9 Best Forex Brokers Australia 2024 – Compare ASIC Regulated Forex Brokers

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Trading forex in Australia has never been simpler – all you need is an account with an ASIC-regulated broker that supports your preferred currency pairs. But which forex broker is best in 2024?

In this guide, we compare the 9 best forex brokers in Australia for supported pairs, low fees, tight spreads, trading tools, speedy payments, and much more.

The Best Forex Brokers for Beginners Ranked

Listed below are the 9 best forex brokers in Australia for 2024:

  1. XTB: A popular forex broker that offers leverage of up to 1:30 on majors, and 1:20 on minors and exotics. It supports 48 currency pairs and there are no commissions to pay. Standard accounts come with a minimum spread of 0.3 pips. XTB supports its own proprietary trading suite – xStation 5. It also supports MT4. In addition to forex, XTB supports stocks, ETFs, and commodities.
  2. Libertex: An established forex broker with over three million clients. It has a minimum deposit requirement of $10 and supports 50 forex pairs. In terms of fees, Libertex is a commission-free broker, so you’ll only need to cover the spread. When trading EUR/USD, spreads start from 0.2 pips. Libertex supports MT4, MT5, and its own web and mobile trading platforms.
  3. Pepperstone: Another forex broker that’s popular for raw spreads is Pepperstone. It offers institutional-grade spreads starting from 0.0 pips, and commissions amount to $3.50 per traded lot, per slide. While Pepperstone doesn’t have its own platform, it supports cTrader, MT4, MT5, and TradingView. No minimum deposit is required at Pepperstone and the platform is regulated by ASIC.
  4. CMC Markets: This ASIC-regulated forex broker supports more than 330 currency pairs. CMC Markets offers tier-one liquidity from eight financial institutions. It has an average execution speed of 0.0045 seconds. No commissions are charged by CMC Markets when trading forex. Spreads start from 0.7 pips.
  5. Go Markets: A multi-asset trading platform that supports dozens of forex pairs. There are two accounts to choose from at Go Markets. The standard account offers 0% commission, forex trading with minimum spreads of 0.8 pips. The Go Plus account offers spreads from 0.0 pips and a commission of $3 per traded lot. Forex can be traded 24/5 and leverage of up to 1:30 is available at this ASIC-regulated broker.
  6. AvaTrade: An ASIC-regulated CFD and forex broker with licenses in eight other jurisdictions. It supports dozens of forex pairs and no trading commissions are charged. Minimum spreads on AUD/USD are 1.1 pips. EUR/USD is slightly more competitive at 0.9 pips. AvaTrade also supports forex options, which are aimed at advanced trading strategies.
  7. Skilling: Skilling supports more than 1,200 financial markets, including 73 forex pairs, stocks, commodities, and cryptocurrencies. The commission-free account offers minimum forex spreads of 0.7 pips. Or, you can open a premium account and secure spreads of 0.1 pips. This attracts a commission of $30 per $1 million traded and a minimum deposit of €5,000 (about $8,200).
  8. Blueberry Markets: Based in Sydney, Blueberry Markets is a popular forex broker offering raw spread accounts. You’ll get minimum spreads of 0.0 pips on majors and pay a commission of $7 per round lot. There is a small minimum deposit requirement of $100 and Blueberry Markets supports MT4 and MT5. Blueberry Markets also offers a free demo account with $100,000 in virtual funds.
  9. IG: This forex broker supports over 80 currency pairs, alongside 17,000 other financial instruments. IG offers DMA accounts for experienced traders who want the lowest spreads in the market. It also offers commission-free accounts with a minimum spread of 0.6 pips on AUD/USD. When depositing funds with a debit/credit card or PayPal, a $450 minimum is required.

The Best Forex Brokers for Beginners Ranked

We will now review the best forex brokers in Australia for 2024. Read on to find the most suitable broker for your forex trading needs.

1. XTB –  Trade Major Forex Pairs at 0% Commission and Spreads From 0.3 Pips 

XTB is an established forex broker that also supports CFD markets. This includes stocks, ETFs, commodities, and indices. When trading forex at XTB, you’ll have access to 48 currency pairs. Some of the most traded markets include EUR/USD, GBP/USD, and AUD/USD. XTB doesn’t charge any trading commissions when you trade forex. Instead, you’ll only need to cover the spread.

Standard accounts at XTB come with minimum spreads of 0.3 pips on major pairs. However, the real-time spread is often higher than this. As such, you’ll need to assess spreads when setting up your trade. Forex can be traded on XTB 24 hours per day, between Sunday and Friday. There is a minimum margin requirement of 3.33% on major pairs. This means you’ll need to have at least $33.33 in your account for every $1,000 traded.

XTB review

Some minor pairs and all exotics come with higher margin requirements of 5%. This is in line with ASIC limits for Australian retail clients. In terms of useability, XTB is more suitable for intermediate and experienced traders. This is because its proprietary suite, xStation 5, comes packed with advanced features. This includes super-fast execution speeds, drawing tools, and technical indicators.

It also comes with risk management tools, market sentiment bars, and an in-built economic calendar. xStation 5 is available online, via desktop software, and an iOS/Android app. XTB offers a demo account with $100,000 in paper funds – which enables you to try xStation 5 risk-free. You’ll have four weeks to use the demo account until it expires.

XTB review

When it comes to payments, XTB accepts debit/credit cards and e-wallets. Bank wires are also supported. There’s no minimum deposit requirement to meet. Although XTB isn’t regulated by ASIC, it does hold licenses with other financial bodies. This includes the UK’s FCA and CySEC in Cyprus. Moreover, XTB is covered by the UK’s FSCS.  This means that if XTB went bankrupt, the FSCS would cover client accounts up to £85,000 (about $163,000).

As an XTB client, Australian residents are also eligible for the FSCS – even though they don’t live in the UK.  All that being said, you’ll need to consider whether you feel comfortable using a forex broker that isn’t regulated in Australia. Another drawback of XTB is that it charges inactivity fees. If you don’t place a trade within 12 months, your account will be marked as dormant. Thereon, XTB will deduct $10 from your account every month until you place a trade. If your account is already empty, no funds will be collected.

No. Forex Pairs Pricing System USD/AUD Spread Max Leverage Min. Deposit Top Features
48
Trade forex on a spread-only basis
Minimum spread is currently 1.1 pips 1:30 No minimum
  • Trade 48 forex pairs without paying a commission
  • Margin requirement of 3.33% when trading major forex pairs
  • No minimum deposit requirements or transaction fees
  • Lots of advanced analysis tools, including technical indicators

Pros pros

  • 0% commission forex broker supporting 48 currency pairs
  • Trade major forex pairs with a minimum margin requirement of 3.33%
  • Australian clients are covered by the UK’s FSCS protection scheme of up to £85,000
  • Also supports commission-free stocks and ETFs
  • Demo account allows you to try xStation 5 risk-free

Cons cons

  • Spreads are often much higher than the advertised minimum
  • Is not regulated by ASIC

78% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.

2. Libertex – Tight Spreads Starting From 0.2 Pips on Major Forex Pairs  

If trading fees are your main priority, Libertex could be the best forex broker for you. Like many forex brokers, Libertex offers a commission-free pricing system. However, its spreads are very competitive – especially on major forex pairs. For example, the average spread on EUR/USD and GBP/USD is just 0.2 pips. If you’re looking to trade AUD/USD, spreads average 0.6 pips.

Crucially, these are the ‘average’ spreads over the prior 24 hours – not the ‘minimum’. Libertex is also one of the few forex brokers in Australia to waive swap fees. These are fees charged when you hold a forex position open past market hours. As such, Libertex is also suitable for longer-term forex strategies – such as swing trading.

Libertex review

The commission-free offering at Libertex is also available on other CFD assets. This includes cryptocurrencies, stocks, ETFs, indices, and commodities. We found that spreads are competitive across these markets too. In terms of leverage, you’ll get 1:30 on major forex pairs, as per ASIC limits. There is a small minimum deposit requirement of $10 at Libertex.

However, you’ll need to deposit at least $33.33 to cover the minimum forex margin requirement. Or, if you’re trading minors/exotics, $50 will be required. When it comes to trading platforms, Libertex supports MT4 and MT5. These platforms will suit advanced forex traders seeking drawing tools, custom order types, and technical indicators.

Libertex review

If you’re an entry-level forex trader, you might prefer the Libertex web trading dashboard. This comes with fewer analysis features but the layout is more suitable for newbies. Either way, all platforms support 50 forex pairs and offer the same pricing structure. Libertex also has its own trading app for iOS and Android.

Reviews in the public domain are mixed. For example, the Libertex app on Google Play is rated 4.2/5. On iOS, Libertex is rated just 3/5. However, this is across just two ratings. In terms of safety, Libertex has been operational for over 25 years and has three million clients. That said, Libertex isn’t regulated by ASIC. It does, however, hold a brokerage license with CySEC.

No. Forex Pairs Pricing System USD/AUD Spread Max Leverage Min. Deposit Top Features
50
Trade forex on a spread-only basis
Average spread of 0.6 pips 1:30 $10
  • Minimum forex spreads of 0.2 pips
  • Get started with just $10
  • Free demo account with $50,000 in virtual funds
  • No trading commissions are charged

Pros pros

  • Tight spreads averaging just 0.2 pips on major forex pairs
  • No trading commissions to pay when trading forex
  • Small minimum deposit requirement of $10
  • Choose from three trading platforms – including MT4/5
  • No swap fees charged on overnight positions

Cons cons

  • Is not regulated by ASIC
  • iOS app is rated 3/5 on the App Store

Trading in financial instruments is a risky activity and can bring not only profits but also losses.

3. Pepperstone – Get Institutional-Grade Forex Spreads Without Meeting a Minimum Deposit       

Voted broker of the year in 2022 by TradingView, Pepperstone is a popular forex trading platform that’s also worth considering. By opening a Pepperstone razor account you will have access to institutional-grade forex spreads. This starts from 0.0 pips on many pairs, including AUD/USD. There is a small commission of $3.50 per traded lot on this account type. That said, unlike many zero-spread forex accounts, there are no minimum deposit requirements at Pepperstone.

Pepperstone review

If you prefer trading without commissions, Pepperstone also offers a standard account. This comes with a standard spread of 1 pip on AUD/USD. Both account types offer leverage of up to 1:30 to Australian retail clients. In addition to TradingView, Pepperstone also supports MT4, MT5, and cTrader. Moreover, Pepperstone also supports other asset classes, backed by CFDs. This includes commodities, indices, stocks, ETFs, and cryptocurrencies. Pepperstone is considered a safe broker and is regulated by ASIC.

No. Forex Pairs Pricing System USD/AUD Spread Max Leverage Min. Deposit Top Features
60+ Standard accounts offer 0% commission and minimum spreads of 1 pip

Razor accounts offer minimum spreads of 0.0 pips, plus a commission of $3.50 per traded lot

Minimum spread of 1 pip (standard) and 0.0 pips (razor) 1:30 No minimum
  • Voted 2022 broker of the year by TradingView
  • Trade AUD/USD at 0.0 pips during the Australian trading session

Pros pros

  • Voted 2022 broker of the year by TradingView
  • 0.0 pip trading on AUD/USD via the razor account
  • No minimum deposit requirements
  • Supports over 60 forex pairs – plus stocks, ETFs, and other assets

Cons cons

  • Spreads on non-forex markets are not as competitive
  • Does not have proprietary trading software

Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 75.2% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading spread bets and CFDs with this provider.

4. CMC Markets – ASIC-Regulated Forex Broker Supporting Over 330 Currency Pairs 

CMC Markets is a licensed forex broker that’s authorized and regulated by ASIC. It also holds licenses with other tier-one bodies, including the UK’s FCA and CIRO in Canada. One of the main features of CMC Markets is its support for over 330 forex pairs. This covers all majors and minors, plus dozens of exotics. The latter includes MXN, TRY, CZK, CNH, and NOK.

Therefore, CMC Markets is suitable if you want exposure to more volatile currencies. In addition to forex, CMC Markets supports thousands of other CFD instruments. This includes bonds, cryptocurrencies, commodities, and stocks. CMC Markets also supports forex indices. These enable you to trade individual currencies, rather than pairs.

CMC Markets review

The indices will contain a basket of different pairs for your chosen index. For example, suppose you want to trade the Australian dollar. In this instance, the indices contain multiple AUD pairs – such as AUD/USD, AUD/SGD, AUD/NZD, and AUD/GBP. The index is weighted based on the amount of liquidity each pair attracts.

In terms of trading fees, CMC Markets is a commission-free forex broker. So it’s only the spread that needs to be covered. The minimum spread on AUD/USD is 0.6 pips. While EUR/USD can be traded from just 0.5 pips. However, these are the ‘minimum’ spreads and not the average. As such, you might find that the spreads are actually much higher.

No. Forex Pairs Pricing System USD/AUD Spread Max Leverage Min. Deposit Top Features
330+
Trade forex on a spread-only basis
Minimum spread of 0.6 pips 1:30 No minimum
  • Huge number of currency markets – over 330+ pairs supported
  • Trade forex indices for exposure to individual currencies
  • Minimum spreads of 0.6 pips on AUD/USD
  • No minimum deposit requirements

Pros pros

  • Trade over 330 forex pairs – including a wide range of exotics
  • Forex indices allow you to trade baskets of pairs
  • Minimum spreads on major pairs start from 0.5 pips
  • No account minimums and leverage of up to 1:30
  • Also supports share investing

Cons cons

  • Actual spreads are often higher than the advertised minimum
  • $15 per month fee after one year of inactivity

Investing in CMC Markets derivative products carries significant risks and is not suitable for all investors.

5. Go Markets – Two Forex Trading Accounts to Choose From – Including Spreads From 0.0 Pips  

GO Markets is a user-friendly forex broker that supports dozens of currency pairs. There are two accounts to choose from at this popular broker. First, there is the standard account. This offers 0% commission forex trading and spreads start from 0.8 pips. This account is aimed at casual traders who want to trade with smaller amounts.

Alternatively, active traders might consider the Go Plus account. While this comes with a commission of $3 per traded lot, spreads start from 0.0 pips. Both account types at Go Markets have a minimum trade size of 0.01 lots. That’s $1,000 or $33.33 when applying leverage of 1:30. Go Markets is a licensed forex broker, authorized and regulated by ASIC. It supports AUD payments with multiple deposit methods, including BPAY, debit/credit cards, and e-wallets.

Go Markets review

The latter includes Skrill and Neteller. All supported payment methods are fee-free. That said, the minimum deposit at Go Markets is $200, which is higher than most other forex brokers. Moreover, Go Markets doesn’t have its own native trading suite. Instead, it supports third-party platforms, including MT4, MT5 and cTrader.

No. Forex Pairs Pricing System USD/AUD Spread Max Leverage Min. Deposit Top Features
Not stated, but supports all majors and minors, plus a selection of exotics

Standard account offers 0% commission trading with minimum spreads of 0.8 pips

Go Plus account offers spreads from 0.0 pips with a commission of $3 per traded lot

Average spread of 0.1 pips on the Go Plus account 1:30 $200
  • Minimum spreads start from 0.0 pips
  • 0% commission accounts available to casual traders
  • Supports MT4/Mt5/cTrader

Pros pros

  • Authorized and regulated by ASIC
  • Choose from a 0.0 pip or 0% commission account
  • Supports AUD deposits – including BPAY and debit/credit cards
  • Trade via MT4, MT5, or cTrader

Cons cons

  • Does not have its own proprietary trading suite
  • Minimum deposit of $200

Trading in CFDs carries significant risks and is not suitable for everyone.

6. AvaTrade – 0% Commission Forex Broker With Currency Options         

Founded in 2006, AvaTrade is a reputable forex broker that is licensed in nine different countries. This includes authorization and regulation from ASIC, meaning that Australia can trade forex safely. There is just one account type to choose from on AvaTrade and this offers 0% commissions on all supported markets. You’ll have access to 53 pairs here, split across the majors, minors, and exotics.

AvaTrade review

Spreads start from 0.9 pips on EUR/USD and 1.1 pips on AUD/USD. Leverage of up to 1:30 is available on majors, and 1:20 on minors/exotics. In addition, AvaTrade is also one of the best forex brokers in Australia for trading currency options. It has a dedicated platform for options and multiple strategies are supported. This includes risk reversals and straddles. You’ll need to deposit at least $100 to get started at AvaTrade, although demo accounts are also supported.

No. Forex Pairs Pricing System USD/AUD Spread Max Leverage Min. Deposit Top Features
53 Trade forex on a spread-only basis Minimum spread of 1.1 pips 1:30 $100
  • Trade currency options with leverage 
  • No commissions are charged on any supported markets
  • Regulated in nine countries, including Australia 

Pros pros

  • ASIC-regulated forex broker that’s licensed in eight other countries
  • Trade forex and currency options at 0% commission
  • Supports multiple trading platforms – including MT4 and cTrader
  • Forex demo account with $100,000 in paper funds

Cons cons

  • Minimum spread of 1.1 pips on AUD/USD
  • $50/month fee after just three months of inactivity

Trading CFDs and FX Options entails risk and could result in the loss of your capital.

7. Skilling – Top-Rated Forex Broker Offering Premium Accounts With Minimum Spreads of 0.1 Pips        

Skilling is a low-fee forex broker that supports Australian traders. Its premium account offers minimum spreads of 0.1 pips on major forex pairs. This attracts a commission of $30 for every $1 million traded. This converts to about $3 for every traded lot, per slide. That said, the premium account comes with a minimum deposit of €5,000 or about $8,200. If this is out of reach, Skilling also offers standard accounts. The minimum deposit is reduced to €100 or about $165.

Skilling review

The standard account offers 0% commission on all forex markets, but minimum spreads are higher at 0.7 pips. Both account types offer leverage of up to 1:30 and access to 73 forex pairs. The minimum trade size is 0.01 lots, which is standard across most forex brokers. The main drawback is that Australian clients fall under the remit of the Financial Services Authority Seychelles (FSA), as Skilling is not regulated by ASIC.

No. Forex Pairs Pricing System USD/AUD Spread Max Leverage Min. Deposit Top Features
73 Standard accounts offer 0% commission and minimum spreads of 0.7 pips

Premium accounts offer minimum spreads of 0.1 pips, plus a commission of $30 per $1 million traded

Minimum and average spread of 0.4 pips and 0.6 pips, respectively (premium accounts) 1:30 Approx. $165 (standard) and $8,200 (premium)
  • Supports 73 forex pairs
  • Premium accounts offer competitive spreads and commissions

Pros pros

  • Average spread of 0.6 pips on AUD/USD (premium accounts)
  • Standard accounts offer 0% commission trading
  • Supports cTrader and MT4
  • Fast and hassle-free signup process

Cons cons

  • Spreads on standard accounts are often above 2 pips on AUD/USD
  • Huge minimum deposit of approximately $8,200 to open a premium account

Trading financial products on margin carries a high degree of risk and is not suitable for all investors.

8. Blueberry Markets – Sydney-Based Forex Broker With Zero-Spread Accounts [$100 Minimum Deposit]        

Blueberry Markets is a domestic forex broker headquartered in Sydney. Authorized and regulated by ASIC, Blueberry Markets has a 4.9/5 score on Google across 1,650 individual reviews. Many existing clients praise Blueberry Markets for its top-notch customer support and transparent trading fees. There are two forex account types to choose from at Blueberry Markets. The direct account offers zero spreads on major pairs, alongside a commission of $7 per round lot.

Blueberry Markets review

There’s also a commission-free account but this comes with a minimum spread of 1 pip. Both accounts have a minimum deposit of $100. Blueberry Markets also supports other assets – including stocks, commodities, and indices. However, it lists just 300 markets in total, which is a lot less than other online brokers. Moreover, Blueberry Markets doesn’t have its own native trading suite. Instead, you’ll need to choose from MT4 or MT5.

No. Forex Pairs Pricing System USD/AUD Spread Max Leverage Min. Deposit Top Features
38 Standard accounts offer 0% commission and minimum spreads of 1 pip

Direct accounts offer minimum spreads of 0.0 pips, plus a commission of $7 per round lot

Currently 0.1 pip (direct account) 1:30 $100
  • Trade major forex pairs from 0.1 pips
  • Zero-spread accounts require a minimum deposit of just $100

Pros pros

  • Zero spread accounts with a reasonable minimum deposit of $100
  • Rated 4.9/5 on Google with frequent praise for top-notch customer support
  • Accepts POLi, local transfers, and debit/credit cards
  • Based in Sydney and regulated by ASIC

Cons cons

  • Just 38 forex markets supported – including 4 AUD pairs
  • Only supports MT4/5 – which are geared toward more experienced traders

Trading FX and CFDs on margin involves a high level of risk and may not be suitable for all investors.

9. IG – Established Forex Broker With Competitive Spreads and Commissions          

IG is a popular trading platform that supports over 17,000 financial instruments. Authorized and regulated by ASIC, IG offers two primary account types. First, casual traders might prefer the standard account, which offers 0% commission trading. This offers a minimum spread of 0.6 pips on AUD/USD and EUR/USD. That said, the average spread is much higher at 1.01 pips and 1 pip respectively.

IG forex review

Second, IG also offers direct market access (DMA) accounts. These are aimed at experienced forex traders and provide access to other market participants. In other words, banks and financial institutions. As such, DMA accounts offer the lowest forex spreads in the market – often at 0.0 pips. This account type comes with a commission of $10 per $1 million traded. This is competitive, as it converts to about $1 per traded lot, per slide.

No. Forex Pairs Pricing System USD/AUD Spread Max Leverage Min. Deposit Top Features
80+ Standard accounts offer 0% commission and minimum spreads of 0.6 pips

DMA accounts offer institutional-grade spreads plus a commission of $10 per $1 million traded

Minimum and average spread of 0.6 pips and 1.01 pips, respectively (standard accounts) 1:30 $450 when using a debit/credit card or PayPal. No minimum deposit on bank transfers.
  • 0% commission accounts come with low minimum spreads of 0.6 pips
  • One of the best forex trading platforms in Australia for DMA accounts

Pros pros

  • DMA accounts offer access to institutional-grade forex spreads
  • Minimum spreads of 0.6 pips on the 0% commission account
  • Supports more than 80 forex pairs
  • Free forex demo accounts that track live market conditions

Cons cons

  • Minimum deposit of $450 when using a debit/credit card or PayPal
  • Often a disparity between minimum and average spreads

Our Methodology: How we Test Forex Trading Platforms

In order to rank the 9 best Australian forex brokers, we utilized a strict methodology. This consists of various stages, which are outlined below

  • Initial Selection: There are dozens of forex brokers accepting Australian clients, so we initially created a shortlist of reputable platforms to review. Our minimum criteria for each shortlisted broker was authorization and/or regulation by ASIC. Some brokers were regulated by other tier-one bodies, such as the UK’s FCA or CySEC in the EU.
  • Research and Analysis: Next, we researched and analyzed the fundamentals of each forex broker. This included the types of forex accounts offered and the respective trading fees. We took a deep dive into minimum and average spreads, commissions, and any other account charges. We also explored what forex pairs are supported and whether any other asset classes are listed, such as stocks and commodities. In addition, we researched payment methods and minimum account requirements.
  • Platform Testing: To get a full 36-degree overview of each forex broker, we then tested their platforms. We achieved this by opening demo accounts and trading with virtual capital. This enabled us to explore the user-friendliness of the platform and what trading tools it supported. By trading in live market conditions, we also re-analyzed average spreads. We then compared the average spreads to those advertised by each broker. Average execution speeds were also tested to ensure a smooth trading experience.
  • External Feedback: In addition to our own methodology, we also reviewed feedback from external sources. For example, ratings and reviews on TrustPilot, Google, and other independent platforms. We also explored industry publications and annual awards, such as TradingView’s Forex Broker of the Year.

The above methodology enabled us to rate each Australian forex broker and provide a top-9 ranking list based on these metrics.

Forex Brokers Explained

In a nutshell, forex brokers allow you to trade currency pairs. More specifically, you’ll be speculating on the exchange rate between two currencies. For example, if you believe the exchange rate between the Australian and US dollar will increase, you’ll go long on AUD/USD. Or, if you believe it will decrease, you’ll be going short.

Either way, forex brokers sit between traders and the interbank currency markets. According to the Bank for International Settlements, trillions of dollars worth of currencies are exchanged between banks and financial institutions every day. As a retail client, you’ll have access to this marketplace from the comfort of your home.

That being said, some of the best forex brokers in Australia specialize in CFDs (contracts-for-differences). This means that you won’t own the underlying currencies that you’re trading. CFDs simply track interbank currency prices. These prices are based on the liquidity providers that the respective forex broker has access to. This is why market spreads vary from one broker to the next.

In addition to providing market access, forex brokers offer plenty of other tools and services. This often includes proprietary trading software that comes with technical indicators, charting tools, and market insights. Forex brokers also offer leverage, allowing Australian retail clients to trade with up to 1:30 on major pairs. What’s more, forex brokers also take care of deposits and withdrawals, account sign-ups, and client onboarding.

Types of Forex Brokers

There are several types of forex brokers in the Australian market. It’s important to understand how each broker works before opening an account.

Here’s what you need to know:

  • Market Makers: This type of broker creates their own forex markets internally – usually through CFDs. As noted above, the CFD instrument will track interbank currency quotes in real-time. As such, market makers allow you to trade forex without purchasing the underlying currencies. In most cases, market makers are aimed at beginners and come with commission-free accounts. The broker will make money through the spread.
  • ECN Brokers: Electronic communication network (ECN) brokers are aimed at experienced forex traders. They provide access to the interbank market, meaning you’ll be trading directly with other market participants – like banks and financial institutions. ECN forex brokers offer the best spreads in the market, but you’ll pay a commission. This averages $3 per traded lot.
  • STP Brokers: Straight-through processing (STP) brokers offer access to liquidity providers without going through third parties. This usually offers competitive spreads, although with a slight markup on ECN rates. Crucially, STP brokers forward orders straight to liquidity providers, so cannot trade against their clients.

Some of the best forex brokers in Australia offer multiple account types. This often means you can choose from 0% commission trading or ECN/STP spreads.

How to Pick the Best Forex Broker for You

You’ll need to do some solid research when choosing the best forex trading platform in Australia. For example, the types of pairs supported, what spreads and commissions are charged, and whether there’s a minimum deposit requirement in place. Customer service, user-friendliness, trading tools, and other metrics should also be considered.

Read on to discover the most important factors when selecting a forex broker in 2024.

Regulation and Safety

The best forex brokers in Australia are authorized and regulated by ASIC. This is very important, as ASIC is responsible for regulating and overseeing the Australian financial markets. Forex brokers fall within ASIC’s remit, ensuring that Australian retail clients can trade safely.

For example, ASIC-regulated brokers must comply with client money reporting rules. This means keeping client funds in segregated bank accounts and periodically reporting balances to ASIC. Put otherwise, ASIC brokers cannot use your trading capital to fund their operations.

In addition, ASIC brokers must also comply with the regulator’s rules on leverage. According to ASIC licensing guidelines, Australian retail clients are capped at leverage of 1:30 on majors, and 1:20 on minors/exotics. Higher limits are only available to professional clients. This ensures that retail clients avoid trading more than they can afford to lose.

Ultimately, when researching the best forex brokers in Australia, your first port of call should be ASIC regulation. You’ll find its ASIC licensing number on the broker’s website. You can verify this on the ASIC register.

What if my Forex Broker Isn’t Regulated by ASIC?

  • Ideally, your chosen forex broker will be authorized and regulated by ASIC.
  • That said, there might be instances where a forex broker is regulated by a financial body overseas.
  • This isn’t necessarily an issue, but it depends on who the regulator is.
  • For example, if the forex broker is regulated by tier-one bodies like the FCA (UK), CySEC (Cyprus), MAS (Singapore), or FSA (Japan), this is more than acceptable. These are reputable licensing bodies with strict guidelines and rules.
  • However, if the broker is regulated by an offshore body with weak regulatory oversight, this is a red flag.

Types of Forex Pairs

The best forex brokers in Australia support a wide range of pairs. But you’ll need to assess what’s available before proceeding. For example, one of the most traded pairs in Australia is AUD/USD. This is classed as a major pair, so it’s supported by most forex brokers.

However, if you’re looking to trade AUD against other currencies, this will fall in the ‘minor’ or ‘exotic’ class. Examples of minor pairs include AUD/NZD, AUD/CAD, and AUD/CHF. Exotics include AUD/TRY and AUD/MNX.

If you’re a beginner, it’s best to focus on major pairs like AUD/USD. They attract the most liquidity, so you’ll usually get competitive spreads. Majors are also less volatile than minors and exotics, so you’ll witness more stable price movements.

Fees

Fees will have a direct impact on your forex trading profits. So it’s important to understand what your chosen broker charges.

Spreads and Commissions

Forex brokers will either charge a spread, commission, or a combination of both. This will vary depending on your chosen forex broker and the type of account you open.

For example:

  • Beginners are best suited for standard forex accounts. These are offered by user-friendly platforms like XTB, Libertex, and CMC Markets. While you won’t be charged any trading commissions, you’ll pay a market spread. This will be higher when compared to accounts that charge a commission. In most cases, you’ll pay around 1 pip to trade AUD/USD.
  • Experienced traders are best suited for commission-based accounts that offer access to institutional-grade spreads. These are often called a ‘raw’, ‘razor’, or ‘premium’ account. Either way, you can open trade majors like AUD/USD at 0.0 pips. The commission on these account types varies, but averages $3 for every lot traded, per slide. Some forex brokers charge for every $1 million traded, and others per round lot.

How do Forex Trading Commissions Work?

  • If you’re on a commission-based account, this usually means you” have access to industry-leading spreads.
  • However, the commission can be charged in various ways.
  • Some forex brokers charge a commission per traded lot. If the pair is denominated in dollars, one lot equals $100,000.
  • The commission can be quoted as ‘per slide’, meaning you pay it when entering and exiting a trade. It can also be quoted as ‘per round’, meaning this covers both the entry and exit in one fee.
  • Some forex brokers charge for every $1 million traded. You can divide this fee by 10 to get an approximate charge per lot. For instance, Skilling charges $30 per $1 million traded, so that’s about $3 per traded lot.

In addition, overnight funding (also called ‘swap fees’) should be assessed. This is the interest you pay to keep leveraged forex positions open overnight or over the weekend. Most forex brokers display their funding rates for each pair. In some cases, you might get a rebate from the broker, depending on whether you’re long or short.

Non-Trading Fees

Once you’ve covered spreads, commissions, and overnight funding, it’s important to assess non-trading fees. This includes fees on deposits and withdrawals. That said, the best forex brokers in Australia offer fee-free payments, but you should check nonetheless.

Another charge to look for is inactivity fees. This is charged when your forex account is marked as dormant because you haven’t placed a trade for a certain number of days. This can be anywhere from three months to a year. Once the inactivity fee is triggered, your account will be debited each month.

This will continue until you place a trade or your account balance goes to zero. To avoid paying inactivity fees, withdraw your balance in full if you’re not planning on using the forex account.

Trading Tools & Market Analysis

Trading tools help you analyze the forex markets and make informed decisions. Therefore, the top forex brokers in Australia offer a range of tools. This should include a charting platform that aligns with your skill set.

For example, if you’re looking to perform high-level technical analysis, MT4 or MT5 will be more suitable. There are many forex brokers in Australia that support these platforms, including XTB, Libertex, CMC Markets, and Pepperstone. MT4/5 also supports advanced order types and support for algorithmic trading.

We also rate forex brokers that offer market insights. This often includes sentiment bars, showing you whether the markets are long or short on a specific currency pair. Financial news and economic calendars are also useful when analyzing the markets.

Leverage and Margin 

All of the Australia forex brokers discussed on this page support leverage. As per ASIC regulations, your margin requirements are capped depending on the pair:

Minimum margin requirement:

  • Major Forex Pairs: 3.33% (1:30)
  • Minor/Exotic Forex Pairs: 5% (1:20)

Importantly, if you’re searching for forex brokers with high leverage, you’ll only get higher limits if you qualify as a professional client. You can read more about ASIC’s client status requirements here.

How Does Forex Leverage Work?

  • The best forex brokers in Australia require you to meet a minimum trade size of 0.01 lots. One lot averages $100,000, so that’s a minimum of $1,000.
  • If you don’t want to risk $1,000 on a forex trade, you can apply leverage. This means you only need to put up a small portion of the trade size, known as ‘margin’.
  • In Australia, retail clients can trade major forex pairs with leverage of 1:30, meaning a minimum margin requirement of  3.33%.
  • So, the 0.01 lot minimum of $1,000 can be reduced to just $33.33 (3.33% margin on a $1,000 trade). When trading minors or exotics, the minimum margin requirement is 5%, or $50 on a 0.001 lot.

Minimum Deposit 

Check the minimum deposit requirements when choosing a forex broker. This will vary depending on the provider and the account type.

For example, the standard account at Skilling requires a minimum deposit of €100 (approx. $165). But if you open a premium account, this increases to €5,000 (approx. $8,200).

Some forex brokers have very low account minimums. There is no minimum requirement at Pepperstone and XTB.

At IG, the minimum deposit requirement is $450 when using a debit/credit card or PayPal. This might be too high for beginners, as it’s a lot of money to risk.

Demo Account

We only consider forex brokers that offer a risk-free demo account. They usually track the live forex markets, so you can assess how the platform performs. For instance, how quickly orders are executed and filled by the broker.

If there’s often a prolonged delay, this could mean the broker has limited liquidity. Additionally, demo accounts allow you to view the average spreads on your preferred forex pairs. You might find that they’re a lot higher than what the broker advertises on its website.

And of course, demo accounts allow you to practice trade. This includes creating orders, performing technical analysis, and applying leverage.

Mobile App

We also rank forex brokers highly when they offer a mobile app for iOS and Android. This will connect to your main forex account and enables you to trade currencies on the move.

For example, you might need to enter a new position on AUD/USD while you’re away from your desktop device. Or, you might want to close an existing position to lock in your profits. Either way, the best forex brokers in Australia offer a seamless and fully-optimized mobile experience.

Payment Methods

You should also assess what deposit and withdrawal methods the forex broker supports. Many brokers accept debit/credit cards, e-wallets, BPAY, and POLi. Minimum deposits can vary depending on the selected payment method – so check this before proceeding.

For example, we mentioned earlier that IG has a minimum deposit of $450 on debit/credit cards and PayPal. However, the minimum deposit requirement is scrapped if you deposit funds via a local bank transfer.

Customer Service 

If you need assistance on your forex account, you’ll want instant access to a support agent. This means you should choose a forex broker that offers live chat support with acceptable waiting times. Moreover, make sure the support team operates during Australian business hours.

In most cases, support is available 24/5, between Sunday and Friday. This aligns with forex trading sessions across Asia-Pacific, North America, and Europe. Some forex brokers offer live support 24/7, meaning you can obtain assistance over the weekend.

Conclusion

We’ve ranked the top 9 forex brokers in Australia and found that XTB is the best option for beginners. This popular broker allows users to access 48 forex pairs, and does not charge a minimum deposit.

78% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.

References

  1. https://asic.gov.au/
  2. https://asic.gov.au/about-asic/news-centre/find-a-media-release/2022-releases/22-082mr-asic-s-cfd-product-intervention-order-extended-for-five-years/
  3. https://www.fca.org.uk/
  4. https://www.cysec.gov.cy/en-GB/home/
  5. https://www.fscs.org.uk/media/press/2019/apr/higher-protection-limits/
  6. https://www.fscs.org.uk/industry-resources/deposit-protection-banks
  7. https://www.tradingview.com/broker-awards/
  8. https://asic.gov.au/online-services/search-asic-s-registers/information-brokers/
  9. https://treasury.gov.au/sites/default/files/2019-03/c2017-t247556-IG-Markets-Limited.pdf
  10. https://www.bis.org/statistics/rpfx22_fx.htm
  11. https://www.rba.gov.au/statistics/frequency/exchange-rates.html
  12. https://asic.gov.au/about-asic/what-we-do/our-role/other-regulators-and-organisations/the-asic-apra-relationship/
  13. https://asic.gov.au/regulatory-resources/financial-services/complying-with-the-asic-client-money-reporting-rules-2017/
  14. https://asic.gov.au/online-services/search-asic-s-registers/information-brokers/
  15. https://asic.gov.au/regulatory-resources/regulatory-index/financial-services/client-status/

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Kane Pepi
Editor
Kane Pepi
Editor

Kane Pepi is an accomplished financial and cryptocurrency writer who has an extensive portfolio of over 2,000 articles, guides, and market insights. With his expertise in specialized subjects such as asset valuation and analysis, portfolio management, and financial crime prevention, Kane has built a reputation for providing clear explanations of complex financial topics. He holds a Bachelor's Degree in Finance and a Master's Degree in Financial Crime, and is currently pursuing his Doctorate degree, which focuses on investigating the complexities of money laundering in the cryptocurrency and blockchain technology sectors. Kane's wealth of knowledge and experience in the field make…