Foreign exchange markets are open 24 hours a day, five days a week, which means investors can constantly scan international markets for opportunities to invest. Having access to multiple asset classes from within a single platform is important to many investors, as financial markets, including forex, are highly interconnected. The ability to react quickly to geopolitical and economic news events in real time is key.
In the early 2000s, a fine line used to exist: brokers were most often concentrated on offering just one asset, for example forex, to their customers. However, today trading platforms are no longer just for trading forex, stocks, or futures; instead, multi-asset offerings are now industry standards among all the largest online brokers. That said, the range of products and markets you can trade still varies considerably across firms.
During our review of 20 international forex brokers for 2017, we ranked firms by the largest offering. Brokers having the widest range of available investment offerings to trade across global markets – currency pairs, CFDs, and other instruments – are featured below.
First place goes to CMC Markets, which not only offers the largest number of currency pairs, (183), but also quotes prices both ways for each pair (i.e., EUR/USD or USD/EUR). CMC Markets offers 10,172 CFDs across all major asset classes, such as energy, metals, commodities, indices, fixed-income markets (treasuries or bonds), and single-stock shares across international stock exchanges.
Saxo Bank earned second place with 9,000 CFDs available and 145 currency pairs, including forex options trading supported on key major pairs and crosses. Saxo Bank’s offering of wealth advisory solutions to investors further entrenches its position.
In third place is IG, which makes 7,500 CFDs available for customers, including 91 currency pairs and even five bitcoin-related pairs. The company’s offering of a share-trading account for global stock markets helped further cement its spot among the top three firms (for more information about IG’s share-dealing offering, read our IG Group UK share dealing review on our sister site, StockBrokers.com).
Other stand outs outside the top three include City Index, Interactive Brokers, and Swissquote. In fourth place, City Index offers just 66 currency pairs and an unclear range of CFDs (we were unable to confirm the exact number of CFDs offered, as anywhere from 7,000 to 10,000 are listed on its website). Interactive Brokers took fifth place with 4,217 CFDs available and 85 forex pairs. Meanwhile, Swissquote offers an extensive number of products on its exchange-traded offering from Swissquote Bank, yet these are segmented away from its core offering of 78 forex pairs and 51 CFDs.
All in all, CMC Markets is the top choice when it comes to having the largest offering of investments, including currency pairs, CFDs, options, and other instruments within its platform, giving international traders a comprehensive multi-asset solution, including access to forex with nearly every pair available.