Investous Review: What You Need to Know About this UK-Banned Broker

Investous

Investous is a CySEC registered broker that provides trading in CFDs and forex. They have an alright selection of assets with generally average spreads. The company is regulated by the Cyprus regulator CySEC, although they have faced a suspension in the past. They are currently banned from operating within the UK and have had warnings against them by other jurisdictions. They charge higher than usual withdrawal fees and significantly higher than usual inactivity fees.

Investous
Founded 2018
Headquarters Cyprus
Registrations CySEC
Platforms MT4, Web Platform
Assets 270+

About Investous

The broker is part of the parent company F1 Markets Limited. This company operates several other brokers similar to Investous. They have had significant trouble with CySEC and other regulators in the past. The broker has a current registration with the Cyprus regulator CySEC. This registration requires the firm to meet stringent standards on consumer protections.

There are mandates on minimum operational capital to ensure that they can honor trader withdrawals. The broker must also maintain separate accounts and submit themselves to external audits when the regulators deem these audits necessary.

Our Investous review found that the parent company F1Markets claims two brands on their website, Investous and StrattonMarkets. They say that StrattonMarkets is their flagship brand and has been built to comply with new regulations that regulators have established in the past several years. Beyond these two brokers, CySEC says that F1Markets also has approved domains for 24CM and Europrime.

Fees at Investous

Investous employs floating spreads for all of their assets. There aren’t any commission on any trades with this broker. Their spreads are fairly standard on most assets, with cryptocurrencies being the least competitive area.

The broker also collects revenue through inactivity fees. This broker begins charging inactivity fees after only one month of inactivity, much sooner than other comparable brokers. The fee starts at $10 per month, moves up to $80 per month after two months, $120 per month after three months, and after six months, the inactivity fee is a whopping $200 per month. These are really staggering inactivity fees, far beyond most other brokers.

Investous Account Types

Like many other brokers, Investous offers four different account types from basic up to VIP. Setting up a basic account requires a deposit of $250, marginally higher than the deposits at similar brokers. The highest account, VIP, requires a massive deposit of $50,000. The higher account types give traders a more favorable spread. The higher accounts also receive several free withdrawals per month, allowing traders to avoid the broker’s withdrawal fees

The broker has a variety of tools and resources they make available to their users. Some of these require different account types. Investous produce webinars and lessons for their users. A basic account can access just one lesson per month. Gold accounts get one webinar each month and access to two lessons. A platinum account gives access to a higher tier of advanced lessons, up to three per month, and two webinars. VIP members can access five lessons and five webinars.

Available Assets

Investous offers traders a good selection of assets. They have 46 forex pairs available from this time, including some currencies that are often overlooked by other brokers. South African Rand, Singapore Dollar, and Hungarian Forint are just a few of these. The firm also offers CFDs on many different assets. Precious metals from silver to platinum along, and commodities from base metals like zinc and copper to staple crops like corn and wheat. CFDs are also available on stock and indices, and an above-average selection of cryptocurrencies. While many brokers only have CFDs on Bitcoin and Ethereum, this broker includes more obscure coins like Monera, Stellar, and Dash.
Investous Review

Trading Platforms

Investous has several trading platforms available. They have their own web-based trading platform, along with access to MetaTrader4.

Most users choose to use the standard MetaTrader4. This platform is prevalent among online brokers. It allows traders to go to multiple brokers and always have a standardized trading platform. The platform has an industry-leading charting package that allows traders to analyze their options fully. On top of this, the platform has automatic trading tools that are key to implement modern trading strategies.

The web trading platform available with Investous is fairly standard as far as CFD platforms go. Users will find most of the standard features they would expect, largely laid out as they are used to. Several parameters can filter the available assets for easier browsing. They can be sorted by asset class or by popularity.

Their charts are simple and easy to understand, with some useful features and trading tools. There is a sentiment indicator for each chart that lets users know how other traders on the platform are feeling about that asset. Our Investous review found more indicators and analysis tools than we would have expected from a web-based trading platform.

The Investous mobile app is available for both iPhone and Android. It gives users access to essentially the entire range of features available through the web platform. There are dynamic trading charts, trading signals, and potential users can even set up a demo account through the app. Users can view their positions, place orders, and adjust account details through the app.


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Educational Resources

For our Investous review, we took a look at what the broker calls their “Education Centre.” It’s not uncommon for brokers to provide users with a variety of educational resources. These can range from video lessons to seminars, to basic articles on how trading works and explaining the different assets.

One of the resources that the broker offers is its economic calendar. This calendar lays out some of the big economic news to watch out for. This lets users keep track of what events they should be following that might affect the prices of their assets. The calendar tracks numerous reports and conferences where one would expect any economic news to break.

Giving users a heads-up about expected volatility allows them to react swiftly as the market shifts. The calendar shows expected shifts vs. what actually happened for past events, giving traders a peek into how accurate the system has performed.

Their website features various educational videos that help new traders learn the basics of investing in Forex and CFDs. On top of these, the broker puts out new videos every day. These videos feature daily market updates to keep traders up to date on current market affairs. They also do a rundown of any upcoming events that traders should be keeping an eye on.

Support

Investous has a few different options for people looking to contact them. Their website has a live chat to get in touch with a representative quickly. Traders can also reach them by phone at their offices in Cyprus. However, they haven’t made their business hours and availability known to the public. You can also reach them by email or by filling out the contact form on their website.

Demo Account

Before you get started trading, you can set up a demo account with Investous to try out their platform and evaluate the assets they offer. The demo account allows traders to invest up to $100,000 in demo funds and see how they do. The prices are all real, meaning investors can see what they would have made if they put down real money. Setting up a demo account is simple, requiring just your name, email address, and phone number. If you do create a real account, you will still have access to your demo account and can switch between the two.

Deposit and Withdrawal Options and Fees

Investous doesn’t make their withdrawal policy clear to traders. There are withdrawal fees each time that a user goes to withdraw their funds. Credit and debit cards face a charge of 3.5%, while the various online payment processors face charges between 0.9 and 3.5%. Users can get their money through wire transfer. These carry a set charge of around $30, depending on the currency. There is also a strange $50 fee that applies in certain obscure cases regarding users with only one position and user verification.

Banned in the UK

In June 2020, Investous was one of several CFD brokers banned by the UK’s FCA. The FCA banned these brokers due to their use of falsified celebrity endorsements to market CFDs to UK residents. The regulator says that these types of schemes have cost UK traders hundreds of thousands of pounds. The ban applied to several brokers, including F1 Markets Ltd, the parent company of Investous. The other brands run by F1 Markets, StrattonMarkets, and Europrime, were also affected by this ban.

The FCA said that the banned brokers didn’t properly disclose the nature of CFDs to investors and that they had unfairly pressured traders into making large investments. The FCA removed the passporting rights of these firms, meaning that although they hold CySEC licenses, they can no longer provide services to UK citizens.

CySEC Suspension

Following these actions by the UK, just days later, CySEC partially suspended the brokers affected by the FCA’s ban. The FCA had revealed the false celebrity endorsement practices of these firms, and CySEC quickly reacted by suspending their licenses for one month while the brokers enacted corrective measures.

The Swedish regulator FI released a statement in the days following the action of the FCA and CySEC. Their statement detailed that there had been an increased number of complaints against these brokers by investors within Sweden.

The regulator said these complaints focused on the brokers’ aggressive marketing, withdrawal difficulties, and hidden fees. The complaints also covered the lack of proper disclosure on the risks associated with CFDs. The Italian regulator CONSOB also warned investors against F1Markets Ltd following the FCA and CySEC actions.

The Takeaway on Investous

Investous is a standard online forex and CFD broker. There is very little that makes them stand out. Their asset selection is what one would expect from any online broker. They have the same withdrawal fees and many other brokers, with their inactivity and other fees being a bit worse than most. The minimum deposit of $250 is a bit high, but not shocking.

The big thing to take into account when considering Investous is the very recent actions of financial regulators against them. A lot of brokers have some trouble in the past, but these events happened in mid-2020. A complete ban by the FCA is a serious matter, and then further action by CySEC only gives more reason for concern. Our Investous review has found that their offerings aren’t anything special. We don’t see any benefits worth overlooking their issues with regulators.

Brokers Owe You Honesty

Many investors have found themselves facing overly aggressive sales tactics when dealing with online forex and CFD brokers. Combining these tactics and a lack of proper risk disclosure has led to countless people losing substantial funds when investing in CFDs. Regulated brokers have to meet the standards set by regulators. Their investors have the right to protection from their actions. If you believe your broker has acted against your best interests, call our team today for a free consultation. Together, we can find the path to retrieving your funds.

Is Investous Still Banned by the FCA?

Yes, the FCA has not changed their decision to revoke passporting rights from Investous and other firms. In the time since they’ve gone on to do the same to other brokers as well.

Is Investous Still Suspended by CySEC?

No, the broker implemented corrective measures to the satisfaction of the regulator, and CySEC removed the suspension after one month.

Should New Investors Trade CFDs with This Broker?

No, CFDs are a complex asset that isn’t appropriate for new investors. Between 74 and 89 percent of retail investors lose money when trading CFDs.

Does Investors Charge Withdrawal Fees?

Yes, on all but the highest account types. Users face percentage fees on most withdrawal methods, with set fees for wire transfers.