Best Professional Trading Accounts

Enjoy higher leverage today and negative balance protection with a professional trading account. We've compared the best pro trading accounts USA, and reviewed their eligibility criteria.

Eligibility criteria

We reviewed the eligibility criteria behind the professional accounts featured on this page, including FxPro's and AvaTrade's professional accounts, and summarised our findings below. You'll need to meet at least two of the following three criteria to be eligible. Importantly, there's no automaticity and your broker will have the last word.

Criteria #1: Sufficient trading activity in the last 12 months

Requirement: you have carried out transactions, in significant size, on the "relevant market" at an average frequency of 10 per quarter over the previous four quarters (with a regulated broker). The "relevant market" includes OTC derivatives such, as leveraged CFDs or Forex.

Evidence: you'll need to provide recent (within last month) account statements in PDF format, from trading accounts with regulated brokers.

Criteria #2: financial instrument portfolio in excess of EUR 500,000

Requirement: you have a financial instrument portfolio in excess of EUR 500,000 (including cash deposits and financial instruments). Financial instruments include shares, debt instruments and derivatives (only cash deposits made to fund, or profits realised from investing in derivatives). This does not include real estate, direct commodity ownership or the notional value of derivatives.

Evidence: you'll need to provide recent (within last month) bank account statements and / or account statements in PDF format from trading accounts with regulated brokers. Alternatively, some brokers will accept a statement from a notary public confirming your net worth.

Criteria #3: relevant professional experience

Requirement: you work or have worked in the financial sector for at least one year in a professional position, which requires knowledge of the transactions or services you desire to engaged in (e.g. OTC derivatives such as leveraged CFDs or Forex).

Evidence: you'll need to provide a letter from a current or former employer confirming that you were employed for more than a year in the financial sector and your role required knowledge of OTC leveraged derivatives/trading. Alternatively, some brokers may accept a payslip, or a screenshot from the FCA register.

Pros and cons of being a professional client

Once your broker has categorised you as a professional, rather than a retail trader, you'll immediately enjoy higher leverage. This will magnify both your potential profits and losses.

You'll also continue to enjoy negative balance protection from, or, which means that you cannot lose more than your total deposit.

In addition, any funds you deposit with either AvaTrade, FxPro and eToro will remain segregated from your broker's own funds. However, this isn't necessarily the case. In the case of, "your money will no longer be held in a segregated account, therefore when you fund your account, the ownership of your funds are transferred to (Fortrade) for the purpose of covering your obligations", unless otherwise agreed in writing.

Last but not least, you may no longer be covered by your regulator's investor compensation fund (depending on your jurisdiction). For example, if you live in the UK, you'll no longer be covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). And if you live in the European Union, you will no longer be eligible for the Investor Compensation Fund (ICF).

Importantly, your classification as a professional trader need not be permanent. If you change your mind, you can ask your broker to re-classify you as a retail trader at any time. And finally, if you're looking to trade large volumes, why not take a look at our selection of the best VIP trading accounts.