Established in 2013, Sycamore Options is probably one of the most notorious binary options broker around. They are said to be based in Bucharest, Romania but we have no way of confirming this as no address is posted on their website. For us, this is one of the first red flags about this binary options broker.
To the best of our knowledge, Sycamore Options is not regulated by any financial regulatory agency. Take note that the Cyprus Securities Exchange Commission (CySEC) had also issued several warnings about Sycamore Options. There is also a rumour floating around on the internet that Sycamore Options and TraderXp are one and the same. Although there is no official confirmation on this, our first hint about them being the same comes from the observation that the websites for both Sycamore Options and TraderXP are practically the same theme.
Platform and Features
The Sycamore Options’ platform is like all the SpotOption white labelled powered platforms which is extremely easy to navigate and operate. Despite the fact that Sycamore Options has developed a notorious reputation among traders in the binary trading community, it doesn’t make the SpotOption powered platform any less reliable. In fact, given the strong technical foundation that the white labelled SpotOption powered platform is able to provide to any new binary broker start-up, Sycamore Options actually had the potential to become a leading binary broker had it chosen to do so.
Nevertheless to recap, the first generation SpotOption platform like the one adopted by Sycamore Options allow traders binaries in several different ways such as Up/Down, Option Builder, One Touch and 60 Seconds. They also have a decent coverage of the markets with slightly more than 70 different types of underlying assets.
The platform also comes with risk management tools such as roll forward, double up and sell now. These tools while by themselves may not be spectacular, actually represents an invaluable arsenal for binary traders to enhance their trading activities. In addition, the unique Option Builder trading mode gives traders more flexibility in customizing their trades. Together with the user friendly platform and the low minimum deposit requirement of $200, it is easy to see why so many people have been convinced by Sycamore Options to sign up with them.
While Sycamore Options is well known in the binary trading industry, it is not actually famous for its reliability. In fact, they have been accused of numerous unethical practices as well as outright fraud, so much so that the internet is filled with complaints and warnings about them. Given the circumstances, traders would be well advised to consider signing up with other binary brokers who are more reputable.
And like the majority of binary brokers, Sycamore Options rely on 128bit SSL encryption security system to help protect their web infrastructure as well as all credit card transactions which passes through their servers.
Complaints – 1/10
After looking through the internet, we found plenty of nasty complaints directed at Sycamore Options. Most of them were concerning the cancellation of withdrawal requests without giving any valid reasons to the traders. Others complaints detailed the aggressive sales pitch and constant harassment perpetuated by the market reps. However, what really disturbed us was the allegations of arbitrarily making deposits through the unauthorized charging of traders’ credit cards. This kind of behaviour while not only unethical actually borders on criminality.
Bonuses – 7 /10
The good thing about Sycamore Options is that while they do offer traders welcome bonuses, you have to actually request them before they get awarded to you. We say this is a good thing with Sycamore Options because their minimum trading volume is 20x the amount of your deposit inclusive of the bonus amount awarded. As for the bonus amount, we have no specific information as this vary with the type of trading account that you have as well as any individual arrangement that you have with your account manager.
Customer Care – 1/10
The chief complaints about Sycamore Options’ customer service are that the customer representatives act more like salesmen rather than support staff. When live chat is available, the service is almost nonexistent. The main form of communication is either through email or the telephone. As for the response time, it depends on whether your query regards the depositing of funds or withdrawal of funds. If it is the former, you can expect an almost immediate response. If the matter concerns the latter then it’s best that you make ready to camp by the computer or the phone as it is going to be a long wait. Service is available in English, French, Spanish, Arabic, Russian, Italian, Norwegian, German, Chinese and Turkish.
Price Manipulation – 1/10
Deposits & Withdrawals – 1/10
Depositing money with binary brokers is never a problem. The problems only arise when you try to withdraw from them. Acceptance of deposits is through the usual means such as credit cards, web wallets and wire transfers. According to Sycamore Options, withdrawals are done through the same ways. This is when all the problems start for most traders dealing with this broker.
Apart from having to meet the minimum trading volume requirement if you had accepted the bonus offered by them, you need to wait for 30 days after your last deposit before you are even allowed to make a withdrawal request. And if your withdrawal is approved, you have to wait for a further 10 days before you can expect the funds in your bank account. This puts you at a severe disadvantage as you only 20 days left to make a charge back claim through your credit card if the funds are not forthcoming.
Security – 10/10
With the security measures that Sycamore Options has put in place, you definitely do not have to worry about the safety of your funds from hackers. It is so safe that even you couldn’t get your money back if you wanted to.
From what we can gather, Sycamore Options is out to make a fast buck at the expense of unsuspecting traders. They have no interest in establishing a legitimate long term relationship with traders and lack professional ethics in the way they operate. In our opinion, traders are well advised to stay away from Sycamore Options.
Keep on track and find out about other unscrupulous binary options brokers.