XTB Review 2019

Best CFD broker
· 4.5 5 stars · Dec 2018
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XTB is primarily a forex and CFD broker and in some countries, you can also trade with real stocks. XTB is a global broker, it has more than ten offices worldwide. In Europe, it serves clients by a UK or a Polish entity. We tested the UK entity, but will provide info on all entities.

XTB is listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange. A listed company is more transparent. It discloses its financials regularly. XTB is authorized and regulated by different regulators, including top-tier regulator, the FCA.

XTB is considered safe because it is listed on a stock exchange, discloses its financials, and is regulated by a top-tier regulator.

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. In the UK, 79%, while in the rest of Europe 82% 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 CFD broker

Recommended for forex and CFD traders looking for quick deposit and withdrawal, and advanced research tools.

Pros
  • Fast deposit and withdrawal
  • Fast and user-friendly account opening
  • Good research tools
Cons
  • Limited product portfolio, mostly CFD and FX
  • Sales team can be pushy
  • Missing 24/7 customer support

As a plus

XTB offers a fast deposit and withdrawal, and multiple options to deposit, including credit/debit cards. The account opening is also fast and user-friendly, will be ready within a day. XTB has good research tools, including news flow, market sentiment, and an economic calendar.

On the flip side

XTB has limited product portfolio, provides mostly CFD and FX, and some stocks and ETFs. Account opening is is quick, but the sales team can be very pushy. 24/7 customer support is also missing.

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XTB review
Fees 4 stars

XTB has average trading fees and low non-trading fees.

Pros
  • Low fees
  • No inactivity fee
  • Low financing rate
  • No withdrawal fee
Cons
None

XTB Fees - a snapshot
Assets Fee level Fee terms
US stock fee Average 0.08%, min $8
EURUSD fee Low €3.5 /£4 /$4 per transaction side
US tech fund fee - -
Inactivity fee Low No inactivity fee

To get things rolling, let's go over some broker fee lingo. You need to keep an eye on trading fees and non-trading fees.

We compare XTB fees with its peers, IG and eToro.

Let's start with the trading fees.

Trading fees

XTB has generally low trading fees.

How you pay fees is different by account types. At standard account, you pay only spreads, while at PRO accounts you will pay commissions above the market spreads, i.e. the interbank spreads. We reviewed now the PRO account, the one with commissions. 

It is super hard to compare trading fees for CFD brokers. What we did at Brokerchooser? Instead of quoting long fee tables, we compare brokers by calculating all fees of a typical trade for three assets.  

For the assets we choose cleverly and arbitrarily:

  • Apple, a large US stock
  • Vodafone, a large European stock
  • EURUSD, a popular currency pair

Here is the verdict. XTB has average trading fees for stock and low tarding fees for forex:

XTB CFD and forex fees benchmarked
 
Apple benchmark fee 18.10 34.88 1.64
Vodafone benchmark fee 24.58 30.69 2.57
EURUSD benchmark fee 17.15 USD 12.33 USD 21.08 USD

The typical trade means buying a position, holding for one week, and selling it. For the volume, we chose a $2,000 position for the stocks and $20,000 for the EURUSD.

This super catch-all benchmark includes spreads, commissions and financing costs for all brokers.

For your convenience, we also let you know the commission calculation for the PRO account. It is quite simple.

  • For forex, stock index, commodity, and crypto CFDs, you are charged with a $4/€3.5/£2.5 commission per one lot (100,000 amount in the relevant currency).
  • For stock and ETF CFDs, XTB, the commission is 0.08% or minimum $8/€8/£8.

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Financing rates

If you prefer to hold your positions long, financing costs can be significant. XTB's financing rates are low, only IG can compete with it:

XTB yearly financing rates
 
Apple financing rate 5.00% 5.00% 7.00%
Vodafone financing rate 3.00% 3.00% 7.00%
EURUSD financing rate 0.04 % 0.03 % 0.04 %

Non-trading fees

XTB's non-trading fees are low as well. There are no inactivity fees, and the withdrawal is free above $100.

Terms can be different among countries. For example, at the UK entity, there is no account fee, while for the Polish clients there is.

XTB non-trading fees
 
Account fee
Inactivity fee
Withdrawal fee It is only applied if you transfer below an amount threshold No $ 25

Withdrawal and deposit fees depend on the currency, the amount, and the type, e.g. wire, card, etc. Check the funding and withdrawal section for further information. XTB's fee for electronic wallets is quite high and there is a fee if you withdraw money below $100. 

XTB review
Account opening 5 stars

XTB account opening is hassle-free and straightforward. Your account is ready for trading on the same day. However, the sales team is very pushy.

Pros
  • Fast account opening
  • Account opening fully digital
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • Sales team pushy

Can you open an account?

XTB accepts customers from all over Europe, and also from most countries around the world. There are a few notable exceptions. You cannot open an account if you are from:

  • USA 
  • Canada
  • India
  • Pakistan
  • Singapore
  • Japan
  • South-Korea 
  • North-Korea
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Afghanistan
  • Libya
  • Iran
  • Iraq
  • Syria

Minimum deposit

The required minimum differs from country to country. For example in Poland, there is no minimum deposit, while in Spain there is a required minimum of €1,000. Ask the customer service about the minimum balance of your country before you open your account. For UK citizens there is a required minimum account balance of $250/€250/£250. 

Account Types

There are two account types, the 'standard' and the 'pro'. They differ only in the fees:

  • standard account: spreads, and there is no commission for stock indices, forex, and commodities
  • pro account: tighter spreads and  there is a commission for stock indices, forex, and commodities

We tested the pro account. XTB’s website also lists a ‘basic’ account but that’s a legacy account type, you cannot open it anymore.

How to open your account

XTB account opening is fully digital, fast, and straightforward. You can fill out the forms and submit all the documents within 30 minutes. Be prepared for a pushy sales team until your account is opened. You will be reached many times by phone and e-mail.

You can select many languages beyond the English: Polish, Czech, German, Spanish, French, Hungarian, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Slovenian, Turkish, Chinese, Japanese. 

To start, you give your personal information, choose xStation or MetaTrader, and standard or pro account. You pick your base currency and the platform language.

XTB review - Account opening - Account types

You need to answer a couple of questions about your trading experience. This might seem strange but this is a standard process with CFD brokers as you potentially can lose more money than you have invested.

XTB review - Account opening

At the end of the account opening process, you have to your verify identity. The majority of the European clients can be identified by Experian, a software. So, you don't have to upload anything and it will ready very fast. This was not available for us, in Hungary. We had to submit a picture or scanned copy of our photo ID or passport, and a proof of residence.

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XTB review
Deposit and withdrawal 5 stars

XTB's deposit and withdrawal are cost-friendly, fast, and can be done in several forms. Fees for electronic wallet deposits are quite high.

Pros
  • Credit/Debit card deposit and withdrawal available
  • Speedy funding and withdrawal -within 3 days
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • High fees for electronic wallets deposit

Account base currencies

At XTB, you will find more base currencies, not only USD like at eToro. The number and the types of them can differ from country to country and there is no official information about this on XTB's website. We opened an account at the UK legal entity and could choose from four base currencies: USD, EUR, GBP, and HUF. 

Why does the account base currency matter? Because if you fund your account in the same currency as your bank account, currency conversion fees won't be charged. 

Deposit fee and options

XTB deposit fees are free, except from electronic wallets which is quite high, 2% of the amount. 

There are a lot of transfer options.

  • Bank transfer
  • Credit/Debit card
  • Paypal
  • Skrill
  • Bluecahs*
  • PayU*

*available only at the Polish entity accounts.

XTB deposit options
 
Bank Transfer
Credit/Debit card
Electronic Wallets

The bank transfer can take up to three business days, while transfers from credit and debit cards and electronic wallets arrive instantly. You can only deposit money from sources which are on your name.

XTB review - Deposit and withdrawal - Deposit

Withdrawal fee and options

XTB withdrawal fees are free if you withdraw above $100. 

The only way to withdraw is bank transfer. The withdrawal time is up to 2 working days. If you do the withdrawal before 1 pm, it will arrive on the same day, otherwise, withdrawal arrives on the next working day. We tested it, for us it arrived on the same day.

 XTB review - Deposit and withdrawal - Withdrawal

Money withdrawal is free above a ~$100. 

XTB withdrawal fees, above the threshold it is free
Thresholds for small withdrawals Withdrawal fee
< $100 $20
< €80 €16
< £60 £12
< HUF 12,000 HUF 3,000

Compare to other brokers

XTB review
Web trading platform 4 stars

XTB's xStation 5 platform is user-friendly, can be customized, and a have good search function. On the flip side, we missed the two-step login, the leverage setting option, and the more sophisticated order types.

Pros
  • Good search function
  • Good customizability (for chart, for workspace)
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • No two-step (safe) login
  • Limited order types

XTB Platforms to Choose From
Trading platform Score Available
Web 4 / 5 stars Yes
Mobile 4 / 5 stars Yes
Desktop 4 / 5 stars Yes

XTB'osn platform is xStation 5 and you can use Metatrader 4, a third-party tool. In our XTB review, we tested the xStation 5.

The platform comes in many languages: English, Polish, Czech, German, Spanish, French, Hungarian, Italian, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Slovenian, Turkish, Chinese, Japanese. 

Look and feel

XTB’s xStation 5 platform might come off as intimidating as it looks like it is for hardcore professionals. As you start to use it, you will find it is really well put together and you will be able to use it with ease, even if you are a first time user.

We liked how customizable the trading platform is but we missed the option to save your layout for later use.

XTB review - Web trading platform

Illustrative picture

Login and security

You can log in very easily with your email and password. This is a one-step login, but we missed an option for a two-step login, i.e. an SMS code to type in to make sure it’s really you.

Search functions

The search function is good. There are two ways you can search for an asset under ‘Market Watch':

  • you type the name of the product 
  • asset type category browsing. E.g. if you want to trade with a US stock CFD, you just click on the stock type and select the US.

XTB review - Web trading platform - Search

Illustrative picture

Placing orders

XTB's order management is mid-range:

  • Market and limit orders. Dubbed as instant and pending orders respectively. 
  • Stop-loss and take profit
  • Trailing stop 

You can find a good explanation of the order types in our guidebook.

A useful feature is the trader calculator which helps you to calculate the margin, the commission, and other important parameters. 

XTB review - Web trading platform - Order panel

Illustrative picture

Alerts and Notifications

We also liked the alert and notification function. You can set up email, SMS and push notifications for important events like margin calls, deposits and withdrawals, your closed/open positions and other features.

XTB review - Web trading platform - Notifications

Illustrative picture

Portfolio and Fee reports

You can easily see your performances and fees on the 'history' tab, you can see the profit/loss of your positions. You can get daily e-mail reports too.

XTB review - Web trading platform - Fee reports

Illustrative picture

Visit web platform page

XTB review
Mobile trading platform 4 stars

The mobile platform has a good search function with an ok design. On the other hand, there is no two-step authentication and the order types are limited.

Pros
  • Good search function
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • No two-step (safe) login
  • Limited order types

xStation 5 and Metatrader 4 both have mobiles platforms on iOS and Android. You can also use an Apple watch, but we stuck to a conventional Android smartphone and tested XTB's xStation 5. 

Look and feel

The mobile trading app is less convincing compared to the web trading platform. It is functional and easy to use, just not gorgeous. 

XTB review - Mobile trading platform

Illustrative picture

Login and Security

You can set a PIN code for added security. This is the kind of extra security we mentioned we missed on the web platform.

Search functions

Search function is good. It is the same as the web platform, but you will see only the more important products, and you can't filter for countries.

XTB review - Mobile trading platform - Search

Illustrative picture

Placing Orders

Placing order is more or less the same as on the web trading platform, except you do not have the trailing stop order type.

XTB review - Mobile trading platform - Order panel

Illustrative picture

 

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XTB review
Desktop trading platform 4 stars

XTB's xStation 5 platform has a desktop version as well. In functionality and design, it's the same as the web trading platform.

Pros
  • Good search function
  • Good customizability (for chart, for workspace)
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • No two-step (safe) login
  • Limited order types

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XTB review
Markets and products 2 stars

UK, Hungarians and non-Europeans can trade only with CFDs and forex. All other Europeans can also trade with real shares and ETFs.

XTB is primarily a CFD and forex broker. If you are from Europe, excluding the UK and Hungary, you can also trade stocks.

To learn more on CFDs, read our CFD trading tips.

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. In the UK, 79%, while in the rest of Europe 82% 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.

At XTB, you can trade with many products on a lot of markets. It is not as many as at IG, but it is competitive, better than at eToro. XTB has the most amount of cryptocurrencies. 

CFD products and markets
 
Currency pairs (#) 48 94 47
Stock index CFDs (#) 34 68 12
Stock CFDs (#) 1,561 10,500 957
ETF CFDs (#) 87 1,895 53
Commodity CFDs (#) 21 47 7
Cryptos (#) 5 6 7

When trading CFDs and FX leverage, it is important to have control of your leverage. At XTB, unfortunately, you cannot set the leverage level. 

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Stock and ETF

You can trade stocks and ETFs at XTB if you are from Europe, except the UK and Hungary.

XTB can give you access to a fair amount of stock markets. The ETFs you trade with is not many.

Stocks and ETFs
 
Stock markets (#) 17 25 12
ETFs (#) 76 1,701 -

XTB review
Research 4 stars

XTB's research tools are user-friendly. There are a lot of tools to select instruments to trade, the news flow has some reocommendations. Detailed fundamental data is missing.

Pros
  • Good interactive chart
  • Good set of analytical tools
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • No fundamental data available

XTB's research tools are great. XTB puts its research they can be accessed straight away.

The language of the research is a bit of a mix. Flash news comes in English. For daily morning news and some reports will be done in your language. We could not set the language. Even though we opened the account at the UK entity, set the platform language to English, we still got news commentary in our language. 

Recommendations

There are a few recommendations at the news flow. These are usually quoted recommendations of big institutions, like Morgan Stanley or Reuters. These are usually for the short-term and technical.

They are in the news flow and can be hard to access recommendation when you want to see past recommendations for a specific asset. E.g. there are EURUSD recommendations in the news flow. But, when you search for EURUSD analysis, these recommendations cannot be accessed.

There is also a daily Youtube report, the narrator gives his opinion on the assets he follows.

Fundamental data

There is very limited fundamental data. There are a few facts, like P/E ratio or debt to equity ratio, but you cannot get access to the financial statements or operational metrics.

Charting

The charting tool is good. You can add ~25 indicators which is mid-range, compared to other brokers. You cannot save the chart, but it is easy to share.

XTB review - Research - Charting

Illustrative picture

News feed

The news is written by XTB's team, voted the Best EMEA FX Forecaster by Bloomberg in 2018 Q2 and Q3. The news is a mix of recommendations, data releases from the economic calendar and trader's talks, brief messages about the actual happenings on the market.

By using the economic calendar, you can see the forthcoming events. When you select an event, you can read a short summary about it and check the historical performance of the related assets. For example, you can check the price change of the Norwegian Krone at the events of the Norwegian economic data releases.

XTB review - Research - Economic calendar

Illustrative picture

Other research tools you will enjoy

The market sentiment function shows the percentage of XTB clients' long and short positions. Another tool, the "heatmap" visualize winners and losers.

XTB review - Research - Market sentiment

Illustrative picture

The stock screener uses 14 factors to filter stocks you want to trade with, including market capitalization, P/E, BETA, or debt-to-equity ratio. You can also filter for the industry and the countries.

XTB review - Research - stock screener

Illustrative picture

Another useful tool is the ETF scanner. It is very similar to the stock screener, there are 10 filters including cumulative return or the assets' total value. When we tested this tool, only three ETFs were visible and the filters we tried to change were not always working.

More research info

XTB review
Customer service 5 stars

XTB's phone and live chat support are reliable and fast. On the flip side, the e-mail support is slow and the customer service is available only on the workdays.

Pros
  • Phone support available
  • Live chat available
  • Relevant answers
Cons
  • Slow support for e-mail
  • 24/5 availability

You can reach XTB's customer service via phone, e-mail, and in some cases, live chat. The customer service is available 24/5. Only some competitors, like IG, provide a 24/7 customer service.

You can reach the customer service in many languages, including the minor ones, like Hungarian or Romanian.

We had a great experience when we tested XTB's phone support. They answered the phone instantly, and we got the relevant answers.

Live chat exists, especially for Europeans outside of the UK.

For the UK, there is a chat but you need to get around to access it. As a default, you can only leave a message, and they will reply via email.

XTB review - Customer service - email

But, when you transfer money on the trading platform, there is a chat which you can use for your questions too.

We tested it in multiple languages in more countries. They were fast and we got the right answers.

 

XTB review - Customer service - Live chat

XTB's e-mail support is okayish. You get answers in your language. The quality of the answer can depend on the local team. Previously the email answers were slow. In our 2019  test, we got replies quickly, which is a nice improvement. However, some answers were not 100% accurate. For example, we asked what the fees are for EURUSD. The answer: it is only the spread. Brokers with the best customer service do not forget to point out that you will also pay overnight fees when you hold the asset for more than a day.

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XTB review
Education 5 stars

XTB has a well organized and easy-to-understand education section. You will find educational tools from texts to trading platform videos.

Pros
  • Trading platform tutorial videos
  • Educational videos
  • Demo account
Cons
None

XTB education materials are broad and good:

  • Demo account
  • Educational videos
  • Platform tutorial video
  • Webinars
  • Quizzes

We liked the structure of educational texts as they can be categorized by the trading experience and subjects. They were good quality, understandable and logically structured. At the end of the lessons, you can fill out quizzes. This is great, and not common at other brokers. 

XTB review - Customer service - Education

In addition, you can watch educational and trading platform videos integrated into the texts. 

We could not test the webinars as they were not available at the time of the review.

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XTB review
Safety

XTB is regulated by more than 10 authorities globally, including the top-tier FCA. It is listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange and discloses its financials regularly.

Pros
  • Regulated by top tier financial authority
  • Listed on stock exchange
  • Well disclosed financial information
Cons
None

XTB is a global broker established in 2002 serving clients globally and has offices in more than 10 countries. Is XTB safe? To be certain, it is best to check two things: how you are protected if something goes south and what the background of the broker is.

How you are protected

XTB in Europe operates through two major legal entities, the XTB Limited, and the X-trade Brokers Dom Maklerski SA. This is important for you because the investor protection amount and the regulator differ from entity to entity. 

Here’s a handy summary table for easy comparison:

XTB legal entities
Client country Investor protection amount Regulator Legal entity
United Kingdom £50,000 Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) XTB Ltd.
Hungary
Turkey
Italy €20,000 Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (‘CySEC’) XTB Limited
Other European clients €20,100 Polish Financial Supervision Authority (KNF) X-Trade Brokers Dom Maklerski SA 
Clients outside of Europe Not provided International Financial Services Commission of Belize (IFSC) XTB International Limited

Negative balance protection is provided. If the balance on your account goes into negative, you will be protected.

Background

XTB is listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange, which is a big plus for safety as XTB releases financial statements regularly and transparently. 

XTB was established in 2002. The longer the track record, the better. Longer track record means the company was able to manage financially tough times, like the financial crisis.

Being listed, being regulated by top tier regulator, like the FCA are all great signs for XTB's safety.

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XTB review
Bottom line

XTB is a good broker. It is regulated by more than 10 authorities globally, including the top-tier FCA and it is listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange. 

On the plus side, deposit and withdrawal are fast. We liked the seamless and hassle-free account opening. The research tools are easy-to-use.

XTB has some drawbacks though. Its product range is mainly limited to FX and CFDs, but there are real stocks too in some countries. When opening the account the sales team can be pushy. We also missed the 24/7 customer support.

We recommend XTB for clients preferring forex and CFD trading and aim for a fast account opening, cheap money withdrawal, and great research tools. Feel free to test it even via the demo account.

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XTB logo

XTB is primarily a forex and CFD broker and in some countries, you can also trade with real stocks. XTB is a global broker, it has more than ten offices worldwide. In Europe, it serves clients by a UK or a Polish entity. We tested the UK entity, but will provide info on all entities.

XTB is listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange. A listed company is more transparent. It discloses its financials regularly. XTB is authorized and regulated by different regulators, including top-tier regulator, the FCA.

XTB is considered safe because it is listed on a stock exchange, discloses its financials, and is regulated by a top-tier regulator.

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. In the UK, 79%, while in the rest of Europe 82% 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 CFD broker

Recommended for forex and CFD traders looking for quick deposit and withdrawal, and advanced research tools.

Compare to other brokers

Overall 5 stars

Pros
  • Fast deposit and withdrawal
  • Fast and user-friendly account opening
  • Good research tools
Cons
  • Limited product portfolio, mostly CFD and FX
  • Sales team can be pushy
  • Missing 24/7 customer support

Fees 4 stars

Pros
  • Low fees
  • No inactivity fee
  • Low financing rate
  • No withdrawal fee
Cons
None

Account opening 5 stars

Pros
  • Fast account opening
  • Account opening fully digital
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • Sales team pushy

Deposit and withdrawal 5 stars

Pros
  • Credit/Debit card deposit and withdrawal available
  • Speedy funding and withdrawal -within 3 days
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • High fees for electronic wallets deposit

Web trading platform 4 stars

Pros
  • Good search function
  • Good customizability (for chart, for workspace)
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • No two-step (safe) login
  • Limited order types

Mobile trading platform 4 stars

Pros
  • Good search function
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • No two-step (safe) login
  • Limited order types

Desktop trading platform 4 stars

Pros
  • Good search function
  • Good customizability (for chart, for workspace)
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • No two-step (safe) login
  • Limited order types

Markets and products 2 stars

The available asset classes to trade:

  • CFD
  • Crypto
  • Real stocks and ETFs for European clients except for UK and Hungary

Research 4 stars

Pros
  • Good interactive chart
  • Good set of analytical tools
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • No fundamental data available

Customer service 5 stars

Pros
  • Phone support available
  • Live chat available
  • Relevant answers
Cons
  • Slow support for e-mail
  • 24/5 availability

Education 5 stars

Pros
  • Trading platform tutorial videos
  • Educational videos
  • Demo account
Cons
None

Safety

Pros
  • Regulated by top tier financial authority
  • Listed on stock exchange
  • Well disclosed financial information
Cons
None

AUTHOR OF THIS REVIEW

Gergely Korpos
Gergely Korpos
Co-founder, CPO
Gergely's aim is to bring more clarity into personal investing. He has 10 years of experience in financial markets with GE Money, KPMG and MOL. He concluded thousands of trades as a commodity trader and financial portfolio manager
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