Beware! Platin Markets is an offshore broker! Your investment may be at risk.
RECOMMENDED FOREX BROKERS
Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Open trading accounts with at least two brokers.
Platin Markets is a broker that offers trading in forex, stocks, commodities and cryptocurrencies. They have six types of accounts that differ in terms of minimum deposit requirement – from €250 to €100,000, and the welcome bonus that comes with the account:
We registered for an account by providing our names, email address, phone number, address and currency – USD or EUR, and upon success were navigated to the client area. There was no email confirmation sent to our mailbox, however – a big red flag as every website, especially one providing financial services, will make sure there is an email engine implemented on their website.
Platin Markets Regulation and Safety of funds
Platin Markets promises that traders can achieve 99% successful trades on their platform – check it out:
Of course, this is an empty promise – every broker, even offshore ones, includes in smaller text a Risk Warning that presents the facts more truthfully: “There is a possibility that you may sustain a loss equal to or greater than your entire investment.” Another thing we see in the footer of the broker’s website is that they have 2 different addresses – one in Scotland, UK and one in Ireland.
The UK address and registration number checks out – there is such a company, but its nature of business does not involve any financial services; it is listed as “Other business support service activities not elsewhere classified.” What is more important, however, is that UK forex brokerages must be licensed and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in order to operate in the UK, whereas Platin Markets claims to be “under regulation of: Lebrn.com.” A check in the FCA database revealed that the broker is not certified by them.
Lebrn.com turned out to stand for “Latvia euro broker register number” and is some kind of pseudo-registration service that admits on their website that “Responsibility for uploaded documents remains with the applying company!”; in other words they do not do any due diligence or verification. We advise our readers to select brokers that are licensed by established, recognized regulatory bodies.
The FCA in the UK or the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC) have a number of rules and policies to guarantee the broker’s financial stability, eg. Minimum Capital Requirements of 730,000 EUR, and to safeguard their customers’ investments – Compensation Schemes in the event of broker insolvency (up to 85,000 GBP in the UK and 20,000 EUR in the EU), Client Account Segregation designed to keep clients’ money separate from the broker’s operating funds, and Negative Balance Protection – traders may not lose more than the funds they have invested.
Platin Markets is not a regulated brokerage and there is a big chance that they are involved in a scam that you will not be able to get your money back after you invest with them.
Platin Markets Trading Software
The broker offers the MetaTrader 4 (MT4) platform as a Desktop application, downloadable from the client area. MT4 is the world’s number one platform, preferred by more than 80% of users. It offers an intuitive and user-friendly interface, sophisticated charting and analysis tools, as well as copy and auto-trade options. It can be further customized to create different trading strategies using its proprietary MQL4 programming language. MT4 is usually available as a web-based and mobile (iOS and Android) application too, but not with Platin Markets.
Instead the broker presents a web-based trading software, Webtrader, which is very far from professional standards in terms of design and functionalities. Actually, it does not offer even a fragment of the features established platforms provide, not even a Demo account – take a look.
Platin Markets Trading Conditions
The broker does not provide many details about the trading conditions offered. In the Webtrader screenshot above we see a 0.1 pips spread for EURUSD, which is quite competitive, but considering the nature of this software we cannot be sure these are real trading conditions. Regulated brokers generally provide spreads between 1 and 1.2 pips for this most traded currency pair – anything wider would make the cost of trading high for the traders, and will guarantee good profits for the brokerage.
In the client area one can change their leverage up to 1:1000. Trading on leverage can be tricky as it entails significant risks, especially to inexperienced traders. Although it allows for making bigger profits, one may incur great losses too, often much greater than the invested funds. That is why, most regulatory authorities impose leverage caps for non-professional traders: in the USA it is 1:50, while for brokers licensed in the EU and the UK it is 1:30. The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) also started restricting leverage for major currency pairs to 1:30 from March 29, 2021.
Platin Markets Deposit/Withdrawal Methods And Fees
Although on the website we find a number of logos for major credit cards and bank transfer, in the client area there are only a couple of obscure e-wallets – GameChangers and PayCent. This is a common tactic of scammers – to make you think they offer standard deposit and withdrawal options, while actually they are using unverified methods. Other popular options, such as PayPal and preferred by traders e-wallets, eg. Skrill and Neteller are also not supported.
The minimum deposit and withdrawal amounts are not excessive, although there are many regulated brokers that offer micro accounts where you can trade with as little as $10. From the accounts screenshot we saw that the minimum deposit amount is €250, while in the legal documents we read that the minimum withdrawal amount for wire transfers is 250.00 USD/GBP/EURO and on any other method is 100.00 USD/GBP/EURO.
What is most disturbing, however, is the huge withdrawal fees the broker charges – check it out:
Not only that – there is a dormant account fee also: “If you did not login and traded from your account within three (3) months, your Account will be subject to a deduction of 10% each month.” Considering everything we see about this broker, we would warn our readers not to invest money with Platin Markets, as there is a big chance it is a scam broker and their money is not safe with them!
How does the scam work?
The usual scam operates on a multi-level, though very basic model. The users will be tempted to click on an Internet ad promising quick and easy profits. If they do, it will take them to a website that will ask for their personal details, including email address and phone number. Once they submit this information, an avalanche of emails and phone calls will be unleashed. Scammers will promise the world to these potential traders in order to induce them to make an initial deposit between $200 and $300.
These “brokers” will get a fat commission from the deposited sums and will transfer the unsuspecting users to “senior” scammers. The latter are smooth talkers who will try to persuade users to invest more funds, using phrases like “now is the right time” and “the moment is perfect for making hefty profits”. Of course, these are empty words, and traders will soon have doubts whether they have not been played.
When they try to withdraw their money, these doubts will be confirmed: the con-artists will do anything to deny or at least delay their withdrawals. From trying to convince the traders that they are making a big mistake to withdraw funds now because they will lose big profits, to asking for additional documents or citing clauses in the accepted agreements, to transferring you to another department, there is a single objective to delay the users from filing for a chargeback with their financial institution and lose any chances of recovering their money.
What to do when scammed?
Anyone can fall prey to such a scam. In the unfortunate event this happens to you, there are a few things you can do. If you deposited using a credit card you should immediately file for a chargeback. In an effort to combat online fraud VISA and MasterCard have extended the period in which one can file a chargeback to a year and a half, so there is a big chance that you may be able to recover your funds. If however, you used a bank wire or bitcoin to deposit, chances to get your money back are almost none.
We should also warn against “recovery agencies” who prey on victimized traders by claiming they can recover their funds. These scammers will ask you to pay a fee for this service, but will only take your money and do nothing.