ADS Securities Review

  • Regulated By Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates
  • Headquarters Abu Dhabi
Established : 2011
Country : UAE
U.S. Clients Allowed : No

Background

ADS Securities is often picked by the traders for its wide-range of services, markets and regulatory statutes, and its platform offerings of MT4 and its flagship platform – OREX. The online broker has cost-effective active trader accounts, while smaller traders with lower balances will find higher spreads. Their customer support is limited to local working hours.

Pros

  • Cost-effective commission rates for active FX traders
  • Regulated in multiple major jurisdictions
  • Reasonable margin rates
  • Flagship OREX web-based HTML 5 platform

Cons

  • Limited Customer support, operational only during local working hours
  • OREX desktop needs outdated Silverlight plugin
  • Non-commission accounts have higher spreads
  • Rigid client segmentation by region

Established in 2011 in Abu Dhabi with an opening capital of $400 million, ADS Securities has come a long way to being the global brand it is today, with regulated subsidiaries in the UK, UAE, and Hong Kong. The company offers individual traders a multi-asset financial platform via its ADS Prime account offering, and through its wealth management solutions for its clients. ADS securities client portal  known as ‘My ADDS’ addresses all vital issues the traders may encounter in the trading account and gives access to a variety of exclusive services and tools. It is one of the best forex brokers in UAE

To cater to the money managers, ADS Securities launched its institutional suite of OREX platforms in 2013, which further tricked down to retail forex in Feb 2017 with the OREX web and mobile platforms for retail traders. The broker also offers industry-popular MetaTrader 4 platform with improved adds-on under ADS MT4 Plus. ADS Securities also introduced its OREX platform in Hong Kong for clients looking to trade in futures and securities.

ADS Securities caters to self-directed traders through its UK entity for Europe; via its UAE firm for the gulf and surrounding nations and ADS Securities Hong Kong entity with support in Singapore, which gives the broker-wide regional coverage across Europe & Asia.

ADS Securities Commissions & Fees

The spreads and commissions at ADS Securities vary depending on the account type opened and the range of account types that are available as per the ADS brand that one chooses which is often location and regulatory jurisdiction based.

For instance, for its UAE based centers, ADS offers 3 account types – Lite, Classic and Elite. The Lite account has a low minimum deposit of $100 making it more appealing to the most conservative of traders, whoever the spreads levied on this account is higher, compared to the other counterparts.

For instance, the Classic account requires just a minimum $5000 deposit and target spreads drop to 1.6 pips on the EURO/DOLLAR, compared to 2.4 pips on the Lite account. ADS Securities’ most popular offering is the Elite account, similar to a VIP-style account that requires a minimum $200,000 deposit, and comes with benefits beyond discounted spreads.

One major difference is that the Classic account provides access to both MT4 and OREX platform, whereas the Lite account lacks that option.

The account offerings at the broker’s UAE and UK firms are almost the same, the Prime Gold account in the UK, becomes the Prime Elite account at the Abu Dhabi center. Also in line with the UK firm, the other two basic accounts types have spreads ranging from 1.6 – 2.4 pips on the Euro/Dollar, making is a costlier option.

As the ADS securities average forex spreads are not available it’s not possible for us to make a fair comparison with firms that publish their numbers. This can be beneficial for the broker as its commissions and spreads appear competitive in the ECN Prime account.

Research

ADS Securities has a diverse range of research material across its website and trading platforms, varying from sentiment analysis to economic calendars, this, in addition to the industry –standard news from reputed broadcasters such as Dow Jones. The broker also streams content from third-party services as well as creates its own in-house daily market video updates which include technical and essential analysis made available from within the platform, giving the traders a rich depository of internal and external research material.

ADS Securities also offer social mirror trading platform, which comes with an incentive fee of 20%, which is similar to the hedge fund model, available on its Prime account. It also provides investors with further research-based tools when it comes to finding trading opportunities.

The research tools cover technical analysis tools from Autochartist, which enable traders to find and analyze ideas using automated technical analysis signals. The firm also offers forex sentiment report and widget on an everyday basis, which further provides depth to the research. Finally, in 2017 the broker added multiple similar research tools from Acuity to further enhance its market research tools for traders.

On the whole, the broker has plenty of premium research content and resources available on its website and trading platforms. Combined with MT4’s add-ons helps boost ADS Securities ranking higher in the research category.

ADS Securities Platforms & Tools

ADS Securities financial offerings include 57 spot forex pairs and a total of 810 CFDs available on its OREX web platform. Its MT4 platform offers a smaller range of CFDs.

The web version of OREX was launched around the time of our last review of the ADS Securities Hong Kong office, and we had a chance

As of 2017, the web version of OREX was launched for its Hong Kong entity and we had a chance to review the 11.0.0 version of the platform, which had a seamless layout and was developed on HTML5 in line with a modern trading platform. However, as of early 2018, the platform is not yet rolled out for its other subsidiaries and the login procedure for the UK, for instance, is cumbersome.

While the broker does offer OREX Optim which is the desktop version of the OREX suite, it requires an outdated plugin – Silverlight to function, hence it is nearly inaccessible to download using mainstream browsers.

As the desktop version depends on the Silverlight plugin, we would pick the up-to-date HTML web version of the OREX Optim desktop platform due to its limitations in function and accessibility.

OREX platform is also available to ADS Securities clients that want to trade in futures and securities out of its Hong Kong branch.

Apart from its flagship OREX platforms, ADS Securities is predominantly a MetaTrader broker when it comes to retail trading, and the firm offers various add-ons to improve the MT4’s default setup.

The add-ons offered on MetaTrader4 at ADS Securities are in line with what Pepperstone and Admiral Markets offer in terms of extras from a third-party developed FXBlueLLP, which comes with a quality range of sophisticated trading tools such as widgets that enhance the default version of MT4 and extra custom indicators.

Algo Builder tool, developed by Molanis is a desktop software programme which is also available at ADS Securities. This programme lets traders build auto-trading strategies for MetaTrader4 with a drag and drop model instead of sing MQL4 code, which is in line with the web algorithm building tool at FxPro.

During our review, this tool took a while to set up as a license is required to be procured and manually installed. For intermediate level traders with technical knowledge, the tool can is a beneficial feature for those who want to create an EA (Expert Advisor) functionality to automate their trading strategy without using coding in MQL4.

On the whole, the broker goes beyond the scope of a MetaTrader only broker to customize its offerings by adding the above-mentioned add-ons to its portfolio in addition to Autochartist and VPS hosting. More so the platform installation files come encased in different emulators which aid its compatibility with Mac, Linux, and other OS’.

Mobile Trading

Apart from the native MT4 mobile app, ADS Securities offers its flagship OREX platform for mobile on Andriod and IOS devices. During my last review, OREX mobile app was tested on various mobile phones and it operated smoothly in terms of the interface, navigation, and design. In terms of research, its offerings were robust with daily video updates along with other helpful features such as economic news and earnings calendar – all in tune with the web version of the platform.

The watchlist is also designed well, which enables a trader to add symbols and create an order type with just a few taps easily. Beyond research and rich watchlists offerings, the rest of the app was fair light in terms of the settings category.

Charting also lacks the ability to ad indicators or any drawing tool beyond a simple trend line, in line with the web version, which makes it slightly inadequate. Yet, it looks like in this category the broker is charted did go full screen when the device was held horizontally with the trend like a tool being displayed.

The OREX mobile app overall has a good base and is in sync with the web platform, However, the application needs improvements to level it with what the competitors have to offer. In fact, during my last review, the app was taken offline for a new demo, as the firm continues to invest in improving its new platform offerings. This is a move towards ensuring that OREX can compete against its peers with flagship mobile trading platforms.

Other Notes

ADS Securities offer spread-betting as in the UK it has tax benefits for the residents, which is treated differently to CFDs and is available to and accessible to the residents of the United Kingdom across 250 instruments.

ADS Securities launched crypto-trading via CFDs on Ethereum and Bitcoin in 2017, which aided in the broker meet the requirements of growing number of traders and clients wanting an exposure to cryptocurrencies trading without having to hold the underlying asset. The broker offers 4:1 leverage and a maximum trade size of 2 Bitcoin for every clip.

ADS Securities also is open that it hedges its cryptocurrencies CFD trades by trading the underlying asset with crypto exchanges.

The Bottom Line

With the OREX platform suite being a good base for the firm’s retail trading platform, the broker goes beyond the norm of being a typical MetaTrader brokerage by offerings add-ons for MT4 and offers to trade in almost 60 FX pairs and more than 800 CFDs.

We would like the web-based program to be made available across the firm’s global presence to help enhance ADS Securities score and that the desktop version made more up-to-date and easy to access without the Silverlight plugin.

In terms of customer service, the support is limited to those with smaller balances which is not the norm for a full-service broker. This is one of the areas where ADS securities could have improved,especially given the volume of assets they hold under management. Also, its rigid regional segmentation means that clients can only get in touch with the customer care during local working hours.

ADS Securities can be an ideal choice for active FX traders and those with large balances, such as institutional traders with HNI clients die to its Elite account offerings and co-related benefits. A point to note is that your location can be a limiting factor when it comes to opening an account with ADS securities.

Adam Graystone

Adam Graystone

Adam is a Forex trader who has worked within financial markets for over 12 years, including 6 years as an independent trader and financial advisor. Adam is a certified technical analyst and has an extensive experience in Forex and Commodity Futures trading, with his career spanning over different trading institutions including NYSE and Chicago Mercantile Exchange.