ATC Brokers Forex Broker Review
ATC Brokers is a highly obscure brokerage provider. Still, it’s not uncommon to stumble upon this name occasionally if you’re passionate about trading. There isn’t a whole lot known about them – what’s known is that they are originally from America, but operate off the Cayman Islands, at least in name.
Their products array includes foreign currencies, metal commodities, indices and metal contracts and also crypto. It’s a basic trading mix, in other words. What is interesting about ATC is that they use ECN trading model – that means they don’t usually participate in anything really, they just exist and give you access to the markets.
How well that works out for them, remains to be seen. Let’s check them out.
ATC is not very thrilling when it comes to different offers and features. As a rule, brokers offer you several account deals. They usually vary in trading volume, but also in tools, opportunities and access to complex instruments.
It’s not the case on ATC. There are slightly different ways of accessing the market, but in the end it’s all the same. Everyone pretty much pays the same and uses the same tools to trade the same products. There are still trading conditions, and some of them are rather peculiar. Here’s a short list.
1. ECN System
ECN is a popular system amongst some brokers, even though it’s somewhat contrary to their goals of being an intermediary between a trader and the markets they have (and provide) access to.
ECN implies that the broker doesn’t interfere with the trading process, and instead pushes opposite participants closer into a quicker exchange system. The broker’s role in this system is to simply provide access to these markets. A broker can’t be a market maker or act as storage for your securities.
It gives users a lot of advantages. First of all, because your pathway to the markets is much shorter, the connection is supposed to be better. It translates directly into faster execution. Whenever you close or open a position, it will be opened or closed in practice with little delay.
Although, the speed still depends on the broker. Their role in all of this is diminished, but it’s still very crucial. They are the ones providing and maintaining the connection. If the servers aren’t kept up properly or if the trading software that the broker supplies isn’t optimized, the connection will be compromised.
It’s hard to say what you’ll get in practice with ATC Brokers, but if their ECN nature is not a hoax – then everything is supposed to go smooth. If you suspect they aren’t truthful, then their most crucial advantage goes to waste.
The second advantage is pricing. They do take some standard fees for their work. Usually with ECN, they are higher to compensate for the tighter spreads ECN provides to the users. Commissions are artificially inflated, basically. There are token commissions on ATC, and you can pick slightly different commission plans, but it’s unimportant.
The spreads are what’s important.
2. ECN Pricing
There are several key product types, and the average spreads very much differ – all the more so, considering that the less liquid and safe asset is, the wider spreads get. There are tons of assets in each category, so let’s just stick to the major ones for now.
On most product types, the spreads are rather tight. The usual size is below 1.0 pips, but they beyond that barrier easily. On indices and other CFD deals, the spreads are obviously much larger, although they aren’t large enough to call them particularly big. Most are still pretty competitive.
The Global Dow index, for instance, is at 2.0 pips on average, while the Brent crude oil contracts sit at miniscule 0.03 pips in most situations. You can see that these spreads are pretty affordable – that is, if they are true numbers and not brought up in spite of the real situation.
3. Agency Model
To double down on the on the ECN structure, ATC consider themselves an Agency. It basically reassures the already established concepts: they don’t hold your securities in storage, they aren’t an active trading participant and they don’t work against the users.
Instead an Agency works in conjunction with the users, and in their best interests. Their objective is not to make profit out of speculative actions and investments, while providing brokerage as a sort of off-hand service. The key objective is to find the best deals and provide the best connection to the users. That’s it.
It sounds fantastic. This sort of affair is potentially lucrative both for a user and a broker. The problem is that many brokers use ECN system or their ‘Agency’ status as a façade to attract customers and then either conceal the real market data in hopes that the user will fail or interfere with the trading process, despite the promises.
Although ATC Brokers is a certified and a monitored provider, it often means nothing at all. ATC is an obscure company, and if you feel that they behave even slightly suspicious, it’s better to reconsider your options with them.
Very often, brokers such as ATC introduce their own trading solutions to the general public instead of supplying something familiar and established, such as MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader 5 of cTrader.
ATC is considered a minor brokerage provider in contrast to the larger names, which is the reason why they don’t have any worthwhile trading software – they just don’t bother. All they have are some APIs for people who want to forge their own investing experience, although those are hardly ATC creations.
Instead of discouraging some traders from using their services by supplanting the good old trading platforms with their dubious creations, ATC Brokers simply introduced several versions of MT4, much to everyone’s joy.
MT4’s key advantage is that it’s easily readable. Moreover, if you find yourself strugging over some part of it, you can always search for an answer online and receive tons of useful information. This trading platform was around for many years, and for most of this time, it was the key trading platform for stocks, Forex and CFDs.
It’s also highly modifiable and customizable – if you have a copy of MT4, you can download all sorts of modifications, indicators and tools to improve or rearrange your trading routine. Not to mention, ATC actually has a viable integration service that enables users to attach their chosen tools quickly and painlessly.
ATC themselves have fixed several interesting solutions onto their own version of MT4, called MT4 Pro. More about that further on, although if you want to trade the standard version, you are more than welcome to boot the unmodified MT4 – in desktop, Web or mobile variations.
The basic MT4 provides both useful insight into the markets and a large variety of indicators and order types.
In terms of market-data, there are various solutions, such as trading history, price history and more. Plus, you get to set up several charts at the same time to view value movements on various market assets.
In terms of execution, you can place standard orders, stop-loss orders, limit orders, and even more advanced kinds. It’s a usual, although a very deeply fleshed-out functionality. ATC’s own MT4 version called MT4 Pro improved upon these features.
MetaTrader 4 Pro
First thing you notice about ATC’s own version of MT4 is the design. Although the standard design is pretty user-friendly, even if not precisely slick, MT4 Pro’s interface looks more attractive and even slightly more intuitive. It is cleaner, uses less obtrusive black coloring and better charting design.
The base and the principle behind MT functionality remained the same, although ATC also improved upon several features – namely, the order execution tickets and the analytical instruments.
The tickets do not really exist in the usual sense inside MT4 base functionality. By its nature, an order ticket features comprehensive data regarding the market, positions you have, as well as some potential orders you might like. On base platform, you instead get to use these functions separately, unless you move them closer to one another.
MT4 Pro instead features all the mentioned components, as well as several advanced features. If you extend the ticket information, you can manage even bracket and trailing orders, among the usual stuff, of course. Interestingly, it’s also possible to cancel all the unfulfilled orders and the positions you already opened.
The analytical instruments are represented by the several charts that provide you with an in-depth analysis of your trading performance, including how many trades you won, when most your trades occurred, how profitable/detrimental you’ve been over time, and so forth. It’s all quite useful, really – gives you a clear idea of what’s going on.
There are also minor changes throughout the platform. It’s called Pro because it’s basically the same thing, but with more features, analytical tools and data attached to the initial product. It might be objectively better than the standard MT4, although the latter still has the benefit of familiarity.
There are several intriguing additional features available on ATC Brokers. It’s not really a useful research resource, and it’s not really intended to be by its nature. Agency brokers may have analytical data to bolster your understanding of the markets, but they, like said, don’t participate in the investing as much and might not have enough expertise.
They do, however, give you an opportunity to create a full-on financial operation with multiple other partners you may have introduced to ATC.
This feature is called ‘Introducing Broker’ and as one, you basically act as a sub-provider.
You’re tasked with helping your referrals understand the trading better and build effective portfolios, as well as monitor their operations, and so forth. In exchange for this patronage, you get a share of their profits – the exact percentage can be rearranged at any time.
This feature is suited for organizations, companies, smaller brokers and so forth. Individually, this approach is not really viable – all the more so, considering you have to actually subscribe for partnership with ATC for a chance to set up all of this.
ATC Brokers is a standard example of a Broker Agency. They direct you to lucrative deals with decent execution so that you could get to trading quickly and efficiently and enrich you and them both. At least, that’s how it’s supposed it’s supposed to work.
ATC are sneaky, they won’t disclose much of the information about their company or about their operation. A lot of the functionality is only accessible through portals or menus that aren’t available until you create an account. You can’t view pricing, most of the software or what tools they have inside this software.
In short, proceed with caution.