Best CFD Trading Platforms UK

Traditionally, investing meant buying shares in a particular company and waiting for the stocks’ value to rise enough to be worth selling before things went south. Once you buy, you own stocks and will typically wait months or years before selling them all off.

If you prefer a fast-paced betting system of working the market, you may want to try CFD trading. With CFD (contract for differences) trading, you’re not purchasing any underlying asset. Instead, you place bets on whether an asset will go up or down, and you earn based on whether you are correct.

If you’re ready to test this sort of trading for yourself, you’ll need to work with reliable CFD trading platforms. They will give you favourable leverage and charge you the spread for handling all the contracts for you. But not all platforms perform comparably, and some distinctions hold for traders in the UK vs elsewhere.

Not sure who you should have handling your trades? Check out these top CFD trading platforms in the UK.

#1 eToro — Best Overall CFD Trading Platform UK

eToro has been a trusted source for trading since 2007. With strong regulations and protection for UK citizens, you can start CFD trading with peace of mind. Opening an account is easy and fast to do when you have all the tools you need to jump into CFD trading.

Features

  • 47 forex pairs
  • FCA regulation for UK citizens
  • Negative balance protection
  • Stop-loss options

Pros

  • Easy-to-use interface. Easily switch between CFD and underlying asset investments with ease.
  • Copy positions. If you want to trade more passively and skip the extensive research and predicting, you can copy other portfolios of people you trust to make good bets.
  • Educational resources are available. New to the world of CFD trading platforms in the UK? Use the educational tools available to learn the ins and outs of the market quickly.

Cons

  • Higher price. Watch out for higher spreads, inactivity fees, and deposit/withdrawal fees. However, VIP accounts are available that will discount your deposit and withdrawal fees.
  • High minimums for copy trading. If copy-trading draws you to the platform, be aware that you’ll likely need to place higher deposits.

Verdict

If you’re looking for a reliable and easy-to-use platform, you can’t go wrong with eToro. It is one of the most popular CFD trading platforms in the UK. Enjoy excellent investor and negative balance protection from the UK and Australia-based company.


Pepperstone —Best CFD Forex Trading Platform in the UK

Based in Australia and London, Pepperstone has been trading since 2010 with great success for investors. The platform specialises in CFDs, with few underlying asset investments available. For those passionate about CFDs with little interest in other forms of trading, this is a great plus.

Features

  • 62 forex pairs
  • FCA regulation for UK citizens
  • Negative balance protection

Pros

  • No extra fees—No inactivity, deposit, or withdrawal fees. You can make the best decisions for your portfolio without worrying about paying for them.
  • No minimum deposit. Deposit what you can and start contracts immediately.
  • Easily contact customer service. If you ever do have a problem, the customer support team has several communication channels you can use, such as phone, live chat, and email.

Cons

  • Data is limited. Although Pepperstone has excellent education materials, the raw, up-to-date data is limited. You may need to use 3rd party recommendations and rely on copy trading if you’re not familiar with the market.

Verdict

Pepperstone is one of the best CFD trading platforms in the UK for traders seeking a low-cost platform. That said, it’s also bare-bones. If you’re looking to add CFD trading to your portfolio and want a platform that also does non-CFD trading, this may not be right for you. However, for those who want to commit to the fast pace of the CFD world, you’ll love working without expensive fees while getting the most options for CFD trading.


XTB — Best UK CFD Trading Platform for Beginners

Similarly to Pepperstone, XTB specialises in CFD. However, it has more comprehensive offerings than many other competitors. Quickly switch between contracts for differences and underlying asset investments with ease. With the educational materials available, you’ll still learn everything you need to know to become an expert in your chosen niche.

Features

  • 57 forex pairs
  • FCA regulation for UK citizens
  • Negative balance protection

Pros

  • Best educational materials. Learn everything you need to know about the market with handy tutorials, webinars, a demo account, and complete tutorials. If you’ve never traded in the market, this could be your one-stop shop for your market education.
  • Low CFD fees. Some other platforms will have low fees for crypto, then charge an arm and a leg for CFDs. Not with XTB.
  • Price alerts. Stay up-to-date on everything happening on the market and be notified about any assets.

Cons

  • No guaranteed stop-loss. Most platforms offer this to UK citizens, but not XTB. With other platforms, you’ll immediately sell if your losses reach a set low. This protection isn’t included with the XTB platform.
  • No physical crypto. Fall in love with cryptocurrency through CFD and want some of your own? You’ll need to move to another platform.

Verdict

While there may be a bit more risk due to the lack of guaranteed stop-loss, you’ll quickly know why XTB is one of the best CFD trading platforms in the UK. It’s one of the easiest apps to use, features great resources and copy trading available, and has low fees. Make a demo account and see for yourself without spending any money.


Plus500 — Best User Experience

If you want a platform that’s easy-to-use and great to look at, you’ll love Plus500. In addition to the design, it has many Forex pairs for trading and all the financial protection we’ve come to expect from the top CFD trading platforms in the UK.

Features

  • 71 forex pairs
  • FCA regulation for UK citizens
  • Negative balance protection
  • Stop-loss guaranteed

Pros

  • 24/7 customer support. No 48-hour wait to get the help you need. Speak to a customer service agent from Plus500 fast and take care of your portfolio as you need.
  • Easily avoid inactivity fees. There are times you may need to take a step away from CFDs. When you do, simply logging into your account each month will keep you from paying pesky inactivity fees.
  • Excellent mobile app. Seamlessly transition from your desktop to your phone and take your CFD trading on the go.

Cons

  • No copy trading. Not having access to copy trading could be a significant loss for those new to the market. You’ll need to rely on 3rd party resources to get ideas for choosing your CFDs.
  • No webinars. While the platform provides educational materials, they don’t offer webinars, which can help you learn even more about the market and make predictions.

Verdict

The lack of interactive training materials and copy trading could be a dealbreaker for newcomers. But with Plus500, you certainly feel taken care of: customer support is always available; the desktop and mobile app user interface are easy to use, and you can start with a low minimum deposit.


How to Choose the Best CFD Brokers UK

There are many platforms available, but how do you know which CFD trading platforms in the UK are the right choice for you?

Here are some things you should consider:

  • Payment options. For depositing and withdrawing, make sure it offers support for your choice of payment — direct bank transfers, credit cards, PayPal, etc.
  • You want two forms of protection: proper regulation and investor protection. For UK citizens, we look for the FCA (Financial Conduct Authority). You’ll also want to consider negative balance protection, stop-loss guarantees, and other guarantees they may offer.
  • A reliable platform will share its fee structure upfront. Look at if there’s a commission fee, if they only charge the spread, fees for inactivity, deposits, withdrawals, or holding a position overnight. If it’s too difficult to find the fee structure, or they charge too high a price, look for better CFD trading platforms in the UK.
  • Educational resources. Get insights, analysis, and guidance to strengthen your predictions and profits.

When you find the platform that meets all your needs, try a demo account and see for yourself if you like it. If it passes the demo test, it’s time to invest.

How to Start with a CFD Trading Platform

To get started on CFD trading platforms in the UK, you’ll first need to make an account with the site. It will ask you to confirm your identity and set up a payment method for deposits and withdrawals. Once you make your first deposit, you can pick a CFD.

Perhaps you have a Forex pair or asset in mind. Maybe you want first to do some research on the educational reference tools. Once you select, decide how much you want to put down and at what price and follow the instructions. Voilà, you’re trading!

Start CFD Trading Online

Ready to see if your market insights earn you money? Sign up with one of these top CFD trading platforms in the UK, and start working the market like a pro.