Local Brokers Pros And Cons: CM Trading
CM Trading was a weird case: on one hand, I was about to call it the ugliest broker I reviewed so far; on the other hand, I couldn’t say a bad word about it. How come?
CM Trading turned out to be a South African broker, pretty tiny and aimed on the local audience. Apparently, South African regulation is very tricky, and licensed brokers mostly aren’t presented in this area. So, if you’re a South African trader sensitive to legal precision, CM would be your way to go. Let’s see if a non-South African trader can find it interesting.
CM works under the financial regulation of the Financial Services Board (FSB) South Africa. I imagine it’s a big deal in this region, but no other major licenses are mentioned on the website. However, the company is widely presented in MENA region and has offices in UK, Canada, Malaysia, Brazil, Mexico, China, France, Saudi Arabia, and Bahrain.
CM offers the total of 27 currency pairs. CFD, indices and commodity trading are also available, no exotic assets presented.
Accounts, Spreads, And Leverage
Clients can choose from 4 account types: Mini, Standard, Execute, and Gold. They also have an Islamic account. As you can see, the minimum deposit with the Mini account is $250, which is enormous (compare it with $1 at FBS). Considering this number, the leverage of 1:200 and spread marked just as “spread” (if you want to get a “competitive spread”, you would have to invest $25 000, and that’s totally insane). Needless to say, the pricing and trading conditions aren’t complementary, and the only reason to stick with this broker is the lack of choice in that specific area.
Available Trading Platforms
Aside from MT4, the company offers a custom Sirix platform as well as Sirix CopyKat for copy trading. I have no idea why someone would trade with something aside from MetaTrader, but apparently there are some volunteers.
As I’ve mentioned earlier, CM has several offices in different countries. One can find the related phone numbers on the website… and that’s it. No IMs popping up, even no emails except for the corporate ones. I’ve managed to find the IM option later, but it wasn’t an intuitive experience. At certain points, the broker feels like a time machine to 1990s.
CM Trading compulsively highlights its security, saying CM is the safest place to trade in the world. I was suspecting some top-notch encryption technologies, but it turned out to be segregated funds – the company keeps clients’ money in the banks separately from the broker’s. Assumingly, most operations go to one of the South African banks, so if a client-to-be is okay with that, it can help him be a little less paranoid about his funds.
They have quite a good-looking blog (with news copypasted from other brokers’ blogs though) and a massive library of educational materials. That’s weird because the focus on education implies a primarily newbie audience, although the initial deposit numbers says CM is a broker for millionaires.
Predictably, CM trading doesn’t offer any contests and promotions. However, they have 1 fancy feature that I haven’t met anywhere else before – the risk-free trades. You can get 1 shot on the Standard account, 2 on Execute, and 3 on Gold. Right, that $25 000-cost Gold.
Website looks terrible – I’m not asking for a super fancy design and layout, but default stock photos used on the main page definitely make me laugh. Texts are pointless and uninformative clichés that don’t give you a clear idea of why on earth CM Trading is actually worth trading with.
In general, I’ve got no beef with this broker because I can’t imagine in what universe I would choose it for trading. However, I understand that it is beneficial for local clients in certain ways.
Long story short, CM Trading is hardly a good idea – it’s expensive, limited in opportunities, and overall dull. However, it may suit local traders due to a higher security level, extra deposit/withdrawal options, and of course an FSB license. As far as I know, it’s not easy to find a licensed broker in South Africa, which brings me to the idea that this fact is the major (and probably the only) reason why people choose and stick with this broker.