Broker comparison – who is the best? In this article, we are introducing Oanda.
Oanda background info
Oanda is an internationally engaged online broker that can be numbered amongst the longest-standing providers in the financial market. Besides its current head office in London, the company also maintains a number of branches in the cities of Singapore, Tokyo, Toronto, Chicago and Zurich. The broker was originally founded as an information only platform in the year 1995.
The history of Oanda
Having served as an information only platform in the first years after its establishment, the online broker changed in 2001. This is the year when Oanda launched a trading platform that innovated online currency trading at the time and enabled forex traders to trade from as little as US$ 1. In 2004, the online broker then stepped up its price flexibility while reducing the offered spreads. In addition to which Oanda was the first to introduce fractional pips quoted with the fifth decimal place.
In the year 2007, the company also expanded to the Asian region and opened a branch in Singapore.
This was then followed by the establishment of its London branch in 2011, which took responsibility for clients in the European region from then on. Three years later, the online broker also expanded to Australia, opening another branch in Sydney. The company continues to work on new efficient technologies and innovations to this day, in order to be able to offer its clients an optimal service.
Regulation of Oanda and deposit protection
The online broker Oanda is regulated by the British FCA (Financial Conduct Authority), which is responsible for financial service providers in the European region. This authority is known for its strict requirements and measures. In the course of this, the company is required to file regular financial reports with the FCA to ensure the necessary transparency and legality.
In addition to this, the client’s deposits are also kept separately from the company’s own financial assets at renowned banks. These funds are only ever used for the trading activities pursued by the broker’s clients, or also for pay-outs to them.
Client funds in Europe are insured up to a sum total of GBP 50,000 in keeping with the requirements of the FSCS (Financial Services Compensation Scheme).
Awards garnered by Oanda
The established online broker has also been able to win a variety of awards in recent years. To name them all would be impossible here for reasons of space. Which is why only some of the most important and latest ones shall be highlighted below.
- 2018 – Investment Trends: Highest Overall Client Satisfaction
- 2018 – FX Week – eFX: Best Retail FX Platform
- 2018 – Investment Trends: Mobile Platform/App
- 2018 – Investment Trends: Customer Service
Which markets can be traded at Oanda?
The selection of markets available for trading at an online provider is always one of the key criteria for choosing a suitable broker. Oanda offers its clients a broad range of trading instruments in this regard, which are to be briefly outlined below.
The online broker Oanda is most of all known for Forex trading. With a daily trading volume of over US$ 5 trillion, the currency market ranks as the market with the highest liquidity in the world, enabling it to offer plenty of investment opportunities. Besides the Majors, Oanda clients can choose from more than 55 other currency pairs (with over 90 on offer overall), which are available for trading with fair spreads and no commissions.
In addition to the above, Oanda can also be used to trade commodities such as oil, natural gas, sugar and wheat, for example, by way of CFDs without commissions.
The range of services available at Oanda also includes bond trading. This helps its clients to diversify their portfolio, thereby lowering their risk.
Oanda clients can also speculate on the world’s largest financial markets by way of stock indices. The trading here is supported by the provision of useful business news.
Trading with precious metals is still regarded as a “safe haven” by many in the world of investment. But precious metals can also help investors diversify their portfolios and hedge their positions. The online broker Oanda makes popular precious metals such as gold, silver and platinum available to its clients on its website for this.
Trading platforms at Oanda
Now we should turn to another key aspect that plays just as important a role for selecting an online broker. This is of course the trading platforms available there. Please see below for further details of them.
Web trading platform
The online broker Oanda first of all offers its clients a classic web trading platform enabling them to trade CFDs and currencies directly from their own browsers. The order execution speed for this is above average in comparison with competitors, and there are also no “last look“, rejections or requotes. The platform itself has an intuitive and transparent design, helping new users to get their bearings quite quickly. Also helpful are the many tools integrated in this web trading platform.
In this respect, users are provided with over 100 different technical indicators and drawing tools enabling their effective analysis of the financial markets. In addition to which trades can be placed and managed directly from the charts.
And last but not least, the platform also comes equipped with a tool that continuously provides users with the latest relevant news.
Desktop trading platform
In addition to this, there is also a desktop trading platform at Oanda. This desktop trading platform is also of a clearly structured design and enables flexible trading and management of the clients’ own portfolios. Just like the web trading platform, the desktop version is also equipped with a variety of useful tools designed to enable optimal trading for its users.
Mobile trading apps
All investors preferring to trade on the go using mobile devices will find that the mobile version available at Oanda suits them perfectly. The online broker’s trading apps enable clients to access a great variety of trading instruments. In addition to which users are also provided with a number of technical indicators and tools designed to optimize their mobile chart trading here.
Important news and economic data can be displayed in the Oanda Alerts and Notifications, ensuring that users never miss any opportunities.
Specifically for the iPad, there is also the option of displaying individual charts in screen size or arranging various charts on the screen to meet the user’s respective requirements.
Apart from the platforms detailed above, investors can also make use of the popular Online trading platform MetaTrader 4 and benefit from its advantages. This software is quickly and easily installed from the Oanda website. There is even a setup video for this, designed to provide the required instructions.
Another important advantage of the MetaTrader 4 software is that users can benefit from automatic trading while relying on EA (expert advisor) support in the process.
Oanda is one of the currently 12 brokers that can be used by means of the popular TradingView platform.
Trading conditions at Oanda
Currency and CFD prices are always shown in real time at Oanda, and updated every second tick-by-tick. Electronic networking with a variety of major banks around the globe ensures that the precise exchange rates are identified at all times and directly provided to all clients. An detailed overview of all the spreads offered by Oanda can be viewed on the website at all times.
It would make little sense to list them all here, of course, as they are subject to permanent fluctuations. But what can be said as a matter of principle is that the spreads are always fair and competitive. The current spread for the major currency pair EUR/USD amounts to 1 pip.
Another advantage offered by the trading conditions at Oanda is the fact that executed orders are not subject to any additional commissions and that no minimum deposit is required to start trading.
Tools and aids
Also of interest are the many tools available to the online broker’s clients. As a client, one can thus benefit from a variety of trading functions at Oanda. These for example include expanded chart tools, chart pattern recognition, or also relevant Business news. The most important tools are therefore to be briefly outlined below.
Expanded chart functions
As already briefly mentioned above, users can trade directly from the charts quickly and efficiently, placing and/or processing specific trades by a single click.
In addition to which clients can choose from a great number of popular technical indicators, e.g. “moving averages, MACD, Ichimoku cloud, volume, Aroon, Balance of Power (BOP), Donchian channels” and more.
Chart intervals enable users to analyse charts in various intervals ranging from 5 seconds to a month.
Oanda Technical Analysis
The automated pattern recognition technology enables market trends to be quickly detected in the Technical Analysis at Oanda and put to a profitable use. In addition to which this tool also includes a Volatility analysis function enabling a better risk assessment for the respective trading instruments. Added to this is a performance statistic showing the development of your own portfolio over the last six months in a clear and transparent manner.
Oanda Algo Lab
The “Algo Lab” tool enables Oanda clients to set up, test and use their trading strategies directly from their web browser. Their Backtesting of these trading strategies can meanwhile draw on tick data reaching back all the way to the year 2004. Also to be highlighted at this juncture is the high speed in which this backtesting is performed. Oanda promises these results to become available up to 50 times faster than on a home computer.
The online broker Oanda is cooperating with leading news organizations such as Dow Jones International or 4CAST, for example. This helps users benefit from the latest and most important news from around the world at all times.
Economic events in overlay
Reports and news concerning the client’s own trading strategy are shown directly on the Trading platform in a corresponding timeline at the bottom of the screen. This helps users keep a constant eye on essential news and important reports affecting their own portfolio. How these economic events are displayed is meanwhile customizable to the respective user’s individual requirements.
The demo account at Oanda
Oanda now also offers the option of using a demo account. This is especially recommended for anyone preferring to try out the online broker initially without a financial risk. The use of this demo account is neither linked with any costs, nor subject to any time limit. This makes it easy for interested traders to try out any trading strategies they develop for themselves under real framework conditions by way of the respective trading platforms.
In the Oanda Demo account, they can rely on unlimited virtual funds for this, available for real-time trading under real conditions, based on the respectively latest prices and spreads.
Customer service at Oanda
At this juncture, a few words should also be said about the customer service at Oanda. The online broker first of all offers interested parties an extensive FAQ directory on its website that will already answer a great many important questions. In addition, there is also an Oanda support available five days a week for enquiries by e-mail, live chat or telephone. The live chat and telephone enquiries are principally possible from 1 p.m. Sundays to 6 p.m. Fridays (US Eastern Time). Depending on the continent, a corresponding support team is available to handle enquiries.
Training services at Oanda
On top of all this, Oanda also offers options for traders interested in furthering their knowledge. On the one hand, the online broker provides comprehensive information on the basics of trading as well as the available tools and trading strategies, which can be worked through directly on the website. The so-called “Oanda Classroom” meanwhile offers an additional opportunity to select from and register for a broad range of online seminars. It should be noted here, however, that these webinars are only available in English at this moment in time.
Reviews and conclusion
Finally we should also take a brief look at the reviews of the online broker available online. These are mostly positive, especially where the many tools and demo account for unlimited use are concerned. The customer support is also rated as mostly reliable and quick to respond to clients’ and interested parties’ enquiries. The spreads and trading conditions are found to be competitive in general, and it is also appreciated that the trading is not subject to any additional commissions.
There are good reasons then for the online broker Oanda’s ability to stay in the market for such a long time, and still number amongst the established providers in its industry.