Overall Ranking: 4.1 stars out of 5
Ease Of Use: 4.5 stars out of 5
Costs: 4.6 stars out of 5
Educational Resources & Customer Support: 4.4 stars out of 5
Research & Analysis Tools 3.0 stars out of 5
Range Of Product Offerings: 4.0 stars out of 5
Summary: A superb, Australian-based broker with a narrow product class focus and a time tested interface.
Recommended For: Anyone, but it’s an especially good fit for newer users, given its ease of use, widely used interface and excellent customer support.
Do you live in Australia, and are you interested in supporting one of the brokers from your own country? Does your primary interest lie in trading Forex and CFD’s? If you answered yes to either of those questions, you’re going to like what you read in this review.
While Axitrader isn’t the industry’s biggest broker, they are exceptional and as long as you’re not interested in trading a broad spectrum of investments, they’re well worth considering.
In the sections that follow, we’ll take a closer look at the platform and tell you everything Axitrader has to offer so you’ll have all the information you need to make an informed decision. If that sounds good to you, let’s jump right in!
Ease Of Use (4.5 stars out of 5)
Right off the bat, we have to give Axitrader high marks because their platform is built around Meta Trader which isn’t exactly an industry standard but it has been widely adopted a number of brokers in the business today.
From a practical perspective, that means if you’ve used some other broker in the past and that broker used Meta Trader 4, there’s nothing new to learn. You already know what to expect. That’s a very good thing, because it means you can sign up and hit the ground running without having to contend with a steep learning curve. Kudos to Axitrader for that!
This does have one drawback that’s worth mentioning.
We love Meta Trader 4. It’s convenient. Lots of people are familiar with it. It’s almost (but not quite) an industry standard.
Unfortunately, its design is also really dated. Five or six years ago, it would have been considered close to cutting edge. Nowadays though, it looks a little tired. That’s not the end of the world and honestly, it’s mostly a cosmetic thing but aesthetics matter and Meta Trader is long overdue for an upgrade and design overhaul.
As with most online brokers these days, Axitrader offers both a desktop (PC) and a mobile experience and the app is available for both iOS and Android devices.
In general, you’ll find the mobile trading experience to be superior, but the two are highly similar. That’s a good thing because it’s not always something that’s a given on other platforms. We’ve seen other offerings where the desktop and app-based experiences were so different that you essentially had to learn two different platforms to conduct trades on all your devices. That’s not the case here, and we love it.
The account setup process is straightforward and painless, though it can take up to 3 days to get your account fully established and ready to use. That seems a bit slow to us, but we’re not incredibly bothered it.
Once you’re in, you’ll find that the whole thing is pretty intuitive and easy to use, though as we mentioned, it looks a bit dated and could use some modernizing.
Even so, buying and selling is a simple affair, though you’ll only find the basic order types available; no conditional orders available but that’s certainly not the kiss of death.
Costs (4.6 stars out of 5)
This is another big positive for Axitrader, and in fact, a strong argument could be made that this is their primary selling point. There’s no minimum deposit to open an account (and you can open one entirely online), there are no inactivity fees, and no fees for deposits and withdrawals.
Of course, the company does have to make money somewhere, but even where you find fees, you’ll find them to be inline with what other, sometimes much larger brokerage firms are charging, which is huge. Just to give you a couple of examples, the EUR/USD benchmark fee is $13.80 on Axitrader, compared to $15.80 on IC Markets and $14.9 on Pepperstone.
The GBP/USD benchmark fee is $11.60 on Axitrader, compared to $12.10 on IC Markets and $12.50 on Pepperstone.
That same basic relationship is seen across the board, with Axitraders fees coming in slightly lower on just about every currency pair. In terms of CFD fees, you find more or less the same thing. For instance, the S&P 500 Index CFD fee is $1.70, which compares favorably to IC Markets $2.50 and Pepperstone’s $2.00 fee, while the Axitrader fee for the Europe 50 Index CFD is $1.20, which compares to $1.90 for IC Markets and $1.60 for Pepperstone.
In other words, you’ll almost certainly be paying less in fees, which means bigger profits for you!
Educational Resources & Customer Support (4.4 stars out of 5)
Every platform has its strong points and its weaknesses. In this regard, Axitrade is what we’d describe as significantly better than average, but this isn’t their strongest category. They’ve got a good collection of educational materials and all of it is high quality. You’ll find ebooks, videos and well-researched articles, and best of all, a lot of (but not all of) their material is geared toward the beginner.
That’s awesome, and if you’re new to investing and looking for rich vein of educational materials, you’ll really like what you find here. That, combined with the fact that Meta Trader is easy to learn how to use makes this an excellent option for beginners.
You can set up a demo account and you’ll find a thorough tutorial that explains how to use their platform, along with a good selection of educational videos aimed mostly (but not completely) at beginners.
Unfortunately, you’ll probably run through the stuff you’re most interested in fairly quickly and once you do, that’s it. That’s all there is, so you’ll outgrow it fairly quickly and be looking for a new source of educational material.
Again, that’s not the worst thing. Axitrader has a larger educational library than many of its bigger competitors, which is pretty impressive, but they’ve got other attributes that rank even higher, so this isn’t what we’d consider one of their star features.
On the customer service front, the company is exceptional, and you’ll find live chat access to knowledgeable experts, phone support and email.
Of these, the email support is the weakest link and is quite slow. The rest are outstanding but be aware that Axitrader does not have 24/7 phone support. It is 24/5, so if you get in trouble over the weekend, you’re on your own until Monday.
Research & Analysis Tools (3.0 stars out of 5)
This is one of Axitrader’s genuine points of weakness. We’d still rate them better than average, but this is no means one of the strongest components of the company’s offering.
The good news is that the company’s research portal is very user-friendly, so even if you don’t consider yourself to be a very tech-savvy person, you’ll be able to wrap your arms and your brain around what you find here fairly quickly.
Part of what you’ll find here is a very thorough and complete economic calculator. It doesn’t matter if you’re new to investing or not, that’s huge, because it gives you a birds’ eye view into who’s releasing which reports, and when.
Unfortunately, the company offers absolutely nothing in terms of fundamental data and you won’t get any trading ideas from the platform, either.
You do have access to a decent set of charting tools that include more than 30 different technical indicators but the design of the tool set is beginning to show its age, and Axitrader’s charting tools aren’t nearly as impressive as they could be, nor as full-featured as many of their competitors’. That’s a genuine disappointment.
You’ve also got newsfeed access, which is very good, and something of a rarity on MT4-based platforms, but the newsfeed doesn’t have any visual elements, which is a limitation.
On the other hand, you can go to the website direct and find a wide variety of topical, timely news-related articles updated on a daily basis. Here though, the potential wrinkle is that some of these are only visible if you’re in Australia or the UK. If you’re in some other part of the world, full access to the news pieces on the site is hit or miss.
Range Of Product Offerings (4.0 stars out of 5)
This is what makes Axitrader a very self-selecting platform. Their range of product offerings is limited to Forex and CFD’s. If you’re interested in trading just those things, great! It’s not a problem at all.
On the other hand, if you think you might be interested in trading something else, either right now, or down the line, then sooner or later, you’re going to come up against the constraints and limitations of Axitrader’s product offering.
When that happens, it’s not going to be the end of the world, but it will mean that when you want to try your hand at investing in something else, barring a big strategic change on the part of Axitrader, you’ll have to go elsewhere to do that.
In light of all of the above, we graded the company on a curve for this dimension. While it’s true that they don’t have a product range that’s as broad as many, or even most other brokers, what they have within the band they’ve opted to focus on is excellent. The limited number of investment classes is a feature, not a bug!
Pros And Cons
We like Axitrader. A lot. They’re a great, widely accredited broker and they’re very competitive in their narrow investment product band.
That narrow investment product band is both their greatest strength and their greatest weakness.
When you’re very focused on just a couple of things, you can get really good at doing those things, and based on the fees, Axitrader is very good indeed.
Unfortunately, the more you narrow your product catalog, the fewer people you’ll attract because a lot of people want more options, so it’s a balancing act.
If your primary interest is investing in Forex and CFD’s, then Axitrader belongs on your short list of brokers to consider, no doubt about it. If you’re interested in trading anything else, then Axitrader should still be on your radar, but you might be more interested in a broker that allows you to trade everything you’re interested in under a single platform.
Either way though, this is a quality operation and we recommend them.