Australian Forex Broker 2020 Comparison

The top Australian forex brokers are ASIC regulated offering forex trading platforms from MetaTrader 4 to cTrader and ECN broker spreads from 0.0 pips. Australian forex traders should ensure their financial service needs are matched by the best forex broker CFDs offering from Bitcoin to currency pairs.

View the leading fx brokers in Australia below.

By Justin Grossbard / Updated: Saturday, January 18th, 2020

Australia Forex Brokers Background

Best 2020 Australian Forex Brokers

2020 Best Australian Forex Brokers

The best Australian forex broker regulated by ASIC across each forex trading category are:

  • Pepperstone – Overall Best Forex Broker In Australia
  • IC Markets – Lowest ECN Broker Spreads On EUR/USD
  • Plus500 – Best Beginner Forex Trading Platform
  • AxiTrader – Lowest Minimum Deposit
  • eToro – Best Social Trading Australia Platform
  • CMC Markets – Best CFD Broker And Stockbroker
  • IG Group – Most popular foreign exchange broker
  • City Index – Lowest cryptocurrency CFD costs

Broker Reviewed

PepperstoneIC MarketsEasyMarketsAxiTraderIG
Our Rating
Pepperstone Review IC Markets Review Review Of EasyMarkets AxiTrader review Review of IG Markets
Most Awarded Broker Best Spread Broker Ideal For Beginner Traders Good for MetaTrader 4 traders Useful risk management features

Regulations and Licenses

FeaturePepperstoneIC MarketsEasyMarketsAxiTraderIG
ASIC (Australia)


FeaturePepperstoneIC MarketsEasyMarketsAxiTraderIG
No Commission Account Spreads From (EUR/USD): 1.0 1.0 1.2 (VIP) 0.0 0.6
Commission Account Spreads From (EUR/USD): 0.0 0.0
Commission (per 100k traded side trip) AUD $3.50 USD $3.50
Minimum Deposit $200 USD $200 AUD $200 (Standard) $0 $0
Volume Commission Rebates
Has Islamic Account
No Inactivity Fees
Funding Methods 16 15 16 12 4
No Deposit/Withdrawal Fees

Markets and Instruments

FeaturePepperstoneIC MarketsEasyMarketsAxiTraderIG
Forex Currency Pairs CFDs 66+ 65+ 70+ 80+ 80+
Cryptocurrency CFDs 4+ 10+ 3+ 6+ 5+
Index CFDs 2+ 16+ 14+ 31+ 34+
Share CFDs 5+ 100+ 26+
Commodities CFD 4+ 19+ 12+ 28+ 38+
Retail Maximum Leverage 500:1 500:1 400:1 400:1 200:1
Professional Maximum Leverage 500:1 500:1 400:1 400:1 200:1

Trading Platforms + Tools

FeaturePepperstoneIC MarketsEasyMarketsAxiTraderIG
MetaTrader 4 (MT4)
MetaTrader 5 (MT5)
Proprietary Platform
Automatic / Robot Trading
MetaTrader 4 only
Social + Copy Trading
MetaTrader 4 onliy
Standard Stop Loss
Guaranteed Stop Loss Order
Guaranteed Negative Balance Protection ESMA regulated territories only ESMA regulated territories only
ESMA regulated territories only ESMA regulated territories only
Demo Account
Unique Feature 1 Smart Trader Tools ECN pricing DealCancellation / Freeze Rate MetaTrader 4 specialist Guaranteed stop loss orders
Unique Feature 2 Fast Execution Speed Range of fee free funding options Guaranteed Negative Balance Protection / Fixed Spreads Award winning customer service Choice of Platforms


Pepperstone Is The Best Forex Broker In Australia

A January 2020 comparison found that the Pepperstone Razor Trading Account offered the best value with the:

Pepperstones Forex Trading Platforms

Pepperstone offers Australians the choice of the two most popular fx trading platforms globally.

1) MetaTrader 4

MetaTrader FX Broker Australia PlatformThe MetaTrader 4 (MT4) forex trading platform is the most popular worldwide due to its ease of use, charting and the ability to execute trades easily. The tool speciality is currency trading either manually, with automation or copy trading facilities. MT4 features include:

  • Navigator & Market Watch Windows with 85 indicators
  • Unlimited chart configurations and analysis tools
  • The ability for automated trading (Expert Advisors)
MetaTrader 5 Logo2) MetaTrader 5

The MetaTrader 5 (MT5) platform is similar to MT4 but focuses more on CFD trading. For example, Pepperstone clients can trade Share CFDs with MT5 but not with MT4. It was built off MQL5 language with the main MT5 features including:

  • 6 types of pending orders (MT4 has 4 types)
  • Depth-of-Market (MOM) and economic calendar included
  • Fast multiple back-testing facilities

3) cTrader

cTrader FX Broker Australia PlatformPrimarily used by expert Australian forex traders, this fx trading platform is commonly used by day-traders. Expert strategies that utilise automation are executed for financial services with other features:

  • Detachable next-generation charting with level II pricing
  • Fast execution entry speeds to make quick trades online
  • Automated options through the cTrader dedicated platform

The forex platform comparison table below shows the functionality of these two platforms.

PlatformAccessibilityAdjustable Session TimesDepth Of Market FunctionalityHistorical Data AccessAlgorithmic TradingDetachable Charts
MetaTrader 4Windows
MetaTrader 5Windows
Advanced TraderWindows

Demo Accounts

All forex platforms offered by Pepperstone have a demo account. Each demo account is loaded with $50,000 of virtual funds to simulate forex markets. This demo account can be transitioned to a live account at any time. To learn more about these accounts view our demo page.

Platform Enhancements Made By Pepperstone

What makes Pepperstone exceed other Australian forex brokers is their smart trader tools. This is available to all traders who choose MetaTrader 4 as their forex trading platform and have a deposit of at least AUD 500.

Smart Forex Trading Platform Tools

The 10 smart trading applications shown below give Pepperstone MT4 trader the edge, helping trade smarter with detailed insights into currency and CFD markets. These tools assist forex trading with expert trade execution and management, advanced alarms, decision assistance as well as broadcast features providing market information to traders. These tools are designed for both those new to trading and the most experienced traders.

The ‘top 10’ Pepperstone smart trading tools designed for currency trading are:

  1. MT4 Alarm ManagerMT4 Alarm Manager
    This feature helps set up notification and alerts of events that may impact currency markets. This tool can be automated to send alerts via SMS or e-mail.
  2. MT4 ConnectMT4 Connect
    Get quick access to RSS news feeds, trading guides and an economic calendar through this centralised portal. The portal also allows trades to get access and fund their account.
  3. MT4 Correlation TraderMT4 Correlation Trader
    This tool shows the correlation of an asset vs other markets to provide insight into exposure to the market. This helps determine the position of open trades based on the correlation of those trades.
  4. MT4 Market ManagerMT4 Market Manager
    This compact tool helps traders get access to features without opening the MT4 program. This includes account information, the ability to make orders and advanced monitoring tools.
  5. MT4 Excel RTDMT4 Excel Real-Time Data (RTD)
    RTD is an excel tool that allows spreadsheets to be generated and analysed through a connection to MT4. Both price and account data can be accessed and VBA programming can build financial models.
  6. MT4 Trade terminalMT4 Trade Terminal
    Position analysis combined with fast trade execution combined with advanced stop-loss orders are features of this all-in-one application. This allows fast advanced trading for that on-the-go.
  7. MT4 Sentiment TradingMT4 Sentiment Trading
    This tool allows individual markets to be read through their sentiment rating. Historical sentiment features can also be viewed against market prices to further understand trading markets.
  8. MT4 Session MapMT4 Session Map
    This tool allows traders to view market sessions in real-time to see what markets are open when overlap occurs and events/news related to those markets. This can help identify peak liquidity in markets.
  9. Stealth OrdersMT4 Stealth Orders
    Using this trading feature, pending order trades can be hidden from the market. This means that rather than make a standard limit or stop order, only once the price is reached the trade is executed.
  10. MT4 Trade SimulatorMT4 Trade Simulator
    Get Profit and Loss results combined with analysis of forex trading strategies. A trader can simulate how this trade would have performed based on historical market data and can be manual or automated trades.

Overall, Pepperstone Offers The Best Forex Trading Platform Features

The combination of offering the two most popular forex trading platforms combined with the enhanced functionality of “smart trading tools” led to Pepperstone winning the category.

Pepperstone’s Execution Speeds

Pepperstone achieves up to 10x latency reduction and 12x improvements in Australia execution speeds when trading forex and CFD online due to:

1) Optic Fibre From Sydney To Wall Street

One of the key issues for Australian traders is the distance between the country and the trading hubs either in New York or London. Slow internet connections between continents mean that latency can be experienced when fx trading leading to ‘slippage’ which is the difference between the order made and the actual order received.

Pepperstone has overcome this issue by adopting infrastructure that offers a direct fibre optic cable from their Sydney data-centre to New York.

This has minimised the latency for Australian forex traders which is why advanced traders who make split-second decisions choose their ECN platform. This makes the platform perfect for traders that adopt both technical and fundamental analysis.

2) Edge Technology Including The Leading Servers

Optic fibre isn’t enough to ensure the fastest trades for an Australian forex trader as the server it connects to is just as important. To maximise server speeds Pepperstone partnered with Equinix which not only has one of the world’s best high-performance data-centre but is also less than 18 kilometres from Wall Street.

Edge technology also has created new tools for existing platforms such as MetaTrader such as ‘one-click-trading’ which ensures that as soon as a trade is made it goes straight to the market with no dealer or other external interference which may delay the trade.

Using MT4 or cTrader with the fastest infrastructure available for either platform and features to speed up trades led them to receive the maximum execution speed score of the forex brokers

Pepperstone’s ECN Broker Spreads And Fees

Pepperstone’s popularity is not solely due to their technology but their ECN currency trading environment. This is matched by IC Markets which also offer RAW ECN spread across their currency trading environments. The results are razor trading account spreads are one of the lowest.

It should be noted there are two accounts. The standard account has a larger spread determined by the forex broker and the market and is normally selected by beginner forex traders. The Razor is a market maker account with market-level spreads and a flat commission of $3.50. This Pepperstone review focused on this Razor ECN forex broker account. View our spreads page to learn more about spreads.

Pepperstone Standard vs Razor ECN Broker Accounts

Razor Is A Market Maker Account With No Dealer Intervention

It’s important to understand that Razor is a true ECN forex trading account. This is because Pepperstone allows traders to directly trade with liquidity pools making it a market maker with prices set by the market. The deep liquidity pools the account has access to are in New York for MetaTrader or London for cTrader. Overall, quotes come from up to 22 major banks and ECNs which allow during liquid periods spreads to be as low as 0.1 pips for AUD USD.

Australian Forex Broker Pepperstone Spreads

2) Their Price Improvement Technology (PPI)

PPI technology intelligently routes currency trading orders to detect liquidity hot-spots to ensure optimal pricing for Australian traders. In simple terms, when you place a trade and the market moves in your favour (between placing the trade and it’s execution) the PPI technology detects the movement and when possible, fills the order at the improved level. This does not involve re-quoting but rather the traders just receives the improved price.Forex Trading Australia PPI Technology

You can learn more about these accounts on the Pepperstone choosing account page There is also the option for CFD trading across 13 stock indices. There are no commissions on CFD trading and no dealing desk.

The Razor market maker account (ECN forex broker account) is recommended due market-based spreads and low commissions leading to lower brokerage costs. This account also provides the fastest execution speeds offered by the FX broker

Customer Service & Client Satisfaction Of Pepperstone

Pepperstone is a relatively new Australian forex broker compared to some global players but in Australia has quickly gained a dominant market share. They have a strong customer service team in Australia of individuals who actually trade themselves making them an excellent choice of intermediate to expert traders.

Forex Trading Australia Satisfaction AwardsThis was acknowledged in when Investment trends survey of 15,000 Australian forex traders ranked Pepperstone number 1 in:

  • Overall Client Satisfaction
  • Customer Service
  • Spreads
  • Execution Speeds

Pepperstone’s Australia customer support team is based out of Melbourne.  There can be the possibility of talking to an overseas customer support team during off-peak periods such as Friday night.

Pepperstone Australian Office Location

The main forms of customer support including:

1) Live Chat

Pepperstone uses the Zendesk live chat interface to communicate with customers. This is available during the same hours as the call centre team. Our team used Pepperstone’s live chat several times and found that we could engage with an agent within 5 minutes and the operator was helpful with in-depth knowledge. Overall, live chat was the fastest was to get the answer and assistance we needed when making this forex broker review.

2) Telephone

There is 24-hour support via a 1300 number (or an international number for traders outside of Australia). This is available from Monday through to Friday. There is also a telephone number for their Shanghai and Dallas office.

3) E-mail

Each Pepperstone call-centre location also has an e-mail contact. This is the slowest way to send enquiries and get a response but it’s useful for long enquiries that require attachments.

The award-winning customer service offered by Pepperstone is ideally suited for intermediate or advanced Australian forex traders. Those new to forex, on the other hand, may want to consider Plus500.

Cryptocurrency Trading With Pepperstone

Pepperstone’s forex platform allows CFD cryptocurrency trading with up to 5:1 leverage, fast execution speeds, no commissions and low spreads including the following:

Bitcoin TradingBitcoin

The most popular cryptocurrency in 2020, this blockchain technology allows diversification from traditional financial markets. The market capitalisation in 2020 is over $65 billion USD and has become one of the most traded elements on the markets.

Learn more on this Bitcoin website.

Ethereum TradingEthereum

Now the third most valuable cryptocurrency (Ripple is 2nd at the start of 2020), this serves more industries and purposes giving it a competitive edge. Key uses of Ethereum include blockchain application platforms through to smart contracts.

Learn more on this Ethereum Project website.

Dash TradingDash

“Digital Cash” (shortened to Dash) focuses on enhancing anonymity and processing speeds of cryptocurrency. Dash is used worldwide as an efficient payment system. This popular use has led to increased liquidity and volatility within the asset class.

Discover more on the official Dash website.

Litecoin Trading


This was launched after Bitcoin in 2011. The aim was to speed up transactions with the use of a simpler algorithm. The result has led to its increase in popularity and market capitalisation. This has made it a great alternative to Bitcoin to trade. More can be found on their P2P site.

By offering 5:1 leverage on mainstream cryptocurrencies, Pepperstone enhances the potential profits or losses of this volatile sector.

Other Key Pepperstone Features

Pepperstone Group Limited is regulated by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission with the AFSL number 414530 while in the UK they trade as Pepperstone Limited with FCA 684312. Pepperstone also offers the maximum Australian forex broker leverage of 500:1. The high risk this leverage level is not suitable to all traders and losses can exceed deposits made. It’s best to understand the risks associated with high leverage before trading forex.

Summary Of Why Pepperstone Is The Best Australian FX Broker

Pepperstone won most of the categories that benchmark brokers from customer service, forex platforms, execution speeds to high leverage.

Our Rating

The overall rating is based on review by our experts

10 / 10
10 / 10
Trading Platform
10 / 10
Risk Management
7 / 10
Range of Markets
8 / 10
Customer Service
10 / 10

IC Markets Australia Broker LogoEUR/USD Lowest Spreads  = IC Markets

CFD Brokers have three main trading costs:

  1. Spreads
  2. Commissions
  3. Funding/Withdrawal Fees

The benchmark spread rate is the Euro / US Dollar (EUR/USD) currency pair. The top forex brokers publish their average spread rate for EUR/USD and IC Markets has the lowest rate of any Australian forex broker.

  • IC Markets = 0.1 pips
  • Pepperstone = 0.16 pips
  • IG = 0.36 pips
  • AxiTrader = 0.44 pips
  • ThinkMarkets = 0.50 pips
  • Plus500 = 0.60 pips
  • City Index = 0.70 pips
  • CMC Markets = 0.81 pips

The spreads above are applicable for the most popular Raw Spread account (formally known as the true ECN account) for MetaTrader 4 or MetaTrader 5. IC Markets archives these low spreads by not been a market maker and having STP with large liquidity pools. While the account isn’t called the true ECN account, the spreads are set by the market which is why over 10 currency pairs minimum spread is 0.0 pips including the EUR/USD, GBP/USD and AUD/USD.

IC Markets ECN Broker Commissions

As shown above, the commission of IC Markets main raw account is $3.50 per lot, per side. If the base currency is set for the Australian dollar then the commission is AUD $3.50 while US dollar base currency customers pay a higher commission rate of USD $3.50. Other key commission rates are for GBP base currency customers GBP 2.50, Euro base currency customers at EUR 2.75 and Singapore Dollar base currency SGD 4.50.

The third main trading fee component is deposit and withdrawal fees. IC Markets have a $200 minimum deposit fee and from this amount to large transactions, there are no additional fees. This applies for both withdrawals and deposits.

IC Markets Deposit Methods

The reason that IC Markets don’t state there are no fees is that a number of financial institutions (eg banks) charge their own fees and NAB who IC Markets utilise charge $20 for International Wire Transfers. Overall though, IC Markets doesn’t directly charge deposit or withdrawal fees further making them one of the lowest fee brokers.

Summary Of Why IC Markets Have The Lowest Spreads

IC Markets has the lowest average spreads thanks to their ECN broker spreads, low commissions and no additional fees on deposits or withdrawals. With a low initial deposit requirement of $200 and easy funding methods, IC Markets is ideal for those looking for a low fee retail investor accounts. They have ASIC regulation with AFSL number 335692.

Open a demo account >>Visit IC Markets >>

Plus500 CFD LogoBest Beginner Forex Trading Platform = Plus500

The Australian Investment Trends CFD report awarded Plus500 the best platform with:

  • An easy to use desktop and webtrader interface
  • Advanced mobile forex trading platform
  • Risk management features for different trading conditions

Why The Plus500 Forex Trading Platform Is Ideal For Beginner Forex Traders

Trading CFDs from Bitcoin, forex to commodities can all be done on the one trading platform with Plus500. There is a downloadable Windows 10 Trader or a WebTrader for shared devices. As shown below there are also apps for Windows Phones, Android, iPhone and iPad devices.

Plus500 Forex Trading Platform Devices

The Plus500 Mobile Trading Platform

Investment Trends runs a client survey of CFD traders annually and found that Plus500 had the best mobile trading platform. This was based on the ease of use, functionality and range of CFDs tradable.


Risk Management Features Offered By Plus500

Trading CFDs involves a high level of risk due to leverage which in Australia is up to 300:1 (Plus500AU Pty Ltd). Other regions such as Cyprus (CYSEC) and the UK (FCA) have lower leverage. For beginner forex traders to manage higher leverage, Plus500 has three key risk management features including:

  • Limit and Stop Loss (closes a position once a profit or loss limit is set) – No charges
  • Guaranteed Stops (guarantees a position will not lose more than a defined amount) – Extra spreads applied
  • Trailing Stops (closes a position when a trade moves in the wrong direction by a set number of pips) – No charges

Plus500 Trading Condition Risk Management

It should be noted that another risk management feature is negative balance protection only offered by a handful of brokers like easyMarkets. This ensures a Plus500 online trader never loses more than their deposit no matter what the trading conditions. For a beginner forex trader, this is an excellent feature to have.

Conclusion Of Why Plus500 Is Ideal For Beginner Forex Traders

Plus500 has an easy to use trading platform, range of tradable CFDs (such as Bitcoin) and risk management features that make it easy to try forex trading for beginners. Plus500AU PTY LTD is the ASIC subsidiary for Australian forex traders holding the AFSL number 417727.

Open a demo account >>Visit Plus500 >>

Lowest Minimum Deposit = AxiTrader

AxiTrader is the only Australian broker that has a $0 minimum deposit on both their standard a pro account types (often referred to as the ECN broker account). There are also no setup costs as shown below when opening either MetaTrader 4 account.

AxiTrader $0 Minimum Deposit Forex Accounts

The deposit methods for funds are shown below and their availability for forex traders in Australia vs overseas. It should be noted that some credit card providers may view payment to AxiTrader as a cash advance. This may lead the provider to charge additional fees so it’s worth calling them to confirm if this will be the case.

Deposit MethodAustralian TradersOverseas Traders
Electronic Funds Trander (EFT)No FeesN/A
Bpay (Australian Dollars)No FeesN/A
Telegraphic TransferNot Available$0 Fees
Debit Card$0 Fees$0 Fees
Credit Card$0 Fees$0 Fees
Neteller$0 Fees$0 Fees
SkrillNot Available$0 Fees
Global Collect$0 Fees$0 Fees
China Union PayNot Available$0 Fees

Other AxiTrader Features

The AxiTrader overall trading fees are one of the lowest of the forex brokers. This includes their EUR/USD spreads which our analysis showed were the 4th lowest. Their commission is $3.50 USD per side ($7.00 per round trip). Only Pepperstone had a lower commission rate of $3.50 AUD when a trader chooses the Australian Dollar as their base currency. AxiTrader is ASIC regulated holding the AFSL number 318232.

AxiTrader ASIC Regulated

Summary Of AxiTrader’s Trading Conditions

AxiTrader is ideal for those looking for low trading fees and lower exposure with the option of a small deposit. With a $0 initial deposit requirement, no opening fees, deposit or withdrawal fees, they provide the most flexible trading conditions for an Australian trader.

Open a demo account >>Visit Axitrader >>

Best Social Trading Platform = eToro

Best Stockbroker + CFD Broker = CMC Markets

Some traders will only choose from a range of forex brokers that also offer share trading. Having such a broker with a range of markets means they don’t require multiple accounts to trade different products. Two of the larger brokers in Australia are CMC Markets and IG and it’s no surprise that these offer currency and stockbroking services. CMC Markets as shown below offers active investor trading from just $9.90. This is significantly lower than popular stockbroking firms such as CommSec.

CMC Markets Share Brokers

When choosing a platform, it is a good idea to select a CMC Markets platform that allows share trading. This is because not all platforms allow both CFD and stockbroker services. IG Markets offer L2 Dealer which allows both stockbrokers, forex and CFD trading options. View more on currency brokers that offer these services.

Most Popular Foreign Exchange Broker = IG

Lowest Cost Cryptocurrency CFD Broker = City Index

Frequently Asked Australian FX Trading Questions

In Australia the best broker and forex platform combination are:

  • MetaTrader 4 and AxiTrader based on execution speeds and features
  • cTrader and IC Markets based on low spreads and high leverage
  • MetaTrader 5 and Pepperstone based on the products traded and service

You can view our MetaTrader 5 review or MetaTrader 4 review for more details on the forex trading platforms and offers they bring to currency trading.

A forex broker main source of income is charging a spread or commission or a trade. While a buy and sell order will have a natural spread, forex brokers make money by widening this spread. ECN forex brokers avoid this income stream and rather charge a flat commission based on the trade volume.

With over $5 USD trillion traded daily, the forex market is larger than any other financial market. There is no central trading location when currency trading with forex brokers both as market makers or through ECNs (electronic communication networks) buying and selling currency globally.

Forex accounts are offered by brokers to buy, sell and hold foreign currencies. The process for trading currency is to open a forex account, make a deposit and then trade currency pairings. With the use of leverage, currency fluctuations will lead to profits or losses.

A foreign exchange market trade is the action of buying or selling a currency pairing. A trade through a broker can include CFDs including commodities, shares, indices and even bitcoin.

Forex signals is a trigger to trade a currency pairing at a specific price and often time-frame. A signal can be a forex robot or analyst generated leading a trade alert or an automated trade to be generated.

The chart below shows what foreign currency pairings are the most traded as shown from the Bank of International Statements.

Top 5 Foreign Currency Pairings

The ‘top 10’ foreign currencies traded (totalling 100%) are:

  1. 44% = United States Dollar
  2. 16% = Euro
  3. 11% = Japanese Yen
  4. 6% = British Pound
  5. 4% = Australian Dollar
  6. 3% = Swiss Franc
  7. 2% = Chinese Yuan
  8. 1% = Mexican Peso
  9. 1% = Swedish Krona
  10. 1% = New Zealand Dollar

The Chinese Yuan is the fastest-growing currency and is moving up the foreign currency table fast. You can read more about market growth of fx trading with our article.

When it comes to currency trading, technical analysis is a methodology used to forecast the direction of forex markets through previous market date. This includes both past prices and currency trading volume and can include three charts:

1) Bar Charts

Bar charts show the high and low as well as opening and closing prices of specific periods. This is done through a line/bar format graph.

2) Candlestick Chart

Like s bar chart, candlestick charts also show opening and closing price. They also show the high and low of the same time-frame which is the ‘candlestick’ feature making it easy to identify pivot points and trend reversals.

3) Line Chart

This chart shows a line from one closing price to another. It is not specific to a period, rather is designed to show the general direction of the market.

Forex trading fundamental analysis looks at the factors that influence currency markets including economic, political and financial factors. These elements shown on the news are used by traders to predict what the future movements will be of currency markets.

Elements Used In Fundamental Analysis


Inflation can impact a countries currency value but it can also lead to rate decisions which when increased can lead to a short-term spike in the currency. This news is shared through central banks.

Surpluses And Deficits

High valued currencies are typically from countries in surplus with historically few deficits. These countries are in a prime position to lend and trade with other countries. Governments often make press releases regarding this news.

Economic Policies

Government budgets are a major currency driver with well balanced, trade opening policies leading to expected growth in the economy leading to a stronger budget. A budget that does the opposite can lead to a currency devaluation after released in the news.

Trade Levels

Active trading countries when it comes to goods and services often see an increase in demand for their currency leading to appreciation.

Forex Trading Time Periods

The largest advantage of forex trading is that unlike the stock-market that markets are always open during weekdays. From 7:00 am Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST) the markets are open until Saturday morning. This is achievable because a region is always trading currency from London, New York, Sydney to Tokyo. On Saturday morning the final market that is open in New York. The graph below shows how there is an overlap time between London and New York. This period has a higher volume of trades as these two regions have the most traders.Forex Trading Hours In Australia

A major change that impacts markets are bank holidays (also known as public holidays). Markets may close leaving a ‘gap’ in currency markets. There are also major public holidays that most countries will close markets. These including Easter and Christmas when nearly all currency markets will be closed. Generally, USA holidays impact worldwide forex trading volumes the most outside of these major holidays.

How Can I Trade Across Each Market’s Session?

Any of the listed forex brokers above can access all the major currency markets in each country. A forex trader needs to determine their base currency when opening their account (eg Australian dollars) but this doesn’t restrict them to a trading zone. For example, you can trade the Australian Dollar to the US dollar when Australian currency markets are closed. The outcome is that currency traders have more versatility when they trade compared to those who focus on shares.

Because of the extensive hours, the Australian fx brokers shown above have support open all hours during workdays. Some like IG Markets even are open during the weekend when other CFD markets can remain open. This support can come from outside of Australia for some brokers but still will meet most trader’s needs. It’s recommended to view our reviews of Australian fx brokers customer support before joining them.

When Are Currency Markets The Most Volatile?

Key events that lead to an increase in volatility on currency markets include:
  1. The Opening Of The Market – When a new country opens it’s currency markets like the stock-market increase volatility often occurs. This is due to traders factoring in movements that occurred previously in other markets.
  2. During Rate Decisions – When a reserve bank in a country markets a decision it has a direct impact on currency markets. This is due to the historical relationship between currencies and interest rates. Speculators often will trade on the moment the exact decision is made.
  3. On The Release Of Economic Data – Key government data such as national accounts, jobs data and GDP growth directly impact currency markets. The release of information not known to the market can lead to high volatility, especially when the outcome of the data was not expected.
  4. During Political Announcement – The announcement of an election or the outcome of an election can lead to extreme volatility. For example, when Donald Trump won the election the currency markets had extreme volatility as he wasn’t expected to win.

Best Forex Currency Provider


Binary Options -What You Need To Know

Binary options are not related to forex trading. Rather this is ‘all or nothing options’ where a trader predicts the movement of a commodity, index, currency or share price. It’s a speculative, high-risk product and Compare Forex Brokers does not recommend trading binary options.

So What Is Binary Options Trading?

Binary options work by predicting if in the near-future a price will be above or below a specified level. For example, will a currency pairing such as the Aussie dollar to the US dollar be trading above its current price in 60 minutes?

There are ‘once touch binaries’ which the trader tried to predict if a price will or will not reach within a specified time-frame. The other is ‘digital binaries’ which the trader needs to predict if the finishing price at a certain time will be above or below a specified level.

As discussed earlier, commodities, foreign exchange, individual shares and indices can be offered by a Binary Options trader. Contract duration of a binary option contract will be minutes to hours and in some rare cases several months. If the trader picks the correct movement they will get a fixed cash payout but if they don’t they will lose the entire investment. For this reason, the authors compare binary options to an extremely high-risk product and should only be considered by experienced traders understanding the risks involved.

Binary Trade

Image Credit: SEC Binary Options

Only a handful of foreign exchange brokers offer binary options. There is a high number of binary options scams so the professional registry which ASIC regulates should be checked to make sure they are regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.

About This Forex Brokers Australia Comparison

Most prospective forex traders often find it hard to differentiate the best 2020 Australian forex brokers and know which one is the best broker for their circumstances. This is especially true when it comes to safety and regulation with most Australian’s looking for a currency trading broker that locally regulated. This means they trade out of an Australian subsidiary and hold deposits within the country.

Australian Forex Broker List

To help speed up the process of choosing the right forex broker only Australian Securities And Investments Commission (ASIC regulated) firms were listed on this page. To make the figures relevant to Australian foreign exchange market conditions, other third-party sources were also used to collect data such as spreads and fees. Below shows the complete Australia forex broker list.

Australian Forex brokerOffice LocationMax leverageForex Platform(s)Regulation
Admiral MarketsSydney500:1MT4, MT5AFSL 410681
AETOSNorth Sydney200:1MT4, Multi-Account ManagementAFSL 313016
AVATradeSydney400:1 MT4, AvaTradeAct,AFSL 406684
AxiTraderNorth Sydney400:1MT4AFSL 318232
BMFNSydney200:1MT4, LMAXAFSL 379035
City IndexSydney200:1MT4, AT ProAFSL 345646
CMC MarketsSydney500:1CMC Next GenerationAFSL No. 238054
Core Liquidity MarketsSydney400:1MT4, Multi-Account Trader AFSL 305539
Direct FXSydney400:1MT4, Multi0Account Manager , CQG FXAFSL 305539
easyMarketsSydney400:1MT4, easyMarketsAFSL 246566
EightCapMelbourne500:1MT4AFSL 391441
Sydney200:1MT4, FOREX Trader PROAFSL 345646
Forex FSSydney500:1MT4, JForex,AFSL 323193
FP MarketsSydney500:1MT4, IRESS SuiteAFSL 286354
FXCMSydney400:1MT4, NinjaTrader, Trading StationAFSL 309763
FXGiantsSydney200:1MT4, Personal Multi-Account ManagerAFSL 417482
FXOpenSydney500:1MT4AFSL 412871
Global PrimeSydney200:1MT4, FIX API, MAM/PAMMAFSL 385620
GO MarketsMelbourne300:1MT4AFSL 254963
Hantec Markets AustraliaSydney200:1MT4, Interbank DirectAFSL 326907
IC MarketsSydney500:1MT4, MT5, cTrader AFSL 335692
IGMelbourne200:1MT4, L2 Dealer, ProRealTimeAFSL 220440
InvastSydney100:1MT4, IRESSTrader, MaxxTraderAFSL 438283
JB AlphaMelbourne100:1MT4AFSL 327075
KVB KunlunMelbourne200:1Forex StarAFSL 226602
OANDASydney100:1OANDA, MT4AFSL 412981
PepperstoneMelbourne500:1MT4, MT5, cTraderAFSL 414530
PhillipCapitalMelbourne100:1MT4, Phillip CFD TraderAFSL 246827
Plus500Sydney300:1CFD Trading Platform OnlyAFSL 417727
Royal Financial TradingSydney400:1MT4AFSL 420268
Rubix FXMelbourne400:1MT4, Rubix PrimeAFSL 337985
Saxo BankSydney50:1Saxo TraderAFSL 280372
Synergy FXMelbourne500:1MT4, Social TraderAFSL 403863
ThinkMarketsMelbourne400:1MT4, Trade InterceptorAFSL 424700
USGFXSydney500:1MT4, ZuluTradeAFSL 302792
Vantage FXSydney500:1MT4, MT5, MarketTraderAFSL 428901
XMSydney500:1MT4, MT5AFSL 443670.

While the ASIC regulated forex broker table above only have Australian regulated foreign exchange brokers, several other tables look at online brokers based on key requirements ranging from ‘low fees’ to ‘high leverage’. We also focus on CFD providers such as Plus500 CFDs, FXCM and IG Markets for those looking for more than just currency trading. Most of these forex trading platforms are nationally regulated as the authors rated higher brokers that offered Australians the higher level of security. Since this is the case, it’s recommended that individuals view the ASIC Regulated Forex Brokers to suit their forex trading style.

Forex Brokers Data Accuracy

This Australian foreign exchange broker comparison was based on individual brokers websites. Without the use of feeds or automation, the authors were able to give a more informed decision but it can lead to inaccuracies occurring. This is mainly due to foreign exchange brokers changing information (such as their average spreads) without notice. Please inform the authors if you see an inaccuracy. To ensure forex traders make the right decision, Compare Forex Brokers sends all users to individual brokers websites to join. At this point, the trader should verify the information found on this site to ensure the broker meets their requirements.

Trading Forex Brokers Glossary

  1. Forex = A shortened version of the phrase foreign exchange.
  2. Spread = A gap between the ask and sell price of a currency pairing (often the broker’s margin)
  3. Bid Price = The price a trader can sell their currency at
  4. Margin = The amount required to open a position
  5. Margin Call = This is an alert that there isn’t sufficient margin to maintain the position(s) that are open and may require extra liquidity or the position to be closed
  6. Base Currency = When viewing currency pairs such as AUD/EUR the first currency (in this case AUD) is the base currency.
  7. Leverage = The ability a forex broker provides to amplify a trader’s base amount to increase the exposure to the market.