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4.6
Best mobile trading platform
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73.5% of retail CFD accounts lose money

Summary

Recommended for forex traders who value a user-friendly platform and great research tools

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73.5% of retail CFD accounts lose money

Oanda is an American forex broker founded in 1996.

It is considered safe because it has a long track record, discloses its financials, and is regulated by top-tier authorities, such as the US Retail Foreign Exchange Dealer (RFED) and the UK's Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

Disclaimer: CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 73.5% 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.

Best mobile trading platform

We selected Oanda as Best mobile trading platform for 2020, based on an in-depth analysis of 57 online brokers that included testing their live accounts.

Best broker for API trading

We selected Oanda as Best broker for API trading for 2020, based on an in-depth analysis of 57 online brokers that included testing their live accounts.

Overall Rating
4.6
Fees
4.0
Account opening
4.0
Deposit and withdrawal
4.0
Trading platform
5.0
Markets and products
2.0
Research
5.0
Customer service
3.0
Education
4.0

Oanda pros and cons

With just a few exceptions, Oanda's fees are low. It offers a great and easy-to-use web trading platform, and a quick and user-friendly account opening process with no minimum deposit. Its research tools are powerful, with numerous technical indicators and a great API offer.

On the downside, Oanda has a limited product portfolio, as you can trade with forex and CFDs only. The bank withdrawal fee is high, while customer support could be improved as it is slow and not available 24/7.

Pros Cons
Generally low fees Only FX and some CFDs
Easy-to-use web trading platform Poor customer service
Easy and digital account opening High bank withdrawal fee
Oanda main features and highlights
🗺️ Country of regulation USA, UK, Australia, Singapore, Canada, Japan
💰 Trading fees class Low
💰 Inactivity fee charged Yes
💰 Withdrawal fee amount $0
💰 Minimum deposit $0
🕖 Time to open an account 1-3 days
💳 Deposit with credit card Available
👛 Depositing with electronic wallet Available
💱 Number of base currencies supported 9
🎮 Demo account provided Yes
🛍️ Products offered Forex, CFD
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73.5% of retail CFD accounts lose money
Gergely Korpos

Gergely Korpos

Co-founder, CPO

Author of this review

Gergely is the co-founder and CPO of Brokerchooser. His aim is to make personal investing crystal clear for everybody. Gergely has 10 years of experience in the financial markets. He concluded thousands of trades as a commodity trader and equity portfolio manager.

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

Oanda review
Fees

4.0
Oanda charges low CFD and low forex fees. Non-trading fees are low, though the withdrawal fee is quite high for bank transfers.
Pros Cons
Low trading fees High withdrawal fee for bank transfers
Low forex fees
No withdrawal fee
No withdrawal fee in most cases
Oanda fees snapshot
Assets Fee level Fee terms
EURUSD Low The fees are built into spread, 1.2 pips is the average spread cost.
GBPUSD Low The fees are built into spread, 1.6 pips is the average spread cost.
S&P 500 CFD Low All costs are built into the spread: 0.6 is the average spread cost.
Inactivity fee Low $10 per month after 2 years of inactivity

How we ranked fees

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

To get things rolling, let's go over some lingo 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 Oanda for each asset class. For example, in the case of forex and stock index trading, spreads, commissions and financing rates are the most important fees.

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

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

Oanda trading fees

Oanda trading fees are generally low.

We know it's hard to compare trading fees for forex brokers. So what we did was we compared brokers by calculating all the fees of a typical trade for selected products.

We picked popular instruments within each asset class usually offered by 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 it. For 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 include spreads, commissions and financing costs for all brokers. Let's see the verdict for Oanda fees.

Forex fees

Oanda forex fees are low. The EURUSD fee is a bit higher than the average. 

Oanda forex benchmark fees of a $20,000 30:1 long position held for one week
  Oanda Pepperstone FXCM
EURUSD benchmark fee $15.9 $14.9 $16.7
GBPUSD benchmark fee $11.9 $12.5 $13.0
AUDUSD benchmark fee $8.3 $11.9 $126.5
EURCHF benchmark fee $7.1 $3.7 $4.6
EURGBP benchmark fee $10.7 $10.6 $9.6

CFD fees

Oanda has generally low CFD trading fees. Compared to Pepperstone and FXCM, Oanda's fees are lower.

Oanda CFD fees for a $2,000 long position held for one week
  Oanda Pepperstone FXCM
S&P 500 CFD benchmark fee $1.0 $1.7 $2.2
Europe 50 CFD benchmark fee $0.9 $1.6 $1.6

Non-trading fees

Oanda has average non-trading fees. There is no deposit fee. The withdrawal fee is low for credit/debit cards and PayPal, but the bank withdrawal fee is high. Oanda charges a reasonable $10 per month after 2 years of inactivity.

Oanda non-trading fees
  Oanda Pepperstone FXCM
Account fee No No No
Inactivity fee Yes No Yes
Deposit fee $0 $0 $0
Withdrawal fee $0 $0 $0

Oanda review
Account opening

4.0
Oanda's account opening is straightforward, with no required minimum balance.
Pros Cons
Fully digital Issues with ID verification can slow account opening
No minimum deposit
Low minimum deposit

Can you open an account?

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73.5% of retail CFD accounts lose money

What is the minimum deposit at Oanda?

There is no minimum deposit at Oanda.

Account types

There is only one type of trading account at Oanda (in addition to a demo account). However, you can open up to 19 sub-accounts. These are great if you want to have different base currencies under one account. E.g. you can have a USD account with EUR and GBP subaccounts.

How to open your account

 

Oanda review - Account opening

From start to finish, you can calculate with less than 10 minutes. Account approval, though, can take multiple days, as we were asked to send some of our verification documents in email; but it's still quick if you respond to their emails in time.

It takes four steps to complete Oanda account opening:

  1. Contact details: set your username and password.
  2. Personal information: submit basic personal information, like your employment status or income estimate.
  3. Appropriateness test: fill out a competence test with questions like "What are margins?"
  4. Verify your identity: upload a copy of your ID/passport to verify your identity, and a bank statement / utility bill to verify your residency.

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Oanda review
Deposit and withdrawal

4.0
There is no deposit fee and you can conveniently use your debit card for deposit. While withdrawal is free in most cases, it is expensive for bank transfers, and it involves a fee if you withdraw to your card more than once a month.
Pros Cons
Credit/Debit card available High withdrawal fee for bank transfers
No deposit fee
Withdrawal is free for PayPal and for the first debit card transaction each month

Account base currencies

At Oanda, you can choose from 9 base currencies:

EUR USD GBP
AUD CAD CHF
HKD JPY SGD
Base currencies at Oanda vs similar brokers
  Oanda Pepperstone FXCM
Number of base currencies 9 10 3

Why does this matter? For two reasons. If you fund your trading account in the same currency as your bank account or you trade assets in the same currency as your trading 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. Revolut or Transferwise both 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.

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Deposit fees and options

Oanda charges no deposit fees for bank transfers and credit cards, but depositing via PayPal costs £0.35 per transaction plus 1.4% of the transferred amount.

Oanda deposit options
  Oanda Pepperstone FXCM
Bank transfer Yes Yes Yes
Credit/Debit card Yes Yes Yes
Electronic wallets Yes Yes Yes

Deposit options vary depending on your residency and your account currency. We listed the main options below.

Deposit options in the regions
Option Europe United States Canada Asia-Pacific Australia
Bank transfer          
Credit card          
Debit card          
PayPal          

You can only deposit money from accounts that are in your name. A bank transfer can take several business days, while payment with a credit/debit card is instant. For more information, visit Oanda's website.

Oanda review - Deposit and withdrawal - Deposit

Oanda withdrawal fees and options

Oanda charges no withdrawal fees for the first transfer each month for debit cards, while PayPal is free for EUR, USD, and GBP transactions. On the other hand, bank transfers cost a minimum of $20 (both domestic and international), and subsequent debit card withdrawals during the month cost $15 each. 

Oanda withdrawal fees and options
  Oanda Pepperstone FXCM
Bank Transfer Yes Yes Yes
Credit/Debit card Yes Yes Yes
Electronic wallets Yes Yes Yes
Withdrawal fee $0 $0 $0

Withdrawal options and fees vary depending on your residency. The main withdrawal options are the same as those for deposits.

You can only withdraw money to accounts in your name. How long does it take to withdraw money from Oanda? At Oanda's website, you will see various time estimates for different methods. In our tests it took only one business day using a debit card.

Compare to other brokers

Oanda review
Web trading platform

5.0
Oanda's web trading platform is user-friendly and safe with good customizability. On the downside, you can't set price alerts.
Pros Cons
User-friendly No price alerts
Clear fee report
Two-step (safer) login
Oanda platforms to choose from
Trading platform Score Available
Web 5 / 5 stars Yes
Mobile 5 / 5 stars Yes
Desktop 4 / 5 stars Yes

At Oanda you can choose from two trading platforms: Oanda's own platform or MetaTrader 4. In this review, we tested Oanda's platform.

The web trading platform is available in several languages: 

Chinese English French German Italian
Japanese Portuguese Russian Spanish Japanese

Look and feel

Oanda's own trading platform is user-friendly and well-designed. It is also customizable, allowing you to change the tabs' position and size.

Oanda review - Web trading platform

Login and security

Oanda provides a two-step login, which is safer than using only a username and password. For two-step login to work, you'll have to install the Google Authenticator app, which is a compromise that's easy to live with for the sake of security.

Search functions

The platform's search function is good, in that you can easily find the assets you are looking for. Assuming you found the search function in the first place - its location is not very intuitive, as the search menu can be found under the ‘Rates’ tab.

Placing orders

You can use the following order types:

  • Market
  • Limit
  • Take profit
  • Stop loss
  • Trailing stop

Only Good till Date (GTD) order time limit is available. To get a better understanding of these terms, read this overview of order types.

Oanda review - Web trading platform - Order panel

Alerts and notifications

You cannot set price alerts and notifications on the web trading platform, although this function would be useful and it is available at several other brokers.

Portfolio and fee reports

Oanda has clear portfolio and fee reports. You can find your summary of spread costs, commissions and profit under the ‘Activity’ tab.

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73.5% of retail CFD accounts lose money

Oanda review
Mobile trading platform

5.0
Oanda's mobile platform is similar to the web trading platform in functionality, and as a plus, you can also set alerts.
Pros Cons
User-friendly No Touch/Face ID login
Two-step (safer) login
Good search function

Oanda's mobile trading platform is available on both iOS and Android. We tested it on Android in English, but it's also available in the following languages:

Arabic Chinese German
English Japanese Russian

Look and feel

The Oanda mobile trading platform is user-friendly. The chart tab is great, you can customize it well. This is not something you commonly find at other brokers.

Oanda review - Mobile trading platform

Login and security

Oanda provides a two-step login, which is definitely safe, but you can't use biometric authentication (i.e. fingerprint or face recognition on your phone), which would make the process even more convenient.

Alerts and notifications

Unlike on the web trading platform, it's possible to set alerts and notifications on the Oanda mobile platform.

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73.5% of retail CFD accounts lose money

Oanda review
Desktop trading platform

4.0
Oanda's desktop platform mimics the web platform in terms of functionality, but its design could be improved.
Pros Cons
Clear fee report No price alerts
Good customizability (for charts, workspace)
Good variety of order types

Oanda desktop platform is similar to the web trading platform in terms of login, order types, setting alerts, and portfolio reports. On the other hand, the design is a bit outdated.Oanda review - Desktop trading platform

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73.5% of retail CFD accounts lose money

Oanda review
Markets and products

2.0
At Oanda you can trade only forex and CFDs. It offers fewer forex pairs but more CFDs than its closest competitors.

Disclaimer: CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 73.5% 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.

Oanda has a wide selection of CFD products (including stock index, bond, and commodity CFDs), but the number of available currency pairs is average at best.

Oanda product selection
  Oanda Pepperstone FXCM
Currency pairs (#) 71 80 39
Stock index CFDs (#) 16 14 14
Commodity CFDs (#) 31 14 10
Bond CFDs (#) 6 - -

We really liked the fact that you can set the leverage manually. At some other brokers, including Pepperstone and FXCM, this feature is not available. It is located under the 'Deposit and Withdrawal' tab, which is not very intuitive though.

Changing the leverage is a very useful feature when you want to lower the risk of your trade. For example, instead of trading with 5:1 leverage, only trade with 2:1 leverage in the case of stock CFDs. Be careful with forex and CFD trading, as the preset leverage levels may be high.

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Oanda review
Research

5.0
Oanda has a wide range of research tools, such as news, technical analysis and API.
Pros Cons
Good interactive chart Research tools are poorly organized
Quality news flow
User-friendly
Great API

Oanda has a lot of research tools, but they are scattered across five different pages. For the sake of clarity, here they are in one place:

  • MarketPulse: analyses written by Oanda's own research team. It also includes an economic calendar.
  • News: MarketPulse articles plus a feed by Dow Jones Newswires, a prominent third-party information provider
  • Economic analysis: analyses of important economic events. However, there is an overlap with MarketPulse as many of these articles can be found there as well.
  • Oanda Labs: tools developed by Oanda's engineers. These tools are usually based on technical analysis, e.g. candlestick pattern analysis. 
  • Technical analysis: many technical analysis tools powered by Autochartist
  • Algo Lab: a powerful tool for API trading

Research tools are available in multiple languages.

Fundamental data

Oanda provides no fundamental data, mostly because it concentrates on forex.

Charting

Oanda has great charting tools. The charts are very responsive, easy to edit, and you can use more than 70 technical indicators.

Oanda review - Research - Charting

News feed

News is available on the ‘News’, ‘Market Pulse’, and ‘Economic Analysis’ pages. You can reach these pages from the trading platforms.

Oanda review - Research - News feed

We think ‘MarketPulse‘ is your best bet to be in the know. It offers well-written news and analysis with visual elements like charts or videos. You can also find a great economic calendar. These elements are totally missing from the ‘News‘ page, while the ‘Economic analysis‘ page is not up to date.

Oanda review - Research - Market pulse

Other research tools

There are so many other research tools that even a separate review wouldn't do them justice. Therefore, we picked only the hottest ones.

Oanda has great API options. You can make/use your own APIs in a great and very user-friendly environment. Algo Lab allows you to code and deploy your own automated trading strategies right from your web browser. Programming languages supported by Algo Lab are C#, Python, and F#.

Oanda review - Research - Algo labThere is also a currency heat map, which is a great visual chart showing FX pair changes in percentages. Last but not least, you can use the Forex Order Book tool, which is a 24-hour summary of open orders and positions held by Oanda's clients.

Compare research pros and cons

Oanda review
Customer service

3.0
You can reach Oanda's customer service through several channels, but its quality and availability could be improved.
Pros Cons
Phone support No 24/7 support
Live chat Speed could be improved

It is a big plus that you can contact Oanda in several ways:

  • live chat (with an Oanda rep)
  • chatbot (virtual assistant)
  • phone
  • email

Oanda's customer service is available 24 hours a day, but live chat and phone support is available only between Sunday and Friday. Although not 24/7, this is still good availability, but we were not satisfied with the quality:

  • On live chat, we got relevant answers, but the response time can be long. On several occasions, we had to wait around 15 minutes before an agent was connected. Furthermore, they wrap up live chat very quickly if you don't respond right away. A good feature though is that you can export message texts.
  • The chatbot is a really innovative solution in theory, but it cannot answer even basic questions, like what the average spreads are on EURUSD.
  • On the phone, both relevance and response times could be improved. Once we waited around 8 minutes, and then couldn't get a fully satisfactory answer to our question (we wanted to get a good overview of fees).
  • Email support gave relevant answers, but their response was slow (taking 3 to 7 days).

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Oanda review
Education

4.0
Oanda offers live and pre-recorded webinars ranging from the basics to expert trading, but this wide selection of educational materials is not structured well.
Pros Cons
Demo account Materials are not well-organized
Trading platform tutorial
Educational videos

It is great that you can use many tools for education:

  • Demo account
  • Educational videos
  • Platform tutorial videos
  • Webinars
  • Texts

We enjoyed the quality of the videos, they were well produced. On the other hand, we felt they should be better organized; for example, a playlist for trading platform basics would be nice.

There are high-quality webinars available to everyone, covering basic trading topics like risk management. Premium webinars are only accessible to Oanda customers. Educational materials are also available for reading, covering many of the same topics. On the negative side, educational tools could be more structured. As with research tools, we felt lost as educational tools were scattered all over the platform.

Oanda review - Research - education

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73.5% of retail CFD accounts lose money

Oanda review
Safety

Oanda is regulated by top-tier authorities, but it doesn't have a banking license and is not traded on a stock exchange.
Pros Cons
Majority of clients belong to a top-tier financial authority Does not hold a banking license
Negative balance protection Not listed on stock exchange
Financial information is publicly available

Is Oanda regulated?

Yes, it is regulated by several financial authorities, including top-tier regulators like the UK's Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). You can find a list of regulators overseeing Oanda's respective legal entities here.

Is Oanda safe?

To be certain, 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

Oanda has six legal entities. This is important for you because the investor protection amount and the regulator differs from entity to entity.

Not all investments are protected by SIPC. In general, SIPC covers notes, stocks, bonds, mutual funds and other investment company shares, and other registered securities. It does not cover instruments such as unregistered investment contracts, unregistered limited partnerships, fixed annuity contracts, currency, and interests in gold, silver, or other commodity futures contracts or commodity options.

Legal entities
Client country Investor protection amount Regulator Legal entity
Europe £85,000 (FSCS) Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) OANDA Europe Limited 
USA No protection Commodity Trading Futures Commission and National Futures Association OANDA Corporation
Canada $1,000,000 (CIPF) Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) OANDA (Canada) Corporation ULC
Australia No protection Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) OANDA Australia Pty Ltd
Asia (except Japan) No protection Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) OANDA Asia Pacific Pte Ltd
Japan No protection Financial Services Agency (FAS) OANDA Japan Inc

Oanda provides negative balance protection for forex spot and CFD trading, but only for retail clients from the European Union. Professional and non-EU clients are not covered with any negative balance protection.

Background

Oanda is based in the USA and was founded in 1996. The longer track record a broker has, the more proof we have that it has successfully weathered previous financial crises.

It provides annual financial statements and is regulated by a top-tier regulator. All of these are great markers of Oanda's safety.

Find your safe broker

Oanda review
Bottom line

Oanda is a good forex broker: its fees are great, and it has a good web trading platform where you will quickly feel comfortable. It provides a user-friendly and fully digital account opening process, as well as powerful research tools, especially API.

On the other hand, Oanda has a limited product portfolio, as only forex and CFDs are available. Customer support is slow, and bank withdrawal fees can be high.

Feel free to try Oanda: it is regulated by top-tier regulators, there is no minimum deposit, and the inactivity fee only kicks in after two years.

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