Forex.com Review

Review

Forex.com has served its clients since 2001. Per the 2019 monthly Retail Forex Obligation report, as published by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), it is the number one Forex broker in the US, as measured by total client assets. Forex.com is owned by GAIN Capital Group LLC, which is part of the StoneX Group, a Fortune 100 company with almost 100 years of operating experience. While Forex.com offers less than 100 total assets, it maintains a competitive commission-based cost structure, while the commission-free alternative grants traders an average spread environment. Forex.com features a proprietary trading platform alongside the MT4 platform. As the name suggests, it is primarily a Forex broker, where it serves its limited asset selection from a well-regulated environment.

Forex.com Review landing page

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Regulation and Security

Forex.com maintains registration as a Futures Commission Merchant (FCM) and Retail Foreign Exchange Dealer (RFED) with the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). It is also a member of the National Futures Association (NFA). It is fully compliant with both and maintains capital in excess of the stipulated requirements, a testament to this broker's financial strength. That strength is enhanced by excellent corporate ownership; the Risk Committee of StoneX sets bank review and monitoring guidelines, which are followed to the letter by Forex.com. Client deposits remain fully segregated across a global network of custodian banks, which were not named. From a regulatory perspective, this broker presents traders with a trustworthy environment.

The CFTC regulates Forex.com, which is also a member of the NFA.

Forex.com Review regulatory framework

Segregation of client deposits and oversight by its corporate owner, StoneX, ensure capital safety.

Forex.com Review parent company oversight

Forex.com maintains excess capital reserves as part of its internal risk management strategy.

Forex.com Review excess capital reserves

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Fees

Spreads and commissions comprise the fee structure at Forex.com. The commission-free account carries moderately elevated costs with a starting spread of 1.0 pips. A more competitive alternative is the commission-based option where spreads commence from 0.2 pips for a $5 charge per 100K traded. Leveraged overnight positions incur swap charges, and third-party deposit and withdrawal costs may apply. Forex.com notes a monthly data fee for inactive accounts without specifying the exact amount. The overall pricing environment remains minimal and competitive.

MT4 traders can easily access swap rates from their platform by following these steps:

1. Right-click on the desired symbol in the Market Watch window and select Symbols.

2. Select the desired currency and then click on Properties located on the right side.

3. Scroll down until you see Swap Long and Swap Short.

Traders have access to a sound pricing environment.

Forex.com Review pricing environment

Forex.com Spreads

Spreads, the broker mark-up on raw market prices, represent the most significant trading cost for clients and the most lucrative income stream for brokers. Forex.com provides three account types with various minimum Forex.com spreads. The Standard account shows an average mark-up of 1.5 pips for the EUR/USD and 1.4 pips for the USD/JPY. While no trading commissions apply, the costs equal $15 and $14 per 1.0 standard lot, respectively. It remains excessive and makes Forex.com one of the most expensive Forex brokers globally. Competitive international counterparts provide clients with commission-free spreads of 0.6 pips or $6 per round lot. The Commission account provides traders with minimum mark-ups of 0.2 pips, while the average one for the EUR/USD and USD/JPY average closer to 0.5 pips. A commission of $5 per 100,000 currency units or 1.0 standard lots also exists. It appears that the commission applies with each transaction, resulting in a cost of $10 per round lot. Together with the average spread of 0.5 pips, it results in a trading fee of $15 for the EUR/USD per 1.0 standard lot, mirroring the cost structure in the Standard account.

The most significant difference between the Standard and the Commission account is that the letter qualifies for a volume-based rebate program of up to $0.90 per lot. The Forex.com spreads in the STP Pro account offer clients the best cost structure. They often remain below 0.5 pips for major currency pairs. The minimum commission is $80 per $1,000,000 traded or approximately $8 per round lot. It totals $11 per round lot for the EUR/USD, together with an average spread of 0.3 pips. Active traders can lower it to $6 per round lot, but the requirement is $1 billion in monthly trading volume, equal to 10,000 lots. Overall, Forex.com spreads remain excessive.

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What Can I Trade

Forex.com is primarily a Forex broker and maintains 82 currency pairs. While this represents adequate coverage, more in-depth exposure to its core market is missing. Unleveraged gold and silver are the only commodities available for trading. Via its affiliate, FuturesOnline, traders may also trade five futures products. The total of 89 assets represents a distinct disadvantage, however, particularly considering the ownership of StoneX. Pure Forex traders may draw the conclusion that market coverage is sufficient, though the absence of proper cross-asset diversification will surely limit its client base.

The complete asset list counts just 89, with 82 currency pairs comprising the bulk of it.

Forex.com Review asset list

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Account Types

Traders may choose between the Standard account, the Commission account, and the STP Pro Account. The former is commission-free, and the only one where MT4 is available. The latter two are commission-based on the proprietary trading platform. Forex.com recommends a minimum account balance of $2,500, except for the STP Pro Account, where it is $25,000, but the minimum deposit is $100, with $500 required to open an account. Various sections of the website have conflicting information regarding recommended deposits, resembling a disorganized presentation. Maximum leverage is 1:50 for majors and 1:20 for minors, notably less than what well-established international brokers offer. The Commission account pays 1.5% annually on the available margin.

Forex.com offers three account types.

Forex.com Review account types

The Compare Accounts section notes a recommended balance of $1,000.

Forex.com Review account comparison

The Forex Trading Platform Comparison and FAQ sections list the same value as $2,500.

Forex.com Review platform comparison

Forex.com Leverage

Forex.com provides clients with leveraged trading on all account types, but the maximum is capped at 1:50 for the most liquid currency pairs, while less liquid ones remain limited to 1:20. Therefore, clients at Forex.com have access to significantly less leverage, once compared to well-established and trustworthy international brokers who provide up to 1:500. The reason Forex.com is unable to provide a more competitive trading environment is due to its regulators. Its corporate owner, StoneX, remains a US-listed company with a questionable past, including over a dozen violations and multi-million US Dollars in fines. Its recent acquisition of Gain Capital, which owns Forex.com, also gave it ownership of City Index, where many international traders have access to a more competitive trading environment. Leverage remains highly misunderstood and confused with increased risk. Brokers use this misconception to justify and defend their lack of competitiveness. It does not result in elevated risk, but the absence of sound risk management does. Many brokers, Forex.com included, fail to describe this relationship. They associate risk with leverage, mirroring the misleading message of their regulators.

Leverage does impact the amounts of pips a trader can afford to be wrong before a stop loss should close the trade. Traders must understand that using leveraged accounts requires an understanding of how it impacts price action. It does not raise risk levels, and the importance of risk management and how to deploy it remains vital before using leveraged trading accounts. For example, if a trader opts to risk 3% of assets on any trade, applied leverage does not change that. A $10,000 portfolio, leveraged 1:1 or 1:1000, will result in a maximum loss of $300 using 3% as an example. Forex.com also deploys step margin levels, lowering the total Forex.com leverage with an increase in position size.

Forex.com Minimum Deposit

The Forex.com minimum deposit is $100, an average size compared to all online brokers. Despite the acceptable requirement, Forex.com recommends a minimum deposit of $2,500 in two answers of its FAQ section. Another part of the website lists Compare Accounts, where the recommended minimum deposit is $1,000. The conflicting messages show a lack of professionalism and attention to detail. The Forex.com minimum deposit for the STP Pro account is $25,000, but traders get access to just 60 currency pairs versus 82 Standard and Commission alternatives. There is no explanation in regards to the decreased asset count. Traders who wish to use the MT4 trading platform must opt for the Standard account, the only one that supports automated trading. Minimum deposit requirements remain a hotly debated topic and follow the leverage discussion with misconceptions and false information. Clients who believe that making one deposit suffices to manage a trading portfolio are closer to gambling in financial markets and far off from trading. It remains widespread among retail traders, and brokers fail to educate them on the topic.

Traders should never deposit more capital than they can afford and are willing to lose. With that in mind, the Forex.com minimum deposit of $100 offers most retail traders in developed markets, the primary target group of Forex.com, to deploy a deposit strategy to grow their portfolios. The Forex.com minimum deposit recommendation of $2,500 represents an excellent initial deposit, but only if traders follow through with smaller monthly follow-on deposits until the portfolio reaches the necessary size to deliver the desired annualized trading results with acceptable risk. Successful traders may spend up to a decade building their portfolio before considering withdrawals. The Forex.com minimum deposit, while not as low as other brokers, offers enough flexibility to deploy a suitable deposit strategy.

Forex.com Lot Size

Another vital trading and risk management tool is the minimum lot size. The default at most brokers, including Forex.com, is 0.01 standard lots. It equals 1,000 currency units and results in a pip value of $0.10 in a US Dollar-denominated portfolio when trading currency pairs with the US Dollar as the quote currency, for example, the EUR/USD. The Forex.com lot size of 0.01 lots applies in the Standard and Commission accounts only, while the STP Pro version requires a minimum transaction size of 100,000, which is 1.0 standard lots. Therefore, each pip is worth $10 using the same parameters as above. A 100 pips move results in a $1,000 profit or loss in the STP Pro account, where the recommended minimum account balance is $25,000. It combines for a high-risk portfolio, while a more appropriate size is $100,000. The Forex.com lot size remains excessive and deprives traders of flexibility and proper risk management. Given the other reductions in the STP account, it makes it one to avoid. Forex.com does not provide active traders with a competitive product and services portfolio.

The Forex.com lot size of 0.01 for the Standard and Commission accounts follows well-established industry standards. A 100 pips move results in a profit or loss of $10. Therefore, a minimum account balance of $1,000, as listed in the Compare Accounts section of the Forex.com website, suffices but will limit the number of open positions if traders follow risk management protocols. Using the recommended minimum of $2,500 noted in the FAQ section will provide traders with the appropriate mix of flexibility and open positions while ensuring downside protection with sound risk management. One of the most significant mistakes by new traders is using underfunded, leveraged accounts with high trading volumes and the lack of risk management protocols.

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Trading Platforms

The confusion regarding the recommended minimum deposit extends to the trading platforms. Forex.com offers MT4, together with its proprietary trading platform. The Platform Comparison additionally notes GAIN GTX Direct as an alternative, but only for clients who meet the Eligible Contract Participants (ECPs) criteria, as defined in the US Commodity Exchange Act. Retail traders are, therefore, limited to MT4 and the proprietary platform, available as a desktop client, webtrader, or mobile version.

Unfortunately, MT4 is available only to Standard account holders. Forex.com provides an upgrade-suite which consists of 20 expert advisors (EAs) and custom indicators, via a partnership with FX Blue. Per its introduction, Autochartist also appears available. With full support for automated trading solutions and social trading, together with over 15,000 upgrades and third-party add-ons, this trading platform remains the superior choice.

The Forex.com desktop version comes packed with features, including integrated trading strategies, trading signals, and market analysis. Traders without the need or desire for the MT4 infrastructure and its countless possibilities may consider it worthwhile. Forex.com advertises it as their most sophisticated trading features for active currency traders who are looking for an edge. Another alternative is the fast and reliable webtrader, labeled Web Trading, which includes charts from TradingView. The REST API supports external automated trading solutions, while Forex.com also offers the independent US-based NinjaTrader.

MT4 remains a superior choice but is granted only to commission-free Standard accounts.

Forex.com Review MT4 platform

Via a partnership with FX Blue, 20 MT4 upgrades enhance the trading experience.

Forex.com Review FX Blue info

Forex.com advertises its desktop trader as the most sophisticated solution.

Forex.com Review desktop trader

A webtrader is equally available.

Forex.com Review webtrader

Traders who fulfill the Eligible Contract Participants (ECPs) criteria may manage portfolios with the GAIN GTX Direct platform.

Forex.com Review GAIN GTX platform

External automated trading solutions can connect via the REST API.

Forex.com Review REST API

The NinjaTrader independent trading platform completes the extensive trading platform selection.

Forex.com review ninja trader

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Unique Features

Free VPS hosting for MT4 EAs exists, but only for accounts with a monthly turnover which exceeds $500,000. Otherwise, Forex.com deducts a monthly fee of 30 currency units of the account base currency. Unfortunately, only Standard account holders have MT4 as an option. Worth noting is the excellent execution infrastructure at this broker, where 57.44% limit orders average a 1.02 pips improvement over the requested level.

Forex.com offers free VPS hosting for Standard accounts that exceed $500,000 in monthly turnover.

Forex.com Review expert advisor hosting

One of the prime assets at Forex.com is the order execution infrastructure.

Forex.com Review order execution infrastructure

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Research and Education

A four-person team led by Matt Weller generates in-house research, published under the Trading News and Research section of the website. The articles, which consist of written content and charts, are well-presented and of good quality. A filter located in the top left corner allows traders to quickly identify topics of interest. A Pivot Points calculator and economic calendar are equally available, while traders may additionally receive customized assistance from one of the Forex.com market strategists.

Matt Weller leads the four-member global research team at Forex.com.

Forex.com Review research team

Regularly updated quality research and market commentary are available.

Forex.com Review research and market commentary

An individualized trading plan can be created with assistance from a Forex.com market strategist.

Forex.com Review market strategist

Education consists of seven themes and three trading courses. New traders have access to an in-depth and well-thought-through program. The Beginner Course features 30 topics, followed by 43 in the Intermediate course, and completed with 17 in the Advanced course. Lessons are a combination of written content, videos, and images, and are well explained with examples. Taken together, they provide all clients, at all trading levels, with exceptional educational value. Forex.com delivers a genuine service to ensure new traders can broaden their knowledge-base before trading live accounts. Webinars add still more value, while a glossary explains basic terminology. The overall educational section is outstanding.

Forex.com features seven educational themes.

Forex.com Review educational themes

Thirty topics in the Beginner course grant a sound introduction to core topics.

Forex.com Review beginner course

Forty-three lessons in the Intermediate course represent excellent value.

Forex.com Review intermediate course

Seventeen Advanced courses explore more complex topics.

Forex.com Review advanced course

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Customer Support

Customer support is available from Sunday 10 am to Friday at 5 pm ET. The most convenient form of contact is live chat, but a web form grants an additional option. The FAQ section attempts to answer the most common questions. Forex.com is a well-managed brokerage, and most traders are unlikely to require any assistance. In case of unforeseen events, it is easily accessible.

Customer Support is readily available via various channels.

Forex.com Review customer support

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Bonuses and Promotions

Forex.com hosts an Active Trader cash rebate promotion, granted to all traders who either deposit $10,000 or who trade more than $25,000,000 in volume per month. It consists of five levels, offering savings on commissions of up to 18% or $9 per 1,000,0000 in trading volume. Within ten business days of the following month, Forex.com credits the earned rebates to accounts.

Forex.com offers bonuses and rebates which are level dependent.

Forex.com Review bonuses and promotions

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Opening an Account

A four-step online application processes new account applications, and Forex.com notes a five minute completion time. Traders will need their social security number and name of their employer, if applicable. The application gathers personal information and trading experience. Account verification is mandatory, and is usually satisfied by sending a copy of the trader’s ID and one proof of residency document.

The Account Opening process is standard.

Forex.com Review account opening procedure

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Deposits and Withdrawals

Deposit and withdrawal options are limited to bank transfers (as recommended by Forex.com), debit cards, bank wires, and checks. Processing times range between between instant and ten business days, and the minimum amount is $100. Depending on the payment option, limits between $10,000 and $50,000 exists, except for bank wires. According to AML stipulations, the name of the account holder and payment processor must be identical. The absence of more modern and intuitive payment options is regrettable, an area for Forex.com to improve.

Forex.com has limited deposit options.

Forex.com Review deposit options

Minimum and maximum withdrawal amounts exist but are suitable for all traders.

Forex.com Review withdrawal options

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General Information

Company Information

  • Broker's Name : Forex.com
  • Headquarter : United States
  • Regulation : CFTC

Account Information

  • Type of Broker : 35,38
  • U.S. Clients Allowed :
  • Minimum Deposit : $500 to open an account, $100 afterwards
  • Maximum Leverage : 1:50
  • Commissions / Spreads : Both
  • Account 1 : Standard
  • Account 2 : Commission
  • Account 3 : STP Pro
  • Demo Account :
  • Islamic Account :
  • Segregated Account :
  • Managed Accounts :
  • Deposit Options :
  • Withdrawal Options :

Instruments Traded

  • ETFs :
  • CFDs :
  • Commodities :
  • Metals :
  • Stocks :
  • Oil :
  • Gold :
  • Binary Options :
  • Indices :

Trading Platforms

  • Type of Platform : MetaTrader 4, Proprietary platform, Web-based
    • Platform Languages :
      • English
    • OS Compatibility :
      • Windows
      • Mobile
      • Web
      • iPhone
      • iPad
  • Trading Signals :
  • Charting Package :
  • Market Analysis :
  • Chart Trading :
  • Automated Trading :
  • Scalping :
  • Hedging :
  • Mobile Alerts :
  • Trailing Stops :
  • Guaranteed Stop Loss :
  • Guaranteed Limit Orders :
  • Guaranteed Execution :
  • One-click Execution :
  • Interest on Margin :
  • Web-based Trading :
  • Mobile Trading :

Customer Support

    • Website Languages :
      • English
  • Support Hours : Sunday 10 am to Friday at 5 pm ET
  • E-mail Support :
  • SMS Support :
  • Chat :

Pros and Cons

  • Extensive educational material
  • Wide choice of assets
  • Demo account
  • Only two accounts
  • No bonuses or promotions
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FAQ

Is Forex.com a good broker?

A competitive cost structure, quality research, and excellent educational section make Forex.com a genuine choice as a broker for pure Forex traders. Those seeking cross-asset diversification will need to seek another broker.

Can I trust Forex.com?

Forex.com is fully compliant with the CFTC, and its corporate owner is a publicly-traded company. Therefore, traders can fully trust this broker.

What type of broker is Forex.com?

The initial execution was a market maker model but has since evolved into ECN and STP.

What is the minimum Forex.com withdrawal?

The minimum withdrawal is $100.

What is the maximum Forex.com leverage?

Major currency pairs carry maximum leverage of 1:50.

Does Forex.com allow scalping?

While Forex.com has no restrictions on scalping, the minimum mark-up for currency pairs is 0.8 pips in the commission-free trading account and not suitable for it. Scalpers require tight spreads, ideally raw ones between 0.0 pips and 0.1 pips with a competitive commission structure for precise trading cost calculations, which is available in the direct market access (DMA) account.

Is Forex.com an ECN broker?

The STP Pro account at Forex.com offers access to raw spreads from markets with direct order routing to liquidity providers. While Forex.com does not state ECN execution, the technology infrastructure provides clients with the same result. The Commission account appears to utilize the same underlying order network.

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Summary

Forex.com (US) is a pure Forex broker and serves that particular market well. In operation since 2001, and with the CFTC as its regulator and holding NFA membership, traders have access to a secure trading environment. The broker's legitimacy is further enhanced by its corporate ownership, StoneX, which is a publicly-traded company. Traders have three account options, but only the commission-free Standard one grants the MT4 trading platform, upgraded with twenty EAs and custom indicators. Forex.com markets its proprietary alternative as the most sophisticated solution. The overall pricing environment is competitive and further reduced via the Active Trader promotion.

New traders have access to an excellent educational section, offering quality content. The global research team supplies frequently updated analysis and market commentary, while traders with a preference for automated trading solutions may qualify for free VPS hosting. Pure Forex traders without the desire for cross-asset diversification will find the overall product and service offering at Forex.com an excellent choice, which assisted this broker in becoming the top Forex choice in the US, and deservedly so.

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User Reviews

Did you have a good experience with this broker? A bad one? Tell our team and traders worldwide about your experience in our User Reviews tab. Your email address will not be posted.

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5 User Reviews
Lauren

I needed a US broker that trades with gold and silver. Happy I found you guys. Thanks!

vovkfx

News trading is unreal - crazy spread, requotes and slippage. Not once noticed price manipulation and frequent crashes terminal. All complaints, found the typical excuses that are technical points and fix everything soon. I am glad that even though the money was returned, though not without delay. If you want normal trading and earn money, and not just clicking buttons, look for reputable brokers or banks. 

Anubavsheik

I love to trade with OctaFX, as they have the best trading platform cTrader, where i am able to trade smoothly with all my trading orders executed instantly without any frustrating quotes happening, so even if i try trading in news like NFP it is successful and also my long term problem of needing to remember the session where i am trading is solved, as it is now written below on the platform which makes it great for me. So i would give them 10/10 marks!

ForexBrokerReviews

We are expert reviewer of Forex brokers and it is urgent to say that Forex.com is a good broker, opposite to most of the reviews found on the web. Every reader should be aware of the fact that most people are disappointed because of losing their money. But it is not the broker's fault; it is the traders who took wrong decisions. The biggest problem is that people are trading Forex without really taking care about risk warnings, that this is not suitable for everyone!

bill

Large broker with a great platform, however, the spreads are INSANE. Great research tools and training videos are wonderful, but if you can't profit from trades because fees (spreads) are too high, what's the use?????

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