Listed options vs CFDs in Australia

When it comes to investing, there are various options available to you. Two of the most popular investment choices are listed options and CFDs. But which one should you choose?

Listed options are a type of security that gives the holder the right, but not the obligation, to buy or sell an underlying asset at a set price on or before a specific date. CFDs, or Contracts for Difference, are derivatives that allow investors and traders to speculate on the price movements of assets without having to own them.

Pros and cons of listed options and CFDs

Both listed options and CFDs have their pros and cons. Let’s look at some of the key differences between them:


Listed options tend to be more expensive than CFDs, as there are costs associated with buying and selling them. These costs include brokerage fees and stamp duty. CFDs are typically less expensive to trade, as there are no broker fees or stamp duty payable.


Listed options are more liquid than CFDs, as they can be traded on an exchange. This means that they can be easily bought and sold at any time. CFDs are not as liquid as listed options, as they can only be traded over the counter. This means that they cannot be bought or sold at any time and may have restricted trading hours.


Listed options carry more risk than CFDs, as the holder has the potential to lose their entire investment if the underlying asset moves in the wrong direction. CFDs carry less risk than listed options, as the trader only loses money if the underlying asset’s price moves in the wrong direction.


Listed options are subject to capital gains tax, while CFDs are not.


Listed options are available on several exchanges, while CFDs are only available over the counter.

Risks associated with listed options and CFDs

These investment products have risks, which traders should be aware of before investing. With listed options, the most common risk is that the buyer will not exercise their right to buy or sell the asset. This can result in the option expiring worthless, which means the trader loses their investment.

CFDs also carry several risks, including counterparty risk and liquidity risk. 

Counterparty risk is the risk that the other party in the CFD trade will not meet their obligations, leading to a loss for the trader. Liquidity risk is the risk that there may not be enough buyers or sellers in the market to execute a CFD trade at the desired price.

Despite these risks, both listed options and CFDs can be profitable investments if traded correctly. Traders must do their research before investing in either of these products and understand the risks involved. Failure to do proper research could lead to substantial losses.

The risks of trading listed options and CFDs are numerous and should not be taken lightly. Before investing in either of these products, it is essential to understand the risks involved and trade cautiously. However, with a little bit of caution and research, these products can be profitable investments.

Final word

So, which investment option is right for you? It depends on your individual needs and preferences. If you’re looking for a low-cost way to trade assets, CFDs may be a better choice than listed options. If you’re interested in hedging or speculating on the price movements of an asset, listed options may be a better option. Traders must consider all of the pros and cons of each investment before deciding. Beginner traders are advised to use an experienced and reliable online broker from Saxo markets before starting their investment journey. Beginners can trade on a Saxo demo account and practise different trading strategies before investing real money.