IronFX Review 2023
IronFX is an online broker that offers forex and CFD speculation to a global client base, including investors from the UK. This 2023 broker review delves into key considerations for those who are considering registering with the trading service, such as account types, available instruments, compatible trading platforms and supported deposit methods. Read on to find out whether you should sign up for an IronFX account.
Founded in 2010, IronFX Group has provided forex and CFD trading to traders worldwide for over a decade. Since setting up its first base in Cyprus, the broker has expanded to offices in London, Johannesburg and Sydney. The broker successfully applied for a UK FCA licence soon after setting up its London office and boasts regulation from several other bodies, such as CySEC and FSCA South Africa.
IronFX became a prominent global broker soon after its launch due to high profile sponsorships from partners that include FC Barcelona and significant welcome and deposit bonus programs. However, the company has fallen foul of regulations in Europe on several occasions, with clients accusing the company of withholding their funds. While the broker is no longer under investigation from CySEC after a €335,000 settlement in 2015, many may still be wary of the company after this scandal.
IronFX offers a range of CFD instruments across multiple markets, including forex, indices and stocks and commodities. However, there are no cryptocurrency products available to UK clients, so Bitcoin and Ethereum enthusiasts should look elsewhere.
Forex is the most popular trading instrument, with trillions of pounds worth of currency traded every day. IronFX offers 120 currency pairs to its users, with major, minor and exotic markets well covered.
Spreads start from 0.0 pips on selected major pairs using a low spread account type.
Currency investors also have the option of six currency futures products, including USD, EUR and GBP markets.
Spreads start from 0.0002 pips, though these markets are subject to commission fees of $10 per round lot.
IronFX supports sixteen spot and eight futures indices markets from major global, US and EU exchanges. Three e-mini futures instruments are available, allowing investors to speculate in smaller amounts than is standard.
Spreads start at 2.0 pips on spot and 0.5 pips on futures indices.
Those that desire to speculate on equities prices with IronFX have over 100 assets to choose from, with stocks from the US, EU, UK and other selected global exchanges supported. Unfortunately, this number is somewhat limited compared to major competitors, while some investors may be dismayed by the lack of support for ETF speculation.
Minimum spreads start from 0.3 pips and commission on shares is levied at 0.1% of the trade.
Nine spot commodities markets are offered, consisting of fuels and precious metals such as gold, palladium and Brent crude oil. Of these, gold and silver have both EUR and USD base currency pairs. Spot commodities spreads start from 0.04 pips on gold up to 4.5 pips on palladium.
Additionally, IronFX offers twelve futures markets, covering soft commodities like wheat and cotton, energies such as natural gas and a singular metals market in copper. Spreads start at 0.002 pips, while commission is charged at $10 per round lot.
IronFX is licenced in the UK by the FCA, so its leverage allowance to retail clients is restricted. Users can utilise leverage rates of up to 1:30 on major forex pairs, while minor and exotic pairs are restricted to 1:20.
1:20 leverage is also available on major global indices and gold markets, with a lower level of 1:10 available on all other commodities and indices. Share CFDs are eligible for leverage of up to 1:5.
Several account types are boasted by IronFX to cater to the needs of different investors. All accounts allow both hedging and netting through the MT4 trading platform.
The first category of trading accounts contains the fixed/floating spread variants. Clients can choose between standard, premium and VIP floating spread accounts or the zero fixed account for zero spread compatible trading. Spreads start from 1.8 pips, 1.6 pips, 1.4 pips and 0.0 pips, respectively, and only the zero fixed account is subject to commission.
While little information is provided for the first three trading accounts, the progressively lower minimum spreads would suggest that eligibility for each account is based on trading volume.
The standard and premium accounts offer GBP, EUR, USD and several other account base currencies, while the VIP and zero fixed accounts are limited to USD.
IronFX also provides STP and ECN offerings for traders that prefer market orders. These are the no commission, zero spread and absolute zero accounts. Spreads start at 1.7 pips on the no commission STP execution-style account. In comparison, the absolute zero account starts at 0.3 pips. The zero spread ECN variant levies commissions on trades in exchange for raw spreads as low as 0.0 pips.
Many traders appreciate the chance to practise trading on a new brokerage platform before opening a real account. With this in mind, the broker offers a risk-free demo account for clients to try out strategies, learn new markets and test EAs.
For traders that cannot pay interest due to their religious beliefs, IronFX provides a swap-free Islamic account. However, it is worth noting that the broker only allows swap-free positions for a maximum of ten days to prevent arbitrage through hedging. Any subsequent period is subject to standard swap fees.
While the firm only supports one trading platform, clients will be happy to hear that it is the industry standard MetaTrader 4. As a leading forex and CFD trading platform for almost 20 years, MT4 and its browser-based companion excel in their expert advisor (EA) and custom indicator integration.
MetaTrader 4 features nine timeframes and 30 technical indicators as standard, as well as advanced drawing tools and customisable alerts. The platform is available for free download for Mac, Windows and Linux computers and through the aforementioned web trader.
MetaTrader 5 is not supported, nor has the broker announced plans to integrate this platform.
For accessing trades on the go, MetaTrader 4 has an app that is available to download for iOS and Android mobile phones and tablets. However, account management must take place via the mobile website as the broker has no dedicated app.
Trading fees significantly impact an investor’s decision to sign up to a broker like IronFX. In terms of commission for the zero fixed and zero spread ECN account, IronFX charges $10 per round lot, while share CFD trades are subject to a 10% commission. Swap fees vary from asset to asset and are available to review on the MT4 platform.
The broker has come under fire from clients and reviews alike for its high inactivity fees. The broker enforces a $50 charge for one year without login and trading and a 3% admin fee on account balances when regular deposits and withdrawals are made without trades.
Deposit & Withdrawal Fees
IronFX does not add any fees to its supported deposit methods, though both regional and international bank wire transfers may be subject to charges from banks. Worryingly, the company is not very transparent about its withdrawal methods or fees and many report significant admin fees on some of the withdrawal methods.
IronFX clients have several options when it comes to deposit methods. Credit and debit cards, bank wire transfers and Skrill and Neteller payments are the choices best suited to UK clients. Unfortunately, prepaid cards, PayPal and crypto deposits are all unavailable.
While the broker does not state a minimum deposit, there is a maximum deposit amount of $50,000 or equivalent for most payment options.
The withdrawal process is far less clear, with no information on the website regarding withdrawal time, methods or fees. However, we can assume that investors can also use all supported deposit methods for withdrawals. In addition, most brokers have a withdrawal processing time of between 24 and 48 hours.
Security & Regulation
While CySEC regulates the IronFX global brokerage arm, UK clients will be pleased to learn that the highly respected FCA oversees the domestic operations. This additional regulation may have been instrumental in the withdrawal issues only affecting non-UK traders.
Due to FCA regulation, the broker must hold client funds in segregated bank accounts and participate in the Financial Services Compensation Scheme, which covers client funds for up to £85,000 in the event of broker insolvency.
While accounts gain additional security from using a separate login for the client portal and MetaTrader 4 platform, the most substantial protection measures like two-factor authentication (2FA) are not supported.
IronFX provides several options to access support, including a live chat feature, a dedicated email address and a UK help phone number. There is also a direct trading desk contact number for the London office address:
- Support Email Address: email@example.com
- Support Contact Number: +44 (0) 207 416 6670
- Trading Desk Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Trading Desk Phone Number: +44 (0) 203 302 7222
Most brokers feature an FAQ section where clients can find answers to common queries like account login issues or withdrawal problems. However, the broker’s UK website has no such page. While the international site has a well-stocked FAQ section, much of the information may not be relevant for UK investors.
The firm also runs Twitter, Instagram and Facebook accounts, where clients can keep up to date on market and platform updates and contact the support team.
As with the FAQ section, the UK site does not offer any educational content. However, the ironfx.com international domain features the IronFX school. This contains podcasts and articles designed to provide a comprehensive overview of forex and CFD trading, with content for beginners and experienced investors alike.
Advantages Of IronFX
- MT4 access
- Demo trading
- FCA regulated
- Large forex range
- STP & ECN accounts
- Spot & futures trading
Disadvantages Of IronFX
- Past issues with trustworthiness
- Limited information on website
- Limited leverage rates
- High inactivity fees
- Withdrawal fees
Many of IronFX’s competitors offer new clients a welcome or deposit bonus to entice them onto their platforms. Indeed, the international brokerage gained notoriety for its significant bonus programs in its early days. However, due to FCA regulations, the broker cannot offer any promotions to its UK clients.
Moreover, the broker’s demo contests are not available to traders in the UK.
While IronFX has an economic calendar with upcoming market news, investors will have to navigate to the international site to access this feature. Furthermore, the EA builder, copy trading service and free VPS provided by the firm are also only available on the global site. However, it is not clear whether these trade resources are available to UK account holders or not.
IronFX asset trading hours are generally 24/5 for forex pairs and most CFDs. Outside these hours, trading will not be available. However, indices and stocks are only accessible during the opening hours of their respective exchanges.
Account-holders can access the client portal at any time to monitor their accounts or deposits and withdrawals.
Despite the global presence of IronFX, investors may be put off by the history of complaints about the international branch withholding funds from clients. While the UK branch of the broker has encountered no such issues and is regulated by the more reputable FCA, the firm is let down by a very poor UK site, lacking the additional features or educational content expected of a major online broker. While the choice between live, ECN and STP IronFX accounts will appeal to some, the lack of transparency around withdrawal fees may be a red flag many can not ignore.
Is IronFX A Good Broker?
IronFX is an FCA regulated broker that offers low-fee investing on a wide range of trading products. However, the firm’s UK website is missing some information and there have been negative reviews from previous customers.
Does IronFX Offer A No Deposit Bonus?
Due to FCA regulations, IronFX does not offer any welcome or deposit bonus incentives to new and existing clients.
Can I Deposit Onto IronFX With A Prepaid Card?
IronFX only supports Visa and Mastercard debit and credit cards as a deposit method, as well as bank wire transfers, Neteller and Skrill.
Does IronFX Support A PMAM Account?
While the international arm of IronFX offers a percentage allocation money management (PMAM) account, it is unclear whether this option is available to UK users.
Is There An IronFX Margin Calulator?
Unfortunately, IronFX does not offer a margin calculator on its UK site.
Compare IronFX with Other Brokers
These brokers are the most similar to IronFX:
- Pepperstone - Pepperstone is a leading online broker with over 400,000 clients in more than 175 countries. The top-rated brokerage offers excellent market access, industry-leading platforms in MT4, MT5, TradingView and cTrader, plus low fees with no hidden charges. Pepperstone is also heavily regulated with a high trust score, holding licenses with reputable bodies, including the FCA, ASIC, DFSA, and CySEC.
- FP Markets - 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.
- Avatrade - 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.
IronFX Feature Comparison
|Markets||Forex, Stocks, Commodities||Forex, Stocks, Commodities, Crypto||Forex, Stocks, Commodities, Crypto||Forex, Stocks, Commodities|
|Minimum Trade||0.01 Lots||0.01 Lots||0.01 Lots||0.01 Lots|
|Regulators||CySEC, FCA, FSCA, BMA / Bermuda||FCA, ASIC, CySEC, DFSA, CMA, BaFin, SCB||ASIC, CySEC, ESMA||ASIC, CySEC, FSCA, ISA, CBol, FSA, FRSA|
|Platforms||MT4||MT4, MT5, cTrader||MT4, MT5, cTrader||MT4, MT5|
|Leverage||1:30 (FCA), 1:30 (CySEC), 1:500 (FSCA), 1:1000 (BM)||1:30 (Retail), 1:500 (Pro)||1:30 (UK), 1:500 (Global)||1:30 (Retail) 1:400 (Pro)|
Trading Instruments Comparison
IronFX vs Other Brokers
Compare IronFX with any other broker by selecting the other broker below.
|IronFX is a multi-regulated broker offering CFD trading on forex, stocks, indices and commodities through the MetaTrader 4 platform. The broker offers various account types with competitive pricing, including spreads from zero on STP/ECN accounts. Leverage varies by regulator between 1:30 and 1:1000.|