IG is one of the largest forex brokers in the world with low spreads and a range of trading platforms while easyMarkets has fixed spreads, negative balance protection, guaranteed stop losses but a very strong suite of risk management tools ideal for new CFDs traders.
Comparing the spreads of these market makers one can see that IG (formerly IG Markets) spreads are more narrow. While low spreads can be a good reason to choose a forex broker, it helps to understand why the spreads differ for each broker.
Fixed vs Variable Spreads.
Variable or floating spreads are spreads that do not have locked ‘ask’ and ‘bid’ prices. These quotes will vary depending on supply and demand for the currency pair.
Fixed spreads are spreads that do not change. The difference between the changing ‘bid’ and ‘ask’ price is always the same. These spreads don’t typically change except in an extremely volatile market.
IG uses variable spreads for most of their currency pairs. So while minimum spreads will generally be lower than easyMarkets (as shown in our comparison) they can potentially also be higher.
easyMarkets differs from IG because they use fixed spreads. This broker is unusual because historically they have not widened their spreads regardless of market conditions. Even in January 2015, when the Swiss National Bank unexpectedly stopped keeping the Swiss Franc at exchanged rates in line with the Euro resulting in a 40% fall in the valuation of the euro to the franc or a drop in 2000 pips for CHF/EUR easyMarkets held their fixed rates.
If you want the tightest available spreads then consider Pepperstone who offer Electronic Communication Network (ECN) no dealing desk rather than Market Maker dealing desk type trading.
Inclusions in your trade
easyMarkets have several notable inclusions built into their spreads that are included for all trades that IG do not.
Guaranteed Stop Loss
Complementary (not with MT4)
Optional with fee
Guaranteed Take Profit
Complementary (not included MT4)
Optional with fee
Guaranteed Negative Balance Protection
Freeze Rate - complementary
Points Through Current with fee
Yes - with fee
Rolling / Overnight Fees
No (included in spread)
Yes (if you hold you position overnight)
No Slippage guarantee (not with MT4)
Can occur resulting in your position being rejected
Forwards / Hedging
Only with MT4 platform
See our risk management comparison to understand each of these risk management tools.
Conclusion – What type of trader are you will determine which account is for you
IG might be the broker for you if:
You want decent spreads from a market maker and
Require risk management tools on an occasional basis
You want a lower minimum deposit
Trader types that might fit this profile are those with some trading experience but don’t consider themselves experts. It can also benefit traders that know their trading climate is likely to occasionally volatile.
easyMarket might be the broker for you if:
You are new to trading or lack trading experience
You have a need for risk management features
To simplify costs as most benefits are included in the spreads (note: neither broker charge commission)
easyMarkets offer one of the more complete suites of risk management features in the online broker market. The great thing is many of these risk management tools are included with all your trades. This explains why the spreads are wider when we compare with IG. If you are new to trading and want to manage your trading risks or am trading in very volatile climate then easyMarkets might suit your broker requirements.
easyMarkets offer a choice of different accounts. These choices will vary depending on if you are in Europe or outside of Europe.
Clients in the UK and Europe
If you are a retail client from the UK or Europe then you only have one account to choose from. This is their VIP account.
Clients outside the UK and Europe
If you are outside the UK and Europe then you have a choice of accounts to choose from. The higher your minimum deposit, the better your spreads will be.
IG, on the other hand, offer basic types of account. Standard and Professional. This review is only focused on the Standard as Professional has restrictive requirements for eligibility such as minimum $2.5million in net assets.
The standard account offers the following
Leverage – easyMarkets vs IG
The ability to use leverage is important when it comes to trade. Currency prices typically only change incrementally on day to day basis which can make it difficult to make a significant profit. The ability to use leverage to trade a large number of assets will allow you to greatly amplify your profits and therefore make trading forex worthwhile.
As leverage means taking on debt, it is important to understand the risks with high leverage and speculative trading and therefore be responsible when you trade. If you have done your research and tested your trading strategies and am confident in positive outcomes then leverage is a very useful took.
Leverage with easyMarkets will vary depending on which regulator applies to your region and which trading platform you are using. Retail clients in the UK and Europe will find they have more restrictive leverage than clients in the UK ad Europe
Clients from the UK and Europe leverage
easyMarkets is regulated by CySEC or the Cyprus Securities Exchange Commission in the UK and Europe. Retail clients can trade with a maximum leverage of 30:1.
If your trading portfolio exceeds €500,000 and you have averaged at least 10 trades for each quarter over the previous 12 months then you can apply for a professional-client account. A professional account means you will have more generous leverage.
easyMarkets clients outside the UK and Europe
If you are an easyMarkets client from outside the UK or Australia then easyMarkets apply protections in according with ASIC which the Australian Securities and Investment Commission.
Below table summarises the leverage for each region
Like with easyMarkets, IG leverage will vary depending on where you join from as regulation differs for different countries.
Retail Leverage (Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and most other regions)
Professional Leverage (Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and most other regions)
Retail Leverage (Europe and the UK)
Professional Leverage (Europe and the UK)
Energies 1:29 to 1.:67 Gold 1:200 Other metals 1:19 to 1:50 Softs - 1:29 to 1:50
Energies 1:28 - 1:36 Other metals 1:23 to 1:63 Softs - 1:36 to 1:63
This broker offers a choice of two platforms. This their proprietary platform and MetaTrader 4.
easyMarkets Platform – Web and Mobile.
The main reason to choose the easyMarkets trading platform is to access the exclusive of risk management tools easyMarkets offer. While this platform covers all the basic and necessary features a broker would expect from any platform nowhere else can you find ‘dealCancellation’, ‘Freeze Rate.’
Key features of their platform include:
‘Inside Viewer’ – easyMarkets were on the first to include market sentiments tools in the platform,
‘Market Explorer’ – This is a list of all the assets easyMarkets offer and trading key details. The feature makes it easy to select the assets and add to your trading platform.
‘Live Rate Graphs – Graphs that can help you analyse forex movements
‘Financial Calendar’ – a summary of all major market events
MetaTrader 4 (MT4)
MetaQuest makes the two platforms we recommend. These are MetaTrader 4 and 5. At this stage easyMarket and IG only offer MetaTrader 4. More brokers offer MT4 than any other platform so it is no surprise this platform is the most popular with traders as a result.
MT4 is well known for its interface which is easy to use, tools that can assist with fast execution, its range of chart options and ability to work with Expert Advisors (EAs).
IG Trading Platforms
Below is a summary of the platforms that IG provide.
IG offers a choice of more platforms than most other brokers offer. IG proprietary trading platform is available for web and browser. The platforms most notable feature is its ability to offer basic risk management features such as stop loss and profit limits. This platform is an award-winning platform and offers a great collection of charts and indicators however does not offer ‘Expert Advisors’. If you wish to use EAs then consider MetaTrader 4. If you wish to access more charts then you may opt to use ProRealTime. This is available free provided you meet minimum trade requirements each month. Given you can use ProRealTime with MT4 there is little reason to use ProRealTime on its own. The last platform, L2 Dealer is only for professional traders with a Forex Direct account. So is unlikely to be a consideration for most traders.
Conclusion – easyMarkets vs IG
Which platform you go with is mostly a case of personal preference and what tools you want access to. Both brokers offer MetaTrader 4 which is the platform we recommend so it simply comes down to which broker you prefer. On the other hand, if you desire risk management tools then you need to decide which risk features you desire and choose the appropriate platform.
easyMarkets offer a great collection of free and optional risk management features.
Complementary and Free
Guaranteed Stop Loss – all trades include a guarantee you will not lose more than your loss tolerance.
Guaranteed Negative Balance Protection – easyMarkets guaranteed you will not go into debt. If your account goes into negative then it will return to zero.
Freeze Rate – This exclusive feature to easyMarkets allows you to freeze the bid/ask (market) price for a few moments while you decide on your position. This ensures you don’t miss the small window of opportunity to grab your chosen position.
Optional Risk Management Tools
dealCancellation – This exclusive feature to easyMarkets allows you to buy a 60-minute window that allows you to cancel your position if price movements are unfavourable.
IG also offer some risk management tools. All which incur a fee
Guaranteed Stop Loss – this is the same as easyMarkets but you need to activate it and pay a small fee.
Limit Risk Account – You may opt to have your account set to ‘Limit Risk’. This simply means you must purchase a guaranteed stop loss for all your trades.
Points Through Current – If variable spreads change as you select your deal, IG will place your order as long as it is within the tolerance limit you have selected. The high the tolerance, the more you will pay.
Conclusion – easyMarkets vs IG
easyMarkets offer a better range of risk management tools. Not only do they offer more choices but most of them come complementary. This is because they are inclusive in your spread and this is reflected in the higher spreads.
Contracts for Difference (CFDs) – easyMarkets vs IG
easyMarket offer a small range of CFDs in addition to forex. These include cryptocurrencies, metals, commodities and indices.
IG on the other hand, offer a far more extensive range of CFDs. Not only are there more asset classes to choose from by more choices within the asset class. Asset classes include everything easyMarkets offer plus shares, bonds, options, IPO, interest rates, sectors, Exchange-traded funds and exchange-traded products.
Conclusion – easyMarkets vs IG
IG is an all in one broker who aim to make it easy for traders to trade in all sorts of derivatives. easyMarkets primarily a forex broker who also offer some other CFD options.
Bonus Offers – easyMarkets vs IG
This broker has 3 promotions which will be of interest when signing up for an account.
First deposit bonus – You will receive a 20% bonus with your first deposit. To receive this offer you must call your easyMarkets relationship manager and quote ‘First Deposit’.
Refer a friend – if you bring a friend to sign up with easyMarkets then you can receive trading credit. The more your friend deposits the larger your credit will be
Partnership Programme – easyMarkets have an affiliate program for those with the necessary channels to promote easyMarkets.
This broker offers the following promotions:
Refer a friend – You will receive 1 credit for each friend you refer. The more friends you earn you refer, the more you will receive in credits.
Conclusion – easyMarkets vs IG
easyMarkets give a bonus simply for signing up and trading with them so unless you intend to refer lots of friends to join with the broker, its likely easyMarkets will be your choice.
easyMarkets offer customer support 24/5 with the Australian week commencing 8 am Mondays. The support team are located in Australia (Sydney) and Cyprus. You can reach the support team through several ‘unique’ features such as Messenger and Viber and WhatsApp in addition to the usual live chat, email and fax.
easyMarkets also offer a good range of educational material. Available features include:
Get Started – Here one can learn about the fundamentals of trading, trading terms to be familiar with and how to set up an easyMarkets account. Most of these features are in video format.
Discover – This is a video series that covers the most popular trading instruments easyMarkets offer.
Free eBooks – 10 eBooks are available for download that cover topics ranging from trading to technical analysis and how to use their platforms.
Knowledge Base – Here you can find straightforward explanations to common topics.
FAQ – This section provides answers to commonly asked questions from clients.
easyMarkets also provide market analysis. Here you can find the following:
Markets News – live feeds of the latest and most important events on the market.
Trading Charts – here charts are available so you can analyse currency movements.
Live Currency Rates – This is a table showing all currency rates.
Financial Calendars – This feature advises you on policy changes and impacts they have on the market.
Trading Hours – Here you can find out about open and close times of markets in different regions.
Forex News Blog – This blog keeps you up to date on forex news around the world.
Lastly, easyMarkets give you access to a demo account. Their demo account does not expire and includes $15,000 in virtual currency. The demo account includes access to the risk management tools easyMarkets offer.
Customer Support – IG
IG offers customer support nearly 24/7. The hours on Saturdays ends at 8 am and recommences at 3 pm (AEDT). IG support team are available via phone, email, live chat and interestingly via twitter. Support can be found in 14 different countries including Australia.
IG also has a peer support forum which allows the IG community to support each other with all things trading.
Most of IG learning tools can be found through their IG Academy. The Academy includes the following:
Online trading courses – 8 step by step courses are available covering beginner level through to advanced. The course is made up of videos, quizzes and interactive exercises.
Live Sessions – These are webinars that are run around the clock led by experts trading experts from the IG team and DailyFX. Most webinars run for around 30 minutes. A calendar is available so you can view upcoming events. One notable feature is that there is a mobile app for the IG Academy.
Other education tools include the following
News and Analysis – This is a separate webpage with lots of articles exploring news and discussing trade strategies.
Financial Events – This is a page that brings you the latest important financial events.
Risk Management Education – This page looks at different types of risk and explains how you can manage this.
Glossary – A list of key trading terms
Personal Platform Tour – when you sign up for your account, a personal manager will be able to take you through their platform and guide you with setup.
Signal Centre – Free technical analysis that can help you with timing your trades.
Economic Calendar – A list of data covering different events.
IG have a demo trading account which gives users access to $20,000 of virtual funds. Their account does have a few restrictions for example, you will not experience ‘slippage’ and trades will not be rejected due to size or price.
Conclusion – easyMarkets vs IG
Both brokers offer great customer support and customer services. It is difficult to choose between the two. We like IG academy learning platform as it is well organised. We also like the range of tools available to get the information we need on demand.
Deposits and Withdrawals – easyMarkets vs IG
This broker does not charge any fees for deposits or withdrawals regardless of the transfer method you use. All their available credit/debit cars, online banking and eWallets are free to use. Deposits are instant when using cards and can 1-5 working days when using online banking tools.
Unlike easyMarkets, IG does charge to use some of their funding services. Using a Visa card will result in a 1% fee while using MasterCard will cost you 0.5%. PayPal will also result in a fee of 1%. When using any of these services, you must deposit a minimum of $500 each time you deposit. BPAY and Bank Transfer are free and have no minimum deposits.
Conclusions – easyMarkets vs IG
easyMarkets easily win this area simply because they do not charge for you to deposit or withdrawal. We also like that they have no minimum funding requirements.