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In the latest update of its developer guidelines, Apple has said it will no longer accept apps for its app store that facilitate binary options trading. It represents another body blow to the market for binary options trading, which has already been feeling the pinch from financial regulators.

Apple’s new developer guidelines state that it will no longer be accepting such apps, although it is not currently clear what will happen to those binary options apps that already exist on the store. Not only do a number of leading brokers currently offer trading apps that can allow users to trade binary options, but there are many apps that support the activities of traders. Take for example platforms that generate trading signals, or books that explain how to trade binary options.

Ultimately, Apple is the final arbiter of what goes and what stays. Among the leading brokers with binary options apps currently on the store are eToro and ETX Capital, along with many smaller onshore and offshore brokers.

Mobile trading has been growing rapidly since it was first introduced at the start of this decade. It will be interesting to see how strictly Apple will enforce these new rules, and how brokers which offer binary options manage to continue to offer them via their mobile apps. There is also a big question over whether Google will follow suit, and ban binary options from its store.

Apple is likely responding to significant regulatory pressure. There seems to be a disproportionate number of scams affecting the binary options market. In addition, Apple itself has been taking some of the flak for providing binary options trading avenues via its own infrastructure.

Apple advised that firms which want to continue to be able to offer binary options trading will need to look at web-based platforms. It will create a significant headache for developers working for brokers that want to continue to offer binary options trading.

What is your take on Apple’s new ban?  Are they being over-protective, or are there too many dubious options trading scams out there? Discuss this on our forums.

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Please note this article does not constitute investment advice. Investors are encouraged to do their own research beforehand or consult a professional advisor.

Stuart Fieldhouse

Stuart Fieldhouse

Stuart Fieldhouse has spent 25 years in journalism and marketing, including as a wealth management editor for the Financial Times group, covering capital markets and international private banking, and as an investment banking correspondent for Euromoney in Hong Kong. He was the founder editor of The Hedge Fund Journal.

Stuart has worked at CMC Markets, supporting the re-launch of its global financial spread betting and CFD trading platforms. He is also the author of two books on trading, published by Financial Times Pearson. Based in The Armchair Trader’s London office, Stuart continues to advise fund managers, private banks, family offices and other financial institutions.

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