FXCM was founded in 1991 in the United States, but has since left the U.S. market and shifted its focus to other regions. Since 2018, FXCM started a rebranding phase as a Leucadia company owned by Jefferies Financial Group. The Jefferies Financial Group is listed on the NYSE under ticker symbol JEF and is a constituent of the S&P400 index as well as a Fortune 500 firm. Despite its troubled past, as of March 2018, FXCM has remained the second-largest retail Forex brokerage outside of Japan.
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Regulation and Security
The UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is the primary regulator of FXCM under license number 217689. In 2014, the FCA fined FXCM for defrauding traders. This resulted in an FCA fine of £4 million and restitution paid to clients of £6 million. It is important to note that those fines were levied under its now-defunct parent company. FXCM has been fully compliant since its acquisition by the Jefferies Financial Group. Traders are protected under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), up to £85,000.
FXCM is also regulated in France by the Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF), the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) in Australia, and the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) in South Africa. The French regulated entity is compliant with the Financial Instruments Directive 2014/65/EU or MiFID II, and the EU’s 4th Anti-Money Laundering Directive. Traders are additionally protected by the Fonds De Garantie Des Dépôts Et De Résolution (FGDR) up to a maximum of €70,000, per EU Directives 2014/49/EU and Directive 2014/59/EU.
Clients' funds remain fully segregated from company funds as mandated under the FCA Client Assets Sourcebook (CASS) for its UK entity. All third-party institutions have a credit rating equal to the FCA Credit Quality Step 5. All four FXCM entities are in full compliance with its regulators, and this brokerage has done an excellent job of regaining traders’ trust.
FXCM’s FCA regulation is relevant to traders in the United Kingdom only, but traders in other areas can be served by the company’s other high-level regulations through the world.
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FXCM earns the majority of its revenues from the mark-up on spreads across assets. The EUR/USD is listed with an average spread of 1.3 pips, which is on the high side compared to other retail Forex brokers. The Spread Betting account offered solely to UK traders carries 0.7 pips spread for the same currency pair. Index and commodity CFDs are priced competitively. Active traders will receive significantly reduced spreads, 0.2 pips on the EUR/USD, but a $25 commission per $1,000,000 traded applies.
Swap rates on overnight positions apply, and the precise amount may be retrieved from inside the trading platforms. Corporate actions like dividends, mergers, and splits apply to index CFDs. A withdrawal fee of up to $40 is levied on traders, which is a shame as many brokers don’t charge for withdrawals. An inactivity fee of $50 or a currency equivalent is deducted from accounts dormant for twelve months. A $30 VPS Hosting charge applies for traders utilizing this service. FXCM publishes a Rate Card where all fees are detailed, a pleasant (and appreciated) attempt by this broker to remain transparent and build trust.Back to Top
What Can I Trade
The asset selection at FXCM includes thirty-nine currency pairs, which makes Forex the most significant asset class that this broker offers. Thirteen index CFDs, nine commodity CFDs, and one bond CFD complete the selection. Five cryptocurrency CFDs and one cryptocurrency basket have recently been added. Though this asset selection is somewhat limited compared to that of other brokers, it should be sufficient for traders at all levels.
Let’s take a look at the currency pairs offered by FXCM:
One of the best advantages we found during our FXCM review is that this broker collaborates with ten liquidity providers and prime brokers to retrieve the best prices for each trade. This sets FXCM apart from most smaller or newer brokers who offer less liquidity or are less transparent about their liquidity providers.
Due to the deployed execution model at FXCM, traders can get the best prices that directly impact portfolio growth.
This brokerage executed well for its clients in 2019, and its results speak for themselves, and are worth looking at more deeply if you’re considering FXCM as your Forex broker.
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FXCM caters to most traders from its CFD account type. UK based traders can take advantage of the Spread Betting account, featuring tax-free trading. FXCM caters to institutional clients through its prime brokerage unit labeled FXCM Pro.
High-volume traders may qualify for the Active Trader account, where spreads are drastically lowered, and a $30 commission applies per $1 million traded. Traders surpassing $150 million in notional trading volume will benefit from a reduction to $25. Special pricing is available on request if the volume exceeds $500 million per month. This account provides a more competitive trading environment, and the commission is priced at the low-end of the spectrum as compared to competitors.
Traders who satisfy two of three require criteria qualify for a professional account. The maximum leverage is capped at 1:30 for retail traders and is increased to 1:400 for professional traders. Various assets have different margin requirements, impacting leverage. A detailed list of margin requirements is provided and regularly updated, a continuing show of the broker’s commitment to transparency and reliability.
UK based traders will enjoy reduced costs in the Spread Betting Account.
High-volume traders are treated to the most competitive trading environment at FXCM.
Qualified traders may request an upgrade to a professional account.
Institutional traders are serviced through the prime brokerage arm FXCM Pro.
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FXCM traders have access to four trading platforms, as FXCM has truly set itself as a leader in this category. The proprietary FXCM Trading Station is not only FXCM’s most superior gateway to financial markets; it may also be one of the best platforms on the market. It is equipped with a charting package, intensive support for automated trading solutions, advanced indicators, and market data provided free of charge. Third-party plugins are maintained to further customize the trading solution, and a free $99 plugin is granted by this brokerage. FXCM has developed an outstanding trading platform.
The MT4 trading platform is also available at FXCM. Many brokers ignore tens of millions of traders relying on the MT4 infrastructure for their trading operations, but at this brokerage, it is not the case. Traders need to upgrade MT4 through third-party plugins, and over 2,000 free ones are available at FXCM, together with 700 more for purchase. The number continues growing due to the popularity of the platform. NinjaTrader is also available, a lesser-known trading platform but the most prevailing independent one. Social trading is offered via ZuluTrade, a market leader in this sector.
FXCM has developed an excellent trading platform, a magnificent gateway to financial markets.
The MT4 trading platform is also provided, giving traders a solid choice.
NinjaTrader, the most popular independent trading platform, allows traders to customize their trading experience.
ZuluTrade, a market leader in its category, enables social trading at FXCM.
FXCM grants one $99 plugin free of charge to its traders, which can be procured from the FXCM store.
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Mirror Trader is a trading platform which allows traders to follow the strategies and signals of other traders. It's an ideal solution for those who follow the FX markets, but who don't always have the time to determine what and when to trade.
Mirror trading at FXCM highlights which currency pairs are performing best in the current market conditions and sends signals when to enter and exit a trade. It allows traders to take advantage of market movements even when they are at work or asleep.
With Mirror Trader traders can evaluate and build a portfolio of back-tested strategies, or can follow individual signals that support your own trading analysis.
FXCM recommends a balance for a Mirror Trader account of US$10,000 because a higher starting balance provides more flexibility in trading. Because Mirror Trader systems are auto-traded, multiple positions could be opened at any one time. Additionally, each system requires a certain level of capital in order to operate effectively.
The Mirror trading platform at FXCM can be used in a demo account with $50,000 in virtual funds so beginner traders can review the trading strategies and see how automated trading works.
FXCM Mirror Trader has not been available in Japan since 2015 when FXCM announced that it would no longer be supporting Tradency’s Mirror Trader. Mirror Trader is generally considered to be FXCM’s primary copy and social trading platform add-on, but other similar alternatives have become available such as ZuluTrade.Back to Top
FXCM is fully committed to automated trading solutions for its professional traders, and institutional clients. It provides four free API solutions for traders across the spectrum to develop automated trading solutions that communicate directly with the FXCM trading server. The fxcmpy Python package is offered exclusively for the REST API and consists of CFD Python wrappers to simplify algorithmic trading solutions. This broker also provides market data, further supporting third-party automated trading solutions. Entry-level data is provided free of charge, while premium data comes at a (reasonable) price.
Automated trading solutions often require a VPS service to operate 24/7. FXCM offers two VPS solutions, charged at $30 or a currency equivalent per month. Traders who exceed $500K notional trading volume for three consecutive months will get the fee reimbursed. A broad range of free and paid plugins for all trading platforms are hosted by this brokerage, completing the extensive support for automated trading solutions from retail accounts through professional traders to asset management firms. FXCM provides a great example of how to enrich your offerings and is truly a leader in this sector.
Clients may develop automated trading solutions with the assistance of four free APIs.
The fxcmpy Python package provides wrappers for the REST API.
FXCM also provides market data, ranging from free entry-level data to priced premium data feeds.
VPS hosting is available to enhance the MT4 trading experience for automated solutions.
An extensive library of third-party plugins and solutions for all supported trading platforms is available.
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Research and Education
Since FXCM houses a prime brokerage unit, research and education are naturally provided to all traders. Besides an incredibly detailed economic calendar and third-party market news, FXCM provides traders with a daily newsletter powered by Trading Central. Another service generates exclusive trading signals free of charge for all live account holders. The Market Scanner allows traders to select a series of technical indicators and returns buy and sell recommendations based on the input. FXCM Plus gives traders access to detailed trading signals and technical analysis.
Education is provided via free online forex trading courses, webinars hosted by FXCM Senior Market Specialist Russel Shor, and written content with exceptional quality. The Insights section provides more detailed educational content, and new traders have access to considerable material to deepen their knowledge base. FXCM is conducting research and taking education seriously, setting the bar high for other brokers and providing an absolutely fantastic experience for its users.
FXCM issues a daily newsletter powered by Trading Central, distributed to all clients who opt-in to receive it.
Exclusive Trading Signals represent another service for traders to receive trading signals.
FXCM Plus provides traders with a comprehensive research portal.
The Market Scanner allows traders to quickly scan for trading signals based on the selection of various technical indicators.
A well-presented educational section allows new traders to enhance their knowledge.
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Customer support is provided 24/5, and traders are advised to access the help center before contacting support, as it covers the most common topics. Should traders require assistance, they may call any of the toll-free numbers provided, contact support via SMS (a service rarely offered but highly appreciated!), e-mail the support team, engage via live chat, or call the trading desk. The extensive support system in place is superior to most competitors, but the majority of traders are unlikely to require it.
Customer service follows high standards, as evidenced by the comprehensive approach to it.
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Bonuses and Promotions
At the time of this FXCM review, the broker provided no particular bonuses or promotions, in keeping with regulatory requirements.Back to Top
Opening an Account
A simple online application form handles new account applications, the standard operating procedure. New traders will go through a quick three-step application process at FXCM. As stipulated by regulatory requirements, each account needs to satisfy KYC/AML requirements. This is conducted with a copy of the trader’s ID and one proof of residency document. Since the rebranding of this brokerage as a Leucadia company, traders can absolutely trust FXCM with their information.
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Deposits and Withdrawals
FXCM provides traders the option to fund their trading account by using bank wires, credit/debit cards, Skrill, Neteller, Klarna, and Rapid Transfer. As mandated by AML requirements, the name of the payment processor needs to match the account name. The processing time is listed as one business day, and most of the required information regarding deposits and withdrawals are provided inside the back-office. Third-party fees are applicable, and traders are advised that withdrawals using credit/debit cards are limited to the amount of the deposit through the utilized cards.
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- Broker's Name : FXCM
- Headquarter : United Kingdom
- Regulation : FCA, ASIC, AMF, FSCA
- Type of Broker : No Dealing Desk
- U.S. Clients Allowed :
- Minimum Deposit : $50
- Maximum Leverage : 1:50
- Commissions / Spreads : Both
- Account 1 : CFD
- Account 2 : Spread Betting
- Account 3 : Active Trader
- Account 4 : Professional Trader
- Demo Account :
- Islamic Account :
- Segregated Account :
- Managed Accounts :
- Institutional Accounts :
- Deposit Options :
- Withdrawal Options :
- ETFs :
- CFDs :
- Commodities :
- Metals :
- Stocks :
- Oil :
- Gold :
- Binary Options :
- Indices :
- Type of Platform : MetaTrader 4, Proprietary platform, Web-based
- Platform Languages :
- OS Compatibility :
- Trading Signals :
- Charting Package :
- Market Analysis :
- Chart Trading :
- Automated Trading :
- Scalping :
- Hedging :
- Mobile Alerts :
- E-mail Alerts :
- Trailing Stops :
- Guaranteed Stop Loss :
- Guaranteed Limit Orders :
- Guaranteed Execution :
- One-click Execution :
- OCO Orders :
- Interest on Margin :
- Web-based Trading :
- Mobile Trading :
- Website Languages :
- Support Hours : 24/5
- E-mail Support :
- SMS Support :
- Chat :
Pros and Cons
- Wide choice of user-friendly trading platforms
- Top liquidity providers
- Excellent research and education centers
- Fees are on the high side
Is FXCM a Good Broker?
FXCM is one of the world’s most highly regulated Forex / CFD brokerages. It is regulated in 4 different countries, including the European Union via France, and Australia, the U.K., and South Africa. FXCM has been in business since 1991.
What is the Minimum Deposit for FXCM?
FXCM’s minimum deposit is U.S. $50 or 50 units of any other currency in which they accept deposits.
Is FXCM a Market Maker?
No. FXCM operates a no dealing desk trade execution model, linking its clients orders together.
Where is FXCM based?
London, UK, is the location of the FXCM headquarters.
How does FXCM make money?
FXCM makes money from trading fees charged to its clients such as spreads and commissions, as well as overnight financing rates when they are negative.
How can I deposit into an FXCM account?
Bank wires, credit/debit cards, Skrill, Neteller, Klarna, and Rapid Transfer are the available options.
What is the minimum lot size at FXCM?
The minimum transaction size for currencies is 0.01 lots and 1.0 for CFD contracts.
When does a margin-call take place at FXCM?
A margin call is issued when the equity margin level contracts below 50%.
Is FXCM regulated?
The UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is the primary regulator of FXCM under license number 217689. This broker is also regulated in France but the AMF, in Australia by ASIC, and in South Africa by the FSCA.
What is the maximum leverage offered by FXCM?
Retail clients have access to maximum leverage of 1:30, while professional traders are capped at 1:400.
How do I open an account with FXCM?
FXCM has an online application form, which is the standard operating procedure.
What trading platforms does FXCM offer?
FXCM provides traders with its proprietary Trading Station, the MT4 trading platform, NinjaTrader, and ZuluTrade.Back to Top
FXCM is a brokerage with a somewhat troubled past but what appears to be a very bright future. Transparency has increased drastically, and 2019, the first full year as a rebranded brokerage, represented a great one for clients of FXCM and for the company itself. The broker has clearly shown a sincere desire to move ahead as a trustworthy brokerage.
Unfortunately, one of the biggest obstacles for FXCM to be considered a better choice is overall asset selection. Pure Forex traders may find the thirty-nine currency pairs acceptable, but cross-asset diversification is not entirely possible. Active traders will find the reduced spreads plus commissions generous and may want to operate a portfolio at FXCM. Institutional traders are serviced via FXCM Pro, the prime brokerage unit.
Automated trading solutions enjoy extensive support at this brokerage, all four trading platforms fully support it, and FXCM provides four free API’s to developers on top of a wide selection of third-party plugins. The research section offers a tremendous asset to all types of traders and warrants an account opening to retrieve free access to it. Education is also taken seriously with daily webinars and a solid selection of well-written content. The FXCM Plus service should be considered by traders when deciding if this broker deserves their trust.
High trading fees may be a deterrent for potential traders, but the extensive range of platform choices and top quality research and education compensate for these fees. The research section represents one of the most prominent services FXCM provides and deserves consideration on its own. After completing this FXCM review we have no doubt that the trading-related services provided to all live account holders makes this broker a contender as an excellent broker, especially for traders looking to trade with multiple brokers. FXCM has a tremendous amount of untapped potential, and we have every expectation that the broker will continue to shine in the future.Back to Top
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