Is IG really free?
IG does charge a commission for real stock trading on US markets, so in this sense it is not a free-to-trade broker. However, it might still be a reasonable choice for some of you, as there are many other aspects other than commissions that are important when you choose a broker. If you wish to stick with IG though, then you will find the fees they charge below. Alternatively, you could check our article detailing the best zero commission brokers and how their apps scored in our test.
We should note that the payment-for-order-flow model, which is used by some zero-commission brokers to generate income (rather than relying on commissions), could potentially create a conflict of interest between you and your broker. This could result in trade execution (like routing your orders to specific market makers) that might be unfavorable for you under certain market conditions, especially when using market orders (as opposed to limit orders, which seem to be less affected).
Overview of IG fees and charges
When it comes to brokerage fees, IG is a mixed bag. To see how they may affect you, first you need to figure out your approach to trading - i.e. whether you are more of a buy-and-hold investor or if you want to trade frequently; or what type of assets and in what volumes you'll want to trade. Alternatively, use our questionnaire to help you tell whether IG fees are beneficial for you. Continue reading about IG fees and charges to see if this is the right broker for you, or if a similar broker like eToro or XTB might suit you better.
Here's a high-level overview of IG's fees
|Assets||Fee level||Fee terms|
|US stock fee||-||Real stocks available only in a few countries, like UK, Ireland, or Australia. US stock fees: $0.02 per share with $15 min|
|EURUSD fee||High||The fees are built into the spread, 0.6 pips is the average spread cost during peak trading hours.|
|US mutual fund fees||-||Not available|
|Inactivity fee||Low||$12 per month after 2 years of inactivity|
IG fees explained
Online brokerages in general charge much lower brokerage fees than traditional brokerages do - this is largely because online brokerages' businesses can be much better scaled: from a purely technical standpoint, it doesn't make that much of a difference for them if they have 100 or 5,000 clients.
This is not to say, however, that they don't charge any fees at all. They make money by charging you various rates for various actions or events. Usually you need to keep an eye on the following three types of fees:
- Trading fees - these are brokerage fees that you pay when you actually carry out a trade, like buying an Apple share or an ETF. What you pay is either a commission, a spread or a financing rate. Some brokers apply all of these.
- A commission is either fixed or based on the traded volume.
- A spread is the difference between the buy price and the sell price.
- A financing rate or overnight rate is charged when you hold your leveraged positions for more than one day.
- Non-trading fees. These are usually related to some operations you carry out in your account, such as depositing money, withdrawing money, or not trading for an extended period.
We compare IG fees with its closest competitors, eToro and XTB.
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IG trading fees
IG's trading fees are mixed, which means that some asset classes come with high trading fees - be sure to check these carefully.
Let's break down trading fees according to the different asset classes available at IG.
IG's trading fees are average.
Stock fees and ETF fees
IG has stock trading fees.
IG's forex fees are high.
|EURUSD benchmark fee||$16.5||$8.7||$8.5|
|EURGBP benchmark fee||$16.5||$12.9||$8.3|
IG's options fees are low.
|US stock options||-||-||-|
|US stock index options||$10.0||-||-|
|UK stock index options||$13.0||-||-|
|German stock index options||$12.0||-||-|
IG has average CFD trading fees.
IG non-trading fees
Some of IG's non-trading fees are average.
Non-trading fees include various brokerage fees and charges at IG that are not related to buying or selling assets. This can be a withdrawal fee, deposit fee, inactivity fee or account fee.
IG deposit fee
Usually, brokers don't charge anything for deposits, and IG is no different.
IG withdrawal fee
IG generally doesn't charge a withdrawal fee.
|Withdrawal fee for bank transfer||$0||$5||$0|
IG inactivity fee
IG does apply an inactivity fee and it is $12 per month after 2 years of inactivity. Keep this in mind to avoid getting charged after a longer idle period. The fact that IG charges an inactivity fee makes it less ideal for you if you are a buy-and-hold investor.
The inactivity fee charged by IG is low.
|Inactivity fee||$12 per month after 2 years of inactivity||$10 per month after one year inactivity||€10 per month after 1 year of trading inactivity and if no deposit was made in the last 90 days|