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SDFX Global Review: Real or Fake?

Ivo Kolchev| Updated January 18th, 2024

Hello, fellow investor! This review will give our honest opinion of SDFX Global, an unregulated broker specialising in forex trading that promises high returns on investment.

SDFX Global offers trading in the currency markets. However, when writing this article, the company’s website hardly provides information on its trading terms, account opening process, etc. Comparing terms and conditions before you open an account is vital to getting the most out of your trading account.

Furthermore, to the best of our knowledge, SDFX Global’s financial markets activities are not regulated by any government body. This is a major red flag that should not be ignored. 

As you can see for yourself, the broker’s website lists random text at the bottom of its webpage, where industry practice is to place the name of the regulatory body:

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View from SDFX Global Website

Having a reputable regulator in place is a non-negotiable precondition when choosing a stock broker. As such, we do not recommend opening an account with SDFX Global.

As a general note, you should always be sceptical of brokers promising high returns, regardless of whether it is SDFX Global or another broker. Considering SDFX Global is particularly active in Asia and specifically India, we will use the country as an example of what you could reasonably expect to make in the markets:

  • Indian government bonds currently yield around 7% per year.
  • The iShares India 50 ETF has returned around 9% over the past 10 years.

As you can tell, any broker promising you high single-digit returns every single month (online reports claim SDFX Global used to offer 8% a month) is to be taken very sceptically.

Considering all of the above, we strongly recommend you consider alternative brokers if you are looking to trade on the financial markets

Read on to find our top alternative picks!

Is SDFX Global real or fake?

Given that SDFX Global is not regulated by any financial institution, we can confidently say that SDFX Global should not be trusted. 

The high returns offered are highly suspicious and most probably not real.

SDFX Global alternatives

From what you have read on SDFX Global, it is normal to be disappointed, but don’t worry, we have you covered! Solid alternative brokers are available! You can read all our broker reviews here, while below, we will list our top picks for alternative brokers available in India (if you live outside India, chances are Interactive Brokers is still available in your country).

SDFX Global Alternatives for 2024

  1. Interactive Brokers: Best overall broker
  2. Zerodha: Most used platform in India and best app
  3. ICICI Direct: Best for professional investors
  4. Vested: Best for beginners
  5. Groww: Best for low fees
  6. INDMoney: Best for financial management features
Broker Minimum Deposit US Stock Fees
Interactive Brokers $500 (or equivalent in INR) Between $0.0005 and $0.0035 per US share (min. $0.35)
Zerodha ₹0 Between 0% and 0.03% per order, depending on the product
ICICI Direct ₹0 Between $0 and $2.75 per trade, depending on your subscription plan
Vested ₹0 0.2% for Basic plan

0.1% for Premium plan

Groww ₹0 $0.02 per sell charged by exchange
INDmoney ₹0 0.15%

#1 Interactive Brokers

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Visit Interactive BrokersSDFX Global Review: Real or Fake? 3

Interactive Brokers at a glance

Products availableStocks, ETFs, Options, Futures, Forex, Commodities, Bonds, and Funds
Minimum deposit$500 (or equivalent in INR)
Deposit MethodsWire bank transfer, Wise
Fees and CommissionBetween $0.0005 and $0.0035 per US share (min. $0.35)

Trader Workstation (TWS), the proprietary trading platform of Interactive Brokers, is one of the most innovative trading platforms developed by a brokerage firm. It includes two subsets: the “TWS Mosaic”, which displays a fully customisable workspace, and the “Classic TWS”, where you can find more complex/advanced tools for more experienced traders.  

You get comprehensive order management, technical charts, watchlists, and other portfolio tools in a single view. You can organise your trading activity by asset classes and, at the same time, keep up to date with relevant market news impacting the markets. TWS offers powerful trading tools like ComboTrader, which helps traders create proprietary combination order strategies or choose from multiple templates with predefined programs to execute day trades.

Interactive Brokers also offers a web-based alternative called “Client Portal”, a “light” version of TWS, which lets you keep track of your portfolio performance and other essential features with few constraints. The same goes for its mobile app, which enables you to check every piece of information on the go.

We opened an account and extensively tested TWS along with the mobile app. For traders looking for advanced charting tools and depth of market information, such as conference call transcripts, news, financial instrument info, etc. Trader Workstation is truly indispensable. At the same time, the mobile app came in handy when we had to close a position on the go after a surprising market move. Likewise, the mobile app is excellent when you have idle cash on hand and see a good opportunity during a market pullback. We did have trouble finding specific options contracts on the mobile app, for example – thus, for niche financial instruments in which you have not traded recently and do not have an open position, you need the desktop version to get your work done on time.

Please check our Interactive Brokers review to find out more about the broker.

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View from Interactive Brokers Web Trader

#2 Zerodha

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Zerodha at a glance

Products availableStocks, ETFs, Options, Futures, Bonds, and Funds
Minimum deposit$0
Deposit MethodsWire bank transfer
Fees and CommissionBetween 0% and 0.03% per order, depending on the product
RegulatorsSEBI, RBI, NSE, BSE

Zerodha has more than one crore active clients, contributing almost 15% of all Indian retail trading volumes. This app is recommended for beginners, advanced traders and investors owing to its robust technology platform.

Zerodha Kite is the company’s in-house flagship mobile trading software app. At present, the Kite 3.0 web platform offers market watch, advanced charting with more than 100 indicators, advanced order types like cover order, good till triggered (GTT) order and fast order placements, among other features.

Moreover, a user can use Zerodha Kite as a Chrome extension where features, such as order placement stock tracking, can be availed.

When using this trading platform, you can enjoy a range of useful features. You’ll experience high-speed streaming of market data and get access to advanced charts with a user-friendly interface. They’ve introduced a “sticky order window” that allows you to keep the order window open, making it effortless to place multiple orders with the same input.

For those looking to manage risk and understand their trades better, a “leverage indicator” helps you check the amount of leverage you’re getting for a particular trade compared to your equity stocks. If you prefer long-term investing, you can benefit from free equity delivery trading without any brokerage fees.

Investors can also directly invest in mutual funds (MF) without worrying about commission charges. If you’re inclined towards more aggressive trading, the platform provides up to 20x leverage for intraday trading.

What’s more, you have the option to consolidate your accounts into a convenient 3-in-1 setup, including a demat account, a trading account, and a bank account with IDFC First Bank. Additionally, you can apply for Initial Public Offerings (IPOs) directly through the app, making the investment process even more streamlined and accessible.

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Zerodha Kite Offering

#3 ICICI Direct

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ICICI Direct at a glance

Products availableStocks, ETFs, Options, Commodities, Bonds, Funds, and Insurance
Minimum deposit$0
Deposit MethodsWire bank transfer
Fees and CommissionBetween $0 and $2.75 per trade, depending on your subscription plan
RegulatorsSEBI, RBI, NSE, BSE

ICICI Direct is a trusted company founded in 1995. It allows you to open an ICICI Direct Global account, which allows you to invest in six major markets around the world -the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Japan, Singapore, and Hong Kong.

It is very easy to open an ICICI Direct Global account. You can do everything online in just a few clicks. You don’t need any paper documents. The cool thing is that you can only buy a small portion of stocks in the US market, so you don’t need a lot of money to get started. Additionally, there are no rules that require you to keep a certain amount of money in your account. You have the freedom to invest as you wish.

ICICI Direct partners with another company called Interactive Brokers LLC (the company mentioned above) to manage its digital platform. This company helps buy and sell stocks. Additionally, they offer more than 80 investment portfolios managed by experts in different regions of the world. This means you can follow their knowledge to make investments.

This app makes it easy to track your investment progress. You can check all your different investments in one place and log in with your fingerprint or face.

Managing your investments is easy because you can create lists of things you want to watch. There are also pre-made lists and tools to help you buy and sell stocks. If you like dark backgrounds on apps, the app has a “dark mode” to make it easier on your eyes. You can also use a feature called “Flash Trade” to buy and sell quickly.

When it comes to cost, ICICI Direct has some good options. You can choose a plan with no registration fee or no brokerage fee. They have three projects:

Global Classic (no subscription fee and $2.75 per transaction), Global Select (₹999 per year and $1.99 per transaction), and Global Advantage (₹9,999 per year and no fee for each trade).

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View from ICICI Direct stock section

#4 Vested

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Visit VestedSDFX Global Review: Real or Fake? 3

Vested at a glance

Products availableStocks, ETFs, Options, and Bonds
Minimum deposit$0
Deposit MethodsWire bank transfer
Fees and Commission0.2% for Basic plan; 0.1% for Premium plan
RegulatorsSEBI, SEC

Vested Finance is an online platform that helps people in India invest in stocks and ETFs from the United States. They have an app that makes it easy to trade over 5,000 different stocks and ETFs. One cool feature is that you can buy a small portion of popular companies like Amazon or Google for as little as $1.

The app is designed to be user-friendly, so both beginners and experienced investors can use it easily. You can check real-time stock prices, get news updates, and see interactive charts and other data right on the app. This gives you the information you need to make smart investment decisions. Vested also provides research content and insights about the US markets so you can stay informed and find potential investment opportunities.

Vested has different investment options to suit your preferences. They offer ready-made portfolios called “Vests” that are curated with specific goals in mind. These Vests offer a diversified mix of stocks and ETFs that align with different themes or strategies. It’s quick and easy to get started with Vested. You can open an account within minutes through their fully digital onboarding process. They partnered with a US-regulated broker, DriveWealth LLC, allowing Indian investors to access the US stock market.

Vested has two types of subscription plans: Basic and Premium. These plans are made to meet the different needs of investors. The Basic plan costs a one-time fee of ₹250 and gives you important features like easy money transfers, access to curated Vests ( ready-made portfolios), and basic research tools called AlphaScreener Basic.

On the other hand, the Premium plan is priced at a monthly fee of ₹375.00 and offers even more benefits. With the Premium plan, you can make unlimited free withdrawals using a feature called Vested Direct. You also get access to advanced research tools called AlphaScreener Plus, priority support, exclusive Vests, and premium content that are not available with the Basic plan.

These subscription plans give you options to choose from based on how much you want to pay and the features you need. It’s important to pick the plan that suits you best and helps you make the most of your investments.

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Vested Finance Investing Plans

#5 Groww

Visit GrowwSDFX Global Review: Real or Fake? 3

Groww at a glance

Products availableStocks, Futures, Options, SIPs, and Funds
Minimum deposit$0
Deposit MethodsWire bank transfer
Fees and Commission$0.02 per sell charged by exchange
RegulatorsSEBI, RBI, AMFI

Groww is an investment platform offering its users a range of features. These features are divided into basic and premium subscriptions.

The basic features include the seamless ability to buy and sell stocks, mutual funds, and ETFs. Users can track their portfolio performance, view historical data, and analyse stocks and mutual funds using comprehensive charts and indicators.

In addition to the basic functionalities, Groww offers premium features to enhance the investment experience. Investors can export and import trade data, search for shareholders of a particular company, and access the latest company announcements, news, and events. This helps users make informed decisions and stay updated about their investments.

Groww stands out by providing a combination of appealing features, distinctive screening procedures, and popular investing topics. With cutting-edge screening tools, users can find investments that match their goals based on parameters like market capitalisation, industry preferences, and financial ratios.

There are several advantages to using Groww. The platform has a user-friendly interface suitable for investors of all levels. It provides comprehensive data and analytics, empowering users with insights for informed decision-making. Groww has received positive feedback from users and experts, who appreciate its design, customer support, investment options, and efforts to simplify the investment process.

Some additional benefits of Groww include commission-free investing in mutual funds, a quick and simple account opening process for trading and Demat accounts, and the ability to buy digital gold, US FDs, US ETFs, and US stocks.

Overall, Groww offers a user-friendly platform with extensive features, making it accessible for investors and providing them with the tools and information needed for successful investing.

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View from Groww website

#6 INDmoney

indmoney logo
Visit INDmoneySDFX Global Review: Real or Fake? 3

INDmoney at a glance

Products availableStocks, ETFs, Insurance, SIPs, and Funds
Minimum deposit$0
Deposit MethodsWire bank transfer
Fees and Commission0.15%

INDmoney is a popular investment platform in India that makes it easier for Indians to invest in US stocks traded on exchanges such as the NASDAQ and the NYSE. The platform was launched in 2019 and currently charges a 0.15% fee on all US stock trades.

Opening an account with INDmoney is quick and easy. This will only take a few minutes. Additionally, INDmoney is safe because they have partnered with trusted US brokers like Drivewealth, LLC and Alpaca Securities LLC to ensure Indian investors can trade safely and legally.

Their Super Money app has lots of features to help you manage your money wisely. You can have a Demat & Trading account, automatically track your money, invest in mutual funds, use a calculator to plan your investments, buy insurance, access an IPO centre, view expense report details, use INsta Cash, and even track your credit. These tools can help you achieve your financial goals and make informed financial choices.

Regarding the smallest amount you can invest, INDmoney makes it easy for you. With their US Stocks account, you can invest as little as $1 in companies like Apple, Netflix, and Tesla. You can do all your transactions directly on the INDmoney platform, and it’s hassle-free.

If you’re unsure which stocks to choose, refer to available lists or talk to your asset manager. They can provide you with a personalised plan for your investment. 

If you want to withdraw money from your US stock account and deposit it in an Indian bank, you will have to pay a fee of $5 per request.

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View from INDmoney website

The Bottom Line

With SDFX Global’s website no longer providing adequate information, there is no way to make a fair evaluation of the broker’s terms and conditions. The lack of clear regulatory oversight is another glaring red flag for us, as without a regulator,  investors cannot be assured their trades are dealt with according to the best industry practice.  At the end of the day, who will you raise your concerns with if things go wrong?

Considering the regulatory issues and the lack of clear trading terms and conditions, we strongly suggest you consider alternative brokers to SDFX Global.

Even with the best brokers, it is a wise choice to diversify your trading exposure with competitors. In that way, should one broker fail, you will still have access to your other broker’s account!

Ivo Kolchev
Investor & Finance Writer

Ivo is a former portfolio manager and financial advisor, turned into a freelance finance writer and stock trader. He enjoys following the financial markets and have invested for over ten years.