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CMC Markets Review

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 75% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. This content is intended for information and educational purposes only and should not be considered investment advice or investment recommendation.

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Founded in 1989, CMC Markets (LSE: CMCX) has grown to become one of the leading retail forex and CFD brokerages, offering nearly 10,000 CFD instruments across major asset classes including forex, commodities, and securities markets.

CMC Markets serves over 60,000 clients worldwide through its 15 offices globally and across its entities regulated in the UK, Canada, and Australia.

Review Summary

Rank: 3rd (of 28)

Through its offices regulated in major global financial centers, CMC Markets offers traders a wide range of offerings with excellent pricing and its Next Generation trading platform, which is packed with innovative trading tools and charting.


  • Competitive spreads for all customer segments.
  • Largest selection of currency pairs in the industry (over 180).
  • Regulated in major financial centers and listed publicly in the UK.
  • Powerful charts and pattern recognition tools.


  • The range of tradable securities on CMC Markets' MT4 offering is limited to just 80 instruments.

Is CMC Markets Safe?

help 98
Trust Score

CMC Markets is considered low-risk, with an overall Trust Score of 98 out of 99. CMC Markets is publicly traded, does not operate a bank, and is authorised by four tier-1 regulators (high trust), two tier-2 regulator (average trust), and zero tier-3 regulators (low trust). CMC Markets is authorised by the following tier-1 regulators: Australian Securities & Investment Commission (ASIC), Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC), Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), and the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Learn more about Trust Score.

Regulations Comparison

FeatureCMC MarketsIGSaxo
Year Founded1989197419921999
Publicly Traded (Listed) Yes Yes No Yes
Bank No Yes Yes No
Tier-1 Licenses4664
Tier-2 Licenses2310
Tier-3 Licenses0000
Trust Score98999891

Commissions & Fees

Rank: 1st (of 28)

CMC Markets is our top pick in 2019, thanks to its low spread offering, which is available to all its customer segments and account types.


  • CMC Markets offers highly competitive pricing, with average spreads on the EUR/USD as low as 0.7 pips and typical spreads of 0.744 pips, according to CMC Markets price data for the 30 days ending September, 2018.
  • CMC Markets also offers liquidity rebates to active traders that surpass at least £50 million in notional trading volumes per month, with rebate levels ranging from £5 to as much as £10 per million for those that trade even higher volumes.


  • Up to certain position thresholds which vary depending on the instrument you trade, CMC Markets offers a Guaranteed Stop-Loss Order (GSLO), which, as its name implies, guarantees the stop-loss order rate clients choose when setting risk thresholds on their positions. There is a premium for using the GSLO – for example, $8 per 100,000 units using the EUR/USD, and the GSLO also affects the prime margin, which is the amount at risk specified in the GLSO based on the rate chosen.


Further Reading

Fees Comparison

FeatureCMC MarketsIGSaxo
Minimum Initial Deposit$0.00£250.00$2,000.00$250.00
Average Spread EUR/USD - Standard0.7440.7500.9000.770
All-in Cost EUR/USD - Active0.7440.3630.6000.700
Active Trader or VIP Discounts Yes Yes Yes Yes
Commissions & Fees 5 Stars 4.5 Stars 4.5 Stars 4.5 Stars

Platforms & Tools

Rank: 6th (of 28)

The CMC Markets Next Generation trading platform is fast, reliable, and comes packed with several unique tools and numerous features to support traders of all skill levels.


  • The Next Generation platform is built entirely using HTML5, making it fast, flexible, and reliable. For example, the trade ticket design is simple, yet it can be easily expanded to add stops and limits as well as to see the depth of book (level 2) pricing.
  • When it comes to charting, the experience is quite powerful as there are plenty of tools and a long list of 81 technical indicators and studies that can be added to each chart.
  • Another feature that stands out from the charting experience is the pattern-recognition tool, which offers traders numerous options for trading and analyzing price action. Patterns auto-adjust when the chart time-scale is changed, enabling traders to scan from a one-minute chart all the way to a monthly chart, and see any respective patterns identified.
  • The sentiment tool, available to live account holders, provides a clean experience to quickly gauge the sentiment of all traders as well as only the top traders.
  • MetaTrader 4 (MT4) is also available as an alternative platform.


  • The current version of the Next Generation platform doesn’t feature the ability to run automated trading strategies – even though pattern recognition and social-trading tools are available.


Further Reading

Tools Comparison

FeatureCMC MarketsIGSaxo
Virtual Trading (Demo) Yes Yes Yes Yes
Proprietary Platform Yes Yes Yes Yes
Desktop Platform (Windows) Yes Yes Yes Yes
Web Platform Yes Yes Yes Yes
Social Trading / Copy-Trading Yes Yes Yes Yes
MetaTrader 4 (MT4) Yes Yes No Yes
MetaTrader 5 (MT5) No No No No
cTrader No No No No
Charting - Indicators / Studies (Total)812247139
Charting - Drawing Tools (Total)24171722
Charting - Trade From Chart Yes Yes Yes Yes
Watchlists - Total Fields8121211
Order Type - Trailing Stop Yes Yes Yes Yes
Platform & Tools 4.5 Stars 4.5 Stars 4.5 Stars 4 Stars

Customer Service

Rank: 6th (of 28)

To score Customer Service, partnered with customer experience research group Customerwise to conduct phone tests from locations throughout the UK. For our 2019 Review, 229 customer service tests were conducted over six weeks.


  • Average Connection Time: <1 minute
  • Average Net Promoter Score: 7.0 / 10
  • Average Professionalism Score: 5.0 / 10
  • Overall Score: 6.8 / 10
  • Ranking: 6th (23 brokers)
  • View Infographic


Rank: 5th (of 28)

CMC Markets’ research offering is rich with content, including its Insights News, CMC Markets Blog, CMC TV, and even its own print magazine called Opto.


  • Alongside a large selection of in-house market commentary, external content is streamed within the platform from Reuters.
  • Traders can also access additional tools within the platform, including pattern recognition software and client sentiment tools – both of which are available to live account holders.
  • The market calendar window provides a countdown to the time when each economic news event is expected to be released – a very neat feature to help traders prepare in advance.
  • The company also launched a magazine in 2018.


  • None.


Further Reading

Research Comparison

FeatureCMC MarketsIGSaxo
Daily Market Commentary Yes Yes Yes Yes
Forex News (Top-Tier Sources) Yes Yes Yes Yes
Weekly Webinars Yes Yes Yes Yes
AutoChartist No Yes Yes Yes
Trading Central (Recognia) Yes No No Yes
Delkos Research No No No Yes
Social Trading / Copy-Trading Yes Yes Yes Yes
Social Sentiment - Currency Pairs Yes Yes Yes Yes
Economic Calendar Yes Yes Yes Yes
Research 4.5 Stars 4.5 Stars 4.5 Stars 4.5 Stars

Mobile Trading

Rank: 7th (of 28)

The CMC Markets’ mobile app provides traders a positive experience as the app is cleanly designed and comes packed with research tools, powerful charts, and filters to scan products by asset class.


  • The overall look and feel of the CMC Markets mobile app closely resembles the web-based version of the Next Generation platform, while the user interface does well in dealing with the challenge of organizing so much information with limited screen space. What CMC Markets has accomplished is impressive and it shows the broker has taken its time during development.
  • Like much of the rest of the app, charting was just as impressive as the platform’s web version. Although only 23 of the 81 technical indicators are available on the mobile app, it’s still a good offering compared to many of CMC Markets’ competitors, which often lack variety or have no technical indicators on their mobile apps at all.
  • In terms of choosing from the nearly 10,000 products available, CMC Markets manages to keep the process simple, as users can search the product library where products are grouped by asset class, or they can start off with a blank search by product name.
  • For research purposes, another useful feature in the app is the economic calendar where you can subscribe to an event. Doing so automatically creates an alert so you can be notified when the news release time approaches. There is also CMC TV, CMC Insights, the broker’s blog, Reuters News, educational content for trading strategies, and the Trading Smart series.


  • While the charting experience was impressive, one minor drawback is that zooming in and out across different time frames was not always fluid.


Further Reading

Mobile Apps Comparison

FeatureCMC MarketsIGSaxo
Android App Yes Yes Yes Yes
Apple iOS App Yes Yes Yes Yes
Trading - Forex Yes Yes Yes Yes
Trading - CFDs Yes Yes Yes Yes
Alerts - Basic Fields Yes Yes Yes Yes
Watch List Yes Yes Yes Yes
Watch List Syncing Yes Yes Yes Yes
Charting - Indicators / Studies23264113
Charting - Draw Trend Lines Yes Yes Yes Yes
Charting - Trend Lines Moveable Yes Yes Yes Yes
Charting - Multiple Time Frames Yes Yes Yes Yes
Charting - Drawings Autosave Yes Yes Yes Yes
Forex Calendar Yes Yes Yes Yes
Mobile Trading 4 Stars 4 Stars 4.5 Stars 4 Stars

Offering of Investments

Rank: 6th (of 28)

The following table summarizes the different investment products available to CMC Markets clients.

Offering Comparison

FeatureCMC MarketsIGSaxo
Forex: Spot Trading Yes Yes Yes Yes
Currency Pairs (Total Forex pairs)1839118284
CFDs - Total Offered99591500032999220
Cryptocurrency traded as actual No No No No
Cryptocurrency traded as CFD Yes Yes No Yes
Offering of Investments 4 Stars 4.5 Stars 4.5 Stars 4 Stars

Final Thoughts

Rank: 3rd (of 28)

CMC Markets is a great choice for Forex and CFD traders as the company’s Next Generation platform is powerful and versatile with plenty of configuration options and tools for traders to customize the platform to meet their needs.

With nearly 10,000 instruments to choose from across nearly every asset class and global market, CMC Markets is a great choice for traders looking for a multi-asset solution and broad range CFDs and forex pairs at competitive prices.


For our 2019 Forex Broker Review we assessed, rated, and ranked 28 international forex brokers. Each broker was graded on 81 different variables and, in total, over 60,000 words of research were produced.

While encouraged, broker participation was optional. Each broker had the opportunity to complete an in-depth data profile and provide executive time (live in person or over the web) for an annual update meeting.

All data submitted by brokers is hand-checked for accuracy. Ultimately, our rigorous data validation process yields an error rate of less than .1% each year, providing site visitors quality data they can trust. Learn more about how we test.

Forex Risk Disclaimer

"There is a very high degree of risk involved in trading securities. With respect to margin-based foreign exchange trading, off-exchange derivatives, and cryptocurrencies, there is considerable exposure to risk, including but not limited to, leverage, creditworthiness, limited regulatory protection and market volatility that may substantially affect the price, or liquidity of a currency or related instrument. It should not be assumed that the methods, techniques, or indicators presented in these products will be profitable, or that they will not result in losses." Learn more.

Steven Hatzakis

About the author: Steven Hatzakis Steven Hatzakis is the Global Director of Research for Steven previously served as an Editor for Finance Magnates, where he authored over 1,000 published articles about the online finance industry. Steven is an active fintech and crypto industry researcher and advises blockchain companies at the board level. Over the past 20 years, Steven has held numerous positions within the international forex markets, from writing to consulting to serving as a registered commodity futures representative.

Trading CFDs, FX, and cryptocurrencies involves a high degree of risk. All providers have a percentage of retail investor accounts that lose money when trading CFDs with their company. You should consider whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money and whether you understand how CFDs, FX, and cryptocurrencies work. All data was obtained from a published web site as of 02/18/2019 and is believed to be accurate, but is not guaranteed. The staff is constantly working with its online broker representatives to obtain the latest data. If you believe any data listed above is inaccurate, please contact us using the link at the bottom of this page.

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