Our XM review looks at all the key XM features
- Trading Account Types, Spreads
- Trading Conditions and Execution
- Negative Balance Protection
- Regulation and Protection
- Trading Platforms
- CFD Product Range
- Free Features and Education
- Customer Support
- Account Fees and Funding
Trading Account Types: Low Minimum Deposits and No Commission Options
XM account structures are great for all traders but are well-suited to beginner traders as they are commission-free, require a low minimum deposit, allow micro lot trading and include negative balance protection.
XM offers 4 types of accounts, these are:
- XM Micro Account
- XM Standard Account
- XM Ultra-Low Account (Australia, South Africa and selected countries)
- XM Zero (Europe only)
|Micro account||Standard Account||Ultra Low Account (Australia and select countries)||Zero Account (The UK and Europe Only)|
|Base currency options||USD, EUR, GBP, JPY, CHF, AUD, HUF, PLN, RUB||USD, EUR, GBP, CHF, AUD, HUF, PLN, RUB||EUR, USD, GBP, AUD, PLN, HUF||USD, EUR, JPY|
|Contract size||1 Lot = 1000||1 Lot - 100,000||Standard Ultra: 1 Lot = 100,000|
Micro Ultra: 1 Lot = 1000
|1 Lot = 100,000|
|Leverage||1:1 to 1:500 ($5-$20,000|
1:1 to 1:200 ($20,001-$100,000)
1:1 to 1:100 ($100,001+)
|1:1 to 1:500 ($5-$20,000|
1:1 to 1:200 ($20,001-$100,000)
1:1 to 1:100 ($100,001+)
|1:1 to 1:500 ($5-$20,000|
1:1 to 1:200 ($20,001-$100,000)
1:1 to 1:100 ($100,001+)
|Negative balance protection||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Spread on all majors||As low as 1 pip||As low as 1 pip||As low as 0.6 Pips||From 0.1|
|Commission||No||No||No||$3.5 per $100,000|
|Maximum open/pending orders per client||200 Positions||200 Positions||200 Positions||200 Positions|
|Minimum trade volume||0.01 Lots (MT4)|
0.1 Lots (MT5)
|0.01 Lots (MT4)|
0.1 Lots (MT5)
|Standard Ultra: 0.01 Lots|
Micro Ultra; 0.1 Lots
|Lot restriction per ticket||100 Lots||50 Lots||Standard Ultra: 50 Lots|
Micro Ultra: 100 Lots
Differences Between Accounts
The main difference between each account is the allowable trading size. The micro account is designed for cent trading with Standard account is designed for conventional volumes.
XM Micro Account
The XM Micro Account allows trading with micro-lots (1000 units). With this account 1 micro lot (pip) is the equivalent of USD 10 cents. This account is commission-free.
- If you wish to trade with nano lots (100 units) then you can reduce your trade volume to 0.1 with the micro account (as nano account is 1/10th the size of a micro lot). Nano lots are the equivalent of 0.01 cents
- If you wish to trade with mini lots (10,000) then you can increase your trade volume to 10 micro-lots (10 x 1000 units) with the micro account (as micro-lots are 1/10th the size of a mini lot). Trading with mini lots is equal to $1
A micro account is popular with the following types of traders
- Traders whose account is not large enough to tolerate larger lot sizes
- Traders that want more precision with their position sizing
- Traders wanting to practice with low volumes rather than use a demo account
When you start out trading it can be wise to start with nano lots before progressing to micro and then mini lots. The more currency you invest, the more risk you take on so it can be prudent to build up your skills before using larger lot sizes.
XM Standard Account
The XM Standard Account allows trading with Standard lots (100,000 unit). With this account 1 lot = USD $10. This is a spread only account.
- If you wish to trade with mini lots then reduce your standard account volume to 0.1 (ie. 0.1 x 10,000 units)
XM Ultra-Low Account (Not available in Europe)
This is a commission-free account available in Australia, South Africa and some other select countries. The account allows trading with both micro and standard lots. The Ultra-Low Account differs from the Micro and Standard accounts in the following ways:
- A higher minimum deposit of $50 for XM Ultra-low account as opposed to $5 for the micro and standard accounts
- Fewer base currency options: This account permits the following base currencies EUR, USD, GBP, AUD, CHF, PLN, HUF. Other accounts offer the same but also JPY and RUB
- Tighter spreads compare to the other XM account. Spreads with the Ultra-low account starts at 0.6 as opposed to 1 pip with other accounts. This difference can represent a significant saving for each trade you do
XM Zero Account (Europe and the UK only)
Traders joining XM in Europe and the UK will be signed up to either Trading Point of Financial Instruments Limited (Cyprus) or Trading Point of Financial Instruments UK Limited (UK). These XM entities do not offer the XM Ultra-Low Account. Instead, they offer the commission-based XM Zero Account. This account is different from the other accounts as they are based on an STP/ECN execution model rather than a market maker model.
Instead of wider spreads to cover brokerage fees, clients pay as a commission of $3.50 ($7.00 round trip) per $100,000 for each standard lot traded.
- If you are using MT4 platform then the commission fee for both opening and closing when you open your position
- If you are using the MT5 platform the commission is applied when you open your position and when you close your position
Spreads with the XM Zero account are therefore lower than with other accounts.
The main limitation with the Zero account is the limited base currency options and the higher minimum deposit of $100.
Spread comparison between accounts
Of the spread-only accounts, The Micro Account and Standard Account spreads are wider than the Ultra-Low Account. Traders can expect spreads on these accounts to be roughly 1 pip higher on average. These means each trade you can expect to pay $10 more. If you are a frequent trader this difference can add up over time.
Traders in Europe and the UK don’t have the option of an Ultra-Low Account but do have the Zero Account which has a different cost structure. On Average, the pip difference between the Ultra-Low Account and the Zero Account is about 7 pips. The round-trip commission is $7.00 so the cost is about the same.
|XM Accounts Average Spreads||EUR/USD||USD/JPY||GBP/USD||USD/CHF||USD/CAD||AUD/USD|
|Ultra Low Account||0.00008||0.009||0.00011||0.00011||0.00012||0.00011|
|Zero Account (Europe Only)||0.00001||0.004||0.00003||0.00004||0.00005||0.00004|
Comparing the spreads with other brokers
No Commission Spreads
XM has 3 types of commission-free accounts. These are Micro, Standard and Ultra-Low Accounts. Spreads for the Micro and Standard Accounts are the same. In the table below you will notice that the Micro and Standard accounts fare poorly when compared with other brokers. While this may make sense for the Micro account given you are trading lots with cents meaning XM may have widened the spread as profit obtained through this account for them would below, it is surprising spreads for the Standard Account are not tighter.
Spreads for XMs Ultra-low account fare pretty well against other brokers with IC Markets the best. Depending on the currency pair, some spreads match spreads for the best pairs from other brokers. Across the board, spreads are somewhere between the matching the best and middle rung.
No Commission Account Spreads
The Zero Account which is commission-based account using ECN style pricing and only available to XM clients in Europe and the UK fare decently against other brokers. With many currency pairs matching the best or close to the best.
Commission Account Spreads
Tiered Leverage: In some regions, XM has a tiered leverage policy. This means the higher volume you trade, the lower your maximum leverage will be. This encourages responsible trading as the high leverage with high volumes means high risk. Leverage will vary depending on the XM entity you trade with and their regulator. Tiered leverage isn’t necessary when a regulator only allows low levels of leverage to being with.
|Trading Point of Financial Instruments UK Limited||FCA||United Kingdon||1:30|
|Trading Point of Financial Instruments Limited||CySEC||Cyprus||1:30|
|Trading Point of Financial Instruments Pty Ltd||ASIC||Australia||1:1 to 1:500 ($50 – $20,000)|
1:1 to 1:200 ($20,001 – $100,000)
1:1 to 1:100 ($100,001 +)
|Trading Point MENA Limited||DFSA||Dubai|
|XM Global Limited||IFSC||Belize||1:1 to 1:888 ($50 – $20,000)|
1:1 to 1:200 ($20,001 – $100,000)
1:1 to 1:100 ($100,001 +)
If you are trading from outside Europe, Australia and Dubai then you can have leverage as high as 1:888
The commission-free accounts are great options for beginner traders. If you are in a region that offers XM Ultra-Low account then this account is likely to be the account you would want to choose. With lower spreads and the same choices of trading lots as the Micro and Standard Account, this account presents the best value. The only reason to choose the Micro or Standard Account is if you want a rock bottom minimum deposit or if you wish your base currency to be JPY or RUB.
If your trading from the UK or Europe and cost-saving is your main concern then the Zero account offers the tightest spreads. The main catch with choosing the Zero account is the higher minimum deposit of $100 and the limited base currency choices being only USD, EUR and JPY.
The overall rating is based on review by our experts
Trading Conditions: Fast Execution, No Requotes, No Rejections
One of the key selling points of XM is they don’t provide requotes and guarantee fills will be completed for orders with less than 50 standard lots. XM advertise that they offer 100% of orders with 99.35% orders executed in under 1 second.
When trading with XM, your positions remain open until they can be filled including pending orders and you can have a maximum 200 orders open at one time.
Tight spreads only make sense if you can trade on them. In this respect, the XM mission is to provide the best execution possible.
XM No Requote Guarantee
XM guarantee of no requotes is interesting as they are a market maker. A requote in forex lingo means the price you have entered cannot be completed as market conditions between the time you received your quote and the time you executed your order. This change in price due to lag time is known as slippage. When liquidity providers are unwilling to match your order, either a requote needs to be provided which happens when instant execution is applied or ‘best available’ price is automatically applied which is known as market execution. Instant and market execution are terms most familiar with ECN and STP No Dealing desk brokers.
As XM is a market maker rather than a no dealing desk broker, XM owns the liquidity and is your counterparty for your trades. So that XM can give you the most accurate pricing possible and avoid requotes, the XM network runs with very fast execution speeds. Fast execution speeds mean less lag and therefore less opportunity for slippage, this allows XM to display prices in real-time and execute your orders quickly. To ensure you receive the most accurate price possible XM uses fractional pip pricing. Should prices change, market execution using the best available price in place of a requote will be applied.
During times of high market volatility, re-quotes tend to be frequent. XM guarantee of no requote makes them stand out among other brokers during such climates.
Guaranteed Fills – 100% Execution rate, No rejection of orders
As XM is a market maker, they guarantee complete fills of your orders up to 50 standard lots (5,000,000). Using an ECN or STP broker means dealing directly with the liquidity market where liquidity providers can reject your order if they can’t meet the price or they don’t have the volume to complete the order.
As a market maker, XM ensures they have enough liquidity on hand at all time so that they can honour your order. As long as your order doesn’t exceed 50 standard lots then you can expect your order to be completed. If your order exceeds 50 standard lots then XM will use partial fills should the order not be completed as one. Placing two orders less than 50 lots is another option.
Placing orders online or by Phone
XM provides some flexibility when it comes to placing orders. While online orders will form the bulk of transactions, should your online system go down, XM give the option of providing order by phone, which may be useful in times of emergency.
Negative Balance Protection Provided by the XM Group
XM includes guaranteed negative balance protection with all accounts. This guarantee means that your will never need to repay any debt from your account going below zero. A number of measures are in place to help protect your account balance, these are
- 50% call margin – When your account is below 50% you will be advised to exit your positions or top up your account
- 20% Stop out level – when your account is below 20%, XM will attempt to exit your open trades
While XM will try to exit your open trades, slippage can still occur meaning you account can still go below zero. If this happens, negative balance protection is applied. This means XM will return your account back to $0 and your debt will be forgiven.
Negative balance protection can help protect traders from accusing bad debt in a volatile market which may come about due to lack of experience or unexpected extreme market conditions
Trading with a Regulated Broker
XM accepts clients from all over the world and is overseen by well-respected financial authorities such as ASIC, CySEC and the FCA. While financial regulation is much stricter in jurisdictions such as the UK and Cyprus, all traders and account types, regardless of location, receive a level of investor protection via XM’s negative balance protection.
Investor Compensation Schemes
Although negative balance protection ensures traders cannot end up in debt to the broker, insurance and compensation schemes imposed by CySEC and the FCA protect traders in the case XM becomes insolvent.
Retail clients registered with the CySEC regulated XM subsidiary are covered by the Investor Compensation Fund (ICF). Cyprus’ ICF ensures that if a CySEC regulated broker becomes insolvent and cannot return funds owed a client, the trader can claim up to €20,000 as compensation. Similarly in the United Kingdom, under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), those trading with FCA regulated brokers are provided up to £85,000.
At this stage, ASIC and the IFSC do not enforce or provide any compensation schemes to protect retail investor accounts in the case that their broker becomes insolvent.
Additionally, most financial regulators including ASIC, IFSC, CySEC and the FCA require all licensed brokers to segregate client funds from company funds, ensuring traders account balances are not used as operational capital.
A full list of the Tier-1 Regulators that XM subsidiaries are overseen by include:
- The Australian Securities Investments Commission (ASIC)
- The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)
- The Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC)
- The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA)
- The International Financial Services Commission (IFSC) in Belize – traders not belonging to any of the above-regulated territories will be regulated by IFSC
Both MT4 and MT5 are known as the gold standard of forex and CFD trading platforms as they offer advanced automated trading features and technical analysis tools.
The key difference between the two platforms is market access. MT4 is primarily a forex trading platform while MT5 is a multi-asset platform that permits Share CFD trading. As well as a wider CFD product range, MT5 provides certain improvements over its predecessor in regards to trading and analysis tools.
Although a range of asset classes are accessible via MT4, the trading platform is a good option for those wanting to develop strategies that focus on forex trading. With advanced analysis and algorithmic trading tools, traders can execute sophisticated trading strategies that are completely automated.
MT4 users can automate trading using Expert Advisors (trading robots). As well as scanning markets for potential investment opportunities, EAs can be used to automatically open and close trades following a trader’s set of predetermined parameters. Traders can write their own EAs using the MQL4 programming language, or alternatively download free or paid EAs from the MetaTrader Marketplace online. To test Expert Advisors, trading strategies can be backtested against historical data. While backtesting allows traders to optimise automated trading strategies, MT4 only offers single currency backtesting.
In addition to fully functional algorithmic trading with Expert Advisors, traders using MT4 gain access to the following benefits and tools:
- Four order types to manage the high risk of forex and CFD trading: sell limit, sell stop, buy stop and buy limit orders
- 30 inbuilt technical indicators, 41 objects and 9 timeframes to analyse markets and detect trends
MT5 is a multi-asset trading platform where XM customers can gain access to over 300 Share CFDs as well as Forex and other CFDs. While MT4 is still the most widely used platform for retail traders, MT5 offers certain enhancements such as more sophisticated backtesting, technical analysis tools and risk management tools.
Rather than MQL4, MT5 traders use the more efficient MQL5 to write and develop Expert Advisors. As well as an easier-to-learn programming language, MT5 also offers improved backtesting, analysis tools and a greater range of order types:
- Expanded risk management tools with an additional two order types: buy stop limit and sell stop limit orders
- A greater range of preinstalled technical analysis tools with 38 indicators, 44 objects and 21 timeframes
- Multi-currency, multi-thread backtesting allows for improved backtesting and more robust EAs
- Fundamental analysis tools including an inbuilt economic calendar
MetaTrader 4 MetaTrader 5 General availability Common Growing Number of Analytical tools 33 68 Number of indicators 30 38 Timeframes 9 21 Programming Language (for expert advisors) MQL4 MQL5 Number of orders executable 3 4 Number of pending orders available 4 6 Partial Order Filling Policies No Yes Order Fill Policy Fill or Kill Fill or Kill
Immediate or Cancel
Hedging Yes Yes (since 2016) Threading 32bit / 2GB 64 Bit / 4Gb Speed / Stability Fast / Stable Faster / More Stable CFD Trading Decentralised All (Decentralised and trading exchanges) Strategy Tester Single Thread Multi-threaded
+ Real ticks
Economic Calendar with Add on Yes Depth of Market No Yes
App and Mobile Trading
XM offers MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 with versions of the software available for PC, Mac, Webtrader, iPhone, iPad, Android and Android tablets.
The online broker’s mobile apps offer a fully functional trading environment. When compared to the webtrader and desktop platforms, mobile users face no restrictions on order types or market access.
Range Of Markets: Trade 1000+ CFDs
The online broker offers great market access to retail investor accounts with over 1,250 CFD trading products available to choose from.
Whether you want to focus on the most commonly traded currency pair (EUR/USD) or develop strategies using minor and exotic fx pairs, the XM group offers a great access forex markets with no commission fees and low spreads.
While many of the best brokers charge traders a commission fee for stock CFD trading, XM provides commission-free commodity and share trading. The required margin and maximum leverage vary between asset classes and instruments and depends on the XM subsidiary you are trading with.
XM provides access to the following financial markets:
|CFD type||Number of symbols/pairs|
|Stocks||1144 In Total|
469 on NYSE + NASDAQ
165 on LSE
20 on ASX
17 on FWB
10 on EuroNext
|Equity Indicies||18 Cash Indices|
12 Futures Indices
Please note forex, equity indices, commodities, energies and precious metals are available on both MT4 and MT5, while stock CFDs are only accessible on MT5. Unfortunately, XM does not offer Cryptocurrency trading on MT4 or MT5.
Free Features: Account Manager, Education and Market Analysis
XM offers an extensive range of free features to ensure you have successful trading experience with them. Key features include personal account managers, webinars and trading tools.
Personal Account Manager
All XM clients are allocated a personal account manager who is available to assist you with any account or trading question you may have. XM personal account managers have a reputation for ensuring their clients get the best from their trading activities.
XM Live is a new webinar service, which (at no cost) provides a live discussion room with XM experts, sharing information between traders regarding trading fundamentals, education webinars and live debates between traders & broker.
XM Tradepedia is a free video series providing Forex education to traders. Their trading education lessons include:
- Introduction to the markets
- Trading essentials
- Fundamental analysis
- Technical analysis
- Money management
- Trading psychology
- Trading strategies
The purpose of Tradepedia is that XM believes with the correct guidance, anyone can successfully trade.
Scheduled webinar instructors are a unique, impressive service offered by XM – offering 1 7 days a week scheduled trading webinars, with 49 instructors in 19 languages. This is offered as part of XM’s Tradepedia Forex education.
Live Forex seminars are scheduled seminars to meet with other traders (and potentially brokers) presented by their Portfolio manager Avramis Despotis, who teaches about the financial markets. The desired outcome from seminars is to spot changes in volatility, trading the intraday swings, using volatility to spot the best trades during the day, combining correct time frames and using a clearly defined set of rules to confidently trade.
Market Research and Analysis
- Market Research: an index of news updates regarding the financial markets, updated every day.
- Technical analysis: provides a technical report from XM directly, to provide traders with information on potential market changes or volatility.
XM Trading Tools
XM Forex Calculator is a set of simple online calculators to convert currency, spreads, commissions, margins, swaps or a profit/loss.
Exclusive technical indicators are a series of digital resources to use in conjunction with either an MT4/MT5 account.
Trading indicators are an add-on script, which interprets graphical information as an overlay to charts; to act as a visual indicator to traders when analysing the current market trends. Their exclusive technical indicators include:
- Ribbon indicator which is used for following the prevailing trend and predicting potential reversals
- River indicator which is an all-in-one trend indicator that helps you identify strengths and direction
- Ichimoku indicator which us useful to identify support and resistance levels and help you recognise strong market trends
- Bollinger Bands to display market volatility and recognises extreme price levels
- ADX and PSAR indicators to recognise a consolidated market and identifies when trends reach extreme conditions
- Analyser indicator so you can analyse markets in seconds instead of hours and quickly identify the best instruments to trade
XM traders can get in touch with the broker’s customer service team via phone, live chat and email. Although a good range of contact methods are offered by XM, phone, live chat and email support is not available on weekends and restricted to 24 hours a day, 5 days a week.
XM’s customer support team are multilingual, with representations fluent in English, Japanese Chinese, Hindi, Arabic, Spanish, Italian, French, Russian, Hungarian, Portuguese, Czech, Slovakian, Bulgarian, Romanian, Dutch, Korean, Bahasa Indonesia and Bahasa Malay.
Account Funding and Fees
To deposit funds in an XM trading account, clients can use credit cards (Visa and Mastercard), debit cards, bank transfers, Western Union or e-wallet methods such as Moneybookers, Skrill, Neteller, MuchBetter Wallet, Trustly and Moneygrams.
To start trading with XM, an initial minimum deposit of $5 is required for Micro and Standard accounts and $50 for Ultra-Low accounts. When funding an established trading account, no minimum deposit is required, although certain e-wallet payment methods require a minimum of $5.
A downside to XM is its withdrawal fees for small sums. If a customer withdraws less than $200 from their trading account via bank wire transfer, they will incur a $15 administration fee. Additionally, XM only allows you to withdraw the amount you have deposited with a credit card or electronic wallets, therefore you can only withdraw trading profits via bank transfer.
While many brokers start charging clients account inactivity fees after 6-12 months, XM traders who have not traded for 90 days will be charged a monthly inactivity fee of $5.
Is XM a reliable broker?
Yes, XM is considered a reliable online broker due to its oversight by top-tier financial authorities such as CySEC (Cyprus), ASIC (Australia) and the FCA (UK).
For a list of our recommended regulated brokers see Best Forex Brokers
Is XM an ECN broker?
No, XM is a market maker broker and therefore orders are filled internationally with XM’s own liquidity (not via external liquidity providers, as no dealing desk brokers do). However, traders with XM in Europe have the option of the ZM Zero account which has the option of ECN style pricing with no commissions.
How do I deposit money on XM broker?
Funds can be deposited into trading accounts through XM’s Members Area on the XM.com website or using the online brokers mobile trading apps.
Is XM a dealing desk broker?
Yes, as a market maker, XM uses a dealing desk to fill orders. As orders are matched internally, XM is the counterparty to your trade.
Is XM a binary broker?
No, XM does not offer Binary Options. Asset classes that can be traded as an XM customer include forex as well as CFDs derived from share, commodity, stock index, precious metal and energy asset classes.
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.