Top 10 Best Forex Brokers in South Africa for 2021

logomark Filippo Ucchino calendar Last Updated: June 2021 timer 14 min read
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If you are a forex trader in South Africa looking for a broker, we are here to help.

Finding the best forex broker in South Africa can seem like a difficult task sometimes. That is why we have collected as much information as possible to help you along the way.

As a forex trader in South Africa, you will find information here on some of the top forex brokers, as well as the best forex trading platforms available and much more about the top-tier FSCA regulation provided by many brokers.

Let’s get started:

Table of contents

Is Forex Trading legal in South Africa?

This is a very common question that comes from forex traders in South Africa and around the world. In regard to the legality of South African forex trading. The answer, in short, is yes.

Forex trading is completely legal in South Africa.

In fact, forex trading in the country is well regulated by the FSCA (Formerly FSB). Through their experience and good practice in the industry, they have risen to become one of the most respected regulatory bodies in the forex market.

Beyond that, the FSCA regulation provides such a trusted experience that many non-South African traders from around the world also seek out top forex brokers regulated by the FSCA.

This is possible in just the same way it is also possible for South African forex traders to choose forex brokers who are regulated outside the country by other bodies.

How to trade forex in South Africa

The process of forex trading and starting your account with a South African forex broker is not unlike that you may find in another country.

The basic steps you should follow are to choose your broker (We have listed many of the top South African forex brokers below), provide the documents required by the broker to prove your identity and residence, and finally fund your account.

If you are depositing more than 1 million ZAR ($65,000 approx) you may need a Tax Clearance Certificate (TCC) since most of the top brokers keep their accounts outside South Africa, you would actually be sending money to another country to fund your account. This is not too difficult but does require a tax clearance if you are depositing more than that amount of money.

If the amount is smaller, then the process of funding is much easier through the Single Discretionary Allowance (SDA). This allows you to move as much as 1 Million ZAR per year abroad without the need for the same documentation. You can find more information on these regulations on the South African Reserve Bank Website.

It is worth noting that these processes are not needed if your broker has a deposit account within South Africa.

Top 10 Best Forex Brokers in South Africa

Getting into our listing of the best forex brokers in South Africa for you, the first 6 brokers we have listed for your convenience are FSCA regulated brokers, while the brokers numbered 7 to 10 are top international forex brokers who accept South African traders.

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81% of retail investor accounts lose money


FXTM is well-known as one of the best forex brokers in South Africa. To that end they have collected the award of “best broker in Africa” as recently as 2018 from International Business Magazine.

There are a total of 6 account types available through FXTM, of these, 3 are ECN and 3 are Standard. Cent and Shares Accounts are both available as well as a completely authentic demo account and an Islamic trading account on request.

The FXTM minimum deposit for forex trading starts at just $10 if you have a cent account. This is ideal for new forex traders. The minimum ECN account deposit is $200 while the Shares Account minimum deposit is $10,000. Within the accounts, both eWallet and credit card deposits are facilitated with no fee in most cases. It is important to note that ZAR deposits are not available, nor as a base currency where you can choose USD, EUR, or GBP.

Finally, spreads start from 0 pips with ECN accounts or 1.3 pips on standard account major currency pairs and while no FXTM bonus is available, a loyalty program is in place.

Rated: Excellent
Security 94
Cost 71
Trading 71
Education 80

Platforms: MT4 Dekstop, MT4 Web, MT5 Desktop, Proprietary Web Platform regulations: FCA, MIFID-ESMA, FSCA, CYSEC, FSC (Mauritius) Minimum Deposit: 10
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75.54% of retail investor accounts lose money

2. FxPro

Not only as a South African forex broker but globally, FxPro is highly recognized and decorated. They have collected more than 60 awards over the years, cementing their place as a top forex broker.

There are a total of 3 accounts available to choose from at FxPro and the minimum deposit here starts from $100 with both an extensive demo account and Islamic trading options available.

While forex trading with FxPro you will have use of a range of top trading platforms including MT4, MT5, and cTrader depending on your preference. FxPro spreads are also very competitive starting from 0 pips. A select number of assets are also available with a fixed spread through MT4.

ZAR deposits are accepted although it is not a base currency available. You can choose in this respect from USD, GBP, or EUR and FxPro deposits can be made through traditional wire transfer, major credit cards, or eWallet methods.

You will be pleased to learn that although an FxPro bonus is not available, there are typically no deposit fees charged at all from this broker.

Rated: Excellent
Security 95
Cost 58
Trading 76
Education 83

Platforms: cTrader desktop, cTrader web, MT4 Dekstop, MT4 Web, MT5 Desktop, MT5 Web, MAC Platforms regulations: FCA, MIFID-ESMA, FSCA, CYSEC, Offshore Minimum Deposit: 100
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72.68% of retail investor accounts lose money

3. HotForex

HotForex is the next choice in our selection of top South African forex brokers. They have a very low and accessible minimum deposit as well as an extensive free forex education infrastructure for you development as a trader.

There are a total of 5 accounts available here that range through the Micro Account, Premium, Zero Spread, Auto, and Copy Trading accounts. The minimum deposits on these accounts starts from just $5 (R70) with the HotForex Micro Account and runs through $100 (R1400), and $200 (R2800) respectively for the accounts mentioned. A CopyTrading account requires $100 to copy others, or $300 to be copied.

As well as both demo accounts and Islamic trading being available, the broker facilitates base currencies as ZAR, USD, EUR, GBP, and more. All of this can be available with a spread from 0 pips ad funding from wire transfer, credit cards, or eWallet methods that are typically fee-free.

As HotForex Bonus options, cash rebates, higher leverage, and a 100% credit bonus are sometimes available alongside a variety of potentially rewarding trading contests which reward cash and other types of prizes to you.

Rated: Excellent
Security 94
Cost 86
Trading 69
Education 70

Platforms: MT4 Dekstop, MT4 Web, MT5 Desktop, MT5 Web regulations: MIFID-ESMA, CYSEC, Offshore, FSC (Mauritius) Minimum Deposit: 5
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72% of retail investor accounts lose money

4. Plus500

Plus500 is another top CFD provider in South Africa and around the world. In fact, they are perfect for CFD trading and offer most of their features to traders without any fee. This includes deposits which are often completely free.

With Plus500 there is one account type available and with that, the minimum deposit is $100. For those traders who may like to try before depositing then you can access a complete Plus500 demo account.

For you as a South African trader the ZAR is available as a base currency as well as several other major global currencies and your account funding can be completed using wire transfer, credit card, or a range of eWallets.

Plus500 offers traders the use of their own proprietary trading platform that facilitates both floating and fixed spreads.

This CFD platform is typically considered one of the top choices for those starting out in the industry thanks to a low minimum deposit, and easy to use trading platform along with range of assets available.

Rated: Excellent
Security 96
Cost 70
Trading 66
Education 37

Platforms: Proprietary Web Platform regulations: MAS, FCA, MIFID-ESMA, ASIC, FMA, CYSEC, ISA, Offshore Minimum Deposit: 100
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76% of retail CFD accounts lose money

5. IG Markets

IG Markets frankly has a huge and tremendous selection of assets available, particularly CFDs with more than 16,000 to choose from. This makes it a top choice for South African forex trading and around the world.

There is only 1 account choice available though this can be opened as a demo account or to allow for Islamic trading also. As a forex trader you can select to open an account with IG Markets South Africa or IG Markets International. The difference here being that many more assets are available for trading if you go with the international side.

Spread start from a really competitive 0.7 pips on trading through both the IG Markets proprietary trading platform or MT4. For both platforms the minimum deposit is $300 and only Euro or GBP are accepted.

These can be credited through wire transfer, credit card, or eWallet deposit methods, and while neither a ZAR base currency or IG Markets bonus are available, deposits are fee-free for the most part.

Rated: Excellent
Security 98
Cost 62
Trading 100
Education 84

Platforms: Proprietary Web Platform, MAC Platforms regulations: FSA, MAS, FINMA, FCA, CFTC, MIFID-ESMA, ASIC, FMA, FSCA, DFSA Minimum Deposit: 300
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79% of retail investor accounts lose money

6. AvaTrade

AvaTrade is a highly-regulated fx broker with a global reputation and one of the few in our listing that offers trader fixed spreads only. These fixed spread offerings start from a very competitive 1.3pips and the minimum deposit of just $100 also represents great value for forex traders in South Africa looking to get a start in the sector.

Account availability includes a retail account, an options trading account, and a spread betting account while trading platform availability extends to the choice of MT4, MT5, or Webtrader if you are trading forex. .

Both a fully functioning demo account and a fully compliant Islamic trading account are available where needed and although a ZAR base currency is not available, USD, EUR, and GBP all are through a wire transfer, major credit card deposit, or eWallet. All of the methods and currency listed are typically fee-free also.

Right not unfortunately ZAR deposits through AvaTrade are not catered for and nor is an AvaTrade bonus although they have many more great things to offer.

Rated: Excellent
Security 94
Cost 78
Trading 75
Education 72

Platforms: Mirror Trader, ZuluTrade, MT4 Web, MT5 Web, Proprietary Web Platform, MAC Platforms regulations: FSA, MIFID-ESMA, ASIC, IIROC, FSCA, Offshore, FSC (British) Minimum Deposit: 100
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73.57% of retail investor accounts lose money

7. XM

XM is an exceptionally well-regulated broker and being overseen by regulatory bodies like CySEC, IFSC, and ASIC have helped them craft a trusted reputation among traders.

Here there are a total of 4 account types for you to choose from. These are, the Micro, Standard, Ultra Low, and Shares accounts. Minimum deposits on these start from just $5 for the Micro, $50 for the Ultra Low, and $10,000 for the Shares account.

Spreads from as low as 0 pips are available through the MT4 and MT5 trading platforms and the ZAR is available as a base currency alongside the EUR, USD, GBP, and more although it is not available with the Shares or Ultra Low account options. An important aspect of trading is a demo account and this is also available to try, as is an XM Islamic account.

Deposits can be made through bank wire transfers, major credit cards, or a selection of eWallets and you will be glad to know that ZAR deposits are accepted and all deposits are generally fee-free.

There are a variety of XM bonus opportunities available too including a $30 bonus, 20%-50% deposit bonus, loyalty program, and numerous trading contests.

Rated: Excellent
Security 94
Cost 74
Trading 65
Education 68

Platforms: MT4 Dekstop, MT4 Web, MT5 Desktop, MT5 Web, MAC Platforms regulations: MIFID-ESMA, ASIC, CYSEC Minimum Deposit: 5
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74-89% of retail CFD accounts lose money

8. IC Markets

IC Markets is another of the top forex brokers in South Africa that you can select for trading. They have very low spreads are are globally regulated by CySEC, ASIC, and the FSA so you are very well protected.

You can choose from a total of 3 account types which are the Metatrader Standard, Metatrader Raw, and cTrader Raw accounts. As the name suggests, the broker offers both MT4 and MT5 as well as cTrader trading platforms depending on your choice as well as fully accessible demo accounts and Islamic trading accounts where requested.

In terms of currency, while there is no ZAR base currency or deposit available, USD, EUR, and AUD, are all supported and with no minimum deposit through wire transfers, credit cards, and eWallet methods.

While no bonuses are available, you can look forward to typically fee-free deposits and a competitive spread that starts from 0 pips.

Rated: Excellent
Security 93
Cost 91
Trading 100
Education 66

Platforms: cTrader desktop, cTrader web, Mirror Trader, ZuluTrade, MT4 Dekstop, MT4 Web, MT5 Desktop, MT5 Web regulations: ASIC, CYSEC, Offshore Minimum Deposit: 0
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74-89% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs

9. Pepperstone

Another awesome broker that is very well-regulated and compliant for traders in South Africa is Pepperstone. They have 2 account types available with their standard and razor account types and have respected oversight from both the FCA in the UK and ASIC in Australia. They are particularly a great choice if you prefer ECN execution.

Of the available accounts, MT4 and MT5 trading platforms can be used with the standard account, while cTrader can be used with the Pepperstone Razor account. Spreads start from 0 pips across the board.

In terms of available currencies, ZAR is not available as a base currency, but USD, GBP, and EUR all are. A fully operational demo account to try out the broker is also available.

As a forex trader with Pepperstone, you will find a minimum deposit of $200 in place and funding methods including wire transfer, credit cards, and eWallets all available typically with no deposit fee.

While there is no Pepperstone bonus available, there is an active trader program to lower costs for loyal traders.

Rated: Excellent
Security 94
Cost 75
Trading 100
Education 71

Platforms: cTrader desktop, cTrader web, ZuluTrade, MT4 Dekstop, MT4 Web, MT5 Desktop, MT5 Web, MAC Platforms regulations: FCA, MIFID-ESMA, ASIC, DFSA, CYSEC, Offshore Minimum Deposit: 0
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73.50% of retail investor accounts lose money

10. Oanda

Oanda is very much a top broker choice, and one which has the most respected regulations in place from the FCA, ASIC and other 4 top tier regulatory bodies. This regulation does not include South African authorities, but they are allowed to operate in the country alongside more than 100 others worldwide.

Since starting out in the US in 1995 Oanda has quickly grown to be not only one of the most trusted, but also most accessible forex brokers around. This is thanks largely to the no minimum deposit Oanda supports, and the low minimum trade size from $0.01. It makes the broker a great choice for beginners.

You will not find a massive selection of forex pairs available to trade at Oanda but they do offer a very competitive spread. This starts from the industry average of 1 pip but can start as low as 0 pips if you are trading with an Oanda Core Account which is available under ASIC regulation only.

Rated: Excellent
Security 94
Cost 70
Trading 71
Education 80

Platforms: MT4 Dekstop, MT5 Desktop, MT5 Web, Proprietary Desktop Platform, Proprietary Web Platform, MAC Platforms regulations: FSA, MAS, FCA, CFTC, MIFID-ESMA, ASIC, IIROC Minimum Deposit: 0

South African trader? Here’s what to look for in a forex broker

Unlike some other areas or regulatory bodies which can be quite stringent, the FSCA provides a lot of freedom and flexibility to both brokers and traders. Leverage, bonus offers, and account types can all be set at the discretion of the individual broker.

With that in mind then, here are a few key things to look out for when choosing your forex broker in South Africa.

1. Choose well-regulated forex brokers:

Naturally, as a forex trader in any country, one of the most important aspects is regulation. You should try to ensure your broker of choice is well-regulated by the FSCA or another top regulator like CySEC, FCA, or ASIC.

All of our listed brokers are.

2. ZAR Accounts:

If the broker offers ZAR currency as a deposit or base currency then this would certainly be a benefit to you as a South African trader.

This would avoid you having to pay any kind of conversion fees after you have funded your account although only a few of the top forex broker in South Africa facilitate ZAR deposits and base currencies.

3. Look for a bonus, but be wise:

Since forex broker bonuses are available under FSCA regulation, it makes sense that you should search for and consider the brokers with some of the best bonus offers. No deposit bonuses in particular may be a great way to get started for new traders if you do not want to have any kind of risk.

With that in mind though, you should always choose your broker first on the features and markets they offer to suit your style, and secondly based on bonus offers. This way you can always be sure of a higher level of broker satisfaction.

How to verify if a forex broker is regulated in South Africa

There are a few simple steps you can follow here in order to make sure that the broker you select is regulated within South Africa.

You should first visit the FSCA official website. From there you can search “regulated entities” through the homepage, selecting “FAIS” under the “list of regulated entities and persons” option.

Next you should choose “Financial Service Providers” which should lead you to this page. Finally, when here you can check the forex brokers registration number or you can check the list by the name of your broker. This can usually be completed within just a couple of moments.

Is forex trading taxable in South Africa?

Having done all of your searching and finally found a South African forex broker that you feel fits your needs perfectly, one of the last questions you have may be in relation to whether forex trading is taxable in South Africa?

The answer here is yes. The rate at which you can be taxed will depend on your income. The minimum percentage is 18% though this can stretch to a maximum of 40% capital gains tax depending on the situation.

You will be taxed annually, though you may in some cases be entitled to a tax refund for which you should complete an ITR12 document again on an annual basis.

If you are trading in cryptos, you should be aware that since 2014, these have been considered an intangible asset by the South African Revenue Service and as such, all capital gains here also must be declared and are subject to tax.

[Disclaimer: we are not accountants, we have done an internet research. Contact SARS or an Accountant if you don’t know how to manage this aspect]


DISCLOSURE may receive a monetary compensations from the brokerage companies listed above.

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