Launched in 2013, TradeDirect365 is a leading, Australian Forex and CFD brokerage providing OTC financial products to retail and wholesale traders all over the globe. Significantly, TradeDirect365 stands out from many Australian CFD providers, for its low commissions, tight 24-hour fixed spreads and low margin requirements. We were impressed to see that TradeDirect365 offers around 10,000 trading instruments from Australian, UK, European and USA stocks as well as commodities, global indices and currencies. What’s more, customers at TradeDirect365 are given a choice of two user-friendly trading platforms for desktop and mobile trading on the move. These are the web-based CloudTrade platform developed by TradeDirect365 for easy and efficient trading, and the MetaTrader4 platform, the enduring favourite of forex traders everywhere. Moreover, TradeDirect365 does not have a minimum deposit requirement for opening live trading accounts, and free demo accounts are available with one click. TradeDirect365 is the trading name of Finsa Pty Ltd, an Australian company regulated by ASIC, operating with the Australian Financial Services Licence number 422661.
Whilst TradeDirect365 offers personal and non-personal trading accounts, our focus in this review is on personal accounts for private, retail traders. Significantly, TradeDirect365 does not stipulate a minimum opening balance requirement on live trading accounts and gives access to trading leverage up to 1:200. However, funds must be deposited to the live trading account before live trading can start. Moreover, a minimum cash balance of AUD $100 must be maintained in the TradeDirect365 live trading account and should the balance fall beneath $50, the account may be closed.
Traders who want access to live data feeds for the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) are required to pay a monthly fee of AUD$27.50 to TradeDirect365. Nevertheless, the fee is waived if traders make four single leg or 2 round-turn CFD trades in a calendar month, with stocks selected from the ASX. Order types available for traders at TradeDirect365, include Trade Orders at real time quotes, Limit Orders and Stop Loss orders with margin calls made at 20%. Importantly, we saw that traders are not automatically protected from negative cash balances and are obliged to pay negative cash balances immediately to TradeDirect365.
TradeDirect365 Demo Account
A demo account at TradeDirect365 can be set up in seconds with just a name and Email address. Importantly, the demo account is free of risk as it operates on a copy of the live trading platform. We saw that traders get $10,000 of virtual funds to practice trading on the TradeDirect365, CloudTrade platform. Conveniently, traders can have a demo account running in parallel to a live trading account, allowing them to test trading strategies in the virtual environment, before executing the strategies on the live platform.
TradeDirect365 Fees and Commissions
The highly competitive schedule of fees for CFD transactions are clearly set out in the PDS and Market Information Sheets on the TradeDirect365 website. We saw that all individual share CFDs (except US shares) are charged commission depending on the country of listing. Whereas, for individual US shares CFDs, TradeDirect365 calculates a dealing spread price by deducting 2 cents from the bid price and adding 2 cents to the market offer price. For other individual share CFDs, we saw that commission rates are calculated on the contract value of both the opening and closing trades and don’t usually exceed 0.1%.
Impressively, ASX CFD commissions start from $5 and only when trade values exceed $7,150 is a commission of 0.07% charged. For products with no commission charges, customers pay dealing spreads that vary across markets. However, traders can see the spreads on the ‘market information’ page on the broker’s website. Notably, forex spreads for major currency pairs including AUD/USD, are fixed at 0.8 pips with no added commissions. Moreover, traders investing in the Australia 200 index benefit from 24 hour fixed spreads from 0.9 pips are fixed for 24 hours on the Australia 200 index. We also saw that TradeDirect365 offers guaranteed stop-loss orders where fees are charged only when the stop is triggered.
Trading Software & Assets
Traders at TradeDirect365 can choose from two types of trading platform for trading forex and CFDs: The MetaTrader4 and the proprietary CloudTrade platform. However, customers can also phone the 24-hour trading desk and place orders over the phone.
TradeDirect365 MetaTrader4 Platform Features
The MT4 is a popular forex trading platform renowned for a broad range of trading tools including charts and technical indicators. Importantly, the MT4 incorporates support in multiple languages and is straightforward to use. Nevertheless, the TradeDirect365 MT4 platform is not web based, but the software needs downloading to desktop or Mac. Significantly, the TradeDirect365 MT4 lets clients execute trades flexibly and cost-effectively with competitive commissions and spreads across all markets.
TradeDirect365 CloudTrade Platform Features
The simple and functional CFD platform developed by TradeDirect365 is very easy to use as it’s designed for intuitive trading. Importantly, the CloudTrade platform features the complete range of trading instruments offered by TradeDirect365 and 24 hour fixed spreads on forex currency pairs and no commissions. Moreover, traders can trade short on all the listed shares and potentially profit from falling prices. We were pleased to see a ‘how-to’ guide explaining every aspect of trading with the proprietary platform through a series of video tutorials. The tutorials are very easy to follow and go through the whole trading process, from how to find trading instruments, place trades, use watchlists and customise charts, as well as place stop loss orders, guaranteed stop loss orders and close trades.
CloudTrade Mobile App
The TradeDirect365 CloudTrade mobile app gives traders access to the trading platform at any time from an iOS or Android powered mobile device. Importantly, the mobile app does not support a demo account. The app is available free from the Google Play Store and from the Apple App Store.
TradeDirect365 provides a broad range of educational material on the website to help clients understand CFDs and forex contracts. We saw that before new customers are given access to the live trading environment, they must pass a qualification test. Clients who don’t pass the test are asked to practice on the demo platform before repeating the test and activating the real money trading account.
TradeDirect365 Customer Support
TradeDirect365, has a comprehensive FAQs page on the website with straightforward answers to every question we could think of about trading with TradeDirect365. Nevertheless, we found the quality of customer support provided by TradeDirect365 impressive. Clients can request support through multiple channels, 5 days a week, from Monday to Friday. We saw that the Trade Desk operates 24 hours a day, whilst regular office hours are from 9 am to 5 pm on weekdays. For trade enquiries, customers can either Email, or phone the Trade Desk on a toll-free telephone number if they live in Australia or on a separate international number for customers abroad. For general enquiries and support, TradeDirect365 provides clients with access to a help line over the live chat function on the interface, as well as phone and Email support during office hours. Australian clients can phone a toll-free number, whilst customers outside Australia are given a separate payable number to phone.
Banking & Company Information
The base currency of all trading accounts at TradeDirect365 is the Australian Dollar. Conveniently, customers can deposit in their national currencies and the funds are converted to AUD at the exchange rate of the bank used by TradeDirect365. Moreover, clients’ funds are segregated securely in top tier banks. We were surprised to see that TradeDirect365 specifies only two payment methods for funding trading accounts on its website. These are bank transfer/wire available to clients all over the globe (fees rarely exceed $20) or BPay available only for Australian residents. However, it may be that additional funding options are available and only offered when clients register live trading accounts with TradeDirect365.