Nigeria is a rapidly developing country that has economic and trading relations with many countries. It has the largest population in Africa, and this provides the fuel for a vibrant economy. Their main exports are petroleum, cocoa, and gold valued in Europe, Asia, and the Americas. In turn, they import agricultural and fishery products in the billions of US dollars. Due to this large volume of imports and exports, forex is vital to this country.
If you are interested in forex trading and you live in Nigeria, can you trade here? The answer is yes. But you must be careful since not all brokerage firms that you find online in this country are legit. Some offer trading assets that are scams. Others use illegal trading practices. So, how can you avoid being robbed of your hard-earned money? We will discuss the criteria to help you identify the legit brokers. After that, we will list the best companies to do forex trading in Nigeria.
How do I find legit forex brokers in Nigeria?
As we mentioned, there are a lot of brokerage firms that offer forex trading in Nigeria. But you need to study which ones are legit and which are scammers.
- Regulation. The Central Bank of Nigeria supervises forex trading. But that supervision is limited to the basics. It just ensures that capital requirements are satisfied. And that they pay a registration fee. There is no central agency or organization that regulates the policies and monitors the practices of brokers. Enforcement is also a challenge.
So, if you are looking for a broker in Nigeria to do forex trading, your best choice is to go with an international broker. It is safer to deal with international brokers that have regulations in other countries. Ideally, look for brokers that get regulated in Tier 1 countries. These have the authority to operate in Europe, Australia, Japan, and the USA. Look for regulation certificates and license numbers from the following.
- FCA or the Financial Conduct Authority in the UK
- CySEC or the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission
- FCSA or Financial Sector Conduct Authority
- ASIC or Australian Securities and Investments Commission
- CFTC or Commodity Future Trading Commission in the US
- NFA or National Futures Association in the US
Brokers who submit to the authority of these regulatory agencies follow fair trade practices and strict rules on trading. It includes keeping your money and the company’s capital in separate accounts. And they will not run away with your money or charge you hidden and excessive fees.
- Reviews. Another vital aspect you can do to identify legit brokers is to check user reviews. Their positive reputation will give you peace of mind that they will take good care of your money. A simple check on online search engines will reveal lots of insider information about a brokerage firm. You can also check forums and discussion boards about the topic. If you know other forex traders, you can also ask them.
A word of caution: some testimonials deceive people. Scammers pay individuals to say something good about them. Some will spend money on advertising to promote themselves and project an image of legitimacy. So, it is vital to look at all sides when reading online reviews. If you are better informed, you can make better decisions.
To be sure that the reviews are legit, you can also check the source. News organizations and big online portals will only publish verified reviews. Commentaries from known and experienced traders will also be better than what an ordinary person says. Beware of celebrities or famous bloggers that write or talk on the subject when they do not know forex.
What do I look for in a legit forex broker?
Now that you identified the legit vs. scam brokers, how do you know which one is the best for you? The first step is to know your financial goals and trading habits. You will have to find a broker that aligns with your purpose. It must have a program to help you. For example, if you are a new trader, is the broker offering free educational programs to help you understand the basic concepts of trading? Is there a demo account for you to practice on before you start using your real money? Here are some additional points to consider.
- Customer support. Most people will take this for granted since they do not intend to use it anyway. But customer support is one of the most important factors to consider when choosing a forex broker. Forex trading happens 24-hours a day, and the currency value is changing fast. You will never know when you will have problems during your trading. Issues like forgetting your login details, double charges on your credit card, delays in withdrawal, or system failures are common to traders. Your broker should be able to address them right away. It also helps that customer support is accessible on different platforms. Look for brokers that have live chats, email, or local phone numbers. It must also have support for several languages.
- Wide trading assets. The best brokerage firms offer different trading instruments for their clients. It includes forex, stocks, commodities, cryptocurrencies, and indices. In forex, it should have currency pairings from major currencies to minor and even exotic pairs. This wide selection will allow you to expand your portfolio faster. It will also keep you from holding your position in a losing currency pair since others are available.
- Fees. As a company that operates daily and employs individuals, a broker will need to make some profit. Also, the development and maintenance of trading platforms cost money. Forex brokers charge their clients in different ways. Some charge commissions for every buy and sell order you make. Others charge fees based on spreads or the difference between the bid and ask price of a currency pair. Still, others will deduct a percentage for deposits and withdrawals made to your account. Whatever the fee structures, it must be stated clearly in the agreement. Choose the broker with a commission scheme that is comfortable with you and matches your trading habits. So, if you plan to deposit a small amount every week, choose a broker that has one-time deposit fees. It will save you a lot of money in the long term.
- Trading platform. It is vital to know the platform supported by your broker since this is where you will spend most of your time. Ensure that they have a simple and easy-to-navigate program for trading. Most brokers support the MetaTrader 4 and 5. These platforms are made for beginners and advanced traders and are available almost everywhere. But a few brokers have their trading platforms. If they do, check it out and see if it is user-friendly. Lastly, don’t forget to look at the supported devices. For maximum convenience, choose the one that works on desktop, web, and mobile apps.
- Risk management. Forex trading by itself is already risky. So, brokers offer risk management tools that come with a subscription account. It will save you from losing your money fast or going into debt overnight. Some of the most used risk management tools are negative balance protection and stop-loss feature. Some also offer a deal cancellation mechanism, though it may have penalties or termination fees.
What are the best forex brokers in Nigeria?
After discussing the ways and means to detect legit brokers in Nigeria, let us look at the top six companies you can use for forex trading.
- FXTM. It is a broker with more than two million clients worldwide that grew in just ten years. It follows strict regulations by the authorities like FCA and CySEC. FXTM operates in ten offices around the world. So, it is a broker that is safe to use. This broker accepts the local currency, Nigerian Naira, for account deposits and withdrawals. It makes it very convenient for locals to open an account. You can deposit as low as $50 or N10,000 to start trading. Withdrawals are completed in a few hours since the company has agreements with the local banks in Nigeria.
FXTM has a wide range of currency pairs. It offers 57 major and minor pairings. So, whether you trade on the GBP/USD or any other currencies, FXTM has it all. Another advantage of this broker is that they have one of the highest leverages at 1:1,000. It means you can multiply your profits faster. But the risk of losses is faster too.
Aside from the high leverage, this broker also offers a feature called social trading. It is a copy trader tool that allows you to mirror the strategy of an experienced trader. So, you don’t have to create your plan. It helps beginners to start trading immediately and lessen the risk of losing money from unproven trading plans. The platforms used by FXTM are MetaTrader 4 and 5. Most traders will be happy to know this since this is the most used platform in the world today. You don’t have to study new systems developed by some independent brokers. Also, the MT4/MT5 support web, desktop, and mobile devices. So, it is a convenient platform to use.
For customer support, FXTM offers round-the-clock services. You can contact them through live chat or email. There is even a section on the website dedicated to frequently asked questions. Scroll through the topics to find answers to any questions you might have. For clients in Nigeria, they have offices in Abuja and Lagos that cater to local clients. Visit them during work hours or give them a call to get more personalized service.
For beginners, FXTM also offers many educational tools to get you started with trading. You will find videos, articles, and webinars that explain the basics of forex trading. They even have eBooks, which you can access via your mobile phone and tablet. Read them at your most convenient time. They even have live seminars and training conducted straight from their Nigeria office, so watch out for that. Follow them on their social media accounts to get updated on the training schedules.
- AvaTrade. It started in 2009 in Ireland and now trades more than $70 billion per month. It has offices in Paris, Dublin, Milan, Tokyo, and Sydney and gets regulated in these markets. Among the top regulators that monitor their services are the ASIC in Australia, FSA in Japan, and the Central Bank of Ireland. It is another legit broker available for Nigerian citizens and residents. You can create an account with a low deposit of $100. As a bonus, they don’t charge deposit and withdrawal fees.
AvaTrade has more than 60 currency pairs representing major and minor pairings. They also offer stocks, ETFs, cryptocurrencies, and commodities. So, it is easy to expand your portfolio once you have developed confidence. And the winning strategy. This broker also offers high leverage of 1:1,000 for forex trading, making it one of the highest in the industry.
One unique offer of AvaTrade is the use of fixed spreads. It means their spread value will not change even if the market conditions or time of the day causes fluctuations. It gives additional protection from rapid and excessive movements in the value of currency pairings. Also, the fixed spreads get zero commissions. So, you will have more money to spend on honing and perfecting your trading skills. And not on paying fees and commissions of brokers.
Trading with AvaTrade is not complicated. You can choose the MetaTrader platforms or their very own AvaTradeGO. It is an advanced tool made for mobile phone users. It allows you to trade anytime and anywhere. A nice feature built-in AvaTradeGO is the AvaProtect, a policy that will pay you back for losses. Once you set a protected period, AvaProtect will reimburse you if the value of the currencies you are trading for decreases for any reason. You also get protection from negative balance when using this platform.
AvaTrade has a local phone number for traders in Nigeria. But you must call within office hours only. You can also find live chat support, a skype call shortcut, and email contact. Unlike other brokers, these channels are not available 24 hours a day. So, for any trading concerns, you only have working hours as your window to contact them.
For new traders, AvaTrade offers several ways to develop your trading skills. You can watch step-by-step videos and tutorials. You can choose to download the free eBooks on forex strategies. You can even learn from daily blogs that feature recent and relevant market data and inspiring stories.
- HotForex. It is a broker that has more than 2.5 million live accounts serviced by over 200 employees worldwide. It gets regulated by the FCA in the UK and the FSCA in South Africa, and other authorities in Dubai and Seychelles. It is a legitimate broker to use for people in Nigeria who want to trade forex. HotForex is hot on offers that make it easy for beginners to start their journey in trading. With just a $50 initial deposit, you will get a 50% welcome bonus. It means your total credit will now be $75. It is a unique offer that most regulated brokers do not have. Another good offer is a 100% bonus for every $200 deposited into your account. If you worry about losing your money in trading, the 30% rescue bonus will help to ease some of the worries. Check out their website for more information on these offers.
HotForex has over 50 currency pairings that represent major, minor, and exotic currencies. If you wish to trade in other instruments, they have over 1,200 available. It includes shares, indices, bonds, commodities, and ETFs. With this wide range of assets available, expanding your investment portfolio is easy and hassle-free. Also, HotForex has high leverage of 1:1,000. This leverage can multiply your profits fast.
One of the best things about HotForex is the low minimum deposit. For the Micro account, you only need a $5 deposit. They also offer spreads as low as 0.3 pips for the EUR/USD currency pairs, one of the lowest spreads in the market today. You can also trade freely without worrying about commissions for the more premium accounts. So, if you have the money, open a premium or zero spread accounts.
Hotforex uses the popular trading platforms MetaTrader4 and 5. With these platforms, you can trade anytime and from anywhere. As a HotForex user, you will have access to the MT4 and MT5 apps for Android, iPhone, and iPad. It is on top of the web terminal and desktop versions. For Corporate clients and big-budgeted retail traders, they also have the HotForex FIX/API. It is a more advanced and automated trading system for clients with a $200,000 minimum deposit.
Customer support is one of the best in the industry, with support 24 hours a day via live chat. Email and toll-free numbers are also available for any query you might have. The good news for people in Nigeria is that they have a local contact number. Also, HotForex accepts bank deposits and withdrawals from Nigeria-based banks. It makes funding accounts and realization of profit a walk in the park.
For new forex traders, they have fifteen educational videos. These cover the basics of trading, various trading strategies, and the psychology of trading. There are also e-courses, video tutorials, and live webinars to build your knowledge and confidence in forex trading. Also, a how-to video series covers areas such as how to open an account and how to transfer funds.
- IC Markets. It is the biggest currency broker in the world at more than $1 trillion in trading volume. It gets regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission. In Europe, the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission regulates it. For this reason, Nigerians can trade confidently with this broker. You can deposit as low as $100 to start forex trading. IC Markets will not charge you fees for deposits and withdrawals. But certain banks may impose charges so, check with your preferred bank before signing in for an account.
This broker has the highest number of currency pairs traded each day, currently at 61 major, minor, and exotic pairs. No wonder they are the biggest forex trader in the world by trading volume. Every day, it processes more than $29 billion worth of forex trades. Due to this volume, IC Markets can offer a low spread of 0.1 on the EUR/USD. Spreads are also at 0.0 pips, which means the bid and ask price are almost the same.
IC Markets uses a wide range of trading platforms available for their clients. You can select the widely popular MetaTrader 4 and 5 if you are already familiar with it. It can execute trades fast with leverage as high as 1:500. There are also no trading restrictions so, you can trade all the currency pairs you want. It is perfect for scalpers and advanced traders. For professional traders, the cTrader is also available on IC Markets. It provides real-time forex pricing, one-click trading, and multiple ordering.
The Help Center is a one-stop-shop created to make the client experience complete. It has a database of the most common questions about trading. If you prefer to chat with a live customer service representative, you can select the live chat option. It gives support 24 hours a day and seven days a week. It shows that IC Markets value their clients so much that weekends are not an excuse. Other options available are email support and call-back systems.
For beginners, IC markets have an extensive library of resources. Choose from video tutorials, web TV, webinars, and podcast. As of August 18, 2021, there are seven podcasts available for free viewing. Of course, the good old lecture series is also available for the older generation.
- XM. It has the biggest client base on this list with more than 5 million clients coming from 196 countries. It is regulated by the IFSC or the International Financial Services Commission. It also submits to the authority of the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission, especially for operations in Europe. In Australia, the ASIC has oversight over its operations. It is a secure broker that Nigerians can trust. The initial deposit is affordable at only $5 or the equivalent of Nigerian Naira 1,800. For new users, it offers many deals including a $30 trading bonus that requires zero deposits. Another offer is the two-tier bonus that gives you a 50% deposit bonus + an additional 20% for deposits $2,000 and up. There are also zero fees on all deposits and withdrawals made on your account. It covers all transactions using your e-wallets and credit cards.
XM offers forex trading in over 55 currency pairs. It includes major, minor, and exotic currencies. It is used in forex trading by over 196 countries which is proof of their fair-trading practices. If you wish to widen your portfolio, you can also trade on other CFDs like indices, commodities, metals, and energies. This broker has very high leverage at 1:888. If you trade wisely, this will generate bigger profits in the long term. It has a zero-commission scheme for the standard trading account. This 0% scheme was also expanded to the micro account.
XM does not have a personal trading platform. But they use the very popular MetaTrader 4 and 5. And it gives clients access to all MetaTrader devices like the Macbook, PC, Android, iPhone, and iPad. You can also use the WebTrader version where you don’t have to download any app. With a stable internet connection, you can trade any currency you want straight from your web browser.
Help is available 24 hours a day, 5 times a week. You can call the hotline, send an email, or chat with a customer care specialist. If you don’t want to speak with anyone, you can choose to locate the FAQ section on the website. It is where you will find all the relevant questions about trading, account opening, deposits and withdrawals, and trading platform concerns.
For people who are new to trading, there is a learning center that gives valuable support. Here you will find instructional videos, webinars, and seminars. If that is not enough there is a live education streaming session every day. Take advantage of this to learn from experts. Ask your questions and get answers in real-time. Also, you can see live trading session days through XM live. In this room, they also have live debates that compare the different trading strategies. It’s an emotion-packed and brain-challenging exercise that you will not want to miss out on.
- OctaFX. It is the winner of the best forex broker in Asia award for 2021 by the Global Banking and Finance Review. Since the company started in 2011, it has managed more than 6.6 million forex trading accounts in more than 100 countries. It is regulated by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission or CySEC so clients from Nigeria can trust it to handle their money properly. You can deposit as low as $25 if you are a VISA account holder. For other deposit accounts, the minimum is $50. OctaFX has the lowest spreads in the market, as low as 0.1 pips on currencies. Plus, they will not charge you swaps on orders you keep overnight. Also, they charge no commissions on deposit and withdrawal transactions.
But the best thing about OctaFX is that they offer a lot of bonus programs for clients. First, they have a referral program that allows you to earn a commission for volume trades done by your friends. Next, they have a 50% bonus credit each time you deposit money into your account. And this bonus can be activated at any time and any rate. For example, you can trade today in EUR/USD forex but only want to use 20% of your bonus credit. This is allowed by the platform so you can use the remaining 30% credit bonus on your next trading orders.
The only downside is that OctaFX currently has limited currency pairs. You can only trade from among the 28 currency pairs available. Other brokers offer as many as 50 to 60 currency pairs. But don’t let this limitation discourage you as they have one of the highest leverages in the market at 1:500.
OctaFX uses the MetaTrader 4 and 5, the most popular trading platforms in the world. The MT4 is the platform of choice for new traders since it has a simple and easy-to-navigate interface. MT5 is the more advanced version with more complex charting and technical analysis features designed for experienced traders.
Support is now provided 24/7 to their clients through a live chat feature. You can also email or visit any of their offices during standard work hours. Also, you can send any additional query or concern through Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
For new traders, they offer webinars and video tutorials. They also have topics-based reading materials to get you up to speed with forex trading.
How much do you need to start trading forex in Nigeria?
The initial deposit is dependent on the brokers you choose. Some require as low as $5, while others set the minimum as $100. It also depends on the type of account you prefer. So before joining any broker, check the initial deposit requirement listed on their website.
Is forex trading legal in Nigeria?
Yes, forex trading is legal in Nigeria. There are a few brokers with offices in the country. Others have a Nigeria contact number to answer your queries and concerns in real-time.
Which forex broker is the best in Nigeria?
FXTM is the best forex broker in Nigeria. The main reason is that they accept the local currency, the Nigerian Naira. Deposits and withdrawals can be made in Naira, avoiding additional fees from currency exchange and wire transfers. Also, their physical offices in Lagos and Abuja make them accessible and trustworthy.
Is Forex Trading in Nigeria profitable?
Forex trading is risky. You need skill and discipline to succeed. Once you understand the risks, you can adjust your mindset and trading strategies to make profits.