Beware! Citi Fx 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.
If you want to trade forex pairs, stocks indices or other assets, then Citi Fx is certainly not a good choice. This broker falsely claims to be regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority of the UK, however this turned out to be a straight-up lie. The truth is that Citi Fx is not authorized to offer financial services and is operating against the law.
Moreover, it offers a very risky leverage of 1:500, so there is no way that this firm could be licensed in the UK, as the leverage there is restricted to 1:30. Not to mention that in order to register, you have to contact the customer support first – another red flag for scam. For more details on why you should stay away from Citi Fx, keep reading the full review.
Regulation and safety of funds
Citi Fx claims to be registered in London, the UK. It also claims to be regulated by the local Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and provides a license number as well. All may seem credible to an inexperienced trader, however a simple search in the registers of FCA brought this broker’s true identity into light. In reality, Citi Fx is not authorized to offer financial services therefore acts outside the law. See for yourself:
But if you think that it can’t get any worse, just wait for it. In fact, the license number that Citi Fx displays as its own, actually belongs to another firm with the name Equals Money PLC. So apparently the broker we are dealing with used the number on purpose just to look reputable to unwitting investors.
Stay away from such shady brokers by all means. The damages they can make are numerous and aren’t worth the risk of getting scammed out of your money. Because this is exactly what fraudsters aim – to rip off uninformed traders and then melt into thin air. As FCA warns, no financial authority would be able to help you in case things go wrong, so it’s actually up to you to choose a reliable broker.
Always look for a licensed firm with a proven reputation. Usually genuine brokers display all the essential information like address, legal documentation and the jurisdiction that oversees their activities. This data can be easily verified in the registers of the relevant authority. These brokers are trustworthy not only because they are constantly supervised, but also because they must meet a ton of requirements as well. For example all regulated brokers in the UK must have at least 730 000 EUR of net capital and must also keep their client’s funds in segregated accounts. But maybe the best part is that if you trade with a UK licensed broker, then your money is going to be protected in case of the company’s insolvency – the compensation is up to 85 000 GBP.
Citi Fx claims to offer its own trading software and describes it as “the best platform” with “sophisticated order management tools”. Unfortunately there is no way to preview the platform or to open a demo account.
But that’s not all. It turned out that the registration process is also quite unusual. You can’t just fill in a registration field. Instead you have to reach out to the customer support so that they can “help you through”. This seems rather suspicious as it’s typical for scammers. Usually fraudsters want to contact you first in order to bamboozle you. This way they can also hide some drawbacks in their trading conditions or platform until you register and make a deposit. Unfortunately, sometimes the victims realize that they have been deceived when it’s too late.
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Citi Fx claims to offer four types of accounts – Silver, Standard, ECN and Business. Take a look at some of them down below:
The Silver account requires 1000 USD in order to start trading, which is quite a lot. Usually legitimate brokers ask for around 250 USD or even less – micro accounts require as little as 10 USD. So what Citi Fx offers isn’t advantageous at all and certainly isn’t worth the risk of getting scammed.
The leverage of 1:500 for the Silver account is also way too high and risky and it gets even higher with the rest of the accounts. The Business one promotes a leverage of 1:5000! Needless to say that this volume is insane and almost certain to fail you. Not to mention that the leverage in the UK is restricted to 1:30 because of the associated risks – one more proof that this broker can’t possibly be licensed there. Still, if you want to trade with higher leverage we suggest looking at some of the offshore subsidiaries of reputable forex brokers.
As for the spread, there is no information to be found anywhere on the website. And since we couldn’t register, we simply don’t know what spread this broker really offers. However we highly doubt it to be favorable for you. For a safe trading experience better choose a legitimate broker who offers tight spreads below 2 pips.
Deposit/Withdrawal methods and fees
Citi Fx also doesn’t specify what payment methods it accepts. This is yet another warning sign, as most legitimate brokers usually thoroughly describe what to expect from them.
Nevertheless, better not trust this broker at all. No surprise if it offers crypto transactions as the only possible payment method, just like the rest of the scammers. Remember that payments with crypto coins like Bitcoin or Ethereum are proven to be completely anonymous and irreversible, so there is no chance to retrieve your stolen funds or to prove anything. For this reason and everything said so far, we advise you to avoid this bogus website.
How does the scam work
Remember that financial scammers are only interested in your money, not in your trading or financial success. They happen to come upon new ideas on how to deceive people every day. Unfortunately despite the efforts of all financial institutions there are still a lot of offshore brokers that claim to invest your money in the best possible way but in fact aim to steal everything. The worst part is that they use various techniques to win your trust and to make sure it’s almost impossible for a beginner to tell them apart from a reputable broker. Here’s a list of their most common tricks you should watch out for.
First of all, scammers tend to offer incredibly high return on investment. They assure you there’s nothing to worry about, as trading with them is easy as a, b, c. Offshore brokers might even promise they can handle the trading for you and your only job is to relax and wait for the “fantastic results”.
Bear in mind that scammers can manipulate their trading platform and make it seem as if your funds are being invested, but in reality no such thing happens. They also can fake your trading results thus making you believe they have been very profitable – this is made to make you invest more and more, because your trading is “so successful”.
Scammers might also claim that trading with them is risk-free and so on. That is another ridiculous lie – reputable brokers even tend to display on their website the exact amount of trading losses as a warning.
Furthermore they might offer you some kind of bonuses just to make you invest right away. Don`t believe them however as such promotions usually come with a very high volume requirement that is a challenge even for experienced traders.
Another scam alert is the presence of a certain fee upon any withdrawal request – this fee may start from 10%, 20% and go higher depending on the broker. It’s important to know however that most regulated brokers don’t usually ask for a fee in order to allow withdrawal.
Nevertheless even if you decide to pay the fee you still won’t have access to your money – with most scam firms this scenario is very likely to happen. You may realize that a withdrawal is impossible – no matter if it comes to your initial deposit or the so-called “profits”. So finally you may end up losing everything plus the paid fee.
What to do when scammed
Most people that have been scammed usually try to take some actions to retrieve their stolen funds. Unfortunately in such cases you can’t really turn to any official financial institution as offshore brokers` actions are not overseen by any regulator. So a regulatory body can’t help you here. What most people do in such circumstances is to turn to people on the internet who promise to retrieve their money in exchange for a certain fee. This is probably the worst thing you can do, actually. These people are most certainly also fraudsters who want to take advantage of your despair and steal even more of your funds. It may even turn out that they are the same scammers that already deceived you.
The best possible thing you can do is to turn to your bank and file for a chargeback if you used your Visa or MasterCard. If you have paid using PayPal or Skrill you can also open a dispute. Paying with crypto coins like Bitcoin and Ethereum is not eligible for a chargeback as we already said and the funds cannot be restored.