Stock and Forex trading have grown in popularity in Malaysia enormously in the last decade due to the technological advancement which involved all the region. If you are new to this sector or if you are an unsatisfied Malaysia-based trader, this guide will show you the best trading options available in the country.
But before we start with our top 4 list of the best brokers in Malaysia for stock and Forex trading, we think it should be useful to share with you the main criteria which made this list possible.
Before You Start
To start trading in a financial market, you will have to open a trading account with a broker.
Once chosen a broker, this process requires close to no effort, and it is quite the same all over the world. And Malaysia is not an exception.
To open a trading account on the Malaysian soil it will be required to show:
- A proof of identity: such as in the case of passport (preferred) or any other form of recognized ID (e.g. driving license)
- A proof of residence: such as in the case of a bank statement, or any other official document which includes your current address
Finish this procedure and you’ll be ready to trade worldwide.
To be considered trustworthy, a brokerage service must be regulated by an independent regulatory body. All the brokers presented in this guide are regulated by at least one major financial regulator.
Trading Platform Implemented
If you open a trading account with a broker, it will give you access to one or more trading platforms.
Those kinds of platforms are also included in a subscription with a broker, and can differ quite much between them.
With that being said, we may divided those platforms in two main categories:
- Proprietary trading platforms: they are trading platforms owned, scripted and developed by the brokerage service which is letting you open a trading account
- Mainstream trading platforms: they are trading platforms not owned or developed by the brokerage service and refer to the mainstream trading platforms available on the market. That’s the case for those platforms developed by MetaQuotes, such as MT4 or MT5.
Trading Techniques Available
Every broker and every platform have strong and weak points, and we should make our choice taking them in consideration and levelling everything to our trading techniques and style.
There are many different kinds of traders nowadays, and each one of them tend to use one or more techniques which are not always implemented properly on a platform, or even not allowed in the country where they are based.
That’s the case for example for those who usually use scalping techniques or Day Trading.
Top 4 Stock/Forex Brokers In Malaysia
Now that all of you have a clear view on what are the main characteristics to consider a broker the top in their category, by following the same criteria we will share our personal top 4 of the best brokers available in 2021 in Malaysia.
- IC Markets
Our top of the list is taken by what is considered to be one of the most important brokerage services not only in Malaysia, but in the entire world.
IC Markets is an Australia-based online broker which became famous on international scale thanks to the variety of their services and a top level of work in the markets where they operate as an intermediary. With more than 14 years of experience in this sector, they will give you the chance of choosing one of their trading accounts in order to start trading. Those include:
- cTrader Account: it is used in order to access the broker’s proprietary platform, the cTrader, it has access to 0.0 pips and a leverage up to 30:1. In order to open this account you will have to do a minimum deposit of $250, it implements the #C programming language and it’s chosen usually by Day Traders & Scalpers.
- Raw Spread Account: it is used in order to access MetaTrader platforms, it has access to 0.0 pips and a leverage up to 30:1. In order to open this account you will have to make a minimum deposit of $200, it implements the MQL4 programming language and it’s chosen usually for EAs & Scalping techniques.
- Standard Account: it is used in order to access MetaTrader platforms, it has access to 1.0 pips and a leverage up to 30:1. In order to open this account you will have to do a minimum deposit of $200, its programming language is MQL and it’s usually chosen by Discretionary Traders.
- Islamic Account: they present most of the aforementioned features, with the main difference that they pay for a fee instead of SWAP or interests.
This broker presents a high level of speed and execution while trading with their account and their services are employed all over the world to trade in many major financial markets and different access. As of today, you can use on of the aforementioned account to trade with:
- FX pairs
IC Markets also give their customers the chance to use Copy Trading and other automated trading features.
- Regulated by: ASIC, CySEC, Offshore
- Trading Platforms Available: cTrader desktop, cTrader web, Mirror Trader, ZuluTrade, MT4 Desktop, MT4 Web, MT5 Desktop, MT5 Web
- Leverage: yes
- Minimum Deposit Required: $200
- Saxo Bank
Saxo Bank is a Danish investment bank founded in 1992 and open to many brokerage services.
This broker has won many awards and the services offered are distinguished from the competition for their high professional standards worldwide.
As of today, this broker is not only one of the top brokers in Malaysia, It also offers brokerage services in many parts of the world and has offices in more than 13 different countries across the world.
They are regulated by top tier regulatory bodies and have implemented during these years many features in order to protect clients and their funds. These include the use of segregated bank accounts to protect customer’s money in case of an unlikely bankruptcy and a negative balance protection, so that a trader will not lose more money than those deposits in the account. ICF coverage is not available for traders based outside of European Union or the UK.
The accounts presented with their offer are:
- Demo Account: a free-risk kind account which gives you the possibility of using every trading feature included in a classic account, with the main difference of using a virtual balance.
- Saxo Bank Classic: minimum deposit required for this account type changes significantly depending on your country, and it goes from $500 to $10,000. In Malaysia’s case though, it requires 3,000 SDG. With this account you will be able to use over 40.000 financial instruments and have access to low spreads that are at 0.8 pips.
- Saxo Bank Platinum: it requires a minimum deposit of $200,000 and gives a huge discount of 30% on any trading cost, with tighter spreads and commission fees. With this account, you will also have access to a priority customer support in your language.
- Saxo Bank VIP: it requires a minimum deposit of $1,000,000. With a VIP account you will have a personal relationship manager able to speak in your language and a direct line with Saxo Bank market experts, plus all the aforementioned features included in other account types.
- Saxo Bank Joint Account: with this account you will be able to pen an account alongside someone else in order to trade together. Once you choose to trade with another person, you can opt for the Classic, Platinum or VIP account.
As of today, Saxo Bank does not have the option to open an Islamic Account and all of their accounts charge swap fees, which is haram according to Sharia.
With that being said, once you start trading, you will have access to many different financial markets and assets, included:
- FX Pairs
- Mutual Funds
They are also API friendly and offer proprietary trading platforms in order to trade in the markets.
- Regulated by: FCA, ASIC, MAS, UAE, FINMA, FSA, SFC (HK)
- Trading Platforms Available: proprietary trading platforms, MT4, MultiCharts
- Leverage: yes
- Minimum Deposit Required: 3,000 SDG
- TD Ameritrade
Ameritrade is a US-based stock and Forex broker whose foundation goes back to 1975. While being a mainly-American broker, they have started to expand in Asia too, until they became to the point of being one of the most regarded and appreciated brokers in Malaysia.
It is regulated by SEC and CFTC, two of the most important regulatory bodies in the States, therefore is considered a safe choice as a broker worldwide.
TD Ameritrade trading accounts comprehend:
- Standard Account: it can be an individual or a joint account and can be upgraded to upper level in order to trade in different markets while being still a standard type account.
- Margin Trading Account: it allows you to borrow money from TD Ameritrade and potentially increase your securities buying power by as much as 50%
Their superb desktop trading platform enables you to trade with some of the lowest spread available, and is free of charge for stock and ETF trading. Markets available in their offer are:
- FX pairs
- Mutual Funds
- Bonds & Fixed Income
Ameritrade adopted a free withdrawal policy and does not have a deposit fee.
- Regulated by: CFTC, SEC
- Trading Platforms Available: Proprietary Desktop Platform, Proprietary Web Platform, MAC platforms
- Leverage: yes
- Minimum Deposit Required: $0
Remarkably relevant in Europe, Israel and Australia as a retail broker, eToro has become a common choice also in Asia, especially in Malaysia.
Started in 2008 as a retail Forex broker, they have many offices around the world and are regulated by some of the most important regulatory bodies across continents.
This broker gained international fame mainly because of the innovative concept brought in this sector: the Social Trading.
Social trading is a mix of concepts taken mostly from social networks and added to the online trading world. As a result, they create an environment between their trader community where every asset is treated as if it was almost a social post or a tweet, with the important difference of being financially relevant.
Close to this concept there is the enormous implementation of the eToro social trading platform of the Copy Trading feature. Thanks to this feature, any trader can copy another trader and open every position opened in that trader’s portfolio until then and in the future.
To start investing with an eToro trading account you will have to start with at least a minimum deposit of $200, but their choice in terms of accounts is quite diversified as we can see. It comprehends:
- Standard Account: it gives you all the standard features of the broker and requires a $200 minimum deposit.
- Islamic Account: it complies with Islamic laws and does not charge a swap fee. It requires a $1,000 deposit.
- Professional Account: it gives you access to many additional benefits, including a dedicated account manager, higher leverage (up to 400:1), and way more competitive spreads and fees while trading in the Forex market. Additionally, because of the fact of being a professional trader, your negative balance protection will be retained.
- eToro Club: it’s a new addition made by the broker and is basically a premium program that gives you access to special perks based on your account level, which can be divided by membership status.
As of today, thanks to an eToro account you will be able to invest in hundreds of assets and markets, which include:
- FX Pairs
Thanks to all the aforementioned features and quality, this brokerage service is considered a particularly user-friendly platform, therefore it may be the best option for new traders which never approached this world.
- Regulated by: FCA, CFTC, MIFID-ESMA, ASIC, CYSEC
- Trading Platforms Available: Proprietary Web Platform
- Leverage: yes
- Minimum Deposit Required: $200