broker

IG Review 2022

Updated:
4.8
Trust
4.9
Fees
4.7
Platforms and Tools
4.6
Customer Support
4.3
Tradable Instruments
5.0
Account Types and Terms
5.0
Deposit and Withdrawal
4.8
Research
5.0
Education
5.0
While we adhere to strict editorial integrity, this page may refer to our partners' products. Here's how we make money.Learn how we make money and our review methodology.

Please Note: This review covers IG’s non-US entities, which are not accessible to US citizens. If you are a US citizen, please visit IG-US review.

The Big Picture

If you’re serious about trading the world’s financial markets using the best tools in the business then IG could be for you. Being one of the safest and most regulated brokers in the world, the offering is aimed at professionals and institutions. But, IG makes it super easy for beginners to access the markets like a professional.

Through IG you can trade on more than 17,000+ financial instruments covering stocks, forex, indices, commodities, bonds, ETFs and cryptocurrencies (depending on where you are located). They also provide weekend markets you can trade on too!

The custom-built web platform and mobile trading are simple to use and one of the best we’ve seen. There is also a wealth of support and education to help you in your journey. You can also access a wide range of trading and investing accounts as IG prides itself on offering a wealth management solution for beginners, professionals and institutions.

For this IG Review, we focused on the services provided by www.ig.com/uk, operated by IG Markets Ltd, an entity regulated by the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), using a Spread Betting account on the broker’s custom-built web trading platform and mobile app.

IG Key Takeaways for 2021

  • We evaluated IG according to nine categories. The broker scored maximum points in most sections such as Instruments, Accounts, Research, Education and Support.
  • IG also scored highly in the Trust, Fees and Platforms categories. Regulated by 11 of the world’s top financial regulators and agencies, you can access commission-free and low spread trading accounts from a feature-rich and simple to use web platform and mobile app.
  • Beginners will enjoy just how simple it is to use the web trading platform and mobile trading app to trade on 17,000+ markets. Opening an account is easy too and the research and education sections are very well laid out and comprehensive.
  • Advanced traders will enjoy access to a wealth of trading and investing accounts and the different types of markets available such as spot, futures, options and forwards. You can also access platforms that allow for algorithmic trading, DMA (Direct Market Access) trading and L2 Dealing which is used by institutions.

What Sets IG Apart from Other Brokers?

IG is one of the most regulated brokers we’ve come across, authorised by 9 of the world’s top financial regulators making it a safe broker to trade with. The broker provides a comprehensive way to trade and invest across 17,000+ markets.

While the offering is geared towards professionals and institutions, they make it simple for beginner traders to access and use the same tools. This includes a good range of trading platforms. Although the custom-built web platform and mobile app are feature-rich and simple to use.

Who is IG For?

IG prides itself on providing retail and professional traders with an institution-style offering. The range of markets, different types of trading and investing accounts, as well as its wealth management products, is an offering that is well above the industry average.

While IG provides access to a lot of professional and institutional trading tools, they make it very simple for beginner traders to get started with simple to use, fast and responsive custom built trading platforms and comprehensive research and education tools such as webinars, podcasts, daily articles and videos.

IG Pros and Cons

Pros Cons
  • Globally regulated and safe
  • Feature-rich and easy to use web platform and mobile app
  • Global entities have different investor protections so do your research

 

broker

74% of retail CFD accounts lose money

 

About the Author

Jitan Solanki
After discovering techniques to trade pan-European and US equities, Jitan developed a love for a short to medium term trading on indices and commodities, and later on currencies.
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How Do We Rate?

When trading forex and CFDs, it is crucial to know a broker's strengths and weaknesses. That is why FX Empire developed its proprietary rating system. We put the knowledge and expertise of our reviewers to work to bring you the most suitable brokers. A total of 200 variables have been analyzed to help you choose your broker wisely. This chart describes all the categories we evaluated and rated.
How Do We Rate Chart
Visit our methodology page to learn more about our review and rating process.
IG Main Features
☑️
Regulations
FCA (United Kingdom), ASIC (Australia), FSCA (South Africa), FINMA (Switzerland), NFA (United States), DFSA (United Arab Emirates), FMA (New Zealand), CFTC (United States), BaFin (Germany), MAS (Singapore)
💰
Products (CFD)
Currencies, Commodities, Indices, Stocks, Bonds, Crypto
💹
Max Leverage
1:30 (FCA), 1:30 (ASIC), 1:500 (FSCA), 1:100 (FINMA), 1:50 (NFA), 1:50 (DFSA), 1:500 (FMA), 1:50 (CFTC), 1:30 (BaFin), 1:20 (MAS)
📊
Trading platforms
MT4, Proprietary
💳
Deposit Options
Wire Transfer, Credit Card, PayPal, Debit Card
💳
Withdrawal Options
Wire Transfer, Credit Card, PayPal, Debit Card
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Check if...
unknownIG accepts clients from your country:
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74% of retail CFD accounts lose money

IG Full Review

Trust

4.9
How Do We Test A Broker's Trust?
When choosing a broker, trustworthiness is one of the most important things to keep in mind. Always check the broker's regulations, know how financially secure the firm is, and find out whether the broker is transparent and reliable. These factors, calculated into our score, will help you understand if your money is safe.

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IG scored near-maximum points in this category as they are regulated by 11 of the world’s top financial regulators and agencies and have been in business for more than 47 years. The IG Group is also a public company listed on the London Stock Exchange and is part of the FTSE 250 Index, making IG a safe broker.

Why is it important to know where your broker subsidiary (entity) is regulated?

The location of a broker will dictate the level of regulatory oversight and protections offered to investors. Due to a regulatory clampdown from tier 1 regulators such as the FCA, CySEC and ASIC, many brokers have moved offshore so it’s worthwhile doing your due diligence.

We look for several things when analysing the safety and trust of a broker. This includes:

  1. Segregation of client funds from company funds. Having client funds segregated from company funds is always important as you don’t want your broker to use your funds to run their business!
  2. A negative balance protection policy. This means that your account cannot go into a negative balance from adverse movements in the market.
  3. Compensation scheme. Does the entity or regulator provide access to compensation in the event a broker goes bust?
  4. Are additional safeguards put in place by the broker even when they are not required to do so? This is a great measure of just how serious your broker takes your safety.

Some financial regulators make it a regulatory requirement to offer some of these features, while others do not.

We found that IG is very transparent about which entity you open an account with, how the entity is regulated and what kind of regulatory protection you have as a client.

This is because all of the information is laid out clearly on its website and the fact that the IG Group is also a publicly-traded company on the London Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the FTSE 250 Index. It is a legal and regulatory requirement to have clear information provided to users about its services, fees and protections

IG Regulations

IG operates multiple entities all around the world and is authorised and regulated in every region they operate.

The names of the entities which operate in different countries and who they are authorised and regulated by are listed below:

  • IG Index Ltd and IG Markets Ltd – Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), a tier 1 regulator.
  • IG Europe GmbH – Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin), a tier 1 regulator.
  • IG Markets Ltd Australia – Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), a tier 1 regulator.
  • IG Bank S.A. – Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA), a tier 1 regulator.
  • IG Markets South Africa Ltd – Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA), a tier 2 regulator.
  • IG Asia Pte Ltd – Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), a tier 1 regulator.
  • IG Markets Ltd Australia – Financial Markets Authority (FMA), a tier 2 regulator.
  • IG Limited – Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA), a tier 2 regulator.
  • IG Securities Ltd – Japan Financial Services Agency (JFSA), a tier 1 regulator.
  • IG US LLC – Supervised by National Futures Association (NFA), a tier 1 regulator. Please visit the IG US review for more details.
  • Nadex – Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), a tier 1 regulator.

You can confirm the regulations and licences of each one of these entities from the regulator’s register. For example, the screenshot below confirms the FCA licence and regulation:

IG Markets FCA Authorisation, 23 November 2021

IG Protections and Safeguards

The regulatory protection and safeguards you have as an investor are extremely important. You need to know how your money is kept safe, how the broker is protecting you and if there is any compensation if the broker goes bust.

Your geographical region will be the key factor in which entity you open an account with and what protections you have. Here’s a quick rundown:

Country Regulator Segregated Funds Compensation
UK FCA Yes Yes. FSCS, £85,000
Europe (excluding UK and Switzerland) BaFin Yes Yes. Up to €20,000
Australia ASIC Yes No
Switzerland FINMA Yes – deposit of client assets Yes. 100,00 CHF
South Africa FSCA Yes No
Singapore MAS Yes No
New Zealand FMA Yes No
Dubai DFSA Yes No
Japan JFSA Yes No
USA (IG) NFA No No
USA (Nadex) CFTC Yes No

*Regulations up to date as of 23 November 2021.

UK retail clients are also protected through a negative balance protection policy which has been enforced by the FCA. However, clients classed as professionals will not have a negative balance protection policy.

As IG has been around since 1974, they are considered to be a stable broker as they will have weathered many storms in the financial markets and regulatory changes over the years.

The IG Group is also a publicly-traded company on the London Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the FTSE 250 Index. This means the group has to provide transparent information regarding how they are making their money and where it is parked, providing an extra level of safety when trading with IG.

Fees

4.7
How Do We Test A Broker's Fees?
Broker fees can be difficult to understand. We test the broker's platforms and examine commissions, spreads, and overnight fees to ensure that you can determine if trading with this broker is worth your time and money.

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IG’s trading fees are very competitive overall and better than the industry average with some exceptions such as stocks. There is an inactivity fee but this is only charged after 24 months of inactivity on the account.

There are a variety of different fees to look at when choosing a broker.

  • Trading fees are those associated with buying and selling a financial instrument and include:
    • Commission – The cost to enter and exit a trade.
    • Spread – The cost between the buy price and sell price
    • Overnight swap fee – The cost of holding a leveraged position overnight.
    • Conversion fees – The cost to convert your base currency into the currency of the asset you are trading, if it is different.
  • Non-trading fees are charges that are not related to buying and selling a financial instrument and include:
  • Deposit and withdrawal fees (discussed further down this review)
  • Inactivity fees – The cost to have a trading account opened with zero activity on it.

IG Trading Fees

In our live trading test for fees, we used the commission-free Spread Betting trading account from IG Index Ltd which is authorised and regulated by the FCA.

We viewed the live spread for Forex, indices and commodities at two different times of the day – around 8 am and 2 pm London time on 23 November 2021. The live spread for stocks was viewed at 2.45 pm London time which is just after the US market opens.These times generally cover the most liquid sessions of the day and should have the best available spreads.

What did we find? IG are very competitive and better than the industry average in most cases, with a few exceptions.

Instrument London AM Spread London PM Spread
EURUSD 0.6 0.9
GBPJPY 2.5 3.2
Gold 0.3 0.3
WTI Oil 0.02 0.02
DAX 40 1.2 1.2
Dow 30 3.6 2.4
Apple n/a (not open) 8
Tesla n/a (not open) 2

We also found the overnight swap fees were better than the industry average. This fee is important for long-term traders, as overnight fees can add up if you are holding trades for a long period of time.

Are IG Trading Fees Good?

Overall, IG fees are competitive. The spread on EURUSD remained below 1 pip through our testing, while the spread for GBPJPY did increase in the afternoon. This could be down to volatility but it’s still below 5 pips which is good.

The fees for commodities and indices were also good. The fee to trade the Dow Jones 30 index (Wallstreet in IG) was much better when the US market opened which is good to see as this is expected as more US traders buy and sell.

We also found the trading fees for stocks such as Apple and Tesla were also good but around the industry average. Some brokers may offer better spreads but then sting you on the overnight fee – which for IG is very competitive.

It’s worthwhile remembering that these spreads are for the commission-free trading account. Other brokers may show better spreads but there may also be a commission to buy and sell. This is why, overall, IG fees are very competitive and in most cases are better than the industry average.

IG Non-Trading Fees

Some brokers impose an inactivity fee on trading accounts if there is no activity on your account, such as the buying and selling of an instrument, deposits and withdrawals, for a certain period of time.

With IG, there is an inactive fee of £12 per month if your Spread Bet or CFD trading account remains inactive for 24 consecutive months and holds no positions or funds.

There is no inactivity fee if you receive dividend payments in a share dealing account (including ISAs and SIPPs) or have an open position in an IG Smart Portfolio.

Platforms and Tools

4.6
How Do We Test A Broker's Platforms and Tools?
Platforms are where you trade, so they must be secure, fast, and accessible while offering you the tools you need to succeed. Each broker's desktop, web, and mobile platforms are evaluated according to the order types, speed of execution, ease of use, and other 'need to know' features.

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IG’s custom-built web platform and mobile app are top-notch trading platforms that are above what the industry average offers. Easy to access, simple to use and packed with lots of tools and additional features such as guaranteed stop-loss orders. Advanced traders are also offered institutional-level platforms such as L2 Dealer, MetaTrader 4 and ProRealTime.

With IG, you can trade from a variety of different platforms. The mobile trading app is one of the best in the industry, packed with technical analysis tools, responsive charts and the ability to trade on multiple markets with ease.

The web platform is also top-notch. You can manage all of your trading accounts and any investment accounts from just one place which is convenient if you take up IG’s wealth management offerings. Orders are done via STP (straight through processing) which provides much better execution.

But the platforms aren’t just for beginners. IG also offers advanced trading platforms such as L2 Dealer which allows you to trade with Direct Market Access and view market depth and the order book. Both the MetaTrader 4 and ProRealTime platforms are great for algorithmic traders who want to create and run automated trading strategies.

IG Desktop/Web Platform

The IG web platform is feature-rich, easy to access and simple to use. There is a full suite of technical analysis tools and execution methods available. The IG desktop platforms are geared towards professional traders and will require a longer learning curve.

For our live trading platform test, we used the IG web platform which is available on multiple browsers. The platform can be accessed at the click of a button from the IG client portal area and provides features well above the industry average.

General Ease of Use

The custom-built, web trading platform is easy to access and simple to use making it great for beginner traders. You can navigate the platform easily and you can also customise what you see by creating different layouts.

The charts are clean and very responsive. Not only is it easy to move around on the charts but there are also a lot of technical indicators and drawing tools you can use. All of these tools have an ‘i’ next to their name which gives you some educational information. This is a great addition for beginners.

Advanced traders will also like the extra features available on the web platform. You can put economic event icons on your charts so you know when there are key news announcements coming out.

The platform has been well thought out and designed for traders to find what they want and to trade on the market as quickly and seamlessly as possible.

Charts

The IG charts are easy to access when you open the platform. Just click on any instrument from the selection provided or search for your own instrument and click on the name. The chart opens in the browser and has a trading ticket next to it.

You can add charts to a workspace and detach them if you want them spread across multiple screens. The charts themselves are very clean and responsive. You can view a wide variety of different timeframes including monthly, weekly, daily, hourly, minute, second and tick charts.

There are more than 140 different technical indicators and drawing tools you can use for technical analysis. You can also access five different chart types including candlesticks, Heikin-Ashi, line, HLOC and mountain.

There is also an ‘i’ button after each technical indicator and drawing tool which gives you more information on it which is a great education tool.

Below is a screenshot of the IG web platform.

IG Web Trading Platform

Orders

You can place live market trades which enter you in the market at the current price. You can also place pending trades that will enter you in the market at a set predefined price level that you type into the order ticket.

Expiry orders are also available. You can set a date and time or when your order should expire if it hasn’t gone to your selected entry level. There are also different stop loss orders you can use.

A normal stop loss order means your broker will get you out at the stop loss price subject to market conditions. If the market gaps and does not trade at your stop loss then you open yourself up to a bigger loss.

IG also provides access to a guaranteed stop loss. This is a stop loss order that IG will guarantee gets filled regardless of what happens in the market. However, there is a premium to pay if it does get triggered and your guaranteed stop loss needs to be a minimum distance away from the market.

Other Features

On the web platform, you can receive a stream of notifications from Bloomberg, Reuters, City AM and other financial media publications. You can also access Signals which provides real-time trading ideas for third-party financial analysis companies.

IG Mobile App

The custom-built IG mobile app is easy to access, simple to use and packed with a lot of features. You can perform technical analysis, place different types of orders and trade across thousands of markets all from the mobile app.

You can create different watchlists from the trading app, or use the pre-populated watchlists which include Popular Markets, Weekend Markets, US Equity Options, Weekly US Equity Options, Major Commodities, Major FX, Major Indices, Major Shares, Cryptocurrencies, IPO Grey Markets and Recently Traded.

Devices

You can download the mobile app for Android and iOS devices. In our test, we downloaded the IG mobile app on an iOS device from the App Store.

General Ease of Use

The mobile app is simple to use, fast and responsive. The app provides something for both beginner and advanced traders.

In the first tab, you can access different watchlists. You can create your own watchlist of instruments or use the pre-selected watchlists that are readily available. You can also search for individual markets to find what you’re looking for.

After clicking on an instrument you are faced with several options which include Deal, Chart, Set Alert, Market Data, News, Market Info, Add to Watchlist and Key Information Document.

Lots of great options for traders to have, especially the ability to trade so quickly and access relevant news announcements and from the market info section.

Charts

The IG mobile app has very clean and responsive charts. You can access five different types of charts such as candlesticks and line charts, as well as 17 timeframes, 19 drawing tools and 32 technical trading indicators.

Below are some screenshots of the IG mobile app for iOS devices:

IG Mobile App for iOS

Orders

The mobile app allows you to place all the same orders as the web platform highlighted above. This includes market orders, pending orders, as well as normal and guaranteed stop loss orders.

You can also set expiries to your orders and set price alerts for different instruments from the app.

Other Features

Most of the additional trading features are on the desktop platform. The mobile app provides a simple way to place trades and manage positions.

Tradable Instruments

5.0
How Do We Test A Broker's Tradable Instruments?
In this section, we check the broker’s market offering and how varied the instruments and asset classes are. It will allow you to check if they offer what you're looking for and what you can trade.

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With IG you can trade on more than 17,000+ financial instruments covering all the major asset classes including Forex, stocks, indices, commodities, bonds, ETFs and cryptocurrencies (depending on your location).

The range of instruments available to trade on is well above the industry average. IG provides access to a large range of Forex pairs including majors, minors, exotics and emerging markets.

There is also a large range of indices covering much of the world’s stock markets, as well as commodities covering energy, metals and softs. The stock offering is one of the largest we have seen with access to most of the world’s stock markets.

What are CFDs?

CFDs, or Contracts for Difference, is a derivative product that allows you to speculate on the price direction of a financial instrument allowing you to profit from rising and falling markets. You can also trade on margin which means you can control a large position with a smaller deposit, amplifying both gains and losses.

What Can You Trade with IG?

With IG you can trade on:

  • 16,000+ stocks
    • ASX, Euronext, CSE, NASDAQ, Xetra, TSE, NYSE, BME, LSE, AMEX, SWX and moreץ
  • 100+ Forex pairs
    • Majors, minors, exotics, emerging markets
  • 69 indices
    • Global stock indices and sector indices
  • 38 commodities
    • Precious metals, base metals, energies, soft commodities
  • 11 cryptocurrencies (not available in all countries)
    • Mostly against the USD
  • 19 bonds
  • US, UK, European and Japanese

This is a great offering covering all the major markets across all the different asset classes. Many retail brokers would not offer bonds as it is not heavily traded by retail traders but mainly by professionals.

You can also trade on IPOs (initial public offerings) and the premarket trading session on some US stocks.

Below is a list of just some of the available markets for trading:

Forex Indices
EURUSD | GBPJPY | AUDUSD | CADJPY | USDZAR | USDHKD | NZDCHF | INRJPY | NOKSEK | USDTHB Wall Street | US Tech 100 | Germany 40 | FTSE 100 | Japan 225 | India 50 | US Fang | China H-Shares | Cannabis Index
Commodities Stocks
US Crude | Natural Gas | Carbon Emissions | Gold | Palladium | Zinc | Corn | Soybeans Apple | Tesla | BP | HSBC | Barclays | Daimler | Airbus | Disney | Goldman Sachs
Crypto Bonds
Bitcoin | Ethereum | Litecoin | Stellar | Cardano German Bund | US Treasury Bond | UK Long Gilt | Euroswiss

*Details regarding the available assets are taken from the IG trading platform and website and are correct at the time of this review.

IG offers a really good range of tradable instruments and the number of instruments available is well above the industry average.

Furthermore, you can also access these markets through different types of trading products such as Options and Futures. There are also Digital 100s for professional traders which are simplified options that offer a yes/no outcome.

While Options trading is not available in all countries you can trade options on equity indices, major forex pairs, metals and energies.

74% of retail CFD accounts lose money

Customer Support

4.3
How Do We Test A Broker's Customer Support?
Traders tend to underestimate customer support, but it might be a crucial feature in moments of crisis. In our rating, we check the contact methods available, how accessible a live agent is and how helpful the responses are. This information will allow you to know if a broker can provide full support when you need it.

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IG provides customer support 24 hours a day. In our live test, the live chat was slow while the phone chat was the fastest way to contact the helpdesk.

You can contact IG customer support via live chat, phone or email 24 hours a day from 8 am Saturday to 10 pm Friday UK time. You can also find answers to any questions in the IG Community which is an online forum for trading discussions and support.

Why is customer support important? If you need help with your platform, or question a trade execution or have any administration issues you want to know that you can contact your broker as fast as possible when you want!

IG Customer Support Test

In our live customer support test, we used the live chat icon on the IG home page on Wednesday 24 November at 11 am UK time. It took around 5 minutes to connect to an agent.

Once we asked our question it took a further 10 minutes for it to be answered. The live agent answered the question by sending me a link on where to find the information.

IG Live Chat Support Test Transcript

At the same time, we contacted the freephone telephone number on the website and managed to connect to a live agent who answered our question all in under 5 minutes.

Deposit and Withdrawal

4.8
How Do We Test A Broker's Deposit and Withdrawal?
The deposit or withdrawal process can be a tricky one. You may discover that there are hidden fees, or that withdrawal times are longer than you anticipated. We check these factors and others so you know what to expect when trading with this broker.

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IG scored highly in this section because you can deposit and withdraw funds fee-free. Deposit options are fast and include debit/credit card, bank wire transfer and PayPal.

You can deposit funds using a wide range of currencies but any funds deposited in a different currency to your base currency will be converted. This will also incur a conversion fee.

Overall, depositing and withdrawing funds is very easy from the web platform or mobile app. Funds deposited via credit/debit cards are credited instantly with bank transfers taking up to three working days.

IG Deposit Methods

With IG you can deposit funds fee-free using a variety of methods.

Method Commission Minimum Amount Processing Time
Bank Wire Zero £0 Up to 3 working days
Credit/debit card Zero £250 Instant
PayPal Zero £250 Instant

* For all available deposit and withdrawal options refer to the IG’s Deposit & Withdrawal page.

If you are funding your account via credit card or debit card there is a minimum deposit amount of £250.

If you are funding your account via bank transfer there is no minimum deposit amount.

IG Withdrawal Methods

You can withdraw your funds from your IG account fee-free.

Method Commission Minimum Amount Processing Time
Bank Wire Zero £100 Same day but up to 3 days
Credit/debit card Zero £100 2 – 5 working days
PayPal Zero £100 Instant

Withdrawals done by bank wire transfer before 12 pm UK time should reach your account on the same day but can take up to 3 days.

If your overall balance is less than £100 you can withdraw any available amount.

Account Types and Terms

5.0
How Do We Test A Broker's Account Types and Terms?
In order to achieve your trading goals, you need to choose the right account. We evaluate each broker's account types, how easy it is to open an account with them, and the steps involved, so you can decide if it is worth your time to open an account.

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Opening an account with IG is super fast as everything is digital. There is no minimum deposit to open a trading account. You can also open a good range of investing accounts too. The options available are well above the industry average.

With IG, you can open spread betting and CFD trading accounts. Spread betting accounts are just for UK residents. These are commission-free, with only spreads and overnight fees payable and profits are generally tax-free in the UK.

CFD trading accounts are available to everyone and are also commission-free with the exception of share trading. You can access all the same trading platforms for each of the accounts but only direct market access (DMA) trading is available via CFDs.

Opening an account was a fast and simple process and took less than 5 minutes. Verification was also done in less than 24 hours.

Why is Choosing the Right Account Type Important?

The account you open will impact nearly every aspect of your trading. Different accounts will often have different fees, tradable instruments and platforms so choosing the right one for your own needs is important.

What Account Types does IG Offer?

From the UK, IG offers a range of different accounts that are suitable for beginner and advanced traders. Some of the features are highlighted below:

Spread Betting Account CFD Trading Account
Platforms IG Web & Mobile. ProRealTime, MetaTrader4 IG Web & Mobile. ProRealTime, MetaTrader4, L2 Dealer
Commission Zero Zero (except share CFDs, US = 2 cents per share / UK = 0.10%)
Spread (from) 0.3 pips 0.3 pips
Minimum Deposit Zero Zero
Leverage (up to)

1:30 retail

1:300 professional

1:30 retail

1:300 professional

Markets 17,000+ 17,000+
Demo Account Yes Yes

Source: IG Ways to Trade

One of the main differences between the spread betting and CFD trading account is that there are commissions per trade on CFD shares on top of the spread. These commissions are generally in line with the industry average.

You can also gain direct market access (DMA) with the CFD trading account. This allows you to see the order book and market depth and is mainly used by institutional traders.

There are also a range of investing accounts available from the UK. These include:

  • Share Dealing Account. Buy and sell thousands of real shares and ETFs from all around the world.
  • IG Smart Portfolios. IG will build and manage a diversified portfolio of shares and ETFs tailored to your risk profile.
  • ISA and SIPPs. For UK residents you can access tax-efficient investment products to invest in shares and ETFs.

What is CFD Leverage?

Leverage in CFD trading allows you to open a large position with a smaller deposit. For example, a 30:1 trading leverage means you can have $30,000 exposure with only a $1,000 investment. A 500:1 trading leverage means you can have a $500,000 exposure with only a $1,000 investment.

But leverage is a double-edged sword. It can amplify your winning and losing trades. This is one reason regulators such as CySEC, ASIC and the FCA cut the leverage brokers can offer retail traders – to make it safer for beginners.

With IG, traders classified as retail can access a maximum of 1:30 leverage. Professional traders can access higher leverage but will lose some of the retail protection such as negative balance protection.

How to Open an Account with IG

We found opening an account with IG was a fast and simple process. It took less than 5 minutes to open a Spread Betting account with the UK entity. Everything is done digitally so you can be up and running very quickly.

Here is the step by step process we used to open an account:

  • Step 1: Click on the Create Live Account icon on the homepage and fill in your profile information. Name, email, username and password.
  • Step 2: Choose the account you want to open. Spread Betting, CFD or Share Dealing.
  • Step 3: Provide personal details such as birth date, telephone number, home address, nationality, employment details, income and savings details and experience.
  • Step 4: Once you’ve accepted the terms and conditions you can access the IG client portal area to upload verification documents to start depositing funds and start trading.

Verifying your identity is a standard procedure for regulated brokers. We found this process to be easy as you just need to upload proof of ID (passport or driver’s licence) and proof of residence (utility bill or bank statement).

You can upload your documents, access your trading accounts, platform downloads and additional features all through the IG client portal area. This customised area is great for managing all of your trading activity.

IG Client Portal

IG does not accept clients from North Korea, Iran and certain other countries.

74% of retail CFD accounts lose money

Research

5.0
How Do We Test A Broker's Research?
Research options provided by brokers may not be seen as the most important feature for some traders, but they can give you an edge over the competition. Staying on top of important market news announcements and being aware of big themes can be very helpful. The rating system provides a clear picture of how well your broker fulfills this service.

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IG provides an excellent range of research materials that is high-quality and regularly updated. This includes detailed market news, videos, special event webinars and trading ideas.

Due to the wealth of research materials available on the level of quality of the articles and videos, IG scored maximum points in this category. You can also subscribe to receive the IG Morning Call, Trade of the Week and The Week Ahead articles and videos to your inbox.

On the broker’s website, there is a dedicated News and Trade Ideas section which is regularly updated, sometimes multiple times a day. On this page, there are sections for Forex, Indices, Shares, Commodities and Recent Articles.

IG News and Trade Ideas Research

The materials are great for both beginner and advanced traders. There are special reports covering upcoming news announcements, a podcast and regular webinars covering different topics.

The webinars are a mix of education topics, weekly trading updates and special events for the week or month. The quantity and quality of the materials are well above the industry average.

Education

5.0
How Do We Test A Broker's Education?
Educating yourself on how to trade the financial markets can make the difference between success and failure. We check the educational content provided by the broker, its quality and suitability for beginners and advanced traders.

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The IG Academy is packed with content suitable for beginner and advanced traders. There are courses, trading webinars, a webinar library and lots of high-quality educational articles.

IG scored maximum points in this section. Educational materials include videos, courses, articles and webinars which are all high quality and very detailed.

The courses are categorised by levels which include Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced. Topics include technical analysis, trading psychology, risk management and more, as shown below.

IG Academy

The courses are in-depth and great for beginner and advanced traders. You can keep track of your lessons and your leanings while testing your knowledge with a quiz at the end.

Most of the content in the courses are in the form of articles. However, there are live trading webinars you can register for, access a library of old webinars and watch education videos on the IG YouTube channel.

The Bottom Line

If you’re looking to trade with a broker that provides access to institutional level markets, tools and products to beginner, retail traders then IG could be for you. The wealth of the IG offering is suitable for beginners, professionals and even institutions.

Not only can you access a range of trading and investing accounts to trade commission-free with low spreads, but you can trade on more than 17,000+ markets covering stocks, Forex, indices, commodities, bonds, ETFs, IPOs as well as through different products such as spread betting, CFDs, options and futures.

Beginner traders will enjoy the simplicity of the online web platform and mobile trading app. Packed with lots of features yet simple to use and easy to navigate. The research and education provided by IG are also top-notch.

Advanced traders will enjoy access to more advanced trading platforms such as ProRealTime, MetaTrader 4 and L2 Dealer. The latter can be used to trade direct market access (DMA) so you can view the order book and market depth.

Whether you are a beginner or a professional looking to elevate your trading, IG is a broker that is definitely worth considering.

FAQ

Where is IG based?
IG is based at Cannon Bridge House, 25 Dowgate Hill, London EC4R 2YA.

Is IG safe?
Yes. IG is regulated by 9 of the world’s top financial regulators and agencies including the FCA, BaFin, ASIC, DFSA, FSCA, MAS, JFSA, FINMA, FMA, NFA and CFTC.

How does IG make money?
IG makes money through its trading fees such as spreads, commissions and swaps on certain trading accounts and platforms.

Is IG good for beginners?
Yes, beginner traders will find a lot of resources and help to support them.

How do I deposit in an IG account?
You can deposit funds via bank wire, credit/debit card and PayPal.

What is the min. deposit for IG?
The minimum deposit is 250 GBP.

How do I withdraw money from IG?
You can withdraw funds via bank wire, credit/debit card and PayPal.

How long does it take to withdraw money from IG?
Bank wire is on the same day. Credit/debit cards are 2-3 days and PayPal is instant.

What is the max leverage in IG?
For retail traders, 1:30.

How do I open an account with IG?
You can open an account with either entity in just a few minutes through the Create Live Account tab on the broker’s website.

What platforms does IG offer?
Custom-built web and mobile app, as well as MetaTrader 4, ProRealTime and L2 Dealer.

Does IG offer a demo account?
Yes

broker

74% of retail CFD accounts lose money

See IG Full Information
Broker General Information
Trading Features
Other Details
Headquarters Country
United Kingdom
Foundation Year
1974
Regulations
FCA (United Kingdom), ASIC (Australia), FSCA (South Africa), FINMA (Switzerland), NFA (United States), DFSA (United Arab Emirates), FMA (New Zealand), CFTC (United States), BaFin (Germany), MAS (Singapore)
Publicly Traded
No
Number Of Employees
100
Trading platforms
MT4, Proprietary
Restricted Countries
North Korea, Iran
Max Leverage
1:30 (FCA), 1:30 (ASIC), 1:500 (FSCA), 1:100 (FINMA), 1:50 (NFA), 1:50 (DFSA), 1:500 (FMA), 1:50 (CFTC), 1:30 (BaFin), 1:20 (MAS)
Deposit Options
Wire Transfer, Credit Card, PayPal, Debit Card
Withdrawal Options
Wire Transfer, Credit Card, PayPal, Debit Card
Time to Withdrawal
3
Cryptocurrencies
Bitcoin, Cardano, Litecoin, Stellar, Ethereum
Products (CFD)
Currencies, Commodities, Indices, Stocks, Bonds, Crypto
Demo Account
Yes
Islamic Account
No
Segregated Account
Yes
Managed Account
No
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