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How to Succeed with Binary Options Trading 2020
Welcome to the largest expert guide to binary options and binary trading online. BinaryOptions.net has educated traders globally since 2020 and all our articles are written by professionals who make a living in the finance industry and online trading. We have close to a thousand articles and reviews to guide you to be a more profitable trader in 2020 no matter what your current experience level is. If you wish to discuss trading or brokers with other traders, we also have the world’s largest forum with over 20 000 members and lots of daily activity. Read on to get started trading today!
What is a Binary Option and How Do You Make Money?
A binary option is a fast and extremely simple financial instrument which allows investors to speculate on whether the price of an asset will go up or down in the future, for example the stock price of Google, the price of Bitcoin, the USD/GBP exchange rate, or the price of gold. The time span can be as little as 60 seconds, making it possible to trade hundreds of times per day across any global market.
Before you place a trade you know exactly how much you stand to gain if your prediction is correct, usually 70-95% – if you invest $100 you will receive a credit of $170 – $195 on a successful trade. This makes risk management and trading decisions much more simple. The outcome is always a Yes or No answer – you either win it all or you lose it all – hence it being a “binary” option. The risk and reward is known in advance and this structured payoff is one of the attractions.
Exchange traded binaries are also now available, meaning traders are not trading against the broker.
To get started trading you first need a regulated broker account (or licensed). Pick one from the recommended brokers list, where only brokers that have shown themselves to be trustworthy are included. The top broker has been selected as the best choice for most traders.
If you are completely new to binary options you can open a demo account with most brokers, to try out their platform and see what it’s like to trade before you deposit real money.
Introduction Video – How to Trade Binary Options
These videos will introduce you to the concept of binary options and how trading works. If you want to know even more details, please read this whole page and follow the links to all the more in-depth articles. Binary trading does not have to be complicated, but as with any topic you can educate yourself to be an expert and perfect your skills.
Best Binary Options Broker 2020!
Ideal for beginners!
Free Demo Account + Free Trading Education!
Get a Sign-up Bonus:
2nd place in the ranking!
The most common type of binary option is the simple “Up/Down” trade. There are however, different types of option. The one common factor, is that the outcome will have a “binary” result (Yes or No). Here are some of the types available:
- Up/Down or High/Low – The basic and most common binary option. Will a price finish higher or lower than the current price a the time of expiry.
- In/Out, Range or Boundary – This option sets a “high” figure and “low” figure. Traders predict whether the price will finish within, or outside, of these levels (or ‘boundaries’).
- Touch/No Touch – These have set levels, higher or lower than the current price. The trader has to predict whether the actual price will ‘touch’ those levels at any point between the time of the trade an expiry.
Note with a touch option, that the trade can close before the expiry time – if the price level is touched before the option expires, then the “Touch” option will payout immediately, regardless of whether the price moves away from the touch level afterwards.
- Ladder – These options behave like a normal Up/Down trade, but rather than using the current strike price, the ladder will have preset price levels (‘laddered’ progressively up or down).These can often be some way from the current strike price.As these options generally need a significant price move, payouts will often go beyond 100% – but both sides of the trade may not be available.
How to Trade – Step by Step Guide
Below is a step by step guide to placing a binary trade:
- Choose a broker – Use our broker reviews and comparison tools to find the best binary trading site for you.
- Select the asset or market to trade – Assets lists are huge, and cover Commodities, Stocks, Cryptocurrency, Forex or Indices. The price of oil, or the Apple stock price, for example.
- Select the expiry time – Options can expire anywhere between 30 seconds up to a year.
- Set the size of the trade – Remember 100% of the investment is at risk so consider the trade amount carefully.
- Click Call / Put or Buy / Sell – Will the asset value rise or fall? Some broker label buttons differently.
- Check and confirm the trade – Many brokers give traders a chance to ensure the details are correct before confirming the trade.
Choose a Broker
Options fraud has been a significant problem in the past. Fraudulent and unlicensed operators exploited binary options as a new exotic derivative. These firms are thankfully disappearing as regulators have finally begun to act, but traders still need to look for regulated brokers.
Note! Don’t EVER trade with a broker or use a service that’s on our blacklist and scams page, stick with the ones we recommend here on the site. Here are some shortcuts to pages that can help you determine which broker is right for you:
- Compare all brokers – if you want to compare the features and offers of all recommended brokers.
- Bonuses and Offers – if you want to make sure you get extra money to trade with, or other promotions and offers.
- Low minimum deposit brokers – if you want to trade for real without having to deposit large sums of money.
- Demo Accounts – if you want to try a trading platform “for real” without depositing money at all.
- Halal Brokers – if you are one of the growing number of Muslim traders.
The number and diversity of assets you can trade varies from broker to broker. Most brokers provide options on popular assets such as major forex pairs including the EUR/USD, USD/JPY and GBP/USD, as well as major stock indices such as the FTSE, S&P 500 or Dow Jones Industrial. Commodities including gold, silver, oil are also generally offered.
Individual stocks and equities are also tradable through many binary brokers. Not every stock will be available though, but generally you can choose from about 25 to 100 popular stocks, such as Google and Apple. These lists are growing all the time as demand dictates.
The asset lists are always listed clearly on every trading platform, and most brokers make their full asset lists available on their website. This information is also available within our reviews, including currency pairs.
The expiry time is the point at which a trade is closed and settled. The only exception is where a ‘Touch’ option has hit a preset level prior to expiry. The expiry for any given trade can range from 30 seconds, up to a year. While binaries initially started with very short expiries, demand has ensured there is now a broad range of expiry times available. Some brokers even give traders the flexibility to set their own specific expiry time.
Expiries are generally grouped into three categories:
- Short Term / Turbo – These are normally classed as any expiry under 5 minutes
- Normal – These would range from 5 minutes, up to ‘end of day’ expiries which expire when the local market for that asset closes.
- Long term – Any expiry beyond the end of the day would be considered long term. The longest expiry might be 12 months.
While slow to react to binary options initially, regulators around the world are now starting to regulate the industry and make their presence felt. The major regulators currently include:
- Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) – UK regulator
- Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySec) – Cyprus Regulator, often ‘passported’ throughout the EU, under MiFID
- Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) – US regulator
- Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)
There are also regulators operating in Malta and the Isle of Man. Many other authorities are now taking a keen a interest in binaries specifically, notably in Europe where domestic regulators are keen to bolster the CySec regulation.
Unregulated brokers still operate, and while some are trustworthy, a lack of regulation is a clear warning sign for potential new customers.
Recently, ESMA (European Securities and Markets Authority) moved to ban the sale and marketing of binary options in the EU. The ban however, only applies to brokers regulated in the EU. This leaves traders two choices to keep trading: Firstly, they can trade with an unregulated firm – this is extremely high risk and not advisable. Some unregulated firms are responsible and honest, but many are not.
The second choice is to use a firm regulated by bodies outside of the EU. ASIC in Australia are a strong regulator – but they will not be implementing a ban. This means ASIC regulated firms can still accept EU traders. See our broker lists for regulated or trusted brokers in your region.
There is also a third option. Traders who register as ‘professional’ are exempt from the new ban. The ban is only designed to protect ‘retail’ investors. A professional trader can continue trading at EU regulated brokers such as IQ Option. To be classed as professional, an account holder must meet two of these three criteria:
- Open 10 or more trades per quarter, of €150 or more.
- Have assets of €500,000 or more
- Have worked for two years in a financial firm and have experience of financial products.
Is binary options trading legal in the USA?
Yes, trading binary options is legal in the US. The US binary options market is strictly regulated. These safeguards are in place to protect US residents, but trading is absolutely legal.
What is illegal, is for non-US based brokers (‘off shore’ brokers) to solicit US residents. It is this which has resulted in some binary options brokers receiving heavy fines, and the majority not accepting traders based in the USA. There are however, a number of options for US traders, where they can trade legally, at reputable brokers, fully regulated by the CFTC.
The US Binary options brokers list above, is tailored to display only brokers that accept US clients. Nadex and CBOE remain the only regulated exchanges however. The Nadex offering delivers binary options that mimic futures contracts more familiar to US pattern day traders.
Binary options trading in the USA
Most binary options brokers operate accounts in USD. This is seen as the ‘global currency’ within the binary options industry and therefore US clients are free to trade with funds in their local currency.
Binary options brokers will generally have their trading platform open when the market of the underlying asset is open. So if trading the NYSE, Nasdaq, DOW or S&P, the assets will be open to trade during the same hours as those markets are open. Any moves by the Federal reserve for example, will feed into binary markets immediately, just as you would expect.
Forex trading has no central market, and as such USD pairs can generally be traded around the clock for 5 days a week. Markets in Hong Kong, Europe and the US, mean that foreign currency can be traded 24 hours a day.
US Traders also have the option of using exchange traded binary options, or an over the counter (OTC) broker. So binary options trading in the US, generally delivers the same level of choice trading in Europe, but in a more closely regulated market.
Some of the links to third party websites included on our website are affiliate links. This means that we may receive commission or a fee if you click on a link that takes you through to a third party website or if you purchase a product from a third party website.
Strategies and Guides
We have a lot of detailed guides and strategy articles for both general education and specialized trading techniques. Below are a few to get you started if you want to learn the basic before you start trading. From Martingale to Rainbow, you can find plenty more on the strategy page.
Signals and Other Services
For further reading on signals and reviews of different services go to the signals page.
If you are totally new to the trading scene then watch this great video by Professor Shiller of Yale University who introduces the main ideas of options:
Education for beginners:
Types of Trades
How to Set Up a Trade
The ability to trade the different types of binary options can be achieved by understanding certain concepts such as strike price or price barrier, settlement, and expiration date. All trades have dates at which they expire.
When the trade expires, the behaviour of the price action according to the type selected will determine if it’s in profit (in the money) or in a loss position (out-of-the-money). In addition, the price targets are key levels that the trader sets as benchmarks to determine outcomes. We will see the application of price targets when we explain the different types.
There are three types of trades. Each of these has different variations. These are:
Let us take them one after the other.
Also called the Up/Down binary trade, the essence is to predict if the market price of the asset will end up higher or lower than the strike price (the selected target price) before the expiration. If the trader expects the price to go up (the “Up” or “High” trade), he purchases a call option. If he expects the price to head downwards (“Low” or “Down”), he purchases a put option. Expiry times can be as low as 5 minutes.
Please note: some brokers classify Up/Down as a different types, where a trader purchases a call option if he expects the price to rise beyond the current price, or purchases a put option if he expects the price to fall below current prices. You may see this as a Rise/Fall type on some trading platforms.
The In/Out type, also called the “tunnel trade” or the “boundary trade”, is used to trade price consolidations (“in”) and breakouts (“out”). How does it work? First, the trader sets two price targets to form a price range. He then purchases an option to predict if the price will stay within the price range/tunnel until expiration (In) or if the price will breakout of the price range in either direction (Out).
The best way to use the tunnel binaries is to use the pivot points of the asset. If you are familiar with pivot points in forex, then you should be able to trade this type.
This type is predicated on the price action touching a price barrier or not. A “Touch” option is a type where the trader purchases a contract that will deliver profit if the market price of the asset purchased touches the set target price at least once before expiry. If the price action does not touch the price target (the strike price) before expiry, the trade will end up as a loss.
A “No Touch” is the exact opposite of the Touch. Here you are betting on the price action of the underlying asset not touching the strike price before the expiration.
There are variations of this type where we have the Double Touch and Double No Touch. Here the trader can set two price targets and purchase a contract that bets on the price touching both targets before expiration (Double Touch) or not touching both targets before expiration (Double No Touch). Normally you would only employ the Double Touch trade when there is intense market volatility and prices are expected to take out several price levels.
Some brokers offer all three types, while others offer two, and there are those that offer only one variety. In addition, some brokers also put restrictions on how expiration dates are set. In order to get the best of the different types, traders are advised to shop around for brokers who will give them maximum flexibility in terms of types and expiration times that can be set.
Trading via your mobile has been made very easy as all major brokers provide fully developed mobile trading apps. Most trading platforms have been designed with mobile device users in mind. So the mobile version will be very similar, if not the same, as the full web version on the traditional websites.
Brokers will cater for both iOS and Android devices, and produce versions for each. Downloads are quick, and traders can sign up via the mobile site as well. Our reviews contain more detail about each brokers mobile app, but most are fully aware that this is a growing area of trading. Traders want to react immediately to news events and market updates, so brokers provide the tools for clients to trade wherever they are.
What Does Binary Options Mean?
“Binary options” means, put very simply, a trade where the outcome is a ‘binary’ Yes/No answer. These options pay a fixed amount if they win (known as “in the money”), but the entire investment is lost, if the binary trade loses. So, in short, they are a form of fixed return financial options.
How Does a Stock Trade Work?
Steps to trade a stock via a binary option;
- Select the stock or equity.
- Identify the desired expiry time (The time the option will end).
- Enter the size of the trade or investment
- Decide if the value will rise or fall and place a put or call
The steps above will be the same at every single broker. More layers of complexity can be added, but when trading equities the simple Up/Down trade type remains the most popular.
Put and Call Options
Call and Put are simply the terms given to buying or selling an option. If a trader thinks the underlying price will go up in value, they can open a call. But where they expect the price to go down, they can place a put trade.
Different trading platforms label their trading buttons different, some even switch between Buy/Sell and Call/Put. Others drop the phrases put and call altogether. Almost every trading platform will make it absolutely clear which direction a trader is opening an option in.
Are Binary Options a Scam?
As a financial investment tool they in themselves not a scam, but there are brokers, trading robots and signal providers that are untrustworthy and dishonest.
The point is not to write off the concept of binary options, based solely on a handful of dishonest brokers. The image of these financial instruments has suffered as a result of these operators, but regulators are slowly starting to prosecute and fine the offenders and the industry is being cleaned up. Our forum is a great place to raise awareness of any wrongdoing.
These simple checks can help anyone avoid the scams:
- Marketing promising huge returns. This is clear warning sign. Binaries are a high risk / high reward tool – they are not a “make money online” scheme and should not be sold as such. Operators making such claims are very likely to be untrustworthy.
- Know the broker. Some operators will ‘funnel’ new customer to a broker they partner with, so the person has no idea who their account is with. A trader should know the broker they are going to trade with! These funnels often fall into the “get rich quick” marketing discussed earlier.
- Cold Calls. Professional brokers will not make cold calls – they do not market themselves in that way. Cold calls will often be from unregulated brokers interested only in getting an initial deposit. Proceed extremely carefully if joining a company that got in contact this way. This would include email contact as well – any form of contact out of the blue.
- Terms and Conditions. When taking a bonus or offer, read the full terms and conditions. Some will include locking in an initial deposit (in addition to the bonus funds) until a high volume of trades have been made. The first deposit is the trader’s cash – legitimate brokers would not claim it as theirs before any trading. Some brokers also offer the option of cancelling a bonus if it does not fit the needs of the trader.
- Do not let anyone trade for you. Avoid allowing any “account manager” to trade for you. There is a clear conflict of interest, but these employees of the broker will encourage traders to make large deposits, and take greater risks . Traders should not let anyone trade on their behalf.
Which Are The Best Trading Strategies?
Binary trading strategies are unique to each trade. We have a strategy section, and there are ideas that traders can experiment with. Technical analysis is of use to some traders, combined with charts, indicators and price action research. Money management is essential to ensure risk management is applied to all trading. Different styles will suit different traders and strategies will also evolve and change.
There is no single “best” strategy. Traders need to ask questions of their investing aims and risk appetite and then learn what works for them.
Are Binary Options Gambling?
This will depend entirely on the habits of the trader. With no strategy or research, then any short term investment is going to win or lose based only on luck. Conversely, a trader making a well researched trade will ensure they have done all they can to avoid relying on good fortune.
Binary options can be used to gamble, but they can also be used to make trades based on value and expected profits. So the answer to the question will come down to the trader.
Advantages of Binary Trading
The main benefit of binaries is the clarity of risk and reward and the structure of the trade.
Minimal Financial Risk
If you have traded forex or its more volatile cousins, crude oil or spot metals such as gold or silver, you will have probably learnt one thing: these markets carry a lot of risk and it is very easy to be blown off the market. Things like leverage and margin, news events, slippages and price re-quotes, etc can all affect a trade negatively. The situation is different in binary options trading. There is no leverage to contend with, and phenomena such as slippage and price re-quotes have no effect on binary option trade outcomes. This reduces the risk in binary option trading to the barest minimum.
The binary options market allows traders to trade financial instruments spread across the currency and commodity markets as well as indices and bonds. This flexibility is unparalleled, and gives traders with the knowledge of how to trade these markets, a one-stop shop to trade all these instruments.
A binary trade outcome is based on just one parameter: direction. The trader is essentially betting on whether a financial asset will end up in a particular direction. In addition, the trader is at liberty to determine when the trade ends, by setting an expiry date. This gives a trade that initially started badly the opportunity to end well. This is not the case with other markets. For example, control of losses can only be achieved using a stop loss. Otherwise, a trader has to endure a drawdown if a trade takes an adverse turn in order to give it room to turn profitable. The simple point being made here is that in binary options, the trader has less to worry about than if he were to trade other markets.
Greater Control of Trades
Traders have better control of trades in binaries. For example, if a trader wants to buy a contract, he knows in advance, what he stands to gain and what he will lose if the trade is out-of-the-money. This is not the case with other markets. For example, when a trader sets a pending order in the forex market to trade a high-impact news event, there is no assurance that his trade will be filled at the entry price or that a losing trade will be closed out at the exit stop loss.
The payouts per trade are usually higher in binaries than with other forms of trading. Some brokers offer payouts of up to 80% on a trade. This is achievable without jeopardising the account. In other markets, such payouts can only occur if a trader disregards all rules of money management and exposes a large amount of trading capital to the market, hoping for one big payout (which never occurs in most cases).
In order to trade the highly volatile forex or commodities markets, a trader has to have a reasonable amount of money as trading capital. For instance, trading gold, a commodity with an intra-day volatility of up to 10,000 pips in times of high volatility, requires trading capital in tens of thousands of dollars. However, binary options has much lower entry requirements, as some brokers allow people to start trading with as low as $10.
Disadvantages of Binary Trading
Reduced Trading Odds for Sure-Banker Trades
The payouts for binary options trades are drastically reduced when the odds for that trade succeeding are very high. While it is true that some trades offer as much as 85% payouts per trade, such high payouts are possible only when a trade is made with the expiry date set at some distance away from the date of the trade. Of course in such situations, the trades are more unpredictable.
Lack of Good Trading Tools
Some brokers do not offer truly helpful trading tools such as charts and features for technical analysis to their clients. Experienced traders can get around this by sourcing for these tools elsewhere; inexperienced traders who are new to the market are not as fortunate. This is changing for the better though, as operators mature and become aware of the need for these tools to attract traders.
Limitations on Risk Management
Unlike in forex where traders can get accounts that allow them to trade mini- and micro-lots on small account sizes, many binary option brokers set a trading floor; minimum amounts which a trader can trade in the market. This makes it easier to lose too much capital when trading binaries. As an illustration, a forex broker may allow you to open an account with $200 and trade micro-lots, which allows a trader to expose only acceptable amounts of his capital to the market. However, you will be hard put finding many binary brokers that will allow you to trade below $50, even with a $200 account. In this situation, four losing trades will blow the account.
Cost of Losing Trades
Unlike in other markets where the risk/reward ratio can be controlled and set to give an edge to winning trades, the odds of binary options tilt the risk-reward ratio in favour of losing trades.
When trading a market like the forex or commodities market, it is possible to close a trade with minimal losses and open another profitable one, if a repeat analysis of the trade reveals the first trade to have been a mistake. Where binaries are traded on an exchange, this is mitigated however.
Spot Forex vs Binary Trading
These are two different alternatives, traded with two different psychologies, but both can make sense as investment tools. One is more TIME centric and the other is more PRICE centric. They both work in time/price but the focus you will find from one to the other is an interesting split. Spot forex traders might overlook time as a factor in their trading which is a very very big mistake. The successful binary trader has a more balanced view of time/price, which simply makes him a more well rounded trader. Binaries by their nature force one to exit a position within a given time frame win or lose which instills a greater focus on discipline and risk management. In forex trading this lack of discipline is the #1 cause for failure to most traders as they will simply hold losing positions for longer periods of time and cut winning positions in shorter periods of time. In binary options that is not possible as time expires your trade ends win or lose. Below are some examples of how this works.
Above is a trade made on the EUR/USD buying in an under 10 minute window of price and time. As a binary trader this focus will naturally make you better than the below example, where a spot forex trader who focuses on price while ignoring the time element ends up in trouble. This psychology of being able to focus on limits and the dual axis will aid you in becoming a better trader overall.
The very advantage of spot trading is its very same failure – the expansion of profits exponentially from 1 point in price. This is to say that if you enter a position that you believe will increase in value and the price does not increase yet accelerates to the downside, the normal tendency for most spot traders is to wait it out or worse add to the losing positions as they figure it will come back. The acceleration in time to the opposite desired direction causes most spot traders to be trapped in unfavourable positions, all because they do not plan time into their reasoning, and this leads to a complete lack of trading discipline.
The nature of binary options force one to have a more complete mindset of trading off both Y = Price Range and X = Time Range as limits are applied. They will simply make you a better overall trader from the start. Conversely on the flip side, they by their nature require a greater win rate as each bet means a 70-90% gain vs a 100% loss. So your win rate needs to be on average 54%-58% to break even. This imbalance causes many traders to overtrade or revenge trade which is just as bad as holding/adding to losing positions as a spot forex trader. To successfully trade you need to practice money management and emotional control.
In conclusion, when starting out as a trader, binaries might offer a better foundation to learn trading. The simple reasoning is that the focus on TIME/PRICE combined is like looking both ways when crossing the street. The average spot forex trader only looks at price, which means he is only looking in one direction before crossing the street. Learning to trade taking both time and price into consideration should aid in making one a much overall trader.
Binary Options Brokers and Platforms – Reviews and Comparison
We have compared the best regulated binary options brokers and platforms in April 2020 and created this top list. Every broker and platform has been personally reviewed by us to help you find the best binary options platform for both beginners and experts. The sortable broker comparison list below shows which binary trading sites came out on top based on different criteria.
You can sort the list using payout (maximum returns), minimum deposit, bonus offers or if the operator is regulated or not. You can also read full reviews of each broker, helping you make the best choice. Below the comparison list is some advice on how to pick the best trading platform for you, as this will often come down to your personal requirements and needs.
|Nadex Exchange||$250||100%||» Visit|
|RaceOption||$250||90%||100% Deposit match bonus||» Visit|
|BinaryCent||$100||85%||100% Bonus on ANY 1st Deposit||» Visit|
How to Compare Brokers and Platforms
In order to trade binary options, you need to engage the services of a binary options broker. Here at binaryoptions.net we have provided a list with all the best comparison factors that will help you select which trading broker to open an account with. We have also looked at our most popular or frequently asked questions, and have noted that these are important factors when traders are comparing different brokers:
- What is the Minimum Deposit? (These range from $5 or $10 up to $250)
- Are they regulated or licensed, and with which regulator?
- Can I open a Demo Account?
- Is there a signals service, and is it free?
- Can I trade on my mobile phone and is there a mobile app?
- Is there a Bonus available for new trader accounts? What are the Terms and
- Who has the best binary trading platform? Do you need high detail charts with technical analysis indicators?
- Which broker has the best asset lists? Do they offer forex, cryptocurrency, commodities, indices and stocks – and how many of each?
- Which broker has the largest range of expiry times (30 seconds, 60 seconds, end of day, long term etc?)
- How much is the minimum trade size or amount?
- What types of options are available? (Touch, Ladder, Boundary, Pairs etc)
- Additional Tools – Like Early closure or Metatrader 4 (Mt4) plugin or integration
- Do they operate a Robot or offer automated trading software?
- What is the Customer Support like? Do they offer telephone, email and live chat support – and in which countries? Do they list direct contact details?
- Who has the best payouts or maximum returns? Check the markets you will trade.
We cover as many of these comparison factors as possible in our list above, but we go into much more depth within each review.
Regulated Binary Brokers
Regulation and licensing is a key factor when judging the best broker. Unregulated brokers are not always scams, or untrustworthy, but it does mean a trader must do more ‘due diligence’ before trading with them. A regulated broker is the safest option.
|Binary.com||Malta GA||BO, CFD|
|IQ Option||CySEC||BO, CFD, Crypto, Forex|
|BDSwiss||CySec||BO, CFD, Crypto, Forex|
|24Option||CySEC||BO, CFD, Crypto, Forex|
|Nadex Exchange||CFTC||BO, Forex|
Leading regulatory bodies include:
- CySec – The Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (Cyprus and the EU)
- FCA – Financial Conduct Authority (UK)
- CFTC – Commodity Futures Trading Commission (US)
- FSB – Financial Services Board (South Africa)
- ASIC – Australia Securities and Investment Commission
There are other regulators in addition to the above, and in some cases, brokers will be regulated by more than one organisation. This is becoming more common in Europe where binary options are coming under increased scrutiny. Reputable, premier brands will have regulation of some sort.
Regulation is there to protect traders, to ensure their money is correctly held and to give them a path to take in the event of a dispute. It should therefore be an important consideration when choosing a trading partner.
Both sign up bonuses and demo accounts are used to attract new clients. Bonuses are often a deposit match, a one-off payment or risk free trade . Whatever the form of bonus, there are terms and conditions that need to be read.
It is worth taking the time to understand those terms before signing up or clicking accept on a bonus offer. If the terms are not to your liking then the bonus loses any attraction and that broker may not be the best choice. Some bonus terms tie in your initial deposit too. It is worth reading T&Cs before agreeing to any bonus, and worth noting that many brokers will give you the option to ‘opt out’ of taking a bonus.
Using a bonus effectively is harder than it sounds. If considering taking up one of these offers, think about whether, and how, it might affect your trading. One common issue is that turnover requirements within the terms, often cause traders to ‘over trade’. If the bonus does not suit you, turn it down.
Binary options demo accounts are the best way to try both binary options trading, and specific brokers’ software and platforms – without needing to risk any money.
You can get demo accounts at more than one broker, try them out and only deposit real money at the one you find best. It can also be useful to have accounts at more than one broker. For example, payouts for two different assets might be best at different brokers. You can shop around, and use whichever account has the best payout for that asset.
Demo accounts offer the best way to try out a brand, risk free. Likewise if we recommend a brand, you can try it first, before risking anything.
Low Minimum Deposits
If you are looking to get involved with binary options for the first time, low minimum deposit requirements may be of interest. For traders just looking to try binary options, a low minimum deposit broker might be best. A small initial deposit keeps risks low. Minimum deposits start at just $5 and there are a growing number of brokers offering low minimum deposits – “low” would be any minimum under $50.
Likewise, all brokers will have a minimum trade requirement or trade amount too. These can vary greatly between platforms. Minimum trade figures range from $1 to $25 – which is a large difference if a trader plans to trade frequently. For some traders, this might be less of a factor in terms of finding the best broker for them, but for others it will be very important. Practice accounts are a zero risk way of learning to trade.
One element many traders use to find the best binary options trading account, is the payout percentage on offer. This is not always a simple comparison however. Payouts will change based on the underlying asset being traded, and the expiry time of the option. In addition, payouts will change as the broker manages their own risk. So if one broker was originally the best price, things may then revert and mean that another now has the top payout.
So the most an investor can do, is to check the payouts for assets, and expiry times they are most likely to make, and judge which brand offers the best terms most often. Demo accounts are good when researching payouts on specific assets and trades.
Exchange traded and over the counter brokers will have different payouts – and they will not be easy to compare. In general, exchange traded options offer superior value. Nadex are one example of an exchange.
So as you can see, finding the best trading account and broker is not always easy – but it is worth noting that you are free to move between brokers whenever you like. So even if an account turns out to be poor, it is easy to up sticks and find a new trading firm. Likewise, a trader could have multiple accounts, and open trades at the broker with the best terms for that particular trade.
US Regulated Brokers
In the US, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) have only licensed two operators – Nadex and CBOE – to provide binary options trading to clients in the USA.
Brokers based in Europe will not generally accept US residents as clients, as doing so can result in large fines. Some off-shore providers will accept US citizens as their regulatory status permits them, but the CFTC may ultimately step in if they deem it necessary.
CFTC regulated brokers:
Which is the Best Binary Trading Platform?
Naming the best trading platform is not easy, simply because trading platforms and proprietary (bespoke) software are normally a question of personal taste. One user might like a simple layout, while others might need a lot of data on screen all the time.
However, platforms do have different levels of quality, both in terms of ease of use, and features. Broadly speaking, brands which offer Contracts for Difference (CFDs) in addition to binary options, deliver a more feature-rich trading platform or advanced software.
So the likes of Nadex and IQ, will deliver a very professional trading platform. MetaTrader integration is also normally provided at the more professional brokers (Some use both mt4 and mt5 functionality) . This difference in quality is evidence of the maturity of binary options as a product, but binary brands will catch up very quickly.
Intro To The IQ Option Platform
How do Brokers Make Money?
Binary options brokers make money via one of two business models:
- As a counter-party, ensuring an ‘over round’ via payout percentages. Known as ‘Over the counter’ (OTC)
- Via a spread or commission on an exchange traded model
People who have experience of other forms of trading, and are now approaching over-the-counter (OTC) brokers for the first time may find themselves asking the question: “Where is the commission?”.
With OTC binaries however, there is no commission. In theory, the term ‘brokers’, is not correct. Binary firms are not arranging a deal or acting as a middleman, or as a market maker; What they are, is the counter-party to each of their customers’ positions. So there is no fee or commission for the trade. Instead, each customer is essentially betting against the house. Where brokers have both sides of a trade covered, they have a handsome margin. Where they do not, the payout still gives them a level of protection. In certain circumstances, the broker will also hedge it’s own position to mitigate risk.
Those companies (Nadex, for instance) that trade binary options via an exchange operate much more like a ‘broker’. Unlike the OTC market where the platform is the counter party, with exchange traded options, the broker is the middleman – matching buyers with sellers and charging a commission. This charge is normally hidden within the spread, rather than an explicit cost. There is far less risk involved for the broker, and therefore generally better returns per trade for the trader. Brokers can be actively compared using the spread – the tighter the spread (difference between buy and sell prices) the cheaper it is to trade.
Brokers using the spread model often also offer leverage, or trading on ‘margin’ via their software. This increases the trade size for the trader – and profit for the platform.
Should You Use Multiple Brokers?
There are some very good arguments for having more than one binary trading account:
- Brokers suit certain trades. Different brokers will suit different trading styles, or trade types. So one broker might be excellent for shorter term trade types, and have great payouts on forex pairs. But that same brand may be slightly less good when it comes to offering boundary trades or indices payouts. If a rival had a full set of long term expiries with great payouts, and lots of choice of boundary trades – it makes sense to have accounts with both platforms, and place trades with the broker that offered the best deal for each trade.
- Demo accounts. Multiple demo accounts makes perfect sense – you want to try as many brokers and trading platforms as possible before deciding where to trade.
- Reduce risk. Accounts at more than one broker protects you from any issues with a particular firm. From issues as serious as insolvency, to smaller things, like website downtime, software issues or a market being closed – multiple accounts reduces your risk of being affected by any hardship a broker might face.
- Multiple offers. Each sign up can mean a new bonus, so it might be worthwhile taking up more than one account to receive all the offers. As ever, read the terms – and also note that on occasion, larger deposits might mean larger bonuses – so splitting them may not be the best choice.
- Spread winnings. Some brokers may look for winning traders on their books, with a view to restricting their trading, perhaps limiting trade size – or worse. While this threat is thankfully small, multiple accounts means spreading the winnings out. Most brokers will search for “winners” based on total profit rather than strike rate, so hiding the volume across broker accounts can help you stay below their radar.
Exchange versus OTC (Over the Counter) Brokers
A broker that offers an exchange is much closer to a traditional ‘broker’ than OTC brokers. An exchange performs the job of ‘middleman’. They will match a seller of an asset, with a buyer of the same asset, and charge a commission for putting the deal together. The market itself will decide the prices – if there are more sellers than buyers, the price will drift down until demand rises. If there are more buyers than those willing to sell, the option price will rise.
A broker operating an exchange does not mind who wins and who loses. They take no risk on the trade themselves (unless the traders are trading on credit). The broker will make their commission on the trade regardless of the outcome.
Due to this reduced risk for the broker, the returns for a winning trader are generally larger. Commissions are usually small relative to the size of the trade, meaning they do not impact the payout too much. Other benefits include the fact that stop losses can be applied, and also that trades can be closed at any time (to take a profit or reduce losses).
The complications with exchanges, comes from the structure. An exchange traded binary option will “trade” somewhere between 0 and 100. Where 0 is the figure used where an event did not occur, and 100 where it did. If the current price is currently 30, a ‘buyer’ would risk 30 times his trade size, to potentially win 70. A ‘seller’ therefore, would risk 70 to win 30. While not a complicated equation, it is slightly more complex than the straight forward over the counter option.
OTC (Over The Counter) Brokers
The most common type is the Over the counter (OTC) broker, but this type of firm is not really a ‘broker’ at all strictly speaking. They are the counter-party to one side of the trade. So where a trader opens a position, the broker will win or lose money, based on whether the trade wins or loses. Only where the broker has another trader who has made the exact opposite trade, will they have assured profits.
Due to this increased risk, the brokers will offer a lower payout which mitigates some of the risk they are taking. It is therefore likely to be lower than an exchange traded broker. Some firms will also have built in ‘hedging’ mechanisms to reduce risk further. In some cases, one side of trade might be made unavailable if liabilities get too large.
The simplicity of binary options is retained with OTC brokers. They have also made great strides in competing with exchanges by offering ‘cash out’ values for options, allowing traders to close positions early, and set up stop losses. Once those features become common the gap between OTC and exchanges will get smaller. For now, traders are better off trading on an exchange – but might be advised to learn the differences via demo account.
Have you had a problem with your broker? Submit a complaint
Deposit and withdrawal options do vary at each brokerage. Each of our reviews will explain which each firm offer, but below is a list of the most common options.
If you are looking for brokers that support a specific payment method:
- Wire Transfer
- Credit cards / Debit cards
All of the factors covered above will ultimately affect the way a trader plays the market, and therefore, their profitability. The ideal situation is to get a binary broker that offers:
- Several financial assets spread across several markets
- Offers a reasonable bonus with a good payout approaching 90%
- Offers flexible expiration dates without boxing traders into very long expirations.
Trading using a broker’s platform will only be enjoyable, and profitable, if you are using a reputable operator. You also need to choose one that suits your trading style best – only you will know what that is. Read the above binary broker reviews carefully before making that crucial trading decision, but remember you are not tied in to any single broker, and can pick and choose.
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Binary options are a relatively new set of financial instruments that can be traded for money. Being ‘young’ in terms of financial products, they are still improperly understood by a large section of the non-professional trading community.
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General Risk Warning:
Trading in Binary Options or CFDs carries a high level of risk and can result in the loss of your investment. As such, binary options may not be appropriate for you. You should not invest money that you cannot afford to lose. Before deciding to trade, you should carefully consider your investment objectives, level of experience and risk appetite. Under no circumstances shall we have any liability to any person or entity for (a) any loss or damage in whole or part caused by, resulting from or relating to any transactions related to binary options or (b) any direct, indirect, special, consequential or incidental damages whatsoever.
Banc De Binary Wins World Finance Award for Best Platform
Banc De Binary recently got the World Finance Award for being the best platform for options trading in Asia and America. The trading company got the award just a few months after it made it to the 100 List of the World Finance. According to World Finance, the company is the epitome of success. When giving the award to the binary options platform at the London Stock Exchange, a spokesperson for World Finance stated that Banc De Binary has made a name for itself in the area of binary options trading. The company has been successful in driving growth in the market.
Binary Options Trading Increases Despite Banking Crisis
Despite the banking crisis across the globe, binary options trading has increased. Banc De Binary has become the industry leader in binary options trading. The executive team in the company is dedicated to providing traders innovations in the trading platform. This is possible, as the company has years of experience in financial markets. Investors can calculate the risks quite accurately when they use the trading platform. This enables them to maximize profits.
Oren Laurent, the CEO of Banc De Binary expressed his joy on getting the award. He stated that the company is always pushing itself to stay in the lead in the binary options market. According to Laurent, the company is committed to improving its services and developing technology so traders have good tools for trading. The World Finance’s recognition of the company’s achievements will motivate the company to expand its offerings.
Banc De Binary’s Client-Base in More than Eighty Countries
Banc De Binary currently has a client-base spread in over eighty countries. Its tradable assets are from close to thirty countries. While the company takes steps to improve its offerings for the Asian and American markets where it has made a place for itself, Banc De Binary has set its eyes on increasing its presence in Europe.
Recently, the company started a French website. It hired a number of financial experts who can provide customer support in more than ten languages. Laurent is confident that Forex traders based in Europe will take to binary options just as investors across the world have. He stated that in an economic situation that is unstable, trading binary options is a good solution.
Updownsignals.com is an SSP that may stand a little taller than the rest. The signal service provider is a subscription service that provides a variety of signals for day, forex and binary options traders. They claims a better than 70% winning rate which is more believable than the 90-95% success rates proclaimed by other less savory SSP’s. The service is geared toward newbies all through pro traders with daily signals form a list of over 70 assets. The signals are real-time and delivered right to your phone so that you can get them as soon as they are delivered. This is usually an hour or two after the market (the U.S. market) opens each day.
There are two main categories of trade signals; Signals for Day Traders and Signals for Binary Options. Both come with identical packages which include a 7 day trial period, a one month introductory period and a 3 month professional level subscription. The 7 day trial is non-recurring but the one month and 3 month can be set up to automatically re-subscribe at the end of the period. Options signals, or binary options signals, are delivered in a format that includes call/put, strike level and expiration time. Each signal is a 3 hour forecast for the given asset meaning the signal can be taken at any time during that three hour period provided it is above or below the given strike price depending on predicted options direction.
The day trading signals are geared more toward forex trading as they target an entry and an exit. I wont spend much time here as you are reading this article on a binary options website but I want to point out that their description of their own service is not trust inspiring. They say that the signals should be taken and used as a “market sentiment”, not a true signal. It is then up to you to use their recommendation to make your own trading decisions. If this is the case then what the hell are you paying for?
One thing that raised a red flag for me was the very specific nature of the signals. By specific I mean the expiration price and the stated return of 70% for each winning trade. If you have any experience with binary options brokers then you will know that they do not always have the same expiries or returns. Brokers that use the same platform such as SpotOption or Tech Financials will usually have the same expiries but that is not always the case either. The fact that they do list specific expiry and return leads me to believe they will have a “recommended” broker. I never did find that recommended broker but the claims of suitability with all platforms is completely false. You will have to use a broker with the exact same expiry as the signal in order to ensure you will have the same success rate as the SSP.
One of the bonuses the website will make you aware of, and another red flag in my opinion, is the “Best Signals” award given by Fair Binary Options. Awards are great but are usually not worth more than the paper they are printed. In this case its an award delivered across the ether net so it aint worht that much. Fair Binary Options is yet another affiliate marketing website aimed at signing up new traders. This website makes money when you click through to it’s partners and sign up, deposit into a trading account or purchase from the product offering. Fair Binary Options is a rather spectacular website but I seriously question its benefit to traders and would not be surprised to find out that it was more deeply involved with UpDownSignals.com than mere ad affiliation.
More importantly than perhaps anything else is the answer to the question “who is behind this SSP?” The first place you would think to look is the about us page, it is supposed to be about them isn’t it? In order to build trust in the community a little information about who and what it is we’re giving our money to would be nice. The only thing I found there was more sales pitch talking about how they use advanced analytics designed for algo-traders and now availabe to us, which I am sure comes as much of a relief to you as it does to me.
Even a seemingly good signal service may not be worth your time. What do I mean? First, you should never trust your trading decisions to someone else. It’s that simple. Allowing someone else to tell you what to trade and when is ludicrous. If you don’t know how to trade then you really shouldn’t be trading binary options and even more than that, if you don’t know who you are taking your signals from you shouldn’t be taking those signals. Adding to my skepticism of this SSP is the apparent affiliate association it has with Fair Binary Options. At best the award is honestly given and the affiliation is merely an attempt to make some money. At worst it is an underhanded affiliate scheme, the truth is probably somewhere in between.
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