Forex trading in New Zealand requires a Financial Markets Authority NZ regulated forex broker. There are currently 6 FMA regulated forex brokers in NZ which were evaluated in April 2021 based on forex trading platform, spreads, commissions and customer support in New Zealand.
The best FMA regulated New Zealand forex brokers are.
BlackBull is one of the few brokers founded in New Zealand (Auckland) offering 2 retail investor accounts within 60+ tradable CFD instruments including:
BlackBull offers ‘True ECN’ trading conditions for kiwi traders. This means that individuals can trade directly with liquidity markets know as straight-through-processing (STP). In the case of Blackbull, liquidity providers include the Bank of America, Credit Suisse and HSBC. To help you get the best possible spreads, BlackBull has its own proprietary aggregation system designed to ensure liquidity providers are competing with each other to bring you the best spreads. Below shows the three ECN broker accounts available for NZ forex traders.
The standard account is designed for beginners with just a spread charged and no commissions. This simpler cost structure makes it easier to calculate trading costs for novice traders. With no commissions charged, the spreads are wider than other accounts, which is why experienced traders rarely choose this option.
This account is best for traders wanting the lowest spreads available to retail traders. Spreads start from 0.1 pips and have commissions USD $3.00 sideways / $6.00 round-turn. Which low spreads and low commissions costs this account an excellent choice for scalpers and high-volume traders. Like the Standard account, the minimum deposit is $200.
If you open your account with a minimum of $20,000, then you can receive the best spreads BlackBull offers. Spreads for this account start from 0.0 pip and commissions can be negotiated with your BlackBull client relationship manager.
BlackBull offers the two best forex trading platforms based on popularity, MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5. Below shows that while MetaTrader 4 is the older trading software of the two, it remains the choice for forex trading vs MetaTrader 5 which is designed for CFD trading.
What makes Blackbull the best MetaTrader broker is its superior infrastructure for MetaTrader 4. This includes the use of the NY4 Equinix data centre in New York to connect you with their liquidity providers. This data centre is where the majority of liquidity providers store their servers, so it makes sense BlackBull’s use this NY4 as their main server location. However, to ensure you get the fastest possible execution for your trades, Blackbull can also connect you with fully functional servers in London, Japan, Hong Kong and Shanghai where the proximity may be better for your location.
Other enhancements to their forex trading platform include the add-ones of ZuluTrade and Myfxbook for social trading. BlackBull traders also have access to Virtual Private Servers (VPS) through VPS Trading, NYC Servers or Beeks FX. The enhances the forex trading platform execution speed to as low as 1ms.
BlackBull was founded in NZ and uses Auckland for its headquarters. This is also where their main customer support is based during business hours, which is complemented by the Malaysian office for support outside of business hours. When you open a forex trading account, you’re provided with a dedicated account manager.
Key points of contact including:
Deposits can be made via:
The minimum deposit with BlackBull markets is $200 NZD. Traders who make a deposit receive free education tools including videos, guides and a trading glossary.
Full review >>Visit BlackBull >>
The overall rating is based on review by our experts
CMC Markets allows trading CFDs across the world with FCA regulation (formally FSA) in the UK to ASIC regulation in Australia. Within New Zealand they are licenced by the FMA to provide contracts for difference (CFDs) and countdowns across:
Below shows the spreads offered by the regulated broker on the core markets, ranging from Forex to cryptocurrencies.
Most CFDs have trading costs included in the spread, so don’t have commissions. Spreads for most major currency pairs start from 0.7 pips and you can choose from over 300 currency pairs. Other CFDs with no commissions include indices, cryptocurrencies, hard and soft commodities and treasuries.
If you do wish to purchase share CFDs then you can choose over 9000 shares across 23 markets including NZX, ASX, NYSE, LSE. The commission will vary for each market but if you trade on the NZX the fee is 0.10% with a minimum fee of NZD 7.00. Trading on the ASX will cost you 0.09% with a minimum fee of AUD 7.00 and 2 cents (min. USD 10.00) on a US stock exchange.
CMC offers a choice to 2 trading platforms. These are their own platform known as ‘Next Generation’ and MetaTrader 4.
Next Generation is a solid alternative to MT4, it offers 115 technical indicators and over 70 chart patterns across 12 types of charts. Perhaps the most interesting feature is the availability of a guaranteed stop-loss order (GSLO). As CMC has its own trading platforms, it is one of few brokers that can offer this feature. A GSLO is the same as a stop-loss order but CMC will guarantee to close out of the trade at the price you set for a small premium. This means you don’t need to worry about being caught out in the event of slippage or market volatility. Best of all, if you close your trade without needing to use the GSLO, then the entire GSLO cost will be refunded.
The minimum deposit with CMC Markets is $0 with deposit methods ranging from credit card, direct deposit to Paypal. Their prosperity forex platform is designed for desktop and mobile (app). There is also a web trader option for those who don’t want to download software onto your device.
CMC Markets offers leverage on major currency pairs of up to 500:1. There is a high level of risk when trading at this level, so only experienced traders with a high-risk threshold should consider choosing the maximum leverage available. Maximum leverage ranges for other products with 500:1 of indices, 400:1 for treasuries, and 200:1 for commodities. You can view more leverage information on the CMC Markets review.
Should you choose to trade with CMC, it may useful to note that this broker does have an office in New Zealand (not all broker do) at Level 25, 151 Queen Street, Auckland which can be useful if you desire a broker with a local presence.
Open a demo account >>Visit CMC Markets >>
IG is one of the largest retail fx broker worldwide marketing itself as an all-in-one trading solution provider. They provide stockbroking, currency and CFDs trading services across a number of forex platforms.
IG Markets is a market maker which means spreads don’t come with commission cost which makes them a good option for traders looking for simpler cost structure. Traders also benefit from a range of inclusive tools that come with their account include a range of risk management tools and a large education library about trading. You can find more about IG with our in-depth review here.
If you choose to do share trading, IG offers NZ traders share with market-based spreads across 12,000 companies and a 0.09% commission per side (minimum of NZ $7).
If you prefer to trade Forex you can choose from over 100 currency pairs including AUD/USD and EUR/USD CFDs which have an average spread of 0.75 pips.
Overall, spreads and commissions vary by CFDs with some more competitive than others. CMC overall spreads and commissions were viewed as more competitive compared to IG.
IG offers a large and diverse range of products for trading across over 17,000 markets which is great for portfolio diversity. Very few brokers can offer the range of products that IG Markets offer. Products include:
Should you wish to sign up with IG, it may be useful to know the broker does not have an office in New Zealand.
Open a demo account >>Visit IG Markets >>
When trading with PLUS500 you can choose from the following CFD products
Plus 500 has its own trading platform which means it can offer a range of tools not always found with other brokers. These include:
One weakness of choosing Plus500 is that the broker does not have an office in New Zealand, which may present issues should you want to engage with the broker in person.
Open a demo account >>Visit Plus500 >>
*Your capital is at risk ‘76.4% of retail CFD accounts lose money’
Hantec Markets New Zeland is part of the Hantec Group which also has regulated entities for forex trading in Australia, Japan, England and Vanuatu. The company has its headquarters in Hong Kong where it was founded 30 years ago and has been licenced to offer derivatives by the FMA in New Zeland since November 2018.
Choosing Hantec Markets gives you access to commissions free spreads starting from 0.6 pips. The broker uses Straight Through Processing (STP) which means there is no dealing desk. No dealing desk ensures your orders receive the most optimal execution and pricing when you trade.
Trading products available with Hantec Include:
Hantec offers the most popular forex trading platform, MetaTrader 4 for both Windows and Mac (via an emulator). This is the platform the most used by online brokers worldwide and by many of the top brokers. MetaTrader 4 (MT4) is suitable by a range of trading experience forex traders with Hantec Markets offering based currency including GBP, USD and EUR. There is also the option of a demo account to trade virtual funds before real money.
The best cTrader forex broker in NZ is OMF Markets. OMF are specialist when trading derivatives and offer the following products for trading:
OMF offers a choice of 4 platforms for trading and it is important you choose the right platform for trading your desired CFD. The following platforms are available
If you are looking for an alternative mainstream platform to MetaTrader 4 or MetaTrader 5 that has no cost to use, cTrader is a popular choice. cTrader has lightning-fast execution which makes the platform popular with scalpers, high-frequency traders, copy traders and for automation. In addition to this, the platform has Depth of Market (Level II pricing) and a number of useful technical analysis features such as multi-charting and multiple time frames when charting.
Trading with cTrader allows you to trade the following products:
Commission when using cTrader is $100 per million in the base currency traded (ie AUD/USD then AUD is your base)
Rockfort Markets is a FMA regulated broker that offers both CFD and share trading. Two popular mainstream trading platforms are available to choose from – MetaTrader 4 and Trader Workstation. Both software options can be used as desktop and webtrader platforms, as well as mobile trading apps for iOS and Android devices.
A range of financial instruments are available to trade with Rockfort Markets as CFDs or physical assets. 54 major and minor currency pairs can be traded as CFDs, with the pricing structure dependent on the account type you sign up to:
Along with forex trading, the online broker offers the following asset classes to trade as CFDs:
As well as CFDs, longer term investment opportunities include trading shares, options, futures and ETFs as physical assets.
Rockfort Markets provide access to thousands of different stocks to trade from 14 different countries. Brokerage fees are competitive:
Overall, Rockfort Markets may be well-suited if you are looking to trade a range of CFDs alongside a selection of longer-term investments such as stocks and ETFs.
The best fx broker for New Zealand forex traders is FMA regulated with a valid FSP number and has:
Our NZ broker review found BlackBull Markets was the best forex broker for NZ fx traders.
The local regulator for New Zealand is the Financial Markets Authority who regulate forex brokers trading in NZ. Those looking to trade forex or other CFDs should find an FMA regulated broker that suits their trading needs. Other regulators include the CFTC and NFA in USA and ASIC in Australia.
Most forex brokers trade cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin as a contract for difference (CFDs). This means you don’t tangibly buy and sell crypto, but rather speculate on its movement with leverage involved. You can view our review of IG who have a wide range of crypto CFD to trade.
The most popular forex trading platform is MetaTrader 4 created by MetaQuotes. Most forex brokers offer MetaTrader 4 to trade with, while MetaTrader 5 is also offered for those looking to trade a wider market. CMC Markets offers the choice of MetaTrader 4 or their own forex trading platform and is the recommended NZ fx broker.
NZ forex traders should only consider a CFD provider that shows as active on the Financial Service Providers Register. Only FMA brokers are listed on this page (last updated in April 2021), and kiwis are recommended to avoid providers without a New Zealand forex license. This includes Pepperstone NZ, AvaTrade or Axi (formally AxiTrader). Even though these brokers are regulated by another tier 1 regulators such as the ASIC, NFA or FCA. AxiTraders FMA licence has been suspended and should not be considered by NZ forex traders. New Zealand forex traders should understand the high risks of leveraged products. Regulatory bodies have guides providing risk warnings and risk management suggestions, including this article.
When selecting the best forex broker in New Zealand forex broker, you should consider the following 5 aspects:
1) Brokerage Fees is primarily the spreads. Spreads are similar to those traveller views when going to a foreign exchange provider with a different price for ‘buying’ a currency compared to ‘selling’ the same currency. The foreign exchange provider makes the difference, which is called the ‘spread’. Some forex brokers will move to minimise these spreads and instead charge a commission. This increases the transparency of forex brokerage costs and can lead to a lower overall brokerage. These types of NZ brokers are called ECN brokers. It should be noted that some NZ forex broker charges other fees for holding positions, trading exotics and certain funding methods.
2) Forex Trading Platforms help individual online forex brokers match individual traders with overseas liquidity markets. The main markets are in New York and London, so the trading platform servers need to be close to these locations. Choosing the right forex trading platform will mean finding one that has a good interface, fast trading execution, and its popularity. By using a popular forex platform like cTrader or MetaTrader 4, a broker can relatively seamlessly change the NZ forex broker they trade with. Forex broker reviews will often give more insights into platform performance.
3) Leverage is critical for currency trading to make it worthwhile for traders. With currencies often moving by fractions of a percent each day, leverage makes these changes more substantial. The leverage levels can up to 10x different, so this element needs to be considered. It’s also worth noting that higher leverage is not necessarily better. This is because higher leverage increases the risks of forex trading.
4) Risk Management features can help forex brokers reduce the level of risk associated with leverage. Some management tools are inbuilt such as minimum balance protection, which ensures an NZ trader doesn’t lose more than their deposit. Other features need to be enabled on individual trades such as guaranteed stops where a broker can determine the most they are willing to lose on a transaction. It should be noted that these features can increase the brokerage costs of the trader.
5) Regulation: The NZ financial service providers register created by the Financial Services Market (FMA) show locally regulated fx brokers. There are many requirements of the New Zealand regulators, so choosing these fx brokers will reduce the risk of forex scans. The brokers listed on this page meet FMA requirements, and you can view the FSPR (financial service provider registry) website. Other key regulatory bodies include the Financial Services Complaints Ltd (FSCL) where complaints of financial institutions can be made.
To view the NZ licenced provider list, you can view the FMA register, and the regulated brokers available. The top derivative issuers which offer retail forex broker NZ services are listed below. As further licences can be added or suspended, it’s recommended to check the FMA register website to ensure details are up-to-date.
Please note, Axi NZ (formally AxiTrader) lost their Financial Markets Authority in 2020.
Disclaimer: Before trading, make sure you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. Any leveraged product increases your chances to lose money when trading. Most fx providers will provide details of the percentage of retail investor accounts lose money. Make sure you are aware that you can lose money when trading CFDs, which are complex instruments. Understand how CFDs work before trading and consider a demo account before trading real money. While overseas traders such as eToro may have overseas regulation from FCA to FSC its recommended to stick to the list shown on this page regulated by FMA.
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.