FP Markets vs IC Markets vs Vantage FX
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|Brokers under review|
|Account Application Time||1 Business Day||1 Business Day||1 Business Day|
|Minimum Account Balance||100 AUD (Lowest)||200 USD||500 USD (Highest)
|Trading Platforms||MT4, MT5, Iress||MT4, MT5, cTrader||MT4, MT5|
|Account Types||Standard, Raw and Iress ViewPoint, Iress Investor and Iress Trader||Standard and Raw Spread Accounts||Standard STP, Raw ECN, Pro ECN
|Range of Markets||10,000+ (Additional Share CFDs via their Iress Platform)||300+ (Additional Futures Products)||500+ (No Futures Products)
|Trading Spreads/Fees||Low Spreads - Commission per side is 3.0 USD per one standard lot||Low Spreads - Commission per side is 3.5 USD per one standard lot||Low Spreads - Commission per side is 3.76 USD per one standard lot
|Execution Speed||36 Milliseconds||40 Milliseconds||30 Milliseconds
|Regulation – Tier 1 Licences||ASIC; CySEC||FSA; AFSL||ASIC; CIMA|
|Market Research and Education||9||7||6|
FP Markets is an Australian-based Forex/CFD provider, founded in 2005. Recently celebrating its 15th anniversary, the company boasts a healthy position in the retail foreign exchange industry and has more than 75,000 active traders.
With headquarters located in the heart of Sydney, FP Markets has grown into a globally-recognised organisation, offering traders access to a broad range of CFD markets.
The company also claims more than 40 international industry awards. Most recently, FP Markets were voted Best FX Broker Australia for 2020, Best Global Value Forex Broker for 2020 & 2019 and Best for Quality of Trade Execution 2019.
Available in several languages, the company’s user-friendly website also demonstrates FP Markets have listened to users, offering vibrant page structure, easy navigation as well as mobile compatibility.
FP Markets is your one-stop destination to trade CFDs across Forex, Shares, Indices, Commodities & Cryptocurrencies. Our range of trading accounts offer you consistently tighter spreads, starting from as low as 0.0 pips. We’ve partnered with leading banking and non-banking financial institutions to provide a deep liquidity pool, offering the best available market prices.
Founded in 2007, IC Markets is an Australian-based Forex/CFD provider, and is, according to the company, the most renowned Forex/CFD provider, offering trading solutions for active day traders and scalpers. We did enquire as to how many active traders IC Markets caters to, but their support team were unsure and there is no information on their website.
Headquartered in Sydney, IC Markets command a global presence, offering a broad range of financial products. When asked about awards, their support service informed us they do not participate in external competitions so have no awards – they stated all their energy goes to their services.
Available in multiple languages, IC Markets also delivers a simple-to-use website with a clear menu bar located at the upper point of the home page. A QuickStart option is on hand for those seeking access to basic functions, such as account selection and trading platforms. Overall, we were impressed with the website’s interface.
Reviews on the ForexPeaceArmy website, however, are not so great: https://www.forexpeacearmy.com/forex-reviews/41/cmcmarkets-forex-brokers.
IC Market’s mission is to create the best and most transparent trading experience for retail and institutional clients alike allowing traders to focus more on their trading. Built by traders for traders, IC Markets is dedicated to offering superior spreads, execution and service.
Established in 2009, Vantage FX is a recognised Forex/CFD provider and has amassed in excess of 50,000 active trading clients.
Headquartered in the Cayman Islands, Vantage FX delivers access to superior trading platforms and a considerable product offering. Therefore, they’re well placed to serve the needs of their traders.
Vantage FX have collected a substantial number of awards, including Best MT4/MT5 Broker & Lowest Trading Costs by Global 100 2020, and Financial Trading Services Provider of the Year – Australia by M&A Today 2020.
Their website is fast and easy to use. Drop-down tabs offer access to the various website features and markets available. Consequently, we have little negative to report on the website’s arrangement.
Vantage Fx was created to help clients pursue their financial goals, we proudly offer transparent access to the Forex market, powerful trading platforms (MT4 and MT5), exceptional execution speed, and award-winning customer service.
Markets and Instruments
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Trading Fees and Spreads
FP Markets do not charge a commission on their Standard account, though a mark-up on the spread by 1 pip is applied.
For their Raw account, specifically Forex or metals, an additional commission is incurred. Commission per side is 3.0 USD per one standard lot, plus a variable spread cost.
Latest data acquired from their server shows EUR/USD spread to be 0.0 pips on average 35.89% of the time from 01-12-2020 to 31-12-2020 (available from their Raw Spread trading accounts only).
According to the FP Markets spread table (variable spreads), their Raw account offers incredibly tight average spreads with EUR/USD and AUD/USD as low as 0.1 pips, and USD/CHF and USD/CAD at 0.3 pips.
The above is associated costs with MetaTrader currencies, not Iress or share CFDs (which incur additional fees/adjustments). Visit for more information.
FP Markets do not apply additional internal fees for deposits or withdrawals. International transaction deposit fees are covered up to 50 USD by FP Markets. For more information on the selection of funding options available, see .
As for withdrawals, there are no fees for credit or debit card options, though international bank wires incur a 10 AUD bank fee. For more information on the different withdrawal options, see https://www.fpmarkets.com/funding/withdraw-funds.
Credit and Debit card funding currencies are: AUD, CAD, CHF, EUR, GBP, HKD, JPY, NZD, SGD, USD.
FP Markets does not charge inactivity or account fees, except for Iress Trader (though this depends on monthly trade volume).
According to the company, IC Markets do not charge commission on Standard accounts. Instead, they informed us they add a mark-up on a variable spread by 1 pip above the rate received from their liquidity providers.
IC Markets’ Raw spread account, according to their website, shows the raw interbank spread received from their liquidity providers. On this account they charge a commission of 3.5 USD per one standard lot (per side) for FX and metals.
IC Markets state https://www.icmarkets.com/sc/en/trading-pricing/spreads spreads can go as low as 0.0 pips on MetaTrader and cTrader Raw Spread platforms. However, their spread table shows average spreads for EUR/USD on their Raw Spread account is 0.1 pips. For GBP/USD 0.4 pips, and AUD/USD at 0.2 pips.
Latest data acquired from an independent third-party provider shows their EUR/USD spread to be 0.0 pips on average 95% of the time from 01-07-2019 to 31-12-2019 (available on their Raw Spread trading accounts only).
IC Markets do not apply any additional internal fees for deposits or withdrawals, though be aware that should a bank transfer take place, a 20 AUD bank transfer fee is incurred for international transactions. For information on the different funding and withdrawal options available at IC Markets see and here.
Credit and Debit card funding currencies are: AUD, USD, JPY, EUR, NZD, SGD, GBP, CAD.
Vantage FX has three main accounts.
Their Standard STP account do not charge commissions, though like FP Markets and IC Markets, there’s a mark-up on the Inter-bank rate received from liquidity providers. Typical spreads for this account are 1.4 pips on EUR/USD, 1.6 pips on GBP/USD and 1.4 pips on AUD/USD.
The Raw ECN account displays raw inter-bank spreads received from liquidity providers. Vantage FX charge a commission on this account: 6 USD per standard lot (round turn).
Traders with a Vantage FX PRO ECN account, according to their website, experience tight spreads and 2.00 USD commission per standard FX lot, per side.
Spreads for both their Raw ECN account and the FX PRO ECN account are similar, with EUR/USD averaging 0.0 pips and GBP/USD from 0.5 pips.
In terms of data acquired from an independent third-party provider or their servers, we were unfortunately unable to retrieve this data.
With reference to funding and deposits, Vantage FX do not charge internal fees. The broker does state, however, that International bank wire transfers may incur fees charged by your financial institution as well as handling fees charged by their financial institution. For more information concerning the different funding and deposit options available, visit https://www.vantagefx.com/clients/accounts/deposit/ and https://www.vantagefx.com/clients/accounts/withdraw/.
Credit and Debit card funding currencies are: AUD, USD, EUR, GBP, NZD, SGD, JPY, CAD.
Trading Platforms – Account Types
FP Markets provides its traders with MetaTrader 4 (MT4) and MetaTrader 5 (MT5), as well as the Iress platform, a comprehensive active trader platform. This broker also has three additional trading platforms, Iress ViewPoint, Iress Investor and Iress Trader—the Iress platform delivers Direct Market Access (DMA).
MT4 and MT5 online WebTrader platforms are also available, enabling traders to trade from their browser of choice with no OS preference (Windows or Mac).
All aforementioned platforms offer mobile trading solutions, both for iOS and Android. Check out their new FP Market’s Trading App: https://www.fpmarkets.com/mobile-trading-app/.
FP Markets offer demo accounts for all platforms, but if left inactive for 30 days the accounts are archived.
FP Markets have two account types for MT4 and MT5: Standard and Raw. For Iress, the broker provides Standard, Platinum and Premier accounts. Islamic Trading accounts are also available, known as swap-free accounts. They do not offer swap-free accounts on Iress—only MT4/MT5.
A relatively new addition to FP Markets is their FP Markets Pro Account. This is in place to ready traders for the new Aussie law changes that come into effect at the end of March 2021. For more information visit .
With respect to social trading applications, the company works with Myfxbook AutoTrade. FP Markets had the following to say regarding AutoTrade:
AutoTrade is a trading system provided through Myfxbook.com. It provides you the opportunity to copy a wide selection of systems directly into your FP Markets MetaTrader 4 (MT4) trading account. Installation is easy, it’s as simple as connecting your live account on FP Markets trading platform to analytical tool Myfxbook and then finding the system you want to copy.
IC Markets work with MT4 and MT5 platforms, as well as cTrader, a specifically designed platform for high-speed execution. cTrader is popular due to its impressive interface, its charting capabilities and technical tools. Users can select 3 chart modes, 6 chart types, 28 timeframes and more than 60 technical indicators. For more information, see: https://www.icmarkets.com/global/en/forex-trading-platform-ctrader/ctrader-windows.
In addition to the above, MT4/5 and cTrader come with mobile trading solutions: iOS and Android https://www.icmarkets.com/global/en/forex-trading-platform-metatrader/iphone.
According to this broker, they offer demo accounts for all platforms. Though like FP Markets, demo accounts expire following 30 days of inactivity.
This broker provides two types of accounts: a Standard account and a Raw Spread account. Both are available on MT4 and MT5. For cTrader, only the Raw Spread account is available.
IC Markets also present Islamic accounts—the swap free option is available on both their Raw Spread and Standard account types on the MT4, MT5 and cTrader platforms.
We searched their social trading products—they do not appear to offer anything in this field.
Vantage FX are relatively limited in terms of trading platforms, providing only MT4 and MT5 solutions. According to their webpage, they state MT5 is a popular choice.
They offer a MetaQuotes WebTrader platform for MT4 and MT5, compatible across Windows, MacOS, and Linux operating systems.
For MT4, Vantage FX offers SmartTrader Tools from FX Blue LLP, a suite of platform add-ons. Also, news headlines stream from FxWire Pro and Reuters.
The Vantage FX app, a recent addition, also affords traders easy access to the above platforms through both iOS and Android devices https://app.vantagefx.com/.
With respect to account types, Vantage FX provide three primary types: Standard STP, Raw ECN and Pro ECN. Vantage FX Islamic accounts are also available.
Vantage FX had the following to say about their Islamic account offering:
Both our Islamic Standard STP and Islamic RAW ECN accounts allow traders of Muslim faith to capitalise on Vantage FX’s institutional grade liquidity, streamed from the world’s largest institutions, direct to MT4.
We were particularly impressed with their demo accounts. They state the following:
Leverage is an aspect of trading that must be understood before a trader contemplates committing funds to a live trading account.
In short, leverage allows traders to gain additional exposure above their account equity. Leverage also governs margin requirements.
Through FP Markets, clients can access leverage up to 1:500 on Forex pairs and precious metals.
This broker provides a reasonably detailed webpage https://www.fpmarkets.com/uk/leverage/ showing leverage rates for specific products, how leverage works and the maximum equity balance.
FP Markets is part of a group of companies, attracting different leverage ratios.
ASIC: First Prudential Markets Pty Ltd
Level 5, Exchange House 10 Bridge St, Sydney NSW 2000 AUSTRALIA
From 29 March 2021, ASIC’s product intervention order will: restrict CFD leverage offered to retail clients to a maximum ratio of: 1:30. But for now, the maximum leverage remains at 1:500.
EU: First Prudential Markets Ltd
109 Griva Digeni, Aigeo Court, 2nd floor, 3101, Limassol, Cyprus
Leverage is a maximum of 1:30 —the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA).
INT: FP Markets LLC
First Floor, First St. Vincent Bank Ltd Building, James Street, Kingstown, St. Vincent and the Grenadines
Leverage offered is a maximum of 1:500.
However, it should be noted that clients from AU and EU can access 500:1 leverage if you’re a professional trader and pass the required tests. For more information, see: https://www.fpmarkets.com/professional-account/.
IC Markets also offer flexible leverage options ranging from 1:1 to 1:500.
We were unable to find any webpage detailing leverage specifics.
IC Markets have 3 entities, regulated by 3 different regulatory authorities and therefore command different leverage ratios.
ASIC: International Capital Markets Pty Ltd
Level 4, 50 Carrington Street, Sydney, NSW 2000, AUSTRALIA
The maximum leverage offered is 1:500, though once ASIC’s product intervention order kicks in from late March, leverage will be restricted to a maximum of 1:30.
IC Markets (EU) Ltd
141 Omonoias Avenue, The Maritime Centre, Block B, 1st floor, 3045 Limassol, Cyprus
Leverage is a maximum of 1:30—the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA).
Raw Trading Ltd (Trading as IC Markets SC)
Eden Plaza, Office 209, Eden Island, Mahe, Seychelles
Maximum leverage (1:500)
Similar to FP Markets, IC Markets also offer the opportunity to trade through a professional account. Should you meet the required tests, there are two options. See the following link for more details: https://www.icmarkets.com/global/en/xp-trader.
ASIC: Vantage Global Prime Pty Ltd,
level 29, 31 Market St, Sydney, New South Wales 2000, AUSTRALIA
The maximum leverage offered is 1:500, yet once ASIC’s product intervention order begins at the end of March, leverage will be restricted to a maximum of 1:30.
FCA: Vantage Global Prime LLP,
7 Bell Yard, London, England, WC2A 2JR
Maximum of 1:30 leverage—applied from 1 August 2019 for CFDs.
Vantage International Group Limited,
Artemis House, 67 Fort St, PO Box 2775, Grand Cayman KY1-1111
Maximum leverage of 1:500.
Vantage Global Limited,
iCount Building, Kumul Highway, Port Vila, Vanuatu
Maximum leverage of 1:500.
The average order execution time between the trade being received, processed and confirmed is 36 milliseconds. However, for December 2020 latency was 38 milliseconds.
The average order execution time between the trade being received, processed and confirmed is 36.5 milliseconds.
Unfortunately, we were unable to retrieve this data. Their support team were also unaware of this which is surprising.
Regulations and Licences
FP Markets is regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), and the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC). They’re also registered in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
As a regulated financial institution, FP Markets must observe strict capital requirements to meet client pay-out obligations and employ sound internal procedures for risk management. They also undergo regular external audits.
We also liked that retail client funds are kept separate from the firm’s capital, held by leading banks.
If you’re interested in finding out more, consider visiting: https://www.fpmarkets.com/regulation/.
According to their website, IC Markets comply with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) and Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC). IC Markets are also authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority (FSA) of Seychelles.
Like FP Markets, IC Markets hold client funds in segregated accounts at top-tier banking institutions. IC Markets entities also engages an external independent auditor to ensure compliance with regulatory responsibilities.
For more information, see: https://www.icmarkets.com/global/en/company/regulation.
As per their website (we found this at the bottom of their Regulation webpage—it was unfortunately not clear in the main body of text), Vantage FX are regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority (CIMA), the VFSC under Section 4 of the Financial Dealers Licensing Act, and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
Client funds are held in segregated accounts. We were unable to find anything on their website relating to audits and their customer support team were unable to provide additional information regarding this.
For more information regarding their regulation policies, visit: https://www.vantagefx.com/about-us/legal-licensing/regulation/.
Regulations and Licenses
Contact – Customer Service
For the purpose of this broker comparison, we contacted each broker over a number of weeks to test their average response time and product knowledge.
Market Research – Educational Content
RANGE OF MARKETS:
A dedicated Trader’s Hub is available with FP Markets. In-depth daily technical and fundamental analysis can be accessed for free via separate pages, covered by industry experts. This provider also offers an in-depth Weekly Technical Market Insight, including comprehensive analysis of the US dollar index.
What’s also particularly impressive is their Black and White Technical report which looks at detailed pattern structure in various markets—this is a weekly report. Also weekly, FP Markets provides Currency Point, a video- based review of the week, presented by industry expert Evan Lucas.
As for educational material, FP Markets provide in-depth eBooks, video tutorials, a trading glossary and a newsletter sign-up. They also have a Trading Knowledge section, which delivers a number of fresh informative articles each month, from things like how to use MT4 and how to use technical analysis tools.
FP Markets hold regular webinars on trending subjects.
RANGE OF MARKETS:
IC Markets offer an Information Hub.
In-depth daily (and weekly) technical and fundamental analysis can be accessed for free with this broker.
Regarding educational content, IC Markets offer 101 articles for FX trading, Technical and Fundamental analysis, risk management, trading psychology and trading plan. The Forex trading 101 section is regularly updated with detailed articles.
They recently begun offering webinars, though this has only been over the past couple of months as far as we can see.
Their presence on social media, in particular Twitter and Telegram, is relatively impressive.
IC Markets provide traders free access to Autochartist as well as Trading Central, both on live and demo accounts.
RANGE OF MARKETS:
Vantage FX have a basic free education offering—explaining what the Forex market is and the methods traders use to analyse its movement. This, as far as we could see, is done through video.
They also have a Pro Trader Video Course. To access this resource, you must fund a live account with 1,000 USD or more. Obviously, we cannot comment on the detail, though there are 130+ video tutorials, including advanced trading strategies, chart patterns and candle patterns.
In addition to the above, an economic calendar is available.
We spoke with support regarding their education to confirm the above. They also confirmed the company does not offer market analysis.
It can take up to 1 business day for your account to be approved.
Demo account access is available immediately.
FP Markets need proof of ID and proof of residence. As ID they accept a passport, National ID card or driving license. As proof of residence they accept a utility bill or a bank statement issued in the past 6 months.
For corporate accounts, FP Markets require proof of identity and proof of residence for all directors and beneficial owners. They also require the certificate of incorporation and memorandum of articles of association. If the beneficial owner is another entity, they will also require additional documentation. You can reach out to their onboarding team (email@example.com) for more information.
The minimum deposit for an MT4/5 account is 100 AUD, or currency equivalent. The minimum deposit for the Iress platform is 1,000 AUD, or currency equivalent.
Restricted countries, according to FP Markets, are the US, Japan and New Zealand, or residents from any other country or jurisdiction where such distribution or use would be contrary to those local laws or regulations.
Account verification usually takes a few minutes but can take a couple of hours in some cases, according to their website.
Demo account access is available immediately.
In terms of documentation, for live trading accounts, IC Markets require an ID document (National ID card, passport or driving license) and recent proof of residence (utility bill or bank statement) that shows your name and address. For corporate accounts, they state the following is required:
For more information, check out: https://www.icmarkets.com/sc/en/company/aml-policy.
IC Markets allows clients to open an account with as little as 200 USD or currency equivalent.
US Japan and New Zealand are listed as restricted countries. For other countries, see this link: https://www.icmarkets.com/sc/en/company/aml-policy.
According to their support team, it can take, as long as the required documents are correct, as little as five minutes to open an account. If not, it usually takes one business day.
Demo account access is available immediately.
ID and proof of address for retail accounts.
For corporate accounts, their support service requested us to email Support@vantagefx.com and would unfortunately not comment on the required documents.
The minimum deposit for their Standard STP account is 200 USD; for their Raw ECN account it is 500 USD and their PRO ECN account requires a 20,000 USD account balance.
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