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4 best trading apps of 2021

Beginners and advanced traders alike can invest on the go with these trading apps.

The best trading apps should be easy to use, offer multiple financial instruments to trade and have lower trading fees than competitors. Depending on your needs, you can get a beginner-friendly app with fewer bells and whistles or you can get the ultimate trading experience with advanced charting features and research tools.

To deliver you the best trading apps, I compared more than 20 popular trading apps and selected the four that stood out from the competition in terms of fees, simplicity, research tools and the number of instruments you can trade.

Best trading app for beginners: Robinhood

Robinhood

Finder rating 3.5 / 5 ★★★★★

Go to site
on Robinhood's secure site
Robinhood was one of the first trading platforms aimed at beginner investors with its commission-free pricing structure and simple mobile app interface. To help you learn, there are tips on order types when you start the app. What's more, if you're learning to invest, you don't need a large account — you can start with almost any amount you want and buy fractions of shares that would otherwise be out of reach for you.

That said, the app lacks advanced charting features and indicators, which you likely won't need at first. But if you want to dive deeper into technical analysis and use advanced order types, you'll have to consider switching brokers later on.

Best trading app overall: Webull

Webull

Finder rating 4.4 / 5 ★★★★★

Go to site
on Webull's secure site
Webull is undoubtedly the best trading app you can get. It's incredibly fast and stable, and it comes with some of the lowest fees you can find. On top of that, it offers a host of research tools and analytics to help you make the best trading decisions. This makes it an excellent choice for beginners and advanced traders alike.

What's more, an IRA account is available to open and start investing for your retirement. The only downside is that you can't trade mutual funds, bonds or OTC stocks. For most investors, though, this shouldn't be a big deal.

Best trading app for automated investing: SoFi

Sofi Invest

Finder rating 4.35 / 5 ★★★★★

Go to site
on SoFi Wealth Management's secure site
Aside from all the standard features like trading stocks, ETFs and a few cryptocurrencies, SoFi offers something else - an automated investing solution without a management fee. Also known as a robo-advisor, this feature lets you choose your financial goals and risk, and SoFi will manage your portfolio on your behalf. Once you set it up, use your SoFi trading app to track your portfolio's performance.

SoFi's trading app is also great for those who want to use SoFi's other products and services, such as credit cards, home loans or personal loans. On the downside, active and experienced traders will find the app's charting features and research tools lackluster.

Best trading app for international stocks: Interactive Brokers (IBKR)

Interactive Brokers

Finder rating 4.1 / 5 ★★★★★

With all its complexity, the IBKR mobile app rivals the best trading app Webull. The latter is more intuitive to use, and it's slightly more user-friendly, which is why it came out on top. But both apps have extensive research tools, news updates, alerts and even stock screeners.

Where IBKR outpaces all competitors is the access to 135 foreign markets, which gives you unparalleled opportunity to invest abroad. On top of that, you can trade bonds, futures and currencies — none of which Webull or Robinhood offers.

IBKR offers the full investor package in one app. On the downside, depending on which platform you use and to which services you subscribe, IBKR can be slightly more expensive than competitor apps.

How to choose the best trading app for you

Because everyone’s needs are different, the best trading app for one person may not work for another. To find the right one for you, consider the following:

  • Fees. This should be on top of your list because why pay trading fees when there are many trading apps that charge no commission on stocks and ETFs?
  • Ease of use. Another important factor to consider is how intuitive the app is. Luckily, most apps let you download and check them out before you open an account.
  • Financial instruments. Not every trading app offers all financial instruments. Consider what you want to trade and choose the app that offers that.
  • Research and tools. More experienced traders who make their trading decisions with research will want to compare apps that offer the package they need.

Compare trading platforms

Name Product Asset types Option trade fee Annual fee Signup bonus
Robinhood
Stocks, Options, ETFs, Cryptocurrency
$0
0%
Free stock (chosen randomly with a value anywhere between $2.50 and $200)
Sign up using the "go to site" link
Make unlimited commission-free trades in stocks, funds, and options with Robinhood Financial.
J.P. Morgan Self-Directed Investing
Stocks, Bonds, Options, Mutual funds, ETFs
$0 + $0.65/contract
0%
N/A
INVESTMENT AND INSURANCE PRODUCTS ARE: NOT A DEPOSIT • NOT FDIC INSURED • NO BANK GUARANTEE • MAY LOSE VALUE
Sofi Invest
Stocks, ETFs, Cryptocurrency
N/A
0%
Get one free stock worth up to $1,000
Open an account
A free way to invest in stocks, ETFs and crypto.
Public
Stocks, ETFs
N/A
$0 per month
Download and sign up with Public.com; approved accounts receive a free stock slice worth up to $70, selected from 9 popular stocks.
Open an account
Commission-free trading in stocks and ETFs with a social networking twist.
Webull
Stocks, Options, ETFs
$0
0%
Get two free stocks valued between $3.00 and $300 with a deposit to any new account.
Open an account
Margin financing rates start at 3.99%. No monthly subscription fees for margin.
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Compare up to 4 providers

*Signup bonus information updated weekly.

Disclaimer: The value of any investment can go up or down depending on news, trends and market conditions. We are not investment advisers, so do your own due diligence to understand the risks before you invest.

Bottom line

We selected the best trading apps to narrow down your options. If none of those work for you, compare other apps and keep an eye on fees, ease of use, the number of financial instruments and whether they offer advanced charting tools and research.

Alternatively, you can sign up for the best broker for you and use its desktop platform for trading. Almost every broker offers a mobile app, and if you don’t like it, you can use it to monitor your account between trades.

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