IG Markets Review

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IG Markets Review

Gauge for goods sold at retail outlets in the past month. Retail Sales is a leading indicator for the economy. Rising consumer spending fuels economic growth, confirms signals from consumer confidence, and may spark inflationary pressures.

The headline figure is expressed as the percentage change from the same month last year.

Forecast

Importance

3.8% Reading 4.4%

The percentage of individuals in the labor force who are without a job but actively seeking one. A higher Unemployment Rate is generally a drain on the economy. Not only does it mean that resources are not being fully utilized, but it also results in lower consumer spending as there are fewer workers receiving paychecks.

Note: The unemployment rate generally moves slowly, so changes of only a few tenths of a percent are still considered significant. Also note that the unemployment rate does not account for discouraged workers. Therefore, in an economically depressed environment, such as that which occurred in Cold War era East Germany, the Unemployment Rate may not accurately reflect the extent of problems.

Forecast

Importance

-100K Reading -701K

One of the most widely anticipated reports on the US economic calendar, the Employment Situation is a timely report that gives a picture of job creation, loss, wages and working hours in the United States. Data in the report relies on the Household Survey and the Establishment (or Payroll) Survey. While the Household Survey is based on the interviews to US households, the Establishment Survey queries business establishments, making it the preferred source of data. The Employment Situation’s has many significant figures such as: Change in Non Farm Payrolls, Unemployment, Manufacturing Payrolls, and Average Hourly Earnings.

The headline figures for this report are reported monthly, as the total number of new jobs in thousands (say, 120K new jobs), and the unemployment rate.

Change in Non-farm Payrolls

Monthly change in employment excluding the farming sector. Non-farm payrolls is the most closely watched indicator in the Employment Situation, considered the most comprehensive measure of job creation in the US. Such a distinction makes the NFP figure highly significant, given the importance of labor to the US economy. Specifically, political pressures come into play, as the Fed is responsible for keeping employment in a healthy range and utilizes interest rate changes to do so. A surge in new Non-farm Payrolls suggests rising employment and potential inflation pressures, which the Fed often counters with rate increases. On the other hand, a consistent decline in Non-farm Employment suggests a slowing economy, which makes a decline in rates more likely.

IG.com Review Visit site

Was at IGMarkets.com. Other websites of this company include IGForex.com, IGI ndex.co.uk.

About IG.com

IG is a forex broker. IG offers the WebTrader and MT4 trading currency platforms. IG.com offer over 100 forex currency pairs, cfds, commodities, stocks, index, gold, silver, oil, bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies for your personal investment and trading options.

  • Information
  • Live Discussion
  • Profile
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Broker Details

Minimum Trade Size: 0.01
Maximum Leverage: 200:1
Minimum to Open Live: $250
Established: 1974
Address: Cannon Bridge House, 25 Dowgate Hill, London, EC4R 2YA, United Kingdom
Contact: [email protected], (44) 207 896 0079
Regional offices:
Regulators: ASIC #AFSL 220440, FSCA #FSP 41393, DFSA #F001780, FCA #195355 / 114059, NFA #0509630
Prohibited countries:

Yes

Yes

Yes

Trading platforms: MT4, IG Web and Mobile Platform, ProRealTime
Web Trading:
Mobile Trading:
ECN:
Currencies: (105+)
Cryptocurrencies: (10+) Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum
CFD: (16000+) Gold, Silver, Stocks, Stock Indexes, Bonds, Bond Indexes, Oil, Other Commodities

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

EAs/Robots:
News Spike Trading:
Scalping:
MAM:
PAMM:
Deposit Methods: Bank Wire, VISA, MasterCard, PayPal
Withdrawal Methods: Bank Wire, VISA, MasterCard, PayPal

Live discussion

Join live discussion of IG.com on our forum

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IG.com profile provided by IG Group, May 13, 2020

The world’s No.1 spread betting and CFD provider*

Our vision
We aim to be a global leader in retail trading and investments. With a strong focus on innovation and technology, we put client needs at the heart of everything we do. This enables us to empower informed, decisive, adventurous people to access opportunities in over 15,000 financial markets.

24-hour support
Our highly trained team is available 24 hours a day from 8am on Sunday until 10pm on Friday, and from 9am to 5pm on Saturday UK time.

Powerful technology
Our intuitive platforms and apps are built for speed and security. We offer a fully customisable award-winning web platform, natively designed mobile and tablet apps, as well as a range of advanced third-party tools.

A global leader in online trading
We are the world-leading provider of contracts for difference (CFDs) and financial spread betting, and the UK’s largest retail forex provider.* We also offer execution-only share dealing, along with fully managed investment portfolios. With over 40 years’ experience behind us, we’re perfectly placed to help you make the most of the markets. *Based on revenue excluding FX (from published financial statements, October 2020). Losses can exceed deposits.

IG Review

IG offers an excellent fit for both small traders and market professionals

Investopedia is committed to rigorous editorial standards to provide our readers with the best advice and recommendations. We may receive compensation when you click on links to products we reviewed. Learn more about our methodology and review process.

  • Account Minimum: $0
  • Fees: Minimum of 0.6 pips for EUR/USD
  • Bestfor: Forex Trading

Disclosure

Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 81% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading spread bets and CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how spread bets and CFDs work, and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. Professional clients can lose more than they deposit. All trading involves risk.

IG Group was founded in 1974 and is currently ranked as the world’s top CFD provider. Their extensive product catalog and competitive fees aren’t surprising, given longstanding business operations and an excellent industry reputation. IG recently entered the U.S. market and will be competing with two other major players that are already solidly entrenched in the U.S.

IG currently ranks in the following category:

A well­ organized and easy-­to-­navigate website contains fully­ disclosed services and fees, unlike competitors who often hide the bad stuff in fine print. The broker is working hard to upgrade qualified retail clients to a professional designation that allows higher leverage and direct market access (DMA) to the forex interbank system.

Industry standard MetaTrader 4 (Windows and Mac)

Guaranteed stop losses

Thousands of markets

May incur exchange and subscription fees

Dormant account fees

Retail clients can’t trade forex on interbank

No copy/social trading platform

Trust

The broker is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the U.K. and the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) in Australia. U.K. traders have broker default protection up to GBP 50,000 through Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) but no additional insurance coverage is provided. Site encryption is average.

Client funds are segregated from company funds, reducing the potential for misuse, but the fine print says they can hold funds outside local jurisdictions, increasing risk in case of a bank default. They operate a counterparty dealing desk, raising conflict of interest issues, but higher-end clients can trade directly with the interbank system through a dedicated platform. They provide guaranteed stop-losses for an additional fee while negative balance protection is now mandated under ESMA rules.

Desktop Experience

IG offers an excellent variety of platform choices and API interfaces, starting with the industry standard MetaTrader 4. No MetaTrader 5 is available but clients can upgrade to the ProRealTime advanced charting platform for free as long as they meet modest monthly trading activity requirements. The web-­based IG Trading platform features basic risk management tools, including price alerts and stop-losses. It also streams Reuters news and ProRealTime charts, including the ability to split charts into multiple time frames.

Higher-end clients can attach their own software or a Bloomberg terminal through a well­-developed API interface. They can also trade CFD shares and forex through L2 Dealer, which provides direct market access (DMA) that bypasses IG’s dealing desk. Forex Direct service on that platform requires that clients have professional designation under ESMA rules. There’s no additional charge for this service other than exchange fees.

Mobile Experience

IG provides home­grown mobile apps for iOS and Android that can also be loaded on tablets. Basic features include customized watchlists, price alerts, and technical charting. The indicator list is comprehensive but omitted from the menu structure, reducing accessibility. The Trade menu lacks sophisticated conditional orders but clients can place trailing and guaranteed stop-losses. A useful signals “menu” features third-party buy and sell signals. All apps lack customization but they offer Face ID and Touch ID security and are more advanced than the industry ­standard MT 4 mobile.

Research Tools and Insights

IG operates the DailyFX.com website, providing comprehensive news, research, and an educational portal with in-house analysts and hundreds of market topics that include intermediate technical and fundamental analysis. Real-­time news is produced in-house and covers major currency pairs. Multiple live webinars build trading skills, highlight key events, and identify news catalysts. A Trading Strategies section presents short-­term buy and sell signals, analyst picks, pivot points, and a host of technical data.

Education

The DailyFX Forex University is impressive, with course-based materials covering a comprehensive variety of forex and technical topics. The IG site has its own educational resources through IG Academy, covering CFDs and spread betting in addition to forex trading. The material is broader in nature but equally useful, with segmentation between beginner, intermediate, and advanced topics. Clients can also access courses and articles through the handy IG Academy mobile app. It’s odd that broker site integration with DailyFX.com is poor—except for the live seminar section, and it’s possible that prospective clients won’t realize this excellent resource exists.

Special Features

The IG Community site has active forums and numerous trade picks through forum entries and blog posts. @IGSquawk on Twitter contains over 18­ thousand tweets from IG dealers sharing news and client sentiment. There’s no dedicated or third-party social platform, unlike many competitors, and the broker site contains no client positioning data for CFDs, forex, or spread bets. However, IG Client Sentiment at DailyFX.Com provides useful forex positioning data, updated in real­-time. It would be beneficial to clients if this information was integrated into the broker site.

Guaranteed stop-losses are available for most markets, lowering catastrophic risk, but the order requires a modest fee in addition to spreads and/or commissions. The broker also offers a variety of professional and institutional services, well above the industry average. Professionals will appreciate direct market access (DMA) that bypasses the dealing desk while accounts at all levels can invest for the long term through IG Smart Portfolios, an account basket that includes savings and retirement programs as well as low­-fee ETFs.

Investment Products

IG has built a comprehensive catalog of shares, currency pairs, indices, and commodities. Fees for CFDs and spread bets are identical in most cases, but there are exceptions. Futures and options are available on many instruments and clients will never have a problem finding something to trade. Coverage includes exotic and minor currency pairs while many commodities can be traded through spot markets or futures contracts. Differences between CFDs and spread betting, including tax implications, are clearly documented.

£250 is the minimum account deposit. They offer an aggressive rebate program for large forex volume as well as volume discounts for U.K. share traders. Margin and overnight lending rates are competitive. Accounts get charged steep monthly fees after two years of inactivity. The broker offers no fixed spreads or trading account tiers through the main site, other than retail vs. professional designation, but IG Smart Portfolios and a dedicated institutional site round out an impressive account listing.

They now offer six cryptocurrencies, traded as spread bets or CFDs, but Bitcoin’s high 40­-point spread could deter potential clients.

Commissions and Fees

Commissions, spreads, and fees are very competitive, with the EUR/USD average spread at 0.75 pips. They charge higher spreads on shares and indices during off-market hours and placing trades in those dead periods can be expensive. For example, the fee for a U.S. ­500 spread bet rises from 0.4 points during U.S. market hours to 0.9 points after the CME and NYSE close. This is partially offset by a minor 0.4­ point guaranteed stop-loss premium that doesn’t fluctuate during the market day.

Customer Support

IG customer service is available through a toll-free (U.K.) phone number from 8 a.m. Saturday to 10 p.m. Friday. Both prospective and active clients can talk to a company representative through live chat that’s available 24 hours per day. Three random contacts with this service were promptly answered. E­mail, social media, and a comprehensive FAQ round out above average contact options. If all else fails, a well-­documented customer complaint procedure should assist in grievance resolution.

What You Need to Know

IG offers an excellent fit for both small traders and market professionals, with competitive spreads, thousands of trading instruments, and a state-­of-­the-­art news, research, and educational portal. Clients can choose from an impressive variety of platform choices and easily upgrade as their accounts build equity. Despite major positives, client profitability rates need to be watched because recent data places the broker slightly below industry average.

Compare IG

Those interested in forex trading can find an excellent solution with IG. See how they compare against other online brokers we reviewed.

Methodology

Investopedia is dedicated to providing investors with unbiased, comprehensive reviews and ratings of online brokers. Our reviews are the result of six months of evaluating all aspects of an online broker’s platform, including the user experience, the quality of trade executions, the products available on their platforms, costs and fees, security, the mobile experience and customer service. We established a rating scale based on our criteria, collecting over 3,000 data points that we weighed into our star scoring system.

In addition, every broker we surveyed was required to fill out a 320-point survey about all aspects of their platform that we used in our testing. Many of the online brokers we evaluated provided us with in-person demonstrations of their platforms at our offices.

Our team of industry experts, led by Theresa W. Carey, conducted our reviews and developed this best-in-industry methodology for ranking online investing platforms for users at all levels. Click here to read our full methodology.

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