In this IQ Option Review, we will do an in depth analysis of one of the biggest Binary Option brokers in the industry. We will take a look at the trading platform, customer service and regulatory oversight. The FXaxe reviewers also decided to delve into the Binary Options community to gather as much information as possible on IQ Option.
IQ Option has been operating as a broker since early 2013. Since then, we have observed how the broker has grown their online presence and reputation. Many traders would also be aware as to efforts that IQ option has gone to furnish their brand. They are sponsors of the Aston Martin racing team and have no doubt garnered lots of interest from motor sport fanatics.
The FXaxe reviewers also tried out the IQ option trading platform and posed as potential traders. This allowed our team to get a good sense of the way IQ option would treat their traders and how successful traders could be on their platform.
High / Low, Dynamic Option, Classic Option, Forex & CFDs
Option Expiry Times
60 seconds to 24 hours
iOS & Android
First Impressions of the Site
When we first arrived at IQ option we were surprised at how simplistic the initial landing page was. There was relatively little clutter and no overt marketing gimmicks. This is something that we usually find to be a positive attribute given the amount of brokers who spam their landing pages with selling points. Clearly IQ option knows that their product can do the selling.
When it comes to registration on the site, it is relatively straight forward and only requires some basic information. You can either choose to first start trading as a demo account or you can deposit the relatively small minimum amount of only $10. This at first startled us as we had never seen a broker with such a small minimum deposit requirement.
Our demo traders invested $50 as we thought that this was enough for us to get a sense of the trading platform and the customer service.
IQ Option Trading Accounts
Another thing that really surprised us about IQ Option was there account options. Unlike many other Binary Option brokers, IQ option decided to keep it simple with only two different account options. Although this may be disappointing for those traders who valued a VIP service, IQ Option clearly wanted to see all traders on the same level.
They were of the view that all traders should be respected and treated with the same amount of care irrespective of their investment size.
Real Account. This is one step up from the demo account and can be accessed with the minimum investment of only $10. With this account, you can request withdrawals and they are processed within 24 hours. You can also partake in the numerous trading competitions that they have at IQ Option. There are no restrictions on trading functionality with the real account and the trader has access to over 70 assets to trade.
VIP Account. One level up from the real account is the VIP account. This is available to all traders who deposit more the $3,000. Apart from all the standard features that come with the Real account, the VIP account also comes with a personal manager. This manager stands at the ready to help out traders with general account questions. One interesting benefit that we found comes with the VIP account is a monthly report on your trading record by their analysts. Nothing is more important than understanding your returns and how different strategies have worked.
Deposits and Withdrawals
IQ Option takes a number of payment options when it comes to funding your account. These include Master Card, Visa, Web Money, Skrill, Cash U, Neteller and Wire Transfer. The deposit amount depends on the account type that your are considering opening. If you are only interested in the Real account then you only have to deposit a minimum of $10.
Although you can elect to trade on the $3,000 VIP account, you have to first be comfortable with your trading before you consider investing more than you are willing to lose. What we would recommend is investing about $100 and then measuring your performance over the first few months. This will mean that you can best understand your expected return from accounts with more funds in them.
IQ Option prides themselves on how many withdrawals that they have processed over the past year. This was impressive but we wanted to see this in action for ourselves. When we requested a withdrawal from IQ Option, they acknowledged our request and told us that it had been forwarded to their payments team
In order to prevent possible money laundering, the IQ Option team requires proof of identity and address. Assuming that all of these documents are in place, the trader can request payment using the same methods that he used to deposit the funds. Once complete, the withdrawal is done in under 24 hours. You can also request a withdrawal amount anywhere from $2 up to $1 million.
IQ Option Trading Platform
Unlike many Binary Option brokers, IQ Option has chosen to develop their own proprietary platform. The seamless navigation on the IQ Option platform really impressed us. This allowed a trader to easily locate the tools that they needed on the fly. IQ Option claims that the platform was developed by traders for traders. It does indeed feel like that.
We also liked the fact that traders had a range of charting tools such as Bollinger bands, Momentum and moving averages. Despite this added functionality, the platform still seems uncluttered which is indeed a dream for an avid technical chartist. The platform is also pretty easy to understand and all of the functionality included does should not deter new traders who are merely finding their feet.
There are over 100 assets to trade on the platform including Commodities, Equity, Forex and stock indices. In terms of expiry time, the Options range from 60 seconds all the way on to end of day. This allows the trader to hone a day trading strategy that best suits their timeframe.
Unfortunately, the platform does not allow for an early termination of the trades. However, given that the minimum investment per trade is only $1, early termination is not really worthwhile assuming investment amount is not considerable. When entering trades we also found the trades are registered really quickly. This means that the trader can implement a number of scalping strategies. IQ Option call this “turbo” trading.
IQ option has also decided to withdraw their Robot Trading system for traders. Although this may be disappointing for those traders who would like to use algorithms to trade. We do, however, have a number of alternative trading robots for you to try.
IQ Option also values international traders who’s language is not English. That is why the IQ Option platform has been translated into at least 13 different languages. In fact, IQ Option were one of the first brokers who started offering their services in Russia.
On top of the standard Binary Option offering, IQ option allows traders to trade classical American Options. These are essentially options that have all of the benefits of the Binary Option (limited downside) but do not cap the upside.
Many traders have issues with Binary Options as the payout often does not warrant the amount that has been staked on the trade (not 1 to 1). Hence, with the American options the trader has the benefit of an infinite upside.
The American option at IQ Option can also be traded on a at least 100 different assets from stocks to commodities and equities. They are also traded on an exchange and external liquidity provider. This means that you are probably getting the best prices that you can for the options.
Another great benefit of an American option over a Binary Option is that the option can be exercised prior to expiry. Binary options function like a European option in that exit can only be done on the expiry of the option. This places a winning trade at a disadvantage.
However, if you like the benefits of large payouts on binary trades that are far out of the money, that is where the IQ Option digital options come in handy.
Another great feature of the IQ Option platform are there digital options. These are essentially a combination of a binary option and a CFD.
They allow the trader to choose the expiry rate on the PUT or CALL option that they like. This means that they could target rates that are either currently in the money or are significantly out of the money.
The contracts that are significantly out of the money would allow the trader to make considerably more money on their initial investment. Some of these accounts have returns that are as much as 2,000%.
Of course, unlike traditional binary options or European Options, digital options allow the trader to exit the position before expiry of the trade. This means that the trader could indeed realise their profit early should the trade have been in the money.
However, unlike CFDs digital options only have a maximum defined loss. This means that the trader will only ever lose the initial investment that was required for the option investment.
This is why digital options may be the ideal alternative for those traders who would like the high return and early exit benefits of a CFD with the defined downside risk of a binary option.
IQ Option CryptoCurrencies
As anyone who is following the financial markets must know, Cryptocurrency looks to be taken over in a big way. IQ Option was one of the first option brokers to start offering a range of Crypto Currency CFDs.
We have previously covered tips around how to trade bitcoin and how to trade ether but IQ Option offers at least 10 other alt coins for you to trade. These include Bitcoin Cash, Dash, Ethereum Classic, Monero, Zcash, Omisego, Ripple, Litecoin and IOTA.
This will allow the trader to make some really high returns on these volatile assets. It is also worth noting that because they are so volatile, the trader should take extra caution and make certain that they have adequate and strong stops in place. Currently, IQ Option does not offer leverage on their crypto currency pairs.
We also asked someone at the IQ option team whether there were any other plans to include more Crypto assets on the platform. They confirmed that the moment more trading demand picks up in some other alt coins, they will be added to the platform. This is something that we are quite excited about.
IQ Option Mobile Platform
The IQ Option Mobile Application really stood out for us. It does indeed seem as if IQ Option has invested a considerable amount of money on the mobile functionality. The app is really easy to use and has a clean and relatively simplistic graphical interface. However, traders still have most of the charting options that they have on the standard platform.
When using the mobile charting feature, the trader can easily adjust the time horizon, plot trend lines as well as resistance and support levels. Moreover, unlike many of these other application, trades are entered just as quickly as they are on the web application. This means that you would be able to catch trends and reversals in an optimal time frame.
The app also keeps you up to date with the trading by push notifications. You can set key trading levels and the application will alert you to a breach of these levels. This means that no matter where you are you can enter a profitable trade.
IQ Option Regulation
IQ Option is owned and operated by IQ Option Europe Ltd. It is regulated by CySec (Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission) with registration number 247/14. When a broker is regulated by CySec it means that they are authorised to sell their products to clients in the EU. The FXaxe reviewers were impressed with the transparency with which the broker operates on a holding company level.
If one were to take a look at IQ Option’s terms and conditions, you can see that they take their regulation very seriously. For example, when CySec started to outlaw bonuses on deposits last year, IQ Option was one of the first brokers to do away with it.
It also seems as if IQ Option has taken additional steps that are not really required by CySec to shield their clients. These include policies on how client funds are secured as well as withdrawal policies and privacy policies. Indeed, many traders may find IQ Options initial documentation as quite onerous but this is all to make certain that both the trader and IQ Option are protected in the case of any disputes.
Although customer service was quite responsive and helpful via email, there was quite a delay in the response. It is also quite unfortunate that there is no live chat and phone support. This meant that if there was a pressing issue with our account (such as security), we could not urgently get in touch with the broker.
Traders can of course elect to get the VIP account and this would allow them to make use of the personal account manager. However, traders would need to invest $3k in order to benefit from this service. Although we would have liked to have seen better responses from IQ Option we can only assume that this was as a result of the sheer volume of traders on the platform and it was not a something we worried about.
Education and Training
One place where IQ Option really shined for us was their training and education materials. Firstly, the demo account is a great way for new traders to learn the ins and outs of trading without risking it on the market. This demo account gives you “virtual” funds to trade. This is usually $1,000 and you can place virtual trades.
Indeed, a popular “scam” tactic that is used by Binary Option brokers is to offer a demo account that has different trading levels than a real account. This means that the trader would be duped into thinking that the trading is way more profitable than it actually was.
The team at FXaxe opened a demo account and traded on a real account to confirm that the levels were indeed consistent. We can confirm that IQ Option is completely honest and transparent with their demo accounts. The trading conditions on the demo account are exactly the same as those of the real account.
Yet, this is only where the training starts. Once you have invested, you have access to all of the interactive training materials on offer. These include a number of trading strategy videos, webinars, tutorials and a number of e-books. These training materials are also well suited to traders of different skill levels from a complete beginner to advanced traders.
IQ Option Trading Competitions
Something that we found quite refreshing were the trading competitions that IQ Option had available. Traders are by their nature really competitive and this was a great way for them to test their skills against other traders. Apart from the numerous prizes on offer, these Binary Option tournaments also bring a great deal of light hearted fun to trading.
There is a small entry fee that is required in order to partake in the tournament. They happen regularly and are usually about 30 minutes in length. This means that the trader does not have to spend too much time on the competition. When you sign up for the competition, you are given $10k in virtual funds (similar to the demo). At the end of the 20 minute competition, the trader with the highest returns wins the prize.
The prize sometimes depends on the number of people who have entered that particular tournament but it can also be fixed on some occasions. The trading competition also allows you to “buy in” again to the tournament once you have depleted your demo funds. This will then replenish your 10k demo funds and allow you to continue trading similar to an extended game of poker. The tournament can also be quite lucrative as prize money is sometimes up to 100x the entry fee.
In order to get a better sense exactly of how the tournament worked, a member of the FXaxe team signed up to one. We founds it really quite exciting especially when you start climbing the rankings. It also involved quite a bit of psychology as our trader needed to anticipate the strategy and returns of the other competitors. Hence, one could adjust how aggressive they wanted to be based on the position of the other traders.
IQ Option in the Press
As we have seen, IQ Option seems to really value their public image. Apart from the obvious publicity that comes from sponsoring the Aston Martin racing team, IQ Option has received a number of broker awards from the community. For example, IQ Option recently won an award from MasterForex-V for being the most reliable brokers on the market.
They also won an award from Show FX World for being the most innovative Binary Option broker. Unlike most brokers who claim to be “industry leaders” with no verifiable record, these awards are indeed from reputable sources and added more confidence in our view of IQ Option.
In conclusion, our reviewers were quite impressed with IQ Option and hence awarded it such a high ranking. It is quite rare for us to come across a broker that we find ticks most of our boxes in terms of transparency, regulation and functionality.
The platform and trading application is functional enough for professional traders while being simple enough for beginners learning their craft. This most likely came down to the unique design of the platform bespoke to the needs of IQ Option and the traders it collaborated with.
While on the platform, we found the trading to be smooth and effortless. Moreover, the trading competitions were an interesting add on that really intrigued our reviewers.
There were a few noted drawbacks of course. Firstly, IQ Option only has two account levels. Traders who wanted to get more extensive interaction from a dedicated account manager may be disappointed with this. We also found the lack of chat or telephone support to be unfortunate especially for urgent queries.
Lastly, IQ Option is not available to people who are resident in the United States, Canada, Israel and Japan. You can read more about binary and forex brokers which are regulated to offer services in these jurisdictions.
However, if you are a trader who is not in one of these countries and wants to use the most innovative and time tested broker on the market, then IQ Option is one of your best bets. It gets our FXaxe stamp of approval.