FBS Review: Reliable forex trading? Too many red flags.
FBS provides no information as to who owns or runs the company on their website.
The company does disclose a series of linked shell companies;
- FBS Inc. in the Marshall Islands
- FBS Markets Inc. in Belize
- HDC Technologies Ltd in Cyprus
All three are scam-friendly jurisdictions with little to no regulation of MLM companies.
FBS appears to have strong ties to India, with Alexa attributing 59% of traffic to FBS’ website to the country. Egypt is the second largest source of traffic at 4%.
FBS’ website domain (“fbs.com”) was first registered back in 1995. The current registration details are set to private.
Oddly enough FBS have excluded their domain from the Wayback Machine, making it difficult to tell when the current owners took possession of it.
FBS’ domain registration was last updated in July 2018. On their Facebook account FBS claims to have launched in 2009. Video uploads to FBS’ official YouTube channel began in 2012.
As always, if an MLM company is not openly upfront about who is running or owns it, think long and hard about joining and/or handing over any money.
FBS offers multi-tier trading accounts;
- Cent – “perfectly suits those who are just starting on their way to success on Forex”, minimum $1 deposit
- Micro – “ideal for those who want to calculate their profit precisely”, minimum $5 deposit
- Standard – “for experienced market players making their way to Forex heights”, minimum $100 deposit
- Zero Spread – “designed for those who prefer trading at the fastest speed”, minimum $500 deposit
- ECN – for those who want to feel the full power of trading with ECN technologies, minimum $1000 deposit
FBS provides to its trader customers with access to the MetaTrader4, MetaTrader5 platforms.
MetaTrader is presumably used by FBS under license from MetaQuotes Software.
FBS’ Compensation Plan
FBS refers to its affiliates as “partners”. FBS partners earn commissions on trading activity by recruited affiliates.
Trading commissions are paid down three levels of recruitment (unilevel):
- level 1 (personally recruited affiliates and traders) – 100%
- level 2 – 15%
- level 3 – 5%
The above percentages are paid on traded lots, which is a unit used to measure what is being traded (one lot can be a set currency amount, number of shares etc.).
FBS do differentiate affiliates from customers – both partner and trading signup options are offered.
Note that FBS do not disclose whether there are any affiliate membership costs.
As a purely “do-it-yourself” trading platform, I don’t have a problem with FBS. I didn’t see any mention of automation, which is typically the downfall of trading niche MLM companies.
The MLM side of the business is also solid being only paid on trading activity. Although I’m not exactly sure how 120% commissions in total can be paid on trading lots.
Even if you factor in broker fees, how is FBS covering 120% commission payouts on traded lots? Unless I’m missing something mathematically that makes no sense.
And that’s only the tip of the red flag iceberg. Dig deeper into FBS and the red flags really start to pile up.
For starters you have no idea who’s running the show or from where. Probably India (or Malaysia), but who knows?
Then there’s the shell companies registered in dodgy jurisdictions.
Cyprus, Belize and the Marshal Islands? Yeah, steer clear of any MLM company that incorporates in any of those three – let alone all three.
Finally, there’s this message on FBS’ website;
The service is not provided in the following countries: Japan, USA, Canada, UK, Myanmar, Brazil, Malaysia, Israel and the Islamic Republic of Iran.
Excluding those first four countries screams “we don’t want to be regulated!”. And why would a legitimate trading company intentionally exclude itself from the biggest trading markets on the planet?
Not withstanding the exclusions themselves appear to be nothing more than pseudo-compliance:
If you use a VPN service, please make sure you are connecting from the country that is authorized for FBS services.
And things certainly get complicated upon consideration that, despite the ban notice above, FBS do actually operate in Malaysia through a separate website:
No idea what the story is there but it’s just another dodgy aspect to the business. Oh and for those curious, Malaysia is omitted from the “banned countries” notice in the website footer of FBS’ Malaysian website.
All of this undermines the presented legitimacy of FBS. There’s too many red flags, such that even if everything was above-board on the trading side of things, it’s just too much to ignore.
Want to trade? Find a broker without the dodgy baggage.