Hedgestone is a binary options broker which is owned and operated by a Bulgarian company Nevski Ps Ltd. Although the company provides the trades are cleared by the Belize registered Icon Markets Limited, the customers deal only with unregulated Nevski Ps Ltd. Icon Markets Limited is regulated by the Belize International Financial Services Commission (IFSC) under license #IFSC/60/461/TS/17. Traders in most countries around the world are welcome, but Hedgestone does not take traders from the USA, Australia, Canada, or South Africa.
On the whole, Hedgestone does not offer much in the way of impressive features, and there are some severe informational gaps on the website. It is very hard to find even the most basic information about the broker’s features and requirements, like the minimum deposit or a list of assets available to trade. Let’s take a look at what you can expect if you decide to trade here anyway.
Opening Your Account
Registering an account is simple (in theory—I got some kind of error when I tried). Once you do, you can make your deposit and start trading. The minimum deposit amount is $250, and account currencies available include euro, US dollar, Canadian dollar, and Great Britain pound. You can make your deposit via credit or debit card, wire transfer, Skrill, Neteller, WebMoney, QIWI, SOFORT, iDeal, CashU, or EcoPayz.
Fees, Withdrawals, and Bonus Policy
Fees, withdrawals, and the bonus policy are three areas where I am not too fond of Hedgestone’s terms.
The minimum withdrawal amount isn’t bad—$10. So long as you have not accepted a bonus and your withdrawal amount is under $1,000, the fees are nonexistent—no complaints there.
But if you are withdrawing more than $1,000 and/or you have accepted a bonus, fees can range anywhere from $25-$50, and none of your withdrawals are free. Furthermore, if you are withdrawing $5,000 or more, the fee is $50 or 1% of the amount, whichever is higher. This can add up after a while.
The site charges inactivity fees as well which are quite hefty. You will either pay $100 a month or 10% of your account balance, whichever is greater. Your account is considered to be inactive after just 120 days, so if you plan to take a few months off of trading, you should makes sure you have withdrawn your funds first.
Then there is the matter of the bonus policy. Where withdrawals are concerned, it is pretty harsh. If you have not met the turnover requirement and you attempt to initiate a withdrawal, you can take out your original funds (if you didn’t burn through them), but you cannot withdraw the bonus or any profits.
Furthermore, if you do this, “the Client’s bonus and profits will be declared null and void.” In other words, the company will actually reset your withdrawal and trading balance to zero. You then have to start all over again. A lot of other companies won’t let you withdraw the bonus or the winnings either, but they at least will not forcibly reset your balance. On those sites, you would just continue trading toward the volume requirement.
Trading on Hedgestone
Hedgestone uses the popular SpotOption trading platform. If you have traded on other sites which also use that platform, you will know your way around. If not, you can learn the ropes quickly. You can trade on your Android device if you download the relevant app.
The minimum trade size for most trade types is $25, and the maximum is $5,000. There are more than 200 assets in all, including stocks, currencies, commodities, and indices. Trade types include High/Low, Pairs, Long Term, 60 Seconds, One Touch, Ladder, and FX/CFD. So that is a good bit of variety.
Double Up, Early Close and Rollover all are available to help you control when you exit your trades. These features are more or less standard among binary options brokers these days. There is also market news, but otherwise not much in the way of trading tools.
Resources and Customer Service
The site has an FAQ, but it is incredibly sparse and uninformative. There is also an education section you can check out. Video tutorials and webinars are apparently on their way soon. A selection of trading guides is available right now; all are quite basic, and many do not contain the answers that you may be searching for (like an asset index, which is nowhere to be found on the site).
This goes back to what I was saying earlier. This site really needs to do more to provide useful information to traders both about the site features and binary options in general. A demo account is also absent. You have to practice trading elsewhere, so that is yet another area where Hedgestone falls short.
If you need to contact customer service, support is offered via email, telephone, and live chat. I was unable to get anyone to answer the live chat, but this may be because I was checking on a weekend.
One intriguing support feature on Hedgestone which I have not seen anywhere else is screen sharing. If you need help with some technical problem or you have a trading question, you can apparently show the agent your screen. I can see how this could be exceptionally useful in some situations. This may be about the only area where I have noticed Hedgestone being particularly innovative.
Conclusion: Hedgestone Needs to make Significant Improvements
As just mentioned, screen sharing in live chat seems to be the only really unique feature which sets Hedgestone apart from the competition. In all other respects, the company either blends into the masses of brokers offering similar services and features, or stand out in all the wrong ways. The lack of resources and information on the site is really troubling, and the bonus policy is far from friendly. The withdrawal fees are also a bit over the top.
For these reasons, right now I would advise traders to avoid Hedgestone. There are a lot of other binary options brokers out there which are in better shape than this one, and which offer far more in the ways of tools, information, and features.