FxPro Review 2018

By John A. Jagerson  | January 09, 2018

FxPro offers access to 6 different asset classes and is registered in the UK and Cyprus.

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Overall Rating

3.5/
5.0
Products & Fees
3.5
Trust
2.8
Special Features
1.0
Desktop Experience
4.5
Mobile Experience
4.2
Customer Support
3.8
Research & Insights
4.3
Education
4.0

FxPro Fast Facts

FxPro offers very comprehensive access to the Forex, shares, indices, metals and commodity markets. The company is regulated in the U.K. and registered with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). FxPro is also registered in Cyprus, Dubai, and the Bahamas. Spreads, trading costs, and account fees were about average for the industry. A variety of trading platforms are available including MetaTrader 4 and 5, custom trading applications, and mobile applications. Experienced investors will likely appreciate the no-dealing desk (NDD) execution because of its speed and additional anonymity.

pros

  • Breadth of Trading Products
    FxPro offers trading in Forex, cryptocurrencies, commodities, stock shares, and indices
  • No Dealing Desk Execution
    Orders are executed without intervention from the dealing desk, which should be faster and provides anonymity
  • Registration and Regulation
    FxPro is registered with the FCA in the UK which increases oversight and transparency

cons

  • No Guaranteed Stops
    Even at a higher cost there is no way to guarantee a stop loss order.
  • No Options
    There are no binary or vanilla options available for traders looking for more flexibility.
  • Average Costs and Fees
    While not disproportionately large, trading costs and account fees were merely average for the industry.
6
Asset Classes
280
Trading Instruments
5
Trading Platforms

Products & Fees

3.5

FxPro has average fees and trading costs overall, but some trading markets were more competitive than others. Investors should evaluate FxPro's actual costs based on the instruments or markets that they intend to focus on. A discounted spread+commission structure was available for traders using the cTrader platform, but otherwise the spread was the primary trading cost. Investors can't use guaranteed stop loss orders and the stop-out rate varies between the different platforms. FxPro assesses an inactivity fee that is assessed each month after an account has been idle for six months.

  • EUR/USD
    0.6 pips
  • GBP/USD
    0.9 pips
  • USD/JPY
    0.6 pips
  • S&P 500 CFD
    $0.92
  • Japan 225
    $8.05
  • Oil CFD
    $0.036
  • BTC/USD
    $150
  • Gold
    $0.244
  • Apple Shares
    $0.69

Trust

2.8

FxPro's trust scores suffered slightly in our ratings because of the lack of account protection above and beyond what's required by UK regulators. Traders cannot use custodian banks to hold their capital and there is no guaranteed stop loss protection. The company discloses some data about requotes and slippage, which provides some good perspective for account holders; but ultimately this may not be representative of what traders will experience during periods of extreme market volatility.

Up to GBP 50,000
Default Insurance (If FxPro defaults)
(Possible compensation from FCA's Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCF) for investment losses)
Up to GBP 85,000
Default Insurance (Failed Bank)
(If the custodian bank holding client funds goes into liquidation, may be compensated for under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS))

What you need to know

Account funds are held by FxPro in the UK which is subject to regulation by the Financial Conduct Authority. The amount of protection for each account in the event of default is limited. The funds are held in segregated accounts with UK banks including Barclays, Bank of America, and RBS. FxPro also offers negative balance protection, which is good, but we were a little concerned that this protection is subject to conditions that aren't clearly spelled out in the account agreement.

Special Features

1.0
Special Features

Our rating for FxPro's for special features is low because we didn't find any social or "copy" trading, money manager accounts or free VPS hosting. However, VPS hosting was available for a relatively low cost and there were several other special features we don't include in our standard ratings that are worth another look. Besides backtesting, "expert advisors" (EAs), and auto-trading are available through MT4 and MT5. Also, FxPro's algorithmic trading lab, FxPro Quant Strategy Builder, was intuitive to use and we found it extremely interesting. While we have found consistent limitations with drag-and-drop style backtesting tools, they can be a great sandbox for exploring new ideas before going to the expense and effort of formally building out a model. FxPro's cAlgo program is an advanced toolkit for coding automated trading systems. The toolkit allows traders to conduct tests with greater detail and flexibility than we've seen outside of professional shops. While Quant and cAlgo are probably not tools for beginners, advanced traders or new investors with programming backgrounds may find them to be very useful.

Quant Strategy Builder
Build Automated Trading Strategies
(With Drag-and-drop Interface)
cAlgo
Program Strategies & Trading Robots
cTrader Platform
See Full Depth of Market*
(*for specific trade size planning)
Stop, Loss, & Take Calculator
Streamline Your Risk Analysis

What you need to know

FxPro's special features may technically be lacking in a few areas, but there are several other tools that help make up for this shortfall. Access to a VPS service was available for a moderate fee at the time of this writing. The custom trading applications and MT4/5 can handle backtesting, custom indicators, autotrading and trade robots. The custom tools offered by FxPro were robust and would be very helpful for both new and experienced trade system programmers.

Desktop Experience

4.5
Desktop Platform Experience

FxPro's custom trading application, cTrader, had a fairly standard interface with menus, watchlists, charts, and notifications in a typical layout. The platform handles custom indicators and automated traded through cAlgo. The most compelling feature included with cTrader was the ability to view depth of market. Similar to NASDAQ "level-2" quotes, the sizes of available bids and asks at different prices are viewable, which could be helpful for large traders. It is important to remember that Forex and CFD trading isn't exchange-cleared, so the depth of market view is limited to the information FxPro has available or is willing to display.

Pros

The navigation was unique but at the same time easy to use with familiar menus. Traders can enter complex order types including buy, sell, and trailing stops from watchlist-style menus or directly from the chart. Position sizes are customizable, and defaults were easy to set. The charts were easy to use and included advanced functionality and indicators. We found that integrated research, screeners, social charting, news and calendars to be among the best features in the platform. FxPro executes orders (subject to some conditions) with no dealing desk intervention. Trading on cTrader may have a much tighter spreads, but there is a $45 commission per $1 million traded.

Cons

cTrader was easy to use but a few standard features will still require a learning curve for investors moving from an industry standard platform like MT4. Fixed spreads were not available for trades executed through the platform. Spot index trading did not use dynamic leverage which could be a pro or con depending on your trading style.

Mobile Experience

4.2
Mobile Platform Experience

The mobile version of cTrader includes most of the functionality available in the desktop application. Traders can access FxPro's trading instruments, complex order types, account details, and charting from the Android or iPhone apps. The news feed is also streamable through the mobile app. Like many mobile trading applications there is a lot of detail on a small screen. The tablet version was easy to use; but on a phone, it could be difficult to do much more than monitor positions or make urgent changes.

Pros

The mobile app includes all the functionality to analyze and research trading opportunities. Clients can use advanced order types and track their accounts the same way they would in the desktop app. Users can manage and create watchlists to make the experience more manageable even on a small screen.

Cons

There is no fingerprint security in addition to the login password. We would like to see the app include customizable, automatic sign-out, and verification of login from another device. Although the app was full-featured, the text and design were very dense and could be difficult for some clients to navigate on smaller mobile screens.

Customer Support

3.8

FxPro's customer support is available whenever the markets are open via phone, chat, and email. During our tests, we found that support was very quick to respond, and we didn't have to wait more than one or two minutes for a chat request and phone calls to be answered. If you prefer chat-based support, the feature is available through a persistent link on FxPro's website pages.

What you need to know

We found FxPro's representatives to be very quick to respond and knowledgeable for most simple questions. Our more advanced questions were frequently escalated, which took more time, but it didn't seem unreasonable. Phone support was very fast to pick up a call and it was easy to be connected to the trading desk. The support website also has a good knowledge base and searchable archive that should answer most questions about the trading platforms and order types. Some of the material was a little old, but self-help support was easy to find and use.

Research & Insights

4.3

FxPro scored very well in the research category. Traders can access real-time news feeds, calendars, client sentiment indicators, and advanced data analytics. Trading Central was also available which provides technical reports, trading signals, and alerts for technical analysts. Trading Central could be added as a plugin to FxPro's version of MT4.

Analyst Insights
FxPro's analyst team provides commentary on the live markets
Trading Central
In depth technical analysis reports and alerts
Client Sentiment
Track sentiment and aggregate trading traffic of other accounts
Market Calendar
Identify upcoming and past economic announcements
FxPro Squawk
Listen to real-time breaking news and commentary from "LiveSquawk"
News Feeds
Real-time updates and announcements of the global markets

Pros

FxPro has an above average offering of research and analytical tools. The economic calendar had a high level of detail and included charts of past data, so the trend was easier to evaluate. The FxPro analyst blog was good, but not as frequently updated as we would like to see. Actionable trading information from Trading Central should fill many of the gaps that exist for technical traders. The client sentiment data was interesting, but compared to the level-2 style quotes available in cTrader may not provide additional value.

Cons

Some market analytics, like the Commitment of Traders report, was missing from the research tools. The calendar was good but difficult to navigate because of the way it was embedded in FxPro's screen. The calendar in the trading platforms would probably be easier to use if they offered less detail. Some daily briefs and technical analysis offered by FxPro was good but only available via email subscriptions.

Education

4.0

FxPro's education was comprehensive at the introductory level and as a result they were able to check nearly all of our required boxes in the education category. But there were a few things to note that might not reduce their absolute score but do impact the experience. For example, we found limited advanced material outside of documentation for the algorithmic trading applications. We also found the content difficult to navigate, and it was easy to get sidetracked into support documentation. The look and feel of the education was very different from the rest of FxPro's online presence and much of the content was very dated. On the plus side, many of the educational articles were downloadable in pdf format, which we think many clients will appreciate.

Learn Where to Start
Getting Started Articles and Videos
(Education for new investors about Forex, CFDs, stocks, and spread betting)
Platform Training
Use the Tools the Right Way
(Impressive amount of education on the trading tools and platforms)
Glossary
Understand the terms and language of the Forex
(Easy to use and comprehensive trading glossary for traders learning the markets)

What you need to know

Outside of the education covering the platforms and algorithmic trading tools, the content was fairly basic and quite dated. Despite some disadvantages, the education was adequate for beginning traders, but it could be difficult to plan your route through the content without getting lost. On the plus side, FxPro publishes many of the more recent videos on YouTube, which is convenient for users and helped to check many of the boxes needed to get a good score for education in our review.

Bottom Line

We generally consider registration with the UK's Financial Conduct Authority a plus for traders who need additional transparency and minimal account protection. The trading markets available through FxPro were comprehensive and costs were about average overall. Depending on the markets traders prefer to concentrate on, FxPro may be cheaper than average or more expensive. FxPro offers trading, "Expert Advisors," backtesting, and autotrading through MT4/5, but we also found their proprietary trading platform and strategy building software to be excellent. Traders with experience in the market and programming skills should find a lot of benefit from FxPro's tools. Customer service was also above average and very quick to respond, which is an important quality to consider in any dealer/broker.

John A. Jagerson
Reviewed by John A. Jagerson

  • • 15+ years experience in stocks, options, Forex, bonds and portfolio analysis
  • • Co-founder of Learning Markets, LLC, a leading creator of financial content, analysis, education and tools
  • • Author of four books on investing and portfolio strategies published by McGraw Hill

Experience

John has worked in the capital markets and private equity for most of his career—including investing, writing, education and money management. John has a B.S. in Business Administration from Utah Valley University and completed the PLD at Harvard Business School. John is the coauthor of three books published by McGraw Hill on investing and portfolio management. As a co-founder of Learning Markets, LLC, John has developed financial education used by thousands of brokerage clients to become better investors. His firm also develops professional-grade stock screening and analytical tools for individual investors.

Education

John earned his bachelor's degree in accounting and business management at Utah Valley University.

Professional Designations

John is a Charted Financial Analyst (CFA) and a Chartered Market Technician (CMT).

Quote from John

"Individual investors have goals and objectives beyond wealth accumulation. Investing is only one tool they use to achieve truly great things in their life. I am passionate about helping investors because their success means more than just a larger account balance."

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