It can be pretty confusing trying to find the right broker if you’re just starting out. I’ve put together my top recommendations based on the following criteria:
- Practice Accounts – one of the best ways to learn how to trade forex is by using practice or demo accounts. It’s essential that beginners start with these accounts before using real money
- Minimum Deposit – there’s no point in recommending a broker which requires a $5k deposit. These are obviously targeted towards more experienced investors. So I’ve only chosen brokers with beginner friendly minimum deposits. Although investing with a too small amount is silly, I don’t want to see newer traders blow $5k.
- Interface – I don’t recommend most platforms for beginners because they have horrible designs and hard to use interfaces. These can make trading confusing and potentially lead to mistakes.
- Resources and Educational Tools – A good broker will provide quality educational resources to help traders learn.
My Top Pick – eToro
For people who are new to forex, then eToro will offer you the softest landing. With a custom built, easy to use interface, social trading tools, and reasonable educational resources, its my top pick for beginners.
Interface: eToro doesn’t use the MetaTrader software which most brokers seem to rely on. Instead they have built a custom web and mobile trading platform that beginners will find easy to use.
Practice Account: eToro gives you $50,000 of virtual money to use in their practice accounts. Plenty to practice trading. The account doesn’t expire.
Minimum Deposit: The minimum first time deposit is $200.
Resources: eToro offers daily market updates to keep you up to date with various economic news. They also hold sporadic webinars to discuss various events. They have a fairly detailed resource section with educational materials.
Other things I like: Social trading. You can copy the trades of other more experienced traders to get a better understanding of how forex works.
Easy Markets (previously known as Easy Forex) is a good choice for those looking for a platform without social trading features.
Interface: Easy Markets has a fairly well designed online interface. It’s not as well designed as etoro, but still is easy to use.
Practice Account: It’s called a “trading simulator”. You might need to Google it as it wasn’t easy to find from the home page. It uses the same online platform.
Minimum Deposit: The minimum deposit is $100. This is just about the minimum you should ever start trading with, so this works for beginners.
Other things I like: Easy Markets introduced a “Deal Cancellation” feature which allows you to cancel losing trades without paying anything. You pay a small fee upfront. An interesting idea, and could certainly make your trading more profitable.
I usually recommend XM as the choice for professional traders. I would only recommend you choosing this option if you’re willing to use a MetaTrader Broker.
Interface: XM uses metatrader. They have had a web trader in the past, but it’s not clear if that is still available.
Minimum Deposit: You can get started on XM with as little as $5. Although, that’s not going to get you very far. So basically XM doesn’t have a minimum deposit and you’re free to trade with as little or much as you like.
Resources: Lots of video tutorials, market updates and also webinars. The resources might not be targeted for the absolute beginner.
Other things I like: They have a $1 million trading competition. If you’re a beginner you ain’t gonna win. But it’s something fun to work towards.
If you want to learn more about trading forex, especially as a beginner, I’ve put together this guide on Forex Trading for Beginners which should point you in the right direction. If you’re brand new to trading, then my recommendation is to start with Copy Trading as this will help reduce some of the risk.