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Best STP Forex Brokers

Marcus Taylor

Written by Marcus Taylor

September 08, 2022

What is Straight Through Processing (STP) and Why is it Significant?

Newcomers to compare forex brokers and CFDs trading may well have come across the terms Market Maker and Straight Through Processing (STP) in relation to how brokers provide price quotes on the tradable markets they offer. What does STP mean and what its significance to traders when it comes to either choosing a broker or the type of account, with brokers that offer different price quote options to their clients.

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. Between 65% and 82% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Best Straight Through Processing (STP) Forex Brokers

Here are the best straight through processing (STP) forex brokers.

  • IG
    - 9.7/10 Overall
  • Saxo Bank - 9.5/10 Overall
  • Interactive Brokers - 9.2/10 Overall
  • TD Ameritrade - 8.9/10 Overall
  • XTB - 8.7/10 Overall
  • eToro - 8.6/10 Overall
  • Swissquote - 8.5/10 Overall
  • FXCM - 8.3/10 Overall
  • IC Markets - 8/10 Overall
Overall Rating
9.7 / 10
Minimum Initial Deposit
£250.00
Trust Score
Trust Score is a numerical rating (from 1 - 99) that represents a broker's overall trust.close
Highly Trusted
Cost & Fundingexpand_moreexpand_less
Average Spread EUR/USD - Standard0.86 (September 2022)
All-in Cost EUR/USD - Active0.5957 (September 2022)
PayPal (Deposit/Withdraw)Yes
Skrill (Deposit/Withdraw)No
Visa/Mastercard (Credit/Debit)Yes
Regulationexpand_moreexpand_less
Year Founded1974
Publicly Traded (Listed)Yes
BankYes
Tier-1 Licenses7
Tier-2 Licenses2
Investment Optionsexpand_moreexpand_less
Forex TradingNo
Mobile Trading - Forex or CFDsYes
Tradeable Symbols (Total)19537
Forex Pairs (Total)100
BitcoinYes
Trading Platformsexpand_moreexpand_less
Virtual Trading (Demo)Yes
MetaTrader 4 (MT4)Yes
MetaTrader 5 (MT5)No
Proprietary PlatformYes
Social Trading / Copy TradingYes
Charting - Indicators / Studies (Total)33
Apps & Toolsexpand_moreexpand_less
Android AppYes
Apple iOS AppYes
Has Education - Forex or CFDsYes
Daily Market CommentaryYes
Forex News (Top-Tier Sources)Yes
Economic CalendarYes


Overall Rating
9.5 / 10
Minimum Initial Deposit
€2,000
Trust Score
Trust Score is a numerical rating (from 1 - 99) that represents a broker's overall trust.close
Highly Trusted
Cost & Fundingexpand_moreexpand_less
Average Spread EUR/USD - Standard0.9 (September 2022)
All-in Cost EUR/USD - Active0.7 (September 2022)
PayPal (Deposit/Withdraw)No
Skrill (Deposit/Withdraw)No
Visa/Mastercard (Credit/Debit)Yes
Regulationexpand_moreexpand_less
Year Founded1992
Publicly Traded (Listed)No
BankYes
Tier-1 Licenses6
Tier-2 Licenses1
Investment Optionsexpand_moreexpand_less
Forex TradingNo
Mobile Trading - Forex or CFDsYes
Tradeable Symbols (Total)60000
Forex Pairs (Total)190
BitcoinYes
Trading Platformsexpand_moreexpand_less
Virtual Trading (Demo)Yes
MetaTrader 4 (MT4)No
MetaTrader 5 (MT5)No
Proprietary PlatformYes
Social Trading / Copy TradingYes
Charting - Indicators / Studies (Total)62
Apps & Toolsexpand_moreexpand_less
Android AppYes
Apple iOS AppYes
Has Education - Forex or CFDsYes
Daily Market CommentaryYes
Forex News (Top-Tier Sources)Yes
Economic CalendarYes


Overall Rating
9.2 / 10
Minimum Initial Deposit
$0
Trust Score
Trust Score is a numerical rating (from 1 - 99) that represents a broker's overall trust.close
Highly Trusted
Cost & Fundingexpand_moreexpand_less
Average Spread EUR/USD - Standard0.6 (Aug 2022)
All-in Cost EUR/USD - Active0.6 (Aug 2022)
PayPal (Deposit/Withdraw)No
Skrill (Deposit/Withdraw)No
Visa/Mastercard (Credit/Debit)No
Regulationexpand_moreexpand_less
Year Founded1977
Publicly Traded (Listed)Yes
BankNo
Tier-1 Licenses8
Tier-2 Licenses1
Investment Optionsexpand_moreexpand_less
Forex TradingNo
Mobile Trading - Forex or CFDsYes
Tradeable Symbols (Total)8500
Forex Pairs (Total)90
BitcoinYes
Trading Platformsexpand_moreexpand_less
Virtual Trading (Demo)Yes
MetaTrader 4 (MT4)No
MetaTrader 5 (MT5)No
Proprietary PlatformYes
Social Trading / Copy TradingNo
Charting - Indicators / Studies (Total)128
Apps & Toolsexpand_moreexpand_less
Android AppYes
Apple iOS AppYes
Has Education - Forex or CFDsYes
Daily Market CommentaryYes
Forex News (Top-Tier Sources)Yes
Economic CalendarYes


Overall Rating
8.9 / 10
Minimum Initial Deposit
$0
Trust Score
Trust Score is a numerical rating (from 1 - 99) that represents a broker's overall trust.close
Highly Trusted
Cost & Fundingexpand_moreexpand_less
Average Spread EUR/USD - Standard1.25 pips (September 2022)
All-in Cost EUR/USD - Active1.25 pips (September 2022)
PayPal (Deposit/Withdraw)No
Skrill (Deposit/Withdraw)No
Visa/Mastercard (Credit/Debit)No
Regulationexpand_moreexpand_less
Year Founded1955
Publicly Traded (Listed)Yes
BankYes
Tier-1 Licenses4
Tier-2 Licenses0
Investment Optionsexpand_moreexpand_less
Forex TradingYes
Mobile Trading - Forex or CFDsYes
Tradeable Symbols (Total)0
Forex Pairs (Total)73
BitcoinYes
Trading Platformsexpand_moreexpand_less
Virtual Trading (Demo)Yes
MetaTrader 4 (MT4)No
MetaTrader 5 (MT5)No
Proprietary PlatformYes
Social Trading / Copy TradingNo
Charting - Indicators / Studies (Total)360
Apps & Toolsexpand_moreexpand_less
Android AppYes
Apple iOS AppYes
Has Education - Forex or CFDsYes
Daily Market CommentaryYes
Forex News (Top-Tier Sources)Yes
Economic CalendarYes


Overall Rating
8.7 / 10
Minimum Initial Deposit
$0
Trust Score
Trust Score is a numerical rating (from 1 - 99) that represents a broker's overall trust.close
Highly Trusted
Cost & Fundingexpand_moreexpand_less
Average Spread EUR/USD - Standard1.07 (Q3 2022)
All-in Cost EUR/USD - Active1.04 (Q3 2022)
PayPal (Deposit/Withdraw)Yes
Skrill (Deposit/Withdraw)Yes
Visa/Mastercard (Credit/Debit)Yes
Regulationexpand_moreexpand_less
Year Founded2002
Publicly Traded (Listed)Yes
BankNo
Tier-1 Licenses1
Tier-2 Licenses3
Investment Optionsexpand_moreexpand_less
Forex TradingNo
Mobile Trading - Forex or CFDsYes
Tradeable Symbols (Total)12000
Forex Pairs (Total)49
BitcoinYes
Trading Platformsexpand_moreexpand_less
Virtual Trading (Demo)Yes
MetaTrader 4 (MT4)Yes
MetaTrader 5 (MT5)No
Proprietary PlatformYes
Social Trading / Copy TradingYes
Charting - Indicators / Studies (Total)39
Apps & Toolsexpand_moreexpand_less
Android AppYes
Apple iOS AppYes
Has Education - Forex or CFDsYes
Daily Market CommentaryYes
Forex News (Top-Tier Sources)Yes
Economic CalendarYes


Overall Rating
8.6 / 10
Minimum Initial Deposit
$10-$10,000
Trust Score
Trust Score is a numerical rating (from 1 - 99) that represents a broker's overall trust.close
Highly Trusted
Cost & Fundingexpand_moreexpand_less
Average Spread EUR/USD - Standard1 (August 2021)
All-in Cost EUR/USD - ActiveN/A
PayPal (Deposit/Withdraw)Yes
Skrill (Deposit/Withdraw)Yes
Visa/Mastercard (Credit/Debit)Yes
Regulationexpand_moreexpand_less
Year Founded2007
Publicly Traded (Listed)No
BankNo
Tier-1 Licenses2
Tier-2 Licenses1
Investment Optionsexpand_moreexpand_less
Forex TradingNo
Mobile Trading - Forex or CFDsYes
Tradeable Symbols (Total)3458
Forex Pairs (Total)49
BitcoinYes
Trading Platformsexpand_moreexpand_less
Virtual Trading (Demo)Yes
MetaTrader 4 (MT4)No
MetaTrader 5 (MT5)No
Proprietary PlatformYes
Social Trading / Copy TradingYes
Charting - Indicators / Studies (Total)66
Apps & Toolsexpand_moreexpand_less
Android AppYes
Apple iOS AppYes
Has Education - Forex or CFDsYes
Daily Market CommentaryYes
Forex News (Top-Tier Sources)No
Economic CalendarYes


Overall Rating
8.5 / 10
Minimum Initial Deposit
$1000
Trust Score
Trust Score is a numerical rating (from 1 - 99) that represents a broker's overall trust.close
Highly Trusted
Cost & Fundingexpand_moreexpand_less
Average Spread EUR/USD - StandardN/A
All-in Cost EUR/USD - ActiveN/A
PayPal (Deposit/Withdraw)Yes
Skrill (Deposit/Withdraw)Yes
Visa/Mastercard (Credit/Debit)Yes
Regulationexpand_moreexpand_less
Year Founded1996
Publicly Traded (Listed)Yes
BankYes
Tier-1 Licenses4
Tier-2 Licenses1
Investment Optionsexpand_moreexpand_less
Forex TradingNo
Mobile Trading - Forex or CFDsYes
Tradeable Symbols (Total)466
Forex Pairs (Total)78
BitcoinYes
Trading Platformsexpand_moreexpand_less
Virtual Trading (Demo)Yes
MetaTrader 4 (MT4)Yes
MetaTrader 5 (MT5)Yes
Proprietary PlatformYes
Social Trading / Copy TradingYes
Charting - Indicators / Studies (Total)49
Apps & Toolsexpand_moreexpand_less
Android AppYes
Apple iOS AppYes
Has Education - Forex or CFDsYes
Daily Market CommentaryYes
Forex News (Top-Tier Sources)Yes
Economic CalendarYes


Overall Rating
8.3 / 10
Minimum Initial Deposit
Starts from $50
Trust Score
Trust Score is a numerical rating (from 1 - 99) that represents a broker's overall trust.close
Highly Trusted
Cost & Fundingexpand_moreexpand_less
Average Spread EUR/USD - Standard1.38 (Q2 2022)
All-in Cost EUR/USD - Active1.38 (Q2 2022)
PayPal (Deposit/Withdraw)No
Skrill (Deposit/Withdraw)Yes
Visa/Mastercard (Credit/Debit)Yes
Regulationexpand_moreexpand_less
Year Founded1999
Publicly Traded (Listed)Yes
BankNo
Tier-1 Licenses3
Tier-2 Licenses3
Investment Optionsexpand_moreexpand_less
Forex TradingNo
Mobile Trading - Forex or CFDsYes
Tradeable Symbols (Total)441
Forex Pairs (Total)44
BitcoinYes
Trading Platformsexpand_moreexpand_less
Virtual Trading (Demo)Yes
MetaTrader 4 (MT4)Yes
MetaTrader 5 (MT5)No
Proprietary PlatformYes
Social Trading / Copy TradingYes
Charting - Indicators / Studies (Total)57
Apps & Toolsexpand_moreexpand_less
Android AppYes
Apple iOS AppYes
Has Education - Forex or CFDsYes
Daily Market CommentaryYes
Forex News (Top-Tier Sources)Yes
Economic CalendarYes


Overall Rating
8 / 10
Minimum Initial Deposit
$200
Trust Score
Trust Score is a numerical rating (from 1 - 99) that represents a broker's overall trust.close
Trusted
Cost & Fundingexpand_moreexpand_less
Average Spread EUR/USD - Standard0.62 (August 2021)
All-in Cost EUR/USD - Active0.62 (August 2021)
PayPal (Deposit/Withdraw)Yes
Skrill (Deposit/Withdraw)Yes
Visa/Mastercard (Credit/Debit)Yes
Regulationexpand_moreexpand_less
Year Founded2007
Publicly Traded (Listed)No
BankNo
Tier-1 Licenses1
Tier-2 Licenses1
Investment Optionsexpand_moreexpand_less
Forex TradingNo
Mobile Trading - Forex or CFDsYes
Tradeable Symbols (Total)3583
Forex Pairs (Total)61
BitcoinYes
Trading Platformsexpand_moreexpand_less
Virtual Trading (Demo)Yes
MetaTrader 4 (MT4)Yes
MetaTrader 5 (MT5)Yes
Proprietary PlatformNo
Social Trading / Copy TradingYes
Charting - Indicators / Studies (Total)30
Apps & Toolsexpand_moreexpand_less
Android AppYes
Apple iOS AppYes
Has Education - Forex or CFDsYes
Daily Market CommentaryYes
Forex News (Top-Tier Sources)Yes
Economic CalendarYes


Understanding the significance of STP is best achieved within the context of how it differs from a Market Maker price quoting system. As such, it makes sense to explain both and their advantages and disadvantages.

Price Quotes in CFDs Trading

When a trader takes a CFD position they, in theory, buy a financial instrument at a close approximation to its present market price. There is a buy and a sell price, referred to as the bid and ask price and the small difference between the two is the "spread". This is where the entity on the other side of a trade makes their money.

However, the reality is that the situation is not quite as simple as that. There are actually two main ways in which different brokers arrive at the price offered on CFD markets that can be traded on their platforms & Market Maker and STP. Each has pluses and minuses for traders.

Market Makers

Some CFD brokers have a Market Maker quoting model, which can also be referred to as a Dealing Desk (DD). In this model, it is the broker themselves that offer traders the bid and ask prices on a given CFD. The pricing provided should closely reflect the actual market price though can, in theory, slightly diverge. By how much a MM broker's pricing can differ from the underlying market is determined by their financial regulator.

Generally, MM brokers will try to offset the trading position of one client against that of the other, under the presumption that there will be long and short trades held simultaneously by different traders using the broker. If this is not possible the next recourse is to hedge the risk with an external liquidity provider. However, the most important quality of taking a trading position with a MM broker is that the broker takes the other side of the trade. This means that if the trade goes in favour of the trader, the MM broker loses it, though in theory they will have hedged this loss.

Many traders consider trading with MM brokers to be an inherent conflict of interest and generally undesirable. This is a bit of a misconception and most MM brokers, particularly those under the regulatory regime of a strong regulator such as the UK's Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), offer a fair market price. There are also a number of advantages for traders which result from the greater control that MM brokers have. These include:

However, there are also disadvantages such as:

  • The potential for a conflict of interest.
  • Spreads are generally wider in comparison to STP broker quotes.
  • Slippage and requotes are more common.
  • Bigger positions may be declined if the broker doesn't have the liquidity to take on the risk.

Straight Through Processing (STP)

In its wider application in financial services, STP means information electronically processed by one party to begin a settlement process does not need to be re-entered by subsequent recipients of that information along the sequence of events.

Within the specific context of online trading, STP price quoting means that the broker, unlike in the case of a MM broker, does not take the opposite side of their clients' trades. The broker facilitates the matching of the trade position with a counter-party in market, which is made up by liquidity providers and other financial institutions. The bid and ask prices quoted to traders are those of the main market.

In an STP brokerage model it makes no difference to the broker whether a trader wins or loses a trading position. The broker makes its money purely from commission charged on each trade, which reassures many traders of transparency and a lack of any potential conflict of interest. The main advantages to the trader of trading with an STP broker are:

  • No potential for a conflict of interest with the broker.
  • Tighter spreads.
  • Requotes and slippage rare.
  • Larger trade positions can be taken.

Disadvantages include:

  • Micro-lots are not available so significantly larger trading capital is required for effective risk management.
  • Spreads are less consistent and may widen considerably during particularly volatile periods on a financial market.
  • The broker charges commission so each trade placed is more expensive.

Should I choose a Market Maker or Straight Through Processing Broker?

As is probably clear by now there is no black and white answer to this question. However, as a general rule of thumb, the lower costs and the option to trade micro-lots means that MM brokers are the better option for beginner traders who will work with less capital and take smaller positions. The advantages of STP brokers outweigh the higher cost of using them when more valuable trade positions are taken. As such they tend to be the preferred option for more experienced traders working with bigger trading accounts.

Many of the bigger brokers now offer both MM and STP trading accounts in recognition of this divergence in the benefits and drawbacks to the two models.

Which Regulated Brokers Offer STP

XMbroker that is regulated by a reputable regulator as they will be supervised and monitored to ensure that they are acting in accordance with the highest standards when it comes to their client services.

BrokerNotes.co 2022 Overall Rankings

To recap, here are our top forex brokers for 2022, sorted by Overall ranking.

Company Overall Rating Minimum Initial Deposit Average Spread EUR/USD - Standard Trust Score Trust Score Tradeable Symbols (Total) Visit Site
IG logoIG 9.7 £250.00 0.86 (September 2022) 99 Highly Trusted 19537 Visit Site
Saxo Bank logoSaxo Bank 9.5 €2,000 0.9 (September 2022) 99 Highly Trusted 60000
CMC Markets logoCMC Markets 9.4 $0 0.51 (August 2022) 99 Highly Trusted 12377
Interactive Brokers logoInteractive Brokers 9.2 $0 0.6 (Aug 2022) 99 Highly Trusted 8500
TD Ameritrade logoTD Ameritrade 8.9 $0 1.25 pips (September 2022) 99 Highly Trusted 0
FOREX.com logoFOREX.com 8.7 $100 1.0 (July 2022) 99 Highly Trusted 5500 Visit Site
XTB logoXTB 8.7 $0 1.07 (Q3 2022) 95 Highly Trusted 12000
City Index logoCity Index 8.7 £100.00 1.0 (July 2022) 99 Highly Trusted 13500
eToro logoeToro 8.6 $10-$10,000 1 (August 2021) 93 Highly Trusted 3458
Swissquote logoSwissquote 8.5 $1000 N/A 99 Highly Trusted 466
AvaTrade logoAvaTrade 8.2 $100 0.91 (Aug 2020) 93 Highly Trusted 1260
Plus500 logoPlus500 8.2 €100 0.6 (as of Aug 2018) 98 Highly Trusted 2800
FXCM logoFXCM 8.3 Starts from $50 1.38 (Q2 2022) 96 Highly Trusted 441
Admiral Markets logoAdmiral Markets 8.1 $100 0.8 (July 2021) 87 Trusted 8425
FP Markets logoFP Markets 8.3 $100 AUD 1.2 (August 2022) 86 Trusted 9956
IC Markets logoIC Markets 8 $200 0.62 (August 2021) 86 Trusted 3583
OANDA logoOANDA 8 $0 1.26 (5/22-5/27/22) 92 Highly Trusted 124
Capital.com logoCapital.com 8.1 $20 0.6 (July 2021) 77 Average Risk 6000
Markets.com logoMarkets.com 8.1 $100 1.9 (as of Oct 2019) 98 98 2179
XM Group logoXM Group 8 $5 1.6 (Aug 2020) 90 Trusted 1372
Pepperstone logoPepperstone 8 $200 0.77 (September 2022) 93 Highly Trusted 1200
FxPro logoFxPro 8 $100 1.51 (August 2020) 90 Highly Trusted 2249
Tickmill logoTickmill 7.8 $100 0.51 (August 2022) 82 Trusted 295
HYCM (Henyep) logoHYCM (Henyep) 7.7 $100 0.6 (Sept 2021) 86 Trusted 245
DooPrime logoDooPrime 7.7 $100 -1 84 Average Risk 10000
Fineco Bank logoFineco Bank 7.7 $0 N/A 92 Highly Trusted 126
HFM logoHFM 7.6 $5 1.2 (August 2021) 85 Trusted 3500
BDSwiss logoBDSwiss 7.6 $100-$5000 (depending on account type) 1.6 (08/10/22) 83 Trusted 1081
Vantage logoVantage 7.4 $50 1.22 (August 2021) 83 Trusted 257
Trading 212 logoTrading 212 7.4 EUR 10 N/A 77 Average Risk 1785
Moneta Markets logoMoneta Markets 7.3 $50 1.27 (September 2022) 71 Trusted 965
Trade Nation logoTrade Nation 7.1 $0 0.6 83 Trusted 601
ACY Securities logoACY Securities 7.2 $50 1.2 (Sept 2021) 75 Average Risk 1600
Eightcap logoEightcap 7.2 $100 N/A 87 Trusted 326
ThinkMarkets logoThinkMarkets 7.3 $250.00 N/A 86 Trusted 1674
BlackBull Markets logoBlackBull Markets 7 $0 0.827 (August 2022) 74 Average Risk 26000
VT Markets logoVT Markets 7.2 $200 1.2 (September 2021) 71 Trusted 168
easyMarkets logoeasyMarkets 7.3 $100 0.9 (as of Mar 2020) 84 Trusted 199
TMGM logoTMGM 7 $100 0.96 (July 2021) 79 Average Risk 12000
Exness logoExness 7.2 $1 0.9 (as of May 19) 74 Average Risk 112
Spreadex logoSpreadex 7.2 $0 -1 70 Average Risk 2000
IronFX logoIronFX 7.1 $50 1.2 84 Trusted 340
RoboForex (RoboMarkets) logoRoboForex (RoboMarkets) 7.1 $100 1.4 (Jan 2022) 69 High Risk 12000
Trade360 logoTrade360 7 $250 N/A 75 Average Risk 1062
AxiTrader logoAxiTrader 7 0 N/A 83 Trusted 175 Visit Site
GKFX logoGKFX 7 $0 N/A 66 High Risk 354
Vestle logoVestle 7 -1 -1 79 Average Risk 750
TeleTrade logoTeleTrade 7 $100 -1 67 High Risk 500
FXOpen logoFXOpen 7 $100 N/A 80 Trusted 87
OctaFX logoOctaFX 6.8 $25 0.6 (August 2021) 67 High Risk 80
Forex4you logoForex4you 6.9 $0 -1 62 High Risk 150
LegacyFX logoLegacyFX 6.8 $500 0 75 Average Risk 425
FXPrimus logoFXPrimus 6.8 $100 N/A 69 High Risk 140 Visit Site
Alpari logoAlpari 6.8 $20 N/A 67 High Risk 105
GBE brokers logoGBE brokers 6.7 $500 -1 69 High Risk 500
TopFX logoTopFX 6.5 Depends on payment method N/A 67 High Risk 655
ATFX logoATFX 6.6 $500 -1 70 Average Risk 150
UFX logoUFX 6.5 $100 3 (Jan 2021) 67 High Risk 619
Libertex (Forex Club) logoLibertex (Forex Club) 6.5 $10 -1 72 High Risk 300
Xtrade logoXtrade 6.5 $250 -1 80 Trusted 142
Tradeo logoTradeo 6.4 $200 -1 67 High Risk 256
View More

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About the Author

Marcus Taylor
Marcus Taylor

BrokerNotes was founded in 2014 by Marcus Taylor, founder and CEO of Venture Harbor, a venture studio in Oxford that develops innovative online tools & technology across a range of sectors.


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