 $13.7
EURCHF benchmark fee $7.1 $4.6
EURGBP benchmark fee $13.0 $10.2

When you trade forex, IB charges a volume-based commission. The higher the volume of your trades, the lower commission you pay.

Interactive Brokers forex commissions

Monthly traded amount Commission Min
USD ≤ 1,000,000,000 0.20 basis point of the trade value $2.00
USD 1,000,000,001 – 2,000,000,000 0.15 basis point of the trade value $1.50
USD 2,000,000,001 – 5,000,000,000 0.10 basis point of the trade value $1.25
USD > 5,000,000,000 0.08 basis point of the trade value $1.00

Fund fees

Interactive Brokers’s mutual fund fees are average. We calculated the fees for US mutual funds.

Interactive Brokers commission for a $2,000 fund purchase

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank Degiro
Mutual fund $15.0 $0.0 $10.3

The mutual fund fees are different among ranges. The fee structure is percentage based and can have a minimum and a maximum.

Interactive Brokers fund fees

Country Commission Min Max
US 3% of the trade value or $14.95, whichever is lower
US funds with no transaction fees 0% $0 $0.00
Europe 0.1% of the trade value €4 €29.00
Global 3% of the trade value or $14.95, whichever is lower

Bond fees

Interactive Brokers has generally low bond fees.

Commission of a $10,000 government bond trade

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
US Treasury bond $5.0 $88.0
EU government bond $10.0 $88.0 $10.5

Interactive Brokers charges a volume-based commission with a minimum amount.

Interactive Brokers bond fees

Bonds Volume Commission Min Max
US Corporate Face value ≤ 10,000 0.10% * face value $1 $250 or 1% of trade value, whichever is lower
US Treasuries Face value ≤ 1,000,000 0.02% * face value $5 No
Europe Trade value ≤ 50,000 0.10% * trade value €2 No
Hong Kong Government Trade value ≤ 15,000,000 0.08% * trade value HKD 18 No

Options fees

The options fees at Interactive Brokers are generally low.

Stock index options commission of 10 contracts

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
US stock index options $7.0 $40.0 $5.0
UK stock index options $20.4 $36.0
German stock index options $12.1 $44.0 $9.9

You pay options fees depending on the number of contracts you trade.

Interactive Brokers options fees for stock index options

Market Commission Min
North America – all options
US, monthly contracts Stock index futures commission of 10 contracts
Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
US stock index futures $8.5 $40.0 $5.0
UK stock index futures $20.4 $36.0 $27.5
German stock index futures $22.0 $44.0 $8.3

Similarly to options, you pay a commission based on the number of contracts you trade.

Interactive Brokers futures fees for stock index futures

Futures Commission
North America
US $0.85 / contract
Canada CAD 2.4 / contract (min CAD 2.4)
Mexico MXN 20 / contract (min MXN 20)
Europe
Belgium €4.5 / contract (min €4.5)
France, Germany €2 / contract (min €2)
Italy, Netherlands, Spain €3 / contract (min €3)
Switzerland CHF 4 / contract (min €4)
UK GBP 1.7 / contract (min GPB 1.7)
Asia-Pacific
Australia AUD 6.25 / contract (min AUD 6.25)
Hong Kong HKD 30 / contract (min HKD 30)
Japan JPY 500 / contract (min JPY 500)
Singapore SGD 4 / contract (min SGD 4)

CFD fees

Interactive Brokers charges low CFD trading fees.

To have a clear understanding of CFD fees we calculated a CFD benchmark fee for the selected products. This catch-all benchmark includes commissions, spreads and financing costs for all brokers.

CFD benchmark fees, for a $2,000 long position held for one week

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
S&P 500 index CFD fee $3.6 $2.2
Europe 50 index CFD fee $2.9 $2.1
Apple CFD fee $3.5 $22.2
Vodafone CFD fee $8.2 $21.3

We calculated with 20:1 leverage for stock index CFDs and 5:1 leverage for single stock CFDs.

In the case of stock index CFDs, all fees are incorporated into the spreads. When you trade stock CFDs, you pay a volume-tiered commission.

Interactive Brokers stock CFD fees

CFDs Monthly traded amount Commission Min
US share CFDs ≤ $300,000 $0.005 per share $1.0
European share CFDs ≤ €10,000,000 0.05% €3.0
Australian share CFDs ≤ AUD 10,000,000 0.05% AUD 5.0
Hong Kong Share CFDs ≤ HKD 300,000,000 0.05% HKD 12.0
Japanese Share CFDs ≤ 9,000,000,000 0.03% JPY 100.0
US 500 index CFD 0.005% $1.0
UK 100 index CFD 0.005% GBP 1.0
Japan 225 index CFD 0.01% JPY 40.0
Forex CFD ≤ 1,000,000,000 0.20 basis points * trade value $2.0

Crypto fees

You can trade cryptocurrencies through futures and ETNs (exchange-traded notes).

  • You can trade with Bitcoin futures on the CME Group and Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE). The commission on one Bitcoin futures contract is $10 at the CME and $5 at the CBOE.
  • Bitcoin and Ether ETNs are available on the Stockholm Stock Exchange. IB charges a 0.05% fee when you trade on the Stockholm Stock Exchange and the minimum amount is SEK 49.

If you want to learn more about crypto trading, check out our crypto blogpost.

Asset management service

Interactive Brokers provides an asset management service, called Interactive Advisors. It is a mix of mutual funds and a robo-advisor. It’s suitable for you if you don’t want to manage your investments on your own or just need a bit more confidence in investing.

Besides the usual brokerage commissions, there is an annual management fee ranging from 0.08% to 1.50%, depending on the amount you invest. The required minimum investment amount is $5,000.

There are two ways to invest with Interactive Advisor:

  1. Answer a couple of questions, based on which Interactive Advisor will compile a portfolio that is automatically rebalanced.
  2. Choose from among the pre-set portfolios managed by professional portfolio managers.

Non-trading fees

Interactive Brokers has average non-trading fees. There is no account or deposit fee. The first withdrawal each month is also free of charge, while subsequent withdrawals carry a fee.

On the negative side, the inactivity fee is high. The amount of inactivity fee depends on many factors.

Interactive Brokers non-trading fees

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
Account fee No No No
Inactivity fee Yes Yes No
Deposit fee $0 $0 $0
Withdrawal fee $0 $0 $0

The inactivity fee depends on your account balance, your age, and there are waivers which might apply:

Interactive Brokers’ inactivity fee

1) First three calendar month it’s waived

2) Total assets’ value is more than $100,000

1) First three calendar month it’s waived

2) Total assets’ value is more than $100,000

*If you generate a commission in the calendar month, then it’ll be the difference between the commission you generated and the inactivity fee. For example, if you generate a $15 commission and have an account balance of less than $2,000, then the monthly inactivity fee is $5.

Interactive Brokers review
Account opening

IB’s account opening process is fully digital and the required minimum deposit is low. On the negative side, the online registration is complicated and account verification takes around 2 business days.

Account balance less than $2,000 Account balance above $2,000 Account owner is younger than 25 years old
Monthly inactivity fee $20* $10* $3*
Potential waivers Not applicable
Pros Cons
• Fully digital • Not user-friendly
• No minimum deposit for most accounts types • Confusing messages throughout the process

Can you open an account?

Interactive Brokers is present on every continent, so you can most likely open an account. Only countries with highly unstable political or economic backgrounds are excluded, such as North Korea.

What is the minimum deposit at Interactive Brokers?

The required Interactive Brokers minimum deposit is $0 . However, there is a $2,000 minimum if you would like to trade on margin or short sale. Trading on margin means that you are trading with borrowed money, also known as leverage.

Account types

Interactive Brokers offers many account types, which fall into two big groups:

  • accounts for individual traders and investors
  • accounts for institutions

As an individual trader or investor, you can open many account types. A few of them, like an IRA account, are available only for US clients.

Interactive Brokers account types

Account types Short description
Individuals Account is owned and used by a single individual
Joint Account is owned and used by two individuals
Trust Account is held by a Trustee (separate legal entity) for your benefit
IRA Individual retirement account, which is only available for US clients
UGMA/UTMA Account for clients who are minors, which is only available for US clients
Friends and Family Account for a client group of up to 15 members
Family Office Account for an individual who is a Family Office Manager
Small Business Account for small corporations
Advisor Account for an individual who manages both client administration and the client’s money
Money Manager Account for an individual who is hired on behalf of another advisor.

Besides the various account types, you can choose from the IBKR PRO and IBKR LITE service plans if you are a US resident. They differ in pricing and available trading platforms.

Comparison of IBKR LITE and IBKR PRO

Features IBKR LITE IBKR PRO
Commission US exchange-listed stocks and ETFs are commission-free, while other products have fixed or tiered pricing Fixed or tiered pricing for all products
Account fee No account fee Up to $10 account fee per month
Trading features Client Portal, IBKR Mobile and IBot are available, but the desktop trading platform is not All platforms are available, including the desktop trading platform

Integrated Investment Management

Interactive Brokers has expanded the account features for US residents with the introduction of the Interactive Brokers debit card, and the Integrated Investment Management program. Such new features include:

  • Direct debit card deposits
  • Borrowing
  • Paying bills without checks through Bill Pay

All US cash and margin accounts are eligible for application. To apply, go to your Client PortalTransfer & Pay, then Debit Card menu.

How to open your account

The account opening process is fully digital but overly complicated. After your online registration, the account verification takes around 2 business days, which is a bit slower than the usual account verification time for most brokers.

At first, you have to go through a 5-step registration process, which takes roughly an hour. We experienced a few bugs and errors throughout the process, such as disappearing information and various error messages. It was complicated, with confusing and unclear messages.

During the account opening process, you have to provide some personal information and there are also questions about your trading experience.

In the end, you have to verify your identity and residency by uploading the required documents:

  • Verification of identity: passport / national ID / driver’s license
  • Verification of residency: bank statement / utility bill / driver’s license / credit card statement / other document

This is a standard process, which in financial lingo is called a KYC (know-your-customer) process. This is required to make sure you are truly identifiable.

Interactive Brokers review
Deposit and withdrawal

Interactive Brokers offers many account base currency options and one free withdrawal per month. The main drawbacks are that you can only use bank transfer and the process is not user-friendly.

Pros Cons
• No deposit fee • Credit/Debit card not available
• Several account base currencies • Not user-friendly
• First withdrawal each month free

Account base currencies

Interactive Brokers provides a lot of account base currencies, which is great if you trade with assets in various currencies.

Interactive Brokers account base currencies

Australian Dollar British Pound Canadian Dollar Chinese Yuan
Czech Koruna Danish Krone Euro Hong Kong Dollar
Hungarian Forint Israeli Shekel Japanese Yen Mexican Peso
New Zealand Dollar Norwegian Krone Russian Rouble Singapore Dollar
Swedish Krona Swiss Franc US Dollar

Compared to its competitors, you can see that IB’s selection is similar to that of Saxo Bank, while Degiro offers less base currencies.

Base currencies at Interactive Brokers compared to similar brokers

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
Number of base currencies 19 19 9

Why does this matter? For two reasons. If you fund your account in the same currency as your bank account or you trade assets in the same currency as your account base currency, you don’t have to pay a conversion fee.

A convenient way to save on the currency conversion fees is by opening a multi-currency bank account at a digital bank. Revolut or Transferwise both offer bank accounts in several currencies with great currency exchange rates as well as free or cheap international bank transfers. Opening an account only takes a few minutes on your phone.

Deposit fees and options

Interactive Brokers deposits are free of charge. However, deposit options are limited, as neither credit/debit cards nor electronic wallets can be used.

If you reside in the US, however, you have multiple extra options, such as:

  • ACH (Automated Clearing House)
  • Check
  • Online bill payment
  • Direct Rollover (IRA accounts only)
  • Trustee-to-Trustee (IRA accounts only)

Also, since early 2020 Interactive Brokers introduced direct debit card deposits as part of their Integrated Investment Management account. This is only available for US residents.

Australian clients can also use BPAY as a deposit method.

Interactive Brokers deposit options

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
Bank transfer Yes Yes Yes
Credit/Debit card No Yes No
Electronic wallets No No Yes

A bank transfer can take 2-3 business days to arrive. You can only deposit money from sources that are in your name.

Interactive Brokers withdrawal fees and options

The first withdrawal each month is free of charge, while subsequent withdrawals have a fee.

Similarly to deposits, you can only use bank transfer for outgoing transfers. US residents can also withdraw via ACH or check.

Interactive Brokers withdrawal fees and options

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
Bank Transfer Yes Yes Yes
Credit/Debit card No No No
Electronic wallets No No No
Withdrawal fee $0 $0 $0

The fee for subsequent withdrawals after the first free one depends on the currency and the method you use for withdrawal.

Interactive Brokers withdrawal fee

Withdrawal’s currency Wire BACS/GIRO/ACH/EFT/SEPA
USD* 10 1
EUR 8 1
GBP 7 1
CAD 12 2
CNH 60 7
HKD 95 8
NZD, SGD 15 1
AUD 15 N/A
CHF 11 N/A
CZK 300 N/A
DKK 30 N/A
HUF 6,000 N/A
ILS 30 N/A
JPY 1,600 N/A
NOK, SEK 50 N/A
MXN 100 N/A
PLN 40 N/A
RUB 330 N/A
ZAR 200 N/A

*Check payments are also available in USD and they carry a $4 fee.

How long does it take to withdraw money from Interactive Brokers? We tested it and it took 2 business days. While you wait, a new feature since early 2020 lets you track your withdrawal in real-time on the Client Portal.

How do you withdraw money from Interactive Brokers?

  • First, log into the Client Portal then click on ‘Transfer & Pay’ and ‘Transfer funds.’
  • Select the account you want to use for the transaction.
  • At the top of the page, click on the ‘Withdraw Funds’ tab.
  • Select the currency of your withdrawal, then the withdrawal method.
  • Fill out the required information.
  • Submit your withdrawal request.
  • You can see the status of your request in ‘View Transaction History.’

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Interactive Brokers review
Web trading platform

Interactive Brokers’s web platform is simple and easy to use even for beginners. On the negative side, it is not customizable.

Pros Cons
• User-friendly • Limited customizability (for charts, workspace)
• Clear fee report
• Two-step (safer) login
Interactive Brokers platforms to choose from
Trading platform Score Available
Web 4.3 / 5 stars Yes
Mobile 3.5 / 5 stars Yes
Desktop 3.0 / 5 stars Yes

When you trade online at IB, you can choose between two web platforms: the Client Portal and Webtrader. In this review, we tested the Client Portal since it is more user-friendly and easier to use than Webtrader. For IBKR Lite users, only the Client Portal is available.

The Client Portal is available in multiple languages: Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Russian, Simplified Chinese, Slovakian, Spanish, Traditional Chinese.

Look and feel

The Client Portal platform is particularly user-friendly and intuitive. You will easily find every feature even if you have just started trading. On the negative side, it is not customizable at all.

Login and security

Interactive Brokers provides several options for safe logins:

  1. You can use two-step authentication through SMS messaging.
  2. IB Key is a two-step authentication feature available through IBKR Mobile.
  3. A bit old-fashioned way is the Secure Login System, where you get a plastic code card.

Search functions

The search function is easy-to-use and works better than on the desktop platform.

All you have to do is type in the preferred asset’s name, and you can see a list of exchanges and products. The search bar can be found in the upper right corner.

Placing orders

Client Portal offers many order types. If you prefer more sophisticated orders, you should use the desktop trading platform. Available order types are:

  • Limit
  • Market
  • Stop
  • Stop Limit
  • Limit-on-Close
  • Market-on-Close
  • Trailing Stop
  • Trailing Stop Limit

If you are not familiar with the basic order types, read this overview.

You can also use a lot of order time limits:

  • Day
  • Good-til-Canceled (GTC)
  • Immediate or Cancel
  • Market-on-Open
  • Limit-on-Open

Alerts and notifications

You can set alerts and notifications, but only through the built-in chat. We think that it would be better if users could set alarms when they set up their order.

Portfolio and fee reports

Portfolio and fee reports are transparent. The portfolio tab gives a clear overview of your performance, including historical profit/loss balance and the fees you paid.

Interactive Brokers review
Mobile trading platform

The Interactive Brokers mobile trading platform has a lot of functions and a useful chatbot, but its user interface could be better.

Pros Cons
• Two-step (safer) login • User interface is a bit complex
• Good search function
• Good variety of order types

IBKR Mobile, Interactive Brokers’s mobile trading platform, is available both for iOS and Android. In this review, we tested it on Android.

The number of available languages is almost the same as at the web trading platform, only Slovakian is not supported.

Look and feel

The mobile trading app is handier compared to the web platform. On the other hand, its overall look and user-friendliness lags behind the competitors’ mobile platforms.

Login and security

You can use a two-step login, which is safer than a simple login. Furthermore, if your device has a fingerprint sensor, you can also use biometric authentication for convenience.

Search functions

The search function works well, just like at the web trading platform. You can access the search button easily from any menu.

When you type in the asset you are looking for, the app lists all asset types. For example, if you search for Apple, you can choose between Apple stock, futures, options, warrants, as well as CFDs.

After you have chosen the product are you interested in, you will be greeted by an information and trading window, which shows:

  • Asset market information
  • An interactive chart with technical indicators
  • Related news
  • Some fundamental data
  • Summary of the latest analyst report
  • The buy and sell buttons that transfer you to the order panel.

Placing orders

IBKR Mobile has the same order types as the web trading platform.

Alerts

You can set alerts only via the chatbot, which is not the most intuitive method.

Special feature – Chatbot

The most innovative and exciting function within the app is the chatbot, call IBot. You can use the chatbot to execute or close an order, or to get basic info quickly.

The chatbot understands basic commands, such as “apple price” or “buy 1 apple share.” On top of this, you can also search for company fundamentals, like dividend yields or PE ratios. Some of the functions, like displaying a chart, are also available via the chatbot.

Interactive Brokers review
Desktop trading platform

Interactive Brokers provides a desktop platform for IBKR PRO accounts with many customizable options and advanced execution functions. However, the platform is not user-friendly and is more suited for advanced traders.

Pros Cons
• Clear fee report • Not user-friendly
• Good customizability (for charts, workspace) • Poor search function
• Good variety of order types • Too complex for beginners

Interactive Brokers’s desktop platform Trader Workstation (TWS) is so advanced that even a separate review would not be able to cover all of its features. Nevertheless, we tried to provide you with a comprehensive summary of TWS.

In the desktop trading platform, you have literally every feature you could desire. Whether you were dreaming of replicating your favorite ETF or trading with chatbots – with Interactive Brokers, you can do them both.

The desktop trading platform is available in multiple languages, but fewer than the web trading platform. For example, Dutch and Slovakian are missing.

Look and feel

To be honest, this is by far the most complex platform that we at Brokerchooser have ever reviewed. This platform is ideal for you if you consider yourself a professional user. If you are a beginner or someone who seeks long-term investments, you may have difficulty navigating all of TWS’s features.

Despite its complexity the platform is highly customizable, for example, you can set up your own templates.

Login and security

It has the same security features as the web trading platform. You can turn on two-step authentication, which makes the platform safer to use.

Search functions

The search function is the platform’s weakest feature. Search results are not structured and it is quite difficult to filter out the product you are looking for.

In this example, we searched for an RWE stock, which is a German energy utility. However, when we typed in “rwe,” all the structured and derivative products were listed in the results as well, which made it harder to find the real stock.

Using the chatbot is great substitute solution. When you search for RWE directly through this feature, it will direct you to the stock listed on the main stock exchange.

Placing orders

Trading through TWS, IKBR PRO offers many different order types.

Order types at Interactive Brokers

Limit Mid Price Market Market-to-Limit
Stop Stop-Limit Trail Trail-Limit
Relative Retail Price Improvement Snap Market Snap To Midpoint
Snap to Primary Market-on-Close Limit-on-Close IBALGO
Hedge (with Forex, or Pair Stock)

On its desktop platform, Interactive Brokers provides Smart Routing, a great feature that detects the best possible route (e.g. exchange) for your trades automatically. TD Ameritrade also has a similar service.

If you are not familiar with the basic order types, read this overview.

The order term options also include some special types beyond the usual ones:

  • Good ’till Canceled (GTC)
  • Good-Til-Date (GTD)
  • Market-on-open (MOO)
  • Limit-on-open (LOO)
  • Immediate-or-cancel (IOC)
  • Fill-or-Kill (FOK)
  • Day ‘Til canceled (DTC)

Alerts and notifications

Alerts and notifications can be set in the ‘Configuration panel.’ You can select email, SMS, or mobile pop-up notifications.

You can also set additional alerts, for example for price changes, daily profits or losses, executed trades, etc.

Reports on the Interactive Brokers desktop platform are really transparent, just like on the web platform.

Interactive Brokers review
Markets and products

Through Interactive Brokers you can access an extremely wide range of markets, with every product type available.

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
Stock Yes Yes Yes
ETF Yes Yes Yes
Forex Yes Yes No
Fund Yes Yes Yes
Bond Yes Yes Yes
Options Yes Yes Yes
Futures Yes Yes Yes
CFD Yes Yes Yes
Crypto Yes Yes Yes

Interactive Brokers has a great selection of products, with an exceptional range of ETFs and bonds. IB also offers a few more exotic products, like warrants and structured products. It only lags behind its competitors in terms of its FX pair and CFD selection.

Regarding accessible stock exchanges, the Israeli Tel Aviv Stock Exchange has been added for ETF and stock trading. Since we last checked, IB provides access to almost 140 exchanges worldwide, with alternative services as well, such as Interactive Advisors. This is an asset management service, a mix of robo advisory and social trading.

Stocks and ETFs

Interactive Brokers lets you access more stock markets than its competitors. This includes major stock markets like the NASDAQ, the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) or the London Stock Exchange (LSE), but also minor ones such as the Warsaw Stock Exchange in Poland or the Mexican markets. Other than regular stocks, penny stocks are also available.

Besides stocks, you can also trade with more than 13,000 ETFs at IB. This is much less than it was in early 2020, but it is still the most extensive selection among competitors.

Stocks and ETFs

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
Stock markets (#) 78 36 30
ETFs (#) 13,000 3,100 5,400

Since December 2020, fractional shares are available at Interactive Brokers for individual accounts on all trading platforms. This means you can trade with only a portion of a share which is a great feature if you want to cut share costs.

Forex

Interactive Brokers provides a vast selection of more than 100 currency pairs; only Saxo Bank has more.

Currency pairs

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
Currency pairs (#) 105 182

Funds

Through IB, you have access to more than 250 fund providers including big market names like Blackrock and Vanguard. Only Swissquote offers more fund providers than Interactive Brokers.

Fund providers

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
Fund providers (#) 257 17 68

Bonds

Interactive Brokers gives you access to a massive number of bonds. Out of all government and corporate bonds available at IB, 1.4 million are so-called municipal bonds: these are fixed income investments issued by local US governments, cities, states or counties, but they are tradable only for US residents. The table below does not include municipal bonds in the overall number of bonds product, but even so the number of bonds available is still higher than at competitor brokers.

Bonds

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
Bonds (#) 72,900 38,000 870

Options

As with other product types, Interactive Brokers has an extremely wide range of options markets. You can access the biggest options markets, like the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) or the CME Group, as well as smaller markets, such as the Korea Stock Exchange (KSE) or the Mexican Derivatives Exchange (MEXDER).

Options markets

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
Options markets (#) 33 5 13

Futures

Interactive Brokers offers an extensive selection of futures products and markets. There are now 32 markets available, which is more than what competitors provide. Similarly to options, you will find both major and minor markets.

Futures markets

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
Futures markets (#) 32 23 15

Disclaimer: CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 69% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Only clients who are trading through Interactive Brokers (U.K.) Limited are eligible to trade with CFDs. Compared to other products and competitors, IB offers an average range of CFDs, mainly stock and stock index CFDs.

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
Stock index CFDs (#) 13 29
Stock CFDs (#) 7,100 8,800 900
ETF CFDs (#) 675
Commodity CFDs (#) 19
Bond CFDs (#) 5
Futures CFDs (#)

Cryptos

At IB you can trade with Bitcoin and Ethereum ETNs and Bitcoin Futures:

  • Bitcoin and Ether ETNs are traded on the Stockholm Stock Exchange and the US OTC (Pink) markets
  • Bitcoin Index is available on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and on the CME Group and Chicago Board Options Exchange(CBOE)
  • Bitcoin futures are available on the CME Group and Chicago Board Options Exchange(CBOE)

If you want to know more about crypto investing, we recommend our crypto blogpost.

Interactive Brokers Saxo Bank DEGIRO
Cryptos (#) 2 2 2

Asset management service

Interactive Advisors, IB’s own asset management service, allows you to copy professional portfolio managers, letting you automatically make trades as professionals do.

You can choose from many portfolio managers to find the one that fits you best, with real-time portfolio performance available.

The minimum investment depends on the portfolio you want to invest in: the lowest investment amount starts at $5,000.

Interactive Brokers review
Research

Interactive Brokers has almost limitless research possibilities, but the user interface is overly complicated, hard to follow and not well designed.

Pros Cons
• Good interactive chart • Not user-friendly
• Trading ideas
• Data on asset fundamentals

The quality of the research available is good and you always have the freedom to choose between third-party providers.

Recommendations

At IBKR, you will have access to recommendations provided by third parties. These research tools are mostly free, but there are some you have to pay for.

Several famous news sources, like Thomson Reuters, Morningstar and Dow Jones, are available for free.

Since January 2020, Interactive Brokers incorporated two new recommendation tools called Validea and TheLeadingEdge. They provide real time analysis, in-depth reports and model portfolios for a monthly subscription. You can enable these features via your Client Portal: to do so, select Menu-Settings-User Settings and then Research Subscriptions.

Fundamental data

Interactive Brokers provides a broad selection of fundamental data on all of its platforms. These include income statements for the past six years, a dividend calendar and peer group companies, for example.

Charting

The charting features are almost endless at Interactive Brokers. There are 120 technical indicators; however, similar to the platforms, the charting tool is not user-friendly.

Other special technical tools include:

  • Stock/ETF benchmarker: helps you to benchmark your stock or portfolio versus a selected benchmark
  • Mutual fund and ETF replicator
  • Volatility lab
  • Option probability lab: a group of option analysis functions
  • VaR, Sharpe: portfolio performance analyzers

News feed

You have access to:

  • News
  • Dailysummaries
  • Multiple economiccalendars

Interactive Brokers has its own news domain called Traders’ Insight. It also provides integrated third-party news and recommendations to its desktop platform.

Upon entering the platform, you have the option to read daily summaries of the markets through the Daily Lineup. This feature helps you to be informed about the latest news and analyst recommendations. An Earnings and an Economic Calendar are also helpful quick shortcuts to start off your day.

The Economic Calendar informs you about upcoming events that will have an economic impact. The feature can be accessed separately at any time from the menu, though the design could be better. If you look for an all-around economic calendar that includes upcoming national holidays for the year 2020, find it here on IB’s page.

Interactive Brokers review
Customer service

Interactive Brokers customer service is good. They can be contacted via phone, email, live chat and an automated ‘iBot’ and provide fast and relevant answers. However, most options are not available 24/7.

Pros Cons
• Phone support • No 24/7 support
• Live chat
• Fast response time

You can contact Interactive Brokers via:

Customer service is available in several regions and languages, namely in English, Russian, Chinese, Indian and Japanese.

Regional Service Desks and hours of operation

Location Number Hours of operation (Time Zone)
United States 1 (877) 442-2757 Toll free
1 (312) 542-6901 Direct dial
14:00 (Mon – Fri) – 02:00 (Tue – Sat) (Europe/Berlin)
19:00 (Sun) – 01:00 (Mon) (Europe/Berlin)
Canada 1 (877) 745-4222 Toll free
1 (514) 847-3499 Direct dial
14:00 – 23:30 (Mon – Fri) (Europe/Berlin)
Europe 00800-42-276537 Toll free
+41-41-726-9500 Direct dial

+44 207-710-5695 Direct dial United Kingdom

09:00 – 18:00 (Mon – Fri) (Europe/Berlin)
Russia 8-800-100-8556 Toll free
+41-41-726-9506 (Russian)
08:00 – 17:00 (Mon – Fri) (Europe/Berlin)
Hong Kong +852-2156-7907 Direct dial 02:00 – 11:00 (Mon – Fri) (Europe/Berlin)
Australia +61 (2) 8093 7300 Direct dial 00:30 – 10:00 (Mon – Fri) (Europe/Berlin)
India +91 22 61289888 Direct dial
+91 22 39696188 Direct dial
02:30 – 14:00 (Mon – Fri) (Europe/Berlin)
China +86 (21) 6086 8586 Direct dial 03:00 – 12:00 (Mon – Fri) (Europe/Berlin)
Japan +81 (3) 4588 9700 Direct dial
+81 (3) 4588 9710 Direct dial (English)
01:30 – 10:30 (Mon – Fri) (Europe/Berlin)

We had lots of problems with customer service when we tested it in 2020, with long wait times one of them. On one occasion, we sent an inquiry in English and received an answer email only after four days – in Russian.

In 2020 we tested the chat, email and phone support, three times. Since 2020, the Interactive Brokers customer service improved a lot, we did not encounter any major problems. Email responses arrived within a day. The wait time for a representative in a live chatroom was rather long (e.g. more than three minutes), but after they came online, the experience was smooth with relevant answers.

The waiting time for a phone call was around one minute.

Also, since we last checked, the Inquiry Response Center got a facelift: now known as Message Center, it has improved a lot in design. We liked the modern look of the interface.

Despite all of the above, the lack of 24/7 availability is still a problem.

Interactive Brokers review
Education

Interactive Brokers offers a wide range of quality educational materials and tools, including videos, courses, webinars, a glossary, and even a demo account.

Pros Cons
• Demo account • Courses only available after registration
• Trading platform tutorial
• Educational videos

At Interactive Brokers you can learn in the following ways:

  • Paper (demo) account
  • Online courses
  • Webinars
  • Educational videos
  • Platform tutorial videos
  • Glossary
  • News

Once you set up a trading account, you can also open a Paper Trading Account. This is a demo account: all paper accounts start with $1,000,000 in virtual money, which you can use to experiment with IB’s platforms and trading services. Similar to this is IBKR Mobile’s Read-only mode, which lets you check out the mobile interface, although you won’t be able to make any trades. In summary, we think these are great services, and the best way to learn how a trading platform works.

In addition to the above services, you can choose from multiple courses based on your trading skills. There is also a glossary that helps you to understand technical terms, unfamiliar expressions and acronyms.

Interactive Brokers review
Safety

Interactive Brokers is regulated by several financial authorities, including top-tier ones like the SEC in the US and the UK’s FCA. Its parent company is listed on the Nasdaq Exchange.

Pros Cons
• Listed on stock exchange None
• Negative balance protection
• Regulated by top-tier financial authorities

Is Interactive Brokers regulated?

Yes, it is regulated by multiple top-tier financial authorities, like the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

Is Interactive Brokers safe?

To be certain, we highly advise that you check two facts: how you are protected if something goes wrong and what the background of the broker is.

How you are protected

Not all investments are protected by SIPC. In general, SIPC covers notes, stocks, bonds, mutual funds and other investment company shares, and other registered securities. It does not cover instruments such as unregistered investment contracts, unregistered limited partnerships, fixed annuity contracts, currency, and interests in gold, silver, or other commodity futures contracts or commodity options.

Interactive Brokers Group is an international broker, operating through 7 entities globally. This matters for you because Interactive Brokers provides negative balance protection, and the investor protection amount and the regulating authority differ from entity to entity.

Interactive Brokers provides negative balance protection for forex spot and CFD trading, but only for retail clients from the European Union. Professional and non-EU clients are not covered with any negative balance protection

Interactive Brokers legal entities

Covered by the Canadian Investor Protection Fund (CIPF), regulated by the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC)

Country of clients Protection amount Regulator Legal entity
European countries* £85,000 Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) Interactive Brokers (U.K.) Limited
USA $500,000 ($250,000 cash limit) Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Interactive Brokers LLC
Canada $1,000,000 Interactive Brokers Canada Inc.
Australia No protection Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) Interactive Brokers Australia PTY LTD
India No protection Securities and Exchange Board of India (BSE) Interactive Brokers (India) PVT. LTD.
Japan No protection Financial Services Agency (FSA) Interactive Brokers Securities Japan Inc.
Hong Kong No protection Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission Interactive Brokers Hong Kong Limited

*If you are from Europe, the picture is a bit more complicated. The regulator and the protection amount also depends on what you are trading with:

  • If you trade with forex, CFDs, non-US stock index options or futures, you are protected by the FCA, up to £85,000.
  • If you trade with stocks, bonds, funds or US stock index options, you are protected by the US investor protection, i.e. $500,000, with a cash limit of $250,000.

As you can see, the details are not very transparent. Our best advice is to ask customer service from time to time about the protection amount of your actual portfolio.

Background

Interactive Brokers is based in the USA and was founded in 1978. During the last more than 40 years, despite multiple economic crises, IB managed to stay on top on the brokerage market, which is a good sign for the broker’s safety.

Interactive Brokers Group (the holding company of the different entities) is listed on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange. The listing makes the broker more transparent, as it has to publish financial statements regularly.

Being listed on the Nasdaq and regulated by both the UK’s FCA and the US SEC are all great signs for Interactive Brokers’s safety.

Interactive Brokers review
Bottom line

Interactive Brokers is one of the biggest US-based discount brokers, regulated by several top-tier regulators globally. We recommend this broker for advanced traders.

On the plus side, IB has a vast range of markets and products available, with diverse research tools and low costs.

There are some drawbacks though: there is a high inactivity fee and the account opening process is complicated. The desktop platform is complex and hard-to-understand, especially for beginners.

If you have experience navigating complex platforms and you like transparent low-cost trading, Interactive Brokers could be a great fit for you.

Real Forex brokers reviews

To conduct successful trading, you need to find a reliable intermediary. Forex brokers reviews from other traders will help you successfully cope with this task. It is important to emphasize that real people publish them. Thanks to this, you get the accurate “first hand” information about the brokers you are interested in. Successful traders recommend first reading them and only then starting to work. Comfortable search engine allows to quickly find Forex brokers reviews at any convenient time.

What broker you want to write a review about?

Advantages: copytrading, low spreads, polite stuff, free webinars with interesting guest speakers

Disadvantages: the ranking system for copytrading favors daytraders

Comment: I think investing trading strategies could be very interesting for some traders. But if you don’t trade avtively, the system will not give you extra points even if you trade well.

Comment: Any form of loss of money while investing in stocks, forex, binary option or crypto is a painful thing most especially when you had high hopes on such an investment. I personally lost 72k€ over a year of investing in binary option and forex. Luckily for me I found it was all a scam and I fought to get my money back, after a few months someone introduced me to dimitru (at)ivtcysec-recovery,,tech. He is someone with the right skills to help us in such situations. Im ever happy to share my experience as I promised.

Comment: request for my money back from plusoption and thats where i realized its all a scam and they have been manipulating me and my account. Now how do i get my money back? ill just say i got lucky coming in contact with someone who helped me get most of my money back. so now i have made up my mind not to try any of these

Advantages: Good trading platform

Disadvantages: Withdrawal problem

Comment: In my 3 years of trading with HotForex, I rarely encounter any problem with the actual trading. Their execution is fast, and their trading platform (MT4) is very nice. But recently I had a nightmare withdrawing $500 from my account. My withdrawal request never got through. The system said it’s being processed but it ended up going to my account over and over again. I’m still in contact with their support but they give me contradicting messages every day. Kinda feeling hopeless now I might search for another broker to trade with.

Advantages: Competitive trading conditions Superb trading terminal and support team

Comment: Deciding to trade with Libertex was the best decision because it made me believe in trading again. With all the scams surrounding Forex trading due to fraudulent brokers, I nearly lost hope. I’m happy with this broker because it’s regulated and provides competitive trading conditions. My previous broker was a complete fraud – slippage, requotes, stop loss not being hit, and a trading terminal constantly slowing down. With Libertex, everything works smoothly. Lots of instruments to trade, fast withdrawal process, competent account managers, and superb support service team.

Advantages: Good support, tight spreads.

Comment: I dont really write reviews but AAFX Trading deserves a pat on the back. This broker is my second broker which was recommended by my brother. What I like most about AAFX is they got a very effective support system. One time my account was hacked, I turned to their support team which gave me a response within an hour. They froze my account until I had proven that it’s really my account. I got it back the next day. Another thing I like is the tight spreads. Yes, it can go really high especially during news releases but under normal conditions, spreads are really tight.

Comment: All these binary options, trading and cryptocurrency companies are scams, I lost a huge amount of money. Things have turned out good for me, being that I was able to recover my money thanks to a recovery pro. You can reach me if you’re interested in finding out how I recovered everything I lost. Rachelmillr4 gmai,l dt com

Advantages: Fast withdrawal, copy-trading opportunity

Disadvantages: Haven’t noticed yet.

Comment: I can’t say there’s any fabulous conditions here, everything’s standard. But as I mentioned above, everything works fine, I can freely use the capital and leverage to multiply it myself or difersify the risks by investing a part of the capital in copy-trading.This is my freedom and my ability to achieve my goals.

Advantages: Great mobile app.

Disadvantages: Lost it on a big leverage.

Comment: I trade only from my phone, so I am primarily interested in the mobile application. In aafx it was made as qualitative as possible, everything flies, there are no limits on the number and volume of orders.

Advantages: Warnings on investment

Disadvantages: No disadvantage

Comment: Warning to everyone with the plan of investing in any online investments schemes .There are certain limitations to investing in these schemes and also difficulties getting it tripled after a long while since 60% of these online investments schemes are scammers . I got involved with a company called “CryptoNXT” trading cryptocurrency but before I engaged with them, I mentioned to my account manager(Ross Malone) assigned to me by CryptoNXT, at one point about my dilemma with Click’s Dealer. He said it was absolutely a scam and he even knew some of the names of people I had dealt with. He said their web site, “Clicksdealer”, was a fraud and that my only hope was to try through Chase to get my money back Not knowing My experience with CryptoNXT Account manager Ross Malone would be a terrible experience for me. I started with an Initial sum of $300, this got me some trades winnings and a huge profit but at the end of it all, I ended up at the losing ends. I ended up losing all my hard earned savings, 180,000 USD which was meant to sustain me when I’m retired. I don’t know if I have a leg to stand on here. I am sure that somewhere along the line I agreed to Terms and Conditions which usually state that investing is a risk and there are no guarantees as to the outcome of my investments with them. Maybe that lets them off the hook. I just know I was lied to about the performance of my account every time they called asking for more money. The whole thing took a wrong turn right in my presence. I had cold foots immediately they pulled a fast one on me that i lost my funds to bad trades. I made a promise to myself to try every avenue I can to get back this money, though I think the odds are pretty slim, I saw some Good reviews of RAPIDASSETRECOVERY dotcom; A Consultancy And Recovery Firm that has helped certain victims get a refund from these Unregulated brokers. I decided to use them and all I can say is contacting them was the best decision I made all my lifetime. These scams will keep going on and on for a very long time. We can only do some good to ourselves by getting some enlightening on how to point them out. Be safe out there everyone.

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