IC Markets Review 2021
For this IC Markets review, we opened a live account and deposited over €5,000.
We traded the popular instrument in each market to identify the actual spreads and placed 12 trades in total.
We contacted the broker’s customer support team to resolve the challenges we faced.
Finally, we withdrew our funds to discover if the withdrawal process was smooth.
What is IC Markets
IC Markets is an Australian Forex and CFDs broker founded in 2007 headquartered in Sydney, Australia.
The broker is licensed in Australia, Cyprus, Seychelles and The Bahamas.
IC Markets offers hundreds of tradable instruments in the following categories, Forex pairs, indices, stocks, commodities and cryptocurrencies.
The broker offers a diverse range of products compared to its competitors.
Here’s a summary of IC Markets’ main features:
|🗺️ Authorised & Regulated in||Australia, Cyprus, Seychelles, Bahamas|
|🛡️ Is IC Markets safe||Yes|
|💰 EUR/USD Spread||1.02|
|💳 Minimum deposit||US$200|
|💰 Withdrawal fee||$0|
|🖥️ Trading Platform||Meta Trader 4, Meta Trader 5, cTrader|
|📈 Markets offered||Forex, Indices, Stocks, Commodities, Cryptocurrencies|
|📉 Number of Products||559|
Licenses and Regulations
IC Markets is licensed by 4 regulators worldwide, including the top-tier Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC), Seychelles’ Financial Services Authority (FSA) and The Securities Commission of The Bahamas (SCB).
Here’s a full list of the licenses held by IC Markets’ subsidiaries:
|Legal entity||Registered in||Regulator||License Number||Accepting Clients From||Compensation Scheme Amount|
|International Capital Markets Pty Ltd||Australia||Australian Financial Services License (AFSL)||335692||Australia||No compensation scheme|
|IC Markets (EU) Ltd||Cyprus||Cyprus Securities & Exchange Commission (CySEC)||362/18||EU||€20,000|
|Raw Trading Ltd||Seychelles||Financial Services Authority (FSA)||SD018||Globally many countries||No compensation scheme|
|IC Markets International||Bahamas||The Securities Commission of The Bahamas (SCB)||Globally many countries||No compensation scheme|
Is IC Markets Safe
Yes, IC Markets is safe to trade. The broker is regulated by the top-tier ASIC, which has stringent rules and enforcement mechanisms. The broker is also licensed by Cyprus’ CySEC, Seychelles’ FSA and The Bahamas’ SCB.
The CySEC guarantees investors’ deposit compensation of up to €20,000 if the broker goes bankrupt. Traders have to be registered under the Cypriot entity to qualify for compensation in case of bankruptcy.
We did not encounter any major challenges when trading with IC Markets.
For this review, we opened a standard MT5 account with IC Markets (EU) Limited, licensed by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC). We deposited money into the account, placed trades, and later withdrew our funds.
We recommend that you open your account with the Australian or Cyprus entities if either is available to you. While Australia’s ASIC does not offer deposit compensation, it is regarded as a tier 1 regulator because of its stringent rules.
On the other hand, the CySEC offers deposit protection of up to €20,000 if the broker becomes insolvent.
Fees and Commissions
IC Markets charges low fees for trading most of the main instruments on offer. The fees charged for trading Forex pairs, indices, commodities and cryptocurrencies were much lower than industry averages.
However, the average spreads charged on stock trades were in line with industry charges.
Most of the account types offered by IC Markets have very low spreads and do not charge a commission. Only the Raw Spread Account charges a commission.
Spread Charged in our Trades
In our tests, we traded the most popular instrument in each market. We placed 3 trades per instrument to get an accurate estimate of the average spread. We tested IC Markets’ Standard Account on the MT5 platform, which charges a spread on all instruments. The spreads were generally low, as detailed in the table below.
|Markets||Instruments||1st trade||2nd trade||3rd trade||Avg. Spread|
We executed all our trades via the MetaTrader 5 mobile app on our iPhone.
A deeper look at the spreads charged in our trades revealed that they were mostly below industry standards. Only the average stock trading spreads were in-line with industry benchmarks.
|Markets||Instruments||Avg. Spread Charged||Industry Avg. Spread|
IC Markets does not charge any other non-trading fees such as deposit and withdrawal fees or account inactivity fees.
IC Markets offers 4 account types with slightly different features. The accounts are known as the standard account, cTrader raw spread account, the raw spread account, and the Islamic account.
See the differences below:
|Standard Account||CTrader Raw Spread Account||Raw Spread Account||Islamic Account|
|Trading Platforms||MetaTrader 4 & 5||MetaTrader 4 & 5, CTrader||MetaTrader 4 & 5||MetaTrader 4 & 5|
|Account Currency||USD, EUR, GBP, AUD, CAD, SGD, NZD, JPY, CHF, HKD||USD, EUR, GBP, AUD, CAD, SGD, NZD, JPY, CHF, HKD||USD, EUR, GBP, AUD, CAD, SGD, NZD, JPY, CHF, HKD||USD, EUR, GBP, AUD, CAD, SGD, NZD, JPY, CHF, HKD|
|Minimum Deposit||$/€/£ 200||$/€/£ 200||$/€/£ 200||$/€/£ 200|
|Commission||$7 per lot|
|Order Execution||Instant Execution||Instant Execution||Instant Execution||Instant Execution|
|Spread||From 1||From 0||From 0||From 0|
|Note||The Islamic account is offered to clients of Muslim faith only|
IC Markets offers swap-free Islamic Accounts to Muslim clients only. These accounts do not attract a swap fee for positions held overnight. However, trades held for more than 3 nights attract an administration fee.
For our tests, we chose to open the Standard MT5 Account.
IC Markets account opening is quick and seamless. We went through the entire process, and completed it digitally.
Here are the 5 steps to opening an IC Markets account:
- Enter your full name, country of residence, mobile phone number, and email address.
- Choose your account type, enter your date of birth and address including the city, state/province and ZIP code.
- Select your trading platform, account type, and choose the base currency of your account.
- Provide your trading experience, select your security question and input the answer.
- Enter your employment information, source of wealth, trading experience, investment objectives and goals and your risk tolerance.
- Verify your account.
The registration process took exactly 14 minutes, and our account was approved in one working day.
We were asked to provide the front and back pictures of our National ID/ Passport/ Drivers’ License.
We also provided a utility bill as proof of residence accompanied by a credit card/ bank statement as an additional verification document.
For this test, we opened the Standard MT5 Account with IC Markets (EU) Limited, which is regulated by the CySEC.
Deposit and Withdrawal
IC Markets offers free and fast deposits and withdrawals. Traders can deposit and withdraw from their accounts using the following payment methods, bank transfers, credit and debit cards, and e-wallets such as Skrill, PayPal, and Neteller.
The broker charges a high fee of AUD $20 for international bank withdrawals.
IC Markets has a minimum deposit requirement of $/€/£ 200 on all accounts.
IC Markets’ clients can deposit funds into their trading accounts via bank transfers, debit/credit cards, and e-wallets such as Skrill, PayPal, and Neteller.
The table below shows the details of our deposits:
|Payment Method||Submitted Date||Funded Account Date||Funding Time||Fee|
|Skrill||11 March 2021||11 March 2021||Instant||€0.00|
|Monese||10 March 2021||10 March 2021||Instant||€0.00|
|PayPal||11 March 2021||11 March 2021||Instant||€0.00|
|Neteller||11 March 2021||11 March 2021||Instant||€0.00|
IC Markets does not charge fees on all deposit methods.
IC Markets allows its clients to make withdrawals via the same payment methods available for deposits making it easy for investors to access their funds.
IC Markets does charge an AUD $20 fee on international bank transfer withdrawals.
|Payment Method||Submitted Date||Funds Released Date||Funds Arrived Date||Withdrawal Time||Fee|
|Credit card||15 March 2021||16 March 2021||17 March 2021||2 working days||zero|
|Skrill||12 March 2021||15 March 2021||15 March 2021||1 working day||zero|
|PayPal||11 March 2021||11 March 2021||11 March 2021||3 hours||zero|
|Neteller||15 March 2021||16 March 2021||16 March 2021||1 working day||zero|
We did not have any challenges during the withdrawal process, which was quite smooth.
Markets and Products
IC Markets offers a wide variety of tradable instruments in the Forex, indices, stocks, commodities and cryptocurrencies markets.
Here’s the complete list of IC Markets’ product offering:
The broker’s collection of stock CFDs is quite substantial. However, traders registered under IC Markets (EU) Ltd do not have access to cryptocurrencies.
The trading conditions at IC Markets are great. Traders can execute most trading strategies since the broker allows high-risk strategies such as hedging and scalping.
IC Markets also allows traders to use Expert Advisors (EAs). The broker notes on its website that majority of the trades executed by its clients are done via automated systems.
There are no time limits for how long traders can keep their hedging positions open.
IC Markets offers its clients different leverage levels based on the entity under which they registered their account.
Traders are also allowed to change their account’s leverage levels after registration.
The table below shows the different leverage levels available to clients:
|Markets||International Capital Markets Pty Ltd||IC Markets (EU) Ltd||Raw Trading Ltd|
|Major Currency Pairs||30:1||30:1||500:1|
|Non-major Currency Pairs||20:1||20:1||500:1|
|Exotic Currency Pairs||100:1||20:1||100:1|
|Other Commodities (except gold)||10:1||10:1||500:1|
|Shares or other assets||5:1||5:1||20:1|
IC Markets does not offer bonuses to its clients.
IC Markets offers the popular MetaTrader 4 (MT4) and MetaTrader 5 (MT5) platforms to its clients. Clients can access the two platforms via the desktop and mobile MT4 and MT5 applications. The broker also offers the cTrader platform as well as copy-trading systems attached to each platform.
Algorithmic traders will find a home with IC Markets, which offers fast execution speeds and guarantees no requotes on submitted trades. The broker’s cTrader platform offers the cAlgo app that algorithmic traders can use. The cTrader Copy app allows for social copy trading.
Traders who prefer a modern platform should try the MT5 platform since the MT4 platform is a bit dated.
Research and Tools
IC Markets provides market research via the features found on the MetaTrader platforms. Clients have access to technical research from Trading Central.
The broker also has a market analysis section that contains technical and fundamental analysis from its in-house experts covering different instruments.
IC Markets has a distinct lack of in-depth video content, which could be a major drawback for traders who learn better via video lessons. The broker also does not provide any fundamental data to its clients; hence, they rely on other sources to catch the latest macro releases.
MetaTrader’s charting resources are okay, but the platform’s design and functionality are a bit outdated.
The broker also has a news feed section called Market Buzz, which delivers news from other websites, but can get crowded with persona tweets.
IC Markets offers a great forex trading course for beginners that covers topics such as technical analysis and trading psychology. The broker provides over a dozen articles under each category.
Traders can also open a demo account to practice trading on the broker’s platforms and test their trading strategies. The broker also provides tutorials on how to use its platform as well as general educational videos.
However, the videos are located in the broker’s video channel instead of on its website, which can be quite confusing.
IC Markets’ education offering lacks depth, and we would like to see the broker add more content on intermediate and advanced topics. We would also like to see the broker increase the amount of video content to match some of its competitors.
IC Markets’ customer service team was quite helpful and gave us direct but sometimes inaccurate answers to our questions. Our first interaction with the team was via live chat, where we asked about the instruments we could trade via our MT5 account.
We received a prompt response, but the customer support agent seemed unsure about the answer. It took a while for the agent to confirm that we could trade the instruments we had asked about. The answer was not as instant as we had expected.
You can reach the IC Markets customer support team via email and live chat. Our second query was via email where we wanted to know when our account would be approved.
The broker responded quite fast and asked us to submit the query via our registered email, which we had already done. They later apologised and quickly approved our account.
Again, we saw that the support agents were struggling with information that should be easy to find, but they always got it right in the end.
Here are the results of our test below:
|Question||Response Time||Quality of reply|
|Live chat||Does MT5 account contain EURUSD, Gold, FTSE 100, Stocks and Crytocurrencies?||We reached a support agent within 3 minutes.||It was accurate in the end.|
|When will our trading account be approved?||We received feedback within 20 minutes.||It was accurate in the end.|
Overall, our experience with IC Markets was good. The forex broker provides relatively low spreads and breakneck execution speeds.
We recommend the broker for traders who run scalping, hedging, and automated trading strategies. The broker offers a wide range of deposit and withdrawal methods that are instant and free.
The broker’s customer support team was quite responsive and finally resolved our issues.
We also recommend IC Markets to all levels of traders from beginners, intermediate and advanced traders who can all benefit from its services.
Author of this review
By George Rossi
Author of this review
I am a well-rounded financial services professional experienced in fundamental and technical analysis, global macroeconomic research, foreign exchange and commodity markets and an independent trader.
Now I am passionate about reviewing and comparing forex brokers.
Everything you find on BrokerTested is based on reliable data and unbiased information. We combine our 10+ years finance experience with readers feedback. Read more about our methodology