FCA Money Protection:
Last Updated: June 8, 2021
FCA Money Protection:
Demo, Retail, Professional
Depending on the spread
Not disclosed ($278.3m shareholder returns in 2020)
FCA, ASIC, CySec, FSCA, FSA, MAS
British international financial firm Plus500 is one of the most popular contracts for differences (CFD) providers. Due to its dominance in the UK, Germany, and Spain, users from these countries may find our Plus500 review very useful.
Yet, interest in this online trading platform goes beyond the European markets. Can US traders use Plus500, and what should you know about this CFD option? What are the fees and tools available? Read on and find out!
Risk warning: 76.4% of retail CFD accounts lose money.
What Is Plus500?
All Plus500 reviews should first point out that this platform provides only CFD services.
Contracts for differences, or CFDs, are complex instruments that allow investors to speculate on an underlying asset’s price direction over the very short-term. Due to leverage, there’s a high risk of losing money.
Disclaimer: While widespread, Plus500 is not universally available, and there are some restricted countries, including the US, where CFD trading is forbidden.
While a simple user interface makes Plus500 somewhat beginner-friendly, those who are making their first steps in the world of online investing might want to look for an alternative. The platform is convenient for experienced crypto traders, though. It currently allows trade in eight cryptocurrencies, including the two most popular — Bitcoin (BTC) and Etherium (ETH).
How to Use Plus500?
The proper use of Plus500 involves an understanding of how CFD works. Apart from this, use+rs should go through several technical steps. Here’s a rundown of the basics for one of the best day trading platforms out there.
What are the account requirements?
Other than providing their name and contact information, investors registering on the Plus500 trading platform need to provide proof of identity — ID, passport, driving license, or residence permit. In terms of proof of residency, you could offer a bank statement, utility bill, toll tax letter, address card, or a salary slip.
During the registration process, investors also select the account mode — Demo or Real Money. If you choose the latter, you’ll have to deposit a minimum of $100.
How to start trading?
After opening an account and logging in, users can locate a ‘trade’ tab. Immediately, they should notice the buy/sell and the position screen.
One thing worth pointing out in this Plus500 review is the ability to place stop orders for your instruments of choice. This will limit potential damages and ensure that you don’t miss out on lucrative opportunities. Setting stop orders means automating your trades and making them more secure.
What can you trade?
Plus500 offers CFD on a plethora of assets. Some of them are shares, indices, forex, ETFs, options, and commodities. Its most popular financial instrument, nonetheless, is cryptocurrencies. Other than Plus500 Bitcoin trading, the platform offers the following crypto options:
- Crypto 10 Index
- Bitcoin Cash ABC
What tools are available?
The percentage of retail traders losing money on Plus500 is pretty high (although not far from the industry average). One of the reasons behind this might be the risk management tools underuse.
The stop limit and stop-loss orders are the two most common and most effective tools available. But our Plus500 trading review can’t go without mentioning the guaranteed stop and trailing stop options. These are advanced stop orders, which allow setting an absolute limit or locking in a certain amount of profit, respectively.
How does the platform work?
As stated before, Plus500 is a provider of CFD services. Neither the platform nor the user actually holds the asset — investors just bet on its price movement. This creates an opportunity to trade in the opposite direction, as well. For instance, during Plus500 online trading sessions, if the trader believes that the asset will lose value in a particular short term, they should open a Sell position.
Plus500 gets compensated for its services through the market spread. The platform doesn’t charge commissions. See what exactly comes at $0 price:
- Deposits and withdrawals
- Real-time forex quotes
- Live share CFD prices
- Opening/closing trades
- Dynamic charts and graphs
- Rolling your position
There are, nonetheless, some additional fees worth mentioning in this Plus500.com review. For instance:
- Currency conversion fee (currently up to 0.7% of trade’s realized net profit and loss)
- Guaranteed stop order fee
- Overnight funding (formula based on trade size, position opening rate, point value, and daily overnight funding)
- Inactivity fee
When it comes to the inactivity fee, the platform charges $10 per month after three months of not logging in. Please note that doesn’t mean three months without stock trading or crypto trading.
If you decide to compare it to the rest of the industry, you will find that Plus500 financing rates are relatively high. This means that there are high costs for those who prefer margin trading and holding on to a position for a prolonged period.
Most people browse Plus500 reviews to find and compare the trading fees. They really depend on the spread. According to available information, the average spread is between 0.6 and 0.7 pips.
One last thing worth mentioning here is the deposit methods. Plus500 supports bank transfers, credit/debit card transfers, and electronic wallets. Across all of these methods, the deposit fee is $0.
Plus500 Mobile App
It’s good for those interested in trading via their mobile device to know that the Plus500 app is available on both Android and iOS. In 2020, there were more than 10 million Google Play installs of this app.
There are no features that are either added or omitted from the mobile version. In other words, the functionality remains the same as that on the desktop Plus500 trading platform.
The biggest downside comes in the lack of chart syncing between web and mobile. Another concern comes from the absence of enhanced security measures. Another thing missing is the news and research tools variety.
One more thing worth mentioning is that no e-wallet is needed for trading with the Plus500 mobile app.
Plus500 Customer Service
Right off the bat, Plus500 has a great FAQ page that could aid investors. Other than this, Plus500 ‘contact us’ section allows a more personal approach. The support team is available 24/7, and it usually doesn’t take long for any question to be answered.
The platform lacks a robo-advisor feature, which usually leaves more work for human customer support representatives. Outlined in pretty much every Plus500 crypto review, this is considered a major downside due to the number of new traders in this field which require personal guidance.
An adequate way to determine the position of Plus500 in this industry is to make a quick comparison against some of its closest competitors.
Plus500 vs eToro
The first thing worth noting here is that the number of retail CFD accounts that lose money on eToro is somewhat lower — 67% compared to 76.4%. On the other hand, Plus500 has a larger number of Tier-1 licenses (3 compared to2) and more Tier 2 licenses (4 compared to just1). The biggest advantage of eToro is the fact that it allows social trading. Plus500 CFD trading does sound like a great feature, but it’s available on eToro, as well.
Plus500 vs IG
Across the board, IG seems like a superior platform. It offers more research and education opportunities, but this is not the platform’s only advantage. IG’s mobile trading app provides social trading (copy-trading feature) and offers discounts for active traders. IG also has a higher number of Tier-1 licenses (6 compared to Plus500’s 4). On the other hand, Plus500 has a lower minimum initial deposit requirement.
Plus500 vs Trading212
As mentioned above in our Plus500 CFD review, this broker offers contracts for differences exclusively. On Trading212, CFD is just one of the options available. The platform acts mainly as a traditional stock broker, allowing its users to own stocks that they buy directly. Plus500 has more Tier-1 licenses than Trading 212, though.
Plus500 vs Robinhood
The first thing worth mentioning is that Robinhood is US-based and US-oriented, which makes it preferable for American investors. Since CFDs are forbidden in the USA, Plus500 USA is not really an option. Speaking of access to the platform, the list of excluded countries on Robinhood is significantly shorter. While Robinhood has fewer Tier-1 licenses than Plus500, it requires no minimum initial deposit and charges no inactivity fee.
Plus500 is the largest CFD provider, available in more than 50 countries and in more than 30 languages. The platform is regulated by institutions like FCA, ASIC, CySec, FSCA, FSA, and MAS. This significantly adds to Plus500’s credibility but can’t guarantee you a positive trading experience, at least in terms of profits.
Being objective and responsible, we noted more than once in our Plus500 review that a high percentage of users lose money. CFD trading is risky and requires knowledge and strategy. If you decide to give it a try, make use of the risk management tools available on the platform and always invest the money you can afford to lose.
- Stop-loss order options
- No hidden fees
- Available in over 50 countries
- User-friendly interface
- Overnight funding fee
- Inactivity fee
- Lack of enhanced security measures on mobile apps
- High percentage of retail CFD accounts losing money
Can you make money on Plus500?
Although 76.4% of retail trading accounts on Plus500 lose money, it’s possible to make a profit by day trading on this platform. You should properly use the stop orders and try to learn as much as you can about the assets you’re about to trade.
Is Plus500 good for beginners?
Plus500 is a user-friendly online brokerage, but it’s mostly described as oriented towards intermediate to advanced CFD traders. The minimum deposit for trading is only $100, which also helps those who are just starting out and are uncertain of just how much they’re ready to commit.
Is Plus500 rigged?
No. The high percentage of retail account losses on Plus500 is not due to any scam. CFD trading is complex, volatile, and risky. Add this to the equation that many people enter this field underprepared, and accusations of the game being rigged are what you get.
Is Plus500 a real broker?
Plus500 is a real online brokerage regulated by a number of reputable authorities across the globe. It’s primarily regulated by the CySEC, FCA, and the Australian ASIC. New Zealand’s FMA, South African FSB, Israel Securities Authority, as well as Singapore’s MAS, also oversee Plus500’s operations.
Is Plus500 safe?
Yes, your investments on the Plus500 platform are covered by ICF and FCA money protection. Also, as already mentioned in our Plus500 review, the platform is regulated by numerous Tier-1 authorities. Nonetheless, there’s no broker in existence that can guarantee you won’t lose money, which is a claim reinforced by the high number of unsuccessful retail accounts.