GIC Markets Review
GICM (GCI Markets) is a STP forex broker. As you can see there are multiple account types available, but sadly conditions do not improve that drastically for the bigger ones. Islamic (swap-free) versions are available, up to the Standard type.
The Company. Security of Funds
Global Integrated Capitech Markets
St. Vincent and Grenadines
GICM stands for Global Integrated Capitech Markets, which is a company registered on St. Vincent and the Grenadines. The company is under the regulatory zeal of the local Financial Services Authority, although this is not that convincing.
The main reason why we don’t recommend dealing with off-shore companies is the loose regulatory environment in which they operate. If a broker is registered with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) for instance, they would have to follow strict rules. One of them is the mandatory segregation of accounts. This principle stipulates all client funds must be kept in a separate bank account, which the broker can not access at will. This prevents the most obvious scam method – a company claiming to offer access to the markets, but simply taking your money and not offering you anything in return. Another important ASIC ruling is the minimum capital holdings requirement, which is set at AUD 1 million – a unaffordable barrier for most scammers.
Not all offshore brokers are scammers, but the fact they do not follow similar guidelines, while other companies do, makes us distrust most.
Minimum Initial Deposit
GIC Markets has set the entry level at $1, for cent accounts. This is basically as low as you can go. This signals the company is attempting to attract new clients (even if they are relatively small at firs) with the idea, they may decide to deposit more, later on. One of the only brokers we can think of, which has an even lower require is their FCA-regulated industry leader IG.
The minimum deposit required should not be a major issue for a trading veteran. On the other hand, if you are just moving up from demo accounts, it may be wise to risk a small amount at first.
Average spreads & Commissions
Trading costs at GIC Markets vary a lot by account type. While the first account types appear to offer relatively harsh spreads, they get better around the “Standard” level. That being said they are nothing too impressive, just about average and do not improve much with an ECN account. By the way you can check the spreads, offered by some of the word’s leading forex brokers, as they fluctuate, in real time here.
Do keep in mind, a dollar in ECN commissions is worth 0.1 pips in effective value. So for instance, the ECN spread provided by GICM will be around 1.3 pips at the minimum (0.5 from the raw spread + $8 in commissions).
GIC Markets provides a 1:400 maximum leverage ratio. This is a very high level, but it is not that surprising, given the fact there are lots of brokers who offer 1:500 or even more.
The key things to realize about leverage is that one does not have to fully utilize whatever ratio his broker is providing. A firm understanding of how much a pip is worth and how much you should be risking per trade is the foundation of risk management.
GIC Markets’s platform of choice is MetaTrader 4 (MT4). This is a choice, proffered by many brokers, as it is cheaper (and more stable) than creating and new in-house solution. MT4 is also appreciated by many traders, as the platform’s charting package is one of the beat in the industry. Furthermore, an easy too learn coding environment is present. It has inspired many developers to create thousands of new technical indicators and trading robots.
Other than that, mobile app versions of the platform are available. They are some of the most practical tools for catching up with recent developments (and more importantly, your positions) when you are on the go.
That being said we couldn’t get our newly created (for testing purposes) account running on GRIM’s version of MT4. This may be a temporary setback, or a sign of serious server problems. We can’t tell, at this point in time.
Methods of Payment
There are quite a few methods of payment, available at GIC Markets. They range from the more old-school Bank Transfer and Credit/Debit Card to relatively newer online solutions like Neteller, Skrill, Perfect money, WebMoney, Ok Pay and China Union Pay. Do keep in mind, international bank transactions can take up to several business days, so it may be worth it to check out e-wallets.
GIC Markets (GICM) is an off-shore forever broker, which is generally enough for us to advise against trading with them. Trading conditions at the company are average – not too bad, but nothing special. We couldn’t start the trading platform for the purposes of this review. This may be indicative of a temporary glitch, or a more serious issue. There is no way to tell at this point in time.
GIC Markets Review Conclusion
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