Is uBanker a scam?

Today, we’re going to take a close look at uBanker, a forex broker that’s based out of Vanuatu. We’ll be taking a deep dive into their business practices and how the uBanker advisors treat clients, looking at them from every angle to determine whether their business is a scam or not. 

What is uBanker? Who is uBanker? 

uBanker is an online trading platform that accepts payments via bank transfer or major credit card. They offer brokerage services in multiple areas such as stocks, bonds, precious metals, commodities, crypto currency, and the forex exchange.

What does uBanker claim they do well?

uBanker claims that their service is designed specifically for beginners, with a simple trading app that’s available for Windows, Apple, or Android. With an account, you also receive a personal investment advisor whose job it is to help you navigate the challenging world of investments.

One reason uBanker is so popular is that it serves as a hub for managing just about all of your investments. Within a single investment account, you can buy and sell multiple types of assets. This makes uBanker an attractive choice for people who want to split their portfolio between aggressive, high-growth investments and safe, long-term investments.

Licensed in Vanuatu

One thing that should trouble any savvy investor is that uBanker is registered in Vanuatu. Vanuatu, along with Estonia and Belize, is known as a safe haven for financial scammers and unregulated companies. 

Essentially, a broker that is  “licensed” in Vanuatu is offering no guarantee that they’re qualified to manage your investments.

This isn’t to say that there are no legitimate companies at all in the entire country of Vanuatu, but uBanker also goes to some lengths to conceal their country of operation. Their website only mentions their own licensing in passing and goes to great lengths to tout the fact that their payment processor, Rehoboth LTD, is located in Cyprus.

But while it’s true that Rehoboth LTD has an office in Cyprus, the company is not regulated or licensed there. Their headquarters and licensing are in Vanuatu, once again putting investors in the uncomfortable position of dealing with a company that’s located in one of the more scammer-friendly countries.

Does this mean that uBanker is a scam? In and of itself, no. But it’s a big red flag. And it does leave us with some serious concerns. For example, unlike companies that are regulated in Europe or the US, brokers in Vanuatu are not required to ensure your investments. If something happens to your money, it’s just gone.

Photo by Matt Botsford on Unsplash

Not Available in the USA

One surefire way to tell if you’re the target of a uBanker scam is if you live in the United States. While uBanker offers financial services to most world nations and territories, including the US Virgin Islands, they do not offer services to the 50 US states, Guam, or Puerto Rico.

If you live in one of these areas, the real, legitimate uBanker will not do business with you. You’re dealing with a scammer. These types of scammers will set up a fake website, accept your payments, then disappear when their victims come looking for their money.

Non-US investors should also be careful of these scams. Deal with uBanker – or any broker – only through their official website or app.

Non-Standard Trading Platform

uBanker does not use a standard trading platform. Instead, it utilizes a simplified app called Web Profit. This app is developed with uBanker’s philosophy of being as beginner-friendly as possible. You can trade every asset type that uBanker handles from a handheld app, without a lot of clutter on the screen.

This may be an issue for experienced traders, who will be used to more advanced trading systems like MetaTrader 5. While Web Profit is a useful app for beginners, serious traders will prefer something with a little more meat on its bones. Advanced features like charting, analytics, and AI advisor support will be sorely missed if you’re already used to them.

So what does this have to do with uBanker being a scam? It’s tangentially related. It tells us that they’re marketing their services towards dabblers, and not towards serious investors. This means they need to turn a short-term profit, rather than look out for the long-term interests of customers who know what they’re doing.

Spreads, Fees, and Leverage

In terms of spreads and fees, uBanker is most certainly not a scam. They’re more transparent than most brokers on the market, although they do charge a variable spread, so you’ll need to check the spread on each transaction before you decide whether or not to pull the trigger.

That said, spreads are unusually high. The “standard” spread is 3 pips, or 50 percent more than most brokers on the market. uBanker justifies this because of their highly personalized customer service, which we’ll talk about more in a minute.

In terms of fees, uBanker charges none. There are no withdrawal fees, no bank transfer fees, and no per-transaction fees other than the variable spread.

The minimum deposit to open a uBanker account is $200/€200. Once you’ve opened an account, not only will you be able to invest your own money in a variety of assets, you’ll also have access to leverage to grow your investment further. uBanker advertises forex leverage as high as 200:1, so individual investors should beware. It’s very easy to end up not only losing your own money with this kind of investment, but also getting deep in debt because of investment losses.

Pushy Brokers

One thing we’ve seen from several uBanker reviewers is that their “personal service” is a thinly-disguised way of saying that their brokers will be calling you on the phone on a daily basis. Now, if you were investing millions of dollars, maybe this kind of attention would be warranted. But for a personal investor, it comes off as more of a sales pitch.

The problem with this is that uBanker earns money on trades, not on the growth in your investment itself. If you let your money sit idle for a month, waiting for a perfect trade, uBanker makes nothing. On the other hand, if you make ten trades that month, even if you make no money – or end up at a loss – uBanker still earns a cool three pips per trade.

Once again, this in and of itself doesn’t mean that uBanker is a scam. But it speaks volumes about their priorities. No reputable financial advisor or broker would call its investors multiple times a week to offer trades that aren’t in their best interest. On the other hand, that’s exactly the sort of thing a scammer would do.

Is uBanker a Scam? Should I Trade With uBanker?

Here’s what it comes down to with uBanker and other similar, unregulated brokers: you’re dealing with businesses who exist in a legal grey area. On the one hand, they’re subject to the laws of a country (Vanuatu), they pay taxes, and they don’t appear to be committing outright fraud. So far so good.

On the other hand, they’re not subject to the same regulations as a financial company that’s regulated in the European Union or the US. There are no limitations on the leverage they can offer to first-time investors, and they’re not required to insure your investments for any amount of money.

So, is uBanker a scam? Not technically. At least, they’re offering what they claim to be offering, and they’re not charging any extra hidden fees. That said, you’ll need to tune out their advisors and make smart trades if you want to actually earn anything on your investment.

Should you trade with uBanker? We wouldn’t recommend it. To begin with, their spreads are higher than other brokers, and the only “service” they offer comes in the form of constant unsolicited advice. For another thing, their trading software doesn’t offer a lot of features. That’s a huge disadvantage over other brokers since you’ll need every edge you can get if you want to earn a profit in the forex market.

What if I’ve Been Scammed?

Depending on your circumstances, you may be able to get some of your money back from uBanker via a credit card or bank chargeback. However, this process can be challenging and time-consuming. And your odds of success will depend on exactly how you lost your investment, to begin with.

MoneyBackHero’s experts have helped many people like you recover their funds from scam artists and shady unregulated brokers. Contact us today for a free consultation. We only make money if you get a recovery, so you can rest assured that we are in your corner, 100 percent.

Choosing a broker

Choosing a forex broker is a bit like choosing a hairstylist blindfolded, without being able to view any of their previous work. Not only is it difficult to determine a broker’s track record, but it’s also very hard to tell if they’re even going to provide you any specific value if you choose them as your trading platform.

To make matters worse, many so-called “brokers” are just thinly-disguised scammers, offering the illusion of a quick profit. All they are doing is tricking the honest investors out of his/her money. With all of these sharks in the water, how do you know where and when it’s safe to swim in the forex waters?

Please leave a comment below with the broker you are considering. Our professional agents will notify you if the trading platform is reliable.