Oanda Broker Review
- Commissions & Fees
- Investment Offerings
- Trading Platforms
- Customer Service
- Education and Research
When you think of Forex brokers, Oanda is one of the first that comes to mind. Oanda is a leader in the broker industry and features many tools and aspects that all traders look for. Read our review to learn more about Oanda and see if this broker has what is right for your trading.
Oanda can chart its history back to the mid-nineties. The broker was co-founded in 1996 by Dr. Michael Stumm and Dr. Richard Olsen. These men formed the bedrock of what was at the time, one of the most innovative companies in the sector. Oanda was one of the earliest pioneers in online forex trading, and in 2001 it created the first fully automated forex trading platform with FXTrade.
The company is still an industry leader, with an estimate that as much as 20% of global spot forex trades go through Oanda servers. They also offer some of the most used technical and sentiment indicators in the forex trading sector.
Oanda typically offers two account types. These are the standard account, utilized by the vast majority of retail and individual traders, and a premium account, used by high level corporate traders.
The standard account has no required minimum deposit, though opening of a premium corporate account will require a minimum $50,000 of funding.
Availability and Ease of Opening
Oanda accounts are available to residents in most countries worldwide. This extends to over 80 nations around the globe with some notable exceptions. These exceptions include South Korea, and New Zealand. Oanda is also one of the few retail forex brokers who can legally provide service to the United States residents.
Opening an account with Oanda could not be easier. Both live and demo accounts are available to open through the broker website. With the demo account, you can be open and trading a virtual $100,000 in under 5 minutes. Simply complete your basic personal information, and you are clear to proceed.
For live accounts, the process is similarly easy. Simply complete the personal information, verify your identification documents through the automatic screening, and you are ready to being trading some of the over 70 currency pairs which Oanda has to offer.
Oanda focuses strongly on the currency market within which it has forged its reputation over the years. Because of this, the broker offers extensive trading in both minor and major currency pairs, with more than 70 currency pairs on offer for trading.
CFDs are also available in the following:
- Commodities (8 CFDs)
- Indices (16 CFDs)
- Precious Metals (23 CFDs)
- Bonds (6 CFDs)
Beyond this, Oanda does not offer any trading in other markets such equities or cryptocurrencies which are now becoming commonplace among brokers.
Oanda Commissions and Fees
Oanda offers traders two account pricing types depending on their levels of trading. These are, spread only, and core spread + commission. The core spread + commission account option is not available to EU based traders.
The spreads within the spread only pricing option are comparable to some other major brokers, though a little on the high-end. These spreads typically average between 1.2-1.4 pips on major currency pairs such as EUR/USD or USD/JPY.
Within the core spread + commission pricing option, spreads are much tighter at between 0.2-0.4 pips for the same major currency pairs. Commission on these trades’ averages at $5.00 per 100,000 units traded on both sides. Anything above or below 100,000 units is subject to commission on a pro-rata basis.
The Oanda fee on positions held overnight is very competitive at 1.14% for EUR based accounts and 1.65% for USD based accounts.
Oanda does impose and inactivity fee after 24-months of no trading activity. This fee stands at 10EUR/USD per month.
A fee for wire transfer withdrawals of 15EUR/USD is also imposed.
Platforms and Tools
Oanda offers a comprehensive range of platform options for every type of forex trader. In terms of desktop platforms, traders can use either MetaTrader 4 which is renowned among experienced traders for its high level of performance and multitude of professional tools and still well respected in the industry over a decade since its first release.
Beyond MT4, Oanda also offers its own desktop trading platform where traders can avail of a number of useful features including a currency heat map to easily display the markets current movements in a visual context, and also an open positions ratio which can easily chart the movements of the forex market in percentage terms.
Web Trading Platform
The web trading platform primarily offered by Oanda is its own proprietary FXTrade web trader. The web trading platform offers all of the same functionality as the desktop platform, though in a more user-friendly manner.
There are advanced charting options with more than 60 different indicators available, and the ability to customize almost every display chart within the platform based upon your needs.
There are also options available in the left side panel to open up news feeds from a variety of sources using the “Marketpulse” and “News” buttons. These both open in new windows when clicked.
For the more advanced users, there is also an API management function which can allow experienced traders to create and test their own automated trading strategies.
Oanda also offers a mobile trading platform available on both Android and iOS that is very user-friendly and consistent with many of the features offered in both the desktop and web trading platforms. With over 30 technical indicators, the ability to easily drag and drop, and confirmation and price alerts, the mobile trading platform loses none of its effectiveness and usability.
Oanda is immediately set apart from other brokers in the industry thanks to its vast experience. Being one of the original innovators in the industry means the platform automatically commands a lot of initial respect.
This respect is not just rooted in the past though. Oanda have maintained their position at the top of the market thanks to the introduction of cutting edge platforms which are user-friendly, and a pricing structure which is highly competitive within all markets.
These factors, in addition to the highly compliant nature of the platform and its service of U.S. residents are key reasons why they still remain a strong force within the forex trading industry.
Oanda Customer Service
Oanda customer support services are available by phone 24 hours a day between Sunday 1pm and Friday 6pm EST.
Email support is also available at any time, and live chat with a customer service agent via the Oanda website is available on a 24/6 basis whenever the markets are open.
Local support is available from the UK, USA, Japan, Singapore, and Canada.
Responsiveness of Oanda customer service has been noted as slow when compared with other brokers. Phone connection times have often been reported to exceed 10 minutes prior to connection with an agent, whilst email response times vary between 2-5 days.
Trustworthiness of Oanda
Oanda excels in being fully complaint within a number of different jurisdictions, these include the following:
These represent six of the most stringent compliance bodies in world finance, thus it is quite unusually and positive from a security aspect that Oanda is registered and compliant with all six. The broker’s long history within the industry, having been active now for more than 20 years, also helps to establish a strong position of trust among traders.
With a strong history of innovation in the forex industry, backed by a multitude of highly efficient platforms displaying strong user-friendliness, it is clear that Oanda have continued to maintain their high standards over the past two-decades. Where many brokers may have rested upon their accomplishments, Oanda have pushed to maintain their position at the forefront of the forex industry.
This consistently strong and trusted presence is reflected in the fact that Oanda servers still handle millions of trade queries on a daily basis.
- One of the most highly compliant and trusted names in the industry
- Web and mobile trading platforms are both accessible and very user-friendly.
- No minimum deposit required for standard account holders.
- A strong range of advanced charting tools to assist all levels of trader.
- Customer support waiting times can be lengthy.
- Limited product range with no cryptocurrencies, stocks, or equities.
- Desktop platform looks slightly dated and can be cumbersome to use.