Contributor, Benzinga
May 2, 2022
verified by Jay and Julie Hawk

Want to jump straight to the answer? The best forex broker for most people is definitely FOREX.com or CedarFX.

Forex trading is arguably one of the easiest financial markets to begin trading in. To get started, you just need to open and fund an account with a regulated online broker. Choosing the best forex broker to trade forex does require some initial research to find the one most suitable for your trading needs and experience level.

Best Forex Brokers:

The Best Forex Brokers

Benzinga’s picks for the best forex brokers in 6 key categories appear below along with details about each broker and a screenshot of their trading platforms. As you read through your options, remember that the majority of forex brokers can help you open a basic account and begin your investing journey. With these 6 brokerage houses, you are choosing based on the services and extras they provide above and beyond what a traditional broker would do.

1. FOREX.com

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FOREX.com is a subsidiary of StoneX (NASDAQ: SNEX)  and ranks as the best overall forex broker.

This broker accepts U.S. clients and is regulated in the U.S. by the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the National Futures Association (NFA). FOREX.com also has oversight from regulators in 6 major world jurisdictions through its subsidiaries.

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2. CedarFX

CedarFX believes in combining the finest market conditions with excellent pricing and technology so clients can grow their accounts. A low spread generally indicates that volatility is low and liquidity is high and CedarFX prides itself

CedarFX offers 2 account types: 0% commission accounts and eco accounts.

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    Investors interested in 0% commission or eco conscious trading
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3. IG Markets

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IG Markets gives clients access to trade up to 80 different currency pairs. The broker requires a $250 minimum deposit.

IG accepts U.S.-based clients due to oversight from the CFTC and NFA. IG holds your money in segregated accounts under trustee arrangements for added security. In addition to its proprietary trading platform, IG offers support for 3rd-party forex platforms such as MetaTrader 4 and ProRealTime. It also allows application programming interface (API) trading.

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4. SimpleFX

SimpleFX is available globally with some exceptions. The platform is available through WebTrader, MetaTrader 4, as well as native mobile apps for Android, iPhone, and HarmonyOS (Huawei).

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5. Saxo Bank

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Saxo Bank, in addition to offering its bread-and-butter stock, bond, ETF, mutual funds trading, provides a high-level platform to trade its leveraged products like forex, CFDs, futures, commodities, forex options, listed options and other derivatives. 

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6. Interactive Brokers

Interactive Brokers offers some of the lowest costs in the business, including a $0 commission on U.S.-listed stocks and exchange-traded funds (ETFs). Because of Interactive’s world-class brokerage services in 33 countries that cover 134 markets worldwide, the company has oversight from most of the world’s largest financial regulators, including the U.S. SEC, CFTC and NFA. Interactive also submits to regulatory oversight in the U.K., Australia and Canada, and it has agencies in Japan, Hong Kong, India and Luxembourg. 

  • IBKR International
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    Sophisticated Investors
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7. (Non US) eToro

eToro specializes in social trading, which is ideal for beginners since you can follow the trades of expert traders with a proven track record. In addition to its world-class social trading network, eToro has excellent educational resources for forex beginners. eToro’s intuitive multi-asset trading and social trading platforms and apps can be used by anyone immediately. Unfortunately, eToro does not support the MetaTrader 4 and 5 (MT4 and MT5) trading platforms. 

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8. (Non US) AvaTrade

AvaTrade, one of the most secure brokers in the industry, carries 7 regulations across 6 continents (Europe, Australia, Japan, British Virgin Islands, UAE and South Africa). You’ll be pleasantly surprised by its asset availability, leading platforms and generous trading conditions (you can leverage your positions up to 400:1).

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9. (Non US) FXCC

FXCC is the best brokerage for non-U.S. users, allowing you to choose from 70 currency pairs, several CFD options, spot metals and the top 8 cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin are just a taste of the popular cryptocurrencies that are available. You might also invest in 12 popular stock indices, spot WTI and Brent crude oil.

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10. FXTM

Established in 2011, FXTM can support your online trading, no matter your financial ambitions.

It specializes in leveraged trading to give you the potential to generate financial returns on both rising and falling prices across FX, indices, commodities, shares and cryptocurrencies. Whether you’re an experienced trader or completely new to it, FXTM wants to help you find freedom in the financial markets.

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11. Pepperstone

Investing with Pepperstone makes it easy for you to invest in a range of options like:

  • Forex
  • CFDs
  • Stocks
  • Crypto

The platform offers 24/7 customer service and the option to use MetaTrader or cTrader. Looking into foreign currency pairings makes it easier to protect yourself against losses and market fluctuations. You can learn as much as you need through Pepperstone’s educational platform, and you can build a diverse portfolio that will help you increase your net worth and build wealth.

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What is a Forex Broker?

Retail forex brokers are financial institutions that act as an intermediary between individual trader clients and the forex market. These forex brokers have an online presence in the form of an official website, and they target smaller traders who wish to operate in the forex market on a margin basis. 

Online forex brokers generally allow traders to execute forex deals largely using their supported electronic trading platforms. In addition to offering their own proprietary trading software, many online forex brokers support popular 3rd party forex trading platforms like MetaTrader 4 and 5 (MT4/5) from MetaQuotes.

Some forex brokers also offer very useful educational information for beginners you can use to increase your knowledge about trading. They might also provide access to expert forex market analysis and financial news feeds to help you make better trading decisions.

If you choose a forex broker that uses automation, you can try trading bots. These bots are AI-enabled programs that use prevailing information to trade on your behalf, and each bot uses a specific trading plan that is designed to help increase your earnings. However, trading bots are not perfect. You must do your research, set a budget and monitor your account for best results.

Why Trade Forex

Making a forex transaction involves the simultaneous purchase of 1 currency and the sale of another at a given rate of exchange known as an exchange rate. Forex traders make a profit by buying 1 currency pair low and selling it high, or by selling 1 currency pair high and buying it low.

Many people like to trade forex because they can get started so easily by opening up a trading account and downloading a free trading platform like MetaTrader. You can get in and out of positions rather quickly, easily trade a your pace and make money. This is often the place where investors start because they can get a handle on the market without feeling confusion over the asset they’re trading.

Forex Pros and Cons

The forex market has a unique set of pros and cons for traders that include those listed below.

Pros

  • High leverage: Because an exchange of currencies at the going market rate has no net value, the use of leverage in forex trading allows you to control quite large positions with a rather small margin deposit. This increases your risk but also lets you benefit from relatively small exchange rate movements. 
  • High liquidity: The forex market is the largest financial market in the world, so it has a very high level of liquidity in the major currency pairs. This allows for sizable transactions to be executed in those pairs at virtually any time during normal trading hours. 
  • Around-the-clock trading: The forex market remains open for trading at all times from 5 p.m. EST on Sunday until 5 p.m. EST on Friday, even during U.S. holidays. This provides constant trading opportunities during market hours. 

Cons

  • Fewer asset choices: While many stocks can be traded, only a relatively few currency pairs are available to forex traders, and not all of them are highly liquid like the majors.
  • Volatility: Strong movements can occur in the forex market as new information is digested by participants. This volatility can result in unexpected gains or losses for traders. 
  • Unregulated OTC market: The Interbank forex market trades over the counter (OTC) and so it remains largely unregulated. Still, some regulations are put in place in many jurisdictions to protect retail traders making transactions through online brokers. 

Forex Markets Explained

In the forex market, traders agree to exchange 1 currency for another to make a transaction in that currency pair at a particular level known as the exchange rate. Like stock prices, this exchange rate fluctuates based on supply and demand factors, as well as on the forex market’s overall expectations of future events. 

Forex traders can make money on a currency transaction in 2 ways. First, if they buy or go long a currency and it goes up in value versus the sold currency, then they earn a profit. Second, if they sell or go short a currency and it goes down versus the bought currency, then they also profit. 

Many currency pairs quoted in the forex market show substantial volatility or fluctuations, which can result in gains or losses for traders. You can review the EUR/USD pairing over the past week, month, year or more. Seeing the history of the pairing gives you quite a bit of information, and you can compare the stock’s movements to current events in either the U.S. or European Union.

During the comparison process, you may notice that the pairing moves inverse to the news you’re reading. As you read further, you learn how to anticipate where currencies will move based on current events.

Risk and Reward in Forex Trading

Rewards are generated in forex trading when you take a long or short position in a currency pair that subsequently appreciates in value. The risk in doing a forex transaction is when the market doesn’t perform as expected once you have done a forex trade. 

Many brokers allow traders to magnify the gains or losses they take on a position via the use of leverage. Leverage is typically expressed as the ratio of the size of a position you can control by placing one unit of base currency on deposit as margin. Hence, a 500:1 leverage ratio would mean that you can control a $500 position with a $1 margin deposit. 

Furthermore, most successful traders have a minimum risk/reward ratio for a trade before they will consider taking it, such as 1:2 or 1:3. For example, if you think the chances of a trade making 20 pips is around the same as the chances of it losing 10 pips, then your risk/reward ratio of that trade is 1:2. If that meets your risk/reward ratio criteria, then you might consider that trade worthy of executing. 

Choose Your Broker Wisely

Since your forex broker will be your primary trading partner, you want to choose one carefully to make sure they are reputable and will fit your requirements as a trader. Open a demo account with an online broker you’re thinking of using to see whether it is a good fit. Demo account trading can also help prevent potentially costly errors that might arise from you being unfamiliar with the broker’s trading platform. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q
Can I trade forex with $10?
A
Yes, some online forex brokers will accept clients with a very low minimum deposit like $10 or even less.
Q
What is a PIP?
A
An acronym for "percentage in point", a pip is the traditional smallest change in a currency pair’s exchange rate. For most currency pairs, a movement of 1 pip is a 0.0001 change.
Q
Can I trade forex without a broker?
A
Yes, you can trade in the over the counter (OTC) forex market with major financial institutions using credit lines if you are a high net worth individual or corporation, and you can even perform rudimentary forex trading via local cambios. If you’re a retail trader with a modest amount of risk capital to use as margin, you’ll need an online forex broker to trade currency pairs through.

Methodology

These top brokers were chosen for this review for various reasons depending on the specific category in which we felt they excelled. Baseline requirements included the strength of their regulatory environment, their generally good overall reputation with clients earned over an extended period and a substantial number of currency pairs available for trading. 

Get a Forex Pro on Your Side

FOREX.com, registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), lets you trade a wide range of forex markets plus spot metals with low pricing and fast, quality execution on every trade. 

You can also tap into:

  • EUR/USD as low as 0.2 with fixed $5 commissions per 100,000
  • Powerful, purpose-built currency trading platforms
  • Monthly cash rebates of up to $9 per million dollars traded with FOREX.com’s Active Trader Program

Learn more about FOREX.com’s low pricing and how you can get started trading with FOREX.com.