The Israel Securities Authority Grants First Forex Licenses to FXCM and Four Additional Brokers

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The Israel Securities Authority (ISA) granted five Forex brokers a foreign currency dealers' license today. According to the press release, Atrade Ltd, FXCM Trading Ltd, R.F.X Global Trading Ltd, First Index Ltd, Plus500 IL Ltd, have been green-lighted by the ISA to start operating in the country at the end of October, 2016.

As LeapRate reports, several others brokers had applied to the ISA for permission, however, ISA’s stringent FX regulations and restrictions have dissuaded many foreign currency dealers from establishing a presence in Israel. In May of 2015, 21 Forex dealers applied for a license with the ISA.

While many other Forex-friendly jurisdictions do not cap leverage ratios and perks like newcomer bonuses, the ISA has capped leverage at 100:1. The Israeli regulator has also forbidden bonuses or any other financial rewards to clients.

The Israeli financial watchdog requires comprehensive risk and conflict of interest disclosures, as the dealers are essentially counterparties to all trades executed on their trading platforms.

It is unclear at press time if the ISA will allow and binary options and CFD instruments by the five regulated brokers. Earlier this year, Israeli financial news outlet GLOBES reported on a leaked ISA document, which revealed that the agency considers binary options a form of gambling, and not a legitimate financial instrument.

A sentiment that has been echoed by other financial regulatory bodies like the AFM in the Netherlands, and Dutch minister of finance Jeroen Dijsselbloem.