BenchMark Finance Review
Richard Montana | November 17, 2022
BenchMark Finance is a multi-regulated and well-established online broker providing access to over 30,000 financial securities on the MetaTrader platforms (MT4/MT5) with tight spreads, competitive fees and good execution speeds. The broker has been around for many years and is primarily focused on the Bulgarian market. I have always found them a pleasure to deal with and feel they are more suited towards the professional trader who just wants a convenient way to buy and sell financial instruments across multiple asset classes.
Pros & Cons
- Excellent selection of over 30,000 financial securities
- User-friendly MetaTrader platforms for all of your devices
- 0% commissions on deposits and withdrawals
- Non dealing desk execution at the best available prices
- Selection of trading tools to help with analysing the markets
- Good range of educational content to educate beginners
- Minimum deposit to open an account is just $1
- Free demo practice accounts
- Fantastic customer support
- Cannot accept clients from some countries due to regulators
- Limited payment options with no digital wallets
- Lack of comprehensive daily analysis to help inspire trade ideas
- No managed accounts for investors and money managers
- No Islamic swap-free accounts for Muslim traders
BenchMark Finance is an online forex and CFD broker that offers a plethora of tradable assets for trading on the MT4 and MT5 trading platforms. The ‘BenchMark’ brand is operated by ‘BenchMark Finance’ which is part of the ‘BenchMark Group’. This group was established in Bulgaria in 2003 and is well known in the European market. BenchMark has additional offices in the UK and in Spain. The website is available in 8 languages including Bulgarian, English, Spanish, Russian, Turkish, French, German and Chinese. It is always good to see a broker that has won industry standard awards for excellence notably in development of the capital market and the financial sector.
Having been in the brokerage business for many years, BenchMark Finance has grown in strength, service and technology. The broker offers thousands of trading instruments from the renowned financial markets across the globe. BenchMark use the latest innovative trading technologies with no dealing desk (NDD) execution free of requotes. No Dealing Desk trading provides maximum transparency and accountability in the execution of all orders. I would always opt for an NDD broker over a market maker as I do not want my broker to be taking the opposite side of my positions. This could inevitably lead to a conflict of interest.
The broker provides quotes direct from liquidity providers (LPs) including 10 leading banks. They use the server infrastructure of Equinix Data Center in New York which has an optical network spanning across the globe. This means that you can get your trades placed at the best available prices from the brokers vast liquidity pool at all times with minimal slippage. BenchMark Finance accommodates all levels of trader, trading styles and strategies, including Expert Advisors (EAs). There are some handy educational resources and demo accounts which enables users of all levels to practice their trading skills in a live trading environment at no risk to the trader.
BenchMark Finance is an investment intermediary, part of the structure of BenchMark Group, established in 2003, which is regulated by the Financial Supervision Commission in Bulgaria and is licensed under the MiFID. BenchMark Finance is licensed to offer investment services on the territory of Spain by Spain National Securities Numbering Agency (CNMV), on the territory of Germany by Germany Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin), on the territory of France by France Financial Markets Regulator (AMF) and other members of the European Union. BenchMark Finance is regulated in Bulgaria by the Financial Supervision Commission (FSC). This is pretty solid regulation in my opinion and I therefore wouldn’t have any problem trusting the broker for my day trading activities. After all, regulations are put in place to ensure the broker must operate in a transparent manner and to protect investors.
Client deposits are not used by BenchMark Finance; rather they are kept separately from the broker funds in segregated bank accounts. The deposits are stored in reputable banks which includes UniCredit Bulbank, Raiffeisen Bank, Allianz Bank and Caixa Bank. BenchMark’s website and platforms are secured with a 128 bit Secured Socket Layer (SSL) encryption. So, all data inputted by clients are encrypted before it is transmitted to the servers.
Becnhmarkfx do not accept clients from the United States of America and some other countries where there are strict regulations in place. If you find that your country is not accepted for any reason, please feel free to take a look at our broker reviews for some different options.
MetaTrader 4 (MT4) and MetaTrader 5 (MT5) are the trading platforms offered by BenchMark Finance. The platforms were designed by the same company; ‘MetaQuotes Software Corporation’. Thus, the MT4 and MT5 look very similar and have similar features except for the fact that MT5 is newer and has some additional features. If you can learn how to use one of the platforms, you shouldn’t have any issues switching to the other. Both platforms are ideal for anyone who wants convenient access to trade online with lots of tools for conducting market analysis. The MetaTrader platforms are available in the following formats.
The WebTrader versions of MetaTrader run on most modern web browser and do not require you to download or install any software. They can be accessed via a link from the BenchMark’s website. When the login screen loads, click on the option button to choose either the MT4 or MT5 WebTrader. I like how the web platform is always up to date and can be accessed from any device.
Here are some MT4/MT5 WebTrader features.
- Requires no downloads or installations
- Runs on all operating systems
- The WebTrader most of the same functions when compared to the desktop versions
- Full account integration with both the mobile and desktop versions
- Order management, account management and charting capabilities
MT4/MT5 Desktop Platforms
This is the full feature version of the MetaTrader platforms. I use the desktop platforms for conducting in-depth market analysis and running automated trading systems. The link to download the MT4 and the MT5 versions of the MetaTrader are found on BenchMark’s website. The desktop versions can only be installed on a windows computer.
Here are some of the key features:
- Full access to all platform features including installation of Expert Advisors (EAs) for automated forex/CFD trading
- Access to the MQL market where traders can buy trading signals, indicators, EAs and other trading tools. Some tools and subscriptions from the MetaTrader market are free
- One-click trading can be activated as well as trading from the charts
- Alert notifications via the platform, SMS and email
- The MT4 has 4 pending orders while the MT5 has 6. All orders can be monitored, adjusted or closed at any time
- MT4 has 9 timeframes whilst MT5 has 21
- Full charting and technical analysis can be done on both platforms
- There are more indicators on the MT5 but both platforms can accommodate more platforms via plugin apps
MT4/MT5 Mobile Apps
Both MT4 and MT5 have free mobile trading apps which were developed for the Android and iOS operating systems and available from the relevant app stores. These are great for accessing your account whilst on the move and keeping up to date with the latest market news.
Here are some of the mobile apps’ features:
- The app interface is simple and user friendly
- Live quotes in real time which is good for monitoring asset prices
- Positions can easily be opened, modified or closed
- 4 Pending orders on the MT4 and 6 on the MT5 mobile apps
- Technical analysis using charts, indicators and analytical tools
- Push price alert notifications
I actually think the MetaTrader platforms have more than enough tools already included for most traders. You can also get loads more from the MetaTrader marketplace and even develop your own using the built-in programming interface. That being said, the broker does provide some additional tools to help you along your way.
Virtual Private Server (VPS)
The Virtual Private Server (VPS) is important to traders who use EAs or other trading systems. A VPS can run the trading platform 24/7 and helps to eliminate hardware failure, power or internet fluctuations even when the trader is offline. Benchmark Finance provides access to a VPS at a cost of $35 every month. You can get a free VPS from some other brokers including Key to Markets.
This tool helps a trader see the market sentiment by showing how many other BenchMark traders are buying or selling a specified instrument. Sentiment analysis is often used as part of a contrarian trading strategy. I think it is good to get a feel for what other traders are doing as it can help gauge the market direction.
This economic calendar shows the date and time when microeconomic data of major world economies will be released. The currency affected, forecast and history are displayed by this tool. This economic calendar is often used to assist traders with conducting fundamental analysis. I always like to check the calendar before making any decision on my positions.
Becnhmarkfx have a selection of trading calculators which can be used to help traders determine the risk or fees involved before making trade decisions. This can help to speed up the process of planning your trades which can help if you are in a bit of a rush. The featured calculators are:
- The exchange calculator
- Swap calculator
- Margin calculator
- Risk calculator
- Stop-out calculator
This consists of a set of tools that shows the price action of selected instruments and other analytics. There is the ‘market heat map’ which shows the highest and the lowest price of an asset in a day, week or month. The volatility map measures the price fluctuations of an instrument within a defined period. There is a list of all the financial instruments showing the opening price, closing price and other parameters. The list is searchable and can be viewed for today, yesterday, this week or this month. I think this is an excellent tool to help as part of market analysis to confirm trades.
It is always good to see a broker that cares about clients making informed decisions, which is why they have provided a good selection of educational content to help educate beginners. The education centre on the BenchMark website consists of the following sections:
There are 12 trading videos introducing trading terms, techniques, analysis, indicators, strategies and trading psychology. The total length of the videos is over 2 hours which is plenty of content for you to get your teeth stuck into.
These are downloadable PDF eBooks that aim to teach how to trade with the MT4 and MT5 platforms. I think this are handy trading guides but nothing that you can find elsewhere online.
This section is made up of a series of articles grouped for different trader levels, namely: beginners, intermediate and advanced traders. You can work through these in your own time with lots of topics covered for everyone to learn something new.
Benchmarkfx asserts that if has a fantastic selection of over 30,000 financial securities on the international financial markets. I was really blown away by the vast selection to be honest. Whatever your interests, everyone should be able to build their very own bespoke portfolio diversified over various asset classes. The asset index comprises of the following instruments:
- 180+ forex currency pairs made up of the most popular major, minor and exotic pairs
- Over 19,000 shares from 36 stock exchanges from all over the world
- Major world indices
- Around 200 future contracts
- Around 9,000 CFDs
- Precious metals including gold and silver
- Oil and gas commodities
BenchMark Finance allows traders to open a retail account or a professional account. The trading accounts can only be denominated in EUR or USD which means that you will need to pay a currency conversion fee if you are funding in a different currency. During account creation, you will choose either to trade on the MT4 or MT5 platform. There are no minimum opening balances for each account type. The spread starts from just 0.1 pips for the EUR/USD currency pair which is very good for anyone who plans on trading with scalping strategies. Commissions are charged only for trading shares and I found them to be very competitive.
This is specially created for experienced clients, large volume traders or clients with a portfolio worth at least $500,000. Eligibility is determined by the broker upon application and presentation of qualification evidence. Leverage is up to 1:400 with a 30% stop out. I actually get the feeling that this particular broker is more suited towards professional clients.
This is for individuals who can be beginners, intermediate or even experienced traders. The maximum leverage offered is 1:30. The stop-out level is at 50%. I would opt for this account as it gives straight forward access to trade and invest in the huge range of instruments that the broker has available with minimal hassle.
If you want to see what the broker has to offer, you could start with a free demo account. This comes preloaded with virtual funds and can be a good way to practice using your trading strategies to build some confidence before opening a trading account.
BenchMark has a customer service team that works 24/5. They speak Bulgarian and English. You can contact the support desk via phone calls, emails and instant live chat. There are several international support representatives in different countries. The broker is on social media; Facebook, YouTube and Twitter. I have always found them to be a pleasure to deal with. They have been very friendly and quick to help with all my concerns.
This is an aspect of the brokerage firm which I think could do with some improvement. Currently, you can only fund your account using bank transfer and card payments. I would like to see them add some digital wallets as I this can be a more convenient way for the modern trader to move funds around. However, it is good that the broker does not charge deposit or withdrawal fees on their side. BenchMark Finance must strictly adhere to Anti-Money Laundering (AML) rules and therefore will not accept deposits from third parties.
All major credit and debit cards are accepted. Card deposits are processed within 30 minutes. The accepted currencies are EUR and USD.
Bank Wire Transfers
BenchMark Finance processes transfers form 07-14:45 GMT every working day. Any costs imposed by BenchMark Review bankers or payment processors are transferred to the client. Bank transfer withdrawals are processed within 30 minutes by BenchMark Finance but it can take 3-5 days to reach the client’s bank account. It all depends on the bank and account currency.
This is done between clients’ accounts. The order can be placed at anytime but it is only processed between 7am and 2:45pm every business day.
Compare Broker Features
|This Broker||AvaTrade||IG||IC Markets|
|Regulated||ADGM FRSA, ASIC, BVIFSC, CBI, FFAJ, FSCA, IIROC, JFSA||ASIC, BaFin, CFTC, DFSA, FCA, FINMA, FMA, FSA, FSCA, JFSA, MAFF, MAS, METI, NFA||ASIC, CySEC, FSA, SCB|
|Commission||From $0||From $0||From $0|
|Instruments||Forex, Commodities, Crypto, Stocks, Indices, Options, Bonds, ETFs||Forex, Commodities, Crypto, Stocks, Indices, Options, Bonds, ETFs||Forex, Commodities, Crypto, Stocks, Indices, Bonds|
|Platforms||MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader 5, AvaTradeGO, AvaOptions, AvaSocial, DupliTrade, ZuluTrade||MetaTrader 4, IG Platform, IG Progressive Web App, ProRealTime (PRT), L2 Dealer, FIX API||MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader 5, cTrader|
|Funding||Bank Transfer, Credit/Debit Card, E-Wallets||Bank Transfer, Credit/Debit Card, E-Wallets||Bank Transfer, Credit/Debit Card, E-Wallets|
Overall, I feel that BenchMark Finance is broker with a solid reputation that doesn’t rely on over the top marketing campaigns. They are perhaps more suited towards professional clients who want a large range of financial instruments to trade on intuitive yet powerful platforms across all of their devices. I do like how the broker is regulated in multiple countries and adheres strictly to the stipulations imposed by the regulatory authorities.
Perhaps, where BenchMark Finance beats the competition is in its assets index. With over 30,000 financial securities on the international financial markets, there is more than enough for every trader. The MetaTrader platforms are a popular choice suitable for most traders irrespective of their trading strategies, styles or experience.
However, the payment options are limited when compared to other brokers. BenchMark Finance has no in-house analysts that provide daily technical and fundamental analysis. They do provide some additional trading tools and educational resources for beginners along with free demo accounts if you want to get a feel for what they have to offer. Alternatively, please feel free to peruse for other options from our broker ratings.