Some Characteristics of Reliable Trading Broker

Best Binary Options Brokers 2020:
  • Binarium
    Binarium

    1st Place! Best Binary Broker 2020!
    Best Choice for Beginners — Free Education + Free Demo Acc!
    Sign-up and Get Big Bonus:

  • Binomo
    Binomo

    2nd place! Good choice!

Contents

Some Characteristics of Reliable Trading Broker: Platforms and Payout of Binary Options – Binoption

It is possible to trade binary options through online only and for this every trader should know the Characteristics of Reliable Trading Broker .

As there is a lot of demand for binary option software and due to the competition in this field, these platforms are offering 100% reliable and glitch free automatic services.

These are some of the important features that every trader looks up before choosing a binary option broker.

Plus even if there will be any minor glitches, the trading platforms will try their best to resolve it with 27 hours.

The services offered are very real-time as things are happening on a live market where each second matters a lot.

The minute a trader decides to book a trade, the platform should be ready to offer all necessary services.

If this is not offered as per requirement, then traders will choose to move to different platforms that offer fast and best services.

As there is continuous popularity in binary option trading, the platforms are bound to offer latest sophisticated services to its customer.

The level of services offered will have to be flawless and quick.

In any chance, we understand there are still many traders out there who are keen to know how to choose best brokers from the list that is available in the market.

Choose returns:

The most important and first factor that should be kept in mind before deciding a broker is if they agree to offer at least 70% returns on the investment.

Best Binary Options Brokers 2020:
  • Binarium
    Binarium

    1st Place! Best Binary Broker 2020!
    Best Choice for Beginners — Free Education + Free Demo Acc!
    Sign-up and Get Big Bonus:

  • Binomo
    Binomo

    2nd place! Good choice!

If the payout is determined in advance, the trader will be more confident and happy to make any investment into the platform for any trading activities.

This will help each trader to know how much they should earn or lose to get desired payout.

Also it is important to understand the bigger the payout is, it is the better.

However, as thinks get better and earning go up, you can capitalize more and more and increase the rate of return on investment.

There are certain types of options that will still render payouts as additional features even if the option is expired to have out-of-the-money.

There are some brokers who offer around 15% refund on losses.

This will decrease the whole loss and will also increase the morale of traders.

This feature is extremely beneficial if you lose a lot of trades continuously.

Binary options can be traded on a wide variety of assets.

Those traders who are looking for great return can customize their trades as per their wants.

The more complex and accurate your predictions are the chance of earning high returns is great.

Also for this while choosing platforms, you should check if customized trades or structured trading style is accepted by the platform.

Also while choosing platforms look up for news feed services, the more updated you are on the market conditions, the higher will be the accuracy of your predictions.

As a binary option trader you should be aware of latest economic developments which will influence the price movements of the assets you are looking to trade.

Quality of support:

When choosing a binary option broker, the quality of support that it offers plays an important role.

Its true there are a lot of safe and secure binary options trading platform but they are not 100% full proof.

Glitches, errors and malfunctioning of the systems can be commonly seen.

For all these there should be sufficient support rendered around the clock for any quick resolution.
While choosing trading platform, security is another main factor.

There should be privacy of any personal information shared plus there should be high level confidentiality.

Its broker’s obligation to make sure that there is lot of privacy of their client’s information.

All have threats from cyber-attacks;

Though brokers will try their best to avoid it, there is no guarantee that trading platforms are 100% safe.

Trader should be open to take up any risk associated from such factors.

However, what traders can do in these instances is, they can stay away from those brokers who have the history of very poor data management.

In order to get all the facilities and to make use of the same to the utmost, it is important that the information provided to brokers is original with sufficient supporting documents.

If you try to open an account with fake information, then in case of any account related issues, if they recognize you have fake identity, no support will be rendered from the platform.

The severities of fake account can even extent to getting your account banned in case of any legitimacy checks.

The same is the case when the broker is not genuine, the money you invested will be lost if it is not an approved and regulated brokers.

Apart from these passing false data and using inappropriate measures to make money will lead to losing the investment in itself.

Just like Forex, there are basically two types of binary option trading platforms- Propriety platforms and white-label platforms.

Characteristics Of Reliable Binary Options Broker

Tcsna Financial Advisors > Investments > Characteristics Of Reliable Binary Options Broker

A lot of people are always out on the lookout to find a good investment mentor or coach. This explains why they turn to binary options brokers because of their expertise in trading. This type of trading can be done through several methods such as forex, commodities, indices, and stocks. However, before you guarantee success, a trader ought to choose his or her options wisely. Moreover, you need to gain adequate experience.

It is a fact that investment prospects are great when participating in binary options trading. However, sometimes traders can go at a loss. For instance, trading with stocks. Even the sharpest minds fail to understand what needs to be done. Inadequate analysis and insufficient knowledge of market and stocks can result in failure.

Fortunately, with the help of binary options broker, you can achieve success in this field. You need a broker that is reliable and trustworthy. Therefore, you must choose one wisely after thoughtful and careful consideration.

You need brokers that are knowledgeable and understand the different strategies, which can give you an edge in the market. You are advised to seek advice from the experienced traders before you choose a broker and entrust him or her with your money. There are also online brokerages if getting the right broker is a big challenge.

Important features of binary options broker

Knowledge

You should always work with a broker that has excellent knowledge and is competent. This is important as it helps you to generate good returns with the binary options.

Handles your trades

Since high returns are guaranteed with successful trades, you need a good broker that you can collaborate with to handle your binary options.

Market knowledge

If you lack adequate knowledge about the market and poor analysis of the stocks, you a re bound to fail. Fortunately a binary options can come to your rescue. Ensure you choose one that is reliable and trustworthy. The broker you choose should be knowledgeable about different strategies that you can use. You should seek advice from experienced brokers.

Trustworthy

Remember that the broker handles all your money and investment. Thus, you need someone that is reliable, trustworthy and reputable. Thus, you need to find out this from the professional traders before you make a decision. The broker must take care of your money.

Best Brokers for Day Trading

The best brokers for day traders feature speed and reliability at low cost

Investopedia is committed to rigorous editorial standards to provide our readers with the best advice and recommendations. We may receive compensation when you click on links to products we reviewed. Learn more about our methodology and review process.

We recognize that we all are living through a particularly volatile time as we deal with this global crisis, and financial markets have also seen unprecedented change, impacting all investors. Our mission has always been to help people make the most informed decisions about how, when and where to invest. Given recent market volatility, and the changes in the online brokerage industry, we are more committed than ever to providing our readers with unbiased and expert reviews of the top investing platforms for investors of all levels, for every kind of market

When choosing an online broker, day traders place a premium on speed, reliability, and low cost. Features designed to appeal to long-term, infrequent traders are unnecessary for day traders, who generally start a trading day with no positions in their portfolios, make a lot of transactions, and end the day having closed all of those trades.

Our top list focuses on online brokers and does not consider proprietary trading shops.

Best Online Brokers for Day Trading in April 2020:

  • Interactive Brokers: Best Online Broker for Day Trading
  • Interactive Brokers: Best Broker for Advanced Day Traders
  • Interactive Brokers: Best Charting Platform for Day Traders
  • Fidelity: Best Low-Cost Day Trading Platform

Best Broker for Day Trading, Best for Advanced Day Traders, and Best Charting Platform for Day Traders: Interactive Brokers

  • Account Minimum: $0
  • Fees: Maximum $0.005 per share for Pro platform or 1% of trade value, $0 for IBKR Lite

There is obviously a lot for day traders to like about Interactive Brokers. Interactive Brokers allows day traders to invest in a wide array of instruments on a global scale with access to 125 markets in 31 countries. The broker also offers you the widest array of order types and a wealth of analysis tools to find your next trading opportunity.

The only real weakness is the fact that Interactive Brokers went from one of the lowest cost brokers for day traders to one of the few that still charges fees (albeit still very low) while the rest of the industry has moved to zero. This fact has allowed Fidelity to prevent Interactive Brokers from sweeping the day trading portion of our review. Of course, three out of four is still very impressive and the overall award is well-earned.

Interactive Brokers’ primary platform for day traders, the Traders Workstation (TWS) platform, is excellent across the board. There are a few platforms that can beat it in a particular type of trading, such as options trading, but none offer the overall quality of trading experience across the same number of markets and instruments. TWS is the most customizable platform we reviewed, which comes as a trade-off in terms of a learning curve you have to climb before you can use the software to its full potential.

Interactive Brokers tied with TD Ameritrade in terms of the range and flexibility of the charting tools. These platforms allow you to trade directly from a chart and they allow you to customize your charting views to almost any conceivable specification. Interactive Brokers took this category for day trading based on its overall strength and the fact that there are so many more charts because the overall asset pool is much larger.

Advanced day traders will find that Interactive Brokers’ TWS gets better as you need more from it. Backtesting and all the other tools required to implement multi-layered trades with contingent orders are present and all among the best available. Moreover, TWS shines when it comes to controlling your entry and exit, which is critical to trading success in less liquid markets or assets. In addition to 60 supported order types, Interactive Brokers has third-party algorithms that can further fine tune order selection. The algorithms give you control over how a position is entered or exited so that you can minimize slippage or maximize speed. The algorithms take different approaches ranging from blasting orders to exchanges simultaneously to subtly working them into market close or breaking up a position through an iceberg order.

On top of the rich features, wide range of assets, and extensive order types, Interactive Brokers also offers the lowest margin interest rates of all the brokers we reviewed. While this may not matter to buy and hold investors, this changes some of the cost calculations for advanced traders expecting to utilize margin heavily in their trading. That being said, most day traders will see the cost aspect as secondary once they experience the capabilities of TWS and see the buffet of markets and assets offered by Interactive Brokers.

No broker can match Interactive Brokers in terms of the range of assets you can trade and the number of markets you can trade them in.

TWS is the strongest overall platform for day trading with customizations and tools that will satisfy even the most sophisticated traders.

Interactive Brokers allows fractional share trading – something that many of its direct competitors are still catching up on.

Interactive Brokers still charges nominal fees, meaning that other brokerages can offer an overall lower trading cost.

Day traders can only stream data to one device at a time, which may affect traders with a multi-device workflow.

TWS is very powerful and customizable, but this also means it takes some time to learn and fully unlock the potential.

Fidelity: Best Low-Cost Day Trading Platform

  • Account Minimum: $0
  • Fees: $0 for stock/ETF trades, $0 plus $0.65/contract for options trade

Fidelity is not only the best low-cost day trading platform in our review, but it was actually the overall runner-up to Interactive Brokers, coming in just slightly ahead of TD Ameritrade. When we are looking at Fidelity from the day trading perspective, it is all about Active Trader Pro. Active Trader Pro is an excellent free platform for trading that will meet the needs of most traders without missing a beat. That said, it is Fidelity’s pricing that adds the real value for a typical day trader.

Fidelity charges no fees on stocks, ETFs, or OTCBB (penny stock) trades. Although no-fee stocks and ETF trades are now commonplace, no-fee penny stocks are still relatively rare. There are some brokers that match Fidelity in this, but many of them scored lower in terms of trading technology and customizability. Another edge for Fidelity, however, is the firm’s order execution. Over 96% of Fidelity orders take place as a price that is better than the national best bid or offer. This results in cost savings for day traders on almost every trade. If you are primarily trading equities and you want to keep your costs down as low as possible, then Fidelity is the brokerage for you.

Fidelity’s costs are low, its order execution is exceptional, and it sweeps your idle cash to give you a little more return while you are waiting to deploy your money.

Fidelity offers a range of excellent research and screeners.

Active Trader Pro is a flexible and powerful trading platform that is a close competitor with Interactive Brokers’ TWS in terms of functionality.

Fidelity does not offer futures, futures options, or cryptocurrency trading.

Day traders looking for more fundamental research may have to use the web platform in addition to Active Trader Pro.

How Day Traders Use Their Online Broker

Day traders may place their trades manually, often from a chart, or set up an automated system that generates orders on their behalf. Fundamental data is not a concern, but the ability to monitor price volatility, liquidity, trading volume, and breaking news, is key to successful day trading.

Day traders often prefer brokers who charge per share (rather than per trade). Traders also need real-time margin and buying power updates. Each broker ranked here affords their day-trading customers the ability to enter orders quickly by customizing the size of trades and turning off the trade confirmation screen. We sought brokers who allow traders to place multiple orders simultaneously, designate which trading venue will handle the order, and customize trading defaults.

Are You a Day Trader?

A key consideration for day traders is trading platform quality, which can impact things such as execution speed and price quotes. Day traders, especially those who trade using their own algorithms, need flawless data feeds or they risk entering orders based on errors in the data. In an environment where high-frequency traders place transactions in milliseconds, human traders must possess the best tools. Most brokers offer speedy trade executions, but slippage remains a concern. Traders should test for themselves how long a platform takes to execute a trade.

Commissions, margin rates, and other expenses are also top concerns for day traders. Even if a day trader can consistently beat the market, the profit from those positions must exceed the cost of commissions. For a high volume trader, commission costs can easily run into the hundreds or thousands of dollars per day. Traders can check these rates by contacting the broker or checking the broker website, but most offer special rates for highly active day traders.

It is also important for day traders to consider factors such as customer service and the broker’s financial stability. Customer service is vital during times of crisis. A crisis could be a computer crash or other failure when you need to reach support to place a trade. The best brokers offer dedicated account representatives for highly active day traders to assist in this regard.

The financial strength of the firm is also important since small brokerages can and do go out of business, but the main player in whether or not you can recover your assets is the clearing firm. Take a look at FINRA’s BrokerCheck page before signing on with a small firm to make sure they have not had claims filed against them for misdeeds or financial instability.

Methodology

Investopedia is dedicated to providing investors with unbiased, comprehensive reviews and ratings of online brokers. Our reviews are the result of months of evaluating all aspects of an online broker’s platform, including the user experience, the quality of trade executions, the products available on its platforms, costs and fees, security, the mobile experience and customer service. We established a rating scale based on our criteria, collecting thousands of data points that we weighed into our star-scoring system.

In addition, every broker we surveyed was required to fill out an extensive survey about all aspects of its platform that we used in our testing. Many of the online brokers we evaluated provided us with in-person demonstrations of its platforms at our offices.

When choosing an online broker, day traders place a premium on speed, reliability, and low cost. Features designed to appeal to long-term infrequent traders are unnecessary for day traders, who generally start a trading day with no positions in its portfolios, make a lot of transactions, and end the day with having closed all of those trades. The ability to monitor price volatility, liquidity, trading volume, and breaking news is key to successful day trading. Traders need real-time margin and buying power updates. Each broker ranked here affords its day-trading customers the ability to enter orders quickly by customizing the size of trades and turning off the trade confirmation screen. We sought brokers who allow traders to place multiple orders simultaneously, designate which trading venue will handle the order, and customize trading defaults.

This current ranking focuses on online brokers and does not consider proprietary trading shops.

Our team of industry experts, led by Theresa W. Carey, conducted our reviews and developed this best-in-industry methodology for ranking online investing platforms for users at all levels. Click here to read our full methodology.

Best Online Brokers 2020

The StockBrokers.com best online brokers 2020 review (10th annual) took five months to complete and produced over 30,000 words of research. Here’s how we tested.

Want to buy shares of stocks like Apple (AAPL), Facebook (FB), Disney (DIS), or Uber (UBER)? If so, you will need an online broker account.

Choosing an online stock broker is one of the most important decisions you will make as an investor. This guide aims to introduce online trading and break down the best online brokers available today.

As a previous full-time trader turned hobby enthusiast, since 2001, I have completed over 1,000 trades in my personal portfolio, finishing 2020 with a total 2,574 individual buys and sells.

While the markets are anything but certain, you can feel confident StockBrokers.com has your back in 2020 to help you choose the best broker.

Best Online Brokers 2020

  • TD Ameritrade – Best for overall and beginners
  • Fidelity – Best research experience
  • Charles Schwab – Best for IRA accounts
  • E*TRADE – Best web platform
  • Interactive Brokers – Best for professionals
  • Merrill Edge – Best rewards program
  • TradeStation – Best platform technology

1. TD Ameritrade

Overall | Open Account

Exclusive Offer: Get up to $600 and trade commission-free with TD Ameritrade.

TD Ameritrade delivers the ultimate package for investors, including $0 trades, fantastic trading platforms, excellent market research, industry-leading education for beginners, and reliable customer service. This outstanding all-round experience makes TD Ameritrade our top overall broker in 2020.

Why Choose TD Ameritrade:

  • Excellent trading platform thinkorswim. After spending hundreds of hours testing desktop platforms, I give thinkorswim my top recommendation, thanks to its modern feel and outstanding trader tools. That includes the mobile app, which is my favorite for active traders.
  • Great for beginner investors. TD Ameritrade has the largest selection of educational materials in the industry by far, with over 200 instructional videos covering every investment topic imaginable. Furthermore, the whole learning center is gamified, tracking your progress as you go with quizzes bringing concepts together at the end of each course.
  • Robust research. TD Ameritrade provides customers access to its own TV Network and trader magazine. Depth is across the board, as TD Ameritrade also uses proprietary data to analyze millions of tweets to power its Social Signals tool.
  • Industry-leading technology. TD Ameritrade is the only broker to offer customers the ability to access their accounts from Twitter, Apple Chat, Facebook, and Alexa. Technology and innovation are core parts of TD Ameritrade’s DNA.
Feature TD Ameritrade
Review Read full review
Minimum Deposit $0
Stock Trades $0 per trade
Option Trades $0 + $0.65 per contract
Commission-Free ETFs all
Trading Platform thinkorswim

2. Fidelity

Overall | Open Account

Trade Commission-Free: No commissions to trade online U.S. stocks, ETFs, and options. 1

Fidelity is a value-driven online broker offering $0 stock trades, industry-leading research, excellent trading tools, an easy-to-use mobile app, and comprehensive retirement services. Serving over 30 million customers, Fidelity is a winner for everyday investors.

Why Choose Fidelity:

  • Terrific for investment research. Research at Fidelity stands out for its 16 equity research reports, excellent in-house market analysis, and quotes experience that is meticulously crafted for maximum usability.
  • Great for new investors. Behind TD Ameritrade, Fidelity is my second broker recommendation for beginner stock traders. Fidelity offers investors the perfect blend of ease of use, excellent research tools, as well as a great education center.
  • Excellent mobile app for everyday investors. The Fidelity mobile app is a winner for investors because it is easy to use, packed full of market research, and includes a wide variety of trading tools.
Feature Fidelity
Review Read full review
Minimum Deposit $0
Stock Trades $0 per trade
Option Trades $0.65 per contract
Commission-Free ETFs all
Trading Platform Active Trader Pro

3. Charles Schwab

Overall | Open Account

Current Offer: $0 online stock, ETF, and options commissions at Schwab.

Founded in 1973, Charles Schwab is a full-service brokerage with over $3 trillion in total client assets. As a low-cost leader offering $0 stock trades, Charles Schwab provides investors excellent stock research, quality trade tools, and professional planning for the future.

Why Choose Charles Schwab:

  • Excellent market research. Schwab boasts a full lineup of 26 in-house experts who provide numerous articles, known as Schwab Insights, on a variety of market topics throughout each week.
  • Leader in retirement services. Charles Schwab shines with its Schwab Intelligent Portfolios (robo-advisor) and Schwab Intelligent Portfolios Premium (human advisor) services.
Feature Charles Schwab
Review Read full review
Minimum Deposit $0
Stock Trades $0 per trade
Option Trades $0.65 per contract
Commission-Free ETFs all
Trading Platform StreetSmart Edge

4. E*TRADE

Overall | Open Account

Promo Offer: Get $100 when you deposit just $5,000 into a new E*TRADE account!

Founded in 1982 as one of the first online brokerages in the United States, E*TRADE understands what investors need to succeed in the market. E*TRADE highlights include $0 trades, two excellent mobile apps, and the Power E*TRADE platform, which is great for options trading.

Why Choose E*TRADE:

  • Excellent web platform that is a winner for options trading. Our favorite web-platform again this year, Power E*TRADE, combines the best of both worlds: ease of use with fantastic trading tools. While just decent for stock trading, Power E*TRADE is terrific for options trading.
  • Full-featured mobile apps. Among all the online brokers we track on StockBrokers.com, E*TRADE offers the most mobile app features in a well-designed, easy to use experience.
Feature E*TRADE
Review Read full review
Minimum Deposit $0
Stock Trades $0 per trade
Option Trades $0.65 per contract
Commission-Free ETFs all
Trading Platform Power E*TRADE

5. Interactive Brokers

Overall | Open Account

Exclusive Offer: New clients that open an account today receive a special margin rate.

While Interactive Brokers is not well known for its casual investor offering, it leads the industry with low-cost trading for professionals. Through the Trader Workstation (TWS) platform, Interactive Brokers offers excellent tools and an extensive selection of tradeable securities.

Why Choose Interactive Brokers:

  • Excellent for professional traders. Interactive Brokers offers customers an arsenal of 63 different order types, the most in the industry by a landslide. Margin rates are also the lowest in the industry, across the board.
  • Great for day trading. Interactive Brokers does not accept payment for order flow (IBKR Pro only). This makes it’s already low pricing even better because there are no hidden execution costs.
  • Global access. The most diverse offering by a landslide, Interactive Brokers offers trading in 26 countries and over 125 market centers.
Feature Interactive Brokers
Review Read full review
Minimum Deposit $0
Stock Trades $.005 per share (IBKR Pro) // $0 (IBKR Lite)
Option Trades $0.65 per contract (IBKR Pro) // $0 (IBKR Lite)
Commission-Free ETFs 48 (IBKR Pro) // all (IBKR Lite)
Trading Platform Trader Workstation (TWS)

6. Merrill Edge

Overall | Open Account

Current Offer: Invest in a new account and get up to $600.

Backed by parent company Bank of America, Merrill Edge delivers $0 stock and ETF trades with fantastic research and customer service. Better yet, for current banking customers, Merrill Edge’s Preferred Rewards program offers the best rewards benefits across the industry.

Why Choose Merrill Edge:

  • Preferred Rewards. To open an account with Merrill Edge, you do not have to be a Bank of America customer. That said, it is far easier to reach the minimum combined account balance to earn all sorts of perks under the Preferred Rewards program. Here’s a list.
  • Excellent ESG (environmental, social, and governance) research. Merrill Edge offers Stock Story, Fund Story, and Portfolio Story, which makes conducting market research both educational and insightful. Full ESG Reports are also included.
  • Great customer service. In our national testing, Merrill Edge consistently delivered agent connection times under one minute.
Feature Merrill Edge
Review Read full review
Minimum Deposit $0
Stock Trades $0 per trade
Option Trades $0.65 per contract
Commission-Free ETFs all
Trading Platform Merrill Edge MarketPro

7. TradeStation

Overall | Open Account

Promo Offer: Commission-Free Trades on Stocks, ETFs & Options Trades.

As a trading technology leader, TradeStation supports casual traders through its web-based platform and active traders through its award-winning desktop platform, all with $0 stock and ETF trades.

Why Choose TradeStation:

  • Excellent trading platform. TradeStation 10 is a desktop-based, downloadable trading platform for online trading that is robust and full of trading tools. In our testing, TradeStation 10 is rivaled only by TD Ameritrade’s thinkorswim platform.
  • Great mobile app for stocks and options trading. From monitoring multiple watch lists and setting price alerts, to analyzing stock charts and placing trades, TradeStation Mobile provides a fantastic all-around experience for traders.
Feature TradeStation
Review Read full review
Minimum Deposit $0
Stock Trades $0 per trade
Option Trades $0.50 per contract
Commission-Free ETFs all
Trading Platform TradeStation 10

More Online Brokers

Outside of our top seven online brokers for 2020, there are eight other brokerages we reviewed: Ally Invest, Firstrade, Chase You Invest Trade, SogoTrade, Robinhood, ChoiceTrade, Lightspeed, and Cobra Trading. Here’s our high-level takeaways for each broker. To dive deeper, read our full review.

8. Ally Invest, “Backed by Ally Financial, Ally Invest is a low-cost broker providing $0 stock and ETF trades. Ally’s complete universal-account management experience and easy to use website makes the brokerage great for current Ally Bank customers and everyday investors alike.” Read full review

9. Firstrade, “Firstrade offers $0 stock, ETF, and options trades, and is best known for its easy-to-use website, alongside its Chinese language services. While Firstrade offers Morningstar research and a variety of tools, its overall offering struggles to stand out against household name brands who are also priced at $0.” Read full review

10. Chase You Invest Trade, “Chase You Invest Trade provides current Chase Bank customers a convenient way to invest in the stock market. While Chase doesn’t provide all the bells and whistles like some of its non-bank competitors, our testing found the site to be easy to use and reliable overall.” Read full review

11. SogoTrade, “SogoTrade is an online discount brokerage that charges $4.88 base commissions and supports Chinese-speaking customers. Unfortunately, in a world where $0 trades are the baseline, despite offering five trading platforms for stocks and options, SogoTrade struggles to stand out.” Read full review

12. Robinhood, “Robinhood used to shine thanks to its easy-to-use mobile app and $0 trades. However, today, all of the largest online brokers offer free stock and ETF trades. As a result, it is much more difficult for Robinhood to outduel the competition.” Read full review

13. ChoiceTrade, “While ChoiceTrade advertises free stock trades, unfortunately, monthly costs add up, and, overall, ChoiceTrade provides customers an online investing experience not worth the hassle.” Read full review

14. Lightspeed, “Lightspeed is a direct-access online brokerage that focuses on serving active and professional traders through its in-house and third-party trading platforms. Casual traders beware, not trading enough means paying high monthly platform fees.” Read full review

15. Cobra Trading, “Cobra Trading was founded in 2003 by Chadd Hessing as a direct-access, low-cost online brokerage for professional stock traders. While Cobra Trading offers multiple trading platforms and personalized service, trading costs are more expensive than leader Interactive Brokers.” Read full review

2020 Category Winners

For the StockBrokers.com 2020 Online Broker Review, all online broker participants were assessed on 236 different variables across eight Core categories. 3,540 data points were collected in total. Here are the 2020 Core category winners. Here’s how we tested.

Alongside Core categories, StockBrokers.com ranks brokers by the most popular Investor categories. Here are the 2020 Investor category winners.

Finally, each year StockBrokers.com honors the brokerages who go above and beyond in the areas that matter most to investors. Here are the 2020 industry award winners.

2020 Overall Ranking

Here’s the Overall rankings for the 15 online brokers who participated in our 2020 Broker Review, sorted by Overall ranking.

Note: Robinhood does not offer phone support for customers. As a result, Robinhood shows “Not Rated” for Customer Service. To calculate an Overall rating, the points allocated to Customer Service were proportionally allocated to the remaining categories.

How do I choose an online brokerage?

When selecting a new online broker, the first step is to read reviews and see what features matter most to you. Are low-cost trade commissions most important? What about customer service, the trading platform, mobile app, investment research, ease of use, or education? With many brokers specializing in different areas, it is crucial to evaluate all categories by reading full-length broker reviews.

How do I assess trading costs?

When trading stocks online, it is essential to understand what the costs are to buy and sell shares. Fortunately, today in 2020, most online brokers charge $0 to trade shares of stocks. That said, if day trading, additional costs come into play, including routing fees, market data fees, and platform fees.

What trading tools do online brokers offer?

To trade stocks online successfully, some stock traders rely purely on their trading tools. Trading platforms come in one of three forms: desktop, web (browser), or mobile. Advanced charting, scanning, hotkeys, virtual trading, watch lists, ladder trading, Level II quotes, and backtesting are just a sampling of the features some brokers offer. To compare trading platform features, use the online brokerage comparison tool.

Do online brokers offer more than just stocks and options trading?

Are you only trading stocks online, or are you interested in ETFs, mutual funds, options, futures, and forex too? In the United States, different regulations are required for brokers who support more complex asset classes. For example, stocks, ETFs, and options are the most commonly offered, while forex trading is the least commonly offered.

Does every online broker provide a mobile app?

While every online broker offers a mobile app, quality varies widely. Managing a stock brokerage account on the go is certainly important for investors who travel and frequently use their smartphones. To find the best app for stock trading, we scored broker apps on 42 individual features.

Should I care about customer service?

It depends. 24/7 support is essential to some investors, while others may be completely fine using online chat during regular market hours or receiving an email back within one business day. That said, most investors neglect to think about a market crisis like a flash crash. In our experience, it certainly doesn’t hurt to have reliable customer service available for whenever the need may arise.

How important is stock research?

There are two types of stock research: fundamental and technical. Fundamental research explores company metrics such as earnings growth, earnings per share (EPS), debt, sales growth, and market capitalization. Meanwhile, technical analysis is all about learning how to read a stock chart and use historical price performance to help you predict future price direction. The best online brokerages offer tools to cover both types thoroughly, and we checked for 54 individual features during our 2020 Review. To compare research features, use the online brokerage comparison tool.

How can I verify if my online broker is regulated?

Online stock brokers operating in the United States and governed by US law are regulated by the SEC and must be members of FINRA and SIPC. To verify whether your online brokerage is regulated, scroll to the footer of their homepage, then read their disclosures. Using the FINRA broker check tool is another easy way to verify compliance.

Do online brokerages also offer banking services?

Many online brokerages do not limit their customers to just online stock trading. Full-service brokerages offer banking services including checking accounts, savings accounts, credit cards, mortgages, and more with deposits of up to $250,000 backed by the FDIC. Bank of America (Merrill Edge) and Chase (Chase You Invest Trade) are two examples of banks that also offer online trading.

Should I worry about security?

Fortunately, at least in the United States, investors do not have too much to worry about when it comes to account security. This is especially true when choosing a brokerage that is large, well known, and properly regulated. Every website should be secured with SSL encryption, and client data should be stored in secure servers. Dual-factor authentication and Face ID are other security protocols quickly growing in popularity.

With $0 trades, how important is order execution?

It is important to understand how your orders are routed and executed. There is a wide variation between quality and poor order execution. Unfortunately, most online stock traders can’t tell the difference. To help investors out, we tested brokers and wrote a complete guide to understanding order execution.

Can I trade internationally with my online broker?

While most online brokers do not offer international trading, some do. Nearly every broker supports trading American depositary receipts (ADRs), which offers US investors an easy, simple way to invest in foreign companies. However, if you want to buy physical shares of an international company, then you need to do your research. Interactive Brokers is the leader in this space but is built for professionals. For casual investing, both Fidelity and Charles Schwab offer international stock trading.

Explore our other online trading guides:

Methodology

For the StockBrokers.com tenth annual best online brokers review published in January 2020, a total of 3,540 data points were collected over six months and used to score brokers. This makes StockBrokers.com home to the largest independent database on the web covering the online broker industry.

Participation is required to be included. Each broker completed an in-depth data profile and provided executive time (live in person or over the web) for an annual update meeting. Our rigorous data validation process yields an error rate of less than .001% each year, providing site visitors quality data they can trust. Learn more about how we test.

More from the editor

Alongside the StockBrokers.com annual review, our fourth annual international forex brokers review, which includes 30 forex brokers, was also published on our sister site, ForexBrokers.com. Finally, be sure to check the latest financial advisor ratings, which you can view on investor.com.

Still aren’t sure which online broker to choose? Email us a question! Whether you are a beginner investor learning the ropes or a professional trader, we are here to help. Email us your online broker specific question and we will respond within one business day.

About the author: Blain Reinkensmeyer As Head of Research at StockBrokers.com, Blain Reinkensmeyer has 18 years of trading experience with over 1,000 trades placed during that time. Referenced as a leading expert on the US online brokerage industry, Blain has been quoted in the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Forbes, and the Chicago Tribune, among others.

All pricing data was obtained from a published web site as of 01/20/2020 and is believed to be accurate, but is not guaranteed. For stock trade rates, advertised pricing is for a standard order size of 500 shares of stock priced at $30 per share. For options orders, an options regulatory fee per contract may apply.

TD Ameritrade, Inc. and StockBrokers.com are separate, unaffiliated companies and are not responsible for each other’s services and products. View terms.

1 $0.00 commission applies to online U.S. equity trades, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), and options (+ $0.65 per contract fee) in a Fidelity retail account only for Fidelity Brokerage Services LLC retail clients. Sell orders are subject to an activity assessment fee (from $0.01 to $0.03 per $1,000 of principal). There is an Options Regulatory Fee (from $0.03 to $0.05 per contract), which applies to both option buy and sell transactions. The fee is subject to change. Other exclusions and conditions may apply. See Fidelity.com/commissions for details. Employee equity compensation transactions and accounts managed by advisors or intermediaries through Fidelity Clearing & Custody Solutions® are subject to different commission schedules.

Options trading entails significant risk and is not appropriate for all investors. Certain complex options strategies carry additional risk. Before trading options, please read Characteristics and Risks of Standardized Options. Supporting documentation for any claims, if applicable, will be furnished upon request.

Advertiser Disclosure: StockBrokers.com helps investors across the globe by spending over 1,000 hours each year testing and researching online brokers. How do we make money? Our partners compensate us through paid advertising. While partners may pay to provide offers or be featured, e.g. exclusive offers, they cannot pay to alter our recommendations, advice, ratings, or any other content throughout the site. Furthermore, our content and research teams do not participate in any advertising planning nor are they permitted access to advertising campaign data. Here is a list of our partners.

Disclaimer: It is our organization’s primary mission to provide reviews, commentary, and analysis that are unbiased and objective. While StockBrokers.com has all data verified by industry participants, it can vary from time to time. Operating as an online business, this site may be compensated through third party advertisers. Our receipt of such compensation shall not be construed as an endorsement or recommendation by StockBrokers.com, nor shall it bias our reviews, analysis, and opinions. Please see our General Disclaimers for more information.

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6 Crucial Things to Consider When Choosing a Forex Broker

The retail forex market is so competitive that just thinking about having to sift through all the available brokers can give you a major headache.

Choosing which forex broker to trade with can be a very overwhelming task especially if you don’t know what you should be looking for.

1. Security

The first and foremost characteristic that a good broker must have is a high level of security. After all, you’re not going to hand over thousands of dollars to a person who simply claims he’s legit, right?

Fortunately, checking the credibility of a forex broker isn’t very hard. There are regulatory agencies all over the world that separate the trustworthy from the fraudulent.

Below is a list of countries with their corresponding regulatory bodies:

  • United States: National Futures Association (NFA) and Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC)
  • United Kingdom: Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA)
  • Australia: Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC)
  • Switzerland: Swiss Federal Banking Commission (SFBC)
  • Germany: Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht (BaFIN)
  • France: Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF)
  • Canada: Investment Information Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC)

Before even THINKING of putting your money in a broker, make sure that the broker is a member of the regulatory bodies mentioned above.

2. Transaction Costs

No matter what kind of currency trader you are, like it or not, you will always be subject to transaction costs.

Sometimes you may need to sacrifice low transaction for a more reliable broker.

Make sure you know if you need tight spreads for your type of trading, and then review your available options. It’s all about finding the correct balance between security and low transaction costs.

3. Deposit and Withdrawal

Good FX brokers will allow you to deposit funds and withdraw your earnings hassle-free.

Brokers really have no reason to make it hard for you to withdraw your profits because the only reason they hold your funds is to facilitate trading.

Your broker only holds your money to make trading easier so there is no reason for you to have a hard time getting the profits you have earned. Your broker should make sure that the withdrawal process is speedy and smooth.

4. Trading Platform

In online forex trading, most trading activity happens through the brokers’ trading platform. This means that the trading platform of your broker must be user-friendly and stable.

When looking for a broker, always check what its trading platform has to offer.

Does it offer free news feed? How about easy-to-use technical and charting tools? Does it present you with all the information you will need to trade properly?

5. Execution

It is mandatory that your broker fills you at the best possible price for your orders.

For example, assuming you have a stable internet connection, if you click “buy” EUR/USD for 1.3000, you should get filled at that price or within micro-pips of it. The speed at which your orders get filled is very important, especially if you’re a scalper.

A few pips difference in price can make that much harder on you to win that trade.

6. Customer Service

Brokers aren’t perfect, and therefore you must pick a broker that you could easily contact when problems arise.

The competence of brokers when dealing with account or technical support issues is just as important as their performance on executing trades.

Brokers may be kind and helpful during the account opening process, but have terrible “after sales” support.

Best Binary Options Brokers 2020:
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