Investing > Forex Trading in Singapore

Forex Trading in Singapore

In this review, we highlight the top five forex brokers in Singapore, including where each one shines and falls.

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Updated September 07, 2021

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Forex is becoming increasingly popular in Singapore. But you already know that, which is why you’re here. ✅

Singapore is a heavy-hitter in the Forex market. Now, the recent addition of a digital currency pegged to the Singaporean dollar is enticing more investors to buy in. Which broker will help you take advantage of this market boom?

The currency market in Singapore has drastically expanded, with more leading brokers joining the forex trading hub in 2020. Further, the crypto Singapore dollar XSGD stablecoin was recently released with the aim of helping to diversify the landscape (currently dominated by the USD). What does this mean for traders like you?

The sheer volume of this expansion could lead to a rise in scams. As such, you must ensure that the concerned broker is safe.

To determine this, you can check that the broker is regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS): Singapore’s regulatory watchdog. Reassuringly, MAS is known to impose some of the strictest forex regulations in the world to protect traders.

After this, the choice is dependent on your individual needs and preferences: Are you looking for a broker with low fees? Will you need a quality app for trading on-the-go? Or perhaps quality research tools will play a pivotal role in your trading success.

In this review, we go through the top five MAS regulated forex brokers in Singapore. We highlight each broker’s best quality, their fees, and outline some important pros and cons for you to consider.

In addition, we will shine a light on key insights into forex trading in Singapore, ultimately helping you make the best choice for you.

Ready for our top suggestions? Let’s get to it! 🔥

Top Forex Brokers in Singapore

After extensive research, we say the best forex brokers in Singapore are as follows:

  1. Pepperstone
    Best Overall
  2. City Index
    Best Premium Service
  3. Interactive Brokers
    Best for High-Volume Trading
  4. IG
    Best for Education
  5. Saxo Bank
    Best Investment Offering
  6. Plus500
    Best for Beginners

Best Forex Brokers in Singapore 🇸🇬

1. Pepperstone: Best Overall

Pepperstone offers traders a choice between three high-quality platforms, tight spreads, low fees, and even copy trading features.

Founded in 2010, this Australian brokerage boasts strong regulatory licenses, being regulated by the UK’s FCA and the Australian ASIC. It offers a fantastic all-around package with little in the way of flaws – making it our top pick overall.

Pros

  • Low fees and tight spreads
  • Offers three platforms
  • Wide variety of investment opportunities 
  • Good customer service
  • Copy-trading features

Cons

  • Small number of CFDs offered
  • Basic news flow
Visit Pepperstone on Pepperstone’s website

Opening an account with Pepperstone is a simple and straightforward matter. The fully digital application process can be finished in about 15 minutes, and although the brokerage states that it might take up to 3 days to verify your account, it usually takes less than a day.

Traders will have to meet the broker’s minimum deposit before they can start trading. At $200, it isn’t expensive at all, making Pepperstone quite accessible overall.

Another area where Pepperstone stands out is fees. The broker charges no account fees, inactivity fees, as well as no deposit and withdrawal fees. When it comes to trading fees, Pepperstone’s pricing structure is competitive overall – although the trading fees you will be subject to depend on the type of account you open.

There are two available account types – the standard account and the razor account. The average spread for the standard account is 1-1.3 pips on average, while the average spread for the Razor account ranges from 0-0.3 pips on average. However, the Razor account does charge more when it comes to commissions – making it a better choice for more experienced traders.

Clients will have access to 61 currency pairs, however, the offering of CFDs is much more modest, at just 127. Traders can access leverage of up to 500:1 – however, we advise caution when it comes to using high leverage.

Pepperstone also offers a demo account, which allows you to try out their services and give their platforms a test run without actually risking any money. And speaking of platforms, this brokerage offers a choice between three of them – MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader 5, and cTrader.

While both MT4 and MT5 are tried-and-tested industry-standard platforms, we’ve got to give the edge to cTrader – it offers the most powerful charting tools, as well as a very intuitive, user-friendly, and customizable design.

All three platforms are also available for mobile devices, and the associated apps provide most of the functionality as the baseline platforms. Pepperstone also offers a wide variety of copy-trading tools, including MirrorTrader, RoboX, ZuluTrade, and myFxbook.


2. City Index: Best Premium Service

CityIndex Homepage
City index provides clients with a diverse range of quality research tools.

City Index is based in London and offers traders access to CFDs, spread betting and forex. This broker was founded in 1983, and is regulated in Singapore by the regulatory authority in singapore.

Pros

  • Low fees for forex and index CFDs
  • Diverse range research tools
  • Quick and smooth account opening

Cons

  • Limited product portfolio
  • High stock CFD fees
  • Complex desktop platform
Visit City Index on City Index’s website

City Index is a popular, and trusted broker that offers quality products and services in almost all aspects. This broker offers a wide range of assets including, CFDs, forex, crypto, commodities, stocks and spreads. 

City Index Singapore offers tight spreads from 0.5 pips, 84 currency pairs and forex margins from 5%. Major, minor and exotic currency pairs are offered as spot FX or CFD contracts.

The broker offers a powerful platform with quality research tools and customizable charts. Educational resources are particularly beneficial; they are concise, well produced, and cover almost every forex-related topic necessary. The minimum account requirement for investors in Singapore is S$50. 

Educational resources are particularly beneficial; they are concise, well-produced, and cover almost every forex-related topic necessary. As for research, City Index’s in-house team of analysts provides clients with content each day. The minimum account requirement for investors in Singapore is S$150. 

Who is City Index best for? This broker appeals to a wide variety of traders interested in the Forex market. If you want to try out City Index’s platform before committing, there is a demo account available.


3. Interactive Brokers (IBKR): Best for High-Volume Trading

Interactive Brokers Homepage
 Interactive broker offers low trading fees and a wide product range.

Interactive Brokers is a globally renowned brokerage firm with a massive selection of tradable securities, and is frequently regarded as a top pick for forex brokers around the world.

Pros

  • Low trading fees
  • Wide range of products
  • Generous selection of research tools

Cons

  • High inactivity fee
  • Steep learning curve
  • Complex account opening process
Visit Interactive Brokers on Interactive Brokers’ website

Professional forex and CFDs traders will appreciate Interactive Brokers’ multi asset offering, sophisticated platform, and competitive fees. 

Interactive Brokers offers a huge range of 40,000+ instruments. In total, traders will gain access to 105 currency pairs, 7400 CFDs, and spot trading.

Aside from its minimum inactivity fees of USD 100, or the equivalent in S$, charged when there has been no account activity for six months, Interactive Brokers pricing is competitive. Commission for forex trading starts at 0.2 pips of the U.S. dollar trade value with a $2 per order minimum – this can fall by 50% for active traders.

Given the minimum commission charge of $2 per side, traders looking to trade below 100,000 units will find it quite expensive to do so. The minimum charge for IBKR can be compared with Saxo Bank’s $3 order fee when less than 50,000 units of currency is traded.

The downside here is that casual and inexperienced investors might feel intimidated by the complex trading platform and account opening process. As you can see, there are both pros and cons with Interactive Brokers.

For these reasons, Interactive Brokers is most popular with more experienced, active forex traders. And finally, what is IBKR’s minimum account deposit? IBKR requires a super low account minimum of S$0. 


4. IG: Best for Education

IG Homepage
IG is a leading broker, offering a top-class web trading platform and a huge variety of effective educational tools.

IG is a leading online trading and investments provider of spread betting and CFD trading, and a global leader in forex, giving access to thousands of markets through its intuitive platforms.

Pros

  • Top-class web trading platform
  • Highly effective educational tools
  • Wide variety of deposit and withdrawal options

Cons

  • High stock CFD fees
  • Limited product portfolio
  • Slow customer support
Visit IG on IG’s website

IG offers one of the top forex trading apps for investors in Singapore and is placed high for forex trading apps across the globe. It is (unsurprisingly) regulated by MAS, the relevant authority in Singapore. Traders in Singapore will gain access to forex, CFDs, options, indices, forex, commodities, and cryptocurrency with this broker.

IG Singapore offers clients access to a range of 17,000 global markets, and 104 currency pairs. The average EUR/USD spread for IG Singapore is low at just 0.745. The sheer size of IG allows it to offer competitive rates through its forex direct accounts. CFD average account spreads for mini and standard size contracts average 0.75 pips.

The minimum deposit requirement? Zero. For card deposits, however, IG requires a minimum of S450 per transaction, and the brokerage also charges a steep monthly inactivity fee – however, it only comes into play after two years of inactivity.

IG offers a range of platforms to choose from. The web-based platform focuses on usability while still retaining plenty of advanced research and charting functions. However, the star of the show is the L2 Dealer platform, which offers direct market access.IG is best for more advanced traders and market professionals. If you’re looking for a demo account, IG’s full offer includes one for free, which is great for individuals who would prefer to give the platform a try first.


5. Saxo Bank: Best Investment Offering

Saxo Markets Homepage
We believe Saxo is the top Forex broker you can find in Singapore.

Saxo Capital Markets offers traders a wide range of investments with effective research tools and powerful trading platforms. If you can afford the hefty minimum deposit, this brokerage can provide you with unparalleled access to the market.

Pros

  • Powerful trading platform
  • Effective research tools 
  • Impressive product portfolio

Cons

  • High minimum deposit
  • No live chat

Visit Saxo Bank on Saxo Bank’s website

Saxo Bank is considered safe and is regulated across 15 jurisdictions. The broker offers spot FX, FX options, CFDs, non-deliverable forwards (NDFs), ETFs, stocks, stock options, futures, and more.

Forex and CFD traders can take advantage of a sophisticated platform with a range of 170 forex pairs with spreads starting at just 0.4 pips and maximum leverage of 66:1.

Saxo Bank offers three account types: a classic account, a platinum account, and a VIP account. Average spreads for each are 0.8, 0.7, and 0.6, respectively. While the classic account offers industry-standard rates, the platinum and VIP accounts are best among the top forex brokers.  

The classic account requires the lowest initial minimum deposit of S$3,000, which is quite steep when compared to other leading brokers. Saxo’s educational materials are also a bit lacking – meaning that beginners and novices should probably steer clear of this broker.

When it comes to commissions, Saxo Bank offers commission-free trades, which means it earns its money from spreads. The only exception here is for clients trading below 50,000 units (half a standard lot) per month. In this case, clients will be charged a fee of $3 per side.Before you get started, clients can try out the platform and give your forex trading strategy a test-run, through Saxo Bank’s demo account.


6. Plus500: Best for Beginners

Plus500 homepage
Plus500 offers a user-friendly platform and easy account opening process.

Plus500 was founded in 2008 in Israel and has since grown significantly, becoming renowned for its beginner friendly platform and low fees.

Pros

  • Seamless account opening process 
  • User-friendly platform
  • Low CFD fees

Cons

  • Limited product range – CFDs only
  • Minimal research tools
  • Lack of educational material
Visit Plus500 on Plus500’s website

Investor Warning: 72% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Plus500 is considered safe and holds a license from the Monetary Authority of Singapore. As we mentioned, Plus500’s most notable offering is its WebTrader Platform. This software is easy to navigate, yet powerful, making it one of the leading forex brokers for beginners in Singapore, and around the globe.

Though, the platforms are not customizable and offer a limited range of research capabilities. Traders won’t find any educational material, apart from the demo account, but traders that already have a good educational basis could benefit from low prices and fees.

The downside? With Plus500’s platform, you’ll only be able to access CFDs. There are also only basic research tools provided, and the educational material offered isn’t even worth discussing.

To give the platform a test-run and get a feel for the products offered traders can try out the demo account. There is a standard minimum deposit of S$100. Traders in Singapore can access CFDs on forex, stocks, commodities, options, ETFs, and indices. However, the trading of cryptocurrency CFD is not covered under the regulatory authority in Singapore.

Plus500 is best for traders looking for a powerful yet user-friendly platform with low prices.


How to Trade Forex in Singapore 🎯

Wondering how to forex trading works in Singapore? It’s pretty simple, actually. Just follow the steps outlined below to get your own forex investment account up and running.

1. Choose a core device/platform: This can be your computer, I-pad, or even your phone, but keep in mind: the more screen space the better because you will be looking at a lot of complex information from news feeds, charts and analysis.

That said, if you prefer to trade on-the-go, your phone will likely be your key trading device and you will need to find a broker that offers a quality app—but more on this in step two.

2. Choose the most suitable forex broker: With more forex brokers popping up each year, choosing the best one to suit your level, needs and budget is more difficult. Make sure the broker has good research tools and is safe and regulated by MAS, the forex regulator in Singapore.

3. Opening your account: Depending on whichever broker your research suggests is best, go to its website and you should find an outline of the steps you will need to take to open an account. Typical requirements to get started include, a minimum deposit requirement, some general information such as your name and address, and more specific questions to determine your trading level and an appropriate leverage.

4. Fund your account: Check out if the broker has a demo account so that you can trade with a virtual account first. Once you are comfortable with the platform and the trading environment, then move onto real money. Usually, people use a connected bank account.

Your chosen broker might also accept checks and/or other transfer methods, but these are not as fast or flexible.

5. Choose the trading platform: Some brokers have a variety of trading platforms, make sure you understand the fees and tools that come with each to help you make the best decision. This will play a key role in your trading success.

6. Make a trade: Once your setup is finalized, you will be ready to execute your trades. To help you make the best possible decisions, be sure to read our complete guide to forex trading, and get to know all the basics of this type of trading.

Which Forex Brokers are MAS-Regulated? 🏛

Wondering which forex brokers are regulated in Singapore? There are a total of five MAS regulated forex brokers in Singapore: Saxo Bank, Interactive Brokers, Plus500, City Index, and IG. This means that each of these brokers are fully regulated and compliant with the regulatory authority in Singapore.

Best Forex Broker in Singapore

Our research suggests Saxo Bank is the best forex broker in Singapore. Saxo Bank offers a huge range of investments through a powerful trading platform, and effective research tools. On the downside, there is a higher initial minimum deposit of S$3,000.

Saxo Capital Markets offers traders a wide range of investments with effective research tools and powerful trading platforms.

How is Forex Regulated in Singapore? 🔎

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) is Singapore’s central bank and oversees forex brokers and general financial sector businesses. It is known for being one of the strictest regulatory authorities in the world.

In a similar manner to other regulatory authorities around the globe, MAS requires that brokers segregate investor accounts from broker funds. This helps to protect investors’ money if the broker goes insolvent or bankrupt.

Traders in Singapore might notice that most of the leading forex brokers are on the global stage, and are also monitored by other regulators around the world, such as Cyprus’s CySEC and the U.K.’s FCA.

For some additional information about Singapore’s forex market, check out Singapore’s Foreign Exchange Market Committee, a panel consisting of both private bank representatives and government authorities.

Forex Terminology in Singapore 💡

There are some key forex terms to be aware of when trading forex in Singapore, and around the world. Below we will outline a few of the most important forex terms.

Pip: A pip is the smallest amount that any currency can move in the forex market. It is usually correlated with S0.0001.

Lot size: If any investor is trading a standard lot size in the forex market it means they are trading 100,000 units.

Orders: In forex trading, an order works similarly to what you think of when you think of ordering a meal – you outline clearly what you want from the market and, if possible, you execute the trade. If the market isn’t offering what you are looking for then you can put the order in and wait until it does.

Calls: A call option is a contract that gives the buyers the right, but not the obligation, to buy a currency pair within a certain time frame at a specific price.

Example of Forex Terms in Real Life ✅

So, now that we’ve gone over the key terms, let’s put them into practice so you can really grasp their importance.

A trader could place an order to buy or sell at the best price available. For example, say the bid price for the US dollar versus the Singapore dollar (USD/SGD) is 1.3621 and the ask price is 1.3623 in October. The pip, in this case, is 0.0002. To buy the USD/SGD at market price, you will need to pay the ask price of 1.3623.

If you think the price will rise by January, you could buy a January call option for two lots. This locks in the current price, and if it rises by January, you make a profit.

Forex Trading Strategies in Singapore 📈

To become a successful forex trader, you will need to understand some basic strategies. An important factor is knowing the right time to trade forex. To help you, we will go through some key forex trading strategies below. 

Price Action Trading

A price action strategy requires traders to study the historical movement of price. This information will help you to identify potential entry and exit points for investments. This is usually used for short-term moves no longer than 1 week.

Trend Trading

Traders may use a trend trading strategy if the market is going in a clear direction. If a market has a definite direction, you can take advantage of trend trading. An uptrend means that a market is reaching elevated highs and elevated lows on pullbacks. 

A downtrend, on the other hand, is when the lows are lower and the highs are lower on retracements. Generally, strong trends mature in time, and therefore the strategy might need more long term focus over several weeks or months.

Range Trading

To implement range trading traders analyze a stock that is moving close to a certain price level and try to trade around it. This strategy is best for markets that do not show an obvious trend or any strikingly volatile movements.

In general, the forex market is less volatile than other markets, so this is one of the most important strategies to have in your armor.

Position Trading

If researching the long-term fundamentals of a currency is more of a strong-point for you then you could consider position trading. Position traders don’t take into consideration short-term movements in the forex market. 

Macroeconomic factors that don’t play a strong role in either range trading or price action strategies, play a key role in position trading.

Becoming a Successful Forex Trader 💰

Aside from the trading strategies just mentioned, there are other ways to successfully trade Forex in Singapore. The more strategies you understand, the more opportunity you have to earn a profit in varying market conditions. 

Below we will outline some popular strategies for trading forex in Singapore.

Going short: To do this, investors borrow a currency pair to sell it with the hopes that it will decrease in value in the future, allowing them to rebuy it for a lower price, and thus earning a profit.

Contracts for difference (CFDs): When trading CFDs, traders never own the physical currency. Instead, they own a contract with a fixed price, representing the currency.

Binary option: Binary options are known as “all or nothing”, or “fixed return” options. This is because binary options offer a black or white win/lose result, as opposed to relative profit or loss based on relative price movement. Some investors favour this because there is generally a higher ROI.

⚡️ Interested in an “all or nothing” approach? Take a look at the leading binary options brokers.

What Are The Singaporean Laws On Forex?

As mentioned, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) acts as Singapore’s Central Bank, and is the regulatory authority in Singapore, regulating more than 600 financial institutions, including forex brokers.

Singapore’s Government, although it has opened its doors to trade, has strict rules aimed at preventing corruption and financial malpractice. 

In Singapore, the role of MAS is to protect consumers from scams and malpractice. To do this, brokers must first hold a MAS license in order to offer its services to traders in Singapore. And getting a license is no easy feat. 

Brokers are required to pass several exams to show it is fit to offer its product and services to investors. Bankruptcy, for example, is a major cause of clients losing their money, such as when FXCM went bust in 2015. Therefore, brokers must prove they are financially stable.

How Has COVID-19 Impacted the Forex Market in Singapore?

COVID-19 has had significant effects on the forex market, and other markets across the globe. At the beginning of October, MAS, Singapore’s central bank maintained its currency policy, without change.

The central bank said, while an economic recovery is predicted in 2021, and a receding risk of disinflation exists, the underlying momentum for growth is likely to be weak and the negative output gap will slowly close in in the coming year. This coincided with the USD/SGD producing a renewed burst of bearish momentum. 

That said, reports in early October should work as a reminder to speculators that the forex market is unpredictable. Earlier reports surrounding Trump’s coronavirus confirmation caused a sudden and huge crisis in the worldwide marketplace. The USD/SGD saw an acceleration of risk-averse trading as the 1.36740 mark was tested.

When the markets started to calm the USD/SGD returned to values that existed before the Trump announcement shocked the markets. After this, the US jobs report showed improved global risk appetite and the USD/SGD bearish momentum fell further.

Forex Trading in Singapore FAQs

  • Is Forex Trading Equivalent to Gambling?

    To be a successful trader, it is imperative that you conduct thorough research and market analysis in order to create a well-thought-out, effective strategy. However, if you fail to put in due diligence then it can look more like gambling.

  • Is Forex Trading Taxable in Singapore?

    In the majority of cases, brokers do not have a taxing agency, therefore there are no tax deductions made. In Singapore, if you choose to trade Forex as a hobby, as opposed to it making up the majority of your income, any profit made will not be subject to tax. If, on the other hand, forex trading is your job, you will be legally required to pay sufficient taxes on this income.

  • Is Forex Trading Legal in Singapore?

    Yes, forex trading is legal in Singapore. The forex market has been gradually expanding and becoming more accessible to traders across the globe. 

    Singapore is one region that has seen a significant increase in financial trade. Evidence of this can be seen through Goldman’s recent expansion in building a forex trading hub in Singapore.

All reviews, research, news and assessments of any kind on The Tokenist are compiled using a strict editorial review process by our editorial team. Neither our writers nor our editors receive direct compensation of any kind to publish information on tokenist.com. Our company, Tokenist Media LLC, is community supported and may receive a small commission when you purchase products or services through links on our website. Click here for a full list of our partners and an in-depth explanation on how we get paid.

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