Australian Forex Broker Comparison

The top Australian forex brokers are ASIC regulated offering forex trading platforms from MetaTrader 4 to cTrader with ECN broker spreads from 0.0 pips keeping Australian forex trader costs low while providing a range of financial services including CFDs offering from currency pairs, indices to Bitcoin.

View the forex broker Australia comparison below.

By Justin Grossbard / Updated: Monday, February 17th, 2020

Australia Forex Brokers Background

Best Australian Forex Broker 2020

Top 8 Australia Forex Brokers

The best ASIC regulated Australian forex brokers are based across eight key categories.

  • 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 trading costs

Broker Reviewed

IC Markets
FP Markets
CMC Markets
Our Rating
Most Awarded Broker
Best Spread Broker
Trade with CFDs and on Stock Market
Useful risk management features

Regulations and Licenses

IC Markets
FP Markets
CMC Markets
ASIC (Australia)


IC Markets
FP Markets
CMC Markets
No Commission Account Spreads From (EUR/USD):
Commission Account Spreads From (EUR/USD):
Commission (per 100k traded side trip)
AUD $3.50
USD $3.50
USD $3.00
Minimum Deposit
USD $200
Volume Commission Rebates
Has Islamic Account
No Inactivity Fees
Funding Methods
Visa, Mastercard, JCB, AMEX, Diners, Wire, Skrill, Neteller
No Deposit/Withdrawal Fees

Markets and Instruments

IC Markets
FP Markets
CMC Markets
Forex Currency Pairs CFDs
Cryptocurrency CFDs
Index CFDs
Share CFDs
Commodities CFD
Retail Maximum Leverage
Professional Maximum Leverage

Trading Platforms + Tools

IC Markets
FP Markets
CMC Markets
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
Only in ESMA regulated territories
ESMA regulated territories only
Demo Account
Unique Feature 1
Smart Trader Tools
ECN pricing
Fastest Limit Order Execution Speed
Offers both CFD and Stock trading
Guaranteed stop loss orders
Unique Feature 2
Fast Execution Speed
Range of fee free funding options
No Dealing Desk Execution
Trade treasury notes
Choice of Platforms


Pepperstone Is The Best Forex Broker In Australia

YouTube video

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

  • Most popular forex trading platforms
  • Low spreads and fees
  • High 500:1 leverage level
  • Ability to trade bitcoin and other cryptos
  • Award-winning customer service

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 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)
2) MetaTrader 5

MetaTrader 5 Logo
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 Platform
Primarily used by expert Australian forex traders, this forex 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 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 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 tight 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 tight 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 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 tight 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 Trading
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 Group Limited is the ASIC regulated body for Australian forex traders with AFSL 414530.

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

With low spreads and commissions intermediate to expert traders should consider the broker.

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

Frequently Asked Australian FX Trading Questions

There are three main forex platforms for Australian traders:

  • MetaTrader 4 is the most popular for currency trader and the best broker is Pepperstone
  • MetaTrader 5 is the most popular for CFD trading (eg Shares) and the best broker is IC Markets
  • cTrader is preferred by algorithmic traders with Pepperstone recommended

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.

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.

About Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) Brokers

To help start trading with the right CFD broker we have collated brokers that only have Australian Securities And Investments Commission regulation (ASIC regulated). This means they hold an Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL) for the financial instruments offered. Australian traders should only consider these regulated brokers to avoid scams that are normally associated with unregulated brokers. Below shows our forex brokers Australia regulated list updated in 2020.

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 focused on other CFD providers such as FP Markets, GO Markets, FXCM, AvaTrade 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. If you’re located in a location such as the USA, these brokers may not be able to cater for you and other regulators brokers such as NFA are more suitable.

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 we traders to broker websites to join so they can make a final check. At this point, the trader should verify the information found on this site to ensure the broker meets their requirements.

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