Review (2020): A Leading Forex Platform, But is it Worth the Cost? Review

Forex .com is a leading forex broker with advanced platforms, good mobile trading, and comprehensive and insightful research offerings, but with higher spreads than competitors, and accounts that benefit high-volume trades, the broker is most suited to active, high-volume traders.

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Forex .com offers transparent pricing that varies depending on your account. The broker caters mostly to active and high-volume traders, and offers a couple of advanced platforms to suit different activity levels. Traders will have the option to choose between several account types, and over 80 currency pairs, in addition to gold and silver.

• Account Minimum: $50 of your selected base currency
• Demo Account: Yes
• Best for: Really active traders
• Asset coverage: CFDs and Forex
• Regulation: Fully regulated

Investor Warning: Please note that foreign exchange and other leveraged trading involves significant risk of loss. It is not suitable for all investors and you should make sure you understand the risks involved, seeking independent advice if necessary.

Forex .com was launched in 2001 and is part of its parent company GAIN Capital Holdings, along with its sister company City Index.

Today, Forex .com is one of the leading forex brokers in the US and globally, with $1.288 billion in total assets as per the company’s GCAP key financial data in Q3 2019, and a total customer equity of $849 million.

The company oversees over 140,000 retail traders across the globe, from the US, UK, and Canada to Japan and Australia, with the tools needed traders advance in the financial markets.

Overview and Summary

  1. Forex .com was launched in 2001 and is part of its parent company GAIN Capital Holdings, a company launched in 1999, along with its sister company City Index.
  2. It is considered a safe company and is regulated by four tier 1 regulators, zero tier-2 regulators and one tier-3 regulator in the following countries: U.S, U.K, Australia, Canada, Japan, Singapore, and the Cayman Islands.
  3. Its fees are competitive overall and the broker generates most of its revenue from spreads.
  4. The online broker offers a suite of fast trading platforms to help traders of all levels succeed, including advanced trading, web-based trading, a trading app for those who never want to miss a move, and MetaTrader4 (MT4)
  5. Research is one of Forex .com’s strong-points and users can access very centralised, organised, and up-to-date material on everything from Brexit analysis to forex webinars for beginners.
  6. The customer support is easily accessible and overall pretty standard in comparison to other brokers
  7. Most clients will choose between a standard account and a commission account, both of which offer a margin of 200:1.


  • Excellent desktop and mobile functions
  • Considered safe and highly regulated
  • Account options benefit high traders


  • Spreads are higher than other international brokers
  • No negative balance protection offered
  • U.S traders cannot trade cryptocurrencies but it is allowed in other countries, like the U.K

Is Forex .com Safe?

Forex .com is considered a safe company and is regulated by four tier-1 regulators, zero tier-2 regulators, and one tier-3 regulator in the following countries: U.S, U.K, Australia, Canada, Japan, Singapore, and the Cayman Islands.

The company offers varying products from country to country, as laws vary. For example, CFDs are illegal in the U.S therefore the company does not offer CFDs to U.S traders, but it does offer CFDs to traders outside of the U.S.

Forex .com maintains level capital well above what’s required by the regulator to help ensure it is capitalized in times of economic uncertainty.

In addition, the broker has a global liquidity plan in place that provides access to significant resources from the GAIN group, and an external revolving credit facility.

With this, Forex .com keeps all customers funds segregated from its own operating funds, which further helps to protect traders money in the event of any financial issues with the company.

There is no negative balance protection offered by the company. The company does automatically monitor client’s accounts and if there is not enough margin in an account, the firm will automatically liquidate positions.

However, this isn’t a fail safe way of preventing negative balances, and you will be left more open to the risk.

Fees & Spreads

Forex .com generates revenue mostly from its spreads. Customers signing up to Forex .com will have two pricing options based on the account you choose. The standard account uses spread-based pricing, and doesn’t charge commissions.

But spreads can be larger, starting from around 1-2 pips for the most popular assets and increasing higher than 100 on less in demand currency pairs. That said, all spreads are variable, meaning they can go up or down at any time.

Screenshot of Product Spread

The Direct Market Access (DMA) account is recommended for traders with a balance of $25,000 and a really high trade volume. This account doesn’t mark up spreads, but is commission based and is only available to traders in the U.S.

The commission account meets both of these in the middle and is suitable for higher volume traders with a focus on spreads. It offers low spreads, and charges $5 commission per 100k of trades.

Fees and commissions are not Forex .com’s strong-points in comparison to other brokers, as its spreads and commissions are a bit high, especially for those with smaller accounts.

Traders can benefit from joining the Active Trader program, and is available to those with $25,000 or more in an account or those making $25 million trades per month.

This account will give you interest on available margins up to 1.5% APY and as much as $9 in cash rebates per $1 million trades.

Traders with a DMA account cannot avail of the Active Trader program however, because it already offers fee reductions based on volume.


The leverage offered depends on your account type and activity. Forex .com offers a margin calculator on their site to help you figure out how much leverage you can get.

EU traders will be offered a stricter leverage due to new EU regulations introduced in 2019. Professional traders can operate with higher levels of leverage however.

Other Fees

Traders with less than $10,000 in an account who have not traded in 12 months or more can be charged a $15 in activity fee per month. If you have over $10,000 in your account you will be exempt from inactivity fees. does not charge additional fees for deposits. There is also no charge for withdrawals and checks. Wire transfers over $10,000 are free, but anything under this incur a fee: U.S wire transfer will incur a fee of $25, and all transfers outside of the U.S will be charged $40.

Overall, Forex .com’s pricing is transparent and easy to understand, and offers traders of different levels accounts.

What Forex .com Does Best

Trading Platforms

Forex .com offers a suite of fast trading platforms to help traders of all levels succeed, including advanced trading, web-based trading, a trading app, for those who never want to miss a move, and MetaTrader4 (MT4)

The firm’s platforms are perfect for active traders and long term traders looking to get the most out of their experience. They are all created for ease of use and to help you get to where you need to go.

The advanced platform offers traders sophisticated features and analytical tools including;

  • Fully customizable dashboards and trading preferences
  • Great charting tools, over 80 technical indicators, and lots of drawing tools
  • Advanced analytical tools to help you create complex strategies using one of their templates

The Web Platform

Screenshot of Web Trading Platform Homepage

The web platform will give traders access to calendars, charts, and a news feed, as well as allowing you to see clearly your trade history, and positions. You’ll also get access to expert analysis reports, research reports, and trade signals to help you strategize with the best and up to date market information.

The web platform is well equipped with functions, tools, analytics, and seamless account management for funding and withdrawing from your account, and everything you need to make a quick trade when you need to.

With that, traders can integrate their Forex .com account with NinjaTrader, a third-party trading platform loved by many.

Forex .com Mobile

Screenshot of mobile platform page

Forex .com’s app is fast, advanced and clear. It enables traders to make trades on the move, because as the firm says, “when you’re on the move so are the markets.”

The mobile app is a good alternative to the web platform and while using it you’ll enjoy; its  full-featured trading and advanced risk management options, TradingView charting & analysis tools, real-time trade and order alerts, and integrated fund management options.

Overall this is a fairly impressive app but a downside to it has to be its charting features. Unlike the web trader that offers over 70 technical indicators, the app only offers a limited number, which include MACD and RSI. It also lacks the drawing tools and technical tools that can make things a bit more exciting and are stand-out features of the web platform

The app does have full order functions, like the ability to place conditional orders, and easily make stop losses and profit targets during a trade.

Where the Platform Could Improve

The order window is too basic in some ways and is missing some of the more advanced features, like the ability to add a take-profit to a pending order, and a Good-till-Date parameter.


Unlike Oanda, whose research is a bit scattered and difficult to locate, Forex .com is all very centralised and organised for ease of use.

Users can access the latest research, news from several channels, real-time trading signals and analysis tools from Autochartist. You can also benefit from its automated pattern-recognition modules from Trading Central, and a frequently updated and informative blog.

Perhaps most interestingly, traders will be able to quickly and easily stay on top of popular market events with great insights and analysis on how certain affairs may be affecting the market; such as Brexit, and US-China Trade War.

Screenshot of Education and Research PageThe team also streams live weekly webinars on topics including, The Foundations of Forex Trading. This webinar brings traders through a wide range of useful topics from week to week to help identify opportunities and manage risk, learn the difference between trading and intraday trading, and money management techniques 101, to name a few.

If you’re a beginner then Forex .com might help you build the bank of information you need to get to the next level.

Furthermore, traders can look into upgrading to a premium package with trading signals from Faraday research. This will cost you a fee of £720 for a yearly subscription that might be worth it depending on your needs.

Where Forex .com Could Do Better

Customer Support

You can contact Forex .com’s customer service pretty quickly and easily through their online chat, or phone support. Support is available from 10 a.m. ET Sunday to 5 p.m. ET Friday.

And if you have a slightly more generic question, that you think others may have already asked, you can visit Forex .com’s detailed FAQs section, or perhaps one of their video tutorials will answer your question.

There is no social media support though, which is a bit behind the times considering they do have social media accounts that they update with things like the latest market analysis.

The chat is just a chat bot, so it offers a limited range of answers. This means that it won’t be able to help you out with any complex questions or issues you may have, and you’ll need to email support; but email support is quite slow, and you could be waiting up to three business days for a response, which is a bit ridiculous.

Your quickest and best option is phone support for more detailed questions, but this can also be a little slow during peak market hours.

Overall, the support Forex .com provides is pretty standard in comparison with other brokers support offerings.

Investment Products

Forex pairs are limited to 83 for U.S traders, as well as underleveraged gold and silver. Anyone outside of the U.S will have access to all forex pairs, in addition to CFDs on stocks, commodities, and indexes.

Traders in the U.K can go ahead and trade the ever unsettled cryptocurrency; South Korea recently announced that it would work towards institutional acceptance of cryptocurrencies, while at the same time people have began reporting that YouTube is deleting videos on cryptocurrencies. 

Minimum Balance

Traders can open an account with 50 of their finest units of the account currency.

There is a minimum trade on currency of $1,000, which means that if you make an initial deposit of $100, you will need a leverage of 10:1 to meet the minimum trade required. A high leverage will also increase your risks significantly.

Account Types

Screenshot of Education and Research PageWe went through this a bit in the fees section, but let’s get into a little more detail on your account options.

Most clients will choose between two accounts, a standard account and a commission account.

The requirements are the same for both of these but one uses Forex .com’s proprietary trading platform and the other offers MT4 software. Both accounts offer a margin of 200:1.

However, the MT4 account does not offer shares, and has fewer commodities. It also offers fewer order types and less ability to set user-defined price tolerance.

Standard Account

This is best for the average use and new foreign currency traders. It is a spread-based with spreads that are higher than some competitors, but charges no commissions.

Commission Account

This account is more suitable for really active and experienced traders. It is, as the name suggests, commission-based, and you will be offered lower spreads.

Direct Market Access Account

A direct market access account is for high-volume traders who have a minimum of $25,000. It offers lower spreads and requires higher volume trades to take advantage of really low commissions, after rebates.

Active Trader Account

This is a great account if you’re generating a significant amount of trading volume. It offers reductions on standard spreads. For example, the EUR/USD pair can be traded for as low as 0.4.

Demo Account

Traders can practice their trading on Forex .com’s practice account that’s available on the trading platform, or on a demo account that’s available on MT4; both of which are good options. Users will receive a cool $50,000 in virtual cash with your demo account that should be enough to get some good practice in.

How to Open an Account with Forex .com

To open a Forex .com online account, just go to the broker’s account section and click on your preferred account option to get started with the application process.

The Bottom Line

Forex .com is a top forex broker with a lot to offer. Active traders with high-volume trades will benefit the most from Forex .com but others, including beginners will reap the benefits from the firm’s organised and up-to-date market analysis and live webinars.

Forex .com’s platforms are excellent across the board and will enable traders to excel with their advanced tools and functions.

The mobile experience is almost as good as the web-platform, bar some limitations, like offering less technical indicators.

Fees vary depending on your account option but standard accounts charge spread-based fees that are higher than competitors.

U.S traders are offered 83 investment products, and their assets are limited to mainly foreign currencies. U.S traders also do not have the option of trading crypto-currencies.

As a whole, experienced traders with a high trading-volume should consider Forex .com as a valuable option.

About Author

Tim Fries Tim Fries is the cofounder of The Tokenist. He has a B. Sc. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan, and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Tim is also the co-founder of Protective Technologies Capital (