Best ECN Brokers

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Trading Experience
Trading Conditions
Account Types
Trading Platforms
Regulators
Minimum Deposit
USD 10
TRADING INSTRUMENTS
  • Commodities
  • Cryptocurrencies
  • Forex
  • Indicies
  • Metals
  • Equities
TYPE OF BROKER

ECN/STP

REGULATED BY
CySEC CySEC
FCA FCA
FSCA FSCA
TRADING PLATFORMS
  • MetaTrader4
  • MetaTrader5
  • WebTrader
DEPOSIT METHODS
  • Bank Transfer
  • Visa
  • Mastercard
  • Maestro
  • Skrill
  • Neteller
  • Bitcoin
  • Unionpay
Trading Conditions
  • Max. Leverage : Flexible
  • Min. Spread : 0.1 pips
  • Currency Pairs : 59
Account Spread From Commission Execution Min. Deposit
Cent Account 1.5 pips None Instant USD 10 Account Details
Standard Account 1.3 pips None Instant USD 100 Account Details
ECN Zero Account 1.5 pips None Market USD 200 Account Details
ECN Account 0.1 pips $2.00 Market USD 500 Account Details
FXTM Pro Account 0.0 pips None Market USD 25000 Account Details
TRADING INSTRUMENTS
  • Commodities
  • Cryptocurrencies
  • Forex
  • Indicies
  • Metals
  • Equities
TRADING PLATFORMS
  • MetaTrader4
  • MetaTrader5
  • WebTrader
DEPOSIT METHODS
  • Bank Transfer
  • Visa
  • Mastercard
  • Maestro
  • Skrill
  • Neteller
  • Bitcoin
  • Unionpay
Trading Conditions
  • Max. Leverage : Flexible
  • Min. Spread : 0.1 pips
  • Currency Pairs : 59
Minimum Deposit
USD 5
TRADING INSTRUMENTS
  • Commodities
  • Cryptocurrencies
  • Forex
  • Indicies
  • Metals
  • Equities
  • Energies
  • Bonds
TYPE OF BROKER

ECN/STP

REGULATED BY
CySEC CySEC
FCA FCA
FSCA FSCA
DFSA DFSA
FSC FSC
TRADING PLATFORMS
  • MetaTrader4
  • WebTrader
DEPOSIT METHODS
  • Bank Transfer
  • Visa
  • Mastercard
  • Skrill
  • Neteller
  • Bitcoin
  • Unionpay
Trading Conditions
  • Max. Leverage : 500:1
  • Min. Spread : 0.0 pips
  • Currency Pairs : 51
Account Spread From Commission Execution Min. Deposit
Micro 1.0 pips None Market USD 5 Account Details
Premium 1.0 pips None Market USD 100 Account Details
Auto 1.0 pips None Market USD 200 Account Details
Zero 0.0 pips $3.00 Market USD 200 Account Details
HFCopy 1.0 pips Mone Market USD 300 Account Details
TRADING INSTRUMENTS
  • Commodities
  • Cryptocurrencies
  • Forex
  • Indicies
  • Metals
  • Equities
  • Energies
  • Bonds
TRADING PLATFORMS
  • MetaTrader4
  • WebTrader
DEPOSIT METHODS
  • Bank Transfer
  • Visa
  • Mastercard
  • Skrill
  • Neteller
  • Bitcoin
  • Unionpay
Trading Conditions
  • Max. Leverage : 500:1
  • Min. Spread : 0.0 pips
  • Currency Pairs : 51
Minimum Deposit
USD 100
TRADING INSTRUMENTS
  • Commodities
  • Cryptocurrencies
  • Forex
  • Indicies
  • Equities
TYPE OF BROKER

Market Maker & ECN

REGULATED BY
CySEC CySEC
FCA FCA
ASIC ASIC
FSCA FSCA
TRADING PLATFORMS
  • MetaTrader4
  • WebTrader
DEPOSIT METHODS
  • Bank Transfer
  • Visa
  • Mastercard
  • Maestro
  • Skrill
  • Neteller
  • Unionpay
  • Fasapay
Trading Conditions
  • Max. Leverage : 500:1
  • Min. Spread : 1.0 pips
  • Currency Pairs : 85
Account Spread From Commission Execution Min. Deposit
Live Fixed Spread 2.2 pips None Instant USD 100 Account Details
Live Floating Spread 1.1 pips None Instant USD 100 Account Details
Live Zero Spread 0.0 pips $18 Instant USD 500 Account Details
STP/ECN No Commission 1.7 pips None ECN/STP USD 500 Account Details
STP/ECN Zero Spread 0.0 pips $7.50 ECN/STP USD 500 Account Details
TRADING INSTRUMENTS
  • Commodities
  • Cryptocurrencies
  • Forex
  • Indicies
  • Equities
TRADING PLATFORMS
  • MetaTrader4
  • WebTrader
DEPOSIT METHODS
  • Bank Transfer
  • Visa
  • Mastercard
  • Maestro
  • Skrill
  • Neteller
  • Unionpay
  • Fasapay
Trading Conditions
  • Max. Leverage : 500:1
  • Min. Spread : 1.0 pips
  • Currency Pairs : 85

All Forex Brokers in South Africa

What is an ECN Broker?

Brokers come in two distinct types – dealing desks (also known as market makers) and non-dealing desks (the most common of which are ECN).

To understand what an ECN broker is we first need to understand what a dealing desk is and how the two differ.

Dealing desks are often called market makers because they are the market – when a dealing desk prices a trade that you see on your platform, you are seeing what they have decided is a fair price, given the current market conditions.

If you agree to this price and decide to make the trade offered, you are dealing with the broker, not with the wider market, and they will be the counterparty to your trade. In essence, they are betting against you – if you lose money on that trade, the broker is going to profit.

There is an obvious conflict of interest inherent in this business model and, for this reason, some traders prefer to have a neutral party as a conduit for their trading.

Dealing desks tend to not take a commission on trades, instead of making money through the spread and their trading platforms tend to be relatively easy to learn. Markets on a dealing desk platform will also be less volatile – a disadvantage to scalpers – and slippage (a change in price between confirming a trade and the trade being posted) can be an issue.

But how are ECN brokers different?

The clue is the name: ECN (Electronic Communication Network). ECNs are so called because they rely on a network of market participants (usually large lenders such as banks) to serve as counterparties to Forex trades. When you post a trade with a true ECN they will find a third-party to take the other side of your trade, removing the conflict of interest present with a market maker.

ECN brokers will charge a commission for this service (as they cannot profit from your trade), but spreads tend to be much tighter than with market makers. At times of market volatility on major currency pairs, you will often see spreads disappear entirely, down to zero pips. Another thing to remember with pure ECN brokers is that you may have delays to trade execution, resulting in requotes and slippage – this can be particularly difficult for scalpers in a high-volume market.

Another acronym you will often see in combination with ECN is STP (as in ECN/STP). STP is a method of the transaction – with STP your order is sent directly to the counterparty through the Financial Information Exchange (FIX) protocol. The FIX protocol decreases trade execution time, reduces slippage and ensures that traders get the best available pricing.

Conclusion

So, while ECN brokers do not have the inherent conflict of interest present with market makers, there are larger trading risks involved and the commission will always be charged on your trades. You will also often find that true ECN accounts will require a higher minimum deposit – putting them out of reach of a lot of new traders.

Are ECN brokers objectively better than market maker? I don’t believe this to be the case. All those we work with are trustworthy and well-regulated and broker choice is always down to personal preference. Whether you go with an ECN broker or a market maker, if you choose one from our list of the best in South Africa you will be in good hands.

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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.