Different Types of Forex Brokers

A Forex broker is just an intermediary which gives you access to the Forex Interbank market and executes trades on behalf of their clients. Regardless of the fact that all Forex brokers supply the same basic service, we can distinguish different types of brokers. Before you start to choose your preferred Forex broker, it’s important to understand that not all Forex brokers are the same as they’re structured on different trading models. Our team at Trade Forex MY has put together a comprehensive list of our Forex Brokers here.

The Forex Brokers can be separated into two major categories:

  • Dealing Desk Brokers (DD) or Market Makers;
  • Non-Dealing Desk Brokers (NDD) which can be divided into two categories:
    • Straight Through Processing (STP);
    • Electronic Communication Network + Straight Through Processing (ECN+STP);

Types of Forex Brokers

Different Types of Forex Brokers

Dealing Desk Brokers

Dealing Desk Brokers are also called market makers, which means the broker sets their own price rates for currency transactions. In essence, a Dealing Desk Broker will fill their clients’ trades by taking the counterparty of the trade. This means the Forex Broker trades against its own client base.

In a Dealing Desk environment, there is obviously a conflict of interest because the Forex broker makes money not just from charging you a spread but he can also profit from your losing trades. However, the main benefit of a Dealing Desk Broker is that it requires a very low amount of money to open an account with.

Non-Dealing Desk Brokers

The Non-Dealing Desk market environment is designed to give you true pricing and true execution with no price re-quotes. A Non-Dealing Desk Broker will automatically offset and then transfer your orders directly through the Interbank market. This allows you to bypass dealing desk and only trade against the market.

Unlike the Dealing Desk Broker, a Non-Dealing Desk Broker will not keep clients’ orders internally, which means there is no conflict of interest. However, the main disadvantage of a Non-Dealing Desk Broker is that the minimum amount to open a Forex account is usually higher.

ECN Forex Brokers

ECN is derived from Electronic Communication Network and is a trading network focused on execution of currency transactions in a direct manner. The price quote you receive from your Forex broker is derived directly from the Interbank market. An ECN broker will give traders the opportunity to interact with each other as the buy and sell transaction are matched by the liquidity providers.

The main benefit of using an ECN Forex Broker is the fact that you have access to the Interbank market, but the main disadvantage is that if there is not enough liquidity to execute your order, you’ll often get re-quotes.

ECN+STP Forex Brokers

STP is derived from Straight Through Processing and this type of Forex Brokers operates in a Non-Dealing Desk environment. An STP Forex broker basically operates the same way as an ECN broker does, but the only difference is that it’s processing your orders in a more efficient way. Unlike an ECN broker, an STP broker can also act like a Market Maker if your order cannot be executed in the Interbank market. This will ensure that your order will not get re-quotes and you will almost certainly you’ll get your order filled.

The main disadvantage of an STP Forex Broker is that you’ll receive dynamic spreads that can vary and are conditioned by the market volatility and market liquidity.