Expert Option Review: Complete Beginners Guide
Expert Option is a binary market broker that specializes in providing services such as binary options trading. It is a trustworthy and low-risk broker that offers digital trading on forex, cryptocurrencies, commodities, indices, and stocks, and is ideal for beginners and novice investors.
In this Expert Option Review, we will take a look at a broker that offers clients the chance to invest in instruments such as digital options.
The broker offers traders the chance to trade over 100 different assets including a range of different cryptocurrencies. They have been around since 2014 and have a wide range of opinions online.
The key question is whether Expert Option is safe and can it be trusted?
In this comprehensive review of Expert Option we will go over everything that you need to know about the broker. We will dig into their history, regulations, customer service and fees.
Expert Option was started in 2014 and is owned and operated by Expert Option Ltd.
The company is based in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. There office location is 1510, Kingston, Suite 305, Griffith corporate centre. If you wanted to find more information Expert Option then you can look up their company number with registration number 22863.
Expert option also has a company that will process the payments for the brand and that is Vestede Limited (company no 116061). They are based in Gibraltar.
The company offers Digital Options instruments on numerous different assets. Digital Options are essentially options that will have a binary outcome on expiry.
What really stands out for expert option is that they have developed their own trading engine and platform. This is contrary to the usual practice where brokers would outsource their platforms to an external technology provider.
Is Expert Option Safe?
This is perhaps one of the most relevant questions when it comes to choosing a broker and completing a review. There have been too many examples of brokers in this industry that have operated in a less than stellar manner.
There were some concerns online about Expert Option given that the company was registered in St Vincent. We asked Expert Option about the reasons for this and they stated that it was for tax efficiency reasons. Whether this is the only reason for it, we cannot tell. However, there are many exchanges and brokers that have made similar choices.
For example, some of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges operate in offshore locations. The Binance crypto exchange is registered in Malta whereas exchanges like BitFinex, which is one of the biggest, is registered in Luxembourg.
One of the most important factors that you need to consider when you are about to trade with a broker is their regulations. What jurisdictions are they registered in and what client protections are there?
In the case of Expert Option, they are certified by the Financial Market Relations Regulation Center. This is a non-governmental voluntary oversight body that is located in Russia. You can view their licence certificate over here.
They are also regulated by the Vanuatu Financial Service Commission. This is a relatively new regulator that has started offering financial service licences to offshore companies. You can read more about their client protections on this website.
We could not find the Vanuatu licence number on their website or independently verify their registration there.
Another really important factor when you are considering a broker is whether the information that you send them is secure. Encrypted communication is now the standard among brokers and financial websites.
Why is this important?
Well, given the prevalence of sophisticated hackers these days sending information such as credit card details and personal documents is really risky. That is why you have to make sure that the broker uses the latest standards in SSL encryption.
Expert Option is SSL encrypted and you can see this by observing the green padlock in the browser window. This means that all of the information that you send to Expert Option's servers is encrypted using AES 256 encryption.
It is very important that when you are visiting Expert Option's website that you see this green padlock on the site to make sure that you are not falling victim to a phishing attack.
Expert Option Assets
As mentioned, Expert Option has a range of different assets that you can trade options on. These range from the more traditional asset classes such as Forex, Equities and Commodities, to the new and exciting cryptocurrency field.
With Fiat currency trading pairs, you have all of the major crosses including AUD, USD, GBP, NZD, CAD, EUR and CHF. With equity instruments you have some of the most interesting companies such as Amazon, Baidu, Coca-Cola and Tesla. There are three commodities that you can trade and they are Gold, Silver and Oil.
On the digital currency side it seems as if Expert Option has gone all in. In fact, they have more cryptocurrency pairs than they have of all other assets. Below are all the crypto pairs that they provide on their platform.
- Bitcoin (BTC)
- Ethereum (ETH)
- Ripple (XRP)
- Tether (USDT)
- Bitcoin Cash (BCH)
- Monero (XMR)
- ZCash (ZEC)
- Bitcoin Gold (BTG)
- Ethereum Classic (ETC)
- IOTA (MIOTA)
- Litecoin (LTC)
- Dash (DASH)
As mentioned, Expert Option is a Digital Option platform. This means that the tradable instruments are derivatives that get their value from the underlying asset price.
Digital Options work in a similar way to traditional options in that they have an asymmetric pay-out. This means that unlike CFDs and Futures, your gain / loss is capped by a predetermined amount.
Options, unlike futures, give the holder the right but not the obligation to buy or sell an asset at some predetermined price in the future. If you enter a CALL option you are going long the underlying asset and if you enter a PUT option you are shorting the underlying price.
With a Digital option, your pay-out is either set to some percentage of your invested capital or it is set to 0. In terms of the pay-out rates at Expert Option, they vary. They range from 70% to 90%.
There are also two expiry times at expert option. They are 1 minute and 2 minute expiries. We would have liked to have seen a slightly longer option expiries such as 1 hour or daily options.
However, if you are a day trader who likes to embark on scalping tactics then shorter expiry times could be to your liking.
Jurisdictions & Languages
Expert Option is restricted in certain jurisdictions and are not open to investors from the following countries: USA, Canada, European Economic Area, Switzerland, Israel, New Zealand, Australia, Japan, North Korea, Puerto Rico, Sudan.
This is probably related to the individual regulations in those states that do not allow offshore brokers such as Expert Option Ltd to solicit clients.
For those regions that Expert Option operates, they have translated their website and platform into a number of different languages. These are given in the image on the right.
In terms of telephone support, this is only available in English, Thai and Hindi.
Expert Option Demo Account
At expert option, you can trade on a demo account with $10,000 of demo money. An Expert Option demo account is a great way for the trader to get a better sense of how the platform works and whether they could indeed see themselves using it. It is also something that not many cryptocurrency exchanges will offer their traders.
What we really liked about the Expert Option demo account is that there are no obligations on the side of the trader. You do not even have to sign up and you can practice trading in demo anonymously on Expert Option to your heart's content.
This is a stark departure from older Digital option brands that have used the demo account as a way to drag the clients in by manipulating them to hand over more funds. The Expert Option demo account also has all of the same pricing that you will find on the live account below.
Something that we have not seen that often in the CFD broker and Cryptocurrency exchange space is the range of different account types that are offered by Expert Option.
Sure, at some cryptocurrency exchanges you will have tiered account levels but these are merely determined by how much you are willing to verify yourself on the exchange. At expert option, the tiered accounts are determined by how much you invest.
Here are the benefits that are supposed to come with the account options that they provide.
|Personal Manager||Introduction||Introduction||Account Manager||Senior Account Manager|
|Market Reviews & Research||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Access to Strategies||Yes|
|Max No Deals Open||10||15||30||No Limit||No Limit|
|Max Deal Amount||$25||$250||$1,000||$2,000||$5,000|
|Increased Profit||0||0||up to 2%||up to 4%||up to 6%|
What does this mean for you?
Well clearly as is shown those accounts that have more money in them will have more benefits. However, we would suggest starting small. This is because you need to make sure that you need to make sure you are completely comfortable with the broker before you will commit such a large tranche of funds.
Moreover, you may want to consider against the bonus options that may be presented to you. This is because bonus terms are known to be incredibly onerous and have turnover requirements that are almost impossible to reach.
Hence, even though the prospect of "free money" sounds great, you have to realise that it is far from free and comes with terms and conditions that can restrict withdrawal.
Funding / Withdrawal
There are a few ways in which you can fund your expert option account. No doubt the easiest way that clients will opt for is to use a credit or debit card. In terms of the card types that they accept, it is Visa, MasterCard and UnionPay.
The minimum deposit at Expert Option is the $50 that they have on their first level account. They also have a maximum deposit size of $3,000. This is probably to do with the payment processor limits imposed on them.
There are also various electronic money funding options should you prefer that. They accept payments via Neteller, Skrill, WebMoney, Qiwi Wallet, Yandex Money and Payweb.
If you want to withdraw money from your account, then the minimum withdrawal amount is $10. This is probably because of the fees involved in the withdrawal.
If you are withdrawing funds then Expert Option can only withdraw it into the same account that you funded with. This is in order to avoid concerns of money laundering.
Customer Support & KYC
This is obviously a really important consideration for brokers and exchanges. There is nothing that is more frustrating than having to wait for days to get customer support.
Expert option claims that they have 24/7 customer support. You can reach these support agents directly from the trading platform. When we tried to reach out to the support team it took about 10 minutes to receive a response which is not too bad. You can also reach them on their dedicated support email at [email protected]
There are also numbers that you can call for their local offices. This is helpful for those traders that would like to speak to someone. Here are the local numbers
- UK (English): Number: +44 20 3868 3160, email: [email protected], available 24/7
- India (Hindi): Number: 000 800 443 0002, email: [email protected], available 10:30 - 19:30 (India time)
- Thailand (Thai): Number: +66 6000 35 407, email: [email protected], available 10:30 - 19:30 (Thailand time)
In terms of KYC, Expert Option is required to complete a number of steps to make sure that you are who you say you are. This is the standard protocol in today's markets to avoid the risks of Money Laundering and fraud.
When you fund your account at Expert Option they will usually ask for a proof of identity as well as a proof of address. They should take a day or two to verify these documents.
Expert Option Platform
One of the most interesting parts of the Expert Option package has to be their trading platform. As mentioned, this platform was built in house and is hence unique among the other option and CFD platforms.
The web-based platform seems to be well designed with numerous tools at the trader’s disposal. Everything that is related to your account administration is on the left of your screen. Here you can fund your account, monitor your past trades or make use of their extensive educational material.
In the middle you will have all your charts and markets. You can choose a layout that works best for you and you can split the chart among more than one asset. This is beneficial for those traders who like to trade more than one market at a time. As you can see below, we are monitoring both Gold and EUR/USD.
If you are one of those traders that likes to run technical analysis then you can use the charting tools and indicators that Expert Option has. While these can be useful, they are fairly rudimentary for a charting package.
For example, you have some drawing and mapping capability where you can sketch out your trendlines and entry points. You can also switch from the standard area chart for a more specific line, bar or candle chart.
Taking a look at the indicators, they give you a list of 8 different indicators that you can use. You have your basic Moving Averages, Bollinger Bands, RSIs, MACDs etc. The customization options around these indicators is relatively simple with only one or two different inputs.
If you wanted to get a bit more of a perspective on the market trends then you can open up that tab to the right of the chart. This gives you an idea of which assets are trending the most and in which direction they are heading. You can also adjust the time frame if you wanted to use this as part of your analysis of the option expiry.
The order functionality at Expert Option is rather basic. It appears to be a simple buy / sell order with the only parameters that you can adjust being the amount invested on the trade as well as the strike rate.
Pro Tip: When you adjust the strike rate, you are also adjusting the odds and payouts. If you have a particularly strong view on the direction then you can adjust the payout based on that.
Social trading is an interesting piece of functionality that Expert Option have included on their platform. This allows you to see where the other traders are placing their trades and what strategies they are employing.
For example, you can see things such as the deals that were entered into, the prices that were locked in as well as the profits and losses of the individual traders. Not only is this a great way for you to follow those traders that are profitable but it also gives you a good sense of where market sentiment is going.
You can view social trading in two ways. Firstly, you can head on over to the social trading tab. This is the image on the right below and it will give you a snapshot of the current traders on Expert Option. Here you can see the general (up or down) as well as the leader boards of those traders that have done well.
You also can view all of the trades that were placed by others on the chart itself. Here you can see in real time which way they have positioned themselves. We found all of the social trading tabs on the chart a bit distracting but it could work for you.
This is another feature that Expert Option has included that could help to inform your trading. The analytics section is more for those traders who would like to have some fundamental analysis on particular assets and markets.
For example, the first section is a collection of videos that will take you through the latest market movements and news over the past week. We were quite impressed with these videos as they were well presented and had useful visuals and charts to support the data.
Another handy tab in the analytics section is the part that gives you an overview of the financial exchanges and what their trading hours are. This is more relevant for those traders that want to trade equities during the live market hours.
Expert Option PC Client
While the web-based platform is great for convenience sake, the most optimal trading experience comes from the PC clients. This is because you will be using your PC to trade instead of your web browser. This is naturally more efficient as we found the web interface to be quite resource heavy on the browser.
Moreover, if you are looking for the quickest execution then the desktop client is a better choice. This is because your orders are being sent directly from your PC to the Expert Option servers. When you place your orders on your web browser then they have to first pass through the website architecture.
The desktop client is available for download on Microsoft windows as well as Mac OS. Once you have downloaded the programs and loaded them, you will be asked for your Expert Option login credentials.
Expert Option App
The app is really well laid out and it is clear they spent a great deal of money developing it. They have tried to get as much functionality into the app that they can. Compared to some of the other apps that we have seen, this one seems to have many more features.
Indeed, if we take a look at some of the ratings of the app in both stores, the majority of the feedback is positive. In the few cases that there are negative reviews or bad experiences, the Expert Option customer support staff seem to be quick to respond.
So, should you use the mobile app?
Well, it really depends what sort of trading experience you are after. Although the app is quite advanced compared to its peers, it still lacks much of the functionality that you will have on the desktop client and the web-based interface.
Moreover, mobile trading will have to rely on mobile connectivity which can sometimes be pretty slow. This can be frustrating when you are trying to open / close trades and the mobile data falls away for a few seconds.
With that being said, the mobile app is more suitable for beginner traders who are looking for an easy and convenient way to trade the markets.
This is another place where we think Expert Option tends to stand out. They have quite extensive educational material for traders.
This is accessible either through the platform in the "education" tab or on the homepage in the footer. If you are to navigate to the education tab you will see the numerous topics that they cover. These include the following:
- Fundamental Analysis
- Technical Analysis
- Graphical Analysis
- Psychology of Trading
- Trading Strategies
- Glossary of Terms
There are also a range of videos that they have for the traders. These are helpful for those new traders that need guidance on how to make the most of the platform. These are all in the "How to get started" tab.
Compared to all the other Option brands, it seems that Expert Option has a relatively clean online reputation. However, we did notice that there were a few issues raised with the location of the company. Some traders were uncomfortable with the St Vincent registration.
There were of course quite a few clients who took issue with the bonuses that they had accepted. As we had stated above, Bonuses come with onerous terms and conditions and these clients probably did not read them or were not aware of them.
There were also one or two complaints about the pay-out ratio being adjusted for those clients that had a strong trading record. Of course, this could be hard to verify as the reviewer did not leave evidence of the claim.
Lastly, there were a few complaints that traders had about withdrawal requirements. They were claiming that Expert Option was not authorising their requests. However, upon examination it seems that they had not properly authenticated their accounts.
What We Didn't Like
While the Expert Option platform is highly efficient and there is a plethora of resources that are available to the trader, there were a few things that we thought warranted improvement.
Firstly, we have to take issue with their regulatory licence. While it is not meant as a slight against the Vanuatu regulators, a licence in Europe is much more secure. If Expert Option wants to gain the full trust of their European clients then they should aim to get regulated in the EU or an equivalent.
Moreover, if Expert Option was able to get a European licence then they could take clients from the continent. This would serve them well as it could increase their user base.
On the platform side, we would have preferred it if they had more options in terms of expiry times. Some clients prefer not to trade with such short expiry times and this is especially true for those clients who do not use technical analysis for their trading.
Lastly, we would have liked to have seen some cryptocurrency funding options. They do, after all, offer a range of different cryptocurrency assets to trade so it is only logical that they would offer funding options as well.
There are also numerous other brokers which offer this option as it allows them to administer the accounts anonymously, it reduces the fees and it is quick and effective. Perhaps Expert Option will include this at a later date.
Something else that you may realise is that Expert Option is linked to EO.finance. This is a separate service that is also available to traders from the platform. Essentially, it is a cryptocurrency wallet and exchange service.
You can exchange both cryptocurrency and fiat on the platform. If you wanted to buy in fiat then you have a range of options including through the use of a credit / debit card. Hence, if you were looking for a mere exchange than a trading experience, it could be for you.
There is also a pretty large selection of coins that you can buy with this wallet. They make a market in over 40 different cryptocurrency assets. This is advantageous for those traders who were looking for a "fiat" gateway where they could easily buy and sell some of these smaller cap altcoins with their fiat currency.
The Crypto Wallet
Once you have purchased your coins you can also make use of the EO.finance wallet provided. This is available in a number of different forms. For example, it can be used as a mobile wallet on an Apple device or on an Android.
You can also use the wallet online through either the web version or through the browser plugin. The browser plugin is currently available on Firefox and Chrome. We would suggest that you use the plugins and apps over the web-based wallet. Your risk of loss through a website is much more pronounced than it is locally on a device.
The wallet also includes the company's proprietary coin (the EO Coin). This can be considered as their own version of the Binance coin or the KuCoin offered on other exchanges. When you complete your transactions with their EO coin then you will get 50% off of the fees related to said transactions.
As we have shown in this Expert Option review, the broker is no doubt a great option for traders who want advanced trading software as well as extensive education.
They will also appreciate the range of different accounts that they can open with varying levels of support and trading functionality. It also helps the trader who is new to make use of the completely free and anonymous demo account.
We also liked the fact that there was responsive customer service that dealt with all of our queries promptly. Those in other countries will find it useful that they have translated the website into a number of different languages and have customer support available in three.
As mentioned, there were a few places that we thought Expert Option could improve. These mostly related to their regulations, platform and funding options. We hope that Expert Option could take this into consideration.
Moreover, our review has found that although Expert Option operates in an industry that has faced a great deal of issues in the past, they appear to be completely above board and have a relatively clean reputation.
So, is Expert Option the broker for you?
We would encourage you to do your own research. But if you are interested in a strong platform with numerous cryptocurrency assets and you are in a country that Expert Option operates in, then may indeed be a solution.
Disclaimer: These are the writer’s opinions and should not be considered investment advice. Readers should do their own research.
Disclaimer: These are the writer’s opinions and should not be considered investment advice. Readers should do their own research.