Dubai Financial Market

Dubai Financial Market (DFM) brokers offer access to one of the three stock exchanges in the UAE alongside the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange and Nasdaq Dubai. The first two are mostly made up of UAE companies, while the latter was created for trading international stocks. This investing tutorial explains listing requirements and rules, the top brokers with access to the Dubai Financial Market, trading tips and more. Find out how to compare the best DFM brokers in 2024.

Dubai Financial Market Exchange Brokers

These are the 5 best brokers for trading on the Dubai Financial Market:

#1 - AvaTrade

Why We Chose AvaTrade

AvaTrade is a leading forex and CFD broker, established in 2006 and regulated across 9 jurisdictions. Over 400,000 users have signed up with the broker which processes over 2 million trades each month. The firm offers multiple trading platforms, including MT4, MT5, and a proprietary WebTrader. 1250+ financial instruments are available for day trading, from CFDs to AvaOptions and now AvaFutures, alongside a comprehensive education center and multilingual customer support.

"AvaTrade offers the full package for short-term traders. There is powerful charting software, reliable execution, transparent fees, and fast account opening with a low minimum deposit."

- DayTrading Review Team
  • Instruments: CFDs, Forex, Stocks, Indices, Commodities, ETFs, Bonds, Crypto, Spread Betting, Futures
  • Regulator: ASIC, CySEC, FSCA, ISA, CBol, FSA, FSRA, BVI, ADGM
  • Platforms: WebTrader, AvaTradeGO, AvaOptions, AvaFutures, MT4, MT5, AlgoTrader, TradingCentral, DupliTrade
  • Minimum Trade: 0.01 Lots
  • Leverage: 1:30 (Retail) 1:400 (Pro)

Stock Exchanges

AvaTrade offers trading on 15 stock exchanges:

  • Australian Securities Exchange (ASX)
  • Borsa Italiana
  • Deutsche Boerse
  • Euronext
  • Hang Seng
  • IBEX 35
  • Japan Exchange Group
  • London Stock Exchange
  • Nasdaq
  • Russell 2000
  • SIX Swiss Exchange
  • Shanghai Stock Exchange
  • Shenzhen Stock Exchange
  • Taiwan Stock Exchange
  • Toronto Stock Exchange

#2 - OANDA US

Why We Chose OANDA US

OANDA is a popular brand offering exceptional execution, low deposit requirements and advanced charting and trading platform features. The top-rated brand has over 25 years of experience and is regulated by trusted agencies, including the NFA/CFTC. Around the clock support is available for short-term traders, alongside flexible contract sizes and automated trade executions.

"OANDA remains an excellent broker for US day traders seeking a user-friendly platform with premium analysis tools and a straightforward joining process. OANDA is also heavily regulated with a very high trust score."

- DayTrading Review Team
  • Instruments: Forex, Crypto
  • Regulator: NFA, CFTC
  • Platforms: OANDA Trade, MT4, TradingView, AutoChartist
  • Minimum Deposit: $0
  • Minimum Trade: 0.01 Lots
  • Leverage: 1:50

Stock Exchanges

OANDA US offers trading on 0 stock exchanges:

#3 - Deriv.com

Why We Chose Deriv.com

Deriv.com is a low cost, multi-asset broker with over 2.5 million global clients. With just a $5 minimum deposit, the firm offers CFDs, multipliers and more recently accumulators, alongside proprietary synthetic products which can't be found elsewhere. Deriv provides both its own in-house charting software and the hugely popular MetaTrader 5.

"Deriv.com will suit day traders looking to make fast-paced trades using CFDs and multipliers with high leverage up to 1:1000. The broker is also the industry leader in synthetic indices, which simulate real market movements and are available around the clock. "

- DayTrading Review Team
  • Instruments: CFDs, Multipliers, Forex, Stocks, Indices, Commodities
  • Regulator: MFSA, LFSA, VFSC, BFSC
  • Platforms: Deriv Trader, MT5
  • Minimum Deposit: $5
  • Minimum Trade: 0.01 Lots
  • Leverage: 1:1000

Stock Exchanges

Deriv.com offers trading on 5 stock exchanges:

  • Australian Securities Exchange (ASX)
  • Dow Jones
  • Japan Exchange Group
  • Nasdaq
  • New York Stock Exchange

#4 - Exness

Why We Chose Exness

Exness is a Cyprus-based forex and CFD brokerage established in 2008. With over 260,000 clients, several awards and reputable licensing, the broker has maintained its position as a highly respected global brand. Active day traders can access the popular MT4 and MT5 platforms, raw spreads and multiple account types.

"Exness remains an accessible broker for all experience levels, though experienced day traders will particularly appreciate the ultra-low commission rates, fast withdrawals and high-quality charting software."

- DayTrading Review Team
  • Instruments: CFDs, Forex, Stocks, Indices, Commodities, Crypto
  • Regulator: FSA, CySEC, FCA, FSCA, FSC, CBCS
  • Platforms: Exness Trade App, MT4, MT5, TradingCentral
  • Minimum Deposit: $10
  • Minimum Trade: 0.01 Lots
  • Leverage: 1:2000

Stock Exchanges

Exness offers trading on 9 stock exchanges:

  • CAC 40 Index France
  • DAX GER 40 Index
  • Euronext
  • FTSE UK Index
  • Hong Kong Stock Exchange
  • Japan Exchange Group
  • London Stock Exchange
  • Nasdaq
  • New York Stock Exchange

#5 - Pepperstone

Why We Chose Pepperstone

Established in Australia in 2010, Pepperstone is a top-rated forex and CFD broker with over 400,000 clients worldwide. It offers access to 1,300+ instruments on leading platforms MT4, MT5, cTrader and TradingView, maintaining low, transparent fees. Pepperstone is also regulated by trusted authorities like the FCA, ASIC, and CySEC, ensuring a secure environment for day traders at all levels.

"Pepperstone stands out as a top choice for day trading, offering razor-sharp spreads, ultra-fast execution, and advanced charting platforms for experienced traders. New traders are also welcomed with no minimum deposit, extensive educational resources, and exceptional 24/7 support."

- DayTrading Review Team
  • Instruments: CFDs, Forex, Currency Indices, Stocks, Indices, Commodities, ETFs, Crypto, Spread Betting
  • Regulator: FCA, ASIC, CySEC, DFSA, CMA, BaFin, SCB
  • Platforms: MT4, MT5, cTrader, TradingView, AutoChartist, DupliTrade
  • Minimum Deposit: $0
  • Minimum Trade: 0.01 Lots
  • Leverage: 1:30 (Retail), 1:500 (Pro)

Stock Exchanges

Pepperstone offers trading on 22 stock exchanges:

  • Australian Securities Exchange (ASX)
  • CAC 40 Index France
  • DAX GER 40 Index
  • Deutsche Boerse
  • Dow Jones
  • Euronext
  • FTSE UK Index
  • Hang Seng
  • Hong Kong Stock Exchange
  • IBEX 35
  • Japan Exchange Group
  • Korean Stock Exchange
  • London Stock Exchange
  • Nasdaq
  • New York Stock Exchange
  • Russell 2000
  • S&P 500
  • SIX Swiss Exchange
  • Shanghai Stock Exchange
  • Shenzhen Stock Exchange
  • Taiwan Stock Exchange
  • Toronto Stock Exchange

How To Choose Dubai Financial Market Brokers

The key factors to consider when comparing brokers that support trading on the Dubai Financial Market include:

Regulation

Dubai Financial Market brokers must hold relevant licensing to offer DFM securities to retail investors. All Dubai Financial Market brokers registered within the United Arab Emirates must comply with the guidance of the Securities Commodities Authority (SCA) and the Central Bank of UAE.

You should research whether your chosen brokerage is licensed to operate with a top-tier authority and verify this by visiting the website of the financial watchdog.

Tools

Look out for Dubai Financial Market brokers that provide access to educational content, intuitive trading platforms, mobile apps and additional features such as copy trading.

Integrated economic calendars and live news streams are also ideal for staying in the loop with UAE company publications and local economy health, which may influence your decisions when it comes to investing in the Dubai Financial Market index.

Customer Support

The best Dubai Financial Market brokers will provide reliable and responsive customer support options. This may include via email, live chat or toll-free telephone number available within the market’s operating hours.

Language flexibility should be a key consideration, especially if you are not of Arabic nationality. Tailored contact options should be available regardless of your country of residency.

Payment Methods

Look out for Dubai Financial Market brokers that offer local deposit and withdrawal solutions as well as internationally recognized payment methods. Global credit cards may be the most suitable so you can fund a trading account and begin investing right away.

Remember, the majority of Dubai Financial Market brokers may only offer account denominations in the UAE Dirham, so take currency exchange fees into consideration if this is not your local money.

Commission-free payment solutions should be top of your list, with third-party charges covered by the broker particularly advantageous. Fast withdrawal times are also important to look out for. Don’t be kept waiting to withdraw your hard-earned profits from DFM brokers.

Dubai Financial Market Background

The Government of Dubai owns 79.63% of the Dubai Financial Market through Borse Dubai Limited. The DFM conducts business in full compliance with the Islamic Sharia laws and is regulated by the Securities and Commodities Authority. In terms of capitalization, which is the total value of all of the shares of all of the securities traded on the Dubai Financial Market, the exchange comes in at around $119 billion USD.

Importantly, the DFM is a major stock market in the region, attracting local and global investors. Traders can speculate on leading real-estate companies, financial services providers, plus telecommunications via registered Dubai Financial Markets brokers.

A Brief History

The Dubai Financial Market Company (DFM PJSC) was founded on the 26th of March 2000. It was created as a public institution with an independent legal entity via the Government of Dubai and operated this way for six years.

Up until November 2006, the Dubai Financial Market was fully owned by the Government of Dubai, but at this point, it turned into a public shareholding company through an IPO and was divided into 8 billion shares. This led to 20% of shares (equating to 1.6 billion shares) going to the public and 80% being subscribed by Borse Dubai which the Dubai government owns. The public offering received unprecedented demand with subscriptions coming to AED 201 billion, meaning that DFM’s IPO was oversubscribed by 118 times.

In 2007, the Dubai Financial Market became the first regional exchange to be publicly listed, and in 2010, the Dubai Financial Market consolidated operations with Nasdaq Dubai. This means that investors can now access listed securities via online brokers for both DFM and Nasdaq with just one Investor Number.

In 2013, the United Arab Emirates was upgraded to Emerging Market Status by MSCI and some stocks were included in the MSCI Emerging Markets Index in May 2014.

In 2015, the Dubai Financial Market redesigned and launched an application called DFM Market Watch, allowing traders to check investments and markets more seamlessly.

Dubai financial markets trading brokers
Market Watch

Today, the number of listings comes to 66 companies, around three-quarters of which are in the financial (60.7%) and real estate (17.1%) sectors, with other firms in telecommunications, transportation, and industrials, among others. Most of these companies are operating within the UAE, but the market is receiving more interest from outside investors and foreign ownership is on the rise since 2019. The majority of foreign companies listed on the Dubai Financial Market are from the MENA region, including countries such as Bahrain, Sudan, Kuwait and Oman. The top DFM brokers offer access to all companies listed.

There has not been an IPO listed on the DFM since the year 2017, but the DFM is continuously trying to bring in local companies and encouraging them to list there rather than abroad. Efforts include letting companies in Dubai’s free zones list and letting family companies list.

How Does The Dubai Financial Market Work?

The Dubai Financial Market was established with the goal of offering securities trading services. With Dubai being a financial hub, the DFM has seen much success since it was established. The stock exchange is currently open to investors of any nationality based in any country via online DFM brokers. In addition, any individual or institution can apply for an Investor Number (NIN) with the Dubai CSD.

The DFM takes several measures to prevent unfair treatment of investors by regulating trading activity on securities. Therefore, the prices of the securities on DFM are determined by supply and demand, rather than by an individual entity. Stakeholders are given all relevant statistics and facts about securities in the form of reports. This is to ensure that investors have all of the information that is necessary to make informed decisions.

Listing Requirements

In order for the shares of a company to be traded on the DFM, there are specific listing requirements and rules that must be met. Firms must provide a description of their operations and company history. Importantly, the performance of the company must be strong if they are to attract investors looking to buy shares through brokers that support trading on the Dubai Financial Market. If the performance of the company is deemed to be good enough, then a certain number of shares will be made public.

Listed companies on the Dubai Financial Market will also be required to maintain either their market value or share turnover higher than a level determined by DFM. The company is at risk of being delisted if this requirement is not met.

The Dubai Financial Market General Index

The DFM General Index is a tool that traders can use to see how the market is performing. This means that investors do not have to look through all 66 stock charts for every company listed. This index tracks the general market performance for the entirety of the DFM. Several top DFM brokers offer insights and access to the index.

In terms of performance in recent years, the DFM General Index had its worst year in more than a decade in 2018 with a loss of nearly 25%. This rose again the following year by around 10%. The current outlook remains uncertain in the wake of Covid-19 and the Russia-Ukraine war.

Growth

Despite the above, the DFM has one of the most steady growth rates in the world. During the 2008 financial crisis, most companies were experiencing decreases in performance and growth, and for many companies, this has remained the same ever since. And unsurprisingly, when companies are performing poorly, this tends to have a negative effect on the financial market of the country they are listed in.

However, this hasn’t applied to the Dubai Financial Market, which has seen the number of traded shares routinely increase since it was conceived in 2000. Since its launch, the exchange has moved from having only 11 companies listed to the 66 that it has now.

How To Invest In The Dubai Financial Market

Investing in the DFM is straightforward. The stock exchange makes specific efforts to ensure the process is efficient for all investors, including through the development of a Dubai Financial Market app, which allows traders to monitor their investments. To get started, individuals need to open a trading account with registered Dubai Financial Market brokers. They also need to obtain a Dubai Financial Market Investor Number.

As is the case with any kind of stock trading, it is wise to look into the company and sector that you are investing in and be aware of the level of risk that you are willing to take prior to taking a position. See our stock trading guide for strategy tips.

Final Word On DFM Brokers

Since its conception, the Dubai Financial Market has been one of the best-performing exchanges in the United Arab Emirates. It has seen fairly steady growth since it was established and was able to maintain relative success even during the global financial crisis of 2008. See our list of top brokers with access to the Dubai Financial Market to start investing today.

FAQs

What Timezone Do Dubai Financial Market Brokers Operate?

The Dubai Financial Market uses the Asia/Dubai timezone, also known as Gulf Standard Time. Currently, this timezone is GMT+04:00 and uses the abbreviation +04. This timezone does not follow Daylight Saving Time.

What Currency Is Used When Trading With Brokers Offering The Dubai Financial Market Index?

The Dubai Financial Market trades in Emirati Dirhams, using the currency code AED. The symbol for this currency is د.إ. You may need to exchange your local currency to AED when trading with Dubai Financial Market brokers.

What Are The Dubai Financial Market Trading Hours At Online Brokers?

The Dubai Financial Market is open Monday – Friday from 10:00 until 14:45 Gulf Standard Time (GMT+04:00). The best DFM brokers offer uninterrupted market access during this period.

Who Owns The Dubai Financial Market?

Until 2006, the DFM was fully owned by the Government of Dubai, but after this, it was turned into a public joint-stock company through an IPO. From this point onwards, 20% of the shares were sold to the public and 80% were subscribed by Borse Dubai, which is owned by the Government of Dubai.

Where Is The DFM located?

As the name suggests, the Dubai Financial Market location is Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Global investors can still speculate on listed stocks if they meet eligibility requirements. Note, leading DFM brokers may be based elsewhere in other major investing hubs.

Are DFM Brokers Regulated?

The best DFM brokers and platforms are regulated by the Central Bank of UAE or trusted international agencies, such as the UK Financial Conduct Authority. The DFM is also regulated by the Securities and Commodities Authority (SCA). This helps ensure that investors receive a degree of security and have channels to raise issues.