AuthorBy Jeffrey CammackAuthor InformationUpdated: November7, 2020

We have checked out all the cryptocurrency brokers in South Africa using our rigorous review process. While traders may be tempted by brokers who offer a wide range of cryptocurrency pairs, the traditional metrics of trust, platform choice and trading conditions should be applied when judging cryptocurrency brokers.

Unfortunately, most cryptocurrency CFD brokers are unregulated, and you may be exposing yourself to fraud by working with them.  These are the best regulated cryptocurrency brokers in South Africa for 2020.

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Here are the best cryptocurrency & bitcoin brokers

Last updated on7 Nov 2020
Updated7 Nov 2020
by Editorial Director Jeffrey Cammackby Jeffrey Cammack
Jeffrey Cammack
All Brokers Regulated
All Brokers Regulated
by Trusted Authoritiesby Trusted Authorities
Sweden
1
Plus500
Min. Deposit
ZAR 1500
3.693.69
Min. Spread
0 pips
Crypto Pairs
9
Deposit & Withdrawal Methods
1110.503.69/ 5
AlertAccepts South African Clients. Plus500 does not publish their spreads, and thus a cost of trading can not be established. Max leverage 300:1. Islamic account available. Only Plus500 proprietary trading platform supported. Plus500 is regulated by FCA, CySEC, ASIC, and MAS.All information presented is verified as of the date of the review.Most retail CFD accounts lose money. Your capital is at risk.
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Founded in 2008, and with over 300,000 active customers, Plus500 is a leading CFD provider in the CFD trading industry mainly due to the simplicity of their trading platform, and the appealing trading conditions. Educational and analytical material are limited, the Plus500 trading platform very easy to use and reliability and security are absolute priorities.  Note that the Plus500 is not a suitable choice for beginners/inexperienced traders. 

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Wide range of assets
Cons
  • Limited education
  • Limited account options
Read More About Plus500
2
FXTM
Min. Deposit
USD 10
4.234.23
Min. Spread
0.10 pips
Crypto Pairs
3
Deposit & Withdrawal Methods
11110.54.23/ 5
AlertAccepts South African Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 1.90 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage Flexible. Islamic account available. MT4 & MT5 platforms supported. Leverage offered can vary depending on country of residence, and your trading knowledge and experience. FXTM is regulated by CySEC, FCA, FSCA, and the FSC.
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FXTM is regulated by the FCA, CySEC and the FSCA in South Africa and the educational material offered is first-class. By keeping the focus on beginners looking for reasonable trading conditions, the FXTM team of educators and analysts have succeeded in creating a welcoming environment for new traders. Additionally, FXTM are one of the few brokers with 24/7 support, allowing new traders to get set up on weekends or holidays.

For the absolute beginner, FXTM has a great deal of training material to help new traders get started. Materials include articles, videos, webinars and a searchable glossary of new vocabulary. This is an excellent resource and many hours can be spent covering the basics of Forex Trading. There is an additional set of videos that cover analysis topics, and more detail on chart reading techniques.

FXTM has an open “Daily Market Analysis” section on their website where research analysts post bulletins that connect daily news items with analysis and actionable trading ideas. This can be combined with other sources to achieve a more comprehensive view of global events and the trading opportunities they represent.

The Standard Account has a minimum deposit of 100 USD and spreads start at 1.3 pips. FXTM also offers a Cent Account where the minimum deposit if only 10 USD but the spreads will be wider. If you can afford it, I would recommend starting with the Standard Account.

Pros
  • Good for beginners
  • Excellent education
  • Well regulated
  • Low minimum deposit
Cons
  • Expensive withdrawals
Read More About FXTM
3
eToro
Min. Deposit
USD 200
3.333.33
Min. Spread
1 pips
Crypto Pairs
16
Deposit & Withdrawal Methods
1110.503.33/ 5
AlertAccepts South African Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 1.0 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 400:1. Islamic account available. eToro proprietary trading platform support. eToro is regulated by CySEC, FCA, and ASIC. 71%.
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Founded in 2007, eToro are renowned as founders of the social trading methodology and its platform has won multiple awards for innovation.

The social component, which sits at the centre of the platform, seeks to inspire and encourage traders. eToro also believes that making its community of 6 million traders integral to the platform creates transparency and makes the overall experience more enjoyable. As cryptocurrencies have become more popular, eToro has introduced a wide variety of cryptocurrency CFDs to traders.

eToro has succeeded in making trading more accessible to the beginner trader, but only by completely upending the traditional broker space.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Good for beginners
  • Innovative trading tools
Cons
  • Limited education
  • Wide spreads
Read More About eToro
4
AvaTrade
Min. Deposit
USD 100
4.184.18
Min. Spread
0.90 pips
Crypto Pairs
18
Deposit & Withdrawal Methods
11110.54.18/ 5
AlertAccepts South African Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.90 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 400:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & MT5 platforms supported. AvaTrade Group regulated by ASIC, FSCA, B.V.I FSC & FSA.
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With over 200,000 active traders around the globe, on both the MetaTrader 4 and AvaGo platforms, and the award for Best Trade Execution 2016 by the African Finance Expo, AvaTrade is a good partner for all types of trader. AvaTrade has built its reputation on being a client-focused, dependable broker, and continues to add to that reputation with the recent addition of AvaProtect to its product lineup.

With great trading conditions across Forex, commodities, cryptocurrencies, ETFs, bonds, and equities and boasting FSCA and ASIC regulation, AvaTrade is competitive with some of the best brokers in the world.

Pros
  • Good for beginners
  • Well regulated
  • Low minimum deposit
Cons
  • Dealing desk
  • Limited education
Read More About AvaTrade
5
Admiral Markets
Min. Deposit
USD 100
4.184.18
Min. Spread
0.10 pips
Crypto Pairs
32
Deposit & Withdrawal Methods
11110.54.18/ 5
AlertAccepts South African Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.10 pips with 6 USD commission round turn on the trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 500:1. Islamic account available. MT4, MT5 & MT4 Supreme Edition platforms supported. Admiral Markets is regulated by ASIC, CySEC, and the FCA.
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Founded in 2001, Admiral Markets is renowned for its excellent education, industry leadership and wide range of tradeable instruments. Its industry leadership extends to platform support, where it has teamed up with MetaTrader to create Supreme Editions for MT4 and MT5, adding a range of practical tools to enhance the base platforms. 

All Admiral Markets accounts feature market execution, low minimum deposits and competitive spreads – and the company has one of the best cryptocurrency offerings on the market, with 30+ crypto pairs and cross pairs to trade; in addition, Admiral Markets have not just one, but two complete Forex courses for beginners.

A global presence, a progressive approach to knowledge sharing and competitive trading conditions have attracted both beginner and experienced traders to the Admiral Markets brand.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Excellent education
  • Wide range of assets
Cons
  • Expensive withdrawals
Read More About Admiral Markets
6
MarketsX
Min. Deposit
ZAR 2500
4.394.39
Min. Spread
0.60 pips
Crypto Pairs
6
Deposit & Withdrawal Methods
11110.54.39/ 5
AlertAccepts South African Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.60 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 300:1. Islamic account available. MT4 & MT5 platforms supported. MarketsX is regulated by CySEC, ASIC, and the FSCA.
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Marketsx is a premium trading platform. It’s operated by Markets.com and offers traders fast, low-cost trading on over 2,200 financial instruments. Marketsx provides CFD trading on global stock, forex, commodity, indices, cryptocurrency, ETF and bond markets. Clients in the UK can also use spread bets on applicable instruments.

The proprietary Marketx trading platform is packed full of features and trading tools and is optimised for lightning execution. As well as in-depth charting and asset comparison tools, Marketsx also gives traders a wealth of decision-supporting data with sentiment tools, tutorials, and regular live-streamed, expert analysis.

Owned by Tradetech Markets (South Africa) Pty Ltd., a subsidiary of Playtech PLC, Markets.com (South Africa) SA is one of the best-recognised Forex brands.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Tight spreads
  • Wide range of assets
  • Fast and free withdrawals
Cons
  • High minimum deposit
Read More About MarketsX
7
IC Markets
Min. Deposit
USD 200
4.264.26
Min. Spread
0.10 pips
Crypto Pairs
10
Deposit & Withdrawal Methods
11110.54.26/ 5
AlertAccepts South African Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.00 pips with 7 USD commission round turn on the trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 500:1. Islamic account available. MT4, MT5 & cTrader platforms supported. IC Markets is regulated by CySEC and ASIC.
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A hugely respected ECN broker, IC Markets has invested heavily to provide traders with the lowest spreads and fastest execution speeds possible – and has seen huge success as a result. ASIC and CySEC regulated and with support for MT4, MT5 and cTrader, this broker is serious about providing the best possible trading environment for its client base. 

Headquartered in downtown Sydney, IC Markets represents the best of the Australian Forex industry; beginner traders will welcome IC Markets’ simple account structure and responsive and informed customer service; the company understands customer retention involves a combination of tight spreads, cutting edge technology, fast trade execution and specialised support. 

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Tight spreads
  • Wide range of assets
  • Great platform choice
Cons
  • High minimum deposit
  • Limited market analysis
Read More About IC Markets
8
FxPrimus
Min. Deposit
USD 500
3.393.39
Min. Spread
0.10 pips
Crypto Pairs
7
Deposit & Withdrawal Methods
1110.503.39/ 5
AlertAccepts South African Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.30 pips with 10 USD commission round turn on the trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 1000:1. Islamic account available. MT4 platform support. FxPrimus is regulated by the CySEC, FSCA, and the VFSC.
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FXPRIMUS is an STP market maker founded in 2009 and fully regulated in South Africa since 2018. Globally acclaimed for offering one of the fastest and most secure online trading environments, the company has a strong focus on customer satisfaction with free deposits and withdrawals and negative balance protection for all clients.

A multi-asset broker, FXPRIMUS offers multiple tradeable instruments including Forex, Commodities, Energies, Indices on the MT4 platform. Both Standard and ECN account types are available, with spreads starting at 1.5 pips on the standard account and 0.3 pips on the ECN account.

Pros
  • Tight spreads
  • Wide range of assets
  • Fast and free withdrawals
  • Great customer support
Cons
  • High commission
  • Limited education
  • Limited market analysis
Read More About FxPrimus
9
IG Markets
Min. Deposit
USD 250
4.634.63
Min. Spread
0.60 pips
Crypto Pairs
8
Deposit & Withdrawal Methods
11110.54.63/ 5
AlertAccepts South African Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.6 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 200:1. Islamic account available. MT4, ProRealTime and L2 Dealer platforms supported. IG Markets Group is regulated by FCA, ASIC, and the FSCA.
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As the world’s largest financial spread betting and CFD broker by revenue, and winning highly-acclaimed awards such as Broker of the Year 2018 (UK Forex Awards) and Best CFD Provider 2017 (Investment and Wealth Management Awards), IG Markets is an attractive choice for both the beginner and the seasoned trader.

With regulation from the FCA, ASIC, and the FSCA, award-winning technology and over 195,000 clients worldwide IG Markets is a principal player in the CFD, Forex trading and spread betting industries.

Pros
  • Well regulated
  • Tight spreads
  • Great platform choice
  • Excellent education
  • Excellent market analysis
Cons
  • High minimum deposit
Read More About IG Markets
10
IQ Option
Min. Deposit
USD 10
3.593.59
Min. Spread
0.90 pips
Crypto Pairs
12
Deposit & Withdrawal Methods
1110.503.59/ 5
AlertAccepts South African Clients. Average spread EUR/USD 0.90 pips on trading account with lowest minimum deposit. Max leverage 1000:1. Islamic account available. IQ Option platform supported. IQ Option is regulated by CySEC
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Regulated by major regulatory organisations including CySEC, IQ Option focuses on making CFD and Options trading accessible and exciting for traders. An award-winning browser-based platform and connected apps; this accessible software changed the way options trading is done online.

With accessible accounts with 10 USD minimum deposits, video education material, and 24/7 customer service, any Forex trader who is also interested in binary options trading on the same account, should consider IQ Option as their brokerage.

Pros
  • Low minimum deposit
  • Wide range of assets
Cons
  • Unpublished spreads
  • Expensive withdrawals
  • Limited education
  • Limited market analysis
Read More About IQ Option

How Does Cryptocurrency Trading Work?

Cryptocurrency trading works in much the same way as classic Forex trading with three significant differences. Due to the extreme volatility of the cryptocurrency market:

  • Leverage is much lower (the maximum is often 1:10 or similar) and
  • Spreads are much wider (often in the range of 25-35 pips).

This is to protect brokers and traders from the wild swings often prevalent in the crypto market.

Finally:

  • The cryptocurrency market operates 24/7, as it does not rely on large financial institutions for liquidity.

Traders and brokers both know there is money to be made on cryptocurrencies, so brokers have adapted their trading platforms and customer support hours to provide a genuine crypto CFD trading experience.

What is a cryptocurrency?

A cryptocurrency is a digital currency with no asset or national backing. They can be used to make payments or make investments and are more commonly accepted all the time.

Cryptocurrencies are ‘mined’ using computers, once mined the new unit of currency is added to a blockchain – a public ledger of transactions. This is very different from traditional currencies, which are minted by a federal bank.

Cryptocurrencies have a theoretical limit on the number of coins that can be created. As long as there is a demand, this supply limit allows them to hold their value, and they can be viewed as an investment vehicle.

There are dozens of cryptocurrencies, but the most liquid and widespread are Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Ethereum, Ripple, and EOS.

What is Blockchain?

Blockchain is a time-stamped digital record used to keep track of data. Much like a traditional notary, blockchain eliminates any possibility of backdating or altering digital data. With the introduction of digital tender, blockchain is used as a distributed ledger containing a register of transactions. Every block in a blockchain includes data, a unique hash (much like a fingerprint) and the hash of the previous block in the blockchain.

The data in a Bitcoin block stores details about transactions such as amount, sender and receiver. The hash identifies a block and its contents and is always unique.

Altering the information in a block will also alter the hash of the block, thus automatically making all the following blocks invalid as they no longer store a valid hash of the previous block.

Additionally, blockchain has a mechanism that slows down the creation of new blocks called “proof-of-work” to prevent tampering with data inside the blocks.

The ledger (transactions) are re-calculated every ten minutes by the machine with the greatest processing power. All the other computers on the network check and verify that the transactions entered are valid once the primary machine has completed the calculation.

If more than 50% of the computers agree on the outcome of the calculation, the new block of transactions gets included in the blockchain.

What is mining?

Mining is the process of adding new tender to the blockchain, in effect generating new tender. Mining uses high-powered computers, often powerful GPUs (graphic processing units), to find and verify the resulting coin, which is placed in a wallet associated with the computer.

What are Wallets?

A digital wallet allows a user to store coins and enables the movement of funds by the owner. An account is often referred to as an address or key, where the key is used to track the ownership of a cryptocurrency.

A wallet can also be a program or a physical device, some wallets are geared for a single digital currency or a few select digital currencies.

Trading Crypto CFDs

If your goal is to purchase these assets for an investment, you can buy them on digital currency exchanges, such as Coinbase. However, cryptocurrency pairs can be traded like any other Forex pair.

Like standard Forex CFDs, the value of a cryptocurrency CFD mirrors the currencies it follows. Each transaction is speculation on the value of the currency increasing or decreasing.

There are several benefits to trading these currencies:

  • You can use leverage
  • You can trade them at most Forex brokers
  • You don’t ever own the asset and only speculate on currency value changes

As mentioned previously, cryptocurrencies can experience extreme volatility. Bitcoin has seen a 250% increase in value against the USD over the last five months but has also experienced frequent crashes of over 20% in the same period. This is in stark contrast to the traditional fiat currencies where historical volatility is below 3%.

These currencies have similar traits to traditional ones. If you plan on trading these assets over the short-term, you should look for rapid changes in sentiment, as this will help predict future price movement. If you plan on trading over the long-term, watch for new information to affect value significantly.

Like traditional Forex trading, you can use your trading platform to execute trades, perform analysis and follow the news. Most brokers that offer cryptocurrency CFDs offer CFDs on other assets, which provides for a seamless transition if you are already accustomed to trading this asset class.

What Cryptocurrencies Should You Trade?

  • Bitcoin – The oldest and most liquid of them all is Bitcoin (BTC). It was established in 2009 by an unknown person using the name Satoshi NakamotoNakamoto to be used as a payment mechanism. In trading, BTC is commonly paired with fiat currencies such as the USD and EUR.
  • Ethereum – This is an open-source platform that uses blockchain technology. The critical function is smart contract programming. Ethereum is very liquid and experiences the same volatility expected from this market. The system went live on July 30, 2015, with 72-million coins.
  • Litecoin – This coin was built using the same open-source software that was used to create Bitcoin but uses a different license to make it more flexible. Litecoin was initially referred to as an alternative coin or altcoin and was created in October 2011.
  • Ripple – Founded as a payment system and currency exchange network by Ripple Labs Inc. The system was established in 2012, and Ripple can be traded versus several fiat currencies as well as other coins.
  • EOS– EOS operates as a smart contract platform and decentralised operating system. The system is fast and can execute millions of transactions in seconds. You can trade EOS against other coins and fiat currencies.

How are cryptocurrencies different from regular currencies?

Over the last decade the supply of money has grown exponentially; this has been the most significant growth in the supply of money in history. Central banks control our money system, and all currencies are government fiat currencies.

The issue with fiat currencies is that the more of money that is in a system, the more prices will rise. This increase in inflation will also cause the value of the currency to fall.

Both BTC and gold are similar in that there is a finite supply; this is in contrast to fiat currencies, where central banks can print more tender whenever they please. As such, there is a predictable rate at which Bitcoin is mined, like the predictable rate at which gold is added to the market.

How many Cryptocurrencies are there?

On July 3rd 2017, there were 34 – by June 5th 2019, there were 2216. The table below shows the top 10 cryptocurrencies by market capitalisation (as of September 6, 2019).

Source: coinmarketcap.com

Why Trade Bitcoin & Digital Coins?

These assets are known for their high volatility, thus creating more trading opportunities. Forex volatility has fallen to near record lows in the past ten years, often to less than 1%, while Bitcoin has had extreme volatility readings of 30% with an average volatility reading of 10%.

More volatility means more trading opportunities and larger profits, but at the same time, it also increases the sizes of the losses. Because of this volatility, you will find that brokers offer much lower maximum leverage for these pairs.

Analysing these pairs is easier because you don’t have fundamental data like GDP, CPI Inflation, unemployment rate or the business cycle to consider. Digital currencies are not influenced by fundamental macro data which will make the price action much easier to be read.

What To Look for in a Broker?

Find a well-regulated broker that provides a robust trading platform, where you can perform technical analysis with ease, execute trades quickly, with a wide choice of currency pairs.

You want to be able to buy and sell both fiat currencies, such as the dollar, yen, pound, and euro as well as versus other coins and commodities. In addition to a downloadable or web-based platform, you should also look for a broker with a mobile app.

Your broker should offer a margin account, allowing at least 10:1 leverage on most pairs, an education section to help you trade this fast-moving market, with trading conditions that won’t eat up too much of your profits.

Finally, find a brokerage with a demo account which will let you test drive the platform, and work out any kinks before you risk your capital.

References

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Trading Forex and CFDs is not suitable for all investors and comes with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 75-90% of retail investors lose money trading these products. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

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