Beware! ABN 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.
ABN Markets is a pretty shady broker. The only thing we can say for sure about ABN Markets is that it is not licensed by a reputable regulatory institution. We couldn’t say for sure that it’s a scam, but we don’t have any good arguments that it isn’t either. In short – it’s probably not a good idea to trust ABN Markets with your money. Let’s see exactly why and what alternatives you have.
ABN MARKETS REGULATION AND SAFETY OF FUNDS
When you visit the website of a legitimate broker you can expect to find clear and detailed information about the company that owns and operates it, where it is based and what regulatory regimes it is subject to. Licensed financial services providers are also required to provide a comprehensive set of legal documentation.
According to the homepage of the website, the owner of this broker is a company called ABN Markets Pty D.O.O Budva.
A contact address in Montenegro is listed.
Although forex trading in Montenegro is legal, there are no strict regulations in this country. Furthermore, we could not find anything about ABN Markets in the database of the National Bank of Montenegro.
If you are unsure exactly who you are dealing with and do not know what terms you are agreeing to, it would be unwise to put your money on the line.
If you have decided to invest in financial instruments, and especially if you are a novice trader, you should use the services of a licensed broker based in a jurisdiction with strong regulations.
Depending on your location, it is advisable to choose a company that is regulated by an institution such as Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) in theUS, Australian Securities and Exchanges Commission (ASIC), UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) or some EU regulator like Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC).
Clients of these brokers receive protections such as negative balance protection and segregation of the client’s funds from the broker’s funds. In the EU and the UK, brokers must also participate in guarantee schemes that cover a certain amount of the trader’s investment if the broker becomes insolvent. These guarantees amount to up to 20 000 EUR in the EU and 85 000 GBP in the UK.
However, the likelihood of such a bankruptcy is low because regulators also have significant net capital requirements that companies must maintain – EUR 730 000 in UK and Cyprus, AUD 1000 000 in Australia and at least 20 million USD in the United States.
ABN MARKETS TRADING SOFTWARE
ABN Markets offers the industry standard MetaTrader 4 (MT4) platform. But we were not able to test the functionality of the software. The demo account option in the ABN Markets trading platform itself is disabled.
While ABN Markets claims to offer easy registration of a Demo or Live account, this is not the case. A potential customer must submit a request to be approved by the website administration. In writing this review, we did not receive such approval.
It should also be noted that the website has an account registration form, but no way to log into an existing one. This is unusual and suspicious to say the least.
There are more than enough licensed brokers offering clients the MT4 experience and/or the newer version of the software MT5. These platforms have established themselves as industry standard because they offer a wide range of features, including a variety of options for customization, multiple account usage, designing and implementing custom scripts for automated trading and backtesting trade strategies.
ABN MARKETS TRADING CONDITIONS
Legitimate forex brokers usually offer a variety of trading account types tailored to the needs of clients with different capital and investment intentions. These brokers also provide clear and detailed information on trading parameters – leverage, spread, commissions, order execution method, etc.
We do not find descriptions of different account types on the website. There is also no information on specific tradable assets, commissions and order execution method.
Only a minimum deposit of 100 USD and a leverage of 1:200 are specified.
For the same or often lower amount you could open an account with a licensed broker – and we recommend you do so.
The high leverage is also proof that ABN Markets is not a regulated broker.
High leverage creates the opportunity for more significant profit, but correspondingly increases the risk of sudden and excessive losses. All leading regulators therefore restrict leverage for retail traders. A maximum leverage of 1:30 is allowed in the European Union and the United Kingdom and 1:50 in the United States.
Regulated brokers offer higher leverage only to professional clients who must meet very high standards for capital and experience and forgo the guarantees enjoyed by retail traders.
If you don’t qualify as a professional trader but are willing to take the risk of high-leverage trading, the most viable option is to use the services of an offshore affiliate of an established brand.
ABN Markets also claims to offer high bonuses. This is also a practice banned by most financial regulators. Scammers often use promises of supposedly generous bonuses to tie their potential victims to extortionate terms.ABN Markets does not provide clear information about the conditions attached to bonuses.
ABN MARKETS DEPOSIT/WITHDRAW METHODS AND FEES
We had no way of establishing what payment methods ABN Markets offers.
For their part, scammers and shady brokers use opaque payment methods that prevent refunds or chargebacks from being requested. In the most common case, these are cryptocurrencies.
Since ABN Markets does not provide proper legal documentation, it is unclear what traps the fraudsters may have set. Typically, fake brokers make withdrawing money impossible through huge fees and impossible-to-fulfil traded volume conditions.
HOW DOES THE SCAM WORKS
Scammers who promise easy money without any effort are nothing new, especially on the internet. But given the excitement around bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in recent years, malicious actors have run rampant more than ever, capitalizing not only on people’s desire to solve their financial woes with a magic wand, but also ignorance and misunderstanding of how blockchain and complex financial instruments actually work.
If your curiosity is stirred by one of the many flashy websites promising easy riches, and you provide your contacts, you will soon be contacted by skillful and persuasive scammers who will convince you to start with a relatively small and “risk-free” investment. If you agree to this, you will be transferred to even more skilled at convincing scammers, who will persuade you to invest even more. Any money you give to such people is money you are unlikely to get back.
Any attempt to withdraw deposits or alleged profits will be hampered by numerous and significant fees, as well as harsh and often prohibitive conditions written into the terms and conditions – such as high trading volume requirements, unexpected “taxes”, or withdrawal fees as high as 10% or even 20% of your funds.
WHAT TO DO WHEN SCAMMED
Recovering money you have given to fraudsters is difficult and often impossible. Fraudsters always want you to provide them with documents such as a copy of your ID and proof of address so that they can claim that it is a legitimate transaction, agreed voluntarily between both parties. If the transaction is made by credit or debit card, you can request a cashback and hope for the best, but transactions via wire transfer or cryptocurrencies are not refundable. It is important not to trust online offers from people who offer to recover your money in exchange for an upfront payment, because this is also a well-known scam.