Trading Tournaments

Trading tournaments are an increasingly popular way for traders to test themselves and win prizes. In these tournaments, entrants compete using demo accounts to see who can make the most profit, usually for free funds deposited into a live trading account. Many brokers promote their platforms with elaborate and expensive tournaments: some of the biggest trading tournament prizes are worth over one million USD. In this article, we will explore how trading tournaments work, their advantages and some of the key factors to look out for.

Top Brokers With Trading Tournaments

We have tested hundreds of brokers and these 6 offer the best trading tournaments:

#1 - Pocket Option

Why We Chose Pocket Option

Established in 2017, Pocket Option is a binary options broker offering high/low contracts on forex, stocks, indices, commodities and cryptocurrencies. With over 100,000 active users and a global reach, the platform continues to prove popular with budding traders.

"Pocket Option excels for its easy-to-use web platform which provides a best-in-class user experience for short-term binary traders. The $50 minimum deposit is also accessible for beginners while opening an account is really easy. Looking at the negatives, Pocket Option still trails alternatives in its market offering and regulatory credentials."

- DayTrading Review Team
  • Instruments: Binary Options, Currencies, Commodities, Stocks, Indices, Cryptos
  • Regulator: MISA
  • Platforms: Web, MT4, MT5
  • Min. Deposit: $50
  • Min. Trade: $1

Pros

  • The MetaTrader platforms offer integrated analysis with helpful technical summaries for short-term traders
  • The web platform shines for its straightforward design and usability that will appeal to beginners looking to speculate on popular financial markets in a few clicks
  • Extremely fast and smooth sign-up process that takes less than 2 minutes

Cons

  • Pocket Option offers a slimmed down iteration of the MT4 and MT5 that doesn't provide the full charting package for advanced traders
  • The maximum binary contract length of 4 hours is restrictive for longer-term trading strategies. Alternatives like Videforex offer binaries up to 1 month
  • Despite offering competitive payouts up to 92%, binary brokers like IQCent offer higher returns up to 98% based on tests

#2 - IQCent

Why We Chose IQCent

IQCent is an offshore binary options and CFD broker based in the Marshall Islands. The brand continues to offer a range of unique account types with bonuses and perks, including payout boosts, TradeBacks and free rollovers. With 100+ assets, around-the-clock trading and 98% payouts, the firm is popular with aspiring short-term traders.

"IQCent will appeal to day traders looking for a straightforward binary options and CFD trading platform with low fees, a range of accounts, and copy trading. Getting started takes less than 1 minute and a $250 deposit. "

- DayTrading Review Team
  • Instruments: Binary Options, CFDs, Forex, Indices, Commodities, Crypto
  • Regulator: IFMRRC
  • Platforms: Online Platform, TradingView
  • Min. Deposit: $250
  • Min. Trade: $0.01
  • Leverage: 1:500

Pros

  • The broker's 24/7 customer support is fast and reliable, responding within 1 minute during tests
  • There's an accessible $0.01 minimum stake for new day traders with a small budget
  • Keen traders can take part in trading contests with cash prizes

Cons

  • IQCent charges a punitive $10 monthly inactivity fee if you fail to place at least 1 trade per month
  • There's no automated trading support for algo traders
  • The broker is not overseen by a respected regulator, though this is common among binary options firms

#3 - Videforex

Why We Chose Videforex

Launched in 2017, Videforex offers access to stock, index, crypto, forex and commodities markets via binary options and CFDs. The proprietary platform, mobile app and integrated copy trading are user-friendly and will suit new and casual traders, and the market analysis tools and trading contests provide good ways to improve your trading skills.

"Newer traders will find a lot to enjoy about trading binary options on Videforex's easy-to-use proprietary platform, as well as the broker's copy trading solution. Payouts also remain higher than most alternatives climbing to 98%."

- DayTrading Review Team
  • Instruments: Binary Options, CFDs, Forex, Indices, Commodities, Crypto
  • Platforms: TradingView
  • Min. Deposit: $250
  • Min. Trade: $0.01
  • Leverage: 1:500

Pros

  • Global clients can make free and fast transfers via a wide range of payment types, from credit cards to cryptocurrencies
  • The support times are fast and reliable based on tests - few brokers offer 24/7 multi-lingual video support
  • You can easily mirror the trades of experienced investors with low fees

Cons

  • US clients aren’t accepted due to legal restrictions
  • The broker isn’t overseen by a trusted regulatory agency
  • No MetaTrader 4 integration

#4 - World Forex

Why We Chose World Forex

World Forex is an offshore broker registered in St Vincent and the Grenadines, offering commission-free trading with a $1 minimum deposit and 1:1000 leverage. Digital contracts are also available, offering beginners a straightforward way to speculate on popular financial markets.

"World Forex provides both highly leveraged CFDs and digital contracts, making this a good broker for clients who want flexible and rewarding ways to trade. The copy trading service will also appeal to newer traders."

- DayTrading Review Team
  • Instruments: Forex, CFD Stocks, Metals, Energies, Cryptos, Digital Contracts
  • Regulator: SVGFSA
  • Platforms: MT4, MT5
  • Min. Deposit: $1
  • Min. Trade: 0.01 Lots
  • Leverage: 1:1000

Pros

  • MT4, MT5 and a proprietary trading terminal
  • Low deposit of $1
  • A wide range of assets to trade, including via digital contracts

Cons

  • Withdrawal fees apply
  • No negative balance protection
  • Weak regulation

#5 - RaceOption

Why We Chose RaceOption

RaceOption is a binary options broker operating from the Marshall Islands. With over 1,500 clients, the broker aims to offer fast funding, low fees and a secure trading environment. Traders can access over 100 binary options and CFDs, plus copy trading and weekly prizes.

"RaceOption will appeal to traders new to binary options looking for copy trading, contests and 24/7 customer support. Experienced traders will also appreciate the account-based perks and bonuses."

- DayTrading Review Team
  • Instruments: Binary Options, CFDs
  • Platforms: TradingView
  • Min. Deposit: $250
  • Min. Trade: $0.01
  • Leverage: 1:500

Pros

  • Flexible weekend trading available plus 24/7 multilingual customer support
  • Well-optimised proprietary mobile trading app with instant execution, full trading history and responsive live charts
  • Sign-up bonuses from 20%, plus weekly trading contests and prize giveaways

Cons

  • Withdrawal thresholds apply
  • Limited educational resources
  • No free demo account

#6 - BinaryCent

Why We Chose BinaryCent

BinaryCent is an unregulated binary options broker that offers 24/7 trading on forex, cryptos and stocks with payouts up to 95%. Despite its lack of regulation, this broker takes client security seriously and stores client funds in European banks. The broker also offers CFDs with very high leverage up to 1:500.

"Traders who want a reliable binary options broker with a streamlined platform and high payouts should try out BinaryCent."

- DayTrading Review Team
  • Instruments: CFDs, Forex, Stocks, Cryptos, Options, Commodities
  • Regulator: VFSC
  • Platforms: Own
  • Min. Deposit: $250
  • Min. Trade: $0.01
  • Leverage: 1:500

Pros

  • Trade binary contracts from $0.10 allowing trading opportunities for all budgets
  • Accepts a wide range of funding methods, including cryptos and e-wallets
  • Copy trading and binary options bots are useful for beginner traders

Cons

  • Not available to traders based in the US
  • The $250 minimum deposit is higher than most binary options brokers
  • Not overseen by any reputable regulator, raising risks and reducing customer protections

How Trading Tournaments Work

A trading tournament is a competition held amongst traders to see who can make the most money through demo trading. Online platforms and brokers organise tournaments both to attract new customers and retain old ones. Typically, competitors are given an equal amount of virtual credit to invest how they see fit (for instance $10,000), with the most profitable trader after a set period being declared the winner.

Tournament lengths can range from one day up to one month. Some platforms, like FXOpen or the World Cup Trading Championships, offer a cash prize to the most profitable trader in a calendar year. It is up to the tournament organiser to decide which assets can be traded, with binary options being one of the most common. Forex and crypto trading tournaments, are quite popular.

Some trading tournament platforms operate a ‘league’ system, whereby traders compete against others with similar experience levels and abilities. These types of tournaments are well suited to novice traders and those looking to hone their abilities as they are more accessible. On the other hand, some competitions allow players to compete as part of a team, offering entrants another way to develop their trading skills.

Trading tournaments are often free to enter, though some may require a fee. Some tournaments are known as ‘real cash competitions’, where contestants trade with their own money. There are also free competitions, which involve paper trading accounts to keep a level playing field, though these generally have smaller prize pools. Both free and paid tournaments often have a ‘rebuy’ option, which allows traders to reload their account balance by depositing the original amount again.

Pros Of Trading Tournaments

Chance To Win Prizes

Trading tournament winners are rewarded with a share of the prize pool. Other highly-placed entrants usually also receive some of the winnings (for example, the 10 most successful entrants). Paid tournaments, which may only cost a few dollars to enter, can have very large prize pools. Often, these contain more than just cash as trading platforms compete for attention. For instance, early in 2021 FBS set the record for the biggest trading tournament prize with a prize pool worth $1.2 million, featuring a Mercedes-Benz, 1kg bar of gold and $300,000 in cash. The size of the potential winnings is generally linked to the initial stake and the number of entrants. Free trading tournaments may reward winners with non-withdrawable trading capital, though some have (smaller) cash prizes.free forex trading tournaments

Many sites run daily trading tournaments with smaller prize pools in addition to high-stakes competitions. For example, the popular binary options site IQ Option runs daily trading competitions with prizes as large as $1,000, as well as big competitions with prizes of up to $100,000.

As a precaution, it is well worth checking the terms and conditions of each trading tournament to see exactly how the prize money is distributed. For instance, winnings may need to be held in an account for a set amount of time before they can be withdrawn. Sometimes, the prize money takes the form of account credit, which can be re-invested but not cashed out.

Practise

Trading tournaments offer both beginners and experienced traders a chance to refine their trading skills. Participants usually have access to a large amount of virtual cash, allowing traders to invest more capital than they ordinarily would. Tournaments also allow entrants to experiment with riskier trades, which can often be a recipe for success. This high-risk style of trading can also be a good way to get a feel for the market. The relatively low entry fees of many tournaments make them a low-stakes environment for performing risky trades.

Platforms that offer a league-based structure, such as OlympTrade, are good for helping traders of all abilities to improve. When players are divided into leagues, beginner traders have a greater chance of being successful. This allows them to build confidence and learn strategies in a less competitive environment. Experienced traders, on the other hand, can stretch themselves by competing against similarly skilled opponents.

Connecting With Other Traders

Trading tournaments can be a chance to learn from other traders. Studying the strategies of winning competitors is a great way to improve your skills. Many clients also relish the opportunity to connect and discuss tactics. Team tournaments also encourage collaborative trading, which can help to develop trading acumen.

What To Look For In Platforms That Offer Trading Tournaments

Prize Value

Trading tournaments have a diverse range of winnings, from daily competitions with prize pools of around $1,000 to million-dollar one-off events. Daily competitions are usually cheaper to enter, costing only a few dollars. Large competitions, on the other hand, may require a deposit of up $100. They are also likely to feature far more competitors.

Some platforms offer in-house benefits to winning competitors. For instance, successful entrants may win trading capital that can be re-invested but not withdrawn. On some sites, like Pocket Option, traders can unlock achievements by participating in tournaments, which are used to buy trading advantages in the market.

Fees

Trading tournaments can be divided into free and paid competitions. The entry fees for paid tournaments vary, often linked to the prize pool available and the duration of the tournament. As a general rule of thumb, daily tournaments with winnings of a few thousand USD usually have low entry fees. Large, longer-running tournaments often require entry fees in the tens of dollars but will likely feature bigger prizes. On the other hand, some tournaments are free to enter, though these may require you to make a minimum deposit into an account with the platform to take part, so check the terms and conditions first.

Many trading tournaments come with a ‘rebuy’ option, allowing entrants to reset their account balance for a fee. Traders should exercise caution when using rebuys and take care not to invest more than they can afford.

Format & Assets

Trading tournaments can take many different forms. One factor to consider is the length of the tournament, which can last from a day up to a year. Longer contests, lasting for more than a month, may require entrants to invest significantly more cash. In addition, some trading platforms organise competitors into leagues comprising traders of similar abilities. Other platforms run team competitions, allowing groups of traders to work collaboratively.

Many trading tournaments provide entrants with an equal amount of virtual capital to invest. This format is more common in daily tournaments. Alternatively, some sites simply distribute prizes to the most profitable traders on their platform in a given period (usually longer than a month). These types of tournaments are usually run as a promotion and the prizes on offer can be huge.

The range of assets available to trade varies from tournament to tournament. Some of the most popular formats include forex, binary options (like the popular IQ Option) and cryptocurrency trading tournaments. Many competitions allow you to trade in the full range of assets available on the platform, which may include traditional instruments like stocks, futures, commodities and shares.

biggest trading tournaments and prizes

Regulatory Status

All prospective trading tournament participants should be cautious when signing up for trading tournaments with a new platform. To protect your money, always choose a reputable broker or tournament organiser. It is important to check where the company is registered and how long it has been operating. Firms that have been trading for less than a year or two may require more research. In addition, if a firm is registered offshore, it may be subject to lightweight regulation, meaning that you might not be covered legally if something goes wrong. Finally, it is worth reading online reviews of the company to weed out potential scams.

Final Word On Trading Tournaments

Trading tournaments can be a good opportunity for both budding and veteran traders to develop their skills, meet other investors and trial new tactics, assets and brokers. There are both free and paid competitions run regularly, though the latter will usually offer larger prize pools, sometimes exceeding £1 million. As always, you should be careful not to spend more than you can afford during trading tournaments, especially on rebuys. Nonetheless, trading tournaments can be a fun and rewarding way to trade.

FAQs

Can I Take Part In Free Trading Tournaments?

Yes, several online platforms run free trading tournaments. These sometimes have cash prizes but contestants may also win in-house benefits like free capital or trading advantages. Free trading tournaments are a low-stakes way of getting experience in the market.

What Are The Biggest Trading Tournament Prizes?

Some trading tournaments have featured prize pools worth over one million USD, including one massive tournament run recently by FBS. The prizes keep growing in value, so keep an eye out!

How Long Do Trading Tournaments Last?

Trading tournaments can last anywhere from one day up to a year.

Are There Forex Trading Tournaments?

Several platforms and brokers run regular forex trading tournaments. Other popular tournament assets include CFDs, binary options and cryptocurrencies.

Are Trading Tournaments Good For Beginners?

Trading tournaments, particularly free or low-fee competitions, can be well suited to novice traders. Tournaments can be a good place to pick up strategies, meet other traders and experiment.