Online forex trading explained and analyzed.

IBFX

Established in 2001 and headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA, Interbank FX LLC (or IBFX as abbreviated) is one of the world largest investment firms and forex brokers. IBFX.com serves more than 35,000 clients from over 140 countries around the world.

The IBFX website offers its support in 17 languages, contains several video tutorials to teach new comers of how to utilize their MT4 trading platform, contains live help 24/5 and corresponds to emails no later than 48 hours upon receipt. IBFX also offers phone support; a service that is becoming more and more a necessity within the Forex industry, more so from brokers that do not offer a web-based platform.

IBFX uses a Multi-Bank system as its liquidity providers and as such can afford to give its clients relatively low variable spreads (which it boasts can reach as low as 1 pip on some occasions), as well as fast execution which comes about from the availability of fills with a number of banks and full hedging capabilities for its clients.

Regulation: Nowadays it is more important than ever for a trader to be a member of a regulated Broker for a number of reasons, in particular for safety of funds. IBFX is regulated by the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the National Futures Association (NFA) of the USA.

IBFX Forex Accounts

IBFX provides 3 accounts; the Standard, Mini and No-Swap accounts.

The IBFX standard account allows traders to open positions with a minimum of 0.01 standard lots (1,000), which they can leverage up to 50:1, meaning the minimum margin required is $20. With the IBFX standard account a client may trade up to 50 standard lots (5 million) and can change his trading size the following IBFX predetermined volumes: 0.01, 0.1, 1, 10, 25 and 50.

The IBFX mini account allows traders to open a position with a minimum of 0.01 mini lots (100) that can be leveraged up to 50:1, meaning the minimum margin required is $2. The maximum that can be traded with a mini account is 50 mini lots (500,000). The predetermined mini account volumes are 0.01, 0.1, 10, 25 and 50.

The IBFX No-Swap account is designed to accommodate clients that abide by the Sharia Law and as such it is against their religion to gain/pay any interest on their positions. In order to accommodate for such clients, IBFX requests that such individuals apply as normally for an account (mini or standard), whilst at the same time fill out and submit a form which requests for their account to be a No-swap account.

In addition, like many other Forex Brokers, IBFX offers a demo account that enables clients to use and test the platform with live rates, as well as perhaps test run their EA’s.

IBFX Trading Platform

IBFX uses MT4 as its trading platform; a leading platform in the world of Forex trading, the MT4 platform of IBFX permits for trader’s Expert Advisors and provides over 40 custom indicators and tools to help traders in their decision making and analyzing of the market. IBFX also offers its MT4 platform for Pocket PC’s (which require a stylus) and Smartphones.

A great incentive offered by IBFX.com is a number of videos that allows new MT4 users to become familiar with how to use the MT4 platform and provides an educational background with regards to maximizing your efficiency when using the MT4 platform. Such MT4 educational videos provided by IBFX are no more than a few minutes long and very straight forward to follow.

IBFX Excluded Clients

One of the bigger disadvantages both for Interbank FX and potential traders from the following countries is that customers from the listed countries below are currently not accepted by IBFX:

Belarus The Republic of Congo
Brazil Cuba
British Columbia Islamic Republic of Iran
Cote D’Ivoire Korea
Eritrea Myanmar (Burma)
Iraq Sudan
Republic of Korea Nigeria
Lebanon Zimbabwe
Liberia Sierra Leone
Syrian Arab Republic Somalia

Interbank FX Spreads and Execution

IBFX Forex provides its clients with variable spreads that can reach as low as 1 pip for the EUR/USD and around 2.2-2.7 for most other Majors. IBFX provides the same multi-bank liquidity rates for all its account types and does not add price widening to smaller accounts. Something that I found very honest and in good faith was the fact that IBFX provided the average spread for each of its currency pairs as well as the ability for a client to navigate back and see the different spreads that had been offered in the past for different currency pairs. Judging by the relatively larger size (in comparison to the minimum) within some currency pairs, one would trust that these rates are in fact IBFX’s real average rates – This amount of transparency from IBFX should instill great trust from some traders into IBFX.

Interbank FX boasts to have a high execution rate via its MT4 platform as it publishes within its website the number of accepted requests, in percentage and total value, which usually is around 99.70%. IBFX does not however specify whether this value is including or excluding re-quotes, which to some traders may as well be a rejection of their trade as it would be as if IBFX was practically rejecting to fill them in at the price they chose. In addition IBFX provides data for the average execution time, which is on average below 10 seconds.

IBFX Education

IBFX has a very easy to navigate and access education section. The educational topics that IBFX provides range from the Forex basics and getting to know what Forex is to the use of fundamental and technical analysis and stretches as far as teaching some of the basics and most commonly used commands in programming. The IBFX education section is very tidily sorted into sections which make it very easy for any trader to come and promptly be guided to the educational material he is seeking to view.

The variety of information within the Interbank FX education portal is suited for beginners, intermediate and advanced traders. Personally I find that the information provided through the IBFX website, albeit sometimes monochromatic to the eye, is extremely helpful and contains a vast amount of useful information in one place that otherwise may take the effort of having to look to a variety of websites for a trader to find.

IBFX Deposits and Withdrawals

With Interbank FX there is no minimum or maximum deposit, however please note that the minimum funds needed to open a position with a standard account is $20 and with a mini account it is $2. In addition certain documents need to be uploaded (Utility bill and Identification card/passport) before the no maximum deposit rule applies.

IBFX accepts Wire transfer, check and credit cards (Visa, MasterCard and Discover) as methods of deposit. These methods are also available for withdrawal.

IBFX Review

One good way to evaluate a broker is to see if they have survived the test of time – something that IBFX has done successfully as it has been around a decade now since 2001. IBFX is a recommended broker who in many traders’ opinions earns status as a very transparent broker from the sheer fact that they have full transparency with regards to the fact that you are shown the average spread per currency pair and the fact that IBFX allows you to navigate through the spreads of their past rates.

The use of an MT4 platform, a no minimum or maximum deposit and the ability to trade in small contract sizes all contribute for a positive status of IBFX. In addition IBFX provides a very user friendly and easy to navigate education center as well as provides a search toolbar, a feature which very often leads clients to various Frequently Asked Questions, for navigating throughout their website.

Some of the drawbacks of IBFX include the limited leverage size of 50:1 – well below the Forex industry standard -, the restriction to a vast number of countries for the provision of IBFX’s investment services and also the limited deposit/withdrawal methods. In spite of being able to deposit by Credit Card, this is limited to 3 types of cards and IBFX does not provide any e-wallet methods for deposit/withdrawal.