Ballistic Markets Review
Ballistic Markets is a 100% Direct Market Access (DMA) broker that works on the Straight Through Protocol (STP) to connect traders directly to liquidity providers and leading exchange houses. Ballistic Markets aggregates price feeds from five different liquidity providers to offer you the best price and the tightest spreads in the market. DMA/STP brokers have no conflict of interest with their clients, as all orders are anonymous and transferred directly to the liquidity pool. Therefore, all customers’ positions are filled at market price, where the broker is rewarded through the nominal markup spread and the commission associated with each trade. Ballistic Markets does seem to be a good Forex broker that has the makings of becoming a well-known FX trading company in the global financial markets.
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Ballistic Markets Broker Location & Regulation
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Ballistic Markets is situated in the heart of the London financial district and has been operating in the Forex industry since the March of 2016. Ballistic Markets is a relatively new broker in the crowded marketplace, but the broker has made it abundantly clear that they wish to attract long-term investors, rather than enticing smaller traders in search for quick profits. Therefore, Ballistic Markets is geared towards both retail and institutional traders that are looking for a consistent and reliable broker experience.
Ballistic Markets’ offices and headquarters in the UK ensures that all regulatory responsibilities are assumed by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which is one of the main regulatory organizations in the Forex market. The FCA is also one of the premier regulators in the European Union and still, plays a vital role in the European Economic Area after the UK’s exit from the EU. The FCA stipulates various policies that require FX brokers and other non-banking financial companies to adhere to a regulatory framework that is designed in conjunction with the ECB and the European Markets in Financial Instruments Derivatives. The FCA is brilliant in its duties towards the investors, which provide advanced levels of protection against broker scams by ensuring that all regulated entities comply with the existing guidelines.
The FCA organizes routine audit of its member firms, and every regulated Forex broker is required to submit financial reports and an open track of all financial activities to ensure that there are no financial discrepancies. Furthermore, all client deposits should be held in segregated accounts and must be protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). Under the FSCS insurance scheme, clients can receive up to £48,000 in compensation if a broker is rendered insolvent without meeting its debt obligation to the clients. Ballistic Markets Regulation is certainly one of the positive attributes of the company, as FCA regulation is seen by many as a reliable and reputed regulatory authority.
What Does One Need For A Ballistic Markets Forex Account?
Ballistic Markets offer two different types of trading account. The first type of Forex account is a Self Trader account, which is aimed at traders that wish to interact directly with the Forex markets. The second type of trading account, known as a Managed account, is more oriented towards investors that want to invest in a Forex managed account without taking any risks on their own. The Managed account is administered by a team of professional traders that use the core Ballistic Markets trading accounts for tight spreads and the best market execution, which allows investors to enjoy the best investment options in the market. Ballistic Markets only charges a performance fee and does not have any other hidden costs or restrictions on deposits or withdrawals. Ballistic Markets Managed accounts have a free liquidation of assets policy, which means that investors are free to withdraw their capital without any lock-in periods.
The Self Trader account, which is more applicable for retail traders, is further divided into three different choices. The Starting account is a commission-free STP account that is available for up to a maximum deposit of £5,000. Such an account has higher spreads starting at 1.4 pips and has a maximum Ballistic Markets leverage of 1:100. Some retail traders might find the leverage to be a bit lower than other STP accounts, but the broker does provide an excellent cost incentive that promises the most competitive Ballistic Markets spreads in the market. For deposits larger than £5,000 and lower than £50,000, the broker offers a further reduction in spreads to 0.3 pips, which also involves a commission of $40 per million traded. The second choice of account is known as the Experienced account and has more or less the same conditions as the Starting account. The third option, primarily known as the Professional account, only offers an additional reduction in the commission to $30 per million traded, but this account does require a larger deposit than £50,000.
All accounts can be opened in three different base currencies, the GBP, the EUR, and the USD. Deposits and withdrawals to a trading account can only be made with a Visa/MasterCard or by making a conventional bank wire. The absence of any online e-wallet payment option is certainly a major drawback for the company, but all other trading conditions seem acceptable. The broker does not limit any trading strategies, as traders are free to scalp, hedge, or trade the news without any restrictions. The stability of a DMA account helps in ensuring that traders’ orders are sent directly to the market without any intervention from a dealing desk.
How Does The Ballistic Markets Platform Work With A DMA Account?
Ballistic Markets uses the popular MetaTrader4 terminal for all trading accounts, which are connected to the liquidity providers through STP bridges. The MT4 platform offers direct access to more than 70 different financial instruments, which include currencies, commodities, indices, and other CFDs. Ballistic Markets mobile trading platforms are available as mobile apps for the iOS, Android, and Windows devices, which works well in combination with the desktop trading terminals.
Traders can start trading the Forex markets with as little as 0.01 lots, with no maximum order size imposed on the Professional account. Since traders are connected directly to the liquidity pool, orders are filled according to the current market volatility. Therefore, it is common for the MT4 platform to induce significant slippage, but the orders go through fast and accurately. There isn’t any visible lag in the trading performance, but partial fills and slippages might not be suitable for smaller retail traders.
Contacting The Ballistic Markets Customer Support
FCA regulation does make it a priority for Ballistic Markets to have an excellent customer service channel that caters to their traders’ concerns in a professional and timely manner. Although the company is dedicated to the welfare of their clients, they do not provide any bonuses on deposits, as the broker explicitly states its intention to cater to clients for the long term. Bonuses do come with various restrictions and trading conditions, which might be against the broker’s core operating principles.
Ultimately, Ballistic Markets may not be suitable for all traders, especially since other ECN/STP brokers offer even better trading conditions with tighter spreads and lower commissions. Nevertheless, traders won’t be disappointed with the broker’s service offerings, but it might make sense to compare different Forex brokers before finalizing your decision on investing with Ballistic Markets.