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Is CITY INDEX one of the best Australian Forex Brokers? We conducted an in-depth review in September 2020 to find out the answer and bring it to you!



City Index is part of the ‘GAIN Capital’ group, which was founded in 1999 and is one of the largest online trading providers in the world. Operating under GAIN Capital FOREX.com Australia Pty Ltd, their business includes global CFD and the FOREX.com and City Index Forex brands, as well as GTX, a fully independent FX ECN for institutions, and a futures group, which provides access to the world's major commodity and derivatives trading on over 30 global exchanges.

GAIN Capital Holdings is headquartered in Bedminster, New Jersey/USA, and has a global presence with 800+ staff in 12 offices across North America, Europe and Asia Pacific. Their client base exceeds well over 200,000 traders across 180 countries. After acquiring City Index in 2015, GAIN Capital consolidated its retail brand FOREX.com under City Index for the Australian market. The brand City Index had been established in 1983, and their Australian office is currently located in Sydney. City Index describes itself as one of the "world's leading providers of difference contracts, foreign exchange trading and spread betting". The product range is indeed very solid and consists of CFDs and margin trading (e.g. foreign exchange, indices, shares, cryptocurrencies and more).


OUR RATING: 7.7
The overall raiting is based on review by our experts
👌 Reliability: 8 / 10 📈 Spread: 7 / 10
🞧 Offers: 7 / 10🚅 Speed of Execution: 9 / 10
📧 Customer Service: 7 / 10👍 Uptime: 8 / 10
Trading Conditions
Max Leverage:500:1
Platform:
Min Deposit:$100
Spread:From 0.5 Pips
Cuts out Dealing Desk:No
Methods of deposit and offers
Deposit / Withdraw:
Welcome offer:n/a
Rebates Engine Forex:Coming soon!

SECURITY, MARGINS AND TECHNOLOGY

SECURITY AT CITY INDEX

In Summary

  • ASIC regulated
  • Licensed in 7 different jurisdictions
  • High-level web security
  • FCA regulated

As a global market giant, GAIN Capital and its brands take security very seriously. Authorised and regulated in Australia by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC), they ensure that all client money is held safely in a segregated bank account and is never used for hedging or any other operational purposes. GAIN Capital UK Limited is licensed and authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the United Kingdom.

Overall, GAIN Capital and its subsidiaries hold licenses and are regulated in seven different jurisdictions: Australia, the US, Canada, Hong Kong, Singapore and Japan.   

As an international, publicly listed company on the New York Stock Exchange, GAIN Capital ensures the highest levels of corporate governance, financial reporting and transparency.

Trading CFDs with leverage, imposes a higher level of risk. Our City Index review noted that guaranteed stop-loss orders are being offered. While placing such an order has increased costs, it means you can’t lose more than the amount set to trade. This implies a compensation scheme exists that will refund any losses exceeding the amount set. A traditional stop-loss is not a fool-proof risk management strategy as in extreme volatility slippage may occur. This means losses may exceed an amount set as the forex broker couldn’t achieve the price set. Another risk management feature offered by this CFD broker it trailing stop-loss orders.

As a global market giant, GAIN Capital and its brands take security very seriously. Authorised and regulated in Australia by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC), they ensure that all client money is held safely in a segregated bank account and is never used for hedging or any other operational purposes.

Spreads Comparison

CITY INDEX
90
PEPPERSTONE
100
THINK MARKETS
80
IC MARKETS
100
OANDA
60
FXTM
100

CHARGES AND MARGINS AT CITY INDEX

In Summary

  • Spread mark-up or
  • Min. $5 commission (equity CFDs)
  • Market Maker broker model
  • Up to 500:1 leverage

As is the case with most brokers applying a market maker model, clients pay a spread mark-up instead of a fixed commission. CFD trading is available on thousands of markets.

Commissions are only charged for CFD trading in shares. All other asset classes can be traded commission-free. In the euro-zone, the commission on CFD shares is 0.1 per cent, but at least 10 euros. This also applies to Great Britain and the USA. The cost of shares from other countries such as Canada, Japan or Poland can be viewed directly on the City Index website.

Additional fees may apply if trading is not carried out for a more extended time of at least 12 months (inactivity fee). In this case, the Broker's terms and conditions mention a monthly fee of GPB 25 or the equivalent in another currency. However, there is no general account maintenance fee with City Index.

City Index offers low spreads, albeit not the lowest on the market, starting from 0.5 on Forex pairs with a maximum 500:1 leverage.

Thousands of equity CFDs are available for trading at the real market price, and City Index takes a small commission per side starting from 0.08% for ASX-listed shares such as BHP Billiton, Commonwealth Bank of Australia or Woolworths, for example. Minimum charges for both online or phone orders start from $5 in Australia and margin requirements start from 5%.

City Index further offers a range of global stock indices. Spreads on index CFDs start from 1 point (Australia 200 or UK 100, for example) with a margin per contract of 0.5% on Australia 200, Wall Street, UK FTSE 100 or Japan 225, as examples.

On several stock indices, clients can take a position 24 hours on any day, even when the markets are closed. This highlights City Index as one of only a few CFD brokers offering out-of-markets trading. This, of course, doesn't limit the high risks involved in any form of Forex trading, CFD trading or spread betting. These are all complex instruments that need be considered carefully.

Metals, such as gold, silver, copper, platinum and palladium, can be traded in the form of CFD trading from 0.3 points spreads (gold) with a margin requirement of 0.5%.

A wide range of commodities is also available for trading including energies, soft markets or grain. Commodity CFD spreads start from 1 point with a minimum margin requirement per contract of 1% on oil (Brent Crude or US Crude) or 3% on natural gas.

Additional financial instruments in the CFD broker's portfolio include bonds, with spreads starting from 0.02 points and 0.5% margins; interest rates, with spreads from 0.03 points and 0.25% margin requirements; and binary options starting from 4-point spreads and 0.5% margins.

TECHNOLOGY

In Summary

  • Excellent trade execution
  • Own proprietary platform & MT4
  • Highly customisable 
  • Access to Recognia

City Index has invested their 30 years of industry knowledge and know-how to put together a great suit of technology and premium tools that can benefit any type of trader.

Offering a range of platforms that are fully customisable, City Index has built their own platforms from which traders can access all markets (10,000+ CFD markets and range of Forex pairs). The platforms also allow MetaTrader 4 usage, with enhanced features, but with which only Forex can be traded.

Their own Advantage Web platform (Webtrader platform) is a highly customisable online trading platform that allows traders to access all City Index’s financial tools. It is highly intuitive and further allows for advanced technical analysis and charting; for example, offering traders instant access to multiple interactive technical indicators on which they can undertake research on price trends. Custom indicators can also be set. Standard order types as well as all common stop-loss functions are available.

AT Pro is City Index’s latest downloadable desktop platform in their award-winning suit of platforms/tools. Similar to the Advantage Web platform, it is highly customisable and offers improved speed, reliability and charting functionalities. Experienced traders can benefit from the range of tools available, which include advanced charting options, the ability to choose from hundreds of built-in algorithms and trading strategies, and the option to create/code their own trading system (including back testing)!

Clients who wish to use MetaTrader 4 (MT4) as their standard trading platform can do so with a City Index account; however, this can only be used to trade Forex pairs AND if you hold a Professional Trader account (read more about this in the City Index clients section). City Index offers advanced MT4 platform features such as EAs (Expert Advisors), one-click dealing and customisable leverage of up to 200:1.

The customisable leverage feature is missing from both their Advantage Web and AT Pro platforms but is available on all mobile trading apps. Mobile apps are available for all common Android and iOS devices. The niche offers Windows Phone and Blackberry are also served by City Index.

In addition to their range of available platforms, City Index offers account holders access to another powerful tool: Recognia. Recognia is a leader in providing premium analysis and trade recommendations. Its research helps traders validate investment decisions, manage risk and identify trade ideas. It provides coverage on tens of thousands of instruments on 85 exchanges worldwide, including shares, Forex, indices and commodities.

AT Pro is City Index’s latest downloadable platform in their award-winning suit of platforms/tools. Similar to the Advantage Web platform, it is highly customisable and offers improved speed, reliability and charting functionalities. Advanced traders can benefit from the range of tools available, which include advanced charting options, the ability to choose from hundreds of built-in algorithms and trading strategies, and the option to create/code their own trading system!

Execution of Speed Comparison

CITY INDEX
90
PEPPERSTONE
100
THINK MARKETS
90
OANDA
80
IC MARKETS
100
FXTM
90

CUSTOMER SERVICE, TRADING OPTIONS AND SPECIAL FEATURES

CUSTOMER SERVICE AND CLIENTS SUPPORT

In Summary

  • 24/5 customer support
  • Global presence with large client base
  • 1 account type to access all platforms

With more than 200,000 clients worldwide, GAIN Capital has one of the largest client bases in the world of online trading. Over 800 highly trained staff across the globe ensure a high level of customer satisfaction.

City Index alone has more than 400 staff and offices in Australia, the UK, Singapore, China, Malaysia and Dubai.

They offer a friendly 24/5 support helpdesk that is available via live chat, phone and email, as well as dedicated account managers. An online FAQ and help section is also available.

Retail investor accounts: City Index clients can only select one type of real live account with which any of their suit of platforms can be accessed. The only other option is to be "upgraded" to a Premium or Professional Trader status, which gives further benefits.

Here is a quick overview of all three City Index account options:

City Index Review 2019

Key features of these account types include:

Key Features of City Index

Premium and Professional trader account holders receive the most benefits, but most traders will be ok with a classic Trader account.

No matter the trading account, every trader has access to 12,000+ markets including Forex, indices, cryptos, commodities, shares, bonds, options and even interest rates.

Looking at available tools and trading platforms, it is interesting to see that MetaTrader 4 (MT4) and AT Pro are only available with a Professional Trader account. This means, that you cannot connect your City Index account with MT4 unless you are a client at Professional Trader level.

However, most charts, indicators, market analysis and trading tools, such as Trading Central, Reuters and an Economic Calendar, are accessible with any City Index trading account. Only the advanced Dataminr is specially reserved for professional clients.

Platforms and Tools City Index

When it comes to deposit methods and payment options, City Index doesn't offer the widest range. Available options include:

  • Debit cards: Visa, MasterCard, Maestro and Electron
  • Credit cards: Visa, MasterCard,
  • Bank transfer

Please note that Citibank cards cannot be used for funding accounts held with any spread betting provider. If you wish to fund from a Citibank account you will need to do this via bank transfer.

The minimum deposit requirement is set to $100 initially. All subsequent deposits can be as low as $25.

Clients can open a demo account to test City Index' product portfolio with real-time pricing for the first 12 weeks upon sign-up.

Knowledge transfer & webinars:

- free trading webinars, but no seminars
- Glossary and FAQs are a reasonable basis, though you won't find any real depth.
- a good accompaniment for new customers through free e-book and 4-week program

On their websites, cityindex.co.uk and cityindex.com.au and its sub-pages is a lot of information to find. However, real in-depth knowledge is missing. There are free trading webinars for everyone but no seminars on offer. Further, e-books (new customers get them for free) are available for a fee. Through the "Learn to Trade" program, new customers receive four weeks of account management support. FAQs and a glossary can also be found on Cityindex.co.uk, and these offers are then free of charge again. Their knowledge transfer primarily addresses new customers.

FOREX AND OTHER TRADING OPTIONS AT CITY INDEX

In Summary

  • 84 currency pairs & 5 cryptocurrencies
  • More than 12,000 markets
  • 30 commodities & metals
  • 21 indices CFDs

City Index offers access to thousands of financial instruments, many of which are available to trade 24 hours a day. 

In Forex trading, spread sizes start from 0.5 pips (for example on the popular EUR/USD currency pair) and traders can choose from 37 major and minor currency pairs. Indices start from 1 points.

City Index offers a very competitive maximum leverage of up to 500:1 and their clients can start trading with deposits as low as $100 (initial) and $25 (subsequent deposits). 

As one of the world’s and Australia’s top CFD trading providers, City Index offers clients the option to choose from a huge variety including more than 12,000 markets, Forex, global indices, shares, commodities, bonds, binaries and more.

Trading options on indices include Australia 200, Wall Street, FTSE 100, Germany 30, etc.

City Index offers tight spreads on thousands of shares worldwide including those listed in Australia, the UK, US, Europe, New Zealand and Asia.

Clients can, for example, trade Australian shares with commissions from just AU$5.

Accessible cryptocurrencies for trading include Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple (or rather XRP), Litecoin and BitcoinCash.

SPECIAL FEATURES

In Summary

  • Proprietary trading platforms
  • Tight spreads & leverage up to 500:1
  • Advanced trading tools
  • Wide selection of markets

In addition to a long-standing presence of more than 30 years, the back-up of their mother company and trading giant GAIN Capital and the large selection of trading opportunities, City Index provides an interesting and unique range of trading platforms that incorporate numerous smart features.

City Index and it's multiple subsidiaries is licensed and regulated in multiple jurisdictions. Regulators include the FCA in the United Kingdom, ASIC in Australia and MAS in Singapore.

City Index offers a large choice of unique charting options, analysis tools and customisable platform features, including the option for traders to code their own trading strategies. A range of 12,000+ financial instruments is on offer.

Traders also benefit from access to Recognia, which offers in-depth research that can help them to validate investment decisions, manage risk and identify trade ideas. It also provides coverage on tens of thousands of instruments on 85 exchanges worldwide, including shares, Forex, indices and commodities.

In addition to a long-standing presence of more than 30 years, the back-up of their mother company and trading giant GAIN Capital and the large selection of trading opportunities, City Index provides an interesting and unique range of trading platforms that incorporate numerous smart features.

Max Leverage Comparison

CITY INDEX
500:1
PEPPERSTONE
500:1
THINK MARKETS
400:1
OANDA
100:1
IC Markets
500:1
FXTM
1000:1

IN CONCLUSION

City Index is one of the oldest and long-standing brokers on the market and one of Australia's top Forex addresses. The overall trading environment and conditions are more than decent and at a competitive level. Clients have access to thousands of markets, including Forex, commodities, shares, indices and cryptocurrencies. 

CITY INDEX F.A.Q.


where is City Index located?

City Index is a trading name of GAIN Capital and has 30+ years’ experience in global markets.

The parent company GAIN Capital is headquartered in Bedminster, New Jersey/USA, and has a global presence with 800+ staff in 12 offices across North America, Europe and Asia Pacific. Their client base exceeds well over 200,000 traders across 180 countries.

who owns City Index?

City Index is a trading name of GAIN Capital.

how to fund a trading account?

City Index clients have the following funding options available:

  • Debit cards: Visa, MasterCard, Maestro and Electron
  • Credit cards: Visa, MasterCard,
  • Bank transfer

Please note that Citibank cards cannot be used to fund accounts held with any spread betting provider. If you wish to fund from a Citibank account you will need to do this by bank transfer.

is City Index regulated?

Yes, the company is regulated by various regulators. For example, GAIN Capital UK Limited is licensed by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), GAIN Capital Australia Pty Ltd is regulated by the Australian Investments and Securities Commission (ASIC) and GAIN Capital Singapore Pte is authorized by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).

what timezone do they operate in?

Offices around the globe guarantee 24/5 support.

City Index withdrawal methods?

Withdrawal options include:

  • Debit cards: Visa, MasterCard, Maestro and Electron
  • Credit cards: Visa, MasterCard,
  • Bank transfer

is there a withdrawal limit?

There are no minimum or maximum withdrawal limits.

does City Index accept clients from Canada?

No, they don't accept applications from residents of Canada.

do they offer a Forex VPS service?

Currently, there’s no VPS service available.

is City Index a True ECN broker?

No, City Index acts uses a market maker broker model instead.

is City Index FCA regulated?

Yes, they are licensed by the FCA.

is City Index affected by ESMA regulation?

Depending on your location, ESMA regulation may be applicable.

brokers like City Index?

IC Markets is a regulated ECN Forex broker with high maximum leverage, a large product portfolio and excellent trading conditions. Read our review here.