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7 Best FCA-Regulated Forex Brokers for 2024

Looking for the top FCA-regulated broker? Based on our hands-on analysis, we’ve identified 7 best options tailored to various trading needs. Practical tips from our experts are included.

By:
Dan Blystone
Reviewed By:
Ola Alder
Updated: Feb 21, 2024

List of Top FCA-Regulated Brokers

Intuitive and robust proprietary platform. MT4 and MT5, TradingView. Regulated by top-tier regulators including FCA. Low spreads. Over 1,100 tradable instruments.

Top-tier regulations, including FCA. Low fees. MT4 and MT5, TradingView, and Agena. Futures and options trading for UK traders. Excellent research and education.

Intuitive and robust Edge platform. Reliable customer support. In-depth educational materials, with interactive courses. 70+ currency pairs. Regulated by FCA and CySEC.

MT4 available across desktop, web, and mobile. MT4 MultiTerminal for managed accounts. VPS Hosting. Regulated by FCA and CySEC. STP and ECN accounts. Dedicated account manager.

Tax saving spread betting account for UK residents. 17,000+ instruments. IG Academy with Spread Betting course. Award-winning platform.

Low spreads. Professional-grade Next Generation platform and MT4. Over 12,000 trading instruments. Crypto trading for professional traders. Spread betting available. Multiple top-tier regulators including FCA.

Low fees. Regulated by top-tier regulators including FCA. TickTrader, MT4 and MT5, and TradingView. Professional accounts with leverage of up to 1:500.

FCA Regulation: Protecting UK Financial Markets

Founded in 2013, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) operates independently of the UK government regulating 50,000 financial services firms and overseeing financial markets in the United Kingdom.

The primary objectives of the FCA are to safeguard consumers, uphold market integrity, and foster competition to benefit consumers. The FCA establishes rules and standards to ensure that financial institutions treat their customers fairly, provide suitable products and services, and prioritize customer protection over their financial gains.

There are many benefits to working with an FCA-regulated broker. Traders can be assured that their funds are segregated from the funds of their broker, that they have negative balance protection, and that their deposit is insured up to £85,000. The FCA limits the maximum leverage for retail traders to a relatively modest 1:30.

How did FX Empire select the Best FCA-Regulated Brokers?

There are many benefits to working with an FCA-regulated broker. Traders can be assured that their funds are segregated from the funds of their broker, that they have negative balance protection, and that their deposit is insured up to £85,000. The FCA limits the maximum leverage for retail traders to a relatively modest 1:30.

FXEmpire's Methodology

We carefully considered the needs of traders seeking to work with FCA-regulated brokers and focused on the points that benefit this group the most.

  • We selected brokers authorized and regulated by FCA UK.
  • We looked for brokers with UK-based headquarters.
  • We assessed brokers’ level of financial strength and transparency.
  • We tested fees and trading costs, including spreads, swap fees, inactivity fees, and withdrawal fees.
  • We conducted a test drive for each platform, digging into available order types, charting, watchlists, and UX.
  • We checked the availability of a strong variety of tradable CFD instruments, including CFDs on UK stocks.
  • We looked for fast, responsive, and helpful customer support across the phone, live chat, and email.
  • We verified the availability of a good variety of deposit and withdrawal methods, making it fast and easy to move money in and out of your account.
  • We checked the available account types for CFD trading and whether they can cater to both beginners and advanced traders.
  • We looked for insightful research and educational content to enhance traders’ understanding of the financial markets, develop effective trading strategies, and make informed decisions.

Our team of experts has identified each broker’s strengths and weaknesses using FX Empire’s comprehensive methodology. Here’s how we test.

Now let’s go through the selected brokers.

Best Overall

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 83% 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.
  • Min Deposit
    $0
  • Tradable Instruments
    1253
  • Fees
    Medium

ActivTrades was founded in 2001, making it one of the business’s oldest forex and CFD brokers. The UK-based firm offers access to over 1000 CFD instruments, including forex, shares, indices, cryptocurrencies, ETFs, commodities, and bonds.

  • FCA Regulated UK Entity: ActivTrades PLC
  • FCA Firm Reference Number (FRN): 434413
  • Headquarters: The Loom 2.5, 14 Gowers Walk, London, E1 8PY
  • Available Leverage: 1:30 for retail traders, 1:400 for professional traders

The proprietary ActivTrader platform is well-designed and intuitive enough for beginners. It is also loaded with professional features that can accommodate experienced traders. ActivTrader’s unique progressive trailing stop allows you to set up two additional tiers, automatically changing your trailing stop distance if the market reaches a predefined trigger price level. This feature helps you lock your profit in strongly trending markets. MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader 5, and TradingView platforms are also available at ActivTrades.

In my live tests, I experienced highly competitive spreads in some instruments, for example, 0.7 pips in EUR/USD. Traders can choose from over 1,100 tradable instruments from different asset classes, including FX pairs, commodities, indices, share CFDs, ETFs, bonds, and cryptocurrencies. Regular webinars from industry experts cover topics such as technical analysis and the psychology of trading that can help to set clients up for success in the markets.

Pros
  • Innovative in-house platform.
  • Competitive trading fees.
  • Fast order execution.
  • Progressive trailing stop.
Cons
  • No third-party research.

Best for Beginners

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 72% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with Tickmill UK Ltd. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs, or any other of our products work, and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.
  • Min Deposit
    $100
  • Tradable Instruments
    747
  • Fees
    Low

London-based Tickmill performed well in all major categories of our hands-on tests. This well-rounded broker was founded in 2014 and provides access to a wide selection of CFDs, futures contracts, and options.

  • FCA-Regulated UK Entity: Tickmill UK Ltd
  • FCA Firm Reference Number (FRN): 717270
  • Headquarters: 3rd Floor, 27–32 Old Jewry, London, England, EC2R 8DQ
  • Available Leverage: 1:30 for retail traders, 1:500 for professional traders

Among platforms, Tickmill clients can choose between MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader 5, and the Tickmill mobile app. Opening a Classic Account with Tickmill requires a minimum deposit of only $100, making it accessible to traders with a modest budget. I noted that Tickmill provides trading micro-lots, which is beneficial for beginners aiming to limit their risk exposure during live trading.

I also conducted thorough testing for over two weeks, engaging with Tickmill’s customer support through phone, live chat, and email, and found their assistance to be consistently reliable and helpful.

Tickmill’s assortment of research and education materials is extensive and diverse, incorporating third-party tools like Autochartist. I experienced tight spreads at Tickmill, especially in forex and indices, which help traders keep their costs to a minimum. In my hands-on tests, I recorded spreads of 1.6 pips in EUR/USD and 18 pips in gold.

Pros
  • Licensed by top-tier regulators.
  • Competitive fees.
  • Wide selection of tradable instruments.
  • Diverse account types.
  • Robust range of trading platforms and tools.
Cons
  • Customer support is available only during office hours.

Best Forex Trading Platform

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 84.69% 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.
  • Min Deposit
    $100
  • Tradable Instruments
    2157
  • Fees
    Low

FxPro is an award-winning broker providing access to trading in forex and CFDs on commodities, stocks, indices, futures, and cryptocurrencies. As a No Dealing Desk (NDD) broker, client orders are executed with no dealing desk intervention. Founded in 2006, FxPro now has retail and institutional clients in over 170 countries and is regulated by multiple authorities globally, including the top-tier FCA and CySEC.

  • FCA Regulated UK Entity: FxPro UK Limited
  • FCA Firm Reference Number (FRN): 509956
  • Headquarters: 13-14 Basinghall Street, City Of London, EC2V 5BQE UK
  • Available Leverage: 1:30 for retail traders, 1:500 for professional traders

FxPro’s proprietary platform called Edge provides a smooth and intuitive trading experience. This web-based platform is highly customizable and has popular features such as one-click trading, alerts, and trading from the chart. MetaTrader and cTrader platforms are also available to clients, and these offer automated trading.

FxPro also shines in the Research category with high-quality in-house analysis and a range of proprietary and third-party tools. Materials can cater to both novice and advanced traders, and fresh content is added multiple times daily. I found the live squawk and newsfeed available in the client portal useful for staying on top of the latest stories moving the markets.

Pros
  • Intuitive in-house platform.
  • Top-notch research content and tools.
  • Interactive courses from CME Group.
  • Multiple trading account types.
  • Competitive spreads.
Cons
  • High recommended minimum deposit.

Best MT4

Our products are traded on margin and carry a high level of risk and it is possible to lose all your capital. These products may not be suitable for everyone and you should ensure that you understand the risks involved.
  • Min Deposit
    $0
  • Tradable Instruments
    321
  • Fees
    Medium

Founded in 2010, IronFX is a global forex and CFD broker with an impressive range of tradable instruments, tools, and account types. The Cyprus-based broker has entities regulated by top-tier CySEC and FCA as well as an unregulated offshore entity.

  • FCA Regulated UK Entity: Notesco UK Limited
  • FCA Firm Reference Number (FRN): 585561
  • Headquarters: 2, Iapetou Street, Agios Athanasios, CY-4101 Limassol, Cyprus
  • Available Leverage: 1:30

Traders can access the popular MT4 platform via desktop, web, and mobile. A detailed user guide covers everything from getting started to auto-trading and custom indicators. The IronFX Personal Multi Account Manager (PMAM) platform allows money managers to trade and manage multiple MT4 accounts simultaneously.

Virtual Private Server (VPS) hosting is also provided, which enables clients to access their trading accounts anywhere, cut downtime, and enhance the speed of order execution. In my tests, I recorded spreads as low as 0.9 pips in EUR/USD and 38 pips in gold.

Pros
  • MetaTrader 4 for desktop, web, and mobile.
  • Seven accounts to choose from.
  • Multiple deposit and withdrawal options.
  • Wide range of products.
Cons
  • Limited research materials.

Best for Spread Betting

4.6
71% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money
  • Min Deposit
    $250
  • Tradable Instruments
    17252
  • Fees
    Medium

IG invented financial spread betting in 1974 and launched the first online dealing platform for financial spread betting in 1998. The London-based broker now provides access to spread betting in over 17,000 markets. UK clients can spread bet without paying capital gains tax or stamp duty on profits. IG Group is a public company listed on the London Stock Exchange and is part of the FTSE 250 Index.

  • FCA Regulated UK Spread Betting Entity: IG Index Limited
  • FCA Firm Reference Number (FRN): 114059
  • Headquarters: Cannon Bridge House 25 Dowgate Hill London EC4R 2YA
  • Available Leverage: 1:30 for retail traders, 1:200 for professional traders

The award-winning IG Web Platform is intuitive, highly customizable, and packs a meaty range of features. These include popular items like watchlists, alerts, one-click trading and trading from the chart. While trading on the IG Platform, I appreciated the ability to customize it to your preference and create multiple workspaces. The suite of tools – including trading signals from Autochartist, client sentiment, and the news feed from Thomson Reuters – is outstanding.

The IG Academy offers material catering to beginner, intermediate, and advanced traders. The courses are broken down into short, easy-to-digest lessons and feature a quiz at the end to aid the learning process. The IG Academy features a 7 lesson course on Spread Betting, which explains how it works, and how it differs from CFD trading. I judged the content as well crafted and helpful to traders in establishing a foundation of knowledge.

Pros
  • Spread betting pioneer.
  • Massive range of tradable instruments.
  • Great tools and research.
  • Feature-rich and intuitive web platform and mobile app.
Cons
  • Customer support hours are limited

Best for Professional Traders

Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 76% of retail investor accounts lose money when spread betting and/or trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how spread bets and CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.
  • Min Deposit
    $0
  • Tradable Instruments
    10762
  • Fees
    Low

CFD industry giant CMC Markets was founded in 1989 and is listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) under the ticker symbol CMCX. The broker is overseen by multiple regulators across the globe, including the UK FCA.

  • FCA Regulated UK Entity: CMC Markets UK plc
  • FCA Firm Reference Number (FRN): 173730
  • Headquarters: 133 Houndsditch London EC3A 7BXE UK
  • Available Leverage: 1:30 for retail traders, 1:500 for professional traders

Professional traders can benefit from the flagship proprietary Next Generation trading platform which has advanced functionality and an attractive, user-friendly interface CMC Markets provides its clients with a diverse and rich product catalog of 12,000 tradable instruments that place this broker in an elite group.

Active traders especially will appreciate CMC Markets’ tight spreads available that are among the most competitive in the forex and CFD industry. For example, in my live tests, I experienced spreads of 0.7 pips in EUR/USD and 1 pip in the Dax 40.

CMC Markets also excels in research materials, which include quality in-house analysis, third-party content from Reuters and Morningstar, and extensive video programming.

Pros
  • Competitive spreads and fees.
  • Outstanding range of tradable Instruments.
  • Cutting-edge proprietary platform.
  • Strong research resources.
Cons
  • Inactivity fee.

Best Low Spreads

FXOpen Ltd: 60% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider | FXOpen EU Ltd: 77% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs.
  • Min Deposit
    $1
  • Tradable Instruments
    622
  • Fees
    Medium

Founded in 2005, London-based FXOpen provides access to trading in forex and CFDs on commodities, indices, shares, and cryptocurrencies. FXOpen has entities regulated by the top-tier FCA, CySEC, and ASIC and one offshore entity that is unregulated.

  • FCA Regulated UK Entity: FXOpen Ltd
  • FCA Firm Reference Number (FRN): 579202
  • Headquarters: 80, Coleman St London EC2R 5BJ UK
  • Available Leverage: 1:30 for retail traders, 1:500 for professional traders

A pioneer in the CFD industry, FXOpen was the first forex broker to offer its clients ECN trading via the MT4 terminal in 2009. When testing the ECN account, I recorded spreads of 0 pips with a commission of $3.50 per side – far more cost-efficient than most CFD brokers. Reliable customer support is another area of strength at this broker, and I received excellent follow-through over two weeks during my review process.

FXOpen has an advanced proprietary platform called TickTrader and also offers trading via MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader 5, and TradingView. I rate this lineup of a first-class proprietary platform, along with three other leading platforms, as way better than the average for the industry.

Pros
  • Rock bottom trading costs.
  • Oversight by three top-tier regulators.
  • Reliable customer service.
  • Great selection of platforms.
Cons
  • Limited educational materials.

Our Methodology

In selecting the best FCA regulated forex and CFD brokers we used the results of our advanced proprietary methodology. All of the brokers listed were among the leaders in our tests.

FXEmpire has been reviewing brokers since 2010 and has pioneered the in-depth evaluation of CFD brokers. Our process has taken years to refine and involved hundreds of reviews. We’ve gone to a granular level – with over 250 data points in our analysis of each broker – so you can feel confident in selecting the right platform.

To provide the most comprehensive view, we break down the brokers according to nine different categories:

  • Trust
  • Fees
  • Platforms and tools
  • Tradable instruments
  • Customer service
  • Deposit and withdrawal
  • Account types
  • Research
  • Education

In our individual broker reviews, we explain complex areas like regulatory status, so you can easily understand the safety of your funds and the benefits you are guaranteed.

Data is gathered through live testing, research, detailed questionnaires, and in-person broker demonstrations. An account is opened with each broker, focusing primarily on the services of one entity and testing using the most standard account type and platform. We conduct live tests of spreads and measure overnight swap fees and account-related costs.

Our side-by-side analysis reveals whether a broker is competitive in relation to the industry as a whole. Trading platforms take time to master, but we have already done the legwork for you and our evaluations highlight their important features and usability.

For this guide, we selected brokers authorized and regulated by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and based in the UK. We then assessed each broker’s level of financial strength and transparency to ensure reliability. In order to understand the cost-effectiveness, we tested fees and trading costs, including spreads, swap fees, inactivity fees, and withdrawal fees. We took each platform for a test drive, examining available order types, charting, watchlists, and the overall user experience.

Our search also prioritized the availability of a wide range of tradable CFD instruments, including CFDs on UK stocks, and responsiveness of customer support across phone, live chat, and email. We ensured that each broker offered a good variety of fast and easy deposit and withdrawal methods, facilitating smooth transactions.

We looked at the range of account types available for CFD trading to determine if they could cater to both beginners and advanced traders. Finally, we considered the quality of research and educational content offered by each broker, with the aim of helping traders better understand the financial markets, develop effective trading strategies, and make informed decisions.

Meet our Writers

The team of forex and CFD writers and editors at FX Empire is composed of trading industry professionals and seasoned financial journalists. Our writers have been published on leading financial websites such as Investopedia and Forbes. In addition, they all have extensive trading experience.

Get to Know Our Authors

Dan BlystoneBroker Analyst

Dan Blystone began his career in the trading industry in 1998 on the floor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. Later Dan gained insight into the forex industry during his time as a Series 3 licenced futures and forex broker. He also traded at a couple of different prop trading firms in Chicago. Dan is well-equipped to recommend the best forex brokers due to his extensive experience and understanding of the brokerage industry.

Jitan SolankiBroker Analyst

Jitan Solanki is a professional trader, market analyst, and educator. He day trades major currency and index markets and focuses on swing trading US equities and commodities. A qualified Market Technician, Jitan also works with trader education and brokerage companies on various projects. These include market analysis, live trading events, and broker reviews. As an experienced trader and educator, Jitan brings all his qualities in action when reviewing and recommending brokers.

Plamen StoyanovBroker Analyst

Having been a retail trader since 2013, Plamen has gained an in-depth understanding of the challenges that novice traders face today. His expertise is swing trading and day trading with a heavy emphasis on psychological and fundamental analysis. Plamen’s favourite trading instruments include FX majors and gold. He earned a Bachelor's degree in Economics and International Relations. Plamen's broad experience has equipped him with the expertise to recommend the best forex brokers.

Vladimir ZernovBroker Analyst

In more than 15 years of trading in the financial markets, Vladimir dealt with a wide range of brokers and financial instruments. His career as a day-trader at a proprietary trading firm goes back to 2007. Later, Vladimir turned to longer time frames and became an independent trader and analyst managing his own portfolio. Using his experience, he helps traders find the best broker in his reviews.

How to choose a forex broker regulated by FCA?

When looking for a broker regulated by the FCA, you should pay special attention to the following points.

What protection does FCA provide to traders?

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is a Tier-1 regulatory body in the UK that is considered one of the top and strictest regulators due to its rigorous regulatory standards and commitment to ensuring a secure and fair trading environment. To be authorized and regulated by FCA, brokers must undergo audits, meet capital requirements, and provide segregated accounts and negative balance protection.

FCA regulation ensures that the broker complies with fair and ethical trading practices and participates in the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) that protects client deposits up to £85,000 in case the broker becomes insolvent.

You can search the FCA website to confirm the broker’s status and check for any disciplinary action. The broker’s size and operating history are also worth considering. You can usually find these on the company’s LinkedIn page.

Also, the FCA imposes restrictions on the leverage available to retail traders. The maximum leverage for major forex pairs is 1:30, for non-major forex pairs, gold, and major indices it is 1:20. For commodities other than gold and non-major equity indices, the limit is 1:10, and for individual equities and other reference values, it is 1:5. For cryptocurrencies, it’s limited to 1:2.

Read more about best regulated forex brokers.

What to consider when choosing an FCA-regulated broker?

Most leading forex and CFD brokers have multiple entities, often a mix of top-tier regulators such as FCA, CySEC, or ASIC, and at least one offshore entity. To get the benefits of FCA regulation, you must open an account with the FCA-regulated entity of the broker. You need to watch out for this because some forex and CFD brokers will steer customers to open accounts at their offshore entity instead of the entity overseen by a top-tier regulator.

Are the fees competitive?

Working with a broker that keeps spreads and commissions to a minimum can make the difference between profit and loss at the end of the day. This is a crucial point for day traders. Also, don’t be caught off guard by miscellaneous account-related fees, such as inactivity and withdrawal fees. As a major hub for forex trading, you might expect that the UK is home to some of the most competitive forex brokers in terms of trading fees, and our tests proved this to be true.

Check out our list of best lowest spread forex brokers.

What is the minimum deposit?

Typically, the minimum deposits at CFD brokers are relatively low. For example, among FCA-regulated brokers, they can range from $0 in the case of CMC Markets to $100 in the case of FxPro.

What account types are available?

A broad range of account types helps a broker cater to different trader profiles. For example, a simple STP account may be the best for beginners in the markets, while an ECN/raw spread account can help sophisticated, active traders keep their costs to a minimum.

ECN accounts typically route orders straight to the interbank market, while STP accounts send orders directly to a counterparty that might be another STP broker, market broker, or ECN broker. Via ECN accounts, spreads are tighter and the speed of order execution is faster, making them suitable for active, short-term traders. However, a commission is charged in addition to the spread.

Read more about Best STP forex brokers and Best ECN forex brokers.

How to choose a trading platform?

When choosing a trading platform, prioritize one that is intuitive and easy to navigate to ensure a smooth start in the trading world. Opt for platforms, typically browser-based, that are developed by the broker as they tend to be more user-friendly. Key features to look for include watchlists, trading from the chart, search functions, news feeds, and a customizable interface.

Check out our dedicated guide on best forex platforms.

Platforms like MetaTrader 4 and 5 offer advanced features such as backtesting, automated trading, and a wide range of order types, although they might be less user-friendly. These considerations will guide you in selecting a platform that suits your trading style and needs.

Read more about best MetaTrader 4 brokers and best MetaTrader 5 brokers.

Is customer support reliable?

Having solid support on hand is essential. Check the hours of availability, for example, whether help is on hand 24/7 or only during business hours. Chat support is the most convenient, so look for an easy-to-access chat window built into the broker platform. In the case of a platform outage, it is also important to be able to contact support via phone.

What does being classified as a professional trader at an FCA-regulated broker mean?

Being designated as a professional trader at an FCA-regulated broker allows access to greater leverage, and trading in CFDs on cryptocurrencies. However, professional traders don’t benefit from negative balance protection, meaning you’re responsible for preventing your account from slipping into a negative balance and your losses could surpass your initial deposit. Also, certain categories of professional clients are not eligible for compensation under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).

What is required to be classified as a professional trader at an FCA-regulated broker?

To be eligible to be categorized as a professional client, you must meet two of the following three criteria.

  • You have carried out transactions, in significant size, on the relevant market at an average frequency of 10 per quarter over the previous four quarters.
  • The size of your financial instrument portfolio, defined as including cash deposits and financial instruments, exceeds €500,000.
  • You work or have worked in the financial sector for at least one year in a professional position, which requires knowledge of the transactions or services envisaged.

How to avoid forex and CFD scams?

A common scam in the forex and CFD industry involves vendors offering a trading strategy that guarantees an outlandishly high return in little time. These may involve automated trading using bots or a signal service where trades are shared via chat or social media. Nobody can guarantee returns with certainty, and it is more likely that such strategies will lose money. When assessing strategy or signal providers, you should look for a live track record audited by a third party, and also be conscious that past performance does not guarantee future results.

Traders should also be cautious about opening an account with an unregulated offshore broker. Such brokers may offer a straightforward account opening process, bonuses, and high levels of leverage but client funds are typically not protected. Meanwhile, brokers regulated by top-tier authorities must undergo regular audits and are held accountable for misconduct. Traders can also benefit from having their funds held in segregated accounts, negative balance protection, and a compensation fund in the event of broker insolvency.

FAQ

The FCA (Financial Conduct Authority) is the primary financial regulatory body in the United Kingdom. It is responsible for overseeing and regulating financial firms and markets, promoting competition, protecting consumers, and maintaining the stability of the UK's financial system.
Clients of FCA-regulated brokers have negative balance protection, segregated funds, and insurance of up to £85,000.
By searching on FCA register (https://register.fca.org.uk/s/), you can see whether a forex broker is regulated by the FCA. Check the broker's listing to confirm their regulatory status, such as being "Authorized" or "Registered" by the FCA.
The difference between being authorized by the FCA and registered by the FCA lies in the level of regulatory permissions granted to the financial entity. Authorized status indicates that the firm has undergone a more extensive review process and has broader regulatory permissions to conduct regulated activities. Registered status, on the other hand, typically applies to firms with more limited permissions or specific exemptions within the scope of FCA regulation.
ESMA stands for the European Securities and Markets Authority. It is an independent EU authority that aims to enhance investor protection and promote stable and orderly financial markets. For forex traders, ESMA's regulations have had significant implications, including restrictions on leverage, measures to standardize investor protection across EU member states, and requirements for brokers to provide risk warnings and transparency in their offerings.
FCA-regulated brokers must meet higher standards and guarantee greater protections to clients than brokers regulated offshore, where the level of oversight is typically minimal. FCA-regulated brokers segregate client funds from company funds, provide negative balance protection and offer a compensation fund in the event of insolvency.
Yes, as a British resident, you have the option to trade with a broker regulated outside the United Kingdom. However, it is important to be cautious and conduct thorough research when choosing an offshore-regulated broker. Trading with an offshore-regulated broker may offer different levels of regulatory protections and consumer rights compared to trading with a broker regulated by the FCA.
We concluded that Tickmillis the best forex and CFD broker for beginners, thanks to intuitive Tickmill mobile app, low minimum deposit, reliable customer support, and extensive research and education content.
We rate CMC Markets as the best forex and CFD broker for professional traders due to its professional-grade tools, tight spreads, and advanced research materials.
We judge FxPro to be the best forex and CFD trading platform, as a result of its innovative features and easy-to-use design.
Traders classified as professionals can trade cryptocurrencies with FCA-regulated brokers, but retail traders cannot.
Negative balance protection is a feature offered by some brokers that protect traders from incurring a negative account balance. In forex trading, it is possible to lose more money than you have in your account due to leverage, which magnifies gains and losses. With negative balance protection, the broker guarantees that the trader's account balance will never go below zero, even in the event of a sudden and significant market move that results in a large loss. If the trader's account balance falls to zero, the broker will close out their positions and absorb the loss, rather than requiring the trader to cover the negative balance.
To verify whether your broker has negative balance protection, you can review the terms and conditions of your account agreement, which should outline the broker's policy on negative balance protection. This information is usually available on the
A compensation scheme is a type of investor protection program that provides financial compensation to investors who have suffered losses as a result of a broker's insolvency, fraud, or other misconduct. Compensation schemes are designed to protect investors from financial harm and to promote confidence in the financial markets. In most countries, compensation schemes are established and regulated by the government or financial regulatory agencies. These schemes typically have specific eligibility requirements, such as a maximum level of compensation per investor or per claim, and may only cover certain types of financial instruments or transactions.
To verify whether your broker is a member of a compensation scheme, you can check their regulatory status and the terms and conditions of your account agreement. Compensation schemes are typically established and regulated by government or financial regulatory agencies, and brokers are required to be registered with these schemes to offer protection to their clients. You can also check the website of the compensation scheme in your country or region to see if your broker is listed as a member.
A segregated fund refers to the practice where brokers hold their clients' funds separate from their own operational funds. This is done to protect clients' funds in the event of the broker's bankruptcy or other financial difficulties.
To verify if a broker offers segregated funds, you can check their website, contact them directly, review their regulatory filings, look for independent reviews, or consult with a financial advisor.

About the Author

Dan BlystoneBroker Analyst

Dan Blystone began his career in the trading industry in 1998 on the floor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. Later Dan gained insight into the forex industry during his time as a Series 3 licenced futures and forex broker. He also traded at a couple of different prop trading firms in Chicago. Dan is well-equipped to recommend the best forex brokers due to his extensive experience and understanding of the brokerage industry.

Why you can trust FX Empire

At FXEmpire, we strive to provide unbiased, thorough and accurate broker reviews by industry experts to help our users make smarter financial decisions.

Why you can trust FX Empire

FXEmpire was founded in 2011, making us one of the first forex broker review sites. You can trust FXEmpire because of our thorough and unbiased review process. With over a decade of experience, we have a team of industry experts who conduct rigorous tests to ensure our reviews are accurate and unbiased. Our reviews are designed to bring clarity and confidence to the process of choosing a broker, and are based on objective criteria and measurable data. Our editorial team is composed of trading industry professionals and seasoned financial journalists, who ensure that our reviews are accurate and unbiased. Additionally, our review system is based on 9 core categories and over 250 distinct variables, which ensures that all aspects of a broker are considered before giving a final rating. So, you can trust FXEmpire to provide you with honest and informative reviews that will help you make an informed decision on which broker will best enable you to reach your financial goals.