Regulated and trusted across the globe, IG offers traders the ultimate package of excellent trading and research tools, industry-leading education, competitive pricing, and an extensive list of tradeable products.
- Many deposit and withdrawal options
- Good educational tools
- No deposit fee/li>
- Clear fee report
- High forex and stock CFD fees
- Limited product portfolio
- Slow customer support
- No fundamental data available tools
IG was established in the UK in 1974 and is one of the biggest CFD brokers in the world. It is regulated by several bodies globally, including top-tier regulators like the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Germany’s Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin). IG Group is listed on the London Stock Exchange.
IG is considered safe because it is listed on a stock exchange, discloses its financials and is overseen by top-tier regulators.
Disclaimer: CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 71% 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. CFDs are not provided for US clients. Forex trading involves risk. Losses can exceed deposits.
Trading Platform & Tools
You can use either IG’s trading own platform or MetaTrader 4, a third-party trading platform. In this review, we tested IG’s own trading platform.
The web trading platform is available only in English.
Fees & Commissions
IG uses its size to provide traders competitive pricing across the board, regardless of the product you trade, and shines for its active trader pricing available through its Forex Direct accounts.
CFD account average spreads: For mini and standard size contracts, typical spreads during the main trading session from Midnight to 9 pm (0000 – 2100, GMT+1 time) averaged 0.745 pips in August 2020. It is worth noting that just like with other brokers, spreads during low-liquid times are higher than normal, averaging 1.39 pips at IG in August 2020, during the 2100 – 0000 (GMT+1) session.
CFD account active trader rebates: For volume traders who qualify as professionals under EU rules, IG offers pricing discounts via its active trader rebate program. This program provides three tiers. In tier one, if you transact over £50M worth of forex volume per month, then 10% of the spread is rebated. Meanwhile, if you trade over £300M per month, then as much as 20% is rebated. To put this in context, 20% off of 0.745 pips (August 2020 data from main trading sessions) would have resulted in an all-in cost of just 0.596 pips, which is very competitive.
DMA account (Forex Direct): For the savviest traders seeking more significant discounts than what is offered in the CFD account, the DMA account is the better option than the active trader rebates on IG’s spread-only pricing. This commission-based offering, Forex Direct, is available via the DMA account and provides traders access to the L2 Dealer platform. The DMA account requires just a £1,000 minimum and uses a tiered pricing scale based on the trader’s previous month’s trading volume.
DMA account average spreads: With average spreads of 0.165 on the EUR/USD for the 12 weeks ending March 19th, 2019, the all-in spread is 1.3 pips using the base tier of $60 per million for traders that do less than $100M per month. Traders that do over 1.5 yards (billion USD in volume) see their per-side commission drop to $10 per million ($20 round-turn), resulting in an effective spread of 0.165 + 0.20 = 0.365 pips, using the 2019 data.
Execution method: Forex Direct streams from interbank liquidity providers where IG acts as an agency broker and doesn’t add on any additional spread. Instead, IG adds a commission to each trade you make. Finally, in the CFD account, users can switch between the execution method via the available order types, depending on if they want to force open a trade with potential slippage, compared to orders that can be rejected if the price is no longer available.
IG Broker – Research
IG provides traders a vast selection of excellent quality market research from both in-house and third-party providers.
News and Market Analysis: IG’s research tools include staples such as streaming news from Reuters and an economic calendar. Advanced tools include a customizable screener for various asset classes, including CFDs on global stocks, forex, and cryptocurrencies. Demonstrating its innovation, content is even personalized with the new “Recommended News” section that aims to tailor headlines based on your account traits. There are also numerous streaming videos from Reuters and IGTV, with multiple videos daily covering global financial markets.
Trading signals and premium content: IG integrates Autochartist and PIA First into its platform, allowing traders to view trade signals generated by automated pattern-recognition and technical analysis. These trading ideas conveniently enable a trader to copy them with a single click, which pre-populates the trade ticket window. Premium research from Real Vision TV is provided at IG for free to traders who deposit at least $500, and Real Vision research is available for those with $5000 or more on deposit.
DailyFX and IG Community: IG powers DailyFX, a blog-style news website that provides IG’s clients with news content and various research tools. Finally, IG Community, a recently launched social network resembling an advanced forum, brings together over 80,000 users. While the content is crowdsourced, I found it to be of value because IG hand picks the best research articles. There is also a time-line, akin to a social network showing member’s actions, such as new joins, follows, and comments on threads.
IG is a leader for its educational content, offering a vast selection of formats including video, written articles, and even progress tracking and quizzes. In addition, IG even has its own mobile app for education, in addition to educational courses by experience level on IG Academy, numerous weekly webinars, and guides provided by Daily FX.
DailyFX: With eight trading guides for beginners, five advanced guides, and written materials in a course designed with progress tracking, DailyFX has a good array of educational content. For example, there are seven articles about risk-management with Bollinger Bands. In addition to educational content, there are 17 beginner articles, and support is also available for additional languages.
IG Academy: There are eight courses organized by experience level, where each one provides multiple chapters with quizzes incorporated throughout, creating an interactive experience. I also liked that specific chapters had video content included, in addition to lesson summaries.
Videos: In addition to numerous archived content and playlists on its various YouTube Channels, IG provides multiple webinars per week. Its in-house staff covers educational topics live, such as the Technical Analysis Masterclass. Even archived webinars are organized by experience level, making it easy to find what you need quickly.
IG Community: As noted in the research section above, the IG Community produces content that is curated by IG, and this includes educational articles. For example, there are traders sharing their personal views, such as regarding any past trading failures and success.
IG is an excellent broker that ranks at the top in nearly all key categories of importance to traders.
As an online broker, IG goes above and beyond, offering a rich experience with many options for investing in financial markets. Its trading costs, platforms, ease of use, education, mobile apps, research, range of markets, and trading tools make it a winner.