How did I first hear about Osprey fX?
I came across a Facebook advertisement for a seemingly new brand, so thought I would have a read up about them.
What was my first impression of them as a broker?
Since I hadn’t come across many comments in regards to this brand other than the Facebook adverts, my opinion remained very neutral as I could only assume this is a relatively new broker to the industry, especially judging by the lack of traction I saw on their Facebook page at the time I discovered them.
How easy is it to navigate the broker website?
The website is clearly set out, for easy navigation but the design itself in my opinion is a little messy and somewhat unprofessional and exerts a ‘gaming’ vibe. Nevertheless, the website contains all the elements you would expect to see, and they do not appear to hold back from withdrawing information that should be available to clients, especially prior to signing up. It was also refreshing to see a decent FAQ page, and key points in regards to trading conditions, set out openly on the homepage.
Do they offer a good variety of tradable assets?
Osprey FX offer a fair range; Forex, Cryptos, Metals, Energies, Futures, Indices, and a wide range of stocks. This is a wide range of tradable instruments, and there is a fair enough variety to satisfy most traders, especially those that like to diversify their portfolios.
Do they offer different account types and what are the benefits?
When I looked on the website, it appeared that Osprey FX offer 4 different account types: Standard, PRO, VAR and Mini. However, when I asked their live chat for further clarification, and from my understanding, I was advised that there is only 1 MT4 account, and depending on which instrument pair you are trading, they can fall under the 4 different categories, determining the commission you are charged, or not, and the minimum spread type will vary also. I found this highly complicated and required further explanation.
It seemed the handful of live chat support representatives were not fully aware of what they were attempting to explain to me, as one live chat agent told me there were 4 account types, and the next told me there was just the one, and all 4 ‘types’ were under the same MT4 account. In conclusion, there is one account, but depending on which forex pairs you trade, they can be found under the four categories, which would determine the commission charge and spread. As much as this maybe a slightly innovative way for a broker to structure their accounts I feel it leaves the trader in a position of exposure and vulnerability as these commissions could jump around more than a box of frogs!
How competitive are their spreads?
Osprey FX display live spreads on the website itself and on the whole they appear to be relatively competitive. However as stated above this confusing manner with how they flick between account types for forex pairs makes it difficult to analyse.
I also took the opportunity to ask a live chat agent who their liquidity provider is, and was advised they aggregate from multiple providers, those being Lmax, Charter Prime and Bitfinex. These are all good names and this added weight to the legitimacy of this broker, knowing they receive prices from known and trusted sources.
What is the maximum leverage they offer?
As per the website display, the maximum leverage Osprey FX offer is 1:500. I wanted to check this was applicable to all tradable assets, so I asked a live chat agent to clarify this. I was informed that 1:500 leverage is available when trading Forex and Metals, 1:100 for Cryptos, 1:200 for energies, 1:50 for Indices, and 1:20 for stocks.
The leverage ranges here are amicable and especially impressive for Forex, Metal and Cryptocurrency trading since leverage this high for such trading is relatively difficult to find among brokers in the industry nowadays.
What is their commission charge?
According to the FAQ page, commission charges are $3.50 per side, so $7 in total (round turn). I did however want to clarify this with customer support as a result of my initial confusion with the 4 account types having variations. When I spoke with a live chat agent, I was again confronted with the possibility that the live chat responses are at times, automated since the answer I received was very robotic and not directly correlated to my question. Instead of being told the commission charges for each tradable asset, I was provided with a link to the FAQ page on how to see the commission charge via MT4, which is not what I had asked.
The confusion arose from the fact that the ‘account’ section on the website states that, out of the 4 ‘ways’ to trade Forex, 2 are charged $7 per lot in commission, while the other two are charged $0.
In conclusion, it depends on the forex pair you are trading, in accordance to how much commission you will be charged. The fact I was notified of 3 different answers (2 on the website and one via live chat) was incredibly confusing and off-putting as the over-complication is not logical or fair to pose to potential new clients.
Do they offer a deposit bonus?
I could not find any information regarding deposit bonuses on the website, nor on the FAQ page, so I double checked with the live chat team who advised me that Osprey FX do not offer deposit bonus schemes. This is a huge positive to see in a broker as this eliminates a form of encouragement for client to deposit continuously for a false sense of having an upper hand in their trading experience.
However, at the end of the chat, I was disappointed to come across an apparently automated message which WAS a form of encouragement for clients to trade, and deposit sums of money for a competition, with a sum of money as a reward for the winner. I started to notice this was an automated message that rounded off every live chat conversation I had, and I did not feel entirely comfortable with the persistence on every live chat query I had; being bombarded with reminders about a trading competition, especially given the fact that to take part in the trading competition, one would need to use their trading conditions available, which had not been entirely clear to me at this point.
What do I need to open a verified account?
Information on what documentation you will be required to submit to open a verified account can be found on the FAQ page. A document proof of photo ID and proof of residency must be submitted, and there is even a handy video guide to assist you should you need help on how to verify your account.
How long does it take to open a live account?
According to the live chat agent I spoke with, the verification process can take approximately 10 minutes to complete. This is incredibly fast, and very efficient for a broker to adhere to.
I tried this out, and in my case it took about 20 minutes for me to receive notice that my account was set up, which meant I could begin trading on the same day, if I wished.
Do they have a minimum/ maximum deposit requirement?
I struggled to find this information on the FAQ page as there did not appear to be a specific page relevant, but I was advised by live chat that the minimum deposit requirement depends on the method of deposit chosen, ranging from $10 (majority of options) to $100 (wire transfers)
What deposit and withdrawal methods are available?
With Osprey, you have a variety of options to choose from: credit/debit Card, Wire transfer, Bitcoin, Instacoin, Vload and Upay card. I was relieved to know that aside from wire transfers which come with a $25 fee, the other options do not carry a fee to use. It is also a positive to see that Bitcoin and Instacoin are options too, since this has increased in popularity among traders for the speed and ease of completing transactions.
Are desktop/mobile/web trader versions all available?
Yes, Osprey FX have been forward thinking when it comes to the options of platforms to trade. All versions are available, including mobile which is beneficial to those who like the option to trade on the go, or at home, regardless of whether you are a Mac or Windows user.
Which countries are restricted from trading with Osprey FX?
Again, I struggled to find this information on the website itself so I asked a customer support agent and was advised that residents from the following countries are not allowed to trade with this broker: Burma, Congo, Cuba, Democratic Republic of Congo(Republic of Zaire), Iran, Iraq, Japan, Lebanon, Libya, Malta, North Korea, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Vietnam, Zimbabwe.
Do they sell additional products/services/managed accounts?
Nowhere on the website does it state that signals or EAs are sold separately to clients, however, since MT4 is available, then you would be able to incorporate third party software into your trading, if you so wish. I checked with a live chat agent in regards to managed accounts, and was informed that they do not offer such accounts.
If assistance is required, how can you get in touch?
I found it odd that they do not have a ‘contact us’ page, so on first look, it appears that only live chat is available as the only means of contact, but nowhere does it state the hours of operation. I had to once again, use live chat, to ask this question, and found out that Osprey FX customer support is available on a 24/7 basis, via live chat or email. No phone line is available which is a shame because in my past experiences, it is handy to know that you can pick up the phone in the case of a complicated trade query where intricate explanations are potentially needed, which are not always effectively put across via email or live chat.
What is the quality of customer service?
Although it is disappointing that a phone line is not available, the live chat overall was efficient and I received responses typically within a speedy 5-10 minutes. In my experience with the ticket/email service, I usually receive a response within 24 hours, which is also incredibly efficient.
One thing that did bother me though, is the suspicion of automated responses, as seen on some screenshots throughout this review, whereby my questions were not answered directly, and instead I was provided with a link not directly relevant to what I was looking for. This only made me think that the agents were not competent in English, and could not fully understand me at times, or, more likely there is a gap in their training program as at times it appeared that the agents did not know the answer as they would take an incredible amount of time to respond to me (approximately 20 minutes wait on live chat), or would avoid my direction of query entirely, meaning I would have to repeat myself or rephrase even the most basic of questions.
In conclusion, although there is 24-7 availability, the quality of customer support in the way of communication, was not above the satisfactory mark.
Do they offer an IB affiliate program?
Yes, you may become an affiliate of Osprey FX, by filling out a small form to then be accepted onto the program. Annoyingly, the commission structure is not set out on the website, so I asked a customer support agent about this. I was not able to get a response, even after 15 minutes of waiting for a response; it seems that the affiliate commissions structure will only be revealed only if you put yourself forward for it, and even then perhaps the structure varies according to one’s skill set.
What is my overall opinion of Osprey FX?
Overall, this broker carries some negatives and positive elements equally. However the positives that I have stated within this review are in my opinion what should be considered as the basic standard requirements that any trader should expect from their broker. Regarding the negatives, I say this because there are elements such as the complicated ‘account type’ issue which I struggled to gain an explanation from, in the beginning of my time with this broker. I also did not feel the website itself appeared very professional, and reminded me of the theme from the game, MInecraft, lacking a professional ambiance, and more that of a ‘gaming’ vibe instead, which I could not get on board with entirely.
In terms of trading conditions, I cannot dismiss the fact they are decent in terms of leverage, spreads and also deposit/withdrawal processing timescales; Instacoin and Bitcoin methods were both the stand out options in my experience; I found them to be the fastest and it was nice to not be charged for the transactions as well.
In regards to the quality client support, which I find to be an incredibly important aspect of a broker, I was not blown away. However one must appreciate the fact they are available 24/7 which is not entirely common amongst Forex brokers in the industry. I did not always get the answers to simple questions right away and found myself repeating basic questions, and getting frustrated waiting 15-20 minutes for a response. This only led me to believe that the staff did not know the answers, and rather than admitting this and seeking the answer out, they appeared to avoid the question, and the client would be ignored.
I would be reasonably comfortable recommending this broker, however, I’d only be comfortable recommending to those with a substantial amount of trading experience and expertise, in order to fully grasp the trading conditions this broker offers, and also have a thorough understanding of how commission works, so that one can be considerate when trading particular pairs. This is because one must take into account that with some forex pairs commission will be applied, and others not plus the minimum spread variation. This is confusing because it would mean that for those that like to trade a variety of instruments, they could easily forget which pairs do and do not get charged commission, and those pairs with the lower minimum spreads, and thus, would need to ensure their account is sufficiently topped up constantly even if it is not actually needed. This way, there is nearly always funds available, and therefore likely to be traded rather than just sat there, which of course, works well in the interest of the broker.