AuthorBy Chris CammackAuthor InformationUpdated: October 29, 2020

The retail Forex CFD market is a complex space, and the brokers that work within it have different business models, but most of them are known as market maker brokers. The key identifying factor of a market maker broker is that they will take the exposure from any trade on to their own books, i.e. they will use their own liquidity to be the counterparty to your trade.

Some traders are wary of Market Makers because they believe there is an inherent conflict of interest in this business model (trader loses, broker wins and vice versa), but the truth is that they are an integral part of the Forex market, providing essential liquidity and access to a market that would otherwise be out of reach for all but the large institutional traders, such as banks and hedge funds.

It’s also important to note that market makers very rarely set their own prices – that is, they are not true market makers – because their pricing is usually at the mercy of their liquidity partners, who would have already set a price on the interbank market.

We will discuss how market makers operate in detail below, but for now, it is enough to know that well-regulated market makers offer a fair and transparent trading environment for retail traders.

Best Market Maker Broker

  • MarketsX - Most Trusted Broker
  • FxPro - Best Trading Conditions
  • XTB - Most Assets Available
  • XM - Best Trading Platforms
  • easyMarkets - Best Customer Service
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These are the best Market Maker Brokers for 2020

Last updated on 29 Oct 2020
Updated 29 Oct 2020
by Editorial Director Chris Cammackby Chris Cammack
Chris Cammack
All Brokers Regulated
All Brokers Regulated
by Trusted Authoritiesby Trusted Authorities
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1
MarketsX
Min. Deposit
GBP 250
4.394.39
Trading Cost
GBP 6
Min. Spread
0.6 pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.39/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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Marketsx is a premium trading platform. It’s operated by Markets.com and offers traders fast, low-cost trading on over 2,200 financial instruments. Marketsx provides CFD trading on global stock, forex, commodity, indices, cryptocurrency, ETF and bond markets. Clients in the UK can also use spread bets on applicable instruments.

The proprietary Marketx trading platform is packed full of features and trading tools and is optimised for lightning execution. As well as in-depth charting and asset comparison tools, Marketsx also gives traders a wealth of decision-supporting data with sentiment tools, tutorials, and regular live-streamed, expert analysis.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Tight spreads
  • Wide range of assets
  • Fast and free withdrawals
Cons
  • High minimum deposit
Read More About MarketsX
2
FxPro
Min. Deposit
GBP 100
4.214.21
Trading Cost
GBP 15
Min. Spread
0.6 pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.21/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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One of the most respected Forex brokers in the industry, well regulated by the FCA and CySEC, and with over 870,000 client accounts in 173 countries. FxPro is a powerhouse in the industry and very well respected among traditional brokers.

With MT4, MT5, cTrader and a browser-based platform, a reasonable 100 USD opening deposit and outstanding customer service, FxPro also offers competitive spreads – often as low as 0.6 pips – to match profitability with security.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Great platform choice
  • Tight spreads
Cons
  • Limited education
Read More About FxPro
3
XTB
Min. Deposit
GBP 5
4.384.38
Trading Cost
GBP 8
Min. Spread
0.1 pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.38/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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Well-regulated, safe and award-winning, XTB is a true leader in the Forex trading industry.

Joining other leading ECN/STP brokers with unbeatable trading conditions, excellent trader education and rock-solid analysis, XTB has also developed an award-winning proprietary trading platform that goes beyond MT4 to offer clients easy-to-use functionality with fast execution speeds.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Tight spreads
  • Low minimum deposit
  • Good for beginners
Cons
  • Limited platform choice
Read More About XTB
4
XM
Min. Deposit
GBP 5
4.384.38
Trading Cost
GBP 16
Min. Spread
0.6 pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.38/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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XM Group has achieved substantial growth since opening in 2009, earning 1.5 million clients in 196 countries. XM’s operational philosophy is aimed at client satisfaction and low client turnover; they earn client loyalty through award-winning 24/5 personal customer service, varied account types and competitive trading conditions.

Regulated the FCA, CySEC and ASIC and the recipient of many industry awards, XM Group stands out from a crowded field of market maker brokers for their customer service and educational support.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Excellent education
  • Wide range of assets
  • Fast and free withdrawals
Cons
  • Dealing desk
Read More About XM
5
easyMarkets
Min. Deposit
GBP 100
4.244.24
Trading Cost
GBP 10
Min. Spread
0.9 pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.24/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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Founded in 2001, easyMarkets has always innovated, introducing tools like negative balance protection and guaranteed stop-loss before anyone else. This innovation has continued with its unique easyTrade, Freeze Rate and dealCancellation tools, all intended to assist new traders and keep trading transparent and simple.

easyMarkets still provides the strong basic services expected from a broker while constantly innovating to meet the greater expectations of the client base.  With simple account types, a strong variety of platforms to support traders, and a 50% deposit bonus for new traders, easyMarkets is easy to recommend.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Wide range of assets
  • Innovative trading tools
Cons
  • Limited platform choice
  • Limited account options
Read More About easyMarkets
6
BDSwiss
Min. Deposit
GBP 100
4.224.22
Trading Cost
GBP 16
Min. Spread
1.0 pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.22/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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BDSwiss is a popular and well-regulated broker, based in Cyprus and founded in 2012. It offers a wide range of account types, including a new subscription-based Raw Spread Account, which features very tight spreads and no commission in return for a monthly payment.

MT4 and MT5 are both supported and educational and analytical material are both excellent. More experienced traders will also find a lot to like with the Black Account, including free AutoChartist and one-on-one support.

Overall, BDSwiss is a good choice for all traders and we are curious to see if the low-spread subscription model catches on.

Pros
  • Tight spreads
  • Good for beginners
  • Wide range of assets
Cons
  • Expensive withdrawals
  • Limited market analysis
Read More About BDSwiss
7
Exness
Min. Deposit
GBP 1
4.124.12
Trading Cost
GBP 7
Min. Spread
0.1 pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.12/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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Founded in 2008, Exness is a well-regulated broker with tight spreads and unlimited leverage on a specialist zero account.  With both market and instant execution methods and full support for both MT4 and MT5, there is little to find fault with here – including its well-publicised sponsorship of Real Madrid.

Exceptionally, customer service is available 24/7 and most traders will find something to like from the wide range of account types.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Tight spreads
  • Wide range of assets
  • 24/7 customer service
Cons
  • Limited education
  • Limited market analysis
  • Unavailable in Europe
Read More About Exness
8
CityIndex
Min. Deposit
GBP 50
4.184.18
Trading Cost
GBP 6
Min. Spread
0.7 pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.18/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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Founded in 1983, City Index is a traditional market maker now owned by the NYSE listed financial group, GAIN Capital. It has tight spreads and a varied platform choice, including MT4 and AT Pro; an advanced automated trading platform allowing for full customisation with powerful back-testing.

City Index’ education section is perfect at beginners who want to get up to speed quickly and customer service is open 24/5. Overall, a good market maker and competitive with traditional brokers of its size and type.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Wide range of assets
  • Excellent market analysis
Cons
  • Slow withdrawals
  • Limited demo account
  • Limited education
Read More About CityIndex
9
Amana Capital
Min. Deposit
GBP 200
4.054.05
Trading Cost
GBP 14
Min. Spread
0.1 pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.05/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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Amana Capital is a very well-regulated broker with a strong focus on new traders; beginners will find a helpful and well-structured education section and relatively tight spreads on its cheapest account – though trading conditions do improve substantially on the more expensive accounts.

We also like that both MT4 and MT5 are supported and that traders have free access to both AutoChartist and Trade Captain – two excellent third-party analysis applications. 

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Tight spreads
  • Great customer support
Cons
  • High minimum deposit
  • Limited education
Read More About Amana Capital
10
IronFX
Min. Deposit
GBP 100
4.194.19
Trading Cost
GBP 11
Min. Spread
0.0 pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.19/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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With a huge range of account types, a good micro account and over 80 tradeable currency pairs, IronFX has something for everyone. A globally recognised Forex broker with award-winning education and market analysis, IronFX has also recently introduced market execution accounts with ultra-low spreads.

For beginners who want to learn to trade on the MT4 platform, and experienced traders looking for strong international regulation, IronFX is an excellent choice in a broker.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Tight spreads
  • Wide range of assets
Cons
  • Expensive withdrawals
Read More About IronFX
11
HF Markets
Min. Deposit
GBP 100
4.034.03
Trading Cost
GBP 10
Min. Spread
0.0 pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.03/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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An ECN/STP broker regulated by multiple major authorities including the FCA and CySEC, HF Markets has built a reputation among traders for its stable, fair, secure and transparent trading environment. Excellent educational and analytical material is available for both visitors and clients, and customer service is world-class.

Listed as one the Top 100 Companies by World Finance Magazine and with an award for Business Excellence 2015 (World Confederation of Businesses), HF Markets is not just celebrated by their industry peers, but also by the financial industry as a whole.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Excellent market analysis
  • Copy trading accounts
Cons
  • Limited base currencies
Read More About HF Markets
12
FXCM
Min. Deposit
GBP 50
4.134.13
Trading Cost
GBP 13
Min. Spread
Variable pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.13/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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Founded in 1999, FXCM is an FCA-regulated market marker with tight spreads and support for the MT4 platform.

Though it has a strong focus on educating new traders, FXCM also offers innovative trading tools and a wide range of specialty platforms for experienced traders. Customer support is excellent and FXCM’s flagship platform, Trading Station, has won multiple awards for its intuitive layout and customisability. Traders will also benefit from FXCM’s enhanced execution model across all popular currency pairs and CFDs.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Great platform choice
  • Excellent education
  • Innovative trading tools
Cons
  • Limited demo account
Read More About FXCM
13
AvaTrade
Min. Deposit
GBP 100
4.184.18
Trading Cost
GBP 9
Min. Spread
0.9 pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.18/ 5
AlertAccepts UK Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.9 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 30:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & MT5 platforms supported. AvaTrade Group regulated by ASIC, FSCA, B.V.I FSC & FSA. 79% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.
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Good value, beginner-friendly and hugely respected all over the world, AvaTrade is one of the most reputable brokers in the industry. With support for the leading trading platforms and top-quality multilingual support, AvaTrade has built a brand on a solid reputation and continues to add to that reputation with the recent addition of AvaProtect – an automated loss-protection tool – to its product lineup.

AvaTrade offers trading in Forex, commodities, cryptocurrencies, exchange-traded funds, options, bonds, and equities and is a good choice for any type of forex trader ranging from beginners to scalpers and intraday traders to long-term traders.

Pros
  • Good for beginners
  • Well regulated
  • Low minimum deposit
Cons
  • Dealing desk
  • Limited education
Read More About AvaTrade
14
HYCM
Min. Deposit
GBP 100
3.893.89
Trading Cost
GBP 18
Min. Spread
0.2 pips
Trading Desk Type
1110.503.89/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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HYCM’s parent company has been involved in asset trading for over 40 years and its various subsidiaries are regulated by the FCA, CySEC and the DFIC. Primarily a market-maker broker, HYCM still offers attractive trading conditions, and has a market-execution account for those who prefer commission over wider spreads.  Support for both MT4 and MT5 is offered alongside a comprehensive market education suite that will be beneficial for all traders.

HYCM offers its clients an opportunity to trade on more than 300 financial instruments including a number of currency pairs, commodities, stocks and cryptocurrencies.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Wide range of assets
  • Good range of accounts
  • Fast and free withdrawals
Cons
  • Limited currency pairs
Read More About HYCM
15
Trade.com
Min. Deposit
GBP 100
3.503.50
Trading Cost
GBP 40
Min. Spread
1.8 pips
Trading Desk Type
1110.503.50/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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Trade.com is a multi-asset, market maker with MT4 support and a range of account types. Trading conditions are good, and the more expensive account types have very tight spreads. The Micro Account is excellent value and dedicated customer support is available for those with higher minimum deposits.

Regulated by CySEC and the FSCA, Trade.com has committed to a secure system for managing client funds and protecting the brokerage from illegal activity.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Wide range of assets
Cons
  • Limited education
  • Wide spreads
Read More About Trade.com
16
Plus500
Min. Deposit
GBP 100
3.693.69
Trading Cost
GBP 8
Min. Spread
Variable pips
Trading Desk Type
1110.503.69/ 5
AlertAll information presented is verified as of the date of the review.Most retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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With 50+ Forex CFD pairs available, tight spreads and fast execution, Plus500 is a popular broker with both its new and long-standing customers.  Even though a lot of effort has been put into creating a user-friendly platform, CFDs are complex financial products, and thus the platform is not suitable for inexperienced traders.

Award-winning customer service is available 24/7 and the Plus500 platform is web-based with no need for any downloads or setup, making this a good provider for those starting out who want to keep it simple. 

Plus500 has one account with a 100 USD minimum deposit requirement and keeps simplicity at the core of its business.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Wide range of assets
Cons
  • Limited education
  • Limited account options
Read More About Plus500
17
GKFX Prime
Min. Deposit
GBP 5
3.533.53
Trading Cost
GBP 18
Min. Spread
0.0 pips
Trading Desk Type
1110.503.53/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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GKFX Prime was founded by GKG, a Malta-based Fintech company, in 2012 and is regulated by the BVI’s Financial Services Committee. With, no required minimum deposit, a good range of account types – including fixed spread, variable spread and commission-based ECN – and a decent education section, GXFX Prime are a good choice for new traders.

A number of useful tools are also available, including AutoChartist and Trading Central – alongside ZuluTrade and Autotrade for those who prefer social trading – though support is only offered for MT4.

Pros
  • Innovative trading tools
  • Wide range of assets
  • Low minimum deposit
Cons
  • Expensive withdrawals
  • Limited education
Read More About GKFX Prime
18
IQ Option
Min. Deposit
GBP 10
3.593.59
Trading Cost
GBP 9
Min. Spread
0.9 pips
Trading Desk Type
1110.503.59/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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Regulated by major regulatory organisations including CySEC, IQ Option focuses on making CFD and Options trading accessible and exciting for traders. An award-winning browser-based platform and connected apps; this accessible software changed the way options trading is done online.

With accessible accounts with 10 USD minimum deposits, video education material, and 24/7 customer service, any Forex trader who is also interested in binary options trading on the same account, should consider IQ Option as their brokerage.

Pros
  • Low minimum deposit
  • Wide range of assets
Cons
  • Unpublished spreads
  • Expensive withdrawals
  • Limited education
  • Limited market analysis
Read More About IQ Option
19
eToro
Min. Deposit
GBP 200
3.333.33
Trading Cost
GBP 10
Min. Spread
1.0 pips
Trading Desk Type
1110.503.33/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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eToro pioneered social trading in 2012 and has been widely recognised for making the social trading experience as smooth and engaging as possible. It has since grown to become one of the largest Forex brokers in the world, and its success has made it clear that many traders view an active and helpful community as an essential part of their trading strategy.

eToro has won multiple awards for innovation, and as cryptocurrencies have become more popular, has introduced a wide variety of cryptocurrency CFDs to traders.

eToro’s trading model is quite different from most other brokers and may take some time to get accustomed to, but if you are looking for a fun and simple social trading experience, then eToro is the broker for you.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Good for beginners
  • Innovative trading tools
Cons
  • Limited education
  • Wide spreads
Read More About eToro
20
FXTM
Min. Deposit
GBP 10
4.234.23
Trading Cost
GBP 19
Min. Spread
0.1 pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.23/ 5
AlertAccepts UK Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.1 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage Flexible. Islamic account available. MT4 & MT5 platforms supported. FXTM Group regulated by CySEC, FCA, FSCA and FSC. 83% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.
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By keeping the focus on beginners looking for reasonable trading conditions, the FXTM team of educators and analysts have succeeded in creating a welcoming environment for new traders. Additionally, FXTM is one of the few brokers with 24/7 support, allowing new traders to get set up on weekends or holidays. 

All five FXTM accounts are available as demo accounts and, for the absolute beginner, FXTM has a great deal of training material to help new traders get started. Once you are ready to trade, the Standard Account has a minimum deposit of 100 USD and spreads start at 1.3 pips. FXTM also offers a Cent Account where the minimum deposit if only 10 USD but the spreads will be wider. 

Pros
  • Good for beginners
  • Excellent education
  • Well regulated
  • Low minimum deposit
Cons
  • Expensive withdrawals
Read More About FXTM
21
Trade360
Min. Deposit
GBP 500
3.243.24
Trading Cost
GBP 30
Min. Spread
1.8 pips
Trading Desk Type
1110.503.24/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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For a minimum deposit of 500 USD, you can try the innovative CrowdTrading trading platform built by Trade360. The CrowdTrading algorithm constantly examines Trade360 client activity, spots changes in price action and highlights these changes to help traders make better decisions.

A market-maker broker regulated by CySEC in Europe, Trade360 also lets clients try out this inventive new way to trade on a broad range of asset choices, not just Forex.

Pros
  • Good range of accounts
  • Wide range of assets
Cons
  • Wide spreads
  • Limited education
  • Limited market analysis
  • High minimum deposit
Read More About Trade360
22
CMC Markets
Min. Deposit
GBP 5
4.684.68
Trading Cost
GBP 7
Min. Spread
0.7 pips
Trading Desk Type
11110.54.68/ 5
AlertMost retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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CMC Markets is a large, well-respected and well-regulated market maker broker operating globally from headquarters in London. Spreads and leverage are better than most other market makers and the proprietary New Generation trading platform is well-crafted and recommended for experienced and beginner traders alike. A wide asset choice and responsive customer support are complemented by an excellent education section and deep and insightful market analysis.

If you are a new trader and want a large, respectable broker with an intuitive platform and a large education section, you will do much worse than CMC Markets.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Tight spreads
  • Good for beginners
  • Excellent education
  • Excellent market analysis
Cons
  • No swap-free account option
Read More About CMC Markets

The Forex Market and Market Makers

In order to better understand how and why market makers operate the way they do, we need to understand how the Forex market works.

The vast majority of Forex trading takes place in the interbank market, trillions of dollars in currencies move between the major banks in this market on a daily basis (6.6 trillion USD per day is the 2019 estimate). It is in this space where the market is made; the prices set here, between the members of the interbank market, will be the basis for pricing in the lower volume sections of the Forex market, including the retail CFD market.

It is fair to say that the primary market makers in the Forex market are the members of this interbank market. They effectively set the rules for everyone else to play by – including market maker CFD brokers.

How do Market Makers Work?

Like all Forex brokers, market makers will offer you a bid and an ask (buy and sell) price on currency pairs, this price will be mostly set by the pricing of the currency pair on the interbank market. As market makers will be taking exposure to the risk associated with the trade (i.e. will be counterparty to the trade) they will also charge a mark-up fee on both the buy and sell prices.

The difference between the buy and sell prices is called the spread and is how market makers make most of their money. Think about it as the fee charged by the broker for creating the liquidity needed to make your trade. Most market makers will also hedge the trades they take on with a member of the interbank market, thus protecting themselves from losses – this is especially true in cases of large volume retail trades.

Market makers may also make alterations to the pricing on pair based on other factors:

  • Current exposure – a broker’s risk management team may dictate changes in pricing if they believe they are holding too many trades in one direction on a pair
  • The dealing desk’s views on future price movement – if the broker believes the GBP is overpriced against the USD, this will affect the pricing offered
  • Volume – as mentioned above, market makers will protect themselves when taking large volume trades, so will often insist on wider spreads and less leverage in these cases.

Market Makers vs ECN Brokers

Market makers are distinct from the other form of retail Forex CFD brokers, known as ECN (Electronic Communication Network) brokers. Instead of making a market and exposing themselves to the trading risk of their clients, ECN brokers act as a middleman between the trader and the members of their networks. Rather than being the counterparty to trades, ECN brokers will match trades against the best available price from their network of possible counterparties.

Because ECN brokers take no risk exposure from the trade and sit at the centre of a web of ruthless supply and demand forces, spreads are generally very tight and trade execution speeds are often much quicker. But ECN brokers will charge commission on every trade they match – making them an expensive proposition for smaller account sizes.

Should I Trade with a Market Maker?

As mentioned at the top, many traders are wary of working with market maker brokers, as they feel that there is an inherent conflict of interest in the business model. While it is true that a market maker will never quote prices that are going to damage their business, they will always have to offer a fair price – they cannot alter the pricing too much one way or the other before they open themselves up to arbitrage risk (the risk of traders making a profit by trading the discrepancies in pricing).

Furthermore, market makers in Europe, the UK and Australia will have strict requirements placed on them by regulators committing them to ensuring best execution of trades. Under this rule, it is illegal for market makers to skew trades to damage a client’s position.

If you are trading with a well-regulated market maker, the only real discussion to be had when considering trading through them or not is the style of broker you prefer. If you want tighter spreads and can afford commission on your trades, then an ECN broker may best – but for many retail Forex traders, this will be an unreasonable expense. It is also worth noting that many market maker brokers also offer very tight spreads and excellent all-round trading conditions.

How We Rate Market Maker Brokers

When we consider which market maker brokers are suitable for recommendation, we always look at the same factors. Each of these factors has the potential to radically alter your trading experience, and it is especially important for new traders to have trading conditions good enough to learn without being wiped out.

Regulation

Regulators ensure that market makers host a fair and transparent trading environment, all the while conducting strict auditing oversight and ensuring client fund protection. Brokers that are regulated by more than one major regulator are considered more trustworthy.

The major regulators are:

These international regulators are respected for their commitment to consumer protection, strong oversight and swift enforcement of sanctions on fraudulent brokers. They also all publish warning lists of unauthorised firms, so it is worth checking these before signing up with a broker:

FCA Warning List
ASIC Banned and Disqualified Register
CySEC Warnings

All market makers regulated by one or more of these regulators will be a fair and secure firm to do business with.

Trading Conditions

It is important to choose a market maker with the trading conditions that will support your trading strategy. Think about how much leverage you want to have available; keeping it low (100:1 or less) is a good idea if you are still learning how to trade. Also, consider what account currencies are supported by the broker and what currency pairs you want to trade, you do not want to be spending a fortune in conversion fees.

Other trading conditions to consider will be how tight the spreads are on the currency pairs you will want to trade, and what other assets are available that you may want to trade. Most Forex brokers will also offer CFD trading on commodities (such as oil, gas, etc.), precious metals (gold, silver, etc.), indices (FTSE, DAX, NYSE) and cryptocurrencies.

Account Types

Consider the different account types on offer at your broker, most market makers offer swap-free Islamic accounts, and all will offer demo accounts to practice with – the best demo accounts are unlimited and exactly simulate the real market.

Other popular account types are copy trading and social trading accounts. These will allow you to copy successful traders, who will then take a cut of your profits. A similar idea is the PAMM (Percentage Allocation Money Management) account, which is a pooled money operation, where the members of the money pool can choose what proportion of their account they want to allocate to a certain trader.

Trading Platforms

It is important to carefully choose a trading platform and find a broker that supports that platform. MetaTrader 4 (MT4) is a safe choice as it’s the industry standard and there is a multitude of online tutorials, though it is gradually being replaced with MetaTrader 5 – which has a more modern look and feel and has many features missing from MT4.

Market makers will not offer cTrader, as this is an ECN-only platform, but many will have their own in-house platforms, most of which are designed with new traders in mind so are easy to learn and have a more intuitive layout.

Broker Fees

We always check for additional broker fees that may be charged and so should you.

Market makers generally make their money from the spread, but some will also charge additional fees to further boost their profits. The most common charge is withdrawal fees, and it is good practice to always ask your broker if and how much they charge for withdrawing from your account. Generally, withdrawals fees are cheaper or non-existent when using online payment systems (such as Skrill) are used for funding your account.

We always highlight any extra fees charged by brokers in our reviews and will penalise brokers with extortionate fees.

Customer Service

Customer service is in your native language is important and many brokers offer full support in multiple languages. The best customer service will be available by live chat, email, messaging apps and over the phone. Many brokers will also offer a call-back service, so you do not have to make expensive international calls.

Good market makers offer customers support 24 hours a day, Monday-Friday and a rare few will also offer weekend service. If you are new to Forex trading you will want a broker with responsive technical support and customer support representatives with an in-depth knowledge of their products and platforms.

Education and Research

Forex education is especially important for new traders, many of the larger market maker brokers offer excellent structured Forex courses for beginners and a few will also have courses covering more advanced topics, like strategies and indicators. If you want to be a successful Forex trader you will never stop learning, so having a broker with excellent educational resources will essential.

Alongside educational support, a good broker will also have an in-house research team offering insightful market analysis on a daily, if not hourly, basis. Some market makers will leave market analysis to third-party companies such as Trading Central or TradingView – while these applications are both very useful, we find that brokers with their own analysis teams often provide better market research ideas and more useful information for new traders.

Final Word

Market makers are often unfairly blacklisted by many members of the Forex CFD trading community; the truth is that well-regulated market makers are an essential part of the Forex market. By committing themselves to be counterparty to any trade they provide much-needed stability, both in terms of liquidity and in terms of market function.

With the current regulations in place, it is also impossible for market makers to work against their clients – even if they wanted to ruin their reputation and open themselves up to arbitrage in this fashion.

It is worth noting that while well-regulated market makers are trusted members of the Forex market and essential for its function, there are many unregulated (or very poorly regulated) market makers that do not behave as ethically. Therefore, it is critical that you always trade with a market maker you trust – one that has a good track record and has oversight from a major regulator.

Forex Risk Disclaimer

Trading Forex and CFDs is not suitable for all investors as it carries a high degree of risk to your capital: 75-90% of retail investors lose money trading these products. 

Forex and CFD transactions involve high risk due to the following factors: Over-leveraging, unpredictable market volatility, slippage arising from a lack of liquidity, inadequate trading knowledge or experience, and a lack of regulatory protection for clients.

Traders should not deposit any money that is not disposable. Regardless of how much research you have done, or how confident you are in your trade, there is always a substantial risk of loss. (Learn more from the FCA or from ASIC)

Our Methodology

Our State of the Market Report and Broker Directory are the result of extensive research on over 100 Forex brokers. The explicit goal of these resources is to help traders find the best Forex brokers – and steer them away from the worst ones – with the benefit of accurate and up-to-date information.

With over 150 data points on each broker and over 3000 hours of research and review writing, we believe we have succeeded in our goal. 

In a world where trading conditions and customer support can vary based on where you live, our broker reviews focus on the local trader and give you information about these brokers from your perspective.

All research has been conducted by our in-house team of researchers and writers, gathering information from various company representatives, websites and by sifting through the fine print. Learn more about how we rank brokers

Resources

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Trading Forex and CFDs is not suitable for all investors and comes with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 75-90% of retail investors lose money trading these products. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

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