Nadex offers a great platform for active traders with an interest in day trading, low fees, comprehensive educational material, and good customer support.
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.
Are you an options trader? You’ll need a regulated platform that you can trust — in terms of both performance and safety.
In this light, it doesn’t really get any better than Nadex.
In the US for example, binary options are legal to trade — but only through a CFTC-regulated exchange. And, you guessed it, Nadex is one of them.
Beyond security and peace of mind, Nadex offers prices and features that even unregulated platforms can’t keep up with. Ready to learn more?
Let’s dive in.
- Demo Account: Yes
- Regulation: CFTC-regulated
- Account Minimum: $250
- Fees: $1 per contract (no cap)
- Best for: Active traders with an interest in day trading
- Asset coverage: Forex pairs, stock indices, and commodities
- Commissions & Fees: 8/10
- Investment Selection: 6/10
- Account Options & Features: 7.5/10
- Usability: 7/10
- Educational Resources: 9.5/10
- Customer Service: 7/10
- Overall: 8/10
Investor Warning: Trading on Nadex involves risk and may not be appropriate for all. Members risk losing their cost to enter any transaction, including fees. You should carefully consider whether trading on Nadex is appropriate for you in light of your investment experience and financial resources. Any trading decisions you make are solely your responsibility and at your own risk. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results. None of the material on nadex.com is to be construed as a solicitation, recommendation or offer to buy or sell any financial instrument on Nadex or elsewhere. Nadex is subject to U.S. regulatory oversight by the CFTC.
- Varied selection of products to trade all market conditions
- Low fees and minimums
- Great educational content
- Excellent customer service
- Limited research reports and tools
- Instrument list isn’t great in comparison to competitors like Oanda
What is Nadex? A Forex + Binary Options Broker
Nadex is a North American Derivatives Exchange, founded in 2009. Based in Chicago, the exchange focuses on short-term binary option, Knock-out and call spread contracts.
The exchange is fully regulated and allows traders in the US to trade binary options legally. The company is a subsidiary of London’s IG Group.
2019 brought massive change to the North American division of IG as it re-established itself by re-opening an FX brokerage firm in Chicago., believing that it had more to offer US retail FX traders, and could compete with the limited competition.
In January 2019 the newly formed forex broker joined Daily FX and Nadex under the company’s US division, IG Group LLC. This resulted in its return to Chicago, where it launched its new website, a move that was seen as a mission to turn FXtrading on its head.
While expectations for the company were high, all was quiet until late 2019 when it was announced that CEO Tim McDermott was to be replaced by Ian Peacock, President of IG’s US division. This was a bold but exciting move for the company.
Speaking on this, senior executives at IG Group said,
“We are particularly excited by the potential opportunity here. We’ve seen early positive signs and believe in our brand, high levels of customer service and tighter spreads. As discussed, the US FX market has been historically underserved with 3 providers in the retail margin FX market before IG entered – we estimate there are 90,000 active margin FX traders in the US.”
2020 proved to be an exciting year for the company, which has shown its commitment to the potential it sees in the region, and offering traders more.
Nadex Overview and Summary
- Nadex is a North American Derivatives Exchange, founded in 2009.
- In 2019, the IG Group made a bold decision to move back to Chicago, the original destination of its head office, where it launched its new website with a mission to turn Fx trading on its head.
- As Nadex specifically caters to trading binary options and spreads.
- Nadex spreads give traders significant benefits when it comes to leverage.
- Nadex’s fees are low, and transparent, with a good leverage.
- Nadex has an innovative, free desktop trading platform that runs on PC and Mac. The platform is pretty standard, but it’s fast, reliable, easy-to-use, and intuitive.
- Research tools and insights are lacking on the website. There is limited analysis on individual securities and no third-party research providers, so any traders that value researching before trading will need to do it in their own way.
- Active, experienced traders with an interest in day trading are best suited to Nadex.
Is Nadex Safe?
While account hacks and scammers have become more frequent in the binary space, Nadex is a trusted, CFTC regulated United States exchange, and legal in the US only.
The company is designated by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission as a Designated Contract Market and Derivatives Clearing Organization.
The CFTC is a US Government agency with a mission “to protect market users and the public from manipulation, fraud, abuse, and systemic risk.”
Nadex goes beyond meeting physical, electronic, and procedural safeguards to keep clients personal data secure.
Nadex holds all funds in segregated bank accounts at Fifth Third Bank and BMO Harris Bank.
In addition, Nadex’s pricing is transparent, and the company explains its products, markets and trading platform well.
The firm has a useful and informative FAQs page, and even has some tips on how to make an informed and safe choice when trading binary options with an offshore broker or provider, including asking whether they are based in the US and if it is legal for them to solicit customers in the US? “Hint: it’s not,” they write.
List of Countries Eligible to Use Nadex
|British Virgin Islands||Hungary||Malaysia||Spain|
|Denmark||Isle of Man||New Zealand||United Kingdom|
Is Nadex a Legitimate, Trustworthy Platform?
Since Nadex is regulated by the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) as a Derivatives Clearing Organization and a Designated Contract Market – it represents a trifecta you are unlikely to find elsewhere.
Nadex meets or exceeds federal data security and privacy standards from all angles – physical and electronic, practices and procedures, client privacy and accounting funds segregations are all closely watched and monitored.
Nadex makes every effort to clearly and simply explain what it is, what it does, what the exchange platform offers and how to use it. The frequently asked questions (FAQ) section on the website is often cited by users as particularly helpful for getting newcomers up to speed quickly.
An Exchange vs. a “Broker”
As a CFTC-registered Exchange and Clearinghouse, Nadex complies with the following regulations;
- Nadex does not participate in trades, and it matches buyers and sellers
- All customer funds are held in segregated accounts in top-tier US banks
- Unlike brokers whose fees come from taking a market position, Nadex’s income comes solely from exchange fees.
Nadex Investment Products
Nadex is the first CFTC-regulated exchange that enables US and international members to legally trade a wide range of markets. This allows customers to trade binary options and call spreads on Forex, stock indices, commodities, and certain economic events.
The firm is also launching two new contract types that enables customers to turn economic forecasts into trades. The contracts allow for the speculation of both weekly jobless claims reports and nonfarm payroll, in addition to how the market affects them.
Chief Commercial Officer at Nadex, Travis McGhee said, “The non-farm payroll and weekly jobless claims reports are large releases that give important insights into the health of the US economy. These are significant numbers that directly affect US markets.”
Once you sign up to Nadex you will have access to the complete range of markets and binary option contracts.
What Can I Trade with Nadex?
Nadex is quite extensive if what you are primarily looking for is to trade in binary options, knock-outs and call spreads. This is where Nadex shines and what the majority of traders who participate in this platform are actually seeking.
Asset classes available for trade:
- Indices (examples include Wall Street 30, US Small Cap 2000, US Tech 100, US 500, Japan 225, China A50, FTSE 100, Germany 30)
- Forex (examples include USD/CHF, EUR/USD, AUD/USD, EUR/GBP, GBP/USD, USD/CAD, USD/JPY, GBP/JPY, EUR/JPY, AUD/JPY)
- Commodities (examples include metals, energy and agriculture)
- “Macro-economic events” (examples include non-farm payrolls, weekly jobless claims)
Nadex Trading Hours
The Nadex exchange platform is open for business every day except from 5pm EST to 6pm EST, when Nadex suspends trading to perform routine exchange platform maintenance.
Otherwise, active regular trading hours and closures are as follows:
- Monday through Thursday: 6pm EST (of the prior day) to 5pm EST (of the trading day).
- Friday: 6pm EST to 4:15pm EST.
- Saturday and Sunday: Nadex is closed.
Each business day, trading hours as noted above here start at 6pm EST the previous day and run until 5pm EST on the day of. As an example, trading for a typical Tuesday would begin at 6pm EST Monday evening and run until 5pm EST Tuesday.
Nadex Account Options Explained
Nadex offers four account options for domestic and international users. Three are live trading accounts and one is a training/demo account. Only the training account and one individual account are available for international traders.
The website states that sometimes it may be necessary to upload images from additional documents and gives instructions for how to do that.
1. Individual (U.S.) account. The individual U.S. account is free and simple to open (however, there is a minimum of $250 in funding to start using it to trade). You will need to enter your full name, date of birth and either your social security number or relevant visa information.
2. Individual (international) account.To open an individual international account, you need to enter your full name, social security number or national identification number and full residential address.
3. Training (demo) account. This is a 30-day trial account which starts with $10,000 in funds. If an individual has an active live account, their demo account can then be made permanent.
It can even be used in conjunction with live trading to test out different options before placing your trades. It takes less than a minute to set up a training account and no personal information or verification is required.
4. Business account (domestic only). A business account is available for entities such as trusts, partnerships, LLCs and corporations that are domiciled in the United States. To set up a business account, you will need to contact Nadex directly (email: firstname.lastname@example.org).
You will need to complete a Nadex Entity Membership Agreement and Uniform Consent Agreement, complete a W-9 and provide official identification for each name on the account. You will also need to submit documents related to your entity type.
Nadex Customer Support
The Nadex customer support team is knowledgeable and helpful. Nadex account specialists can be contacted from 7:00 AM to 8:00 PM ET, Monday to Thursday, and current Nadex clients can reach a representative from 3:00 PM ET Sunday through to 5:00pm ET Friday, by live chat or email.
The live chat feature is an added bonus with Nadex, demonstrating their priority when it comes to customer service.
Special Features with Nadex
As Nadex specifically caters to trading binary options and spreads, there are numerous features that focus on enabling and supporting this. Customers rave about them in reviews, and they might help you take your trading to the next level. Some additional Nadex features include:
Clients get access to free, real-time streaming of market data directly from the exchange, because Nadex itself is an exchange, and not a broker.
A range of sophisticated charts and tools will help trades develop a good set of techniques, including an Out the Money (OTM) strategy.
Traders can place orders directly through the platforms price ladder charts, in addition to giving users the ability to select your markets, chart analysis and place an order from one screen.
Here’s a list of the charts and technical features you’ll be able to access with Nadex:
- Numerous customization options for charts.
- Two options for charting intervals: time, tick.
- Different chart types: candlestick, mountain, hloc, line, et al.
- Mainstream technical indicators: oscillators, RSI, average true range, Bollinger bands, moving average, et al.
- Drawing tools: Fibonacci, Gann, Elliott, et al.
- Option to set up a variety of watchlists and switch between them using a drop-down menu. Once set up, watchlists can also be saved for future use.
- Finder feature is simple to use and navigate – users like that there is no search engine involved. Rather, the finder is organized based on folders and sub-folders.
There are also a few neat perks not found with the majority broker-based trading platforms. With Nadex, you’ll be able to access streaming real-time exchange market data right from within the interface itself.
You can transition between views and tools and even place your orders without ever once having to switch screens. Nadex’s interface imposes floor/ceiling levels so you can always view your proposed profit/loss spread before you even place your trade.
Nadex is ideal for traders who utilize market news to create and hone a binary strangle. The exchange provides daily commentary and videos on current market events that can help you decide and strategize your next move. All content is created by Nadex’s own experts.
Nadex Call Spreads
Nadex’s binary options, knock-outs and call spreads have a maximum profit and loss that traders will be aware of in advance. This means that there is limited risk and you will never lose more than the displayed amount, which you will see on your order ticket before you confirm your trade.
This also means that Nadex clients won’t be charged commission fees. Instead, traders will pay a set fee of $1 per contract.
With this, it is good to know that Nadex does not charge settlement fees if a binary options contract expires against the trader. Nadex will not trade against its traders, because trading and settlement fees are the firm’s main source of income. This will potentially lower your trading costs, and might increase your profits.
Nadex Leverage Explained
Nadex spreads ensure that traders will also have significant benefits when it comes to leverage.
Usually, US forex traders will get a leverage of 50:1 at best. Nadex spreads however, do not involve margin, and are completely collateralized. Nadex products are not leveraged, but more of an option for the short-term. That said, in most cases, Nadex spreads can be priced lower than the current market price.
Nadex Fees: Transparent and Low
Nadex fees are clear and transparent. Clients will be given due notice and all fees will be clearly outlined. A $25 returned deposit fee will apply. Overall, Nadex offers low fees for trading and a good leverage, with a lower risk level.
The Nadex fee structure is as follows:
- Account maintenance fee: no annual fee.
- Account inactivity fee: After no activity for 12 months, $10 per month
- Account funding fee: no fee for ACH transfers from bank account or debit card.
- Account wire transfer fee: $25 per transaction for domestic or international.
- Account check deposit fee: no fee to deposit funds from a checking account (although the website clearly states that using a savings account or any account where there is not an exact name match with your Nadex account may cause delays or complications in funding a live account).
What Nadex Does Best
Education with Nadex
Nadex puts a good amount of effort into creating useful guides on binary options and spreads; what they are, and how they work. Everything is explained simply, and is easy to follow.
Again, the fact that Nadex is not a broker works in the trader’s favor, because Nadex’s success is dependent on a traders long term success. It’s a win, win.
So, it is in Nadex’s best interest to provide clients with the best education, and they do; from free trading courses to videos, and trading e-books. The firm covers as many levels as possible, with an introduction to binary options for new traders to more complex guidebooks on trading in volatile markets.
This collection of references will help any trader go from novice to expert in a matter of time, while helping you make the best decisions along the way.
Nadex has an innovative, free desktop trading platform that runs on either a PC and Mac once you have internet. The platform is pretty standard, but it’s fast, reliable, easy-to-use, and intuitive.
As the platform is specifically designed for trading call spreads, knock-outs and binary options, it has all that’s needed for the trading of these, but it doesn’t go much beyond this.
The charts, which we highlighted above, are customizable, and there’s a limited selection of indicators, including Bollinger Bands, Average True Range, Moving Average, and RSI. The platform also has a good range of drawing tools, such as Fibonacci, and Eliott.
In August 2018, binary option trading apps were banned, leaving Nadex without an app on iOS and Android. CEO at the time, Tim McDermott said,
“As you may have heard, unregulated binary bucket shops have forced the hands of tech giants Apple and Google to ban binary option trading apps… Against our best efforts, we were forced to remove binary options from our iOS and Android apps in October  and May , respectively, despite being a U.S.-based, CFTC-regulated exchange.”
In response to this Nadex launched NadexGo, an advanced web app that needed no updates or downloads. The app allows users to see Nadex’s product range and offers real-time access to the market, great tools that you can use for account management, full charting and analysis features. Overall, it’s pretty much the same as the version for desktop, but pocket-sized.
Where Nadex Could Do Better
Research & Insights
Insights and research tools are lacking on the website. There is limited securities analysis and no third-party providers for research, so any traders that value researching before trading will need to do it in their own way.
Nadex’s educational section however does provide webinars that offer market analysis and insights from experts. The news section also includes market commentary, with analysis on specific commodities and currencies.
How To Open An Account With Nadex
Opening an account with Nadex is pretty simple. Simply choose between a US and an international account, accessible for people across 40 countries.
The application process should only take five minutes and you will be asked for the following information:
- Date of birth
- Proof of address
- Social Security Number or National Identification Number
You may need to upload supporting documents to confirm your information, and once you are approved you are under no obligation to trade until you are ready.
Does Nadex Offer a Demo Account?
Traders can access a demo account. You will receive $10,000 of virtual money to play with, and if you like it, you can apply for an account, and fund it through a variety of ways including; debit card, wire transfer, ACH, or paper check. Traders outside of the U.S can fund it using a debit card or international bank transfer.
The Bottom Line
Nadex is a fully regulated exchange that offers some fantastic special features, low and transparent rates, helpful customer service and a comprehensive educational section.
Nadex’s platform is excellent and its mobile version is pretty much the same but in a smaller size. The firm’s research tools and insights let it down most.
Overall, Nadex is the perfect ‘option’ if you are a short-term binary options or spreads trader. It can be accessed on over 5,000 contracts, covering a wide range of assets including; Forex, stock indices, and commodities, in addition to trading on economic events.
Active traders with an interest in day trading are best suited to Nadex.
Nadex and the Competition
See how Nadex compares to the leading Forex brokers by reading one of the reviews below.