Highlights - Best Brokers on the Most Popular Asset Classes

You probably went to Google searching for the best brokers available in South Africa. Although you know what you want in terms of online investments, Google isn't inside your mind (at least yet). So, it couldn't figure out whether you wish to trade Forex, US stocks, or buy investment fund units. So, Google brought you here. This article is long, but it has the basics of what you need to know about the best investment and trading platforms available for clients based in SA. In the case you would like to jump straight to the asset class you are looking for, this article contains our opinion on the best brokers when trading: FX, Commodities, Stocks, ETFs, Crypto and Funds.

Many websites that write on trading financial instruments topics will recommend "The Best Online Broker", and it will be the platform that pays them the best commissions. They will do it in a way that looks professional. On the contrary, we remark that there is no "Best Broker" that covers all the needs of a trader because, should there be a "perfect trading platform", it would have to have:

  • 0 commissions,

  • 0 spreads,

  • good execution of orders,

  • good graphical interface,

  • availability of accounts in ZAR,

  • full access to every financial market.

Unfortunately, no platform offers all of these features at the same time. However, many of them have aspects that make them stand out from the rest in specific aspects/markets. In this article, we try to offer a list of a maximum of 3 Brokers per asset class (Forex, stocks, crypto, etc.) and why it can be recommendable over the others available, specifically for local traders. Why do we present just three options? We believe that when trading instruments of each asset class, there are not 100 brokers available that are infallible; some stand out above the others. Also, some platforms will be repeated among the different asset classes, since they are the top option on several.

ASINKO charges a commission from specific online platforms for referring clients, but it does not charge a commission from all the ones we present here (or might present in the future). Notwithstanding this, if we consider that a platform has to be in the Top 3, we will do so, no matter we promote them or not. Please note that the lists presented here are part of our professional opinion: there is a possibility that this does not fit 100% of all traders' needs.

Best Forex Brokers in South Africa

In SA and in the rest of the world, much of the Forex market trades are executed through CFDs. These are financial derivatives developed to facilitate currency exchange between traders. Forex is the most liquid market on the planet and offers the most opportunities for traders.


Plus500 offers 60+ Forex Pairs with leverage. You may start trading with as little as €100. Plus500's proprietary platform, WebTrader, provides fast execution and advanced trading tools to protect your profits and limit losses.


AvaTrade is one of the oldest online brokerages, and its one of the Brokers with the most substantial level of regulation, so it's fair to say that it's one of the safest Brokers where you can trade Forex. AvaTrade's FX offering is one of the most extensive ones with +50 currency pairs, with low spreads and excellent trading execution.


With over 3,500,000 clients since founded in 2009, XM has grown to a large and well established international investment firm. With low fees and a low depositing amount, XM is one of the global leaders in the FX market.

AvaTrade's Platform is optimized for a smooth user experience

Best International Stock Brokers in South Africa

Investing in international stocks is an excellent way to diversify a portfolio positively. It is possible to trade in large US, European, and UK companies' through the global financial markets' access provided by international Stock Brokers. Here's our list of the top Stock and CFD Brokers available in SA.


AvaTrade is regulated in SA, and offers a vast number of international stocks. You may trade simply and straightforward with this platform.

City Index

Shares trading as Spread Betting and CFD Trading on over 4500+ global shares with spreads from 0.1% each side.  City Index’s parent company is StoneX Group Inc  trades in the NASDAQ Exchange with (Symbol:SNEX), and is one of the largest retail and institutional trading providers in the world.


XTB offers CFDs on Stocks on more than 1800 equities with a low commission of 0.08%. Their offering is from the US, UK and European markets.

Best Cryptocurrency Platforms in South Africa

Cryptocurrencies have become a very popular financial asset among traders due to their inherent volatility. There are two basic ways to trade cryptocurrencies: directly and through CFDs. CFD Brokers are 'safer' because Crypto platforms can be hacked (How many stories of this type do we know?). At the same time, CFD Brokers offer contracts between the trader and the Broker, with which there is no possibility of losing the position due to an external hack. We mention both types of platforms here. 


StormGain is a real Crypto platform (Not CFD), meaning that you are buying Bitcoin when buying Bitcoin with them. StormGain allows you to start trading the most popular and most capitalised coins with leverage of up to 200x, or you can buy and "hodl" crypto.


We have chosen Libertex as the 3rd Crypto trading platform  due to its vast coin offering, Crypto pairs, low fees, and overall robust trading environment. Due to the popularity of these instruments, the trading fee is reduced by 50%. Libertex is a CFD platform, so if you open an account with them, you are betting on the Cryptocurrency's price; you are not acquiring the coin itself.

AvaTrade offers international Shares with 0% Commission

Best International ETF & Investment Fund Brokers in South Africa

ETFs and Investment Funds are the medium and long-term financial investment instruments most traded by the retail public worldwide, and SA is no exception. Exchange-Traded Funds are a type of investment fund that tracks a collection of assets like indices, bonds, or commodities, replicating those assets' collective performance into a single ETF. These instruments provide the opportunity to diversify risk in a portfolio that can include 1,000 financial assets (sometimes even more). We focus here on the Brokers providing ETFs since we believe it's the cheaper and more effective way of acquiring a diversified asset.


XTB offers more than 100 CFDs on ETFs. The Asset Managers are among the largest ones globally: iShares, Vanguard, Global X, Invesco, SPDR, among others.


BDSwiss offers over 80 ETFs CFDs from the world's leading exchanges to trade with direct market access exclusively at their InvestPLUS platform. All ETFs are set to BUY only and can be traded with up to 1:5 leverage.

Best Commodity Brokers in South Africa

Are you interested in gaining exposure to Oil, Gold, Wheat and other raw materials? Being South Africa a net commodity exporter, trading these instruments is quite popular. In this list, we present some options to trade them through futures and CFDs. All of them offer trading of instruments with exposure to Gold and Oil, so if you are interested in other raw materials, you need to check which ones provide it. Our primary focus has been the cheap commissions and low spreads, not on the offering variety.


XM offers a good number of CFDs on Commodities. We place it in the No. 1 position because the spreads provided by XM are very low, in addition to the fact that you can start trading financial instruments of all kinds with a USD 5 deposit only.

Saxo Bank

Through Saxo Bank platforms, it is possible to trade raw materials through various financial instruments at a more than affordable cost: Spot Metals, Futures, Options, CFDs and ETCs on Commodities.


Again, Plus500. Commodities CFDs are available for trading at Plus500 with up to 1:150 leverage. You can start trading with as little as USD$200 to gain the effect of USD$300,000 capital.

Ava's App allows you to trade all asset classes in simple and easy to use interface.
Ava's App allows you to trade all asset classes in simple and easy to use interface.