Summary

Recommended for forex and CFD traders who value easy account opening and free deposit/withdrawal options

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74.25% of retail CFD accounts lose money

IC Markets is an Australia-based global forex broker that was founded in 2007. The company has several branches and is regulated by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC), the Seychelles Financial Supervisory Authority (FSA) and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).

IC Markets is considered safe because it is regulated by the top-tier ASIC.

Disclaimer: CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 74.25% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Overall Rating
4.4
Fees
4.3
Account opening
5.0
Deposit and withdrawal
4.9
Trading platform
3.2
Markets and products
1.8
Research
3.8
Customer service
3.6
Education
4.5

IC Markets pros and cons

IC Markets has low forex fees. It also has an easy and fast account opening process, while depositing and withdrawals are free and user-friendly as well.

On the negative side, IC Markets has a limited product portfolio, offering only CFDs and forex. We also received slow and irrelevant answers on live chat. Lastly, there is no investor protection for non-EU clients.

Pros Cons
Low forex fees Limited product selection
Easy and fast account opening Slow live chat support
Free deposit and withdrawal No investor protection for non-EU clients
IC Markets main features and highlights
🗺️ Country of regulation Cyprus, Australia, Seychelles
💰 Trading fees class Low
💰 Inactivity fee charged No
💰 Withdrawal fee amount $0
💰 Minimum deposit $200
🕖 Time to open an account 1 day
💳 Deposit with credit/debit card Available
👛 Depositing with electronic wallet Available
💱 Number of base currencies supported 10
🎮 Demo account provided Yes
🛍️ Products offered Forex, CFD, Crypto
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74.25% of retail CFD accounts lose money

Author of this review

Ádám Nasli

Author of this review

Ádám is a motivated finance expert with over two years of experience in banking and investment, and a professional degree in this field. He's eager to help people find the best investment provider for them, and to make the investment sector as transparent as possible.

Ádám Nasli

Broker Expert

Ádám is a motivated finance expert with over two years of experience in banking and investment, and a professional degree in this field. He's eager to help people find the best investment provider for them, and to make the investment sector as transparent as possible.

Everything you find on BrokerChooser is based on reliable data and unbiased information. We combine our 10+ years finance experience with readers feedback. Read more about our methodology

IC Markets review
Fees

4.3
IC Markets has low trading and non-trading fees. There is no inactivity or withdrawal fee. On the negative side, financing rates for CFDs are high.
Pros Cons
Low trading fees High financing rate for CFDs
Low non-trading fees
Low forex fees
IC Markets fees snapshot
Assets Fee level Fee terms
EURUSD Low MetaTrader 4 Raw account pricing: $3.5 per lot plus spread cost. 0.1 pips is the average spread cost during peak trading hours.
GBPUSD Low MetaTrader 4 Raw account pricing: $3.5 per lot plus spread cost. 0.4 pips is the average spread cost during peak trading hours.
S&P 500 CFD Low The fees are built into the spread, 0.6 is the average spread cost during peak trading hours.
Inactivity fee Low No inactivity fee

How we ranked fees

We ranked IC Markets's fee levels as low, average or high based on how they compare to those of all reviewed brokers.

First, let's go over some basic terms related to broker fees. What you need to keep an eye on are trading fees and non-trading fees.

In the sections below, you will find the most relevant fees of IC Markets for each asset class. For example, in the case of forex and stock index trading the most important fees are spreads, commissions and financing rates.

We also compared IC Markets's fees with those of two similar brokers we selected, Pepperstone and Fusion Markets. This selection is based on objective factors such as products offered, client profile, fee structure, etc. See a more detailed rundown of IC Markets alternatives.

To have a clear overview of IC Markets, let's start with the trading fees.

IC Markets trading fees

IC Markets trading fees are low. There are different cost structures for different account types. We tested the 'True ECN with MetaTrader' account, which charges a commission but offers tight spreads.

We know it's hard to compare trading fees for forex brokers. So how did we approach the problem of making their fees clear and comparable? We compare brokers by calculating all the fees of a typical trade for selected products.

We have chosen popular instruments in each asset class usually provided by the forex brokers:

  • Forex: EURUSD, GBPUSD, AUDUSD, EURCHF and EURGBP
  • Stock index CFDs: SPX and EUSTX50

A typical trade means buying a leveraged product, holding it for one week and then selling. For the volume, we chose a $20,000 position for forex and a $2,000 position for stock index and stock CFD transactions. The leverage we used was:

  • 30:1 for forex
  • 20:1 for stock index CFDs

These catch-all benchmark fees includes spreads, commissions and financing costs for all brokers. Let's see the verdict for IC Markets fees.

Forex fees

IC Markets forex fees are generally low and in line with its main competitors.

IC Markets forex benchmark fees of a $20,000 30:1 long position held for one week
  IC Markets Pepperstone Fusion Markets
EURUSD benchmark fee $15.8 $14.8 $12.8
GBPUSD benchmark fee $12.1 $12.4 $7.8
AUDUSD benchmark fee $10.6 $11.9 $7.1
EURCHF benchmark fee $4.8 $3.1 $3.2
EURGBP benchmark fee $9.9 $10.7 $8.7

CFD fees

IC Markets has generally low CFD trading fees.

IC Markets CFD fees for a $2,000 long position held for one week
  IC Markets Pepperstone Fusion Markets
S&P 500 index CFD fee $2.5 $2.0 $1.7
Europe 50 index CFD fee $1.9 $1.6 $1.9

The fees of stock index CFDs are built into the spreads. On the negative side, the financing rates are high.

Non-trading fees

IC Markets has low non-trading fees. There are no inactivity, deposit or account fees.

There is no fee for withdrawing funds using credit/debit cards or electronic wallets. However, international bank withdrawals are charged an AUD 20 fee.

IC Markets non-trading fees
  IC Markets Pepperstone Fusion Markets
Account fee No No No
Inactivity fee No No No
Deposit fee $0 $0 $0
Withdrawal fee $0 $0 $0

IC Markets review
Account opening

5.0
The account opening process at IC Markets is user-friendly and fully digital. It was also very quick, as our account was approved within a day.
Pros Cons
Fast None
Fully digital
Low minimum deposit

Can you open an account?

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74.25% of retail CFD accounts lose money

IC Markets accepts customers from all around the world. A few notable exceptions include the US, Canada and Israel.

What is the minimum deposit at IC Markets?

The minimum deposit at IC Markets is $200. This is considered low, since other CFD brokers usually require a minimum of around $2,000.

Account types

There are three account types at IC Markets, which differ in their fee structure and the available trading platform:

IC Markets account types
  True ECN with cTrader True ECN with MetaTrader – Tested Account Standard
Commission per lot (round turn*) $6 $7 No commission
Spread Low spreads Low spreads High spreads
Trading platform cTrader MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5
Available accounts by ownership Individual, joint, corporate Individual, joint, corporate Individual, joint, corporate
Islamic account available** Yes Yes Yes

*Round turn means that you open and close the position.

**Islamic accounts are also called swap-free accounts. With Islamic accounts, a flat commission is charged if you hold your leveraged position overnight instead of the percentage-based financing rates.

We also liked that you can have several sub-accounts with different base currencies.

How to open your account

The IC Markets account opening process is easy and fully digital.  The online application takes roughly 10-15 minutes and our account was approved within one business day. 

The five steps of IC Markets account opening:

  1. Provide some contact information, like your email address.
  2. Fill out your personal information, like your date of birth and address.
  3. Choose the account type and the base currency.
  4. Complete a survey about your trading experience.
  5. Verify your identity and residency by uploading a copy of your passport or ID, and a bank statement or utility bill. 
IC Markets review - Account opening

IC Markets review
Deposit and withdrawal

4.9
IC Markets's depositing and withdrawal services are great. Many options are available for moving your money in and out, and most of them are free of charge. On the negative side, international bank withdrawals have a high fee.
Pros Cons
Credit/Debit card available AUD 20 fee for international bank withdrawal
No deposit fee
Several account base currencies

Account base currencies

At IC Markets, you can choose from 10 base currencies for your account. These are: EUR, USD, GBP, AUD, SGD, NZD, JPY, CHG, KHD, CAD.

Base currencies at IC Markets vs similar brokers
  IC Markets Pepperstone Fusion Markets
Number of base currencies 10 9 6

Why does this matter? For two reasons. If you fund your account in the same currency as your bank account or you trade assets in the same currency as your account base currency, you don't have to pay a conversion fee.

A convenient way to save on currency conversion fees is by opening a multi-currency bank account at a digital bank.

 

A convenient way to save on currency conversion fees is by opening a multi-currency bank account at a digital bank. These usually offer bank accounts in several currencies with great currency exchange rates, as well as free or cheap international bank transfers. Opening an account only takes a few minutes on your phone.

Compare digital banks

Deposit fees and options

IC Markets deposits are free of charge. There are many depositing options (ways to add money to your account), although some don't support every account base currency. For example, BPay accepts only AUD payments.

IC Markets deposit options
  IC Markets Pepperstone Fusion Markets
Bank transfer Yes Yes Yes
Credit/Debit card Yes Yes Yes
Electronic wallets Yes Yes Yes

A bank transfer can take several business days, while payment with credit/debit card is instant. Also, you can only deposit money from accounts that are in your name.

IC Markets review - Deposit and withdrawal - Deposit

IC Markets withdrawal fees and options

Withdrawing funds from IC Markets is free for credit/debit cards, bank transfers to Australian bank accounts, and electronic wallets. Withdrawal by international bank transfer, however, has a quite high, AUD 20 fee.

IC Markets withdrawal fees and options
  IC Markets Pepperstone Fusion Markets
Bank Transfer Yes Yes Yes
Credit/Debit card Yes Yes Yes
Electronic wallets Yes Yes No
Withdrawal fee $0 $0 $0

How long does it take to withdraw money from IC Markets? We tested withdrawal by bank transfer and it took 2 business days.

You can only withdraw money to accounts in your name.

How do you withdraw money from IC Markets?

  1. Once logged in to your account, scroll over 'Transfers' in the menu.
  2. Select 'Withdraw Funds' from the drop-down menu.
  3. Add your bank account information if you have not already. 
  4. Select the amount you wish to withdraw and click 'Submit'.

Compare to other brokers

IC Markets review
Web trading platform

2.8
The web trading platform of IC Markets is provided by MetaTrader. It is highly customizable, available in many languages, and has a clear fee report. On the other hand, it lacks a two-step login and price alerts, and the design is outdated.
Pros Cons
Clear fee report No two-step (safer) login
Good customizability (for charts, workspace) No price alerts
Order confirmation Poor design
IC Markets platforms to choose from
Trading platform Score Available
Web 2.8 stars Yes
Mobile 3.8 stars Yes
Desktop 3.3 stars Yes

IC Markets doesn't have its own self-developed trading platform. Its most used trading platform is MetaTrader 4, a third-party platform. It also has other platforms available, such as MetaTrader 5 and cTrader, which come with their own commission structures. We reviewed MetaTrader 4 because it is the most widely used.

MetaTrader 4 is available in an exceptionally large number of languages.

IC Markets web trading platform languages
Arabic Bulgarian Chinese Croatian Czech Danish
Dutch     English Estonian Finnish French German
Greek Hebrew Hindi Hungarian Indonesian Italian
Japanese Korean Latvian Lithuanian Malay Mongolian
Persian Polish Portuguese Romanian Russian Serbian
Slovak Slovenian Spanish Swedish Tajik Thai
Traditional Chinese Turkish Ukrainian Uzbek Vietnamese  

Look and feel

The IC Markets web trading platform has great customizability. It is easy to change the size and the position of the tabs.

However, the platform feels outdated and some features are hard to find. For example, it took some time until we found how to add an asset to the watchlist.

IC Markets review - Web trading platform

Login and security

IC Markets provides only a one-step login. A two-step authentication would be more secure.

Search functions

The search functions are OK. You can find the assets listed by category. However, we missed the usual search function where you can type in the asset's name manually.

IC Markets review - Web trading platform - Search

Placing orders

You can use the basic order types, but you will not find very sophisticated orders like 'one cancels the other.' The following order types are available:

  • Market
  • Limit
  • Stop-loss

If you are not familiar with order types, read this overview.

There are also order time limits you can use:

  • Good 'til canceled (GTC)
  • Good 'til time (GTT)
IC Markets review - Web trading platform - Order panel

Alerts and notifications

You can't set alerts and notifications on the IC Markets web trading platform. This feature is available only on the desktop trading platform.

Portfolio and fee reports

IC Markets has clear portfolio and fee reports. You can easily see your profit-loss balance and the commissions you paid. These reports can be found under the 'History' tab, but we didn't find a way to download them.

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IC Markets review
Mobile trading platform

3.8
IC Markets has a great mobile trading platform, offered by MetaTrader 4. It is well-designed and user-friendly. However, it lacks a safe login.
Pros Cons
User-friendly No two-step (safer) login
Good search function No Touch/Face ID login
Price alerts

Similarly to the web trading platform, IC Markets offers MetaTrader 4 as a mobile trading platform. MetaTrader 4 is available for both iOS and Android, and we tested it on both.

After you download the MT4 mobile trading platform, you have to access the ICMarkets-Live server. 

Just like at the web trading platform, you can choose from many languages on the mobile trading platform too. Changing the language is a bit tricky on Android devices: you can do it only if you change the default language of your mobile.

IC Markets mobile trading platform languages
Arabic Chinese (Simplified) Chinese(Traditional) Czech English
French German Greek Hindi Indonesian
Italian Japanese Korean Polish Portuguese
Portuguese (Brazil) Russian Spanish Thai Turkish
Ukrainian Vietnamese      

Look and feel

IC Markets has a great mobile trading platform, we really liked its design and user-friendliness. You will easily find all the features.

IC Markets review - Mobile trading platform

Login and security

Similarly to the web trading platform, IC Markets provides only a one-step login. A two-step login would be safer.

You can't use fingerprint or Face ID authentication. Providing this feature would be more convenient.

Search functions

The search functions are good. You can search by typing the name of the product or by navigating the category folders.

IC Markets review - Mobile trading platform - Search

Placing orders

You can use the same order types and order time limits as the ones on the web trading platform

IC Markets review - Mobile trading platform - Order panel

Alerts and notifications

You can set alerts and notifications, although only on the desktop trading platform. It would be much easier if you could set these notifications on the mobile trading platform too.

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IC Markets review
Desktop trading platform

3.3
In design and functionality, IC Markets's MetaTrader 4 desktop platform is almost the same as the web trading platform. One major difference is that you can set price alerts on it.
Pros Cons
Clear fee report No two-step (safer) login
Good customizability (for charts, workspace) Poor design
Price alerts

IC Markets offers MetaTrader 4 as a desktop trading platform.

It has the same design, is available in the same languages, offers the same order types, has the same search functions, and the same portfolio and fee reports as the web trading platform.

The major difference is that you can set alerts and notifications in the form of mobile push or email notifications on the desktop trading platform. To set email or mobile notifications, you have to add your email address and mobile MetaQuotes ID (you can find it in the MT4 app's settings). You can add them if you go to 'Tools' and then 'Options'.

IC Markets review - Desktop trading platform

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IC Markets review
Markets and products

1.8
At IC Markets, you can trade only with forex and CFDs. This means that many popular asset classes, like real stocks or ETFs, are not available.

IC Markets is primarily a forex broker, but it also provides some CFDs. To learn more about CFDs please read our CFD trading tips.

Disclaimer: CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 74.25% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

IC Markets's CFD and crypto selection is wider, while its forex product lineup is smaller than at its closest competitors.

IC Markets product selection
  IC Markets Pepperstone Fusion Markets
Currency pairs (#) 61 61 81
Stock index CFDs (#) 25 14 12
Stock CFDs* (#) 110 64 -
ETF CFDs (#) 30 - -
Commodity CFDs (#) 20 16 15
Bond CFDs (#) 9 - -
Cryptos (#) 10 5 4

*Stock CFDs are available only on the MetaTrader 5 platform.

We really liked that you can change the default leverage size of the products when trading. This is a great feature.

Changing the leverage manually is a very useful feature when you want to lower the risk of your trade.

IC Markets review
Research

3.8
IC Markets has great research tools. You can find trading ideas based on technical tools, read quality news, and use good charting tools. However, there are no fundamental data available.
Pros Cons
Trading ideas No fundamental data available
Quality news flow
User-friendly

You can find research tools in different places at IC Markets:

  • in Client Login, under 'Trading Tools'
  • in the MetaTrader 4 and 5 trading platforms

Except for charting, we tested research tools that can be found under 'Trading Tools'. For charting, we tested the MetaTrader charting tools.

Trading ideas

IC Markets provides various trading ideas, based on technical tools like indicators and price levels.

You can access these research tools if you click on 'Trading Central' or go to 'Featured Ideas'.

IC Markets review - Research - Recommendations

Fundamental data

IC Markets does not offer fundamental data.

Charting

IC Markets has OK charting tools. You can use 31 technical indicators and other technical tools, such as trendlines and Fibonacci retracement.

On the other hand, the design is outdated and some features are hard to use. For example, we had difficulty finding how we could remove an indicator from the chart.

IC Markets review - Research - Charting

News feed

The news feed, called 'Market Buzz', is a visually appealing interface that offers news analytics and sentiment indicators. Individual news stories, provided by third-party news sites such as ForexLive or tickerreport.com, open on a new page, which is rather cumbersome. The news feed is also cluttered with Twitter messages. 

IC Markets review - Research - News

Other research tools you will enjoy

If you prefer API trading, IC Markets offers cAlgo, which uses the C# language.

Compare research pros and cons

IC Markets review
Customer service

3.6
IC Markets has great phone and email support. On the negative side, its live chat is low-quality and slow.
Pros Cons
Phone support Slow and not useful live chat
Live chat
Fast response time

You can contact IC Markets via:

  • Live chat
  • Phone
  • Email

IC Markets has great phone support. We were connected to the customer service representative within a minute and we received relevant answers.

The email support works very well. We sent four emails and got answers within a day for all of them. These answers were helpful and relevant. We also liked that they asked for feedback about the support.

The live chat service, however, could be much better. It is slow, as the average wait time for an answer was more than 10 minutes. Also, the responses we received were not always relevant. For example, we had to ask several questions until we got information on how their financing rates work.

We appreciated the 24/7 availability of customer support.

IC Markets review - Customer Service

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74.25% of retail CFD accounts lose money

IC Markets review
Education

4.5
IC Markets does a great job in its education services. It offers many great quality tools on its website: you can use a demo account, watch trading platform videos and read educational articles.
Pros Cons
Demo account Videos are hard to find on the site
Trading platform tutorial
Educational videos

At IC Markets you can learn in the following ways:

  • Demo account
  • Platform tutorial videos
  • General educational videos
  • Webinars
  • Quality educational articles

Relevant content can be found on the website's 'Education' section and the IC Markets blog. These are well-structured and cover useful topics like technical analysis and risk management.

The general educational videos are very high-quality. However, they can only be found on IC Markets's Vimeo channel, not directly from the website or the trading platform.

IC Markets review - Education

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74.25% of retail CFD accounts lose money

IC Markets review
Safety

IC Markets is regulated by several financial authorities globally, including the top-tier ASIC. On the negative side, the company is not listed on any stock exchange and does not disclose financial information publicly.
Pros Cons
Long track record Not listed on stock exchange
Negative balance protection for EU customers Financial information is not publicly available

Is IC Markets regulated?

Yes, it is regulated by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC), the Seychelles Financial Supervisory Authority (FSA) and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).

IC Markets is based in Australia and was founded in 2007.

Is IC Markets safe?

To be certain if a brokerage is safe, we highly advise that you check two facts:

  • how you are protected if something goes wrong
  • what the background of the broker is

How you are protected

Depending on your country of residency, you can open an account at one or more of IC Markets's legal entities. 

This is important for you because the investor protection amount and the regulator differ based on which entity you belong to. 

IC Markets investor protection
Country of clients Protection amount Regulator Legal entity
EEA, excluding Belgium, Switzerland, Latvia €20,000 Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC) IC Markets (EU) Ltd
All other countries, except Australia No protection Seychelles Financial Supervisory Authority (FSA) IC Markets (SC) Ltd
Australia No protection Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) International Capital Markets Pty Ltd

IC Markets provides negative balance protection for EU retail customers. If the balance on your account goes into negative, you will be protected.

Background

IC Markets was established in 2007. The longer track record a broker has, the more proof we have that it has successfully survived previous financial crises.

Find your safe broker

IC Markets review
Bottom line

IC Markets is a great forex broker. 

Its forex fees are low and account opening is fast and easy. Deposits and withdrawals are free and  the process is user-friendly. The education section of the website is also a plus.

On the other hand, IC Markets provides only forex and CFDs products for trading. In addition, live chat support could be better and non-EU clients are not covered by any investor protection scheme.

Feel free to try IC Markets, as you will have an account within a day and there is no inactivity fee.

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74.25% of retail CFD accounts lose money

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