International Capital Markets – more commonly known as IC Markets – is one of the world’s largest ECN brokers and is based in Australia.
The company offers traders more than 230 tradable assets, and you’ll find everything from forex and stocks to indices, commodities, cryptos and even a few bonds and futures.
- About IC Markets
- Opening an Account
- How Long Does the Account Creation Process Take?
- What’s the Minimum Deposit?
- Identity and Verification
- Can IC Markets Be Trusted?
- Research and Assistance
- Demo Accounts
- Desktop Experience
- Demo Accounts
- Desktop Experience
- Mobile Experience
- Investment Options
- Commissions and Fees
- Deposits & Withdrawals
I’ll talk more about the investment options later on in this IC Markets review.
The purpose of this review is to give you an honest, impartial look at IC Markets.
I’ll cover all aspects of what the brokerage offers, from looking at the company itself to the process of opening an account and the investment options offered.
I’ll also talk about the trading platforms they offer, as well as deposits and withdrawals and customer support facilities.
IC Markets review was last updated in May 2020. Author – Jonathan Mann.
About IC Markets
IC Markets was first established back in 2007 and the company is headquartered in Sydney, Australia.
They’re one of the world’s largest brokerages, and they claim to have processed more than $646 billion worth of trades in April 2019 alone.
This gives you an indication of just how popular the site is, and how many trades they facilitate each and every day.
With a vast selection of investment options to choose from, the brokerage lends itself well to experienced traders.
However, those looking to try out trading for the first time will also find themselves inundated with choice, and there’s a handy research and education portal perfect for new traders, which I’ll cover later in this IC Markets review.back to menu ↑
Opening an Account
I found three main account types available at IC Markets.
These are the True ECN cTrader, the True ECN MetaTrader and the Standard Account.
They also offer a swap-free account and a demo account, the latter of which I’ll cover in just a moment.
Below, I’m going to take a look at the three different accounts on offer.
True ECN cTrader Account: The True ECN cTrader Account runs on the cTrader trading platform and has a commission of $3 per lot.
The spreads start from 0.0, and you get a leverage of 500:1.
The server is located in London, making it a suitable account for those located in Europe.
You can also place Micro Lot Trades, and there’s a total of 64 currency pairs on offer.
True ECN MetaTrader Account: The True ECN MetaTrader Account is virtually identical to the True ECN cTrader Account.
The only significant difference is that the trading platform used is MetaTrader4 as opposed to cTrader.
Using this account means that you can benefit from CN VPS Cross Connect – but this is something that shouldn’t matter to the vast majority of traders, especially those who are new to the industry.
Standard Account: The Standard Account is the account that the vast majority of new traders will open.
It runs on the MetaTrader4 platform and features all the same benefits as the True ECN MetaTrader Account.
The main difference is that spreads start from 1.0. Leverage remains the same at 500:1
One thing I did find interesting at IC Markets is that you have to pass a vetting process in order to open an account.
This is to comply with ASIC regulatory guidelines. If you’re from Australia, you’ll need to complete the suitability test.
This is a series of 10 questions, and in order for your account to be successfully created you need to score at least 70%.back to menu ↑
How Long Does the Account Creation Process Take?
Setting up an account takes just a few minutes, although the identification verification process can take up to a day.
I’ll talk more about this in just a moment.back to menu ↑
What’s the Minimum Deposit?
IC Markets is one of the few trading platforms that has a set minimum that doesn’t change across all of its accounts.
All three accounts have a minimum starting deposit of $200.back to menu ↑
Identity and Verification
To comply with regulatory guidelines, all traders joining IC Markets need to verify their identity. You will need to prove your name and address.
Acceptable documents include passports and driving licenses for proof of your name, and a utility bill or bank statement for proof of your address.back to menu ↑
Can IC Markets Be Trusted?
IC Markets is heavily regulated, and their primary base is in Australia.
They’re regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) under International Capital Markets PTY Ltd.
They’re also regulated in the Seychelles by the Financial Services Authority (FSA), although they operate under a different business name there, calling themselves True ECN Trading Ltd.
Client funds are segregated in all markets IC Markets operate in, and this ensures that your funds are safe in the event of insolvency.
For example, in Australia they hold their segregated funds with the National Australia Bank and Westpac Banking Corporation. In the Seychelles they hold their segregated funds with Barclays Bank Seychelles.
I have absolutely no doubt that IC Markets are reputable and perfectly safe to trade with.
They have a stellar reputation when it comes to looking after their traders, and I didn’t find many complaints from traders online.
Unfortunately, there’s no investor-compensation scheme in place right now though, but this may well change in the future, especially as the brokerage looks to penetrate new markets.
For example, if they choose to enter the UK (and receive regulatory approval from the FCA) they will have no choice but to adhere to this.back to menu ↑
Research and Assistance
IC Market offers some of the best research I’ve come across during my time reviewing online trading platforms.
Traders of all levels can stay up to date with recent market developments and this is accessible through their “IC Markets Blog”, which is aptly titled the “Information Hub For Serious Traders”. Inside, you’ll find a number of different sections, including Company News, Fundamental Analysis, Technical Analysis, Education and Trading Data.
Let’s take a closer look at the “Trader Education” section, as that’s what I believe is most relevant to this review.
Trader Education is IC Market’s solution to helping new traders get to grips with how forex/CFD trading works, and what you can expect as a new trader.
There are a number of different sections to this educational portal: Forex Trading 101, Technical Analysis 101, Fundamental Analysis 101, Risk Management 101, Trading Psychology 101 and Trading Plan 101.
They’re all designed to take you from a beginner to a competent trader.
All these educational documents are split into various sections.
Let’s take Forex 101 as an example.
You’ll find that you’ll be able to access a number of different blog posts, all detailing different parts of the trading process.
I found these guides incredibly useful and even experienced traders are likely to find useful bits of information here.
It’s also worth keeping an eye on IC Market’s social media accounts, as they often publish interviews, exclusive webinars and other educational resources when they come out.back to menu ↑
It’s easy to set up a demo account at IC Markets, and it takes no longer than a minute or two to get started.
Thankfully, you don’t need to undergo identity verification in order to open a demo account, and you’ll find yourself able to access the site’s full range of investment options using the demo account.back to menu ↑
Like all leading forex sites, IC Markets offers you the chance to use multiple different trading platforms.
These are all optimized for both desktop and mobile, and you’ll find yourself able to use cTrader, cTrader Web, cTrader Algo, MetaTrader4, MetaTrader5, MetaTrader Web and a couple of Apple-specific platforms.
Below, I’ll talk about the two most popular platforms – cTrader and MetaTrader4.back to menu ↑
Interactive Brokers, like all leading online brokers, allow all clients, both new and old, to open a demo account.
This allows you to trade with $100,000 in demo money, and it’s a great way of getting to grips with their trading platform, and how everything works.
Signing up for a demo account is incredibly simple and straightforward, and all you need to do is enter a few personal bits of information and you’re all set.
You can use the demo account for up to 60 days, at which point you’ll be prompted to either transition your demo account to a live trading account, or it will be closed.
I prefer to see demo accounts that can be used for an unlimited amount of time, however 60 days should be sufficient for most people.back to menu ↑
Interactive Brokers has developed their own trading platform, and it’s available to both Lite and Pro account holders – in the past, it was only available to Pro account holders.
The trading platform is incredibly advanced and features a huge array of trading tools and technical features, both of which are designed to make the overall trading experience as straightforward and hassle-free as possible.
One of my favourite parts of the trading platform is the fact that there’s a quick search function.
This is something I see many online brokers simply not offering today, and it allows you to instantly search for different stocks, shares and currency pairs.
It also allows you to place orders and compare various prices, with just a couple of clicks of your mouse button.
I should also point out that their proprietary trading platform is updated in real-time, ensuring you’re always seeing the latest prices and market movements.
A huge feature of the trading platform is the ability to link to other parts of your portfolio too.
For example, you can link external banking, checking, saving and credit card accounts to your Interactive Brokers platform account, giving you a comprehensive overview of your current financial situation across the board.
This is made possible using the PortfolioAnalyst tool, and it’s something I was really impressed with.
MetaTrader4 is one of the most popular trading platforms at IC Markets, and it comes packed with a number of features and benefits, giving you a comprehensive, well-rounded trading experience.
You can use MetaTrader4 if you have a True ECN or Standard Account.
Perhaps the biggest benefit of using MetaTrader4 is the incredibly low-latency and speed at which trades are carried out.
This is all thanks to IC Market’s computer server which is located in the Equinix NY4 data centre in New York.
It’s capable of processing trades in milliseconds, ensuring you’re always up-to-date and trades are made when you want them to be.
MetaTrader4 also doesn’t have any restrictions on trading, and you can also place orders between the spread.
This makes it a perfect platform for traders looking for scalping and high-frequency trades.back to menu ↑
cTrader is another popular trading platform offered at IC Markets, and it too comes packed with features designed to streamline your trading experience.
For example, you’ll get a true ECN on deep liquidity on both currencies and indices, and like MetaTrader4, trades are carried out instantly thanks to the super-fast server which is located in London.
There are, again, no restrictions on trading, and you can place orders between the spread.
You’ll also be able to access the cTrader Smart Stop Out function – like MetaTrader4, this is perfect for traders looking for scalping and those wanting high-frequency trades.back to menu ↑
IC Markets offers its own downloadable app which is available to all iOS and Android device owners. I should note, however, that you need to make sure you’re running the latest iOS or Android version to ensure the app runs smoothly. T
here are reports of the app not working on devices that aren’t running the latest software updates.
I found the mobile app to be pretty good and it runs on the MetaTrader4 and MetaTrader5 trading platforms.
Within the app, you’ll benefit from real time forex and CFD quotes, and this allows you to make trades on the go with the most up-to-date and relevant positions.
You can also place multiple trade orders at once, as well as view your pending orders.
I found around 30 technical trading indicators in total, and I particularly liked the fact that there are multiple timeframes and chart types. This includes bars, candlesticks and line charts.
If you prefer not to download a mobile app you can also access IC Market’s trading platform through your mobile device’s internet browser.
However, I should point out that in doing so you’re not going to benefit from the full mobile trading experience.
I highly recommend you download the mobile app where possible, as it will give you the best possible speeds and ensure a smoother, more streamlined trading experience.back to menu ↑
IC Markets offer quite a substantial range of investment options, designed to suit the vast majority of traders. Forex is the most commonly traded product at IC Markets and they offer some 60 currency pairs to choose from.
This includes major, minor and some exoctic pairs. There’s also a decent number of Share CFDs, including ones from ASX, Nasdaq and NYSE.
This gives you access to some of the world’s biggest companies like BHP Billiton, Disney, Citigroup, Tesla and MSCI Emerging Markets.
I was also happy to see they offer some Index CFDs, and you’ll find 17 to choose from.
This includes the Australia 200, the FTSE China A50, the Germany 50, the Hong Kong 50 and the US Tech 100.
If Commodities are your preferred investment option then you’ll be able to trade more than 19 types, including Brent, coffee, WTI, natural gasses, soybean, sugar and cocoa.
More recently, IC Markets have added cryptocurrencies to their site.
This includes major coins like Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash and Ethereum, along with some of the less well-known coins like EOS and Emercoin.
I was also really impressed to see a few futures and bonds available.
There aren’t many – just four futures and six bonds – but it’s nice to see and shows that IC Markets are passionate about giving their traders the largest variety of investment options possible.back to menu ↑
Commissions and Fees
The commissions and fees you pay while using IC Markets depend on the type of account you choose to register.
Generally speaking, their fees are quite low, especially when compared against other leading online trading platforms.
Below, you can view a breakdown of the fees and commissions at IC Markets:
Inactivity fees apply, as is common with most trading platforms.
However, IC Markets don’t charge inactivity fees until at least one year of inactivity. The exact amount of these fees varies depending on which account you hold.back to menu ↑
Deposits & Withdrawals
One of the things I was really pleased to see at IC Markets is that they offer PayPal as a payment method. This allows you to make instant, fee-free deposits and withdrawals.
Other major payment methods they offer include all major debit and credit cards (VISA and MasterCard), Skrill and Neteller.
Some of the less-common payment methods available include UnionPay, wire transfer, Bpay, FasaPay, broker-to-broker payments, POLI, Thai Internet Banking, Rapidpay, Klarna, Vietnamese Internet Banking and Bitcoin.
Please note though that the exact payment methods available to you can vary depending on which country you’re located in.
You may also need to complete additional verification in order to use certain payment methods.
With the exception of wire transfers, all deposits are credited to your account instantly.
There are also no fees attached to making deposits, which is always good to see.
You’ll find yourself able to deposit and withdraw in a number of different currencies, including GBP, CHF, CAD, HKD, EUR, JPY, USD, NZD and AUD.
Unfortunately, IC Markets aren’t the quickest when it comes to withdrawals.
In my experience (and going by what I’ve read other traders saying online) withdrawals are processed by the brokerage in two to three business days.
You will then need to wait an additional amount of time before the funds actually reach your bank/EWallet account.
However, if you’re using Bitcoin, PayPal, Skrill or Neteller the funds will be available as soon as the broker has approved the withdrawal.
IC Markets also don’t charge any withdrawal fees.
This is notable, and it’s certainly nice to see.
The only exception to this is bank transfers, but even then fees are only applicable in a few select cases.
If you’re interested in viewing a full range of the payment methods that are available to residents in your country, you can head to IC Market’s website and view the “Banking” section.
This will show you all the payment methods available to you, along with any minimum/maximum limits attached to each method.
I’m pleased to report that IC Market offers customer support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so you’ll never have any problems being able to get in touch with the customer support team.
Below, I’ll look at the three main ways in which you can reach the customer support team.
Live Chat: Live chat is the easiest and quickest way of contacting IC Market’s customer support team.
It allows you to speak with a member of the team in real-time, and from my experience using the live chat portal I only needed to wait a couple of minutes to be connected to an operator.
Live chat is offered in a number of languages, including English, Chinese, Indonesian, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Thai and Vietnamese.
Phone Support: IC Markets offers toll-free numbers for more than 10 countries.
These include Australia, the United Kingdom, Thailand, Indonesia, Germany, Spain, Brazil, Malaysia, South Africa, Poland and Cyprus.
When I spoke to a member of the customer support team via phone, I found them to be incredibly friendly and helpful. They went out of their way to help me, and I didn’t feel rushed at all.
Email Support: If you want, you can also send an email to IC Market’s customer support team.
However, I should warn you that the response times aren’t anywhere near as fast as live chat or phone.
You could be waiting up to 24 hours to receive a response to your query.
I’d only recommend using email if you can’t access the other two customer support methods, or if your problem/question isn’t urgent.
IC Markets are also pretty active on social media and they have profiles on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and even YouTube.
The first two can be used to get in touch with the team, although they won’t be able to offer any advanced help.
They’ll be happy to take basic, general questions though, and can point you in the right direction if they feel as though you need additional help and support.back to menu ↑
IC Markets offer an extensive selection of investment options for you to choose from, and this is one of the biggest highlights of the site.
The fact that they offer some bonds and futures is especially appealing, as this isn’t something I often see at all online trading platforms today.
I also really like the research and education section they’ve put together, and I feel this really helps add to the appeal of the site, especially for newer traders.
The vast range of payment methods on offer makes deposits and withdrawals simple and straightforward.
I also really like the fact they don’t charge banking fees, regardless of how much you’re depositing/withdrawing each time.
I have no issues in recommending IC Markets to traders of all levels, and if you’re looking to start trading for the first time, why not try opening one of their demo accounts to get a feel for how the site works?
- Low spreads
- Diversity of trading tools
- Diversity of forex and CFD instruments
- Reliable forex broker
- Fast account opening
- Good for Pros
- Good for beginners
- Customer Support could be improved
- Slow withdrawals
Details: IC Markets Review
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