OANDA Review 2023
Forex trading can offer lucrative returns, however choosing the right broker has always been critically important. OANDA is one of the leading brokerage firms best known for its premium trading platforms, multiple account types, and competitive spreads. Although the broker’s product portfolio is slightly inferior to its competitors, it still offers sufficient tradable assets across various markets, including forex, stocks, commodities, and cryptocurrencies. In this piece, we review the broker in detail.
Regulation and Security
OANDA Global Markets Ltd is a member firm of OANDA Corporations. The company is registered and fully authorized by the British Virgin Island under registration number SIBA/L/20/1130. While OANDA holds multiple regulations worldwide, the firm’s other regulators include;
- United States: Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), National Futures Association (NFA)
- Canada: Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC).
- Australia: Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)
- United Kingdom: Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)
- Europe: Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA)
- Japan: Institute Financial Futures Association (IFFA.)
- Asia: Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), International Enterprise Singapore (IES)
Moreover, the firm employs state-of-the-art security protocols, including SSL encryption and two-step authentication, to protect customers’ personal and financial data.
Negative Balance Protection
Negative balance protection is unavailable to OANDA clients in the United States. Therefore, traders with a deficit in their trading accounts risk owing money to the broker. However, this is not the case with European clients. Further, the broker does not support guaranteed stop-loss for US and UK customers.
Under the multi-regulatory framework, OANDA must keep clients’ funds in segregated bank accounts, preferably with a grade-A investment banks. OANDA’s policy is never to withdraw customer funds unless they are a direct outcome of a trading-related activity or a withdrawal request made by a customer.
Is OANDA available worldwide?
Being a multinational brokerage firm, the company accepts clients from all over the world, except for a few jurisdictions, including but not limited to Belarus, Syria, Iraq, Sudan, and Zimbabwe. The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) regularly updates the list of restricted countries.
Keeping in view the trading needs of both newbies and professional clients, the broker offers a full suite of the industry’s most renowned platforms, MetaTrader4 and MetaTrader 5. The company also provides a proprietary trading app, the ‘FXTrade’. Clients can either use the available trading platforms online or access the financial markets from the comfort of their desktops.
On-the-go clients can explore tradable opportunities with the MT4/MT5 mobile trading platforms or use the company’s award-winning trading app for an enhanced trading experience. You can view brokers who offer more platforms to trade with such as cTrader and Ninja Trader by clicking here.
Let’s quickly mention some key features available under each channel.
In addition to customizing trading preferences on the MT4/MT5 web terminal, clients can access all basic and advanced trading tools needed for meaningful trading exposure. With an intuitive trading interface, improved charting options, and multiple order types, including stop, limit and close-by orders, the MT4/MT5 online trading platforms are a real blessing for those new to forex trading.
The MT4/MT5 market watch enables customers to access real-time quotes. Clients can switch between 09-time frames followed by multiple displays, including 05 candles on daily NY charts. There are over 50 technical indicators incorporated into the MT4 desktop version to help clients perform in-depth technical analysis and make informed trading decisions. The MT5 desktop terminal supports 21 charting timeframes and 06 order types besides featuring the AutoChartist tool. Moreover, MT5’s built-in economic calendar is helpful for investors to track upcoming major economic events and stay abreast of the market.
Both MT4/MT5 mobile trading apps grant access to high-performance, interactive pricing charts in real-time, allowing you to zoom in, out and scroll. The MT4 mobile app comes with 09-time frames and 30 most popular technical indicators, and 24 analytical objects allowing clients to spot the best trading opportunities confidently.
On the other hand, the FxTrade app runs exceptionally well on Android and iOS-supported mobile devices. While clients can place, modify or cancel orders using one-click trading, it supports lightning-fast trade execution with no latency or slippage issues. Clients who do not wish to compromise their moveability will find it extremely helpful for seamless trading round the clock.
To cater to the trading needs of individual investors, the company offers five account types, including Standard, Core, Swap-free, Premium, and Core Premium. While the Standard account aims for newbies, the company facilitates skilled professionals in the Core account. Premium and Core premium accounts serve advanced-level traders and institutional clients, respectively. The company also offers additional benefits to VIP traders, such as priority support from a dedicated manager, zero deposit and withdrawal fees, and the free VPS.
While the minimum trade size in the Standard, Core, and Swap-free account is 0.01 lots, Premium investors must trade a minimum of 0.1 lots. Further, VIP clients must maintain a minimum of $20,000 in their account besides undergoing a $10 Million trading volume each month. The company allow clients to employ as many trading strategies as possible, including scalping and hedging techniques. The company sets the stop-out level as 50% across all trading accounts.
You should clarify your objectives before selecting an account type, as the wrong choice may lead to unwanted outcomes. View a wider range of account types by comparing other brokers.
OANDA signing-up process is pretty straightforward. Clients may complete the whole process within a couple of minutes. Owing to the strict regulatory framework, OANDA requires its customers to verify their accounts before going live. The registration process has seven steps to follow.
1) Enter your desired username followed by email ID and password.
2) Provide personal details.
3) Fill in the home address
4) Add employment history
5) Enter previous trading exposure
6) Confirm relative knowledge
7) Complete the verification
As soon as you log in to your trading account, a sleekly designed intuitive interface welcomes you on board. While the upper navigation bar allows you to customize your account, clients can use the side navigation panel for setting up their trading preferences. Other options include technical and fundamental analysis, a news feed, and the market pulse. The interface displays your open and closed positions on the right side frame. Investors can also view their net assets value, realized profits and available margin above the portfolio section. Moreover, traders can track their performance over different time horizons using the trading performance tab.
Deposit and withdrawals
OANDA accepts multiple payment methods for deposits and withdrawals, including Credit cards, Debit cards, Bank transfers, e-Wallets (Skrill, Neteller) and other local payment methods. The company hasn’t stipulated the minimum deposit amount. Therefore, you may get started with any amount as long as it is sufficient to cover your margin requirements.
While deposits made through cards instantly reflect in your account, bank transfers may take up to five working days. Moreover, there is no minimum or maximum deposit limit for bank transfers. Notably, you can also fund your account with ACH transfers with a maximum deposit limit of $50,000 in a single go.
OANDA allows withdrawals via debit card and wire transfers. You can initiate a funds withdrawal request using the ‘manage funds’ tab on your dashboard. The company follows a hierarchical procedure for withdrawals. For instance, If you’ve funded your account using multiple payment methods, use a debit card first, then a wire transfer while requesting withdrawals. Withdrawals can take up to 5 working days to reach your account.
Oanda provides various financial instruments across major asset classes, including forex, stocks, metals, commodities, and cryptocurrencies. However, each asset class lacks competitional variation. Among the limited selection of instruments offered by the broker are 45 currency pairings, 15 indices, 07 commodities, 03 metals, and 04 digital assets. In addition, the products offered vary based on the company and account type you select.
For instance, the broker doesn’t provide crypto CFDs for clients based in the UK amid FCA restrictions. If you are looking for a broker that accepts UK residents or other country’s you should view our broker comparison page by clicking here.
Commissions and fees
Clients are likely to incur trading and non-trading fees at OANDA.com. Although the company keeps pricing well in line with average industry standards, it might appear expensive to some traders. For instance, the broker applies a $20 fee on 1st withdrawal via bank transfers, followed by a processing fee and a $15 charge for each subsequent withdrawal within the same month. Further, the company employs an admin fee of up to 2.0% besides inactivity charges of $10 each month, which is applicable on accounts dormant for more than 12 months.
OANDA employs a variable spread charging policy for trading CFDs. According to your chosen account type, the spread costs range from 0.2 pips to 1.6 pips. However, you can access cheaper spreads with the broker’s core pricing plus commission model. Irrespective of the account type, the company employs spreads based on the chosen pricing model (i.e, Spread only or Core pricing). For instance, the average spread on EUR/USD for the spread-only pricing method is 1.4 pips, while it becomes 0.4 pips for the Core pricing model.
On the other hand, with the core plus commission plan, the average spread for the same currency pairs reduces to 0.1 pips, 0.1 pips, and 0.4pips, respectively. Similarly, the average spread cost for trading index CFDs like S&P500 is as low as 0.3 pips. However, clients pay a commission of up to $40 for trading $1M traded in the core-plus commission pricing structure. Further, the company applies overnight charges for keeping positions open past 5 PM EST.
Leverage refers to borrowing money from your broker to control large positions for fractional investment. Typically, you trade CFD products using leverage. While leverage increases your account exposure, it also magnifies the risk of loss. In other words, it’s a double-edged sword that you need to use carefully.
While the company offers a leverage of up to 1:200 across all asset classes, the maximum leverage available to clients residing in jurisdictions with strict regulatory oversight is 1:30, 1:20, 1:10, and 1:5 for trading currencies, indices, commodities, and bonds, respectively.
Analysis and Education
OANDA offers next-level educational resources to help clients learn and grow. Investors can discover a solid balance of textual and video content, while the online webinars with finance professionals make the part more learnable. Multiple video lessons teach traders how to do technical & fundamental analysis. Guidance on setting up an account and how to use the platform is remarkable.
Although the company provides a dedicated FAQs section and an AI-powered auto-response robot, the need to connect with a live customer support agent is strongly felt. Since the company doesn’t offer live chat support, you need to escalate your concerns over email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or phone (tel: +44 20 3151 2050). You may also follow the company on social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
Reputation amongst Traders
Investors hold a mix of opinions about OANDA. While the majority of clients appraise the company for competitive spreads, and intuitive trading platforms, some raise concerns over its delayed trade execution and slow withdrawal process. Unfortunately, the company couldn’t secure an exceptional rating on Trustpilot.
OANDA’s customer-centric approach has garnered it to receive some of the industry’s top awards.
- Most Outstanding Retail-Sector FX Trading Platform by Corporate Vision Magazine’s Corporate Excellence Awards 2020
- Best FX Data Provider by Global Brand Awards 2020
- Best Forex and CFD Broker 2020 by Trading View Clients
- Most Popular Broker 2020 by Trading View Clients
Can beginners trade with OANDA?
OANDA ranks high for its user-friendly trading app and rich educational resources, making it a suitable choice for newbies. However, trading isn’t learned overnight. You need to devote time and effort to become familiar with market swings and effective risk management strategies. Undoubtedly, the broker’s devotion to helping beginners learn the odds of trading is evident from its products offered in the learning section.
With easy-to-use trading platforms, flexible account types, and a quality research section, the company is a competitive choice for retail and institutional clients. The broker has a great regulatory track record, and the fact that it supports features offered by third parties strengthens its range of offerings. However, the company falls short of being the best brokerage firm due to the restricted product portfolio and below-average pricing structure.