Stocks Markets Review
Stocks Markets is a broker, offering CFDs on multiple asset classes, including specific stocks. The company has several account types, as described above. As you may note, the minimum volume per trade is quite high and continues to increase proportionally, with the minimum deposit for the particular account type. We don’t like this fact, from a risk management point of view. Islamic accounts are also offered, with the conditions being the same as those for the Mini account.
The Company. Security of Funds
Stocks Markets is owned by Global Secured Investments, which is based in Anguilla. Trading with an off-shore company is something which we don’t recommend, although there are a few exceptions. More importantly, the company does not fall under any financial regulation.
As you may already know, each country has its own regulatory agency, dedicated specifically to the financial services sector. As such they create and enforce certain specific rules for forex brokers (among other companies). One such regulator is the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC). You may not immediately associate Cyprus with financial markets, but due to its membership in the EU, among other factors, the country has attracted lots of forex brokers. That being the case, one of the most important rules which CySEC has is the implementation of segregated accounts. This entails, that a company must keep its clients’ funds separate from its own, without the ability to “borrow” some from the former pool. Another major beneficial factor is the mandatory participation of all CySEC regulated brokers in a compensation scheme. This is basically an insurance mechanism, which protects clients against their broker going bankrupt. If you trade with such a company your account would be covered, up to EUR 20,000, in case it goes under.
Needles to say, you would not receive these benefits, if you trade with an unregulated company.
Minimum Initial Deposit
The minimum deposit at Stocks Markets is $500, which is quire high for the current state of the industry. Although the company is mostly focused on stock trading, it still is via CFDs i.e. on margin. Although leverage levels for stock trades are much lower, than those offered for currency trading, $500 is still a solid minimum deposit. Just as an example, the FCA-regulated broker IG doesn’t have a minimum requirement – you can open an account with as slow of a deposit, as you are comfortable with.
Do remember this should only be a consideration for newer traders. An experienced one should know, a solid trading strategy requires much more capital, in order to be fully implemented.
Average spreads & Commissions
Stocks Markets offers a lot of different instruments, so the trading conditions will vary drastically. We focus mainly on FX, so we look at the spread on EUR/USD. During our testing, in the early US session it was just above 2.7 pips. This is not nearly good enough for the current state of the industry. Most brokers offer something in the 1.0-1.5 pips range. Have you ever wanted to compare the spreads, offered by brokers in real time, without opening several accounts? Now you can. Feel fee to check out the comparison, which we have set-up here.
The maximum leverage, for forex trading at Stocks Markets is 1:100. Given the contemporary offerings by other brokers, which keep pushing the levels higher and higher. For instance, XM offers 1:888, which is both catchy and absurdly high.
The thing with about leverage which some people don’t understand is that you can simply choose not take full advantage of it. Higher leverage simply means you need less in margin requirements, in order to open new positions and maintain existing ones. A strict risk-management policy will have big portions of your account not used for margin, despite your ability to do so. For example, If you have a $1,000 account with 1:100 leverage, your total market exposure may be $100,000. Utilizing the full $100,000 at the same time would be a risky endeavor.
Stocks Markets puts more emphasis on stock trading, as their name suggests. That being the case they only offer CFDs on stocks, not real trading on the respective exchanges. The leverage ratios which they show, for 60 stocks of popular companies are in the 1:10- 1:20 range, which is ok for such an asset class. A couple of companies are presented as 1:200, but we are fairly convinced this is just a typo.
Stocks Markets provides its services via Sirix.This is an intuitive platform, which people familiar with MetaTrader4 would easily catch on to. The most unique feature are definitely the social trading bars on the right side. They include a feed from the platform’s proprietary pool of traders, which show their recent trades, as well as a list of the best performers. On the other hand some Technical indicators, like the ones developed by William Gann are not yet available. Here is a screenshot of the platform:
The platform has a web version as well as mobile versions for both Android and iOS. There are slightly different versions smartphones and tablets. This is a rather unique approach, as most other platforms either offer a simple web based alternative or a single app for all mobile devices. Given the disparity in screen sizes between phones and tablets, two specific iterations actually makes a lot of sense.
Methods of Payment
Stocs Markets offers several payment methods. They include: Bank Transfer, Credit/Debit Card and Neteller and CashU. As you may already know, bank transfers may take several business days to complete, so using an e-wallet may be a more suitable option for you.
Stocks Markets Review Conclusion
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