If you live in the UK, you can participate in binary options trading. This is a method for trading stocks, indices, commodities, and currency pairs without the requirement of ownership. That is, you can place trades on these assets, profiting from accurate predictions on their price movements, without owning the assets themselves. It’s important, however, to work through reputable UK binary options brokers that have proven to be trustworthy, consistent, and reliable.
Is It Legal To Trade Binary Options In The UK?
The short answer is yes, it is legal. You can trade binary options legally. Of course you must always check your local laws and ordinances to make sure there is nothing specifically preventing you from investing your money as you see fit. The better question to ask is not if it is legal, but if binary trading is illegal. Inherently things are legal, it is only when made illegal that you are breaking the law by doing it. So, is it illegal to trade binary options from the UK? The answer is no, it is not illegal. You can make trades from the UK at a number of legal and legit UK binary options brokers.
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Who Regulates UK Binary Options Brokers?
Just because a binary options broker accepts UK traders does not mean that broker must adhere to rules established by UK regulatory agencies. In fact, a majority of companies are headquartered in the Republic of Cyprus (an island located east of Greece) to avoid such restrictions. Cyprus is known to have relaxed rules with regard to binary options and other financial transactions.
One way to minimize the risk of fraud when trading binary options is to work with brokers that are subject to regulations. The actors in any regulated market are accountable for their conduct while operating their businesses. But as you’ll see below, regulating binary options brokers in the UK is not a simple matter.
Firms headquartered in Cyprus are overseen by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CYSEC). CYSEC reportedly adheres to rules set by the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFiD). This is an important distinction from firms that are headquartered in the UK. Such companies are regulated by the Financial Services Authority (FSA), the UK’s watchdog agency.
It is also worth pointing out that UK binary options brokers can choose whether to be regulated under financial or gaming regulations. This is important because gaming regulations, in the context of “fixed odds betting,” are typically more relaxed than financial regulations. So, a broker might decide to seek a license from the gaming regulatory agency outside the host country if the country’s financial regulatory arm (e.g. FSA) is too strict.
Regulation Reduces Fraud Among Binary Options Brokers in Britain
There are advantages to working with binary options brokers in the UK that are subject to close monitoring. We suggested earlier that a regulated market is less likely to be plagued with rampant fraud. Because the actors are usually required to report transactions on a daily basis, there is less opportunity for cheating, embezzlement, and other shenanigans.
A second advantage is that you’ll have more confidence in your broker. Because there is less risk of fraud, you’ll feel more inclined to increase your trading volume. Lacking that confidence, you might be leery to deposit large sums with your broker; you may fear that your money might somehow disappear. This is less of an issue in regulated financial markets.
UK Binary Options Brokers With Local Offices / Headquarters
There are very few binary options companies in the UK that are regulated by the Financial Services Authority. Instead, most firms are headquartered in Cyprus or Malta, and maintain offices in the UK for local exposure and to provide customer support.
UK Phone: +44 203 355 7204
24Option offers returns ranging between 70% and 85% (returns can scale up to 300% on some instruments). You can trade stocks, commodities, currency pairs, and indices, using a variety of option types, including 60 second options. 24Option also provides a feature that allows you to close your contracts early. They require a minimum deposit of $250 and $24 minimum trades. Visit 24Option.com today to take advantage of a 100% bonus match up to $500.
Banc de Binary
UK Phone: 0-800-051-5780
28 rue de l’amiral Hamelin
Paris 75016 France
Banc de Binary is one of the most recognizable names in the binary options trading industry. They offer returns up to 81% with contracts covering a wide range of assets. Though the firm is headquartered in the U.S., they maintain satellite offices in numerous countries throughout Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. When you register an account with Banc de Binary ($500 minimum deposit), you’ll be given access to a demo trading account. You’ll also receive a welcome bonus up to $5,000. Visit bbinary.com to open your account.
GFT UK Limited
UK Phone: +44 20 7776-7676
138 Cheapside London,
EC2V 6BJ United Kingdom
GFT is regulated by the FSA. You can trade options for commodities, indices, and currencies on a user-friendly platform that displays information in an easy-to-digest format. Contracts are offered as CFDs (Contracts for Difference Derivatives) and Financial Spreadbets to comply with FSA regulations. Visit GFT.com for more details.
UK Phone: +44.203.318.5986
Also regulated by the FSA, OptionFire offers returns up to 81% on contracts covering dozens of assets. They also provide a 10% rebate on out of the money trades. The trading platform is simple to a fault; some experienced binary options traders complain that it omits important data. New accounts receive a welcome bonus starting at 25% of the initial deposit. Visit OptionFire.com for more details.
Binary Options Brokers Open To UK Traders
A number of legitimate binary options brokers welcome UK traders, but are not headquartered in the UK, nor do they maintain an office in the country. We include them on this page because each has proven to be trustworthy and reliable.
UK Phone: 0-808-189-1458
21st Floor P.C. 3082,
TradeRush uses a binary options platform that offers returns up to 81% on touch/no-touch, high/low, and 60 second options. You can trade dozens of assets from the four common asset classes: stocks, currency pairs, indices, and commodities. You’ll also receive a rebate (up to 10%) on select out of the money options. TradeRush gives you access to several special features, such as Double Up and Early Close. Visit traderush.com to register your account and get started.
UK Phone: 0-800-917-4606
Estias 11B Ilioupoli Dali,
AnyOption delivers the lowest returns of any broker on our list (65% to 71%). But they also provide a large 15% rebate on all out of the money trades. You can trade a large number of assets, including dozens of stocks and indices, with a minimum trade amount of $25. One drawback is that AnyOption does not currently offer 60 second options. This could change in the future as 60 second options become more popular. Visit anyoption.com to open an account and start trading.
UK Phone: +44-20-33550067
Alexandrou Business Centre Omirou 76,
Limassol 3096 Cyprus
To start, we don’t necessarily recommend TraderXP. Although at the time of writing, they welcome UK binary options traders, there have been reports of customer support issues. Until we’re confident those issues are in the past, we mention TraderXP merely as an example of a binary options broker outside the UK that remains open to traders living in the UK. If you’d like to find more information, visit traderxp.com
If you want to start trading binary options and are uncertain about which broker to use, start with a few of the firms on this page. (Again, we recommend avoiding TraderXP for now.) Even though most of them are unregulated by the Financial Services Authority, we have found them to be reliable and consistent. Hence, we feel comfortable adding them to our short list of legitimate binary options brokers.