XTB Broker Review
XTB Broker Review - Overview
XTB is a sophisticated broker for sophisticated traders. Their ‘Pro’ account type is aimed at traders of larger accounts, who are happy to pay a small commission on trades to get absolutely rock-bottom spreads. They are FCA regulated which means that up to £50,000 of your money is protected in the Financial Services Compensation Scheme - great if you have a larger account. Their proprietary front end is tremendously powerful, with all of the draw tools and indicators you could want. They have their own analysis suite that analyses your trades with features like percentages of winners and losers on various instruments - something that is very rare indeed in proprietary broker software. Moreover, the Pro Account is a Straight Through Processing (STP) account, meaning that your trades are passed to the market rather than held by the broker themselves. This is something that is very attractive to larger clients who may worry about having stops shaken out by their B Book broker - not a problem here!
XTB Broker Review - Products and Spreads
XTB offer a good range of products, only really missing the least common 3 of our basket. They are well stocked with Forex, Indices and Commodities and have a tremendous amount of equities from around Europe and the US on offer. Unless you are trading smallcap companies or very exotic currency pairs, they should have you covered.
Their spreads are interesting. Their ‘basic’ account, which is only available to UK and Ireland users, is a B Book concept with high spreads, and is not the account we are looking at here. Their ‘Pro’ account is something different altogether. They are one of the few remaining brokers who still do a hybrid spreads+commission model, but if you have a large account this could work in your favour. On EURUSD, for instance, they have spreads of 0.2 (which is very very low) but you pay £2.50 in commission per contract traded. If you have a larger account size then this commission won’t be a problem as it will become a proportionately smaller chunk of your trade risk and reward. Paying a higher spread could become much more costly for you.
Equally, the reasons for this commission based structure are to be found in the STP nature of XTB’s business. They pass your trade on to the market, via a liquidity provider, and likely pay a fee for this - your fee covers their fee and ensures that you have Direct Market Access.
XTB Broker Review - Interface and Platforms
XTBs upgraded xStation 5 is quite simply the most sophisticated CFD trading platform on the market. It runs CMC Markets very close for sheer ascetics but it comes into its own when the tools offered are considered. As well as the full array of draw tools, measuring tools and indicators, they also go one step further, market sentiment analysis and personal performance measurement. This last is, as far as I am aware, unique in the CFD world. It offers what is effectively a live trading journal right in your broker account that tells you your win:loss ratios, average trade duration, profitable trade sequences and more - all from within your broker platform!
They have also implemented a number of other cool features, such as the ability to set Orders by clicking on the chart. You can see on your chart where you want to place your entry or exit, why bother going into a separate trading window to place the order? With xStation 5 you can place that trade directly on the chart - boom! There are a multitude of other features, too numerous to mention here, but suffice to say that I am very impressed by the power of their platform.
Some people may not like the inability to pop out extra windows, but CMC has the same drawback and is routinely mentioned as the best platform on the market. It is no surprise that xStation 5 was awared the Best Trading Platform 2016 award by the Online Personal Wealth Awards, amongst a host of other wins.
XTB Broker Review - Service
XTB are originally a Polish company but they are now truly global in nature. With UK offices as well as offices all around Europe you won’t struggle to get hold of them and you should be able to speak to someone in your native language if it is remotely mainstream. You get a personal account manager and a customer service helpline that runs whenever the markets are open, 24/5. They even have an open-door policy - you can genuinely go and visit their office!
XTB Broker Review - Safety
XTB is regulated by the FCA as well as a handful of other jurisdictions and can be viewed as a large, well-capitalised broker with solid regulation. They publicise that they hold all client money in segregated accounts, a key point in case of anything disastrous hitting the markets. They are listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange, and publically listed companies are always, to my mind, likely to be held to higher standards than private companies, so it is a nice bonus.
XTB Broker Review - Conclusion
XTB are a sophisticated broker with a highly powerful front end and a good array of markets. The tools they offer are second to none and the news alerts plus onhand economic calendar are nice touches. They are an STP broker and all of your trades are sent to the market, which is a definite plus for many traders. Their spreads + commission model is unusual and doesn’t suit all traders, particularly those with smaller accounts, but could reap benefits for larger account holders. Overall, XTB are a very well performing broker that have a lot going for them and would be a great choice for sophisticated traders or traders with larger account sizes.