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Best Forex Brokers UK

If you are looking to trade forex, you may be wondering which are the best forex brokers in the UK. Within this article, I have managed to take out the guesswork by performing hours of meticulous research into the best UK forex brokers, with the highest safety regulations for every level of trader from complete beginners to skilled traders and institutions.

Trading forex is tightly regulated within the UK by the Financial Conduct Authority, and therefore you can rest assured that all the UK forex brokers I have listed here fall under that regulation.

List of the best forex brokers at a glance

See my list of forex brokers available to UK traders and investors.

Plus500

Plus500

  • Trade on +60 Forex pairs with attractive spreads
  • Start a free unlimited demo account with real-time quotes

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 72% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

eToro

eToro

  • Copy-trading with more than 3 million active traders
  • Low trading costs

67% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. Your capital is at risk. Other fees apply. For more information, visit etoro.com/trading/fees

Admiral Markets

Admiral Markets: Admirals

  • Get up to 50% cash back on your spreads
  • Hundreds of stocks & stock CFDs
  • Trade and invest in 8,000+ markets

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 76% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

AvaTrade

AvaTrade

  • 0% commission fees
  • Minimum deposit £100
  • Zero deposit fees

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 71% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

IG Investments

IG Investments

  • One of the best forex brokers in the UK
  • Excellent web platform for trading
  • Low trading fees

Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 68% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading spread bets and CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how spread bets and CFDs work, and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Interactive Brokers

Interactive Brokers

  • Huge range of tradable assets
  • Very low cost for high volume traders

Investing in financial products involves taking risk.Your investments may increase or decrease in value, and losses my exceed the value of your original investment.

HYCM Henyep Markets

HYCM – Henyep Markets

  • Multi-regulated broker – FCA, CySEC, DFSA, CIMA
  • Minimum deposit £100
  • Free Demo Account – MT4 and MT5 platforms

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 73% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

City Index

City Index

  • Take a position on 84 global currency pairs
  • Tight spreads and a multiple-award-winning broker

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 67% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

IronFX

IronFX

  • MT4 and Webtrader 4 platforms available
  • Over 200 tradable instruments available including forex CFDs
  • Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority – FCA No. 585561

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 70.51% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Best overall forex broker

IG Investments

IG Investments

IG has managed to retain it’s spot as the most popular forex broker in the UK with an excellent range of CFD accounts from which retail investors can trade forex as well as a comprehensive suite of tradable assets, research tools, and educational material.

In addition to this, IG are also competitive with their fees whilst retaining excellent levels of quality with a highly advanced and intuitive trading platform. Users can also rely on excellent levels of 24/7 customer service on chat, phone, email and social media.

For forex traders looking to expand their knowledge, the trading account at IG also provides access to IG’s guide for forex traders. This includes details on forex and what it entails, how to trade currencies and the benefits of trading forex.

IG are an FCA regulated broker. Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage.

Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 68% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading spread bets and CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how spread bets and CFDs work, and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Best forex broker for copy trading

eToro

eToro

The thriving community of traders utilising the eToro platform makes it the perfect forex trading account for copy trading, providing scope to mirror the trading activities of experienced traders with proven track records. Copied traders are offered an incentive to continue making successful trades, turning a profit for themselves, and in turn, anyone copying their trades.

This is a great option for people just venturing into the forex space with more than 3 million traders available to copy and options to filter by returns, popularity among copiers, and the number of markets they are active in. Copy Trading can help increase profitable trades by relying on the experience and knowledge of other traders.

In addition to this eToro is highly competitive when it comes to fees and range of currency pairs with over 45 pairs available to choose from all available from both the web and your mobile device.

67% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. Your capital is at risk. Other fees apply. For more information, visit etoro.com/trading/fees

Best UK forex broker for institutions and professional traders

Interactive Brokers

Interactive Brokers

With its advanced research platform and risk analysis tools as well as technical research news, advanced charting and 20 order types, Interactive Brokers (IBKR) offers everything the professional trader has come to rely on.

Whilst the platform and its vast array of customisable tools may be too daunting for the novice trader, there is a wealth of educational material to support trading development including video courses, webinars and articles.

In addition to this, traders have the option to test out the platform without risking any of their own funds with Interactive Investors demo trading account.

Trading forex at Interactive Brokers can be conducted from two main platforms, the Trader Workstation (TWS) and the Client Portal platform. The Trader Workstation is an ideal platform from where professional investors can access the impressive array of features. This can all be accessed on both the web platform and the IBKR mobile app.

Investing in financial products involves taking risk.Your investments may increase or decrease in value, and losses my exceed the value of your original investment.

Best UK forex broker for beginners

City Index

City Index

City Index has one of the lowest spreads available from UK forex brokers, making them an excellent choice for beginners. They also have a low initial deposit of only £100 as well as a comprehensive suite of training resources to help beginners all the way through to advanced forex traders. This includes webinars and videos, articles, platform tutorials, risk management tools, daily market analysis, and training.

There are three main account types on offer including Trader, Premium Trader, and Professional. This illustrates City Index’s commitment to catering to all levels of traders and their free demo account offers scope to try the service without any risk to your personal funds.

When traders open an account at City Index, they can access a range of support features including a welcome pack and a call to walk you through the platform. In addition to this, regular market intelligence emails and trading ideas can help develop skills for trading forex.

Forex traders at City Index can access 84 global FX pairs, with tight spreads of 0.5 points.

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 67% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Best forex broker for number of assets available

Capital.com

Capital.com

Traders at Capital.com have access to an outstanding number of assets including 138 currency pairs, making this one of the most comprehensive selections available. In addition to this, the emerging sector comes with 238 cryptocurrency pairs, as well as exotic pricing in the Mexican Peso, Belarusian Ruble, Hungarian Forint, or Thai Bhat.

The platform at Capital.com is very user friendly with extensive charting, fundamental reports, and over 70 technical indicators. There are also personalised watchlists and hedging and risk management tools to assist traders with their strategies.

For forex traders looking to expand their knowledge, Capital.com offer The Financial News and Features section which is packed with written analytics and fundamental news. In addition, the ‘Features’ provides traders with extensive ideas and educational content.

Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 75.26% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading spread bets and/or CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. Professional clients can lose more than they deposit. All trading involves risk.

Best forex broker for spread betting platform

CMC Markets

CMC Markets

As profits made from spread betting are not subject to capital gains tax (CGT) or stamp duty in the UK, they are a popular choice among traders. CMC Markets offer a wide product range, with tight spreads and automated execution.

CMC Markets also offer traders a comprehensive range of risk management tools and training guides as well as a highly competitive pricing structure with typical spreads of 0.74 pips on the EUR/USD.

For traders who surpass at least $25 million in notional trading volumes per month, CMC Markets offers liquidity rebates starting at $5 per million and increasing to as much as $10 million for those that trade over $300 million monthly although this is only available to professional traders.

Whilst CMC caters well to advanced traders, they are also an excellent option for beginners with their world-class selection of educational materials.

Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 66% of retail investor accounts lose money when spread betting and/or trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how spread bets and CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Best FX broker for free demo account

XTB Trading

XTB

XTB is the perfect platform for new traders to practice their skills and strategies without risking any of their personal funds. The demo account is completely free for up to 4 weeks and traders get £100k of virtual funds with which to start trading on 1500+ CFD markets, forex, indices, commodities and shares.

To support the development of new traders, XTB also offer a comprehensive range of educational resources including videos explaining trading strategies, trading instruments and forex platforms and live webinars. This is all helpfully categorised by experience level including basic, intermediate, expert and premium.

Traders who are then confident enough to try their hand at trading with real funds can choose between three account types; Standard, Pro, and Islamic. Each of these accounts has a unique take on commission fees, minimum deposits, leverage and swap fees.

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 73% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Best FX and CFD broker for education

AvaTrade

AvaTrade

New traders looking to expand their knowledge and education need look no further than AvaTrade. AvaTrade is one of the oldest online UK forex brokers and is heavily regulated on several continents.

Whilst AvaTrade are an excellent choice for copy trading, trading on mobile and low-cost trading, where they really stand out is with their investor education with their extensive content from both in-house staff and third-party providers including SharpTrader. There are almost 60 articles for beginners and 29 for skilled traders which can help provide insights into the kind of activities that could influence market movement.

In addition, AvaTrade offer traders video content including platform tutorials and webinars explaining the more complex aspects to forex trading.

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 71% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Best FX broker for lowest spreads and commissions/scalping

Pepperstone

Pepperstone

Pepperstone is ideal for scalpers as most trades have execution in less than 30ms as well as some of the tightest spreads among forex brokers in the UK.

Pepperstone offer two main accounts, catering to different levels of traders, the standard account for beginner forex traders and a razor account for advanced traders. The forex spreads in the standard account start at just 0.6 pips and alongside the commission-free pricing structure, this makes for a very cost effective solution.

For veteran traders, the Razor account is highly competitive with super tight commission spreads for each major forex pair.

In addition to this Pepperstone have award-winning customer support which includes phone support, live chat and email. For traders who like to conduct trades on the go, the Pepperstone mobile platform offers a seamless experience with optimum functionality.

Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 76.6% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading spread bets and CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how spread bets and CFDs work, and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Also consider trading forex via CFDs

Plus500

Plus500

Plus500 have a slick, intuitive web and mobile platform with an excellent range of tools to trade in various asset classes via CFDs, including fixed spread forex. In terms of fees, the commission-free trading and low non-trading fees make this forex broker highly competitive.

For forex traders who conduct their trades on the move, the Plus 500 mobile app is compatible with most android devices and smartwatches. From here traders can access all the great functionality and in-depth analysis as well as execute trades and manage their accounts. There are also several risk management tools to help minimise losses.

Plus500 also offer a free demo account so traders can test the platform completely risk-free. There are over 60 forex pairs which can be traded as CFDs, with leverage for trading and 24/7 support.

Plus500 is a publicly-traded company that is listed on the London Stock Exchange (LON: PLUS) as well as being regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority to offer forex trading to UK traders.

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 72% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

What is forex trading?

Forex trading is the largest and most liquid financial market in the world involving the changing of one currency into another, often with the anticipation of making a profit in doing so.

The foreign exchange market, also known as the FX market or forex market, is the global market for the exchange of one currency to another. This can be conducted for commerce, trading, or tourism reasons and forex is usually traded as exchange rate pairs. An example of an exchange rate pair or currency pair would be GBP/USD which is the pair for trading the Great British Pound against the U.S dollar.

In contrast to a stock market, with forex trading, there is no central marketplace. Currency trading is conducted electronically over the counter (OTC) via computer networks among traders from across the globe. This means the market is open 24 hours a day for five and a half days a week with price changes constantly moving. This allows for speculative opportunities for trading one currency against another for professional traders and retail investors.

How to trade forex

There are two ways to trade currencies. The first is to earn the interest rate differential between two currencies. This works by buying the currency with the higher interest rate, and shorting the currency with the lower interest rate.

The other way to trade currencies is to profit from changes in the exchange rate.

These fluctuations in the price of a currency will depend on the supply and demand from banks participating in the spot market. These large trade flows prevent rogue traders from having any influence on the price of any given currency, which in turn helps to provide some transparency for investors.

What influences price changes in the FX market?

The value of any particular currency is based on supply and demand, however, there are some currencies such as the Chinese renminbi which have a fixed exchange rate. Currencies without a fixed exchange rate are known as floating currencies, and this is the case for most advanced economies, including the UK pound.

Floating currencies are constantly moving up and down in value against other currencies. These are usually small changes in movement, as small as a fraction of a cent higher or lower at the end of a trading day. However, this can change dramatically at the hands of extreme economic or political news. In this instance, there can ensue wild swings in price, such as a fall in value of 10% the day after the UK voted to leave the European Union. This encouraged traders to sell the pound quickly, decreasing its demand, and thus its value.

Another example of a market influencer are economic developments such as data that reveals the economy is growing faster than predicted, which in turn could lead to the Bank of England increasing interest rates. Higher interest rates lead to a greater return on your money and therefore increases demand, boosting its value. This is how financial markets ebb and flow in line with economic, financial and political news.

The best forex trading platforms will often include live news feeds in their suite of tools to enhance retail traders capacity for profit. This is also the reason why mobile trading is so important, so traders can react instantly to changes that may affect the price of currencies.

Why is FX trading so popular?

Forex trading is arguably one of the most popular forms of investment with a daily average trading volume of about $5 trillion.

The main reason for this demand among investors is that forex is one of the largest financial markets in the world with the potential for quick, large returns on your investment. This is largely due to the high volume of currencies being traded which in turn creates liquidity. However, there is a downside to this amount of liquidity, and potential investors should always be aware that with the potential for high gains, comes the potential for high losses and most platforms will report that more retail investment accounts lose money when trading CFDs and forex than gain money.

However, this all comes down to strategy, and the right amount of knowledge can result in significant profit. This alongside the fact that the forex market is available for trading 24 hours a day for five and a half days of the week means individual investors can react quickly to market influencers such as political and economic factors.

These rapid movements set the bar for potential immediate gains, unlike the stocks and shares market whereby time in the market is more of an influence to your success than timing the market.

In addition to this, the forex market benefits from leveraged trading, whereby investors can open a position on a larger portion of the forex market, without risking the full investment amount usually required.

This increased exposure can lead to increased gains, without having to risk the same amount of money that would usually be needed for such a trade. However, it is important to fully understand how leverage trading works and how you can benefit from it, as this increase in profits can just as easily lead to an increase in losses.

Is FX trading legal in the UK?

Yes, FX trading is legal in the UK, although each platform will have its own level of regulation and this is always worth checking. On the whole, forex brokers in the UK are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) who are responsible for ensuring that all UK forex brokers are licenced and are providing a trading environment that is in the best interests of the traders that use it. Regulation by the Financial Conduct Authority also provides protection of your funds under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) which aims to compensate traders for the loss of their trading funds in the event the broker runs into insolvency issues.

In addition to this, the FCA requires that a multi-asset trading platform keep its operating capital separate to that of its traders to ensure this is protected should the platform experience financial difficulty.

However, it may be the case that some forex brokers are regulated by a similar body outside of the UK. These regulators will be responsible for the same level of regulation as the FCA and can include:

  • Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the National Futures Association (NFA) in the USA
  • Australian Securities and Markets Authority (ASIC) in Australia
  • European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) in the European Union
  • Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF) in France
  • Comisión Nacional de Mercado de Valores (CNMV) in Spain
  • The Financial Services Agency (FSA) in Japan
  • The Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) in Hong Kong

This level of regulation should be considered a minimum when selecting a forex trading platform in order to ensure correct levels of protection for you and your funds. This can be confirmed on the FCA’s own website where they supply a register of all forex brokers in the UK who adhere to these standards.

Despite these regulations, it is crucial to understand that trading CFDs, FX and cryptocurrencies comes with a high degree of risk, and providers are required to publish the percentage of retail investor accounts that lose money when trading CFDs on their platform.

How to choose the best trading platforms for forex

Trading forex has become accessible for all levels of experience, due in large to the plethora of forex brokers and mobile apps available. This is good news for retail investors who can take advantage of platforms in an increasingly competitive forex trading industry.

However, when considering any platform for forex and CFD trading, there are some key elements that you should take into consideration.

Regulation

As mentioned previously, the gold standard for regulation within the United Kingdom is the Financial Conduct Authority. It is always advisable to check that any of the forex trading platforms you are considering have this level of regulation. The best way to check this is via the FCA website where there is a published list of FCA regulated brokers.

Trading Costs

Platform costs and trading costs can start to erode away at your gains and it is therefore important that the UK forex broker you are considering is competitive in this respect. You will need to be aware of commissions and spreads.

Commissions are usually calculated as a percentage of the spread. The spread is the difference between the bid and ask price of a forex pair. If the broker does not charge a commission then it is worth checking the spread as this is often where they will make their money.

Spreads are often depicted as a pip. A pip is the minimum unit of price change in forex. Look for a forex broker that has tight spreads.

Currency pairs offered

There are a vast number of currency pairs available, but not all UK forex brokers will offer all the pairs. The most common pairs trade with the greatest liquidity and include EUR/USD, GBP/USD, USD/JPY and USD/CHF.

Trading platform

Check the reviews on platforms such as Trustpilot to ensure the FX broker you are considering is reliable and trades can be executed with ease. Usability and layout are all important elements, as are the tools such as automated trading options, strategy builders, and alerts.

A demo account offers an opportunity to get to the grips with the platform before risking any of your own funds. Demo trading accounts will usually offer a sum of virtual money with which to trade.

Minimum deposit

Some forex accounts will support a low minimum deposit, however other platforms will require a large minimum deposit. Due to leverage, the buying power is far greater than the minimum deposit, and therefore you should ensure you are aware of the minimum deposit and whether that is suitable for your trading requirements. This is especially true for beginner traders who may not wish to commit to a large investment amount.

Deposit and withdrawal times

It is wise to check the deposit and withdrawal policy on any given platform as times and costs can vary significantly. Funding can often be done online using a credit card, ACH payment, PayPal, wire transfer, or bank cheque. Withdrawals are often done using cheque or bank transfer. Check the average withdrawal times as well as customer reviews to ensure the platform is operating within their published times.

Customer service

FX trading takes place 24 hours a day for five and a half days a week. Therefore, many brokers will offer 24 hour customer service so you can access help when you need it. However, this is not always the case and is therefore worth checking. Also check the method of contact the forex brokers are offering. These should include phone, email, and live chat.

Forex broker FAQs

Will I be taxed on my forex trading profits?

If you are an amateur trader who is trading as a side gig, then you are only liable for tax on profits over and above the trading allowance. The trading allowance allows you to earn up to £1000 of income tax-free, anything over and above this amount will be taxed at the standard rate for capital gains tax.

What is the difference between CFDs and forex?

The main difference between CFDs and forex is that CFD contracts cover a wide range of assets whereas forex is limited to just currencies.

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