‘Top 3’ Pepperstone Strengths
‘Top 3’ Pepperstone Weaknesses
Pepperstone Offers The Best Forex Trading Platforms
The two most popular forex trading platforms globally are offered by Pepperstone:
1) MetaTrader Platforms
- MetaTrader 4 is the world’s most popular forex platform
- MetaTrader 5 is also available for a range of market
- Easy to use interface and order management tools
- Real-time charts, live quotes and in-depth news
- Direct access to inter-bank market depth to implement algorithmic based fx trading systems.
- An interface that can be personalised with pre-set & detachable charts.
- Extensive back testing facilities (seen in our cTrader review)
Generally, its hard to separate the two forex trading platforms in Pepperstone reviews. Those looking to use forex automation (EAs) may prefer MetaTrader 4 based on the resources, online community and availability. MetaTrader 5 (MT5) also has automation in different code. cTrader on the other hand provide enhanced modification options within the interface combined with advanced order placing options. There is also webtrader which doesn’t need to be downloaded. Webtrader is normally used as a back-up to the above forex trading platforms primarily for those who are using a computer that they don’t own.
|Platform||Accessibility||Adjustable Session Times||Depth Of Market Functionality||Historical Data Access||Enhanced EA Trading||Detachable Charts|
Edge Environment enhances MetaTrader + cTrader
As a true ecn broker the Pepperstone Razor account avoids forex trading dealer intervention. Combining fast global trading servers with the leading optic fibre network latency can be low as 0.05 of a second (50ms). Pepperstone trading platform speed is the fastest in reviews.
1) Fast Global Trading Servers
Pepperstone has partnered with Equinix, one of NASDAQ’s leading listed firms. There servers are setup in Wall Street and London to access nearby strategic liquidity pools with:
- 60+ Exchanges
- 400+ buy/sell firms
- 150+ Financial Service Providers
2) Optical Fibre From Australia To Wall Street
Pepperstone utilises an optical fibre network from Sydney to their New York equinox servers.
This ensures that Australian forex traders don’t need to worry their remoteness. The speed reduced latency by up to 10x!
3) Smart Trader Tools (MetaTrader Only)
Traders that choose MT4 or MT5 have the benefit of smart trader tools which is a package of 16 trading tools and 15 custom indicators. The 10 most popular features include:
- Correlation Matrix that shows relationships between instruments
- Autochartist that highlights statistically significant market movements
- Alarm Manager alerts traders of key price changes or market events
- Sentiment Trader that shows the sentiment of past and live market data
- Connect Feature that delivers news, analysis and an economic calendar
- Excel RTD that pushes market data in real-time to excel
- Trade Simulator that for MT4 only allows testing of strategies
- Stealth Orders that allows pending orders to be hidden form the market
- Session Map that highlights which currency markets are open
- Mini Terminal allows you to hide MetaTrader but still see a market
Platforms Are Enhanced With High Leverage Offering
Pepperstone offer a leverage level of up to 500:1. Only a handful of AFSL forex brokers offer this level of leverage and means you can trade up to 500 times your deposit amplifying the exposure to currency markets.
Pepperstone Trading Platform Conclusion
Pepperstone offers the two most popular forex trading platforms, a fast Equinix trading server environment and high leverage of 500:1.
The combination of these forex platform features lead to the Pepperstone review winning this category.
Pepperstone Has Market Leading Spreads And Fees
There are two account types of offered by Pepperstone:
- Standard account – High spreads and no commissions (designed for beginner traders)
- Razor account – Low Spread + AU$3.50 commission (designed for advanced traders)
Below compares the Razor Pepperstone spreads to other ECN trading account types. These Australian forex brokers spreads were taken from each individual spread reports. The EUR USD spread is considered the benchmark with EUR/USD spreads starting from 0 pips and the average spread stated as 0.16* on the 19th of March 2019. The AUD/USD also has spreads starting from 0 pips and the average spreads at 0.27.
In 2019 a relaunched active trader program was launched to reward traders who frequently make trades. This is now a rebate per fx lot which starts at AUD $1 when FX volume exceeds 200 lots per month. This equates to 15% off the based commission per lot of forex volume traded and is paid daily.
The highest level will mean that the commission rate is up to 43% on trading commissions. This would lead to the lowest commission of any retail foreign exchange broker worldwide making this Pepperstone review recommend them for high volume traders.
Spreads Are Even Lower Due To Price Improvement Technology
Another way that Pepperstone reduces brokerage fees is through their Price Improvement Technology. This works in volatile markets when large price movements occur with price improvement technology working in three steps. Firstly, the trader makes a forex or CFD trade through the MT4 or cTrader platform. Secondly, the trade is executed and a more favourable price movement with is detected. Finally, the price improvement technology aims to fill the price at the improved level.
No Fees On Deposits And Withdraws
Pepperstone don’t charge fees for deposits but international institutions may charge their own fees and need to be paid by the client. All payments must be first-party with bank accounts in different names to the trading accounts not been accepted.
- Visa – Instant funding through Verified By Visa is available with zero fees.
- MasterCard – MasterCard SecureCode allows fast funds which like Visa don’t have fees applied.
- Paypal – No charges are applied from Paypal funding of an account
- POLi & BPay – Bank transfers can be made at any time from eligible bank accounts through POLi & BPay.
- China Union Pay – There are no fees or charges from Union Pay which offers funding at any time.
- Wire Transfer (Domestic & International) – Wire transfers are available but they can take time and fees may be charged.
- Skrill (Moneybookers), Qiwi & Neteller – Fast deposit method that is available 24 hours, 7 days a week with no charges.
- Fastapay – Instant deposit method with no fees.
A withdrawal received prior to 7:00am AEST is processed the same day. After this time the deposit will be processed the next day. The bank account linked to the Pepperstone account will receive the funds (this can’t be a third-party as is the case for deposits). If a credit card was used to fund an account it can also be used for withdrawals if the amount matches or is less then the deposited amount. Otherwise an alternative withdrawal method is needed for the account.
Bank wire transfers take between three to five working days while International Telegraphic Transfers have a fee of approximately $20 Australian dollars.
The Pepperstone Razor account has the lowest trading costs with no dealing desk, institutional market leading spreads, price improvement technology and a low commission.
With commissions been even lower for high volume trader and no fees on both deposits and withdrawals they won this category in our 2019 Pepperstone review.
Pepperstone Has Award-Winning Customer Service
Pepperstone has gained a 3% increase in market share within the retail forex trading market. This has been in-part credited to their customer support. In fact, Pepperstone support levels were so high they won the Investment Trends overall client satisfaction award.
Key elements that have led to Pepperstone’s customer support winning these awards includes there:
1) Personalised Customer Service
Pepperstone offers a customer service team that hold years of experience within the forex trading sector. As real traders, they can help educate and answer any forex trading enquiries beginner, intermediate or expert traders may have. In many cases, a dedicated account manager may also be assigned to a trader to gain a stronger understanding of the trader’s needs.
2) 24-Hour Support
Pepperstone support is always available when the forex markets are open thanks to their five offices which are located in Melbourne, Shanghai, Dallas, Bangkok and London. This also provides local options for those forex traders located outside of Australia.
3) Customer Support Channels
A key strength found in the review of Pepperstone was the ability to use live chat to get high level support. Live chat is available 24 hours a day as is their phone customer support (with different national numbers for each office location). E-mail support is also available.
Pepperstone Broker Reviews Match Their Awards
Forex brokers review sites generally have provided positive Pepperstone reviews since their launch in 2010. The score was 8.7 from 439 reviews as of the 04/06/2019 highlighting the broker offering is strong when it comes to customer satisfaction.
The key forex broker reviews issues raised were in relation to ‘exotic pairings’ (pairing outside of the major currencies). There also were complaints around withdrawing money from accounts. Positive Pepperstone broker reviews related to how fast their VPS is (<5ms), fast deposits, easy to get an account offering a stable platform.
Investment trends which also does an annual survey late each year also found the Australian forex broker was the best across several areas. These include customer service, value for money, platform reliability and execution speeds.
Pepperstone Customer Service Conclusion
Our Pepperstone review found their account service to be exceptional with:
- An award-winning customer service team
- Several channels for support including live chat
- Positive Customer Reviews
Overall, Pepperstone reviews of customer service were positive, only superseded by OANDA who excel in this one area.
Pepperstone Doesn’t Offer Stockbroking Services
The largest retail foreign exchange brokers sell themselves as an ‘all-in-one trading solution’. This includes IG and CMC Markets who offer a range of markets including stockbroking. Pepperstone is only a specialist trading provider offering:
1) FX Trading
There are 59 currency pair available including the most popular currency including the United States Dollar. Other currencies include the Euro, Japanese Yen, Great Britain Pound (GBP) and the Australian Dollar. Over $1.5 trillion a day worldwide* is traded. The leverage on fx trading is 500:1 with low spreads and
2) CFD Trading
CFD trading (Contract for Difference) also known as derivative trading allows trader to speculate on the movements of financial markets. Pepperstone offer several asset classes when CFD trading including 14 indices from the Australian 200 Index, EU Stocks 50 Index and US Tech 100 Index. CFDs are complex instruments recommended for advanced traders.
3) Commodity, Energy & Precious Metal Trading
Pepperstone offer 500:1 leverage on precious metals such as Gold, Silver, Platinum and Palladium. The same leverage levels is offered across both oil and gas markets. Soft commodity markets have a 50:1 leverage and include coffee, sugar, cocoa cotton and even orange juice.
4) Cryptocurrency Trading
There are four cryptocurrency options available for trading with leverage through Pepperstone.
Pepperstone offers Bitcoin trading which remains the most popular cryptocurrency in 2019. In 2019 over a USD $50 billion market capitalisation exists. It’s no surprise that bitcoin trading remains the preferred option from traders.
Learn more about Bitcoin on this Australia site.
Another popular cryptocurrency option is Ethereum which is considered one of the most exciting bitcoin technologies. Smart contracts allow Ethereum to have multiple applications which allows it to service a plethora of industries.
View the official Ethereum Project site.
Dash also know as ‘Digital Cash’ focuses on a faster cryptocurrency option allowing for anonymity. Digital cash is used as an efficiency payment system across the globe and has experienced high volatility and liquidity compared to Bitcoin.
Learn more about Digital Cash at the Dash website.
Litecoin is a relatively late arrival and focused on using a simple algorithm to accelerate transaction times. The simpler algorithm since 2011 is what has led to Litecoin’s popularity and make it a real alternative to the mainstream cryptocurrency options.
View more about this on the P2P site.
|Bitcoin||AUS200 (Australian)||XAUEUR (Gold)|
|Ethereum||CN50 (China)||XAGUSD (Silver)|
|Litecoin||EUSTX50 (European)||XAGEUR (Silver)|
|Dash||FRA40 (French)||XPTUSD (Platinum)|
|GER30 (German)||XPDUSD (Palladium)|
|IT40 (Italian)||XTIUSD (US Oil)|
|JPN225 (Japanese)||XBRUSD (Brent Oil)|
|SPA35 (Spanish)||XNGUSD (Natural Gas)|
|UK100 (United Kingdom)||Sugar|
|US30 (USA)||Orange Juice|
|HK50 (Hong Kong)||Cotton|
|US2000 (USA)||XAUUSD (Gold)|
Pepperstone Only Offers Limited Joining Bonuses
Pepperstone doesn’t offer a monetary joining bonus unlike many other Australian forex brokers who match initial deposits. Rather, their joining bonus is up to 10,000 Qantas Points.
Eligible accounts earn 10 Qantas frequent flyer points per initial deposit dollar. A maximum of $1,000 will result in the maximum amount of 10,000 frequent flyer points. The process to get this joining bonus are:
- Open a live trading account (not a Pepperstone demo account)
- Link a frequent flyer membership in the members area
- Make your initial deposit (up to $1,000)
Additional frequent flyer points can be rewarded when trading lots with 1 lot resulting in 10 points. This is only for currency trading on the major currency pairings including AUD/USD, EUR/USA, GPB/USD and USD/JPY. View our full Qantas points review here.
Other top-tier CFD brokers offer cash joining bonuses and brokerage reductions which could be viewed as superior to Pepperstone offer.
Pepperstone Has Limited Risk Management Features
There are risks involved when trading CFDs as they are a complex instrument and leverage makes it so there is a high risk of losing money rapidly. Understanding these risks is critical and learning the tools that can help manage these risks. Pepperstone has some such tools but not of of them. Below details the CFD risk management features available.
Currency Trading Orders Types
Pepperstone offers three order types of currency trading orders. This includes a limit order and a stop loss order exits a trader after a price is reached. This can be set by price or the maximum a trader is looking to gain/lose in a trade. The final currency trading order is a trailing stop which moves with the market as price fluctuates. The trailing stop activates only when a designated level is reached.
Pepperstone doesn’t offer guaranteed stop loss orders. This is similar are the same as a ‘stop-loss’ order but the maximum loss is guaranteed at the designate level. A stop-loss order on the other hand can lead to losses exceeding the designated level is high volatile markets leading to slippage. While guaranteed stop loss orders have increased fees, they can be an effective risk management tool for those with a low risk appetite or new to currency trading.
Pepperstone also doesn’t offer negative balance protection. While they have tools that are designed to prevent a negative balance exiting a CFD trader before their losses exceed their deposit, this is not guaranteed. If risk is a high priority item, then it may be worth considering a CFD broker offering negative balance protection like EasyMarkets.
Regulation Of Pepperstone
Pepperstone Group Limited is authorised and regulated by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission to trade in Forex and CFDs in Australia. They are also regulated in the UK through the FCA Financial Conduct Authority. Both ASIC and the FCA are two of the most sort after regulators worldwide.
Final Thoughts On Pepperstone
This Pepperstone review recommends their Razor account for:
- Intermediate traders looking for low fees and spreads, mainstream forex trading platforms (cTrader and MT4) and award-winning customer service.
- Expert traders looking for advanced forex trading features (including automated trading), fast execution speeds, the higher leverage of 500:1 and advanced support
The combination of fast execution fees, low trading costs and enhanced features which is why Pepperstone is the fastest growing in Australia.
Is Pepperstone An ECN Broker?
Pepperstone connects forex traders directly with over 20 liquidity providers through Electronic Communications Networks (ECN). This is applicable for the Pepperstone Razor account. The account offers straight through processing with 22 liquidity providers. There is no dealing desk.
What Is cTrader?
cTrader is custom designed forex trading platform made by cTrader Limited. It’s designed for advanced forex traders looking for custom designed features and is London-based.
What is MetaTrader?
MetaTrader is globally the most popular forex trading platform based in New York. Created my MetaQuotes it has an easy to use interface and advanced automation features through expert advisors.
More Details About Pepperstone
Unlike most other foreign exchange brokers, Pepperstone is Australia based (in Collins Street, Melbourne) by a management-team with currency trading experience. In 2016 at the Pepperstone Melbourne office Champ was announced as a strategic investor of the business. The Pepperstone firm was founded in 2010 within Melbourne with the firm always having Australian regulation holding the Australian Financial Services Licence 414530.
As an ASIC regulated forex broker, Pepperstone needs to meet capital requirements. Other requirements include staff training and complying with risk management processes, audits and accounting. If you hear of any Pepperstone scam this may be a broker pretending to be fx broker. Having an AFSL also means that Pepperstone financial accounts (client accounts) must be kept with Australian financial institutions which in this case is the National Australia Bank.
Traders can review currency training on forex on the Pepperstone YouTube channel, as well as the online Pepperstone resource centre. From time-to-time the Melbourne Pepperstone office also has on-site training fore selected traders.
National Australia Bank
As an ASIC regulated Australia forex broker, Pepperstone is required to hold client funds in segregated bank accounts. Our review of Pepperstone found this was the National Australia Bank (NAB) which is one of the ‘big 4’. NAB is covered by the Australian government bank guarantee making it an optimal segregated bank account for traders.
The minimum deposit size is $200 for either the Razor ecn broker account or the STP standard Pepperstone account. The minimum deposit can increase for those who choose the active trader program. Deposit options include wire transfer, credit card, debit card, Skrill, PayPal and more as explained earlier on this review of Pepperstone. A withdrawal can be made through the same channel as deposits and are processed within a business day. This can be higher in some cases.
Leverage associated with CFDs are makes CFD trading (forex trading) high risk activity. 79% of retail investor accounts with Pepperstone lose money so it’s critical to understand CFDs prior to trading. Make sure you only trade amounts you can afford to lose due to the threat of losing your money. Pepperstone also offer an Islamic account. This is swap-free account avoiding interest which can prevent some individuals from CFD trading.
Foreign Exchange Demo Account
Pepperstone offers a foreign exchange (forex) demo account on the cTrader and MetaTrader platform. Our demo article explains more about the advantages of demo accounts, especially those that are new to foreign exchange trading. One a trader opens a live account they still have the option of using a demo for trading testing on the MT4 platform. A feature many traders use for expert advisors (EAs).
Technical Analysis Offered By Pepperstone
As technical analysis focuses of price trends over time there is a central focus on charting. Pepperstone offers three types of charts including a line chart that connects one closing price to another. This helps identify the direction of the market over a given time. The second type is bar charts which provides more details of market trends through line formats. This includes the highs and lows of specific periods. The final is candlestick charts which also shows the highs and lows over a period. This candlestick format helps identify reversals and pivot points on currency markets.
Fundamental Analysis Offered By Pepperstone
Focusing on financial, political and economic factors, fundamental analysis focuses on the events and forces that influence foreign exchange markets. These forces and events help impact currency markets which is why news (provided through Reuters) and daily market updates by Pepperstone are so critical. This information focuses on political policies, surplus and deficit information, inflation and trade trends.
The The MetaTrader 4 or MetaTrader 5 App for Android® and iPhone® provide the core functionality of the forex trading platform combined with the functionality of a mobile app. cTrader doesn’t have a mobile app but rather a mobile trading platform for those looking to trade on-the-go.
Countries Excluded From Trading With Pepperstone
Pepperstone is a worldwide forex broker but due to regulatory and other local laws, there are some country where residents can’t open an account, including:
- New Zealand
Both the STP standard and Razor account offer 1o base currencies including the Australian dollar, US dollar, Japanese Yen, The Euro, Hong Kong Dollar and the Pound
The Pepperstone Account Opening Process
Opening an account is straightforward after you click on the ‘visit website’ button below. You should set aside 6 minutes to complete the application assuming you
have the right documentation in-front of you.
Complete the online form that includes stating what the application type is (Individual, Company, Trust etc), name, country, phone number and provide your e-mail address.
The following section requires more detailed personal information and the forex broker can set the limit of the leverage they want (up to 500:1). As part of this process a short survey is given to gauge the expertise of the trader.
At this stage the forex trader needs to verify their identity your ID (most individuals use their password) and proof of address (often a utility bill). Notarised passport helps avoid the requirements of the proof of address requirements.
Download the forex trading platform and start trading after the paperwork is processed (between a day to a week).
The live-chat, e-mail and call centre support can be of great assistance if you encounter problems especially with verification of the process.
About Compare Forex Brokers
The authors of compare forex brokers have made broker comparison tables to make finding the right Australian forex broker simple. There are also comparison tables comparing Pepperstone to IC markets and to AxiTrader. There are several forex broker comparison tables each feature on separate areas including leverage and fx platforms offered. Feel free to view our forex broker comparison options each with separate brokers reviews created by real Australians.
This online Pepperstone review was based on information gained from the Razor fx trading accounts and the Australian forex brokers website. As such a standard review of Pepperstone should factor in the spreads of this alternative account. If you find any element of this online review of Pepperstone is inaccurate please inform us using the ‘contact us’.