Pepperstone Vs Interactive Brokers

Category: Broker Guides | Author: Trading Brokers | Date: July 24, 2023

If you are looking for a reliable and competitive online broker to trade forex and CFDs, you might have come across Interactive Brokers and Pepperstone. These two brokers are among the most popular and reputable in the industry, but how do they compare in terms of fees, platforms, products, regulations, and customer service? In this article, we will review the main features and differences of Interactive Brokers vs Pepperstone, and help you decide which one suits your trading needs and preferences better.

Overview of Pepperstone



Pepperstone is a leading online trading platform that has gained recognition for its exceptional features and services. Offering a user-friendly interface, Pepperstone provides traders with access to a wide range of financial instruments, including forex, commodities, indices, and cryptocurrencies. One of its standout features is its lightning-fast trade execution speed, ensuring that trades are executed swiftly and accurately. Additionally, Pepperstone offers competitive spreads, allowing traders to optimize their profit potential.

Traders can also benefit from advanced charting tools and technical analysis indicators, enabling them to make informed trading decisions. Another notable feature is Pepperstone’s robust customer support, with a dedicated team available 24/7 to assist users with any queries or concerns. Furthermore, Pepperstone emphasizes a secure trading environment with strong encryption and regulatory compliance. These features, combined with its comprehensive educational resources, make Pepperstone an appealing choice for traders seeking a reliable and feature-rich trading platform.

Pros of Pepperstone

  • User-friendly interface for easy navigation.
  • Lightning-fast trade execution speed.
  • Wide range of financial instruments including forex, commodities, indices, and cryptocurrencies.
  • Competitive spreads for optimized profit potential.
  • Advanced charting tools and technical analysis indicators.

Cons of Pepperstone

  • Pepperstone does not accept clients from the United States, as it does not have an office or a license there
  • Not suitable for traders seeking extensive research and analysis tools.
  • Minimum deposit requirement may be higher for some traders.
  • Pepperstone offers over 1000 instruments, but most of them are CFDs on forex, stocks, indices, commodities and cryptocurrencies.
Pepperstone Logo

Pepperstone are one of the largest brokers providing traders worldwide access to trade across all of the major global markets with cutting edge technology, modern platforms, low costs, high speed execution, convenient funding options and award-winning customer service.

Between 74-89% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.

Overview of Interactive Brokers

Interactive Brokers Logo

Interactive Brokers

Interactive Brokers is a renowned online trading platform that stands out for its comprehensive range of features and services. It offers traders access to a vast array of financial instruments, including stocks, options, futures, forex, and bonds, making it an ideal choice for diversified trading strategies. One of its notable features is its powerful trading platform, which provides advanced order types, customizable layouts, and extensive research tools for in-depth market analysis. Interactive Brokers also excels in its competitive pricing structure, offering low commissions and tight spreads.

Additionally, it offers direct market access, allowing traders to execute trades quickly and efficiently. Traders can benefit from a wide range of educational resources, including webinars and tutorials, to enhance their trading skills. Moreover, Interactive Brokers emphasizes regulatory compliance and maintains a strong focus on data security, ensuring a safe and reliable trading environment. With its extensive features and robust offerings, Interactive Brokers is an attractive choice for traders seeking a comprehensive and professional trading experience.

Pros of Interactive Brokers

  • Comprehensive range of financial instruments including stocks, options, futures, forex, and bonds.
  • Powerful trading platform with advanced order types and customizable layouts.
  • Extensive research tools for in-depth market analysis.
  • Competitive pricing structure with low commissions and tight spreads.
  • Direct market access for quick and efficient trade execution.

Cons of Interactive Brokers

  • Interactive Brokers has a long and tedious account opening process that can take several days to complete
  • Complex desktop trading platform
  • Customer support can be slow at times.
  • User interface may appear complex and overwhelming for some users.
Interactive Brokers Logo

Interactive Brokers provide leading online trading solutions for traders, investors and advisors, with direct global access to stocks, options, futures, currencies, bonds and funds.

Between 74-89% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.

Comparing Pepperstone and Interactive Brokers

Here are some key factors to consider when choosing between these two juggernauts of trading:


Pepperstone is regulated by three global Tier-1 licenses: ASIC, FCA, and DFSA. It also holds four Tier-2 licenses from SCB, CySEC, CMA, and BaFin. On the other hand, Interactive Brokers is regulated by nine global Tier-1 licenses, including SEC, FCA, and ASIC, and holds a Tier-2 license from DFSA. The higher number of top-tier regulators overseeing Interactive Brokers highlights its strong regulatory compliance and added protection for traders.

Trading Platforms

Interactive Brokers offers a diverse range of trading platforms to cater to different trader preferences. Their proprietary platform, Trader Workstation (TWS), is renowned for its robust functionality, advanced order types, and comprehensive research tools. It provides access to a wide array of markets and trading instruments. In addition to TWS, Interactive Brokers offers mobile apps for on-the-go trading and a web-based platform that provides a simplified trading experience with essential features accessible from any web browser. On the other hand, Pepperstone primarily offers the MetaTrader 4 (MT4) and MetaTrader 5 (MT5) platforms, which are popular among traders for their intuitive interface, extensive charting capabilities, and customizable indicators. These platforms are known for their vast ecosystem of third-party plugins and expert advisors, empowering traders with a wide range of technical analysis tools and automated trading options.

Pricing and Fees

Interactive Brokers is renowned for its competitive pricing structure. It offers commission-free trading on most products, allowing traders to execute trades without incurring additional charges. However, traders should note that certain products, such as options, may still have associated fees. On the other hand, Pepperstone operates on a commission-based model for its Razor account, where traders pay a transparent commission per trade. While commission fees are applicable, Pepperstone compensates for this by offering highly competitive spreads, ensuring cost-effective trading. It’s worth noting that spreads can vary based on market conditions and the specific account type chosen. In terms of forex trading, Interactive Brokers tends to have lower average spreads compared to Pepperstone, making it potentially more cost-effective in this regard.

Broker Type

Both brokers are non-dealing desk (NDD) brokers, which means they do not take the opposite side of their clients’ trades. Instead, they act as intermediaries between their clients and liquidity providers such as banks, hedge funds, or other brokers. This reduces the risk of conflict of interest and ensures fair and transparent execution. Pepperstone is also an electronic communication network (ECN) broker, which means it provides direct access to the interbank market and displays the best bid and asks prices from multiple liquidity providers. Interactive Brokers is also a straight-through processing (STP) broker, which means it automatically routes orders to the best available execution venue without any human intervention.


Pepperstone offers leverage ratios of up to 500:1, enabling traders to amplify their trading positions with a smaller amount of capital. Higher leverage ratios provide the potential for greater returns, but it’s essential to consider the associated risks as losses can also be magnified. On the other hand, Interactive Brokers offers leverage ratios of up to 50:1, which are generally lower than Pepperstone’s. This indicates a more conservative approach to leverage, emphasizing risk management and aligning with regulatory requirements in various jurisdictions.

Asset Selection

Interactive Brokers offers an extensive selection of trading instruments, giving traders access to over 135 markets in 33 countries. These include forex, indices, commodities, cryptocurrencies, shares, ETFs, options, futures, bonds, and CFDs. The broad range of instruments allows traders to diversify their portfolios and explore various markets and trading opportunities. Pepperstone, while slightly more limited in terms of the number of instruments offered, still provides access to over 150 instruments. These include forex, indices, commodities, cryptocurrencies, and shares. Both brokers offer a comprehensive selection of popular and sought-after instruments, catering to the needs of different traders.

Social Trading

Pepperstone offers more opportunities for social trading than Interactive Brokers. Pepperstone supports various third-party social trading platforms, such as ZuluTrade, Myfxbook, and DupliTrade, which allow traders to copy the trades of other successful traders or share their own strategies. Pepperstone also offers a proprietary social trading platform called Pepperstone Secure Client Area (SCA), which allows traders to access market news, analysis, webinars, and educational resources. Interactive Brokers does not support any third-party social trading platforms, but it offers its own social trading feature called IBKR Traders’ Insight, which provides market commentary, analysis and educational content from various contributors.

Minimum Deposit

Pepperstone does not have a minimum deposit requirement for opening an account with them, but they recommend that you deposit at least $200 to cover the margins of the positions you wish to open. This is also the minimum deposit amount for their Standard and Razor accounts, which offer different features and benefits for traders. Interactive Brokers requires a minimum deposit of $0 for its IBKR Lite account, which offers commission-free trading on US stocks and ETFs, and $10,000 for its IBKR Pro account, which offers lower fees and more advanced tools and features. However, Interactive Brokers waives the minimum deposit requirement for clients aged 25 or younger.

Withdrawal and Deposit Methods

Pepperstone offers more options for withdrawal and deposit methods than Interactive Brokers. Pepperstone supports 10 base currencies and allows deposits and withdrawals via bank transfer, credit/debit card, PayPal, Skrill, Neteller, POLi, BPay, and UnionPay. Interactive Brokers supports 23 base currencies and allows deposits and withdrawals via bank transfer, credit/debit card, check, and online bill payment. However, Interactive Brokers charges fees for some withdrawal methods, while Pepperstone does not charge any fees for deposits or withdrawals.

Pepperstone or Interactive Brokers: Which is Best for You?

Determining the best trading platform between Pepperstone and Interactive Brokers depends on your individual preferences and trading style. If you prioritize a user-friendly interface and the availability of popular MetaTrader platforms, Pepperstone may be the better choice. It offers competitive spreads, higher leverage options, and a wide range of instruments, making it suitable for traders seeking diverse trading opportunities. On the other hand, if you value extensive regulatory oversight, access to a variety of trading platforms including the powerful Trader Workstation (TWS), and a broader selection of global markets and instruments, Interactive Brokers may be the optimal fit. Additionally, Interactive Brokers’ commission-free trading on most products, lower average spreads for forex trading, and the ability to start with no minimum deposit can be appealing. Carefully consider your trading priorities, desired features, and risk appetite to make an informed decision on which platform is best suited for your specific trading needs.


Choosing the right trading platform is essential for traders seeking success in the online trading world. After a comprehensive comparison between Pepperstone and Interactive Brokers, it is evident that both platforms offer unique strengths and advantages. Pepperstone stands out with its user-friendly interfaces, popular MetaTrader platforms, and higher leverage options. On the other hand, Interactive Brokers impresses with extensive regulatory oversight, multiple trading platform options including the powerful Trader Workstation (TWS), and a broader selection of global markets. The ultimate decision on the best platform relies on individual preferences, trading styles, and specific requirements. By carefully considering the discussed factors, traders can confidently select the platform that best suits their needs and embark on their trading journey with confidence.

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