Note: ThinkForex has been rebranded to ThinkMarkets
ThinkMarkets is a solid forex broker that is regulated by ASIC in Australia and the FCA in the United Kingdom. They have no known regulatory violations. They score well on other key evaluation criteria making them a top choice for most brokers. Their permanent demo accounts make them particularly suitable for new traders who have not yet established a profitable trading record.
Unlike most other forex review sites, Forex Scam Alerts does not receive financial compensation from ThinkMarkets.
The ThinkMarkets brand is owned by TF Global Markets (Aust) Pty Ltd, based in Australia. It was started as a forex broker in 2010 in New Zealand and relocated its headquarters to Australia in 2012. The company's brand was previous known as ThinkForex, and was changed to ThinkMarkets in 2016. The brand changed, the company did not. More information about the rebrand can be found here.
Summary Of Regulatory Status
ThinkMarkets is regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commissions (ASIC) in Australia under license number 424700. ThinkMarkets is also a member of the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS). If you have a complaint with ThinkMarkets, they have an internal dispute handling process to follow. If that process does not produce satisfactory results, you may refer the matter to the FOS for an independent review. Both the documented internal dispute handling process and the FOS membership are unusual for a forex broker and they provides additional protection for a forex trader if something goes wrong with this broker.
ThinkMarkets is also regulated as TF Global Markets (UK) Limited by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the United Kingdom, with FCA Number 629628.
ThinkMarkets has no known regulatory violations or any adverse action taken against it by the regulators.
ThinkMarkets capital reserves are not available at this time. However, ThinkMarkets is subject to regulatory requirements that require the maintenance of adequate financial resources, as well as stress testing to ensure that adverse market conditions can be withstood by ThinkMarkets. ThinkMarkets advises that they keep client funds not required for margin purposes are held in trust accounts with top tier banks, and are separate from ThinkMarkets's operating funds. Note, however, that ThinkMarkets's terms and conditions of business advise that this does not protect client's money from the risk of loss. According to ThinkMarkets's Product Disclose Statement, should ThinkMarkets go bankrupt, clients are treated as unsecured creditors when trying to recover their account balances.
ThinkMarkets managed through the January 2015 SNB Swiss franc event, and chose to forgive negative account balances of clients who were affected, though they are not obligated to do this should a similar event arise in the future.
ThinkMarkets is a non-dealing desk broker. However, ThinkMarkets is the counterparty to your trades, which means they employ the market maker business model. They may choose to hedge your trades with a prime brokerage, or leave your positions unhedged. This is not the preferred business model recommended by Forex Scam Alerts.
FIX API connections are available to VIP accounts with a minimum $25,000 deposit, but this account type is not covered in this review.
ThinkMarkets has two pricing models: an all-in spread with no commissions is available for the standard account, and a transparent pricing model with a lower spread plus commissions is available for Pro accounts. The total transaction costs are generally lower for the Pro account type, and the minimum operating balance for the Pro accounts is $2,000. The evaluation of ThinkMarkets spreads is based on the Pro account.
ThinkMarkets spreads are fairly competitive, but are not quite as tight as the leading brokers in this category. The commissions are also competitive, but not as low as the leading brokers in this category. How much this matters depends on the type of trading that is to be done. For traders who scalp the markets with trades that last a few minutes or less, this difference will be significant and a lower cost broker should be considered. However, for traders who trade longer timeframes and who may hold positions overnight may not consider this difference to be significant.
Accounts and Funding
Clients of ThinkMarkets can open and fund new accounts using a variety of funding methods, including:
- wire transfers
- Global Collect
- credit / debit cards
- Union Pay & Netbanx for Chinese currency
Money withdrawals can be made using the same funding type used for deposits. Note that some of these methods incur significant transaction fees, while others have low fees, so care should be taken when choosing a funding method.
ThinkMarkets offers permanent demo accounts for their cTrader platform. This uncommon feature is of particular importance to new traders who need a lot of practice time before they can establish consistent profitability.
ThinkMarkets offers a wide choice of trading options for forex traders including:
- The MetaTrader 4 platform, used by multiple other forex brokers
- The proprietary ThinkTrader platform
- The ThinkTrader Web trading platform, which can be accessed from anywhere with an internet connection
- The ThinkTrader Mobile trading apps for Android or iOS or BlackBerry operating systems
The following is a screenshot of the ThinkTrader interface:
Under ThinkForex, the company used to offer the cTrader platform along with its algorithmic cAlgo interface. However, with the rebranding of ThinkForex to ThinkMarkets, the cTrader offering has been replaced with ThinkTrader.
ThinkMarkets has the following additional features:
Social trading and copy trading with MyFXBook's AutoTrade platform. This allows a trader to copy the trades of another trader if they believe the copied trader will have better performance. The historical performance of available traders to copy can be reviewed in advance of copying them. While this has the potential to work well, it also has the potential for scams as described in our article about forex scams.
The AutoChartist platform, for advanced market scanning and analysis
Broker reviewed: ThinkMarkets
Review date: 2017-01-14
Rating out of 5: 4.0
Reviewed by: Forex Scam Alerts Google+