Best trading accounts for large high-net-worth (HNW) traders

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I quite often have discussions about how big the trading industry is in the UK for private clients, especially those that either make money themselves from trading, or that brokers make money from.

The truth about decent trading platforms and the brokerage industry is that less than 10% of their clients make them the majority of their commission, the other 90% just keep everyone ticking over.

That’s not true for bad trading platforms, you know the ones that want clients to lose money. They are all about churn and burn, taking the other side of client trades and spending hundreds of millions of pounds onboarding a new round of clients. They are happy to make a few hundred or even thousand dollars per account.

I’m talking about the proper brokers for proper traders, traders who could be classified as sophisticated investors.

If you are a big CFD or spread betting trader (and by that, I mean £50k upwards) you need a broker that is going to give you a bit more than just the top ten traded FX pairs and a few commodities.

For years the UK market has been saturated, and it commonly known that there are only really about 150,000 clients that are of significant value to a trading platform. Maybe even fewer that (who are not professional or institutional traders) make money consistently.

Our spread betting comparison tables compare all the spread betting accounts in the UK, and a quick glance will show that they are all pretty much the same. But, if you are an experienced trader with big pockets and want to trade in a tax-efficient way there are brokers out there that go the extra mile to ensure that the more sophisticated traders get an edge.

If you are a big spread betting customer and want a broker that gives you more we’ve summarised some of the best accounts for larger traders.

Best spread betting brokers for HNWs with large accounts

Our picks here are based on persona service, voice brokerage and market range.

  • IG – of course being the oldest and biggest spread betting firm a clear choice for HNW clients.  They have a huge balance sheet and are also listed on the LSE, so it should be very clear if the firm is having difficulties.
  • Spreadex is one of the most well-established spread betting brokers.  They launched in 1999 and probably offer the widest range of markets, phone trading and excellent personal service. You can read our interview with Spreadex CEO Jonathan Hufford

Best CFD brokers for high-net-worth individuals and large traders

These CFD broker picks are based on direct market access and order execution type

  • Interactive Brokers, has hands down some of the most comprehensive and complex order types available to retail traders in the UK. For large orders over the normal market size, you can drop feed orders into the market using their scale trader and also execute pairs trades with a single click.
  • Saxo Capital Markets is another decent CFD broker for HNWs as you can trade DMA, buy physical shares, and bonds, and trade all sorts of exotic derivative products. They also have decent brokers for phone trading if you want to work VWAP or other algo orders that may otherwise move the market if you did them yourself.

The importance of brokerage account diversification for larger traders

No matter what size your account balance you should be a responsible trader and diversify.  This doesn’t just apply to your portfolio, but also to your financial service providers.

History has shown us that spread betting brokers can go bust in the blink of an eye.  It is sensible to spread your business around a few of the top spread betting brokers so that if there are rumbles or rumours you can close and reopen your positions at another broker quickly.

The last thing you want to happen is to have all your positions with a defunct broker and the auditors taking weeks to close them out (cough cough MF Global). A sensible solution to mitigating this issue is to have a secondary account on standby so that if you foresee any future problems with your broker you stop using them sharpish…

As most accounts are opened online it can take as little as 20 minutes or as much as two days to get a new account ready.  Make sure you trade for the best, but are prepared for the worst and have secondary accounts that you are familiar with on standby in case you need to make a switch.

High net worth traders can also upgrade to a professional trading account where they can get better margin rates and more personal service. But, pro accounts do lose some of the protection the FCA that retail clients get like the no negative equity guarantee.

If you are considering upgrading, make sure you read our guide to the best professional trading accounts.

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