HF Markets Review 2020
HF Markets is a multi-regulated and socially responsible online broker who have won numerous awards and offer tight spreads and competitive commissions. They have a vast array of trading tools and educational material available.
HF Markets Review 2020, Pros & Cons
- Negative balance protection
- Investor compensation fund
- Segregated client funds
- Commission free accounts
- Premium trader tools
- Educational materials
- Free VPS
- No US clients
- Restricted leverage for EU clients
- No fixed spread accounts
In this detailed HF Markets review, our online broker research team have covered some of the most important aspects for you to consider when choosing the best broker for your online trading needs.
HF Markets is not ranked in our best forex brokers, best stock brokers, best cfd brokers, best crypto brokers or best online brokers categories. You can use our free broker comparison tool to compare online brokers including HF Markets.
HF Markets Review: Summary
Operating since 2010, HF Markets are a popular global online broker formerly known as Hot Forex. They offer retail and institutional trading services on a wide range of instruments across multiple markets including Forex, Commodities, Cryptocurrency, Stocks, Shares, Indices, Metals, Energies, Bonds & CFDs.
HF Markets have over 1.5 million live account holders and have won more than 25 awards for their transparent broker services. They employ more than 200 staff across the globe and provide support around the clock 24/5 in more than 27 languages. One of their main missions is to provide the best customer service to traders.
HF Markets are ranked within the World Finance Top 100 Global Companies. Some of the notable awards won include Best Client Funds Security Global (Global Brands Magazine), Fastest Growing Forex Broker MENA 2019 (International Business Magazine), Best Forex Mobile Application 2019 (Forex Awards), Best Forex Broker Latin America 2018 (International Business Magazine), Best Global Forex Trading Education Provider 2018 (Global Brands Magazine) and Best New Forex Broker South Africa 2016 (Global Banking & Finance Review Awards).
HF Markets have a policy of providing the best possible trading conditions including tight spreads from just 0 pips, fast execution and competitive commission. They offer a range of flexible account types, trading platforms, trading tools and unrestricted access to a liquidity pool for all traders.
HF Markets have a deep-rooted sense of social responsibility and believe that they should help those who are less fortunate. They actively lend assistance when the appropriate opportunity arises to do so. Some of the work they do includes charitable donations and other social initiatives to help contribute to local communities.
HF Markets Review: Regulation
HF Markets and HotForex are unified brand names of the HF Markets Group that includes the following companies.
HF Markets (Europe) Ltd a Cypriot Investment Firm (CIF) regulated by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC). CySEC is the supervisory and regulatory authority for Investment Services firms in Cyprus and is a member of the Committee of the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA).
HF Markets (Europe) Ltd. is required to disclose information relating to its capital, the risks that the Company is exposed to as well as to promote market discipline. They must also be compliant with the European Union’s Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID) which is in place to provide a harmonised regulatory regime for investment services within Europe. The primary objectives of MiFID are to increase efficiency, enhance financial transparency, increase competition, and offer greater consumer protection in investment services.
HF Markets (UK) Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The FCA is an independent public body governed by the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (FSMA), working alongside the UK Treasury with the aim to support and empower a healthy and successful financial system where firms can thrive and consumers benefit from honest, fair and effective markets that are trustworthy and transparent.
The UK and European companies have some trading restrictions because of the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) influence. This includes maximum leverage of 1:30.
HF Markets (DIFC) Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA). Aiming to develop, administer and enforce world-class regulation of financial services within the Middle East’s leading financial hub, DFSA is the independent regulator of financial services conducted in or from the Dubai International Financial Centre.
HF Markets SA (PTY) Ltd is an authorised Financial Service Provider from the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) in South Africa. FSCA is an independent institution established by statute to oversee the South African non-banking financial services industry. It regulates the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE), the largest exchange in the African continent.
HF Markets (Seychelles) Ltd is regulated by the Seychelles Financial Services Authority (FSA). The authority is the regulator for non-bank financial services in the country and is responsible for the licensing, supervision and development of the non-bank financial services industry of the Seychelles.
HF Markets Ltd is regulated by the Financial Services Commission (FSC) of the Republic of Mauritius.
Each of the HF Markets companies are under strict regulation which helps to give clients peace of mind that they are using a trusted and reliable broker that must abide by strict regulatory rules. You can choose to open an account at the relevant entity according to your jurisdiction and trading requirements.
Regulated brokers must comply with strict financial standards which includes capital adequacy requirements. HF Markets is required to submit financial reports to the regulator on a quarterly basis whilst maintaining a sufficient amount of liquid capital to cover all of their clients’ deposits, potential fluctuations in the company’s currency positions, and outstanding expenses. A detailed annual audit is performed by an independent internal auditor to inform the regulator of any deficiencies.
Security of client funds is a top priority. In order to allow traders to focus on their trading without needing to worry about safety of funds, they have implemented additional security measures.
Clients funds are already protected under the regulatory requirements and to further safeguard liabilities against clients, HF Markets EU have an insurance program at no extra cost to client. This insurance is limited to 5 million and covers against risks that may lead to financial loss such as errors, negligence, omissions, fraud, etc.
HF Markets EU hold client funds in separate accounts with major global banks so they cannot be used for any other purpose. There is negative balance protection which means that in volatile market conditions, the client is not responsible for a negative balance scenario.
HF Markets EU is a member of the Investor Compensation Fund (ICF). The purpose of the ICF is to secure the claims of covered clients against the ICF members through the payment of compensation if the necessary preconditions are fulfilled. This fund was established under the Investment Firms Law of 2002 as amended (‘the Law’) and the Establishment and Operation of an Investor Compensation Fund for Customers of CIFs Regulations of 2004 which were issued under the Law. The Fund constitutes a private legal entity which is administered by a committee of five members who are each designated for three-year terms. The Fund has been operating since May 30, 2004.
HF Markets Review: Countries
The HF Markets Group accepts clients from all over the world, excluding USA, Canada, Sudan, Syria and North Korea. Some HF Markets broker features and products mentioned within this HF Markets review may not be available to traders from specific countries due to legal restrictions.
If you are looking for a trading broker in a particular country, please see our best brokers USA, best brokers UK, best brokers Australia, best brokers South Africa, best brokers Canada or our best brokers for all other countries.
HF Markets Review: Trading Platforms
HF Markets offer the popular MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 trading platforms. MetaTrader is available for desktop, web and mobile. It is worth noting that HF Markets offer a vast array of trading tools that can be added to the platforms to improve overall functionality.
HF Markets MetaTrader 4 (MT4)
Developed by Russian company MetaQuotes Software and released in 2005, MetaTrader 4, also known as MT4, is an electronic trading platform that is the most widely used platform today. It is often seen as the entry platform for those who are new to online trading whilst being advanced enough to satisfy the needs of the more experienced traders.
MT4 is very well known for its user-friendly interface, variety of trading tools and resources. It allows users to analyse different asset charts across multiple timeframes with 50+ built in indicators and tools for conducting thorough technical analysis.
The built in MetaEditor can be used to develop your own custom indicators and automated trading systems (expert advisors) in the MQL4 programming language. There is also a large online community where users share indicators and expert advisors.
MT4 supports one click trading, multiple order types, displays live price quotes in the market watch window, has a news feed embedded directly within the platform and shows real time client account summary including account balance, equity, margin and floating profit/loss.
MT4 is available on desktop (Windows / Mac), web and mobile (iPhone / iPad / Android / Tablet).
HF Markets Multi-Terminal
The multi-terminal platform offers an efficient way to simultaneously manage multiple trading accounts from one interface. It has the familiarity and powerful features of MT4 with added functionality. It supports an unlimited amount of trading accounts that are updated in real time. You can monitor live price feeds, view account history and execute multiple order types.
HF Markets MetaTrader 4 (MT4) Web Terminal
The MT4 web terminal provides the same intuitive platform and functions as the MT4 desktop platform directly from any web browser. This is beneficial as you do not need to download, install and run any other additional software whilst you can trade from anywhere in the world with an internet connection. Other benefits include trade directly from charts, configurable charts and real-time quotes.
HF Markets MetaTrader 4 (MT4) Mobile Terminal
The MT4 mobile terminal is compatible with Android and iOS devices. It is specifically designed for trading on the go with full functionality. You can access your account and conduct your trading activities from anywhere at any time, provided you have an internet connection. The MT4 mobile app is available to download for free from the relevant app stores.
HF Markets MetaTrader 5 (MT5)
MT5 gives you all the benefits of MT4 with some extra features including 21 different timeframes, 100+ technical indicators, ability to view 100+ charts simultaneously, enhanced order management capabilities and more.
MT5 is a powerful but user-friendly platform that offers total control of your trades for an enhanced trading experience. Whilst MT4 would be suitable for most traders, MT5 is also easily accessible and available on desktop (Windows / Mac), web and mobile (iPhone / iPad / Android / Tablet).
HF Markets MetaTrader 5 (MT5) Web Terminal
The MT5 web terminal gives you all of the same features as the MT5 desktop terminal without the need to download, install or run any software. You can just launch the web terminal from any computer and browser then start trading in seconds with all the same functions as the MT5 desktop platform.
HF Markets MetaTrader 5 (MT5) Mobile Terminal
The MT5 mobile terminal gives you full control over your account on your Android and iOS phone or tablet devices. This platform is useful for traders who need to conveniently access their accounts on the go from where in the world. You can place traders, manage positions and conduct chart analysis. Push notification signals are also supported.
HF Markets Review: Trading Tools
HF Markets clients have access to download premium trader tools which provide institutional quality technology, advanced trading tools, market news and analysis. Premium tools can be used by all levels of traders and different requirements. They have evolved over time based on user feedback and each tool includes detailed user guides and tutorial videos.
This useful tool is full of features for analysing instruments and executing trades. There are a number of extra features that are not usually included by default within the trading platforms which can improve the speed and ease of trading.
The trade terminal supports one click trading, gives an overview of current account metrics, displays a list of all open positions and pending orders, allows users to carry out multiple operations all at once, set money management rules templates and analysis of positions.
This is an extension of the trade terminal designed for traders who want to concentrate on a specific market. It displays the same deal ticket as the trade terminal in the context of a specific trading chart and can be undocked from its trading chart into a floating window. Smart lines let you set stop loss and take profit levels by drawing lines. The deal ticket in the mini terminal allows you to set money management options and create templates for frequently used functions. There are quick links for buying, selling, closing all positions, reversing positions or hedging.
The connect tool provides a fully customisable automatically updated news feed and economic calendar. You can choose to receive the real time news relevant to you and set alerts.
The sentiment tool shows the current and historical market sentiment on a chosen instrument by displaying the number of HF Market traders who are short or long. This is often used as part of a contrarian trading strategy against the sentiment.
The session map shows you an overview of the key markets and time zones. It shows the current time which is adjustable according to your location, markers for up and coming news releases, overview of price movements from each trading session. The main trading sessions are New York, London, Tokyo and Sydney.
The alarm manager is like having a personal assistant that can notify you and your social media followers about specific events and can perform a number of automatic actions for you including opening positions, sending emails and more.
This tool can use simple formulas to send real time account, ticket and price data directly into Excel. If you have the programming skills, it can also send trade commands from Excel or any other COM environment.
The market manager is a small window that stays on top so you can keep it in view whilst using other applications such as your web browser or media player. It provides an overview of all account activity and supports multiple actions from within the window.
The correlation matrix displays the correlation between different markets with colour coded highlighted areas of low or high correlation. This correlation information can be used as part of the technical analysis for a trading strategy.
The correlation trader enables users to compare the correlation between 2 different instruments for spotting emerging differences. It also shows any open positions on the chosen symbol and recent price activity.
Tick Chart Trader
This tool displays various different types of tick charts and can be used for fast order entry using single mouse-clicks or keyboard shortcuts.
MT4 Indicator Package
This is a package of very useful and commonly requested additional chart indicators for the MetaTrader 4 (MT4) trading platform. Indicators include Renko bars, pivot points, chart-grouping, highs and lows, order history, candle countdown, and freehand drawing directly onto the chart.
The free Autochartist tool will scan your chosen instruments for chart and technical patterns then alert you when it finds an opportunity. This saves you time from having to scan multiple charts yourself and patterns can be filtered by probability.
The HF Markets App
The HF app provides clients with live streaming market prices, news, market analysis and access to the HF Markets client area. Other trading tools are available from within the app as is a collection of educational material to help you learn whilst on the go.
HFcopy allows traders to offer signals for followers to copy automatically to their trading account. Signal providers can receive a performance fee whilst followers maintain full control over their account and can choose from and manage the traders they are following at any time. It must be noted that past signal performance is by no means any guarantee of future performance.
The customisable economic calendar lets traders keep track of the latest global economic news events with indications on the potential impact the news can have. Actual, consensus and previous results of the news releases are displayed. Users can filter the news according to the date, country and level of impact. This calendar can be used to assist with fundamental analysis.
The traders board allows users to get breaking market news, identify the biggest currency movers, gauge market sentiment with a breakdown of client positions and analyse volume traded per symbol.
HF Markets One Click Trading
The one click trading functionality lets you place trades with a single click which can be useful for those who depend on fast execution such as scalpers.
HF Markets VPS Hosting
HF Markets offer a virtual private server (VPS) starting from $30 per month or free upon request for eligible clients who meet the $5,000 minimum account requirement to qualify.
A VPS lets you run your trading platform 24/7 without needing your computer switched on which can be useful for those traders who wish to run automated systems (expert advisors) and those who have an unreliable internet connection. They can minimise downtime and be accessed remotely.
HF Markets VPS provider is Beeks Financial Cloud who have a presence in nine international data centres so as to ensure lightning-fast response times. Their focus is to provide low latency, rock solid VPS and infrastructure solutions for traders with an easily accessible trading platform.
HF Markets Calculators
There are a number of different trading calculators that can help with planning and managing positions. The calculators can calculate risk percentage, multiple targets, pivot points, pip value, position size, risk/reward and Fibonacci levels.
HF Markets Review: Education
HF Markets have a range of educational resources aimed towards improving trader’s knowledge and skills. There is something for every level of trader with free live webinars, market analysis, training videos, eCourses and more.
There are frequently run free live webinars which include tips and knowledge from HF Market experts. Webinars cover a variety of different trading topics from strategies to market analysis. They are concluded with Q&A sessions that allow you to communicate directly with the presenter. Past webinars are also available to view from the archive.
HF Markets Exclusive Analysis
HF Markets have a team of experienced market analysts with over 25 years of experience sharing the latest market analysis and forecasts with traders. This includes detailed fundamental analysis of news releases, technical analysis across multiple asset classes and special reports. There is a very generous amount of frequently updated materials to help you understand how the markets work and for you to keep up to date with the latest market happenings and to find potential trade opportunities.
Educational & Tutorial Videos
HF Markets offer a series of educational videos that cover the trading basics, help you to understand various financial markets, give you insights into fundamental/technical analysis and explain how psychology can impact your trading.
HF Markets Trading eCourse
Clients can access HF Markets comprehensive educational eCourse from the myHF client portal. The course is easy to follow with step by step guides introducing you to the basics of trading. It goes on to show you how you can read and interpret financial charts, understand trading strategies, how to develop the right trading psychology and putting what you have learned into practice.
There is a frequently asked question (FAQ) section on the HF Markets website that covers a variety of trading topics such as accounts, platforms, terminology and more.
Global Economic Releases
This section explains the importance of economic releases from each country.
HF Markets Review: Trading Instruments
HF Markets is a multi-asset broker who have a generous amount of global financial trading instruments covering multiple markets including Forex, Cryptocurrencies, Spot Metals, Energies, Commodities, Indices, Bonds and popular Shares such as Google, Apple and Facebook.
HF Markets offer 50+ major, minor and exotic forex currency pairs to trade 24/5 with very competitive spreads (starting from 0 pips) and commissions.
HF Markets offer the major cryptos for trading including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Ripple and Dash.
HF Markets offer gold, silver and other spot metals in both USD and EUR.
You can trade a host of the world’s leading Indices such as the UK 100, USA 100 and Shanghai Composite.
HF Markets allows you to trade stocks in over 50+ global leading blue-chip companies such as Microsoft, Google, Apple, Facebook and Coca Cola.
HF Markets offer popular energies for trading such as oil and gas. Spreads and margins are competitive.
HF Markets offer commission free trading on commodities such as coffee, cotton and sugar.
HF Markets offer bonds issued by the worlds leading economies, including the Euro Bunds, UK Gilts and US 10-year Treasury Notes.
HF Markets Review: Trading Accounts & Fees
HF Markets offer a variety of flexible account types to suit the specific requirements of different traders. Accounts vary from the minimum deposit required, lot sizes and trading conditions. Swap free Islamic accounts that comply with Sharia law are available. Demo accounts can be opened to test the different trading platforms and account conditions before opening a real account.
The micro account is designed for new traders and those who are trading smaller volumes, it allows clients to trade smaller trade sizes and open an account with a lower initial deposit. The minimum deposit is $50, minimum lot size 0.01 and maximum lot size 7. Spreads are variable starting from 1 pip and there is no commission charged. The maximum amount of simultaneous open orders allowed is 150.
The premium account accommodates the more experienced retail traders. One of the key features is the flexibility in position sizing. The minimum deposit is $100, minimum lot size 0.01 and maximum lot size 60. Spreads are variable starting from 1 pip and there is no commission charged. The maximum amount of simultaneous open orders allowed is 300.
Zero Spread Account
The zero spread account is suitable for all traders, but is particularly useful for scalpers, high-volume traders and those who trade with expert advisors. The variable spreads starting from 0 pips are raw direct from liquidity providers with no hidden mark ups and there is a competitive commission charged. Commission starts from as low as $0.03 per standard lot depending on trading volume. The more volume traded, the better the commission that can be negotiated. The minimum deposit is $200, minimum lot size 0.01 and maximum lot size 60. The maximum amount of simultaneous open orders allowed is 500.
The HFcopy account is for traders who wish to provide signals and for followers who wish to copy these signals. Signal providers can receive a performance fee whilst followers can get automated trading signals directly to their account. This account is only available to clients whose suitability will be assessed prior to participation. It should be emphasised that past performance does not at all guarantee future results. The minimum deposit is $100, minimum lot size 0.01 and maximum lot size 60. Spreads are variable starting from 1 pip and there is no commission charged. The maximum amount of simultaneous open orders allowed is 300.
Premium Pro Account
The premium pro account is to cater for the needs of clients who qualify as professional traders. It is for the more experienced and knowledgeable traders. The minimum deposit is $500, minimum lot size 0.01 and maximum lot size 60. Spreads are variable starting from 1 pip and there is no commission charged. The maximum amount of simultaneous open orders allowed is 300. One of the main differences of this account is the ability to apply for increased leverage.
As broker fees can vary and change, there may be additional fees that are not listed in this HF Markets review. It is imperative to ensure that you check and understand all of the latest information before you open a HF Markets broker account for online trading.
HF Markets Review: Customer Service
HF Markets customer support is available in 27 languages and provided 24/5 via online chat, telephone and email. Local customer support phone numbers are available in 10 countries, including United Kingdom, Germany, China, Russia, and South Africa. There is a trading desk available to all account holders for clients who wish to close and manage orders over the phone. This can be useful should you lose internet connection.
HF Markets Review: Deposit & Withdrawal
HF Markets offer a selection of deposit and withdrawal methods to suit different client needs. All live account holders automatically qualify for free account funding. They will even refund you if your bank charges you for making a deposit.
The method you choose may depend on how long it takes to process. If you want something quick then you may consider an online payment processor such as Skrill or Neteller. Please note that some methods may only be available to specific countries.
Some fees may be charged when using certain payment methods. Bank transfers may take a few business days to clear whilst some methods such as card payments can be instant.
Accounts can be opened in USD, EUR. The different currency options are beneficial as currency conversion fees do not apply when using an account in your own currency.
HF Markets Review: Account Opening
The HF Markets website has a convenient online application form. You just need to fill it out and submit it, then verify your email address. Following on from that you will need to upload a proof of identification such as a passport and proof of address such as a utility bill. This is a normal part of the KYC procedure. Once the accounts team has verified your documents you will then be able to fund your account and start trading.
HF Markets Review: Conclusion
HF Markets is a well-established and multi-regulated online broker that offer a range of trading instruments across multiple asset classes. They have won numerous awards and offer clients competitive trading conditions including tight spreads and low commissions. Account types and trading platforms are flexible whilst there is a vast collection of trading tools and educational material available to traders. The charitable work that they do is highly commendable and shows great social responsibility.
CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 72.48% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with HF Markets (Europe) Ltd. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.