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Which are the most popular Forex trading platforms on the market?


Leading international Forex brokers typically offer their clients a range of platforms to trade currency pairs on the foreign exchange market (FX), CFDs, commodities, digital currencies, stocks and other complex instruments. The Interface/terminal platforms used by all Forex brokers to execute trades differ from each other. Some online brokers offer their own proprietary trading platforms or allow for access to leading third-party platforms such as MetaTrader 4 (MT4), MetaTrader 5 (MT5) or the cTrader platform. The best Forex brokers offer trading platforms that are available as a desktop and web-based version and further allow mobile trading.

Both MT4 and MT5 trading platforms have been created by the trading software development company Metaquotes. The MetaTrader 4 trading platform, the most commonly used to trade on the Forex market, is designed for Forex and futures trading. With MetaTrader 4, traders can analyze financial markets, perform advanced trading operations, run trading robots also known as Expert Advisors (EAs) and copy trades of other traders.

Successful traders from around the world have chosen the MetaTrader 5 multi-asset platform for trading Forex, exchange instruments and futures by logging in via their retail investor accounts. The platform offers advanced financial online trading functions, as well as superior tools for technical and fundamental technical analysis. MT5 can also trade automatically by using trading robots (EAs) and trading signals. In addition to the desktop and mobile apps (Android and iOS) versions, the platform is available on the web and can be accessed from any device.

cTrader is also one of the most commonly used online Forex platforms on the market. It’s a true ECN (electronic communications network) trading platform designed by the software company Spotware Systems. It guarantees STP (straight-through-processing) for orders placed by Forex traders, allowing them to deal directly with banks and liquidity providers without the intervention of a dealing desk (NDD).

The cTrader platform is not as widely used as the two MetaTrader (MT4 & MT5) trading platforms and Forex traders have a much smaller selection of Forex brokers available that provide this platform to their clients. Nonetheless, especially professional traders enjoy cTrader’s exclusive features such as the advanced trading capabilities with fast entry and execution, asynchronous order processing, level two pricing, a full range of advanced order types, an abundance of information to support risk management and help investors to make smarter trading choices. Overall, cTrader boasts many excellent trading tools and unlike other platforms, cTrader can display DOM (Depth of Market) with the full range of executable prices coming directly from liquidity providers. Professional Forex traders also enjoy the cAlgo integration, which allows for the creation of custom indicators and robots, as well automated trading. Another convenient feature is cTrader’s chart trading which enables the sophisticated trader to click & drag & place orders directly from charts.


Which Forex Brokers offer the best Forex trading platforms?


There is only a limited amount of cTrader brokers offering the advanced cTrader trading platform and ECN or STP trading models in general. All trading strategies are accepted on ECN brokers trading platforms which makes it ideal for day traders, scalpers and EAs alike.

ECN (Electronic Communications Network) and STP (straight-through-processing) brokers are the opposite of so-called “market makers” as they do not operate a dealing desk (NDD). Instead, they fill clients’ orders without intervention and allow for direct access to the markets. This means that it is not the broker who sets the price but the market itself. ECN brokers provide traders with direct market access (DMA).

As always, we recommend that you choose a Forex broker that is licensed and regulated. ASIC- (Australia), FCA- (UK) and CySEC- (Cyprus) regulated brokers are usually a good choice as they commonly guarantee the safety of deposits and put client funds in segregated trust accounts with top tier banks. Of course, investors should always be aware of the high risk that is involved in margin and currency trading.

Pepperstone, a Melbourne, Australia and London, UK based Forex broker focuses on providing traders with low-cost pricing across Forex, CFDs and commodities and is one of the top cTrader brokers on the market. Licensed and regulated by ASIC (Australian Securities and Investments Commission) and the FCA (Financial Conduct Authority), Pepperstone takes pride in offering a culture of strong compliance and full adherence to all applicable regulatory frameworks, further incorporating trade execution with pricing from 22 banks and liquidity providers and a 100% automated execution. They also won numerous industry awards for their excellent customer support.

Pepperstone clients can choose from leading online Forex trading platforms, including MetaTrader (MT4 and MT5) as well as cTrader, and have access to 80+ trading instruments such as FX (currency pairs), cryptocurrencies (such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash and Dash), metals, oil and indices with institutional grade prices. Further offering up to 500:1 leverage and the ability to trade micro lots on currencies, metals and oil, Pepperstone clients can benefit from offers as low as 0.0 pip spreads and $1 per point on 11 Major Index CFDs. Pepperstone doesn’t cover the widest range of markets; however, it does offer excellent trading conditions. For example, Pepperstone offers ultra-low spreads, starting from 0.0 on Forex pairs with commission charges as low as AUD 3,50 per 1 lot on AUD. Clients can start FX trading with a minimum deposit of $200.

Another outstanding ECN Forex broker is IC Markets. They are also an Australia based Forex broker with an excellent reputation, very decent customer service presence and product portfolio. Giving their clients the option to either use MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader 5 or cTrader platform as their trading platforms of choice, IC Markets designed one of the first True ECN trading environments. This offering has no restriction on trading including no minimum order distance (trades can even be placed within the spread), and scalping, hedging and automated trading all permitted. Tight spreads start with their True ECN account at 0.0 pips with flexible leverage options offering up to 500:1. IC Markets’ MT4, MT5 and cTrader trade servers are located in the NY4 & LD5 IBX Equinix Data Centres in New York and London respectively, providing clients with the fastest possible execution speeds. Equinix data centres are known globally for their secure and reliable low latency infrastructure. Clients can start trading CFDs or trade Forex after creating a demo or live trading account.

Clients can test their exclusive trading environment with a demo account before applying their trading strategies on a live account.

    Find the best trading platform brokers for your needs


    To help you find the Forex and broker that is best suited to your needs, take a look at our comparison table and ranking of top Forex and trading platform brokers above. If you require more in-depth information or are looking for more brokers to choose from, check out our detailed individual broker reviews and additional comparison tables.