City Index is a brokerage that lets you trade CFDs or contracts for difference. Wait up, CF-what? Well, when you trade CFDs, you are entering into an agreement based on the price movement of a particular underlying asset without actually buying the asset.
So, when you buy a forex CFD, instead of buying the actual currency, you are agreeing to pay or receive the difference between the currency’s value when you enter the trade, and gain or lose its value when you finally exit the trade.
Still scratching your head? Here is an easy-to-understand explanation of CFDs and why you should (or should not) trade them.
What is City Index?
This CFD-exclusive brokerage lets you trade CFDs online and provides access to more than 4,500 global shares, 17 global indices, 84 FX pairs and 26 global commodities.
Originally from the UK, the company also operates in Singapore with its own local office, so you’ve got a local line to call. Its parent company, StoneX Group, is listed on the NASDAQ, so you’ve got nothing to worry about.
City Index overview: fees, products, trading platforms
|Trading products||CFDs on indices, shares, Forex, commodities and metals|
|Minimum commission fee||Minimum S$10 for SG stocksMinimum US$15 for US stocks
Minimum 0.5 spread on EUR/USD and AUD/USD
|Minimum funding amount||$150 (if using credit/debit card, $250)|
|Trading platforms||Web Trader (browser and mobile), AT Pro (desktop)|
|Payment method||ibanking, PayNow, cheque, bill payment, wire transfer, credit/debit card|
|Inactivity fee||Yes – $15 per month after 24 months of inactivity|
All you really need is City Index’s Web Trader that is a powerful HMTL5 platform with all the charts and tools at your disposal, and fully customisable. For the more professional, there’s also the Advanced Trading Pro, which is City Index’s downloadable platform for desktop, but it’s not as user-friendly.
City Index also offers access to third-party platform MetaTrader4 (MT4), a dedicated FX platform for the savvier traders.
City Index commission and trading fees
All of City Index’s CFDs except shares will be subject to a spread, which is a margin tacked on by the brokerage each time you execute a trade.
In the case of shares, you will pay a commission rather than a spread. Here are some examples of commissions being charged by City Index.
|Share||CFD commission / minimum||Minimum|
|Singapore shares||0.08%||10 SGD|
|US shares||1.5 cents per share||15 USD|
|UK shares||0.10%||15 GBP|
|European shares||0.10%||25 EUR|
|Australian shares||0.08%||5 AUD|
Charges for other CFD assets are by spreads. Spreads can vary depending on many factors including the asset being traded, the time and market conditions.
Here are sample City Index spreads for indices, which are pretty competitive:
|Market||Minimum spread (fixed)||Margin from|
|Singapore Index||0.4 points||5%|
|Germany 30||1 point||5%|
|Wall Street||1.6 points||5%|
|US SP 500||0.4 points||5%|
|Hong Kong 50||10 points||5%|
Forex charges are kept low too. Here are some sample spreads for forex:
|FX pair||Minimum spread||Typical spread||Margin from|
If you’re into commodities, here are City Index’s spreads for them:
|Market name||Spread||Spread pricing||Margin from|
|US Crude Oil||0.4 points||Around market spread||20%|
|UK Crude Oil||5 points||Fixed||20%|
|Sugar No 11||0.06 points||Fixed||20%|
|Natural Gas||18 points||Around market spread||20%|
As with all Singapore brokerages, you’ll also have to pay City Index’s overnight charge whenever you hold an open position overnight or over the weekend.
How to invest with City Index?
After logging into the platform, you will be able to research assets as well as place trades.
City Index’s basic desktop platform is called Web Trader, and offers all the usual tools of analysis like charts and indicators. There’s also a mobile version compatible with iOS and Android smartphones and tablets that lets you place trades on the go and access live prices and charts.
For a very basic trade, you can use the market search field to search for the markets and assets you are interested in. Add to the watchlist those that you wish to monitor.
When you add an asset to your watchlist, you’ll be able to see charts and other info by clicking on the triangle beside the description of the asset.
When you want to execute a trade, click on the buy price of an asset in your watchlist. You can then enter information such as price and quantity, as well as stops and limits. Don’t forget to click on all the tabs at the top of the window for other ways to customise your trade.
How to apply for a City Index account?
Simply select your desired account and then fill up the relevant online form.
You can choose between the following:
- CFD account:This is the account that most laymen should be using.
- MetaTrader 4: For advanced traders.
- Direct Market Access: For experienced high-volume forex traders with trade sizes of over $100,000.
Singaporeans or Permanent Residents can have their personal particulars filled in automatically by logging into MyInfo with your SingPass.
Once your identity has been verified and the account approved, you can then proceed to transfer funds and start CFD trading right away. When your account has been verified, transfer funds using internet banking, PayNow, credit or debit card, cheque, bill payment or wire transfer. You can also pay by NETS at their office.
The City Index minimum deposit is S$150 or S$250 if you are paying by credit or debit card, although it’s recommended that you deposit at least $2,000 if you want to trade forex or indices, or $2,500 for other markets.
Guide to how to use City Index
Log in to the Web Trader platform to start researching your trades. There are finder and charting tools that you can make use of.
If you know what you’re looking for, you can search for markets by typing it in the search bar on the top left or click “Browse markets” to see available markets organised by asset class. Add anything you’re interested in to your workspace or watchlist.
Click on the price of the market in the BUY column to open a trade ticket. Enter your desired quantity and your margin will be calculated automatically and displayed at the bottom.
Once your trade is live, you can see a summary of your trade details and can edit your Stops and Limits. All your open positions will be placed at the bottom of the screen, under the Positions tab. Hope for the best and don’t forget to close your positions if necessary. Good luck!
Who should use City Index?
City Index offers a fairly wide range of marketing offerings with affordable spreads.
The Web Trader platform is not as sleek or intuitive as that of some other brokers, but for beginners it is not that hard to learn to use and gets the job done. You can also use guaranteed stop-loss orders to limit how much you can lose.
City Index’s spreads and commissions for forex and indices are also quite competitive. That, coupled with a low minimum deposit amount of S$150 (S$250 if using credit or debit card), makes it a good choice for beginning traders.
That said, CFD trading is a risky business as there is potential for greater losses than what you put in so you have to be sure of what you’re getting into.
For experienced traders, AT Pro isn’t the most aesthetically pleasing of platforms but it does have powerful analysis tools and is fast.
Overall, City Index is a good choice for traders of any level who are looking for affordable spreads and a decent platform.
Alternative investment brokerages to City Index
Although its costs are competitive, City Index doesn’t offer the biggest variety of portfolios, so you may wish to consider some other online brokerages such as:
IG Markets – Intuitive, easy-to-use platform that specialises in CFDs and caters to beginner and professional traders, but its spreads aren’t the cheapest. Read our review of IG Markets and what it offers.
Saxo Markets – Simple platform for stocks, ETFs, bonds and mutual funds, and a more comprehensive platform for FX, CFDs and more. Read about how to use the popular SaxoTraderGO platform.
There are lots of other brokerages online, so don’t give up your search for the best trading platform in Singapore if that’s your thing.
Have you tried trading with City Index? Share your reviews in the comments!