Brokers With Negative Balance Protection

In the hands of a skilled trader, leverage can reap large profits from modest price movements by increasing the size of their position. The reverse is also true, as losses from a single careless or unlucky leveraged trade can grow to substantial proportions, and without the presence of a safety net can completely wipe a trader out and put them in debt.

Luckily, such a safety net exists for retail traders in the United Kingdom, where the country’s regulatory body, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), requires trading brokers and platforms to offer negative balance protection on certain trades. Ensuring you are covered by this protection, and understanding how it works, are two important concepts for traders to get to grips with when they start trading with leverage.

This guide breaks down the pros and cons of the safety net, alongside a list of the top trading brokers with negative balance protection in 2024.

  • Negative balance protection ensures a trader’s losses do not exceed their account balance
  • Traders who use brokers with negative balance protection are prevented from becoming indebted to their platform
  • FCA-regulated trading brokers are required to offer negative balance protection
  • Negative balance protection generally covers retail but not professional traders

Top Brokers With Negative Balance Protection

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    AvaTrade is a leading forex and CFD broker, established in 2006 and regulated across 9 jurisdictions. Over 400,000 users have signed up with the broker which processes over 2 million trades each month. The firm offers multiple trading platforms, including MT4, MT5, and a proprietary WebTrader. 1250+ financial instruments are available for trading, alongside a comprehensive education center and multilingual customer support.

  2. XTB

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    Founded in 2002 in Poland, XTB now serves more than 935,000 clients. The forex and CFD broker combines a heavily regulated trading environment with an extensive selection of 5,600+ assets and a commitment to trader satisfaction, featuring an intuitive in-house platform with superb tools to support aspiring traders.

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    Established in 1989, CMC Markets is a respected broker listed on the London Stock Exchange and authorized by several tier-one regulators, including the FCA, ASIC and CIRO. More than 1 million traders from around the world have signed up with the multi-award winning brokerage.

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    Eightcap is an award-winning, FCA-regulated broker offering industry-low trading fees. They are also the highest-rated brand by TradingView’s 50 million-strong users, who can trade directly on the platform. UK traders can sign up for a live account with an accessible £100 minimum deposit.

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    FXCC is an established broker that’s been offering low-cost online trading since 2010. Registered in Nevis and regulated by the CySEC, it stands out for its ECN trading conditions, no minimum deposit and smooth account opening that takes less than 5 minutes.

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    Spreadex is an FCA-regulated broker that offers spread betting opportunities on an impressive 10,000+ CFD instruments including 60 forex pairs. Traders can also take short-term positions on sporting events. The brand has been around for over 20 years and has won multiple awards.

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    Established in Australia in 2010, Pepperstone is a top-rated forex and CFD broker with over 400,000 clients worldwide. It offers access to 1,300+ instruments on leading platforms MT4, MT5, cTrader and TradingView, maintaining low, transparent fees. Pepperstone is also regulated by trusted authorities like the FCA, ASIC, and CySEC, ensuring a secure environment for traders at all levels.

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    Interactive Brokers (IBKR) is a premier brokerage for experienced traders, providing access to 150 markets in 33 countries, along with a suite of comprehensive investment services. With over 40 years of experience, this Nasdaq-listed firm adheres to stringent regulations by the SEC, FCA, CIRO, and SFC, amongst others, and is one of the most trusted brokers for trading around the globe.

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    IC Markets is a globally recognized forex and CFD broker known for its excellent pricing, comprehensive range of trading instruments, and premium trading technology. Founded in 2007 and headquartered in Australia, the brokerage is regulated by the ASIC, CySEC and FSA, and has attracted more than 180,000 clients from over 200 countries.

  10. XM

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    XM is a globally recognized forex and CFD broker with 10+ million clients in 190+ countries. Since 2009, this trusted broker has been known for its low fees on 1000+ instruments. XM is regulated by multiple financial bodies, including the ASIC and CySEC.

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    City Index is an established and award-winning forex, CFD and spread betting broker with top-tier global regulation, including in the UK (FCA) and Australia (ASIC). With 30+ years in the industry, 13,500+ instruments and 24/5 customer support, City Index is a solid pick for aspiring traders.

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    DNA Markets is a forex and CFD broker established in 2020. The broker operates two entities in Australia and the offshore jurisdiction, St Vincent and the Grenadines. Traders can access 250+ markets, with a Standard account for beginners and a Raw account for experienced traders. The reliable MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 platforms are available, alongside Signal Start.

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    Founded in 1999, FOREX.com is now part of StoneX, a financial services organization serving over one million customers worldwide. Regulated in the US, UK, EU, Australia and beyond, the broker offers thousands of markets, not just forex, and provides excellent pricing on cutting-edge platforms.

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    eToro is a top-rated multi-asset platform which offers trading services in thousands of CFDs, stocks and cryptoassets. Launched in 2007, the brand has millions of active traders globally and is authorized by tier one regulators, including the FCA and CySEC. The brand is particularly popular for its comprehensive social trading platform. Cryptoasset investing is highly volatile and unregulated in the UK and some EU countries. No consumer protection. Tax on profits may apply. 76% of retail CFD accounts lose money.

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    RoboForex is an online broker, established in 2009 and registered with the IFSC in Belize. Traders can choose from five accounts (Prime, ECN, R StocksTrader, ProCent, Pro) catering to different needs with trades from 0.01 lots and spreads from 0 pips. RoboForex has also enhanced its offering over the years, adding CFD instruments and launching its stock trading platform, plus the CopyFX system.

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    InstaForex is a forex and CFD broker founded in 2007. The broker offers diverse market coverage to over 7 million clients, spanning traditional assets like currencies and shares, as well as other interesting opportunities such as IPOs. Traders can also access copy trading services, PAMM accounts and investment opportunities. InstaForex is regulated by the BVI FSC.

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    OANDA is an award-winning global broker, established in 1996. The hugely respected brand offers competitive trading accounts and serves clients from 196 countries. It remains a popular option with both beginners and experienced traders thanks to its user-friendly and sophisticated web platform, no minimum deposit and premium currency products and services. The company is also overseen by reputable regulators, including the FCA, ASIC and CIRO.

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    LQDFX is a straight-through processing (STP) broker based in the Marshall Islands. The offshore trading firm offers competitive spreads from 0.0 pips, free deposits, 24/5 support and access to the hugely popular MetaTrader 4 platform. LQDFX also runs a competitive bonus program for short-term traders.

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    Trade Nation is a top FX and CFD broker regulated in multiple jurisdictions including the UK and Australia. The firm offers low-cost fixed and variable spreads on 1000+ assets with robust trading platforms and training materials. The Signal Centre can also be used for trade ideas.

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    BlackBull is a New Zealand-based CFD broker with trading opportunities on forex, stocks, indices, commodities and cryptos. The broker supports the MetaTrader 4 and 5 platforms as well as TradingView, cTrader and a proprietary mobile app. Clients can trade with high leverage and tight spreads from 0 pips on the broker's ECN accounts.

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    Founded in 2009, Vantage offers trading on 1000+ short-term CFD products to over 900,000 clients. You can trade Forex CFDs from 0.0 pips on the RAW account through TradingView, MT4 or MT5. Vantage is ASIC-regulated and client funds are segregated. Copy traders will also appreciate the range of social trading tools.

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    Founded in 2006, FxPro is an established forex, CFD and spread betting broker offering 2100+ assets to over 2 million clients worldwide. The broker is regulated in 4 jurisdictions and offers reliable 24/5 customer support, earning it a high trust and safety score. FxPro has also picked up more than 100 industry accolades for its competitive trading conditions, including fast execution and deep liquidity.

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    Established in 2008 and headquartered in Israel, Plus500 is a prominent brokerage that boasts over 25 million registered traders in over 50 countries. Specializing in CFD trading, the company offers an intuitive, proprietary platform and mobile app. It maintains competitive spreads and does not charge commissions or deposit or withdrawal fees. Plus500 also continues to shine as one of the most trusted brokers with licenses from reputable regulators, including the FCA, ASIC and CySEC.

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    Founded in 1974, IG is part of IG Group Holdings Plc, a publicly traded (LSE: IGG) brokerage. The brand offers spread betting, CFD and forex trading across an almost unrivalled selection of 17,000+ markets, with a range of user-friendly platforms and investing apps. For 50 years, IG has maintained its position as an industry leader, excelling in all key areas for traders.

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    Fusion Markets is an online broker established in 2017 and regulated by the ASIC, VFSC and FSA. It is best known for its low-cost forex and CFD trading, although its multiple account types and copy trading solutions cater to a range of traders. New clients can sign up and start trading in 3 easy steps.

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    GO Markets is an established forex and CFD broker with multiple industry awards and accolades. The ECN/STP broker is popular with budding traders, offering competitive accounts in multiple base currencies and a range of flexible payment methods. With top-tier regulation from CySEC and ASIC, GO Markets is a trusted broker.

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    Markets.com is a respected broker, offering multi-asset trading opportunities through CFDs or spread betting (UK only). Established in 2008, the brand has an impressive 4.3 million registered customers and is overseen by trusted regulators, including the FCA, ASIC and CySEC. 79.1% of retail accounts lose money.

  28. Axi

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    Axi is a global forex and CFD trading firm, founded in 2007 in Sydney, Australia. Highly leveraged trading opportunities plus a $0 minimum deposit make it a popular choice among 60,000+ traders worldwide. Axi also stands out for its resources, including copy trading and Autochartist.

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    Founded in 2015, VT Markets maintains its position as a top Australian multi-asset CFD broker. With 1000+ tradeable instruments and support for the MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 platforms, this broker delivers a wide range of trading opportunities to over 200,000 clients worldwide. VT Markets is regulated by the ASIC, FSCA, and SVGFSA.

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    PrimeXBT is a multi-asset platform offering highly leveraged trading in forex, indices, commodities and cryptocurrencies. The company launched in 2018 and now has over 1 million users from more than 150 countries. With no minimum deposit, copy trading features and low commissions, the broker remains a popular option among crypto trading novices.

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    FXDD is an established forex and CFD broker founded in 2002. Regulated in Malta, Mauritius, Peru and Malaysia, the broker provides secure trading platforms, competitive ECN spreads and reliable 24/7 customer support. Competitive pricing and ultra-low latency is also offered via the broker's Direct Market Access execution model and tier 1 aggregated liquidity.

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    Founded in 2010, ThinkMarkets is a reputable CFD and forex broker with regulation from several top-tier bodies including the FCA and ASIC. The broker provides services to over 450,000 accounts from 11 global offices. Traders can use a bespoke platform, MT4 or MT5 to access a wide variety of assets including 3500+ stocks and ETFs, 46 forex pairs and over 20 cryptocurrencies.

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    M4Markets is an award-winning broker regulated by the CySEC, FSA and DFSA. Although relatively new, the broker continues to improve its offering with a range of innovative tools, platforms and accounts. Beginners can start with just $5, whilst experienced investors can access leverage up to 1:5000.

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    Established in 2013, SuperForex is an offshore CFD and forex broker offering highly leveraged trades on 400+ instruments via the popular MetaTrader 4 platform. The broker has gained clients in over 150 countries and is regulated by the Belize IFSC. With a range of STP/ECN account types, including swap-free, micro and zero spread, this broker continues to suit traders with different styles and setups. SuperForex also offers a range of welcome bonuses and trading contests.

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    Trade.com is a trustworthy online broker with a global presence. The broker offers 2,100+ CFDs in major markets, as well as futures, options and more. The broker offers best-in-class platforms and superior analysis tools for experienced traders. The broker is also regulated by top-tier authorities including the FCA and CySEC.

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    IronFX is a multi-regulated forex and CFD broker founded in 2010. This award-winning firm offers 500+ markets to over 1.5 million clients across 180 countries. Traders can access various account types with competitive pricing on the MT4 platform, as well as 24/5 customer support in 30 languages.

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    Ingot Brokers is a multi-regulated brokerage established in 2006. The broker offers CFD trading opportunities on 1000+ instruments including forex, stocks, indices, commodities and cryptocurrencies. The broker supports the MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 platforms and offers both raw spreads and commission-free account options.

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    FXCM is a respected forex and CFD broker, established since 1999. The British-headquartered broker has won multiple awards and operates in various jurisdictions, including the UK and Australia. With zero commissions, over 400 assets, and a range of analysis tools, FXCM remains a popular choice for traders. The broker is also regulated by top-tier authorities including the FCA and ASIC.

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    Scope Markets offers trading and investing in multiple spot and CFD instruments. The group of brokers is regulated in several locations, including Belize, Kenya and South Africa. Users get competitive trading conditions, a range of payment methods, strong support and can get started in a few straightforward steps.

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    Dukascopy is an online broker operated by a Swiss-regulated banking group. It offers a good selection of 500+ markets, with forex, stocks, gold, ETFs, indices, bonds and cryptocurrencies available. It also offers flexible trading opportunities through the choice of CFDs or binary options. Traders will use MetaTrader 4 or a proprietary platform that is well-suited to automated trading.

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    FinPros is an offshore broker that provides CFD trading on 400+ instruments with high leverage up to 1:500. This is a reliable bet for traders seeking offshore options, with strong security measures, negative balance protection and segregated client funds. The extra features including trading tools and commission-free stocks make this a good choice for beginners, and experienced traders will appreciate tight spreads.

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    Launched in 2017, Videforex offers access to stock, index, crypto, forex and commodities markets via binary options and CFDs. The proprietary platform, mobile app and integrated copy trading are user-friendly and will suit new and casual traders, and the market analysis tools and trading contests provide good ways to improve your trading skills.

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    FXTM is a top-rated forex and CFD broker established in 2011 and operating across 4 continents. The company is secure and regulated by leading authorities, including the FCA and CySEC. Offering 1000+ trading markets and three account types, they cater to all levels of trader.

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    Kwakol Markets is a Nigerian headquartered broker with strong regulatory oversight in Australia and Canada. A great selection of trading assets are available, including synthetic products that simulate realistic market activity. Clients can trade on the MT4, MT5 and cTrader platforms, as well as a copy trading solution whereby a fee is only paid on profitable trades.

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    Axofa is a forex and CFD broker registered in St Vincent and the Grenadines. The broker offers three account types with access to forex, commodities and indices. With ECN processing, low minimum deposits and no commissions, Axofa remains an attractive option, although the broker does not hold a reputable license.

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    SageFX is an offshore, unregulated CFD broker that offers highly leveraged trading on forex, stocks, commodities, indices and crypto via the TradeLocker platform. Traders can access commission-free trading or an ECN account with tight spreads. While the broker's regulatory status is weak, it does provide segregated accounts and two-factor authentication.

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    SimpleFX is an online broker specializing in CFD and cryptocurrency trading, with multi-currency accounts, STP execution, low pricing and no minimum deposit. Bringing innovation and gaining recognition at numerous industry events since 2014, SimpleFX now caters to retail traders from over 190 countries, boasting a client base exceeding 200,000 active users.

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    Errante is a Cyprus-based and regulated forex and CFD broker with leveraged trading on multiple assets, tiered accounts including a zero-spread option, and copy trading support. The broker offers leveraged trading up to 1:30 under its CySEC-regulated branch and 1:500 from an offshore branch, and supports the MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 platforms. Errante's asset list is relatively limited but it does offer fast execution and low latency, and it is a trustworthy brand.

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    ActivTrades is a UK-headquartered CFD and forex broker established in 2001. The brokerage is heavily regulated with licenses from the FCA, SCB, CSSF, BACEN & CVM and CMVM. Over 1000 CFDs are available spanning 7 asset classes. Over 93.60% of orders are executed at the requested price. ActivTraders also offers a selection of leading trading platforms, including MT4, MT5, TradingView and ActivTrader platforms.

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    Swissquote is a Switzerland-based bank and broker that offers online trading and investing. The company has a high safety score and is listed on the Swiss stock exchange. The firm offers a huge range of products, from stocks, ETFs, bonds and futures to 400+ forex and CFD assets. Hundreds of thousands of traders have opened an account with the multi-regulated brokerage. Clients can get started in three easy steps while 24/7 customer support is available to assist new users.

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    FXPrimus is an award-winning CySEC-regulated brokerage offering CFD trading on 200+ instruments via the MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader 5 and cTrader platforms. The choice between a competitive commission-free account and two affordable raw spread options make this an accessible broker for anyone seeking forex, stocks, indices and commodities with high leverage.

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    FP Markets is an ASIC- and CySEC-regulated broker that offers forex and CFD trading on a broad range of assets through the MT4, MT5 and IRESS platforms. With trading available through standard and raw spread accounts on thousands of international stocks, forex, indices, commodities, cryptocurrencies, bonds and ETFs, this broker has some of the most comprehensive market coverage available. FP Markets also offers a full range of additional features, including educational resources and access to powerful software such as Autochartist.

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    HYCM is an online broker with authorization from four international bodies including the FCA and CySEC. The broker offers short-term CFD trading on forex, shares, commodities, indices, ETFs and Bitcoin, and supports the MT4 and MT5 platforms, as well as Trading Central analysis.

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    Global Prime is a multi-regulated trading broker offering 150+ markets. Traders can get started with a $200 minimum deposit and trade with leverage up to 1:100. The firm also has a high trust score and a good reputation with a license from the ASIC.

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    Fortrade is a multi-asset, multi-regulated broker with branches regulated by the FCA, CySEC and ASIC among others. The brand offers trading opportunities on a wide range of instruments including stocks, bonds, commodities, forex, indices, cryptocurrencies and ETFs, with competitive fees and support for MetaTrader 4 and a proprietary platform.

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    Hantec Markets was established in Hong Kong in 1990. Initially, the company concentrated solely on the Chinese and Taiwanese markets. In 2008, the broker rebranded and expanded its presence in the UK, Australia, Japan, and various other countries, before enhancing its footprint in Latin America in 2022. Hantec now stands as a multinational brokerage with 18 offices across Europe and Asia.

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    FXOpen is a multi-asset broker with regulation from several trustworthy bodies including the UK's FCA. The broker offers CFD trading on forex, stocks, commodities, indices, cryptocurrencies and ETFs via the MetaTrader 4 & 5 and TradingView platforms.

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    Kucoin is a crypto exchange that offers trading on 1000+ tokens as well as leveraged trading opportunities via futures and perpetual swaps. This exchange has a slick trading platform that supports robots, allowing traders to implement automated strategies. Other attractive features include a demo account, flexible funding methods and DeFi features like staking and mining.

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    Libertex is a well-known broker, established in 2012. The regulated brand has served numerous clients and is regulated by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission with license number 164/12. Libertex offers CFD trading on 250+ underlying assets, including through an innovative and user-friendly proprietary web trader platform. Choose between CFDs on forex, cryptocurrencies, commodities, stocks, indices and ETFs, which are available with tight spreads and low commissions.

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    Admirals is an FCA- and ASIC-regulated broker with an excellent range of leveraged instruments, including forex, stocks, indices, ETFs, commodities, cryptos and more. The broker supports the MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader 5 and TradingCentral platforms. With both spread betting and CFDs available and thousands of instruments, this broker provides more flexibility than most rivals.

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    TMGM is an ASIC-regulated forex and CFD broker with a vast range of tradeable assets covering forex, stock, index, crypto and commodity markets. The account types on offer provide a flexible choice between no commission or zero spreads, with competitive pricing all-round.

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    Infinox is a UK-based and FCA-regulated broker that offers diverse trading products thanks to its STP and ECN account types and support for MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader 5 and a proprietary platform. Clients can also benefit from a free VPS that can support automated strategies and a social trading platform, catering to both beginner and seasoned traders.

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    AdroFx is an offshore ECN/STP broker that has offered CFD trading since 2018. The firm supports 100+ tradable assets on the popular MetaTrader 4 platform as well as a web trader, Allpips. Eight live accounts are available with no restrictions on trading strategies.

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    Coinexx is an unregulated broker that provides leverage up to 1:500 on forex, commodities, indices and cryptocurrencies with deep liquidity, pure ECN spreads and negative balance protection. The broker uses crypto as base currencies and has low minimum deposit requirements of 0.001 BTC.

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    Amega is an offshore STP broker offering CFD trading on forex, stocks, indices and commodities with very high leverage up to 1:1000 and a zero-commission pricing structure. Traders access markets through the MT5 platform and can test the broker's services through a demo account.

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    Just2Trade is a reliable multi-regulated broker registered with FINRA, NFA and CySEC. The company has 155,000 clients from 130 countries and stands out for its huge suite of instruments and additional features, including a social network, robo advisors and a funded trader programme.

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    FXCentrum is an offshore broker that offers highly leveraged, commission-free trading on diverse instruments with tight spreads. Traders can access forex, equity and commodities markets via MetaTrader 5 or the proprietary FXC platform and use the award-winning ZuluTrade platform for copy trading.

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    Vault Markets is an award-winning brokerage headquartered in Namibia. It is an accessible direct-market-access CFD broker with affordable minimum deposits, flexible funding methods and high leverage. This broker offers a very large range of forex pairs as well as commodities and indices through MetaTrader 4 or MetaTrader 5.

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    Exinity provides flexible low-cost trading in FX, commodities, indices and equities alongside unique education and support provided by teams located across the world. Now operating in the Middle East, through regulation from the Financial Services Regulatory Authority in Abu Dhabi and the Financial Services Commission of Mauritius, Exinity provides a range of services to traders and investors looking for new opportunities in the financial markets.

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    AZAforex is a multi-asset broker founded in 2016. The brand offers a sophisticated proprietary platform, ECN trading and 40+ deposit methods. The brokerage has 120,000+ registered customers with copy trading and a VPS.

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    Capital.com offer CFDs on a range of markets with competitive spreads and zero commissions. The broker also offers the Investmate app, negative balance protection and leveraged trading.

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    Trading 212 is a European and UK-regulated CFD broker that also offers stock investing and ISAs. It’s best known for its commission-free trading model and beginner-friendly app, which has helped it attract 2.5 million users and £3.5 billion in client assets.

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    LegacyFX is a multi-asset broker offering an MT5 download & free signals.

How Negative Balance Protection Works

In trading, leverage allows you to borrow funds and take a position in a trade that exceeds the amount of cash you have deposited. In the UK, the amount of leverage available to retail traders is capped at 1:30, which means that you are able to borrow enough to take a position 30 times larger than the amount of cash you have deposited.

The attraction of this is that it will increase profits from even small price movements, but leverage will work in exactly the same way to magnify losses if a trade turns against you.

ECN brokers with negative balance protection

Example

If you deposit £1,000 cash into your trading account and open a long position with 30x leverage, a 1% price increase, which would ordinarily net you £10, will instead earn you £300. But what if there’s an unexpected and dramatic movement the other way? If the price were to suddenly fall by 10%, you would be down £3,000, losing everything in your account and putting you in £2,000 debt to your broker.

This was precisely the scenario in January 2015, when the Swiss National Bank made the unexpected announcement that it was ending its four-year practice of fixing the price of the Swiss Franc (CHF) at 1.20 to the Euro (EUR). The CHF price suddenly soared by 20% against the euro, taking traders with leveraged short CHF-EUR positions by surprise and leaving a great many of them in debt to their brokers.

Some of the largest online brokers agreed to forgive most of the debt, averting disaster. But the aftermath of the 2015 panic led several leading regulators to implement negative balance protection rules.

The FCA & Negative Balance Protection

The FCA’s permanent negative balance protection regulations, implemented in 2019, cover firms offering contracts for difference (CFD) and similar derivatives, stipulating that retail traders’ losses should not exceed their account balance.

The regulations also state that customers’ positions must be closed out when their funds fall to 50% of the margin they need to maintain an open position on their CFD account – an action that is known as a margin call.

Which brokers offer negative balance protection?

Brokers With Negative Balance Protection

Since UK regulations state that brokers must provide this safeguard as standard for CFD’s and CFD-like products, it may be a sign that something is amiss if you find a broker or trading platform that appears to operate without negative balance protection on leveraged trades. Check for negative balance protection by reading the broker’s terms and conditions or by conducting a search of their help centre. Alternatively, use our list of trading brokers that offer negative balance protection.

Another tell-tale sign of a legitimate brokerage that was introduced in the same 2019 FCA regulation is the requirement for brokers to “provide a standardised risk warning, telling potential customers the percentage of the firm’s retail client accounts that make losses.” If the broker makes this warning during your onboarding process or as you set up trades, it is a good sign that it will also offer negative balance protection. However, it is always worth checking to be sure, since even some reputable trading platforms which operate in the UK – Interactive Brokers, for instance – do not offer negative balance protection on margin accounts.

In some rare situations, an asset’s price movement will be so sudden and so extreme that it will bring your balance to negative cash equity in spite of negative balance protection. In these instances, brokers with negative balance protection should absorb the cost and return your balance to zero.

Margin Calls

Many good brokers will send traders a warning when their account balance gets close to a margin call, giving them time to top up their balance if they wish to keep a trade running. This may sometimes work out well for a trader who has the courage to back their convictions – if the price movement reverses, they can recoup some of their losses on a losing trade and may even make a profit.

But it’s important to recognise that not every trade will work out, and for every last-minute winner, you will find a hundred traders who have multiplied their losses by throwing good money after bad.

Other Safeguards for Leveraged Trades

Online brokers with negative balance protection will stop you from being wiped out in a single bad trade, but a wise trader will usually want to have measures in place to prevent such a course of events in any case. Setting stop-loss orders, for example, is an effective way to limit your losses and preserve enough capital for you to fight another day and recoup your money.

Bottom Line on Negative Balance Protection

Whether you plan to trade stocks, forex, commodities or cryptocurrencies, if you’re making leveraged trades with a UK broker you should check you are covered by negative balance protection. The presence of negative balance protection is a sign that your online broker is legitimate, and it will save you from the worst effects of inattention or bad luck in a trade. Retail traders can also add an extra layer of protection to their trades by setting stop loss orders. Finally, investors should be careful not to negate the effect of negative balance protection by wasting money in a fruitless attempt to turn a losing trade around.

Use our list of the best forex and stock brokers with negative balance protection to start trading.

FAQ

Why Use Brokers With Negative Balance Protection?

To put it simply, negative balance protection is a safeguard that protects retail traders from the most extreme effects of an unlucky or careless leveraged trade by preventing the balance of their trading accounts from going below zero.

Will Negative Balance Protection Stop Me From Losing Money?

Negative balance protection is the last line of defence against being liquidated and placed in debt due to a bad trade. However, investing is an inherently risky business. There is no protection from losing money on any investment, and you should not expect any regulator to step in if you put yourself in debt by losing money you don’t have in a series of bad trades.

Do All UK Trading Brokers Offer Negative Balance Protection?

The British financial regulator, the FCA, requires trading brokers to provide negative balance protection on CFDs and similar products and to close out a customer’s position when their balance falls to 50 percent of the amount required to keep a trade open. If you find a UK broker that does not appear to mention these safeguards for leveraged trades, it would be wise to be extra cautious if you sign up and trade on their platform.

Is Every Trade Covered by Negative Balance Protection?

Many regulators, including those in the UK, Australia, Cyprus and Germany, have made rules requiring negative balance protection in some form. However, by their nature these regulations usually apply to leveraged trades, so trading platforms and brokers which offer different services may not be required to offer this protection. At the same time, some companies that offer leveraged trades do not offer negative balance protection.

Which Broker’s Negative Balance Protection Is Most Reliable?

Since negative balance protection is FCA-regulated, all brokers should follow the same rules when applying it. However, some may provide clients with related services, such as sending them mobile alerts when their balance falls to a level close to a margin call. Pepperstone, CMC Markets and XM are two particularly popular trading brokerages that provide negative balance protection.