Copyop Review (Our Opinion)
Launched in January 2015, copyop was the first social binary options trading network. It is operated by the same company who operate anyoption, the world’s largest binary options trading website. Copyop’s social trading platform allows you to watch and automatically copy other “binary option traders” who trade on either the copyop or anyoption platforms.
For the purpose of this review we only focus on copyop and its social trading & trade copying functionality and not on anyoption itself. Click here to jump straight to the review summary below.
In order to use the social trading platform you can either register direct with copyop or via the anyoption website. We chose the second option because there was a bonus deposit offer available and any money you deposit on anyoption, can be used on copyop as well. Please note though that we actually had to request for the bonus to be added since it didn’t automatically appear in my account. You also need to complete lots of trades for the bonus to be unlocked (similar to most other broker bonus offers).
Accounts can be opened in 3 different currencies (EUR, GBP and USD). Once you’ve registered you cannot change the base currency though. Deposits can be made with Visa, MasterCard and Amex cards, several debit cards or by a bank transfer. You can open an account without depositing money if you just like to see the platform features and traders you can copy. However, the anyoption/copyop sales team will be quick to contact you on the telephone number you provided to try and convince you to make a first deposit (they sounded very keen on the telephone to get you to deposit, which almost leaves me to assume they’re paid on commission).
Who are the traders you can copy?
Basically you can copy anyone who trades on copyop or anyoption, and anyone can also copy you, even if you only copy others. The only restriction is that any trader can have a maximum of 100 copiers. Obviously this may become an issue when the service becomes more popular, but we only saw 1 trader like that so far. Alternatively you can also “watch” a trader, which means their trading actions are displayed in your “social feed” real-time.
While many other trade copier services focus on Forex only, the binary option traders on copyop can trade on forex pairs, indices, commodities and a selection of US, European and Asian stocks.
Any binary option traders who get copied by others also get rewarded. They receive copyop coins which can be converted to real money. For each copied trade by another trader they get 2 coins and each followed trade 1 coin. 60 coins is worth €10, 250 coins worth €50 and 600 coins worth €150. The payment is independent of the trade’s success, so traders are not specifically rewarded more for better results (though obviously they get more copiers if they trade better and vice versa).
Letting anyone copy anyone is obviously very “social” and open, though also means that there’s no pre-selection and vetting of traders, something which is offered by some other social trading networks and trade copying services. However it is worth noting that every binary option trader on their platform trades with “real” money (the value of which is displayed for their last trades). I.e. you won’t be copying people who trade with demo accounts, and everyone you copy risks their own money as well (which is obviously a positive factor).
In terms of trader performance it’s worth explaining first how much you make when you automatically copy someone. Copyop pays you 60% profit if the option you copied was successful and returns 15% refund if it lost (their FAQs actually mention a 10% refund but we tried and it’s actually 5% more). These levels are a little bit less than your potential returns when you trade yourself, in which case copyop offers you a 60%-81% payout when the option expires in-the-money, and a 5%-25% return if the option expires out-of-the-money.
So what this means is that to make a profit you need to copy someone with a success rate (called “hit %” on copyop) of more than 58.62%. For those of you interested in the maths, the way to calculate this % value is by working out the value of X in the following formula:
X * 16 + (1 – X) * 1.5 = 10 –>
14.5 X = 8.5 –>X = 8.5/14.5 –>0.5862 or 58.62%
I.e. if you invest $10 per trade and 58.62% copied trades are successful (receiving $16) and 41.38% unsuccessful (receiving $1.5), then you’ll break-even over time.
Arguably your returns would be slightly better if instead of “automatically” copying a trader, you would “watch” them and manually copy their trades when you see them in your copyop social feed or when you get a mobile alert on their activity. However this would mean you have to be online all day and highly likely you will miss some of their trades.
Because copyop is still a very new service and we’ve only invested over a short period of time it’s not possible to make a final judgement on the overall performance of the traders as part of the current review (so far break-even). My initial impression is that I don’t find many traders who’ve been on the service from before 2014, but again, this may be because it’s still new. It’s also our first experience with binary option trading and hence we’re even more cautious than otherwise when trying a new service.
Just like with any of our other social trading and trade copier platform reviews we will keep this review updated over time. Particularly we’re interested in the longevity of the traders on the platform and potential for sustained results.
Reviewing and Selecting the Traders to Copy
Here we discuss and review the features copyop offers to look for top traders to copy and evaluate their past performance. As mentioned above, you can actually copy anyone who trades binary options on copyop or anyoption. However you won’t see all available traders because there’s no full list or search functionality. You can only discover other traders either via the “explore feed” or “hot list” (see image):
- The “explore feed” is a real-time feed with the most interesting and popular trading actions from around their trading network.
- The “hot list” displays 3 tables with the “10 best traders” in terms of total monetary gains, “best trades” in value and “best copiers” in terms of gain over 12 hour, 1 week, 1 month and 3 months timeframes.
Hence Copyop’s functionality to look for other traders to copy is very basic. There’s no real search capability and a severe limitation of the “hot lists” is that they’re based on total monetary gains and not on overall hit %. If you want to copy other traders your main decision factor is normally hit %. However someone who has 1 winning trade of $10,000 and 9 losing ones of -$100 may actually make the hot list. However for copying purposes they may not be very useful since when you copy them, all your copied trades will be executed at the same value. Increasing the size of the ‘hot lists’ from 10 to 50 or more traders would also be useful, because it would give you a larger pool of traders to consider and evaluate.
Once you see a trader you may like in the “hot list” or “explore feed”, you can click on them for more details. This will show (see both images):
- trader nickname, country of residence, joining date and copyop risk profile
- number of people copying and watching them
- overall hit %, i.e. the number of profitable investments out of all investments the trader made themselves (i.e. not copied from others)
- best asset traded to date (in terms of total profit made)
- best winning streak
- average number of trades per day
- last 3 trades made (open or closed)
- hit % for the past 1-30, 31-60, 61-90 and 91-120 trades
- asset breakdown over last 120 trades
It’s clear that only a small subset of the trader’s trading history is shared by copyop. I.e. you can only see the last 3 trades and not all historical and current open trades, something which is shared by some other social trading networks. The hit % breakdown over the past 120 trades is useful since it at least gives some impression of the performance over time of the trader. However overall we would like to see more historical information to allow for more detailed trader evaluation.
So overall, looking for traders to copy is not easy since you may need to follow the “explore feed” for a while to discover other traders (i.e. outside the limited hot lists). However when you “watch” them you can easily find them back in the future.
Copyop risk and money management features
In terms of risk management, a clear general benefit of binary options trading is that you exactly know how much you’ll lose on each trade (i.e. the amount you invest in the option + any potential refund if the option expires out-of-the-money). With normal Forex trading your risks are normally unlimited, or at least up to your stop levels.
In addition, when you copy other traders with copyop it’s very easy to manage your risk and you can know in advance the maximum you might lose. When you start to copy a trader you are asked (see image):
- How many trades you want to copy? All or a limited number (e.g. 5 or 10)
- Amount per trade. Which is either 10, 25, 50 or 100 in your base currency.
- Assets to copy. Which is either all or you can limit and for example only copy specific ones (e.g. EUR/USD or gold).
So if you limit the trades you copy you can easily work out the maximum loss you can endure if the trader you copy would get all trades wrong. You’ll also notice that copyop both has a minimum and maximum limit on the amount you can invest per copied trade. The maximum limit does not apply when you trade yourself, though the minimum limit is actually more on your own trades (25 instead of 10 in your base currency).
Once you’ve started copying a trader you can at any stage stop copying them. You can also follow and review your performance within your copyop account interface by clicking on ‘My Options’. This displays the “Open Options” and “Settled Options”. However there’s no easy way to view the performance per trader you copy. In case you copy more than one, you’d need to look at each individual settled option and work the performance per trader out yourself.
While the copyop money and risk management features are easy and straight forward, one important limitation you need to consider when copying other traders is the fixed amount per trade. I.e. every trade you copy from one trader will be executed at the same amount (10, 25, 50 or 100), while this trader may actually risk more or less on some trades depending on their confidence. I.e. your trades are not copied proportionally in comparison with the trader you copy.
While some traders always use the same amount themselves, the majority don’t, meaning your performance results would not be the same if you just copy them. We’ve noticed some of the top traders risking $2,000 on one trade and $200 on the next. Needless to say that their confidence on winning is much higher on the first trade than on the second (this is why you may see traders with large financial gains but hit ratios below 50%). Hence better results would highly likely be achieved by manually watching the top traders in your feed and either proportionally copying their trades or only taking the ones on which they risk the most money. However this requires you to watch your copyop feed for many hours, something which is obviously not possible for everyone.
Costs and fees
Opening an account with copyop (or anyoption) is totally free and there are no other fees or costs to pay. You can make one free withdrawal per month as well.
In addition, unlike with the Forex social trading networks, you don’t have to worry about slippage. Fyi, slippage is the difference in price between what the trader you copied got and what you got. While slippage can be positive or negative, due to the nature of trade copying it’s normally negative and will therefore impact your overall results. Because you get exactly the same option as the trader you copy with copyop, slippage is therefore not an issue.
However as we mentioned before, when you use the copy service you receive slightly smaller returns than if you would make the same trades yourself. Hence this should be considered as a cost for using the service. Part of this difference is used by copyop to reward the traders you copy, and part no doubt for managing the service and generating additional revenues.
You can contact copyop via email or contact form only. There’s no contact telephone number. While basic, the FAQs on the website are clear. However because copyop is part of the same company as anyoption (and we actually registered via anyoption) we should include their support options and experience as part of this review too.
Anyoption can be contacted via email, contact form, online chat, call back and telephone (local numbers provided for various countries). As mentioned above, we received quickly a call from their sales team after registering.
In terms of support experience, I did use the online contact form (chat was unavailable at that time) to ask why my deposit bonus was not visible yet. It took 4 days before I received a reply (!), i.e. not the most speedy response times.
The anyoption website does however provide a wide selection of guides, tutorials, eBooks, articles and educational videos on binary options trading. Useful if you’re new to binary option trading.
Copyop allows you to connect your Facebook account, which would mean your trades are shared with your friends and you can view their copyop activity too. Personally I wouldn’t want my friends to know my trading activity but maybe some people may find this useful (?).
There are no other social capabilities though, and there’s no way to communicate with the other traders or to rate them.
There’s no demo offered by copyop, though you can always register for a free anyoption or copyop account if you want to have a look at the full social trading interface. This also allows you to look at the social feed and hot list with the traders you can watch and potentially copy (if you fund your account with real money). As I mentioned above though, you can expect a callback from their sales team on the number you enter when registering for the account
Both ZuluTrade and Porter Finance currently offer a similar service as copyop allowing investors to copy other binary options traders. ZuluTrade is the largest Forex social trading network and added binary options in 2015, while Porter Finance is a binary options broker who also offer social trading, allowing you to copy the trades of their best binary option traders).
Copyop review Pros:
- Every trader you copy risks their own money
- Easy intuitive interface
- Risk can be clearly limited/managed
- No slippage (because type of service)
- Open – i.e. you can copy anyone
Copyop review Cons:
- Still fairly new service with some interface glitches
- Trader search/discovery capability very limited
- Full trade history is not shared
- No proportional trade copying (fixed amount per trade only)
- No fully functioning demo account
- Trader rewards not linked to their performance
- Very few traders with hit % > 58.62%
In summary, where binary options trading is (in my opinion) a simplistic form of “real trading” (i.e. you only have 1 decision to make buy/sell), copyop also trims down social trading to a simplistic level. It’s very much catering for investors with no trading experience and the interface is very intuitive, more resembling a game than an investor platform. The performance stats provided on the traders you can copy is very limited, with only partial trade history available. On the other hand, all traders on copyop’s platform risk their own money and some seem to be making significant profits over a longer time horizon. However, a limitation is the fact that trades cannot be copied proportionally, means that your results don’t necessarily match those of the traders you copy. Better results may be achieved by manually watching and copying their best performing traders (though that would be a time consuming exercise).
As always, we’ll keep this review updated when new features are introduced or if our view changes. Your own comments are always welcome below too.
Last updated: January 29, 2016
This review is written based on our experience with a real money copyop/anyoption account. The images included are from our live account. Please also note that trading in Binary Options carries a high level of risk and can result in the loss of your investment. As such, Binary Option trading may not be appropriate for you. You should never invest money that you cannot afford to lose. Before deciding to trade, you should carefully consider your investment objectives, risk appetite and level of experience.