Compare the best spread betting platforms in 2022

Our panel of financial experts have compared the best spread betting brokers to find the best platform for your needs. Find our panel’s favourite brokers below and compare what made them rank so highly.
By:
Updated: Sep 26, 2022

The panel conducted a series of tests on every investment platform that offers spread betting to see how it stood up to the competition. Those tests included things like signing up and placing a bet, and comparing the welcome bonuses on offer.

After testing each platform, our panel produced a final ranking of their favourites. Their ratings played into our final table which you can find below.

Best spread betting platforms 2022

  • City Index – best overall and best stock market spread betting broker
  • Pepperstone – best forex spread betting platform
  • ATFX – best for betting on commodity markets
  • Saxo Markets – best spread betting broker for low spreads

Compare the best spread betting brokers

This ranking shows our experts’ favourite spread betting platforms. Sign up by following any of the links in the table, or keep reading to learn more about the different platforms and the service they offer.

1
Min. Deposit
$ 50
Promotion
User Score
10
Award-winning platform - trade in real stocks
Commission Free on stocks
11 payment methods, including PayPal
Start Trading
Payment Methods:
Bank Transfer, Wire Transfer
Full Regulations:
CySEC, FCA
eToro is a multi-asset platform which offers CFD and non CFD products. 68% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.
2
Min. Deposit
$ 100
Promotion
User Score
10
Trade out-of-hours on over 70+ US stocks
Get exposure to a wide range of popular UK, US and international stocks
Enjoy flexible access to more than 17,000 global markets, with reliable execution
Start Trading
Payment Methods:
Bank Transfer, Credit Card, Debit Card, PayPal
Full Regulations:
ASIC, FCA, FINMA, is a licensed bank (IG Bank in Switzerland)

Top spread betting brokers

1. City Index: best overall and best stock market spread betting broker

City Index is a leading spread betting platform that offers a huge range of assets to bet on. There are 4,700 assets in total, with more being added all the time. It ranks as our favourite platform because of the amount of options available and because .

2. Pepperstone: best for beginners and best for spread betting forex

Pepperstone is a great spread betting and CFD trading platform that offers a welcoming place for beginners who have never bet on financial markets before. To spread bettors in the UK and Ireland it offers a tax-free way to bet on all the leading forex markets, from majors like USD/EUR to exotics like GBP/HUF.

3. ATFX: best for spread betting commodities

ATFX is our experts’ top pick to bet on commodities. Few platforms offer anything like the range of commodities that’s on offer from ATFX, where you can trade precious metals like gold and popular hard commodities like crude oil quite simply and easily.

4. Saxo Markets: Best spread betting platform with low spreads

Saxo is a well-established spread betting platforms that offers some of the most competitive spreads in finance. You can bet a huge range of assets, including popular stocks and indices like Tesla and the S&P500. All of them are available with tight spreads, which made Saxo our expert pick for the most cost-effective way to bet.

Best spread betting brokers for your needs

What is the best stock market spread betting broker?

City Index is the best broker for stock market betting. With nearly 5,000 markets available and the ability to spread bet the newest IPO stocks, it’s by far the best place to bet on stock markets around the world.

Where can I spread bet forex?

Pepperstone is our panel’s top pick for forex. It offers a large range of major, minor, and exotic currency pairs with tight spreads so you can get the best value for money. 

Read more: the best forex spread betting brokers

What is the best commodity spread betting platform?

AFTX provides the best service for commodity betting. It can be difficult to find brokers that offer commodities, but AFTX allows betting on both hard and soft commodities so you have a variety of options to choose from.

Read more: the best commodity spread betting brokers

What is the best crypto spread betting broker?

It’s difficult to find a broker that offers spread betting on crypto, because laws in the UK and Ireland mean that it’s only available to professional clients. The best option is to trade with a broker like eToro instead, which is a similar process to spread betting.

Read more: the best cryptocurrency spread betting brokers

How to choose a spread betting broker

These features were unanimously chosen by our experts as features a beginner should look for in order to get the best and safest experience.

Spread betting is only legal in parts of Europe, most notably the UK and Ireland. It is not permitted in most of the rest of the world, so you can’t spread bet as a United States resident, for example.

This is obviously a hugely important consideration when choosing a broker. If spread betting is illegal where you live, then you need to find another way to trade. A good option is to trade CFDs instead. There are a lot of similarities between spread betting and CFDs, so it’s a good alternative.

2. Look for a broker with low spreads

If you are able to spread bet where you live, then low spreads are the next most important thing to look for. The spread refers to the difference between the ‘bid’ and ‘ask’ price for an asset. If a broker offers a bid (buy) price of $51 and an ask (sell) price of $50, then the difference – $1 – is the spread.

Spreads are effectively the trading fees for spread betting. The difference between the two prices is the broker’s fee. A broker where the spread is $1 is better value than one where the spread is $5. But be aware that you might not have much choice in the matter if there are only a handful of brokers that let you spread bet certain assets, like cryptocurrency or commodities.

3. Find the assets you want to bet on

As there are strict limits on where spread betting is allowed, you need to spend more time researching which brokers offer betting on which assets. As a general rule, it’s easier to find platforms that offer spread betting on the stock market and forex compared to commodities.

Cryptocurrency is a different matter altogether, where the limits on spread betting are extremely strict, even in the United Kingdom. You may have to prove you are a professional client to be able to bet.

4. Learn how a point is measured

Spread betting price changes are measured in points and a point may mean different things depending on which asset you are betting on. For instance, in forex betting a price change is usually measured in pips – 0.0001 of movement. While in the stock market and gold betting a point normally refers to a price change of $0.1.

When you place a bet, payouts are based on the number of points of movement in the price. If you place a $5 bet on the price of gold, and the price increases by $0.5, you would earn $25. A $5 bet multiplied by 5 points of movement (0.1 x 0.5). It’s crucial to understand this so you know what needs to happen to be successful.

5. Use a demo account to practice

The best way to get to grips with spread betting is by signing up to a broker and using a demo account to try it out before you start betting real money. Most brokers offer demo accounts, where you are assigned a set amount of virtual money to bet with.

Demo accounts not only teach you the basics about how a market works, but they also give you the chance to test out certain strategies. You could try betting on a few different assets to see which one suits you best, for example, before risking any of your own money.

Quick answers to key questions

Can you make money from spread betting?

Yes, although it isn’t easy and there is a high risk of losing money if you’re inexperienced.. You need to be disciplined in terms of how you manage the size of your bets and when to cut your losses on a losing bet. Use stop-loss limits – automatic orders to close positions at a loss – to reduce the risk from volatile markets catching you out.

The volatility and danger of losing money is why our experts recommend starting with a demo account. You will get a better appreciation for the risks and rewards on offer, and how individual markets move, by testing it out rather than going in blind.

Is spread betting tax-free?

Yes, it’s the biggest reason to choose spread betting over CFDs in the first place. In the UK, spread betting is exempt from a Capital Gains Tax, which means any profits you make are tax-free.

The reason for this is that spread betting is classed as a form of gambling (the clue is in the name). Gambling is tax-free, whereas profits from investments like buying stocks or real estate investment are liable to taxes. Spread betting is banned in the US for the same reason: it’s considered gambling, and betting laws are far more strict in the United States.

Should I spread bet or trade CFDs?

Your location might make your decision for you: if you live outside the UK and Ireland, you won’t be able to spread bet and so you should trade CFDs instead. If you live in the United Kingdom, then there are some other factors to consider.

The most important thing is what you want to bet on. If the answer is crypto, then you need to use a broker like eToro and trade it. Otherwise, you have options, and spread betting may well be the best choice given its tax-free status. Particularly if you plan on betting a lot.

Can I use leverage in spread betting?

Yes, the ability to use leverage is one of the things that makes it more popular than simply buying and holding assets, like shares or cryptocurrency. You can normally access leverage up to 1:30 in the UK, which is the maximum allowed under EU law.

How long are spread bets open for?

It varies but they can be open more or less indefinitely. Generally you can make spread bets that last until the end of the quarter, or you can make daily spread bets that keep rolling over indefinitely but are liable to overnight fees for each day you keep them open past 10pm.

Overnight fees are an important consideration because they can make spread betting much more expensive. They are charged because you use leverage and are thus borrowing the money to keep the bet open. The overnight fees are effectively an interest payment, but like all short-term loans they can be expensive: a few pounds a night even for a small bet.

Where can I learn more about spread betting?

A good place to start is to read more about the specific asset you want to bet on, whether that’s stocks, forex, commodities, or cryptocurrencies. Then sign up to a broker with a demo account to learn the ropes before you put any of your money at risk.

Methodology

We asked our in-house financial experts to rate and review every leading spread betting platform. Each expert performed their own tests and ranked the platforms according to the ones they believed came out on top.

Our panel is made up of financial and trading professionals with many years of experience between them. They have spread bet all financial markets and are well-placed to provide expert advice to beginners and more experienced traders alike. 

We combined all their final ratings to put together a definitive list of the best spread betting platforms. While none of those platforms influenced the results in any way, we may be paid a commission if you sign up to their service by following one of the links on this page.

FAQs

Who created spread betting?
Are spread betting and day trading the same thing?
Can I spread bet if I’m not in the UK?
What’s the biggest advantage of trading with leverage in a spread bet?
What’s a good way to manage risk when spread betting?
What is spread-betting arbitrage, and is it a strategy worth pursuing?

Sources & references
Risk disclaimer

Invezz is a place where people can find reliable, unbiased information about finance, trading, and investing – but we do not offer financial advice and users should always carry out their own research. The assets covered on this website, including stocks, cryptocurrencies, and commodities can be highly volatile and new investors often lose money. Success in the financial markets is not guaranteed, and users should never invest more than they can afford to lose. You should consider your own personal circumstances and take the time to explore all your options before making any investment. Read our risk disclaimer >

James Knight
Editor of Education
James is a lead content editor for Invezz. He's an avid trader and golfer, who spends an inordinate amount of time watching Leicester City and the… read more.