This review highlights the best forex brokers for trading currencies. Commissions & spreads, trade platforms, execution, and overall quality are in focus.
We now have our sister site, ForexBrokers.com with in-depth FX and crypto reviews. You can read our latest Annual FX Broker Review with the 2018 ratings and rankings. Over 80,000 words of research and 6,000+ data points spanning 43 firms. This new site also contains many tools you can find here specifically catered to currency brokerages, like the ability to compare FX brokers side by side.
Best Trade Platforms
In our search for finding the best trade platform we decided to put the most emphasis on ease of use and charting capabilities. Thinkorswim's trading platform is an amazing combination between design and functionality. The platform has virtually anything you could want, including live CNBC, trade alerts, news feeds, and practically every technical indicator under the sun. This powerful functionality is then rolled into one eye friendly easy to use piece of software.
Likes: The 2016 #1 Desktop Platform, functionality allows forex trading as well as stocks, options, and commodities trading from one platform.
Dislikes: No automated Forex Trading; dealing desk execution; no Metatrader platform.
Bottome Line: thinkorswim offers one of the most powerful trading platforms in the industry. Combined with the fact they provide execution services for stocks, options, and commodities, this organization is an excellent place to have a trading account. Their plethora of ideas, services, and instruments will help develop a trading style that accommodates any need.
Ideal Client: All clients, especially those trading in other markets who want to consolidate their account to one broker.
Learn More: Read the 2018 thinkorswim FX review
Best Automated Trading
The recent increase in popularity of automated trading has led us to set out and discover which forex broker has the most to offer when it comes to automatic order placement and management. While AvaTrade offers 5 automated trading solutions, none are proprietary and none are as specialized as Interbank's Metatrader solutions.
Likes: AvaTrade has a wide variety of platforms and automated trading solutions; CFD trading offers exposure to stock and commodity markets.
Dislikes: Wide spreads create pricey trades; dealing desk environment; under developed mobile trading application.
Bottome Line: AvaTrade does a good job at creating a well rounded brokerage experience. The company offers automated trading, education, fundamental analysis, and four different trading platforms. While transactions are a bit pricey, AvaTrade's "fixed spread" environment may appeal to traders who like consistent spreads and fixed transaction costs.
Ideal Client: Non-US clients who are looking for a great all around introduction to Forex with a small account. The high spread cost makes AvaTrade unattractive to those trading with larger accounts.
Learn More: Read the 2018 AvaTrade review
“Social” is certainly one of the biggest buzzwords on the net lately and it’s gaining traction in the investment world as well. We rated the social trading ranks based on a broker’s unique tools and community applications which help traders connect, exchange information, and gain new insights. eToro sports the OpenBook social trading site. The easiest way to describe it is to call it the Facebook of forex trading. The interface is similar, focus is centered around a news feed, the traders you follow are grouped together like friends and you can comment and discuss trades as they appear on the fly.
Likes: Interactive trading environment with trading competitions for both live account and demo account traders, including valuable prizes and awards. Active social investment network.
Dislikes: eToro is not available for US based traders interested in trading with eToro.
Bottome Line: eToro caters to new traders looking for an exciting and interactive trading experience without a large initial investment. They may not have the tightest spreads, but accounts can be opened for as little as 200 dollars which makes them a good candidate for practice trading with small amounts of real money.
Ideal Client: Clients with little or no forex experience, and clients looking to explore the social trading networks with a non-serious investment.
Learn More: Read the 2018 eToro review
Active/Professional Forex Trading
If you are doing serious currency trading you should consider Interactive Brokers. Well known in the stock and options industry as an active trading broker, they have a $10,000 USD minimum to open an account and are not for the faint of heart.
Likes: Tight spreads and low commission structures help minimize trade costs; "IB Marketplace" brings programmers & end users of API solutions together; 3rd party products available to sync with default platform.
Dislikes: $10K minimum opening deposit; platform navigation takes some getting used to.
Bottome Line: While some attributes of Interactive Brokers maybe considered hurdles (minimum deposit & default platform), this broker is able to provide opportunities that are unavailable anywhere else. Their combination of endless trade instruments, algorithmic trading, and platform "plug ins" creates a very customized and professional trading atmosphere.
Ideal Client: Professional level traders, both technical and fundamental.
Learn More: Read the 2018 Interactive Brokers review
Cheapest FX Trading
When choosing an online forex broker for cheap trading, commissions and spreads are the most important factors. For this review, we aggregated all the spread and commission data to determine the absolute cheapest forex brokers in the industry. MB Trading wins the frudal battle for several reasons. For one, their commission rate of $2.95/100k ($5.90 round trip) is one of the lowest rates among FX Brokers. Not to mention they offer it along side super tight spreads to everyone, regardless of account size. If that wasn’t enough they are now paying their clients 2.50 per 100k for placing limit orders.
Likes: Largest selection of currency pairs, and competitive spreads for all account types with further discounts available for active traders. Wide range of over 10,000 tradeable instruments offered. Regulated in multiple top-tier jurisdictions and publicly traded in the UK.
Dislikes: Web platform is Flash-based. Doesn’t offer MT4 platform so no support for automated trading.
Bottome Line: CMC Markets offers competitive spreads and access to a wide range of forex pairs and global markets through its regulated entities in major jurisdictions worldwide. It’s Next Generation platform scored highly during our 2017 annual review and the broker placed in the top five (Best in Class) in multiple categories including Overall and Research.
Ideal Client: Self-directed retail and professional forex traders.
Learn More: Read the 2018 CMC Markets review
If you are looking for more forex broker reviews, please visit ForexBrokers.com. We have over twenty reviews and counting!
You can also read our original 2011 Forex Broker Review that was published on Futures Magazine.