Our pick: Tastyworks
- Trade stocks, ETFs, options and futures
- Advanced charting, tools
- Access to Tastytrade educational resources
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Interactive Brokers offers low fees for active and professional investors. But its advanced charting tools, inactivity fee and $20,000 net worth requirement might be too intimidating for some traders. Here are five trading platforms that give Interactive Brokers a run for their money.
These brokers are strong competitors that deliver similar — if not better — features.
TD Ameritrade is a full-service broker that gives you access to a suite of tools and educational resources to get started. But its real-time market research makes the platform robust enough to grow with you as you gain trading experience. And TD Ameritrade’s tools and research can hold their own against Interactive Brokers. For example, you’ll get technical analysis tools, such as candlestick charts, and market analysis reports to compare asset performance.
While TD Ameritrade doesn’t have the same third-party software integrations and access to international markets as Interactive Brokers, casual traders won’t get hit with an inactivity fee. What’s more, if you need some extra help, you can get advice on your portfolio through its brokerage services, including robo-advising or speaking with an investment advisor.
Webull and Interactive Brokers go toe-to-toe in many areas. For example, both platforms have comprehensive analysis tools, including customizable technical charts and real-time market data, that work well for day traders and short-term investors. And both offer paper trading accounts for market simulations, so you can test out new trading strategies before you put any real money on the line.
The biggest kicker is Webull’s extended-hours trading, which makes the full trading day from 4 am to 8 pm. Only Interactive Brokers Pro customers can get such an early head start.
Fidelity is an adaptable platform that appeals to all types of investors — new or experienced. Its platform is more intuitive with a user-friendly interface, so it doesn’t scare off beginners. And more experienced investors can customize its desktop version to make their own trading powerhouse.
While Fidelity offers similar trading fees as Interactive Brokers, it sets itself apart with its Cash Management Account (CMA), which can be linked to your brokerage accounts. The CMA comes with a Visa debit card, free checks and unlimited ATM fee reimbursements throughout the United States.
Tradestation is one of Interactive Brokers’ top competitors with its in-depth research tools, portfolio analysis features and third-party integrations. And while both platforms have a steep learning curve, Tradestation took steps to streamline its onboarding process in 2019 and improve overall usability.
With Tradestation, you’ll get access to extensive educational resources, including hundreds of webinars, as well as dynamic trading software on both its desktop platform and mobile app. But what sets it apart from Interactive Brokers, which only offers crypto futures, is the ability to own crypto assets directly.
But since Tradestation has a $2,000 minimum opening deposit, it’s better for active, high-volume traders.
Tastyworks is a derivatives-focused platform with sophisticated tools to help you evaluate volatility, risk and potential opportunities. You’ll get multiple watchlists, basic charting and a straightforward trade ticket. But what makes Tastyworks stand out is its graphical derivative trading analysis that produces a bell-shaped curve to help you find contracts.
You won’t pay commissions on stocks and ETFs or to close options and futures trades. But you’ll pay to open them.
Here are a few reasons why Interactive Brokers is a trading favorite and several of its limitations.
If you’re swapping brokers, the process may vary depending on your current broker and which one you’re moving to. Interactive Brokers allows one free transfer request per calendar month. After that, it charges $10 to wire transfer funds to another account and close your current one.
Interactive Brokers uses the Automated Customer Account Transfer Service (ACATS). You can expect to go through the following process.
*Signup bonus information updated weekly.
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