Online Brokers In Europe 2021 – Comparison & Reviews

Retail trading in Europe has surged in recent years, creating a vast range of online brokers. This wealth of choice means selecting the right broker can be a difficult task. In this guide, we help investors navigate the top online brokers in Europe, highlighting the key factors to consider when choosing between platforms.

Online Brokers In Europe

eToro is a multi-asset platform which offers both investing in stocks and cryptoassets, as well as trading CFDs.
Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
FCA
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
$200 ($50 in US)
Min. Trade
$1
Bonus
None
Forex.com boast a global reputation. Regulated in the UK, US and Canada they offer a huge range of markets, not just forex, and offer very tight spreads and a cutting edge platform.
Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
NFA, CFTC, FCA, FSA, IIROC and CIMA
MT4 Integration
Yes
Min. Deposit
$100
Min. Trade
$1
Bonus
None
NinjaTrader offer Traders Futures and Forex trading. Use Auto-trade algorithmic strategies and configure your own trading platform, and trade at the lowest costs.
Cryptocurrency
No
Regulator
NFA, CFTC
MT4 Integration
Yes
Min. Deposit
$50
Min. Trade
Varies by asset
Bonus
None
The leading US trading Exchange. Nadex offer genuine exchange trading to US clients on Binary Options. Fully regulated by the CFTC.
Cryptocurrency
No
Regulator
CFTC
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
$250
Min. Trade
$1
Bonus
None
M1 Finance offers customizable and automated trading services for US investors.
Cryptocurrency
No
Regulator
FINRA, SEC
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
$100
Min. Trade
$1
Bonus
$4,000 switching bonus
Bit Mex Offer the largest market liquidity of any Crypto exchange. Ultra low trading costs and minimum deposit requirements. Join in 30 seconds.
Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
0.0001 XBT
Min. Trade
0.0001 XBT
Bonus
None
Coinbase is the easiest place to buy, sell, and manage your cryptocurrency portfolio.
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Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
CBoI
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
0 $/€/£
Min. Trade
0.0001 XBT
Bonus
None
Quotex offers a proprietary web platform that offers digital options and copy trading.
Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
IFMRRC
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
$10
Min. Trade
$1
Bonus
40% deposit bonus
Binance is one of the leading online crypto exchanges offering Bitcoin.
Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
FCA
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
No minimum
Min. Trade
$10
Bonus
None
EagleFX is a popular trading broker offering forex, stocks, cryptos & commodities.
Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
Unregulated
MT4 Integration
Yes
Min. Deposit
$10
Min. Trade
0.01 lots
Bonus
None
LQDFX offers online trading with multiple STP accounts and MT4 analysis tools.
Cryptocurrency
No
Regulator
None
MT4 Integration
Yes
Min. Deposit
$20
Min. Trade
0.01 lots
Bonus
100% deposit bonus up to $20,000
Kraken is a top crypto trading exchange offering the largest altcoins by market cap.
Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
FCA, FinCEN, FINTRAC, AUSTRAC, FSA
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
0.0001 XBT
Min. Trade
0.0002 XBT
Bonus
None
Webull offers a leading online stock trading app with low fees and generous bonuses.
Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
SEC & FINRA
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
No minimum
Min. Trade
0.01 lots
Bonus
Two free stocks joining bonus
Gemini is a leading crypto trading exchange with low fees and a long list of altcoins.
Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
FCA
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
None
Min. Trade
0.00001 BTC
Bonus
None
Paxful is a crypto trading exchange and digital wallet offering low fees and easy sign-up.
Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
None
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
From 0.005 BTC
Min. Trade
10 USD
Bonus
None
Zulutrade provide multiple automation and copy trading options across forex, indices, stocks, cryptocurrency and commodities markets
Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
HCMC
MT4 Integration
Yes
Min. Deposit
$1 to $300 (Broker choice dependent)
Min. Trade
$1
Bonus
None
ZacksTrade: Built For The Active Trader. Stock & ETF Trades from $3, 75¢ Option Contracts and 5.63% Margin Rate (Lower on occasion)
Cryptocurrency
No
Regulator
SEC
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
$2500
Min. Trade
From $3
Bonus
None
Coinmama aim to make entering the crypto market as easy as possible, offering BTC,ETH,LTC,ADA,BCH and XTZ
Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
€/£/$100
Min. Trade
€/£/$100
Bonus
None
IB Boast a huge market share of global trading. With a minimum deposit of $10,000 however, they remain an option for larger traders only.
Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
SEC, FCA
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
$10000
Min. Trade
$100
Bonus
None
One of the largest discount brokers in the US, with a fixed trading commission and access to a large array of trading products and securities
Cryptocurrency
No
Regulator
SEC
MT4 Integration
No
Min. Deposit
None
Min. Trade
None
Bonus
60 days free trades when depositing $3k
Just2Trade offer hitech trading on stocks and options with some of the lowest prices in the industry
Cryptocurrency
Yes
Regulator
FINRA, SIPC, NFA
MT4 Integration
Yes
Min. Deposit
£2500
Min. Trade
1 contract
Bonus
None
Show All Brokers ⇩

How To Compare Online Brokers In Europe

With a population of over 700 million, Europe is one of the biggest trading markets in the world. Plus, in recent times, increased time at home has meant that more traders are looking to maximise their personal finances. This increased demand has meant the pool of online brokers in Europe has broadened.

Finding the right online broker is more important than ever with so many options in the market. But it’s not just about choosing the right asset at the right price, there are many other factors to consider. We’ve listed the top things to look out for below.

Assets & Markets

European Stocks

Nearly every country in Europe has a stock exchange. Five of these are considered major and have a market capitalization of over $1 trillion. European stock exchanges make up two of the top 10 major global stock markets. Europe’s largest stock exchange is Euronext; connecting seven economies based in Amsterdam, Brussels, Dublin, Lisbon, London, Oslo, and Paris with the 1,870 companies listed. The London Stock Exchange (LSE) is the second-largest in Europe, listing around 2,000 companies. Both exchanges have the same trading hours and are open from 8 AM to 4:30 PM (GMT) Monday to Friday.

Cryptocurrency

Within the EU, crypto assets are classified as qualified financial instruments (QFIs) and are therefore are legal to trade. Exchanges that deal in QFIs are regulated at a regional level. Firms that hold a QFI licence are permitted to sell cryptocurrency-related products. Online brokers in Europe must comply with EU legislation to obtain this licence.

Forex

The London trading session accounts for around 35% of the total average forex turnover globally. During this session, currency pairs including EUR/USD and GBP/USD are traded with tighter spreads due to the high market liquidity. Every country has its own regulator, but European law allows firms to operate financial services within any country in the EU as long as they are regulated by at least one European authority. The EU legislation that governs these bodies is known as MiFID.

Commodities

The majority of online commodity trading in Europe takes place in either spot markets or futures markets. The most recognised commodity exchange in Europe is the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), an electronic commodity exchange with no physical trading floor.

Many of the top online brokers in Europe will offer futures and commodity trading. Popular assets include gold, silver, crude oil and brent oil.

Indices

Well-known indices from Europe include the FTSE 100 (UK), the Euro Stoxx (Europe), and the DAX 30 (Germany). The best online brokers in Europe will offer the ability to trade CFDs or ETFs on at least one of these.

Tools & Platforms

Successful trading requires top execution speeds, real-time data and convenient charting and analysis tools. Degiro and Interactive Brokers are considered some of the best online stock brokers in Europe for their platform features. Both provide simple navigation and comprehensive analysis tools. They also offer mobile app compatibility with the full suite trading features available on desktop and web browser. Trading in Europe

Fees

The best online brokers in Europe will be transparent about their fee structure. Since these can vary between platforms dramatically, it’s vital that traders shop around to be confident the fees being promoted are competitive in the market.

Fees generally come in the form of commissions (per trade) or spreads (mark-up). The top online brokers in Europe for commission-free trading include:

  • Degiro – Offering one commission-free ETF trade per month, regardless of size. After that, international ETF trading costs €2 plus 0.03% of the order value. Stock trading charges vary but investment on the London Stock Exchange is charged at £1.75 plus 0.022%
  • XTB – Commission-free stocks and ETF trades in selected European countries. CFDs on stocks and ETFs are charged from 0.08% per lot
  • eToro – EU investors can benefit from zero commissions on stocks and ETF trading. Commodities, crypto, forex, and indices are offered at competitive spreads

Other charges to consider are inactivity fees, account maintenance, plus withdrawal and deposit fees. Sometimes there are third-party costs passed on to clients from the broker. These could include exchange access fees, bank transfer fees and currency conversion fees.

Leverage

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) introduced industry-wide limits on leverage for spread betting, forex, and CFD products offered to retail clients in 2018. The maximum leverage by asset is listed below.

  • 1:30 for major currency pairs
  • 1:20 for non-major currency pairs, gold and major indices
  • 1:10 for commodities other than gold and non-major equity indices
  • 1:5 for individual equities
  • 1:2 for cryptocurrencies

Demo Account

The majority of the best online brokers in Europe offer demo accounts. These are a great way to navigate platform features, practise day trading strategies and understand available assets. You can access virtual funds in simulated live market conditions. The majority of the top online brokers in Europe offer these, including XTB, eToro, and IG.

Regulation

Regulated brokers are governed by rules that aim to protect retail traders. Although not mandatory, it is highly recommended to select online brokers in Europe that comply with regulations. Unregulated stock brokers in Europe could mean a lack of trader protection, financial harm, plus poor customer and platform services. Traders can verify a broker’s licence number on the respective financial authority database.

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) is an independent European Union financial regulatory body. The main functions of the authorisation are to encourage information transparency, promote efficient and stable financial markets, and to safeguard retail traders. This is an established body formulating guidelines for the trading brokers in Europe since 2001. The ESMA authority provides:

  • Supervision – Directly overseeing financial bodies and trade repositories
  • Standardisation – Sharing best practices and improving efficiencies
  • Rules – Providing a rulebook for EU financial markets, aiming to create equal opportunities for investors and EU bodies by advising on legislation and developing technical standards
  • Risk –  Managing investor hazards, including market stability. Anticipatory action can be taken to avoid problems that threaten these

The Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID) is a European regulation that increases transparency across the European Union’s financial markets and standardises regulation requirements for firms operating in the area. It has been functioning since 2007. MiFID sets only basic requirements so regulator restrictions can vary between countries. Some countries, such as Bulgaria and Malta, only meet the basic requirements while others, including the United Kingdom and Switzerland, operate above these. However, transparency, segregation of funds, and investor compensation rules are all mandatory.

Some examples of MiFID protections include the restriction of bonuses and promotions to retail traders and the mandatory provision of negative balance protection on margin accounts.  This stringent financial regulation creates a safe environment for those who invest with an EU-based broker.

ESMA Logo

Specific Regulators

Above we have described regulation that applies to brokers in Europe. In the EU, if a financial services firm is regulated by a European authority that applies MiFID, they can practice in any member state. This is no longer the case for the UK, which since Brexit, sits outside of the the EU. In this section, we explore the most common regulators and their respective countries.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) – The UK

The FCA was established in 2013 to protect UK consumers, enhance the integrity of the British financial system, and serve the interests of clients by encouraging healthy competition between financial services companies.

FCA regulation is mandatory for online brokers in Europe selling their services to UK clients. The FCA will ensure that those offering investments can make sensible decisions in their clients’ interests and will also be held accountable for their actions. However, this is not the same for cryptocurrencies. Even if they hold FCA regulation, crypto exchanges will not be held accountable for fluctuations in the value of assets and the loss this can cause.

The Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC) – The EU

The CySEC was launched in 2001 and is the largest regulator of forex and binary options brokers in the world. Its main responsibilities are to supervise brokers and distribute licenses to platforms while protecting customers. The CySEC promotes freedom of trading, allowing retail traders to implement various strategies, such as using high leverage and hedging.

Customer Support

Customer support is vital when reviewing online brokers in Europe. Common issues include platform installation problems, account opening queries, or deposit and withdrawal issues. The best online brokers in Europe offer 24/7 multilingual customer support methods, including email, live chatbots and telephone.

Security

It’s also important to consider the security of an online broker in Europe before investing, particularly with regard to payments, personal data and account privacy. A broker’s years of service can also be a good gauge for safety, indicating the maturity of services and operations. Plus, online brokers in Europe that are recognised by a top-tier regulator (such as the CySEC and FCA) should provide sufficient levels of security protection. Look out for PC and mobile data encryption, payment method protection, and 2-factor authentication (2FA).

Trading Taxes In Europe

It is a trader’s responsibility to file their own taxes based on investment activity. The amount owed varies by European country, averaging around 19.5%. Denmark levies the highest tax of all European countries at 42%.

A withholding tax is deducted from any bank interest and income from bonds earned by European residents on investments made in other member countries. This applies to 28 European member states including Spain, Germany, Greece, and France. This ensures residents of one country do not evade tax by depositing funds outside the jurisdiction.

The majority of European countries comply with the EU Savings Directive, disclosing account holder names and earned interest. The EU withholding tax is not applicable on trading profits, dividends from shares or profits realised on investments.

Note, this information should not be taken as tax advice. Consult an expert to find out more about paying tax on your earnings.

Final Word; Online Brokers In Europe

Online brokers in Europe tend to provide a safe and secure trading environment for retail traders thanks to the stringent regulation and guidelines. We’ve listed some of the key factors when choosing the best online brokers in Europe. Consider which assets you want to trade first and in what volume, as this could impact your search and limit your choices.

FAQs

Which Assets Can Be Traded With Online Brokers In Europe?

The most popular day trading markets include forex, commodities, stocks, futures, and cryptocurrencies. Products such as CFDs and ETFs are also common.

Who Regulates Online Brokers In Europe?

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) is an independent European Union financial regulatory body. Its main aims are to promote information transparency, efficient and stable financial markets, and to safeguard retail traders.

What Are The ESMA Maximum Leverage Limits For Online Brokers In Europe?

All online brokers in Europe are subject to ESMA leverage caps. These were introduced to protect retail investors from undue risk and include a maximum leverage rate of 1:30 for major currency pairs, 1:20 for major indices, and 1:2 for cryptocurrencies.

Do Online Brokers In Europe Offer Paper Trading?

Yes, the best online brokers in Europe offer demo accounts. These are a good way to understand platform navigation, access real-time market simulation, and practise trading strategies with virtual funds before opening a live account.

What Are The Main Features To Review When Choosing Online Brokers In Europe?

Retail clients should consider the following: fees, regulation, market access, security, customer support, and tools. It’s important to evaluate which factors you require based on your personal trading volume, assets, and investing style.