Are you looking for the best Forex Brokers that are under No ESMA regulations? This may be because you’d like to understand if there are brokers that can still let you use a higher leverage?

We can help you.

Starting from August 2018, the new ESMA (European Securities and Markets Authority) came into effect.

It was hardly something new for the retail investor, as Forex brokers made sure to communicate the changes well ahead.

However, it opened the question of where to find Forex brokers with no ESMA regulation?

Are there such brokers?

Before anything, traders need to know that the new ESMA rules are meant to protect the trader. Many believe that the SNB (Swiss National Bank) dropping the 1.20 peg on the EURCHF pair in early 2015 sparked the idea.

As it turned out, the unprecedented event almost destroyed the Forex retail business. Some brokers went bust, many retail traders lost much more than the balance in their trading account, and the only solution was for brokers to cover the negative balances.

Healing took time, and authorities stepped in. Under the new ESMA rules, for instance, brokers offer negative balance protection. In plain English, the trader can’t lose more than the trading account’s balance. Not bad!

Leverage is limited too. Up to 1:30 in most cases, and higher only if the retail trader falls into the category of “professional retail traders”. Judging by the conditions needed to fit into this category, professional retail traders are probably somewhere in the lower single digits of all active traders.

In any case, the limitations aren’t bad for the trader. Aimed at protecting the trading account, they help in the money management process.

However, the drawback is that traders subject to ESMA regulation can’t make the most of their deposited funds. While the risk is lower, so is the potential return.

In the end, it is up to everyone to decide if the new ESMA regulations impacts their trading results positively or negatively. Our job here is to show what brokers to consider when you need or want to avoid ESMA regulations.

Keep in mind though, that they are subject to ESMA.

The only difference is that they manage to open the users accounts in non-European locations, thus applying the regulation from the place the account is open.

Is it possible to avoid ESMA rules?

Yes, as we have outlined briefly above, the answer here is that it may be possible to avoid ESMA rules in a couple of cases. These situations are as follows:

  • If you are a professional trader then you can avoid ESMA regulations. You will have to satisfy some quite stringent requirements in relation to your portfolio value, trading volume, or industry experience, two out of three. But, if you do, then most brokers offer accounts to professional traders that are not bound under ESMA regulation. This likely means increased leverage up to 500:1 depending on the broker, and no need for negative balance protection.
  • If you are a European retail trader residing outside the EU, then you may be able to apply to open your account in another jurisdiction which does not fall under the ESMA regulations and instead under that of the local regulatory body.

Top 10 of Best Forex Brokers No ESMA of 2020

We will talk about bonuses and the max leverage available for every broker in this top 10.

If you are residing in a country overseen by ESMA, the max leverage available will be always 30:1 and there won’t be any deposit bonuses offered. 

Here’s our ranking:

1. IC Markets

With a mission to provide traders the lowest spreads possible, IC Markets is one of the Forex brokers not affected by ESMA. With superior technology like DOM (Depth Of Market) and ladder trading, this Australian broker has an unrivaled customer service seven days a week. Regulated by the ASIC and offering three trading platforms, IC Markets is one of the preferred choices among retail traders in Australia and not only.

They are also regulated by the FSA in the Seychelles and this can offer you as much as 500:1 trading leverage as a retail No ESMA trader. Added to that, a major attraction is they offer very competitive spreads on trading from 0.1 pips on forex. This makes them a top choice for forex trading through MT4, MT5, cTrader, and Webtrader that are all available.

  • Regulations: ASIC
  • Minimum deposit: $200
  • Platforms: MT4, MT5, cTrader
  • InvestinGoal rank: 4.8/5

74-89 % of retail CFD accounts lose money

2. AvaTrade

With over eleven years experience in online trading, AvaTrade offers access to more than 250 instruments to trade. It fits the category of a Forex broker without ESMA and judging by its popularity among retail Forex traders, AvaTrade has all the chances to be one of the most relevant players in the future online trading market. Beyond Europe, they are regulated by  ASIC, the FSCA, and the FSC in the British Virgin Islands so there are options available.

If you do manage to register with Avatrade under the FSC regulation then 400:1 leverage will be available with fixed spread trading throughout starting from 1.3 pips. You will also have access to trade through any of the well-trusted MT4, MT5, or WebTrader platforms and an attractively low $100 minimum deposit to get started.

  • Regulations: SCB, FCA, FSB, CySEC, DFSA
  • Minimum deposit: $500
  • Platforms: MT4, MT5, cTrader
  • InvestinGoal rank: 4.5/5

71% of retail CFD accounts lose money

3. Admiral Markets

With a global presence and flexible trading accounts, Admiral Markets evolved in time into one of the most trusted brokers in the industry. Regulated all over the world and MiFID II compliant, this is one of the top non ESMA Forex brokers to consider when opening a trading account.This level of trust that you can feel as a trader is bolstered by the broker regulation coming from both the FCA, and ASIC. If you are regulated under the ASIC side of the broker, you will have access to as much as 500:1 leverage for trading in the huge range of more than 4,000 assets available.

These assets include all the usual markets as well as bonds, ETFs, and cryptocurrency and the spread starts from 0 pips with a Prime account, or 0.5 pips with a standard account and a great value minimum deposit of $100 across all three account types with trading available through MT4, MT5, or Webtrader trading platforms.

  • Regulations: CySEC, ASIC, EFSA, FCA
  • Minimum deposit: $200
  • Platforms: MT4, MT5, cTrader
  • InvestinGoal rank: 4.2/5

84% of retail CFD accounts lose money

4. XM

A regulated broker offering unlimited video tutorials to educate its traders, XM also has activities all over Europe and Australia. One of the giant powerhouses in the industry, XM is a market maker known for its fair conditions offered to traders and vast experience in an ever-changing industry like online trading. They are also regulated by both ASIC and the IFSC in Belize which can help in providing favorable conditions for you to trade under with trust.

The XM CySEC leverage still provides just 30:1 leverage, but, under ASIC this increases to 500:1, or under the IFSC this improves even further to 888:1. However, leverage also depends on the financial instrument traded. This means you can have total flexibility to trade as much as possible with XM in certain areas. There is also a number of account types to choose from and a minimum deposit of just $5 for their micro account ensures that every trader is provided for including beginners.

  • Regulations: ASIC, CySEC, IFSC
  • Minimum deposit: $5
  • Platforms: MT4, MT5
  • InvestinGoal rank: 4/5

69.75% of retail CFD accounts lose money

5. FBS

With a wide range of global payment systems and offering cent accounts too, FBS also allows any expert advisor or trading robot. With leverage up to 3000:1 and no requotes, FBS competes successfully in the online retail trading market as one of the bigger names. Since they also boast IFSC regulation, you do have the ability as a trader to access a huge maximum leverage that can really appeal to high volume or experienced forex traders in the business.

Not all for the big traders though, FBS offers a great infrastructure for new traders and a super low $1 minimum deposit as well as many contests, deposit bonuses, welcome bonuses, rebates, and more to keep you trading well. All of these elements are available if you can register with the broker under IFSC regulations.

  • Regulations: IFSC, CySEC
  • Minimum deposit: $1
  • Platforms: MT4, MT5
  • InvestinGoal rank: 3.9/5

74-89% of retail CFD accounts lose money

6. AxiTrader

AxiTrader is another well trusted, no ESMA broker founded in 2007. The Australian broker has many years of experience and the backing of parent company AxiCorp that has helped build a strong bond between themselves and traders. They are well-regulated by ASIC and provide trading opportunities across many markets including 140 CFDs and more than 60 Forex pairs.

AxiTrader make a maximum leverage of as much as 400:1 available to those who can register under their ASIC regulations. This can help in attracting big traders though they also care about new traders and are popular for their low spread starting from 0 pips and a zero minimum deposit amount that is in place. All of these factors mean that while they are not one of the industry giants, they are still a great choice for all types of traders looking for a No ESMA broker.

  • Regulations: ASIC, FCA
  • Minimum deposit: $200
  • Platforms: MT4
  • InvestinGoal rank: 4.3/5

74% of retail CFD accounts lose money

7. FxPro

FxPro is one of the largest Forex brokers. ESMA didn’t come as a surprise, as they adapted swiftly and are commited to responsible investing. FxPro offers four trading platforms (mt4, mt5, cTrader, and Edge), along with 24/5 multilingual support for its customers. As regards options for traders the broker are also regulated by the FSCA, and the SCB of the Bahamas which provides for more leniency. Under SCB regulation you can access a maximum leverage of 500:1 on forex if you can register here.

There are many points that can attract you to trade with FxPro. Not least of this is the fact they have won dozens of industry awards, more than 60. They also boast a great value minimum deposit starting at only $100 with a 0 pips spread on forex starting point. Something for everyone.

  • Regulations: SCB, FCA, FSB, CySEC
  • Minimum deposit: $100
  • Platforms: MT4, MT5, cTrader
  • IG rank: 4.5/5

79% of retail CFD accounts lose money

8. OctaFX

Currently offering a 50% bonus on deposit, OctaFX broker also compensates the account balance to zero, meaning it offers protection against negative balance. OctaFX has gained trust as a reputed broker in the industry and traders from all over the world enjoy the low spreads and fast execution offered. This maximum leverage that you can attain through trading with OctaFX is currently 500:1 on forex.

OctaFX boasts an excellent value minimum deposit of just $100 making them accessible to all levels of trader and particularly popular for those in the Asian market. They currently offer 28 currency pairs and other assets for trading and you can trade with fixed spreads from 2 pips or floating spreads from 0.4 pips depending on your needs. This flexibility is another point which keeps OctaFX at the head of the industry.


  • Regulations: FCA
  • Minimum deposit: $5
  • Platforms: MT4, MT5, cTrader
  • InvestinGoal rank: 4/5

74-89% of retail CFD accounts lose money

9. RoboForex

With the possibility of opening trading accounts in six different currencies (Bitcoin included), RoboForex also offers micro-accounts with the minimum trading volume of 0.01. The broker’s wide accounts range (six different types) attracts many traders, from rookie to veteran ones. They are attracted not only by this great value but also due to the fact they can potentially access leverage of 2000:1. New traders can get more great value with a minimum deposit of only $10 on 3 of the 5 account types offered.

Beyond this, traders with this no ESMA broker also have the chance to earn rebates worldwide while welcome bonuses are offered to those outside the EU. RoboForex also boasts a top proprietary copy trading platform for those who are into copytrading and a top value spread starting from 0 pips on forex markets.

  • Regulations: CySEC, ISFC
  • Minimum deposit: No
  • Platforms: MT4, MT5, cTrader, rTrader, RoboForex Terminals
  • InvestinGoal rank: 3.9/5

74-89% of retail CFD accounts lose money

10. Fibo Group

One of the oldest and most experienced brokerage houses, Fibo Group offers over sixty currency pairs to trade. It runs a global operation with offices in multiple continents, having something to give to each type of trader. Swing traders, scalpers and investors alike are welcome to open an account with Fibo Group. Although they are headquartered in Vienna, Austria, the broker are also regulated by the FSC. This opens up more flexible options for traders including a leverage that can reach 1000:1 under FSC regulation.

New and experienced traders alike may also be attracted by the accessible $50 minimum deposit on all accounts with the broker. This fits well with another great attraction of the very low spreads starting from 0 pips that the Fibo Group offer to traders.

  • Regulations: CySEC
  • Minimum deposit: €100
  • Platforms: MT4, MT5
  • InvestinGoal rank: 4.5/5

66% of retail CFD accounts lose money