AvaTrade is one of the top contract for difference (CFD) and forex brokers around. It provides four trading platforms, which should suit traders at all skill levels, plus the assurance of regulation by several reputable regulators (eight total). With offices in 11 countries, it’s likely to have a local presence near you. For the new trader, AvaTrade offers good educational material, while the experienced trader can take advantage of its sophisticated options trading platform, a rarity in the industry.
Both should benefit from its wide array of trading tools. Its mobile app, AvaTradeGO, is noted for its risk management tools. It offers more opportunities for social trading than some of its rivals, including its popular social trading system, AvaSocial, for traders outside of Europe.
The company’s trading costs and minimum deposit aren’t the lowest in the industry, but they’re within the normal range.
Yes, it’s a well-respected FX and CFD broker with a good reputation in the market. It’s regulated by a number of regulators, including the top-tier Irish Central Bank in its home market, Ireland.
It offers a wide range of tradeable assets, most everything the average trader could want, including options, which most brokers don’t offer. Its fees aren’t the lowest in the market but they’re by no means the highest, either – more around market average. It offers a variety of trading platforms, including its well-received AvaTradeGO, which is known for its excellent risk management tools. It also offers AvaSocial, a popular social trading community through which you can discuss your trades and commiserate with those who’ve lost money trading (which I’m sure will never happen to you, fortunately). The educational offering is decent as well. The company has offices in 11 countries and good customer support. It also offers a unique product, AvaProtect, that they say “allows you to get your money back on losing trades”! (See Is AvaTrade Safe? below.)
AvaTrade is a forex and contract for difference (CFD) broker. It trades forex as well as CFDs on stocks, indices, ETFs, commodities, cryptocurrencies, and a couple of bonds. It also offers options trading, something that most retail FX brokers don’t offer.
The firm was founded in Ireland in 2006 by three Israeli entrepreneurs, making it one of the earlier online forex brokers. It’s headquartered in Dublin, has offices in 11 countries, and is regulated in eight jurisdictions, an unusually large number. It says it has over 400k traders who place more than 2mn trades a month valued at some $70bn. It is not publicly quoted and so no audited financial statements are available.
AvaTrade is a market-maker, with its own in-house dealing desk. That means when you buy, AvaTrade is the seller, and when you buy, AvaTrade is the buyer. This is normal for CFD brokers but it does set up an inherent conflict of interest: your gain is their loss and vice-versa.
Clients can trade through the firm’s proprietary trading platform as well as the popular MT4 and MT5. Copy trading is available through outside connections.
As far as we can tell, yes. It’s regulated by no fewer than eight, possibly nine, regulatory agencies (see below). It’s been in business for 17 years, which puts it among the better-established online brokers.
Being regulated in the EU, the firm has to segregate its client funds from its operational funds in its banks, meaning again in the unlikely event that it does go bust, the clients funds won’t go down the drain with it. Furthermore, it offers negative balance protection, meaning traders can’t lose more than their initial deposit. This can be a problem in cases where slippage doesn’t allow people to get out of a trade in a fast-moving market. These are EU requirements and by no means unique to AvaTrade.
They also have this unique product, AvaProtect, that they say “allows you to get your money back on losing trades”! You pay a fee when you open your position and if you lose money on the trade during a chosen time frame they’ll reimburse you in cash up to $1mn. You get reimbursed regardless of whether you close out the trade, you get stopped out, or even if the trade is still open with unrealized losses. (I don’t know specifically how they do it, but my guess is that AvaTrade uses the premium that you pay to buy an option that will cover your losses if necessary.)
Does a bear do various things in the woods? Yes indeed. AvaTrade is among the more highly regulated brokers. It’s regulated by no fewer than eight, possibly nine, regulatory agencies (although most of them are Tier II), namely: three Tier I (Ireland, Japan, and Australia); four Tier II (South Africa, Cyprus, Israel, and Abu Dhabi); and one Tier III (British Virgin Islands).
In Ireland, the company is a member of the Investor Compensation Company DAC (ICCL), which provides eligible clients up to EUR 20,000 compensation in the unlikely event that the broker goes bust.
Canadian clients can trade with AvaTrade through Friedberg Direct, a division of Friedberg Mercantile Group Ltd., a member of Canada’s IIROC and the Canadian Investor Protection Fund (CIPF) (see below).
Although some traders may miss the reassuring presence of Britain’s FCA, I think Ireland, Japan, and Australia are sufficient to make up for it.
No, the firm is not regulated in the US and so it doesn’t accept US clients or money originating in the US.
In addition, Canadian clients can somehow trade with AvaTrade but their accounts are held with Friedberg Direct. I’m really not sure how this works. If you go to AvaTrade’s Canadian website, avatrade.ca, the website appears to be largely the same as AvaTrade’s but you get a lot of info about Friedberg. It says in the upper left-hand corner “FRIEDBERG DIRECT powered by AVATRADE Technology.” Friedberg doesn’t offer AvaTrade’s platforms – only MT4 and MT5 – but they do offer Ava Options. So I don’t know what technology they’re talking about, except that the trades are cleared through a subsidiary of AvaTrade, meaning they probably get AvaTrade’s prices.
Curiously, if you look at the Friedberg Direct website itself it says in the upper left-hand corner “Powered by FXCM Technology” and asks you to open an account via MyFXCM.com. In other words, Friedberg also has a similar agreement with FXCM. It looks to me like Friedberg Direct isn’t direct at anything but rather is a company that provides a way for foreign firms to offer their services to Canadian clients without getting Canadian regulation directly.
The headquarters is in Dublin, Ireland. They also have offices in Abu Dhabi, Australia, Chile, France, Israel, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Mongolia (of all places!), Poland, and South Africa.
The company seems to be still owned by its founders, but as it’s a private company I can’t find out for sure. The listing in UK Company House for D.T Direct Investment Hub UK Ltd., the company’s UK subsidiary, shows three people each with more than 25% but less than 50% of the shares: Negev Shekel Nosatzki, who’s a co-founder of the company and describes himself as the owner; Emanuel Kronitz, another co-founder; and Shmuel Yehoshua Aroshas, who apparently also goes by the name Yehoshua Abramovich, who says on LinkedIn that he’s the President of AvaTrade although he’s not mentioned on AvaTrade’s management page. (That may be because of different subsidiaries – we also have conflicting CEOs, with the AvaTrade website listing Dáire Ferguson as the CEO of AVA Trade EU Ltd., the EU entity, but David Dryzin saying on LinkedIn that he’s the Group CEO. The difference in the name, Abramovich vs Aroshas, probably comes from him changing his Russian name to be more in line with Israeli names.)
ZoomInfo, a corporate database, lists Aleksandr Palchikov as “Owner and President” of AvaTrade. That’s also what his LinkedIn profile says, but that’s all his LinkedIn page says and I couldn’t find out anything more about him. ZoomInfo also lists Moshik Lipetz as a co-founder, which he corroborates on his LinkedIn page. One bizarre point though: ZoomInfo has no mention at all about Dáire Ferguson! Curiouser and curiouser.
Mr. Nosatzki seems like a fascinating guy. He started out in the marketing business as a media buying consultant. He then went to university and got a BSc in Computer Science and Economics, after which he founded AvaTrade and was its CMO. Several years ago he fulfilled a “lifetime dream” and went back to school to get a PhD in theoretical computer science from Columbia University in New York. Personally, my lifetime dream has to do with a yacht and women in bikinis, but to each his own.
Yes, as far as we know, the company has been in business for a relatively long 17 years with no major issues. It’s highly regulated in many different jurisdictions, including by some of the most rigorous regulators around.
There is one Spanish guy, Francisco Gómez González, who seems to have it in for the company. He’s even written two books about his problems with AvaTrade, in Spanish unfortunately. I’ve looked at his website in translation though and he seems to be…well, I don’t want to get sued for libel so I’ll just say that what I could understand of his complaints had many obvious mistakes. For example, he claims AvaTrade was “banned” from the US and Cuba although I doubt whether the company even tried to operate in either place. (CFD trading isn’t allowed in the US to begin with and most reputable brokers don’t do business with Cuba because of US sanctions.)
My guess is that if indeed Mr. Gomez did have any problems, he probably got hooked in by one of the many scam sites that imitate genuine brokers by coming up with a name and website close to that of the broker and then stealing clients’ money. EG the UK FCA warned many years ago about a fake company, Ava Capital Markets, that was presenting themselves as the bona fide AVA Trade EU Ltd. This is a scam you should be aware of! Check the name carefully.
I know about this kind trick because I’ve even seen myself listed as working for one of these firms! When I tried to get them to remove my name, they threatened to bombard me with insults on social media and ruin my reputation. Luckily they disappeared a few weeks later.
There are no deposit or withdrawal fees and no commissions. You only pay the spread between the bid & asked price.
There’s an inactivity fee that kicks in after a relatively brief 3 months. It’s 50 dollars, euros, or pounds, depending on your account’s base currency. You’ll get hit with that for every three months that you don’t trade. Then if you don’t trade for 12 consecutive months, you’ll get hit with an administrative fee of 100 dollars, euros, or pounds. In other words, if you don’t intend to trade, please shut down your account.
Spreads are about in line with the market average. EUR/USD is normally quoted around 0.9 pip. Professional traders get a narrower (0.6 pip) spread. This isn’t bad but it’s not the best available. But frankly if your trading is so unprofitable that you’re worried about 0.3 pip then maybe you should find something else to do.
All trading strategies are allowed, including scalping & hedging.
Avatrade is a forex and CFD company. It offers trading in foreign exchange and CFDs on bonds, ETFs, stocks, stock indices, commodities, and cryptocurrencies. The specific range of markets available will depend in part on which trading platform you use (it seems that more are available on MT5) and which of their subsidiaries you’re trading with.
Forex: the company offers trading in 53 forex pairs. In addition to the usual suspects, I noticed CLP (the Chilean peso), CNY, HUF, MXN, and three ILS pairs (USD/ILS, EUR/ILS, and GBP/ILS).
Bonds: AvaTrade offers CFDS on European (German) and Japanese government bonds. No US Treasuries, but then again, no US clients either.
ETFs: Their website lists 12 ETFs, all from the US: VanEck Vectors Gold Miners, Energy Select Sector SPDR Fund, MSCI Brazil Index, MSCI Emerging Markets Index , Dow Jones Select Home Construction index funds, The Financial Select Sector SPDR, S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures ETN, Dow Jones US Real Estate Index fund, and S&P 500 SPDR. (An ETN is effectively the same as an ETF, just that it doesn’t hold the underlying assets that it tracks. SPDRs are ETFs managed by State Street Global Advisors.)
Commodities: AvaTrade offers CFDs on precious metals (gold, silver, platinum, palladium, and they include copper too although that’s technically a base metal); energy (WTI, Brent, natural gas, heating oil, and gasoline); and agricultural products (corn, soybeans, wheat, coffee, sugar, cotton, and cocoa).
Indices: They offer 31 market indices, including the main indices from the major stock markets around the world (S&P 500, NASDAQ 100, DJIA, CAC 40, DAX 30, FTSE 100, etc) plus a number of sector indices, such as Airlines, FAANG, and a Cannabis index (buy high, sell higher!) And the ever-popular VIX index, Wall Street’s “fear gauge.”
Stocks: They offer CFDs on over 600 stocks. A quick perusal showed companies listed in the US, UK, China, Japan, Italy, France, Germany, and Canada. I didn’t flick through all 62 pages to get a more complete view. Please feel free to do so yourself if you’re interested.
Cryptocurrencies: They offer 19 crypto currencies, if you count Bitcoin in USD, EUR, and JPY separately (plus Bitcoin Cash and Bitcoin Gold). They also offer an index on cryptos, the Crypto 10 index. Three cryptos are only available on MT5 (Shiba Inu, Solana, and Polygon). UK regulations prohibit firms from offering crypto CFDs to UK residents.
Options: If you’re a beginning trader – which most of the people using this website are -- then you probably shouldn’t be dealing with options in the first place. You’ve got plenty to learn already and options are complicated derivatives best left to more knowledgeable investors. I’ve taken several courses on options and could feel my understanding melting away the moment I stepped out of the classroom. You should leave options for later, once you’ve grasped the fundamentals of FX trading.
Nonetheless, just FYI and for the more experienced traders looking for a new edge, AvaTrade offers some 54 options, mostly on FX pairs but also on gold, silver, oil, and several stock market indices. This is an unusual offering for a CFD broker.
Account opening is free. The minimum deposit is 100 units of your base currency (USD, EUR, GBP or AUD). Note that GBP and AUD accounts are only available to residents of Britain and Australia, respectively.
The usual KYC regulations require them to ask for a lot of information, e.g. a government-issued ID and a utility bill in your name, but the process usually goes quickly. If you have the necessary documents to hand it should only take a few minutes and your account will be available for trading as soon as there’s money in it.
Deposits are available through credit/debit cards, wire transfer, and various e-payments such as Skrill, WebMoney and Neteller (except if you live in the EU or Australia). One thing I’ve never seen before: if you make a deposit using a credit card, you’ll have to supply “a clear, colour copy of the front and back of the credit card used” (although you may block out some of the middle digits).
Trading in options requires a minimum deposit of $1,000.
There’s no charge for withdrawals. The company says it aims to get withdrawals done in 24-48 hours. We couldn’t verify this independently.
AvaTrade complies with all the usual KYC requirements and so all withdrawals up to the amount that you deposited must be sent back the way they arrived. After that you can have the money sent any way you prefer although it has to be in your own name. This is all quite standard.
AvaTrade offers a number of trading platforms.
First off, you can trade on AvaTrade using the ubiquitous MetaTrader platforms, MT4 and MT5. These are available on desktop, web, and mobile versions.
Their proprietary WebTrader platform, as the name suggests, is accessed through a browser and therefore requires no downloads or installation. It’s a great option for beginning traders as it has an intuitive design and is easy to use – you can move around it easily and find whatever you want to trade quickly. But “easy to use” also means not particularly sophisticated - it provides only three chart types (line, bar, and candlestick) although there are a large number of indicators available (around 90) in several (10) different timeframes. It only offers the three most basic orders: at-the-market, limit orders, and a stop. In other words, it’s a good platform for beginners and intermediate traders, but it can’t compete with the top-of-the-line platforms from some of their competitors.
For those interested in copy trading, you can access DupliTrade and ZuluTrade through the WebTrader.
AvaTradeGO trading app: The company also has its own trading app, AvaTradeGO, but this is not so much a trading platform as it is a portal to allow you to manage your MT4 account from a mobile device (Android or iOS) – not essential as you can also get a mobile version of the MT platforms. However you can use AvaTradeGO to see your trades, create watchlists, view prices and charts, and place orders. You can watch videos and contact customer support. Perhaps most importantly, the app has trading tools from Trading Central integrated into it, which greatly boosts its usefulness. It’s also integrated with AvaTrade’s social trading application, AvaSocial.
AvaOptions: As I said before, I think novice traders should leave options for later. You face enough challenges mastering the basics of the market. But for those more experienced traders, AvaTrade’s AvaOptions app is one of the few specialized option portals aimed at retail investors and available through an FX/CFD broker. The app offers trading in vanilla options on some 54 assets, mostly on FX pairs but also on gold, silver, oil, and several stock market indices. This is an unusual offering for a CFD broker. The platform is marvelously clear (well, as clear as anything having to do with options can be) and has great visuals to help you understand the payoffs from your position. The app displays the strike price on a chart and you can change the price by simply dragging it up or down. There are 14 default trading strategies built into the app; when you select one, the app will automatically choose the appropriate contracts and put them into the order ticket.
The mobile options app seems to be faster and have better visuals than the desktop version, which is only available for Windows.
AvaTrade offers what it calls Guardian Angel – a trading support system that acts as a risk management tool for MT4 and MT5. This is a bot that provides feedback on your trading, much like the annoying reminders to put on your seatbelt that you get in cars nowadays. You can set the parameters and get messages and alerts highlighting such issues as excessive risk, setting stops, margin call alerts, market alerts relevant to you, trading volatility, and “strong/weak trading performance.”
It also offers Market Trends on its AvaTradeGO app. This is a unique way to monitor trends that may be developing in AvaTrade’s trader community. With this you can see what other traders are doing in aggregate to see how the crowd is moving. But be careful: is the “hive mind” right or wrong? You still have to decide for yourself!
Capitalise.ai: For those interested in automated trading, AvaTrade offers a free subscription to Capitalise.ai, which allows you to create your own Expert Advisors (EA), aka trading robots or bots, using everyday English. It also has a library of pre-made strategies that you can implement. (Note that this feature is not unique to AvaTrade.)
For those who would rather leave the trading to someone else, AvaTrade offers three ways to copy other traders.
AvaTrade clients outside of Europe can download the firm’s proprietary social trading app, AvaSocial, which is available in both iOS and Android. This allows you to copy the trades of more experienced traders or to trade yourself using market signals. There are chat rooms to allow you to communicate with other traders, which makes it a good way for beginners to learn more about trading strategist and to find a trading mentor. And once you get established, you might even be able to build up your own following of traders and earn extra money that way.
The firm also offers access to two external copy trading platforms: DupliTrade and ZuluTrade. You can link your AvaTrade account to either of these two platforms and follow traders on those. This isn’t the place to review DupliTrade and ZuluTrade. I’ll just point out that to link your account with Duplitrade you’ll have to deposit a minimum of $2,000 USD, which is far above AvaTrade’s minimum deposit of 100 units of currency (USD, EUR, GBP, or AUD).
Not every broker offers such a variety of ways to copy trade. This is one advantage of AvaTrade for the new trader.
The firm offers both the usual Trading Central research and its own daily in-house fundamental research, including daily market videos on Vimeo and YouTube. Trading Central is directly integrated with the AvaTrade web platform. It offers a comprehensive suite of videos and news but this is hardly unique to AvaTrade – many brokers offer their material. As for the in-house effort, Avatrade has a a blog covering daily market movements, including relevant news, in addition to a regular market commentary presented in video format. I’m sorry to say I didn’t find the reports to be anything special. I thought the videos were particularly boring. There are much better ones out there, IMHO.
AvaTrade does much better with its extensive educational section: AvaAcademy, which offers “almost two dozen Online trading courses, 150 lessons, 50 quizzes” on stocks, ETFs, forex, commodities, bonds, indices and cryptocurrencies. I wasn’t able to view them so I can’t pass judgement on the quality, but the quantity is certainly impressive. (This seems to be the rebranded SharpTrader Academy, which AvaTrade bought in 2017.)
The firm has extensive information on economic indicators, which is unusual; most brokers concentrate on technical analysis, plus 20-some articles on trading rules, which would be required reading for any new traders.
Beginners will love the Beginner’s Trading Guides, an exhaustive (53-part) introduction to the markets. These include introductions to various kinds of trading (how to start trading from home, position trading, swing trading) to various theoretical topics (like “the efficient market hypothesis& random walk theory).
All told this is a world-class educational section, competitive with the best of them.
AvaTrade’s customer support is available 24/5, as is the norm in the industry. It’s available by
The chat is available in several languages besides English, including Arabic, Chinese, French, German, and Italian. Phone support is available locally; there’s a long list of local phone numbers on the website.
The response on the live chat is quick. Emails generally get a response in a day, which is also pretty good compared to the norm.
There have been complaints about customer service and response time, but you can’t please all of the people all of the time.
AvaTrade is an excellent broker for beginners. Its proprietary platform is simple enough for newcomers to master yet has enough functions to be useful, or you can go with the widely used MetaTrader platforms. The educational offering is top notch – you should be able to learn everything you need here. If not, there’s a deep social community where you can ask questions and, one hopes, get answers from other traders. It offers all the assets you’ll want to trade. Spreads are competitive. The only place where it falls down is in the daily commentary, but you can get enough of that from Trading Central, which is integrated into their platform.
More experienced traders however might want to look for a broker that offers volume discounts and more day-to-day news and analysis.
Regardless of how or what you trade, the broker you choose should be safe to use, affordable, and offer everything you need to trade at your best. That’s why we’re highly selective. We only feature brokers regulated by a trusted authority and we make it easy to compare their fees & features, so that you can make an informed choice.