Best Forex Brokers India for 2023
Trading forex is increasingly popular in India, but it’s also heavily regulated, and the path to trading forex in India isn’t always straightforward.
As a general rule, it's best to use a broker regulated in your country of residence. However, due to restrictions on locally regulated financial institutions in India, the only way for local citizens to speculate in the forex market is to use a foreign broker — such as those on our list — that accepts clients who reside in India.
The Securities and Exchange Board of India, or SEBI, is the financial regulatory body in India. The SEBI was established in 1988 as a nonstatutory body and given powers with the SEBI Act 1992. Read more about SEBI history on its Wikipedia page.
CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. Between 65% and 82% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.
Best Forex Brokers India
To find the best forex brokers in India, we created a list of all brokers that accept new customers from India and ranked them by their Overall ranking, calculated during our in-depth annual review of forex brokers. This exacting analysis of more than 100 variables includes our proprietary Trust Score (more on Trust Score below).
Here is our list of the best forex brokers in India:
- FOREX.com - Excellent all-round offering
- Admiral Markets - Great for MetaTrader
India Forex Brokers Comparison
Compare forex and CFD brokers that are authorised in India, side by side, using the forex broker comparison tool or the summary table below. This broker list is sorted by the firm's ForexBrokers.com Overall ranking.
In addition to our top picks above, we've reviewed and rated several more brokers who accept residents of India as clients, included below.
|Accepts IN Residents
|Average Spread EUR/USD - Standard
|Libertex (Forex Club)
Is your broker safe?
Choosing a regulated broker is crucial for avoiding forex scams, and the country where your broker is regulated is equally important. Traders should always consider all licenses a broker may hold across its various global entities and brands.
Our Trust Score, a proprietary algorithm, ranks those regulatory agencies into three groups, with Tier 1 indicating the most stringent financial regulators and Tier 3 the least strict. We currently rank SEBI as a Tier 2 Jurisdiction.
Our data collection on each broker results in a ranking from 1 to 99 of the broker's overall trust. The higher a broker's Trust Score, the better. Learn more about Trust Score here.
How to verify SEBI Authorisation
To identify if a forex broker is authorised by the SEBI, the first step is to identify the registration number from the disclosure text at the bottom of the broker's homepage. For example, here's the key disclosure text from Interactive Broker's website,
INTERACTIVE BROKERS (INDIA) PVT. LTD. is a member of NSE, BSE [http://www.sebi.gov.in]. Regn. No. SEBI Registration No. INZ000217730; NSDL: IN-DP-NSDL-301-2008. CIN-U67120MH2007FTC170004. Registered Office: 502/A, Times Square, Andheri Kurla Road, Andheri East, Mumbai 400059, India. Tel: +91-22-61289888 / Fax: +91-22-61289898.
Next, look up the FSP number on the financial register available on the SEBI's website to validate that the broker is currently authorized in India.
Is forex trading legal in India?
Yes, but unless you are just exchanging cash at the airport while traveling through India, most SEBI-regulated brokers that offer forex trading will be limited to exchange-traded forex products (such as currency derivatives). For example, Interactive Brokers is regulated by the SEBI and offers exchange-traded currency derivatives in India, but doesn’t offer traditional forex (i.e. non-deliverable spot) to Indian residents.
Forex trading in India is highly regulated when it comes to the physical exchange of one currency for another (where actual, physical delivery of the currency takes place) and is legal when done so by a SEBI-regulated broker. On the other hand, residents of India will have a hard time finding a way to trade non-deliverable spot forex from a margin account.
Many residents of India use SEBI-regulated brokers to invest in local exchanges such as the National Stock Exchange (NSE) and the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), while foreign brokers that accept clients from India are the only option for investors who are looking to trade forex in India.
When retail traders are speculating on the price of forex by using currency pairs, no physical currency is delivered, and thus many foreign brokers accept clients from India even if they don’t hold regulatory status with the SEBI.
Still, if you are a resident of India and you are considering trading forex using a foreign broker, make sure they are highly regulated. As recently as September 2022, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has warned against dealing with foreign brokers that aren’t locally regulated. Additionally, the Central Bank of India has restrictions in place that can make it difficult to deposit and withdraw funds with foreign forex brokers that are not regulated by the SEBI.
What is forex?
Forex, short for foreign exchange, refers to the trading or exchanging that takes place in international currency markets, in which one currency is bought or sold in return for another foreign currency. The goal for forex traders – and it's a tricky one – is to profit by accurately predicting fluctuations in value.
There are various types of participants in the forex markets: retail and institutional traders, large corporations, banks, and central banks that help regulate monetary policy, such as when printing money that enters circulation.
There are at least two sides to every forex trade. On one side is a buyer, and on the other side a seller. Forex market participants either have a need for the particular currency, such as for business use or hedging risk; or are speculators taking an investment position expecting the price to move in a favorable direction.
For example, let's say you have U.S. dollars and expect their value to go down and want to sell them in order to buy euros for an upcoming trip to Europe. Or maybe you expect the euro price to go higher relative to the U.S. dollar and are looking at it as an investment.
Either way, you pay for the euros with your U.S. dollars and agree to exchange the dollars you have for the euros at a specific price (the price can be quoted either in euros per dollar, or dollars per euro). Such a trade can result either in a profit, loss, or break-even, depending on the price when you exit the trade and any fees incurred.
Commonly traded forex pairs include the euro and U.S. dollar (EUR/USD), British pound and U.S. dollar (GBP/USD), euro and Japanese yen (EUR/JPY) – among a slew of other popular combinations.
Forex trading is mostly decentralized, though it does take place on regulated exchanges. In most developed countries forex brokers must hold proper licenses with financial market regulators, to help ensure compliance with local laws and regulations.
Is forex trading safe?
As with most forms of trading or investing, forex carries risk. Beyond the market risk (when the market simply moves against you), it’s also important to consider counterparty risk – when the other side or “party” to your trade fails to uphold it’s part of the trade and/or defaults (for example, if your broker goes bankrupt).
When deciding if trading forex is right for you – or “safe” – the answer will largely depend on your available investment budget, your tolerance (or appetite) for risk, and on the trustworthiness and fiancial stability of your broker.
This includes the broker's integrity and reliability, but also its level of capitalization and its financial capability to protect itself and the money they hold on your behalf, especially in the extraordinary event of a market anomaly.
How to trade forex in India?
To trade forex as a resident of India, you will either be working with a SEBI-regulated broker that offers exchange-traded currency derivatives or with a foreign broker (preferably regulated and trustworthy) that offers retail forex from a margin account.
We’ve put together some important first steps to take if you want to get started trading forex in India:
- Decide whether you want to trade off-exchange forex – also known as over-the-counter (OTC) – from a margin account with a foreign forex broker, or if you prefer exchange-traded currency derivatives (i.e. a listed product).
- Choose your forex broker; make sure it’s highly regulated to reduce your chances of falling victim to a scam broker.
- Consider the available payment methods, and choose the method that will serve you best for depositing and withdrawing funds from your broker.
- Open and fund a live brokerage account with an amount you can afford to risk, and then practice trading with a demo account to learn the trading platform software and mobile trading app.
- Identify your trading goals and work towards developing a trading plan. Consume as much educational content as you can (your broker is usually a good place to start) to make informed choices about how to structure your trading plan.
- Test your trading strategy with live funds, using an amount that you can afford to risk.
When testing trading strategies, make sure to focus on the percentage returns before scaling your strategy to take on higher potential risk/reward levels.
What is the best forex broker in India?
IG is our top pick for Indian citizens who are looking for a forex broker that offers forex and CFDs, and also accepts residents of India as clients.
If you specifically want a broker that is also regulated in India, Interactive Brokers is a top contender, as it is a member of the National Stock Exchange, Bombay Stock Exchange and the Securities Exchange Board of India, or SEBI. However, due to regulatory restrictions, Interactive Brokers does not offer forex or CFDs in India.
If your interests lie in stock trading, Interactive Brokers remains an excellent choice due to its access to local stock exchanges in India and 90 international markets, including bonds, stocks and ETFs (including some forex-related exchange-traded products, such as listed currency derivatives).
What are the best apps for forex in India?
After evaluating forex brokers that accept clients from India, we’ve concluded that the following brokers provide the best mobile apps for forex trading. All of these brokers provide mobile trading apps that feature advanced charting, a rich variety of sophisticated trading tools, and an easy-to-use platform:
- IG- IG Trading mobile app, IG Academy.
- Saxo Bank - SaxoTraderGo mobile app.
- Interactive Brokers - IBKR mobile app and Impact app.
- FOREX.com - FOREX.com mobile app.
- AvaTrade - AvaTradeGo mobile app and AvaOptions mobile app.
- IC Markets - MT4, MT5 and cTrader mobile apps.
- Capital.com - Capital.com mobile app, Investmate app, and MT4.
Like to trade forex on the go? Check out our in-depth guide to mobile forex trading here, where we’ve tested and scored the forex trading apps of over 40 of the top forex brokers.
Does Zerodha support forex?
Though Zerodha is regulated in India, it only offers currency derivatives (including forex futures and options on currency futures) that are listed on regional exchanges such as the NSE and BSE. Like most brokers that are regulated in India, Zerodha does not currently offer traditional spot forex trading from a margin account.
That said, Zerodha and internationally regulated brokers such as Interactive Brokers do offer currency derivatives on the NSE in India, including futures and options on the following pairs for cross currencies – including pairs that contain the Indian Rupee (INR):
Is OctaFX approved by the RBI?
OctaFX is not a SEBI-regulated broker, and the brand has attracted attention locally after sponsoring the IPL Cricket Team in Delhi in 2021, and appearing on the RBI alert list alongside other popular brokers – many of which are regulated in countries outside of India. The RBI's latest alert list was updated to include numerous international brokers, some of which are highly regulated, and some that may lack regulatory licenses of any kind.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) periodically puts out warnings to the public about foreign brokers that are not regulated in India by the SEBI. According to the RBI, the list identifies entities that are not authorized to to operate electronic trading platforms under the Electronic Trading Platforms (Reserve Bank) Directions, 2018, or to deal in forex under the Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999 (FEMA).
According to the research we conducted for our full-length review of OctaFX, OctaFX is considered a high-risk broker with a Trust Score of 67 (out of 99). OctaFX is regulated by just one Tier 2 jursidiction: the Cyprus Securities & Exchange Commission (CySEC) in Cyprus. Visit our Trust Score page to learn more about the regulators we track, and how we calculate a broker’s Trust Score.
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2023 Review Methodology
At ForexBrokers.com, our reviews of online forex brokers and their products and services are based on our collected data as well as the observations and qualified opinions of our expert researchers. Each year we publish tens of thousands of words of research and detailed forex guides, and we monitor dozens of international regulator agencies (read more about how we calculate Trust Score here).
Our research team conducts thorough testing on a wide range of features, products, services, and tools (collecting and validating thousands of data points in the process). We test all available trading platforms for each broker – whether they are proprietary or come from third-party providers – and evaluate them based on a host of data-driven variables.
We also take an in-depth look at each broker’s commissions and fees, such as bid/ask spreads – including the average spread data for some of the most popular forex currency pairs. We research other trading costs, such as inactivity or custody fees, minimum deposit requirements, VIP rebates and/or discounts, and a range of other important fee-based data points.
Some of the other important research categories that are factored into our testing include mobile trading accessibility and capability, availability of market research and educational content, and each broker’s overall Trust Score.
Read our full explanation and accounting of our research and testing process to learn more about how we test.
Forex Risk Disclaimer
There is a very high degree of risk involved in trading securities. With respect to margin-based foreign exchange trading, off-exchange derivatives, and cryptocurrencies, there is considerable exposure to risk, including but not limited to, leverage, creditworthiness, limited regulatory protection and market volatility that may substantially affect the price, or liquidity of a currency or related instrument. It should not be assumed that the methods, techniques, or indicators presented in these products will be profitable, or that they will not result in losses. Read more on forex trading risks.