A Geneva-based brokerage with comprehensive forex, contract for difference (CFD), and precious metals trading services, Dukascopy is backed by a financial institution founded in 2004. Its proprietary trading platform offers fast executions in 28 EU countries through the wholly owned Swiss Foreign Exchange Marketplace (SWFX), a centralized-decentralized electronic communications network and market created in cooperation with selected banks, institutions, and technological solution providers.
The bank provides trading services to Swiss residents through Dukascopy SA; nonresidents can use Dukascopy Europe. Both entities use the same platform and routing, and both accept accounts as low as $100. An extensive video library presents comprehensive market analysis and trading education, and a robust social network lets clients share ideas and strategies. Contests unrelated to trading are a distraction from an otherwise useful community site, and poorly documented withdrawal procedures and the lack of a security token system undermine an otherwise sound choice for European traders.
Dukascopy makes markets in forex, CFDs, and precious metals in addition to binary options, a poorly regulated market niche. Pricing is competitive with many European sites but well above average compared to North American brokerages. Dukascopy currently offers single-stock CFDs for the United States and 13 EU countries.
Dukascopy is regulated by the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) and provides deposit protection up to CHF 100,000 for Swiss residents through the deposit insurance program esisuisse. Accounts in other European countries receive protection up to EUR 20,000 through the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA). U.S. residents cannot open trading accounts.
Dukascopy provides deposit and security protection through Swiss and EU regulatory authorities but offers no additional private insurance. It publishes biannual Balance Sheet and State of Income reports that should address concerns about liquidity and stability. According to its website disclosures, it provides no credit and holds no risky securities or real estate property. Dukascopy held in excess of CHF 100 million in customer deposits as of June 2017.
Dukascopy has robust news and research resources, and materials can be easily accessed through drop-down checklists. A comprehensive community site enhances trading skills with contests, client analysis, and strategy sharing. Dukascopy TV streams live and pre-recorded market coverage, with clear and concise menu options. The portal features hundreds of educational, tutorial, and market briefs in multiple languages, supported by a search capability that finds relevant materials quickly. Most programming is available in high definition and full screen.
While Dukascopy provides its brokerage customers with an abundance of news and other useful educational resources, its community site includes beauty, modeling, cheerleader, and photo contests as well as a blog containing explicit sexual content.
Dukascopy offers a proprietary full-featured trading platform through standalone software, a Java-enabled web interface, and mobile versions for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone. Clients can also access industry-standard MetaTrader 4 through a third-party bridge.
The platform provides customizable layouts, watchlists, and alerts for all covered markets. News, research, and analysis can be accessed through a drop-down menu. Users can generate classic forex-themed layouts through the contextual Market Overview, featuring large-number format and highlighted pips for rapid order execution. Impressive charting functionality includes a broad variety of indicators, time markers, drawings, retracement tools, and overlays that can be saved as custom templates. Orders can be placed directly on charts while a pattern recognition tool assists in technical analysis and risk management.
News, research, and analysis can be searched by ticker symbol through a separate window, but there's no way to pull up results directly on the watchlist entry. Poor font customization and zoom control may cause eye strain for older clients or those with reading disabilities. Limited color combination themes exhibit below-average light/dark contrast and readability. Many account features direct the user out of the software and onto a web page, making data management more difficult.
Well-organized mobile platforms for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone feature slimmed-down versions of the more comprehensive desktop product, including trading, portfolio, charting, alerts, and analysis screens. Users can access account information, including profit and loss, open positions, equity, and real-time margin. Settings include a variety of slippage control and risk management capabilities.
Customized watchlists and charting layouts are easy to read, despite limited screen space. Users can watch live and pre-recorded Dukascopy TV programming directly through the app. A comprehensive economic calendar features forecast vs. actual data. Strong charting functionality allows access to dozens of technical indicators with one or two clicks. Previous strategies can be easily saved for later access, and the news function has useful search features.
The mobile platform requires a PIN in addition to username and password but offers no external security authentication layer or token. Desktop and mobile platforms can be opened simultaneously, and the lack of a customizable log-off feature adds to security issues. A number of large-cap U.S. CFDs did not display real-time quotes. The Info drop-down is confusing, featuring a blank page, and it's unclear whether the section is meant to display market or user data.
Dukascopy offers 24/6 phone and chat support as well as email messaging and fax. It also provides a call-back service and a web form for issue reporting. Chat support is open to prospective and existing clients.
Dukascopy offers 24-hour phone and chat support during worldwide market hours. Chat support is provided through a website pop-up application that appears on every main page. The site's FAQs, knowledge base, and wiki address most common inquiries and questions. Segmentation between Swiss and other European client services can make it harder to get complete answers on some topics. This is especially true for withdrawal procedures, which are poorly documented.
Research and insight are offered primarily through the Market Info drop-down menu on the main site and through Dukascopy TV. Both portals are well stocked with useful topical and analytical content.
Dukascopy offers an outstanding array of research and insight features, all fully updated. Dukascopy TV is especially impressive, with a trove of analysis and commentary that allows users to spend hundreds of hours building their skills across a broad range of market topics. News functions are well organized for easy access to favorite markets, and sentiment gauges offer valuable proprietary insight.
There's no way to save custom lists of research and insight topics for later viewing or analysis. Most research and insight functions cannot be accessed directly through the trading platform. Market topics are scattered across several sub-portals, forcing users to navigate several drop-down menus to get to materials. Some news functions drill down to full articles, while others display only brief extracts. News services cannot be filtered to reduce high noise levels.
Clients can access a broad variety of educational materials, but the website lacks a dedicated education portal. Most tutorials and lessons are embedded within the larger news, research, and insight sections.
Dukascopy TV provides most of the educational material, supplemented by the social trading portal and drop-down menus. The community site offers educational content but contains material unrelated to trading that potential clients may find off-putting.