Stern Options is a very peculiar binary option operator, we don’t exactly know how to properly appraise for the time being. The main reason is that the operation is so new, it has barely shown us and the community anything. Launched in the summer of 2016, the operation is a toddler compared to some of the more established industry participants. Its minimums on deposits and trades aren’t particularly attractive either, which is quite surprising for a new broker looking to gain a foothold on the market.
To make things even more complicated, for the time being, Stern Options are unregulated and without a license. While usually we preach a zero-tolerance policy toward unregulated operators, in this case, we cannot firmly stick to those guns. The operation is indeed so new, that it might now be in the process of obtaining a license somewhere. Their About Us section isn’t of much use though. It is full of generalizations and pretentious slang, extolling the virtues of the team behind the operation and of the platform. Nothing specific is shared in any way though. The Stern Options site also says that the operation already has thousands upon thousands of institutional and retail investors, and that their trading platform is a marvel of modern technology. Just to make it clear: we’re talking about the SpotOption platform here. There is no demo account offered currently. When we asked them about it, they said that “a demo account is not a necessary feature of the Stern service as our Trading Academy is comprehensive enough.”
The company behind the operation is apparently BP1 LP and it’s based in Glasgow, Scotland. According to other sources though, only their support center is located there. The actual operation is based in the Commonwealth of Dominica, and the company pulling the strings in the background is GUM Ltd.
The community-buzz regarding this broker is extremely difficult to assess, because at this stage, it’s quite non-existent. Although nowhere is this specifically stated, we were able to find out that they accept traders mainly from Austria, Ireland, Norway, Singapore, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Denmark, Finland, Malaysia, New Zealand and Germany.
Stern Options Platform
As said above, the Stern Options platform is the popular SpotOption one. While there’s nothing truly outstanding about it – given the fact that the overwhelming majority of the binary options industry uses it – the latest version of the SpotOption platform is indeed a very solid and capable piece of binary option engineering. In this instance, the trading tools it brings to the table aren’t particularly impressive though. There is a sort of market-sentiment indicator below each trade, to give traders an idea which way the majority of their peers are leaning. This is hardly something to trade by over the long run though.
Trading off the charts isn’t available at the site and there is no charting package or streaming news feed. One-click trading on the other hand is available and so are email and mobile alerts. As said at the beginning of this Stern Options review, the operator doesn’t seem keen on communicating many details regarding anything at its site. Yes, this includes the platform as well. While we all have a pretty good understanding of what a SpotOption platform is capable, we don’t gain any insights into customization and special features. It is probably safe to assume that there aren’t any such features. Double-up, early Sell and Rollover options are available for most of the option-types featured.
Stern Options Trade Types
As said above, the Spot Option platform performs well speed and stability-wise. It offers traders a great variety of option types as well. Classic Put/Call binary options are available, with expiry times from 16 to 20 minutes. There’s pairs trading as well, with similar expiry times. We have long term options next, the expiry times of which can cover more than a month. 60 second options are the fastest financial instruments supported by Stern Options. In this category, we have options with expiry times of 90,120, 180 and 300 seconds, too. The selection is rounded out by One Touch Options (of which sometimes there’s a shortage) and Ladder Options. In addition to all the above, there’s Limit Trading available too, together with Spot Follow and FX/CFDs. The Spot Follow feature is essentially about copy-trading and as such, it is always a welcome addition.
Stern Options Underlying Assets
The underlying asset selection is great at Stern Options. All the major currency pairs, stocks, indices and commodities are covered. The currency selection doesn’t stop at the most popular pairs either. More exotic pairs, like the USD/ZAR and the USD/TRY are also covered. Altogether, there are currently 12 currency pairs covered. The stocks are numerous too, but they don’t go overboard in this respect. There are no fewer than 7 commodities though, including sugar, wheat and coffee. The indices selection covers some 19 indices, from the most popular, to outliers like the Saudi TADAWUL and the Turkish ISE-30.
One has to remember that despite not being regulated (as mentioned at the beginning of this Stern Options review), Stern Options works according to a single market-maker model. That means that the broker is the one who provides all the pricing on the above said assets.
Stern Options Returns
On most option-types, Stern Options offer returns in the 70-85% range, which is quite industry-standard. For ladder options, the returns can be as high as 500%.
The Stern Options Educational Center
Stern Options have their own education center, which includes a Trading Academy. This Academy delivers a bevy of information in various formats. They have a video library, as well as e-Courses on advanced binary option trading concepts as well as strategies. The platform is covered by a number of tutorials too, and there are no fewer than three eBooks on offer, covering the platform, as well as binary options. An Economic Calendar is available too. It can indeed be a superb tool for fundamental analysis. The problem with the whole package is that it’s only available to those who have an account with the operator and are signed in. Free accounts can always be opened though, with minimum hassle. Account Managers are made available as well, to discuss the various concepts covered by the Trading Academy and to actually help traders with their trades.
A Demo Tour is also available for beginners. This is essentially a ~2-minute long YouTube video, which covers some general issues tied to binary options and the Stern Options platform.
The Stern Options Calculator
Interestingly, the Stern Option Calculator isn’t included in the Education section of the site, but it is available nonetheless and it’s quite possibly the handiest trading tool of the Stern suite. The Calculator is all about technical analysis. To give traders a deeper understanding of why an asset-price evolves the way it does (and thus to endow them with better foresight) the Calculator uses three technical indicators. The Bollinger Bands, the RSI (Relative Strength Index) and the Moving Average are indeed the most popular technical analysis tools. The site also offers detailed explanations regarding the way these three indicators work.
Stern Options Minimums
As stated in the opening of this Stern Options review, the broker doesn’t exactly dazzle minimums-wise. The minimum requirement on deposits is an industry-standard $250, while the minimums on single trades range from $5 to $25, depending on the type of option one chooses.
Stern Options Banking
Apparently, Stern Options only accept deposits made via Credit Cards and Wire Transfers. The accepted credit cards are VISA, Delta, Mastercard, Diners, Solo, Visa Electron and Maestro. For wire transfers, traders will actually have to contact Stern Options, for instructions on how to make the transfer and to what account.
Fund withdrawals are subject the site’s KYC policies, which means that traders will be required to provide a slew of documents. That means government-issued ID, utility bills, account numbers, credit card copies, as well as voice-signature. Processing fees amounting to $15 on Wire Withdrawals and 3.5% on Credit Card Withdrawals shall also be applied.
Stern Options Support
The Stern Options support is eager, competent and is provided in multiple languages. The support staff can be reached through a variety of department-specific email addresses, like email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org. There are a number of local telephone numbers available too. +44 (131) 608-0954 for Scotland, +44 (203) 769-7123 for the UK, where there’s a toll-free number available as well: +44 (800) 086-9172. Toll-free support is available in Germany too (+49 (800) 589-2703) while additional phone numbers can be called from Saudi Arabia (+966 (11) 510-8734), Switzerland (+41 (43) 508-6306), Austria (+43 (720) 775-114) and Australia (+61 (87) 070-6131).
The Stern Options site is currently available in English and German.
Stern Options Review Conclusion
As said before, Stern Options is just too young to have generated a proper reaction from the trading community. What is certain though is that we’re looking at an operation featuring a good trading platform, some decent and simple trading tools, and some rather lackluster minimums. Their withdrawal requirements. Their KYC policy and service is described as second to none and not sloppy because it combines an email service and an online upload service. They have certainly invested great deal into their services.
Feedback from Stern Options traders will be highly appreciated! Please feel free to leave a comment below.
Stern Options Specs
|Broker name||Stern Options|
|Jurisdiction||Commonwealth of Dominica|
|Supportemail@example.com, email form, toll free phone.|
|Trader Demographics||Stern Options are only interested in serious investors, not players.|
|App compatibility||Android, Windows, Mac, Linux|
|Minimum required deposit||$250|
|Minimum trade amount||$5-$25|
|Customer service||Eager to assist, available 24/7.|
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