TradeStation is a platform developer and a financial brokerage company that is owned and operated by Monex Group Inc., a company based in Japan under the Financial Services Agency regulation. TradeStation was launched in the year 1982 as Omega Research until its recent acquisition by the Monex Group Inc. and operates as a separate financial market entity with its headquarters based in Florida, USA. TradeStation is designed as an open-end platform that can be customized and redeveloped according to a different trader or broker requirements. TradeStation offers access to the global financial markets by connecting traders to various stock exchanges and liquidity providers for a comprehensive coverage of the financial instruments across the world.
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TradeStation Regulation, Operating Licenses & Investor Protection
TradeStation has its offices in the US, the UK, and Japan, which are three of the largest economic superpowers in the international financial markets. TradeStation was a member of the New York Stock Exchange before it was eventually acquired by the Japanese Monex Group Inc. TradeStation is currently regulated by the CFTC and the NFA of the US, the FCA of the UK, and the FSA of Japan. Under the CFTC and NFA guidelines, the broker is required to satisfy several trading rules to ensure that the traders from the US are protected against market eventualities. The FSA of the UK, on the contrary, does not have any trading restrictions and is considered as one of the top regulators in the market. As per its regulatory licenses, TradeStation is required to adhere to the rules and regulations imposed by the regulatory agencies for a particular country. For example, the NFA and CFTC rules state that TradeStation has to offer a lower leverage of 1:50 for Forex traders, along with other trade restrictions such as no hedging and scalping. The FCA does not impose any such trading restrictions, and is even open to the idea of new and exotic financial products such as spread betting and binary options trading. The NFA of the US and the FSA of Japan also prevents its citizens from investing with overseas or international Forex brokers, which is done to prevent its citizens from financial scams and consumer abuse. On the downside, preventing traders from investing in international Forex companies will decrease the competitive nature of the Forex market, which may prevent traders from choosing a broker according to their trading preferences. However, a valid US regulatory license, along with a European regulatory passport under the European Economic Area (EEA) agreement (courtesy of the FCA regulation), does make TradeStation one of the safest Forex brokers on the planet. The European license allows TradeStation to cater to all countries in the European Union and is regulated by the European Markets in Financial Instruments Derivatives (MiFID) that are designed to protect European traders from broker irregularities. The broker does work in the best interests of their clients, but TradeStation is not entirely free from criticisms or sanctions. The CFTC recently fined the company for its pricing policies, spreads, and the reliability of the platform, which led to a considerable amount of penalty and regulatory warnings. Traders can receive additional protection from insurance schemes such as the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) from the FCA (UK), and additional insurance policies from SIPC and Lloyds for the protection of client funds from broker insolvency issues. Customer deposits are held in segregated accounts and audited by independent certified auditors to ensure that the broker is transparent in its financial operations. Therefore, it is safe to assume that a trader can guarantee the safety of his/her investments under the watchful eyes of the NFA, the CFTC, the FCA, and the FSA.
TradeStation Trading Platform & Mobile Access
TradeStation is one of the largest platform developers in the market that gives access to some of the most varied range of stocks, indices, commodities, options, futures, Forex, bonds, ETFs, and other leading financial products across the globe. TradeStation is adopted by several large Forex brokers in the industry, and due to its open-ended customization platform built on the proprietary EasyLanguage programming module; independent third-party service providers and brokers are free to customize the platform according to individual broker preferences. TradeStation mobile trading platforms such as the ones designed for the iOS and Android, also provide exclusive mobile trading access for TradeStation mobile clients through their dedicated trading accounts. Mobile traders may also use the web trading interface, which is a standalone browser-based platform that is compatible with both desktop and mobile operating systems. All TradeStation trading platforms have unique features, indicators, charting options, and more than 48 years of past data for individual markets, which allow traders to perform a comprehensive analysis of their preferred financial assets. There are few issues with the performance and reliability of the TradeStation, mainly due to the frequent crashes and incorrect trade orders. TradeStation clients might also experience ghost orders that are in no way related to their trading accounts, which may result in massive drawdowns. The CFTC has recently penalized the company for their platform errors, which has made the company to sit up and take notice of their platform flaws. We would be careful while trading with TradeStation until all the platform errors are brought under control.
Minimum Requirements For A TradeStation Account, Costs, & Leverage
The minimum deposit for a TradeStation account at all of their international brokerages is $5000, which is incredibly more expensive than an average Forex trading account. The maximum leverage is limited to 1:100 for international traders, while traders from the US can only utilize a maximum leverage of 1:50. Forex spreads on major currency pairs range between 1 to 3 pips, which is the average spread for market maker accounts. Unfortunately, you cannot enjoy zero TradeStation spread due to the absence of an ECN account option, as all orders are transacted through the market maker access protocol. Although the company does connect traders directly to stock exchanges for equities trading, Forex traders and investors in CFDs do get access only to the market maker protocol, which does come with a certain amount of conflict of interest. TradeStation might not be the best option for traders in the market, owing to the significant capital requirements and the lack of an ECN account option. There are also other drawbacks such as issues with platform performance, lower leverage, and the severely limited payment options. Deposits and withdrawals can only be made through wire transfers or card payments, as the broker does not accept e-wallet payments or payments through online banks or payment processors. There is even a monthly maintenance fee of $95 if you do not meet the desired requirements of the broker, which may eat into your trading capital rather quickly. Therefore, you might be forced into overtrading or taking risks to maintain the minimum capital requirements. If you are looking for better alternatives, we provide you with an excellent list of recommended Forex trading companies that have the best trading conditions, lower capital requirements, and highly reliable trading platforms. Our recommendations include regulated FX brokers that not only provide you with a safe and secure trading account, but also ensure that your investments are safe for the long term.