Australian ECN providers allow traders to directly access liquidity pools with no dealing desk. Through forex trading platforms such as MT4 ECN/STP brokers achieve the lowest spreads and fastest speeds of any Australian broker.
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Our best ECN broker Australia list in August 2021 is the following.
The best forex broker offering ECN trading using MT4 is Pepperstone. Being one of Australia’s most trusted brands in foreign exchange trading, their ECN accounts are rich with features. The no dealing desk broker offers retail investors direct market access (DMA) thanks to top-tier liquidity sources while executing orders with straight-through processing (STP).
Check out some of Pepperstone’s best features below:
Pepperstone has some of the lowest ECN spreads of any Australian broker as you can compare using our spread calculator.
As a specialist MT4 forex broker, Pepperstone’s key trading platform is MT4. Being an ECN FX broker, clients are able to seamlessly access their ECN Razor Account directly within MT4. Let’s go over a few of the advantages that the MT4 trading platform affords traders.
With a high number of retail forex traders set in their ways and insisting on using MT4 as their trading platform of choice, Pepperstone is one of the best Australian ECN brokers to cater to the needs of such clients.
The Pepperstone MT4 trading platform is available across multiple devices and operating systems. This means that you’re able to access your Pepperstone ECN trading account in the time, place and way that suits you best.
Desktop computer access:
Rated as the best MT4 ECN broker in Australia, we recommend trading forex on Pepperstone’s ECN Razor Account. But as long as you understand the difference between ECN and STP account types, the choice is entirely up to you.
Key features of the Pepperstone Razor ECN Account:
View Pepperstone Review >>Visit Pepperstone >>
The overall rating is based on review by our experts
IC Markets has been rated as one of the best ECN brokers in Australia. Known for having some of the tightest spreads in the industry, IC Markets come in at number one on our list.
With a self-proclaimed mission statement of providing traders with the lowest spreads possible during all market conditions, IC Markets are rated as our best low spread ECN broker in Australia.
Best features of IC Markets:
When it comes to ECN liquidity providers, IC Markets have the most comprehensive partner lists of all Australian forex brokers. It’s these partnerships that ensure IC Markets’ low spreads on their RAW ECN account are where they stand out from the pack.
When trading on ECN broker spreads, you receive the best prices available within the interbank forex market. This means that depending on the prices on offer, you could receive spreads as low as zero.
Average spreads – Spreads as low as zero and an average EUR/USD spread of 0.1 pips (AUD/USD at 0.3).
Small commissions – Commissions the same as Pepperstone at $3.50 per standard lot, per round turn.
Trading conditions – Deep liquidity pools and fast execution speeds means their RAW ECN account is built for day traders.
By aggregating prices from up to 25 of IC Markets’ partner liquidity providers, the tightest spreads possible are always ensured.
If you’re looking to keep your spreads as close to zero as possible, then trade during periods of high liquidity such as during the London open.
Thanks to a global network of strategically placed trading servers, all IC Markets clients benefit from stable, yet still lightning-fast trading conditions. Trading conditions go hand in hand with spreads and here are a few IC Markets technological pieces worth highlighting.
MT4 bridge – A next-generation price aggregator used to connect clients’ trading platforms, with dark liquidity pools of partner liquidity providers.
Server locations – Located in the Equinix NY4 data centre in New York, the servers are located close to the MT4 bridge. This ensures latency is minimised, making IC Markets a go-to for day traders.
The technological aspect of a broker is sometimes hard to understand, but this breakdown can help traders decide on the best ECN broker in Australia.
If you’re looking for a low spread, Australian ECN forex broker, then an IC Markets Raw Spread Account is worth your consideration.
Key features of the IC Markets Raw Spread Account:
Marketing themselves as Australia’s original MetaTrader forex broker, GO Markets has taken a leading role in helping clients upgrade to the MetaTrader 5 trading platform.
While MT5 isn’t for current traders set in their ways, those wishing to start fresh with the latest version of MT5 should consider GO Markets.
Check out some of GO Markets’ best features below:
As a specialist MetaTrader 5 forex broker, GO Markets is trusted by both novice and professional traders alike.
GO Markets describe the MT5 platform as a multi-functional, modern and comfortable trading platform. One that helps clients to follow a path to successful trading. Quite the description, right!
Here are some advantages of trading on MT5 with GO Markets:
Choice of markets – Over 350 trading instruments, across forex, indices, commodities and crypto.
Full EA functionality – EAs work exactly the same as on MT4. You just can’t use MT4 EAs on MT5, they must be specially programmed.
Ease of trading – One-click trading, market depth and multiple new order types supported in MT5.
Technical analysis – MT5 is a chartist’s dream platform, pushing the standard technical analysis objects up to 80+.
Hedging allowed – Take multiple positions in opposite directions within MT5.
As you can see, there are certainly reasons to upgrade from MT4 to MT5 with GO Markets.
When it comes to choosing to trade on the MetaTrader 5 platform with GO Markets, the decision should come down to more than just charting.
Here are a few of the other areas that the GO Markets MT5 platform excels in:
Technical and fundamental analysis – MT5 offers impressive analytical tools for both fundamental and technical analysts alike. More timeframes, more indicators, and fundamentals sourced directly from within the platform.
Trading signals and copy trading – If you don’t have time to conduct your own technical or fundamental analysis, then MT5 also facilitates copy trading within the platform. Subscribe to trading signals of successful traders and have them replicated on your own GO Markets account.
Algorithmic trading – If you’re in a camp that relies on algorithms to make trading decisions to take away human emotion, then MT5 has a suite of tools for you. Code, edit or simply install custom algorithms designed for a strategy that suits you.
As one of our best Australian ECN brokers, GO Markets has a specialist account called GO Plus+.
Some of the key features of a GO Plus+ ECN Account:
View Go Markets Review >>Visit GO Markets >>
Axi. (formally AxiTrader) is part of the best Australian ECN broker big 3. If your most important aspect of a forex broker is having a low minimum deposit and the ability to trade micro-lots, then Axi. might be the best choice for you.
Axi. best features:
Known as a specialist MetaTrader broker because of their MT4 and MT5 trading platforms, Axi. offer clients a free suite of add-ons for all traders with a live trading account – MT4 NexGen.
Being one of our top-rated Australian ECN brokers for their low minimum deposit, you can choose one of several ways to fund your Axi. account.
Fund your account using:
Debit and credit cards (Visa, Mastercard, Maestro, JCB) – Instant, max 15 minutes.
Neteller – Instant, max 15 minutes.
Skrill/Moneybookers – 3-5 business days.
Global Collect (only for Australian clients) – Same or next day.
BPAY (only for Australian Clients) – 1-3 business days.
Bank Transfer – Same day for deposits coming from Australian bank accounts, next day for overseas accounts.
Broker to Broker Transfer – 3-5 business days.
Each funding type has its delays and charges, often coming from the payment provider rather than from Axi. themselves. Check with each provider before making a deposit or withdrawal from your Axi. account.
With many of the other best Australian ECN brokers in this list also offering clients a full suite of MT4 and MT5 trading platforms, it’s Axi.’s free NexGen suite of add-ons that sets them apart.
Here is the full list of NexGen MT4 add-ons that Axi.’s clients have access to:
Sentiment indicator – Analyse market trends by getting a glimpse into Axi.’s long/short book.
Correlation trader – Take advantage of both positive and negative correlations with an easy-to-read matrix.
Alarm manager – Ensure you don’t miss a trade again, with price alarms to alert you of set scenarios.
Economic calendar – No longer switch between MT4 and Forex Factory with this economic calendar built into MT4.
New terminal window – An update to the dated MT4 terminal view where you can manage OCO orders, alerts, templates, and group functions.
Automated trade journal – Automatically have your trades journaled within MT4.
Session map – An interactive map showing every forex trading session over 24 hours.
Mini manager – Use an alternate one-click trading method across multiple order types.
Forex news – Stream an economic news feed directly into your MT4 platform so once again, you don’t have to flick between your charts and a third party website.
Can you see the edge that this full suite of tools can give you? All you need is a funded (no minimum deposit) live account with Axi.
Axi.’s ECN account option is called the Pro Account.
Along with having no minimum deposit, here are some of the account’s key features:
Axi Review >>Visit Axi. >>
If customer service is your most important aspect of choosing an Australian ECN broker, then Global Prime is worth your consideration.
Here are some features of trading with Global Prime:
When choosing to trade forex with Global Prime, experiencing their customer service advantage is more than just if you have an issue.
The Global Prime customer support advantage comes from all facets of communication between broker and client.
Trader/broker relationship – Whether it’s an issue with a trade execution or just a friendly chat about a technical analysis setup, Global Prime is renowned for going the extra mile.
Institutional trading experience – Global Prime offers the same liquidity and execution to their prime of prime clients, that they offer their retail clients. There is total transparency in all executions.
Trade execution – Global Prime is the only Australian ECN forex broker to offer trade receipts on every single order executed by their liquidity providers. This is a service, unrivalled in Australia.
Sourced liquidity – All ECN prices are sourced from a variety of tier 1 and regional banks to ensure the best prices. ECN liquidity providers such as Fastmatch, LMAX, Currenex, Gain GTX, and Hotspot offer institutional grade liquidity to retail clients.
Direct ECN market access – Global Prime offers ECN liquidity to both retail and institutional clients, differentiating them from the other Australian ECN brokers. No longer do institutional clients need a Prime broker to access ECN prices.
One final advantage of Global Prime ECN trade execution and transparency is the ability for clients to access deep liquidity pools and create resting and limit orders directly in the market themselves.
Global Prime differentiates itself from other Australian forex brokers, by offering only one account. That means that every client trading with Global Prime is trading on an ECN account.
When you trade with Global Prime, you receive complete transparency. This means absolutely no B-book model or market-making.
One account means you’re trading on ECN market conditions only.
Markets.com is another ECN regulated broker by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) with AFSL number 424008. If you’re looking to access powerful trading tools to assist you with your trading, Markets.com is the best choice.
Markets.com best features include:
With the help of the 14 proprietary trading tools, Markets.com platform is more powerful. Markets.com makes available to all of their clients 3 categories of technical indicators, technical, fundamental and sentimental tools.
Technical tools – provide customizable charting functions and a premium tool that helps you view the real-time correlation between multiple assets. The advanced charting integrates multiple indicators (H-L Volatility, SMMA, STARC Bands, Schaff Trend Cycle, etc.), oscillators and 9 different chart types.
Fundamental tools – integrates market commentaries news by Thomson Reuters. This tool also provides alerts based on news events or technical events.
Sentiment tools – includes 6 unique tools that measure the smart money buying and selling activities as well as Markets.com long/short book.
When you choose to trade with a true ECN broker, your buy and sell orders are matched with other market participants’ orders. Markets.com facilitates trades without interfering with your orders. This can be particularly attractive because it ensures lower spreads, faster order speeds, and minimised slippages.
Based on the statistics provided by Markets.com, approximately 86% of clients’ orders had zero or positive slippage in 2019 compared to 79% (2020).
Only 13.79%of Markets.com orders incurred negative slippage.
At Markets.com, clients can access the ECN trading conditions via the professional account.
Key features of the Markets.com professional account:
Markets.com Review >>Visit Markets.com >>
With over 239,000 retail clients worldwide and 47 years of experience in the FX space, IG Markets is the largest ECN brokers in Australia. Currently, IG is processing on average USD 6.8 billion of daily transactions and 7 million orders per month, with 93 different currency pairs.
Best features of IG Markets include:
IG uses a DMA model to execute client’s transactions, which means orders are submitted directly on the Interbank market without the middleman. However, IG makes it clear that clients “are trading based on underlying market prices and depth,” but when you open a position you’re actually trading a CFD contract.
IG’s liquidity provider (LPs) network is comprised of 12 tier-one banks and tier-two banks along with leading market makers and Multilateral Trading Facilities (‘MTFs’). As a strong advocate of transparency, IG’s execution venues are openly published within the Order Execution Policy. In order to give clients the best available prices and execution, IG routes clients’ orders directly to one of their LPs without any interference.
IG prices are aggregated from the following financial institutions: Bank of America, Barclays, Citadel, Citibank, EBS, Goldman Sachs, Hotspot, HSBC, JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley, UBS and XTX.
There are a variety of advantages of IG’s Forex direct account, which mimics the ECN/STP execution models. Some of the key features of trading through IG’s DMA service include:
IG Markets Review >>Visit IG Markets >>
FP Markets is an Australian-based ECN broker headquartered in Sydney, which offers the best trading services for scalping. FP Markets is a true ECN broker, with no dealing desk (NDD) execution model
Check out some of FP Markets’ best features below:
FP Markets empowers the standard MT4 platform with a set of 12 unique trading tools. Along with the default MT4 indicators, FP Markets’ clients can access tick charts and a Mini Terminal that facilitates scalping. The Stealth Order features allow for automatically buy and sell orders, which is crucial to a scalper.
Other advanced functionalities of the MT4 Trader Toolbox includes the ability to set up alerts, a robust trading tool like the Sentiment Trader and Session Map and last but not least quality market research via the Trader Toolbox Connect tool.
To give scalpers and day traders an all-around trading experience, FP Markets complements its trading tools with fast execution, no-requotes and low latency. Additionally, FP Markets’s spreads are consistently kept on the lower side. On the spread side, FP Markets competes with big names like Pepperstone and IC Markets which have the lowest spreads in the FX industry.
The average EUR/USD spread is 0.1 pips respectively 0.2 pips for AUD/USD. More, FP Markets is able to keep the EUR/USD at 0.0 pips “on average 35.89% of the time.” This is based on price data compiled from 1 Dec 2020 to 31 Dec 2020 according to info found on FP Markets website. We couldn’t verify this statistic.
FP Markets’ servers are collocated inside the Equinix NY4 data server, which ensures fast execution, ultra-low latency and minimal slippage.
FP Markets’ ECN account was specifically designed for active traders, the RAW account provides scalpers with all the features that are conducive to profitable scalping.
Key features of the FP Markets RAW Account:
FP Markets Review >>Visit FP Markets >>
If you’re a beginner trader, one of the best forex brokers to start trading is ThinkMarkets. ThinkMarkets is worth your inspection as it provides an outstanding selection of quality educational resources and market research.
Check out some of ThinkMarkets’ best features below:
Not all forex brokers are adapted to welcome beginner traders who require special trading features. However, ThinkMarkets offers beginner traders a wide range of educational materials and market research content to accommodate the needs of even the most demanding FX traders.
ThinkMarkets provides industry-leading education through its “Learn to Trade” section. ThinkMarkets’ online trading course is available for beginner, intermediate and advanced traders. Additional educational resources include a well-organized trading glossary library with a search function; trading guides on most popular technical indicators and chart patterns and downloadable Free eBooks.
ThinkMarkets also helps new traders with solid research and related resources. In-house analysts at ThinkMarkets cover all the latest market risk events both in writing and via interactive live webinars.
The ThinkZero account is the ECN-like account type best suited for beginners. Along with having rich educational resources, here are some additional key features of the ThinkMarkets ThinkZero Account:
ThinkMarkets Review >>Visit ThinkMarkets >>
After having compared the best Australian ECN brokers above, you can see that each has aspects that make them stand out from the rest. Depending on your trading experience, the global foreign exchange landscape can be tough to navigate, so we’re here to help.
As an Australian, it’s recommended you avoid trading with a CySEC regulated market maker. Instead, choose an ECN broker regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). Don’t take an unnecessarily high-risk, by going offshore. When you make a final decision on the best forex or CFD broker for you, start trading by opening a demo account and going over each characteristic yourself, to see how it fits with your style. You may also want to consider choosing a broker with negative balance protection as an additional risk management system.
Broker reviews help find the best brokers, but only you can make the final decision. You can also view our best global brokers with ECN accounts which considered providers regulated with other authorities, including the FCA, MAS and the FSCA in South Africa.
Justin Grossbard has been investing for the past 20 years and writing for the past 10. He co-founded Compare Forex Brokers in 2014 after working with the foreign exchange trading industry for several years. He also founded a number of FinTech and digital startups including Innovate Online and SMS Comparison. Justin holds a Masters Degree and an Honours in Commerce from Monash University. He and his wife Paula live in Melbourne, Australia with his son and Siberian cat. In his spare time, he watches Australian Rules Football and invests on global markets.