AVA Trade EU Ltd is a CFD and forex broker founded in 2006 that offers traders the possibility of speculating with a wide variety of financial instruments including commodities, bonds, cryptocurrencies, stocks, and stock indexes, all covered by the platform’s CFD products.
Best Trading Platform Overall: 4.9/5 Stars
AvaTrade’s holding company is registered at the British Virgin Islands but the firm is headquartered in Dublin, Ireland.
Additionally, AvaTrade operates in other countries including Australia, South Africa, Singapore, Japan, France, Italy, Spain, Mongolia, China, and Abu Dhabi, serving more than 200,000 active customers and enabling approximately 2 million trade orders per month.
The following is a list of AvaTrade’s subsidiaries registered in some of the above-mentioned countries:
- British Virgin Islands (holding company): AVA Trade Ltd
- Ireland: AVA Trade EU Ltd
- Australia: Ava Capital Markets Australia Pty Ltd
- South Africa: Ava Capital Markets Pty
- Japan: Ava Trade Japan K.K
- Abu Dhabi: AVA Trade Middle East Ltd
Why should you read this review?
The wide range of online forex and CFD brokers available these days have made the task of comparing their key features and competitive advantages a bit time-consuming for busy traders and investors who would rather focus their time in learning more about trading or researching new ideas.
This guide was conceived to simplify the task of evaluating AvaTrade’s CFDs and forex products, along with its services, platforms, costs, and features, among other important details about this broker that should help you in making an informed decision.
You can use this and other similar reviews compiled for other brokers to short-list your candidates to ultimately make a decision on who you will work with.
The following topics will be covered by this AvaTrade review:
- Main advantages of trading with AvaTrade
- How safe it is to trade with AvaTrade
- Opening an account with AvaTrade
- Depositing and withdrawing money with AvaTrade
- Financial products offered by AvaTrade – CFDs, forex
- User experience and features of AvaTrade’s trading platform
- Third-party platforms supported by AvaTrade (MetaTrader 4, etc)
- Trading fees charged by AvaTrade
- Research tools available for AvaTrade
- Educational materials available (demo account, tutorials, eBooks, etc)
- AvaTrade’s customer service review
- Risks associated with trading CFDs
AvaTrade is a trading platform that provides hundreds of CFD products and a limited number of currency pairs for traders located in more than 120 countries through its two proprietary trading platforms – Webtrader and AvaOptions – and third-party platforms such as MetaTrader 4 and 5.
The company and its subsidiaries are regulated by various tier-1 and tier-2 jurisdictions such as the Central Bank of Ireland, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), and the Japanese Financial Services Agency (FSA).
Compared to its rivals, AvaTrade’s portfolio of available stock, index, and forex CFD is fairly smaller, while its trading fees for popular instruments and currency pairs such as EURUSD are higher than the average.
That said, both the proprietary and third-party trading platforms supported by AvaTrade – MetaTrader 4 and 5 – are great and their features are particularly attractive. Additionally, no fees are charged for deposits and withdrawals, which is also an appealing characteristic of this broker compared to its competitors.
AvaTrade’s trading platforms include a web-based and mobile trading app called Webtrader, which is the company’s proprietary trading platform, along with another platform called AvaOptions, which is designed for forex CFD traders.
Additionally, AvaTrade supports MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5, both of which are third-party platforms.
The web-based trading platform of AvaTrade, Webtrader, has a user-friendly interface that allows traders to browse through and select the CFDs offered by this trading platform easily.
Prices are displayed right next to their ticker symbols along with buy and sell buttons and traders can tag their favorite securities as some sort of shortcut.
The search function works perfectly, allowing the user to search by symbol or name of the asset, while the reporting feature provides all the relevant information traders need to analyze their historical transactions including their market price, realized gains or losses, fees paid, and cost basis.
Meanwhile, it is important to note that the interface cannot be customized as none of its elements can be moved around to suit the users’ preferences.
Additionally, two-step logins are not available and no price alerts either, which is a bit disappointing as most trading platforms send notifications whenever the price of a security reaches a certain level.
The desktop trading platform of AvaTrade is fairly similar to the MetaTrader 4 platform with the sole upside that it allows for alerts and notifications.
On the other hand, compared to the web-based version, the design of the desktop platform is not as nice, while the customizability of charts and the interface itself is allowed. The reports section is also good, similar to the web-based version.
No two-step login is available for the desktop version either.
The desktop platform of MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 platforms are both supported by AvaTrade and they are available in at least 41 different languages.
The AvaOptions platform, designed for forex options trading only, also has a desktop version.
AvaTrade Mobile trading app
The mobile version of AvaTrade has a good-looking user-friendly interface and it offers as much as it can considering the narrow screen space that a mobile phone provides.
The search function works perfectly and the same goes for the reports function.
Meanwhile, there’s a unique feature that can only be accessed via the mobile app which is the AvaProtect order, designed to prevent financial losses by paying an extra fee.
AvaOptions also has a mobile app version and they are both available for iOs and Android.
One downside is that the platforms are only available in English, contrasting the wide range of languages offered by MetaTrader.
As for security, the mobile app allows for fingerprint login but no two-step login is available for this version either.
Price alerts can be set by using the mobile platform and they can be displayed on your phone’s screen via push notifications.
AvaTrade’s trading platform allows three different trader order types:
- Market order – this order is executed at the current market price of the security.
- Limit order – a limit order sets a maximum price at which you are willing to buy the securities or a minimum price at which you are willing to sell the securities. The order will only be executed at the limit price or better.
- Stop order – a stop order limits losses in case the market price falls below the stop price. The order will become a market order once that price is reached.
- AvaProtect: AvaProtect is a type of order that serves as a sort of insurance policy against losses resulting from trading operations made during a certain time period. This type of order comes with an extra fee and all the losses resulting from the trade will be reimbursed to the trader as long as they occurred during the time frame covered by the order.
Trading fees for AvaTrade are a bit higher than the industry’s average for both regular CFDs and forex.
The average spread charged for trading an S&P 500 index CFD is 0.5 while the average spread charged for trading a Europe 50 index CFD is 1 pip.
Furthermore, the cost of trading the EURUSD pair is 0.9 pips, just a bit above the industry’s average.
To estimate the cost of trading with this broker we have assumed a hypothetical $2,000 position held for one week with a leverage ratio of 20:1 for stock index CFDs and 5:1 for individual stock CFDs.
For this hypothetical scenario, the fees paid for each of the following instruments were:
- S&P 500 index CFD trading fees: $0.9
- Europe 50 index CFD trading fees: $0.6
- Apple stock CFD trading fees: $4.1
In this scenario, the cost of trading by using this broker is fairly lower than what traders would pay with other trading platforms such as Plus 500 or XM.
Meanwhile, to estimate the cost of trading currency pairs with this broker we have assumed a hypothetical trade of $20,000 with a 30:1 leverage ratio held for one week.
In that scenario, the cost of trading one of the following popular forex pairs would be:
- EURUSD: $19.2
- GBPUSD: $15.7
- EURGBP: $10.5
In this case, the cost of trading forex pairs with this broker is in most cases higher than the cost of trading the same pairs with XM and Plus500.
Finally, there’s an inactivity fee charged by AvaTrade if the user doesn’t log into the account for 3 months. This fee is $50 per quarter (around $13.33 per month), a bit higher than what other competitors charge.
Research tools provided by AvaTrade’s proprietary trading platforms include a news feed, an economic calendar, an idea hub, and many other resources that are embedded into all of this broker’s platforms – Webtrader, MetaTrader, and AvaOptions.
For trading ideas, AvaTrade offers a section known as ‘Analysts View’ or ‘Forex Featured Ideas’ where traders can find hints into potential trading signals spotted by other traders for most of the financial assets covered by the platform.
The economic calendar, on the other hand, covers a wide range of economic and corporate events around the world, rating them based on the potential impact they may have on the financial markets.
The news feed provided by AvaTrade is one of the best out there, featuring a great visual interface that tracks the number of publications per day, the orientation of such news – positive/negative – and the type of news covered. This feature is known as ‘Market Buzz’.
Finally, AvaTrade charting tools provide 90 different technical indicators that can be applied to each chart and these charts can be easily edited and modified to spot potential trading signals, price patterns, and trends.
This AvaTrade review found well-documented educational resources made available by this broker to registered users, going from basic platform tutorials to more advanced materials covering trading strategies and fundamental topics.
Here’s a summarized list of all the topics covered by AvaTrade’s educational resources:
- Trading for beginners
- Economic indicators
- Forex trading (eBook available)
- Professional trading strategies
- Platform tutorials
- Types of trade orders
These materials cover major topics that should help traders in further expanding their knowledge to potentially improve the performance of their portfolios.
AvaTrade also offers a demo account for traders to gain experience in trading before they commit real money to this activity.
AvaTrade offers three channels for users to communicate with its customer service team:
- Live chat
The live chat feature appears to perform well as response times are instant and customer representatives are well-trained to provide accurate information about different topics.
Phone support, on the other hand, is one of the weak spots of this broker’s customer support, as phone calls take long to be answered and, even though the company offers domestic phone numbers for different locations, some of its numbers cannot be reached.
E-mail queries are usually answered in 24 hours or less.
This broker does not offer 24/7 customer support, rather 24/5, but its customer support team is able to handle inquiries in different languages including German, Russian, French, English, and Chinese.
AvaTrade offers free of charge withdrawals regardless of which method the trader chooses to receive the funds.
There’s a limit on the amount you can withdraw from an account to a debit or credit card of up to 200% of the amount the trader has deposited into the account prior to the withdrawal. This limit does not apply to bank transfers.
Meanwhile, withdrawals can also be sent to electronic wallets and it should take one business day to receive withdrawals in credit or debit cards and electronic wallets while it may take a few days to receive bank transfers.
No minimum withdrawals were imposed by this broker.
Is AvaTrade Safe?
AvaTrade is considered safe and is regulated by several tier-1 financial authorities. There is enough evidence to consider AvaTrade as a reliable trading platform to buy and sell CFDs and forex products.
The main element that contributes to this conclusion is the fact that the company and its subsidiaries are regulated by various well-reputed agencies in the countries it operates. Some of these include:
- The Central Bank of Ireland
- The Japanese Financial Services Agency (FSA)
- The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)
- The Financial Futures Association of Japan (FFAJ)
Only one of these regulators offers protection for investors whose assets are managed or held by one of AvaTrade’s subsidiaries. The extent of those protections are:
- A €20,000 protection from the Central Bank of Ireland to EU clients
- Negative balance protection for retail clients in the EU
What's best about AvaTrade?
AvaTrade has many features that are appealing for both amateur and experienced traders including an easy and straightforward account opening process, a decent portfolio of CFDs products, a great trading platform, and the possibility of using third-party platforms such as Meta Trader.
Furthermore, this broker provides decent research tools for traders and they charge no withdrawal or deposit fees, which is particularly beneficial for traders with a small amount of available capital.
It is also possible to sign up for a demo account with AvaTrade to test its trading platform and interface before signing up and the minimum deposit required to open an AvaTrade account is fairly low. AvaTrade ranked at #1 in our test as the best forex broker Australia 2020.
How to Open an Account with AvaTrade?
- Standard Account: held by an individual
- Corporate Account: held by a company
- Islamic Account: this account does not charge swaps
- Professional Trading Account: this account allows for higher leverage ratios for forex and CFD trades but it requires significant experience in the financial sector, such as prior investment experience, a track record of significant trading activity, and a portfolio of at least €500,000
Funding your AvaTrade Account
Traders can choose from five different base currencies for their AvaTrade account including the pound sterling (GBP), the euro (EUR), the US dollar (USD), the Australian Dollar (AUD), and Swiss Franc (CHF).
That said, an AUD account is only available for residents of Australia while a GBP account is only available for UK clients.
This is an advantage for clients whose local currency is one of these 5, as they can save money by avoiding currency conversion fees.
While debit or credit card deposits should be reflected instantly, traders have reported that, in some cases, it takes a few hours for the money to show up in the account’s available balance.
Bank transfers, on the other hand, may take a few days to clear and transfers can only be sent from an account held by the verified user of the AvaTrade account.
No deposit fees are charged by AvaTrade for any of the above-mentioned payment methods.
Markets & Products Offered by AvaTrade
AvaTrade offers CFDs for various financial assets including stock and forex CFD.
This means that these financial assets cannot be traded directly by using this trading platform, as they can only be traded via CFDs.
The portfolio of CFDs available on AvaTrade include:
- 20 stock index CFDs.
- 630 individual stock CFDs.
- 5 ETF CFDs.
- 17 Commodity CFDs.
- 2 Bonds CFDs.
Additionally, this broker offers 56 currency pairs and 17 different cryptocurrencies.
Compared to its rivals, AvaTrade’s portfolio of available products is fairly limited, especially when it comes to ETFs, bonds, and individual stock CFDs.
Meanwhile, AvaTrade offers the alternative of using two social trading platforms – ZuluTrade and DupliTrade – which require a minimum deposit of $500 and $2,000 respectively to be accessed.
Other Important Information About AvaTrade
There are various risks associated with CFD trading that investors should understand before they start buying and selling these financial instruments.
The following AvaTrade review explains some of the risks involved in trading CFDs to help investors in considering whether they want to be exposed to such risks or not.
Some of these risks are:
- You can lose more money than your deposit if a leveraged trade moves against you.
- Retail investor accounts may be closed if your balance falls below a certain minimum threshold.
- Potential slippage may occur, which means your trades may not be closed at the exact stop price of your stop-loss order, causing you to lose more money than expected.
- With CFDs, you don’t hold the underlying financial asset tied to the contract.
- There are holding costs involved if CFDs are held for longer than one day.
- CFD trading is not a suitable practice for investors seeking a stable source of income as no dividends are paid on the underlying securities.
AvaTrade Review Summary
- AvaTrade was founded in 2006 and it is registered in the British Virgin Islands as AVA Trade EU Ltd
- The company is headquartered in Dublin, Ireland
- AvaTrade also has operations in Australia, South Africa, France, Italy, and Spain and serves more than 200,000 clients
- AvaTrade’s client base is spread across 120 countries
- AvaTrade’s platforms are called Webtrader and AvaOptions
- AvaTrade also supports MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5
- This broker is regulated by various tier-1 institutions including the Central Bank of Ireland and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)
- Approximately 71% of the accounts that trade CFDs with this provider lose money
- AvaTrade can be considered a safe platform to trade CFDs due to its extensive regulatory coverage
- There’s a €20,000 protection for EU investors provided by the Central Bank of Ireland
- There’s negative balance protection for EU clients
- Clients can open an account with AvaTrade in a few minutes through an online registration process
- There are four types of accounts that can be opened with AvaTrade
- AvaTrade offers an Islamic account that doesn’t pay swaps
- Professional trading accounts require prior experience in the financial sector and a portfolio of at least .€500,000
- The minimum deposit for a standard account is $100 for credit card and debit card deposits and $500 for bank transfers
- An account with AvaTrade can be opened in five different base currencies to avoid currency conversion fees
- Credit card and debit card deposits should be credited instantly but they often experience a few hours of delay
- Bank transfers are credited after various business days
- No deposit fees are charged by AvaTrade regardless of the method or amount
- AvaTrade offers stock, bond, crypto, commodity, index, and forex CFD, among others
- AvaTrade’s portfolio of CFDs is fairly smaller than its competitors
- Social trading is available via ZuluTrade and DupliTrade but a minimum balance of $500 and $2,000 is required
- AvaTrade’s web-platform is well-designed and user-friendly but lacks a two-step login and alerts
- No customization is available for the web-based version of Webtrader
- The desktop platform of Webtrader is not as well-designed as the web-version but MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 are also available on desktop versions
- The mobile app is well-designed and organized. It is available for both iOs and Android
- The mobile app introduces a type of order called AvaProtect that reimburses losses for traders during the time period covered by the feature
- The platform offers the traditional three order types – market, limit, and stop – along with AvaProtect (mobile only)
- AvaTrade’s trading fees are average compared to its rivals but a bit lower once all costs are considered
- AvaTrade offers a wide range of research tools including an incredible news feed – Market Buzz -, economic calendar, and two idea hubs called ‘Analysts View’ and ‘Forex Featured Ideas’ for forex traders
- Charting and trading tools include 90 different technical indicators
- Charts can be customized and edited to a high degree
- AvaTrade offers a demo account for new users to test its interface and trading tools
- Educational tools include platform tutorials, beginner and advanced CFD and forex trading guides, and eBooks
- AvaTrade’s customer service channels include live chat, phone, and e-mail
- No 24/7 support is offered by AvaTrade
- Customer support reps can handle many languages
- No withdrawal fees are charged by this broker
- Withdrawals typically take one business day for credit, debit cards, and electronic wallets while bank transfers may take various business days to clear
- The amount that can be withdrawn from an account to a debit or credit card cannot exceed 200% of a prior deposit
- No minimum amounts are required to withdraw money from an account on AvaTrade
AvaTrade Review Summary
Best Trading Platform Overall: 4.9/5 Stars
- Regulated by top-tier financial authorities
- Serving over 200,000 clients worldwide
- Customer support available in many languages
- Social Trading Available
- Five Basic Currencies Available