In this guide

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  • Frequently asked questions
  • Your reviews
  • Ask a question
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Interactive Brokers
4.3
★★★★★
Finder score
Stock trade fee
$0
Minimum deposit
$0
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Our verdict

Invest in stocks, options, futures, cryptocurrencies, forex, bonds and funds all from a single account.

Consider Interactive Brokers (IBKR) if you're an active or professional investor wanting to diversify in global markets and want access to a suite of advanced research and trading tools. Look elsewhere if you want a trading platform with more dependable customer support. Interactive Brokers is the winner for Best Overall Broker in the 2022 Finder Stock Trading Platform Awards.

Best for: Beginner to advanced investors and active traders.

Pros

  • Extensive range of tradable securities
  • Variety of trading platforms for different experience levels
  • Optional robo-advisor
  • Robust research, tools and educational resources
  • Access to foreign stocks in 150 global markets
  • Overnight trading

Cons

  • Unreliable customer support
  • Buggy security features that complicate logging in and trading

In this guide

  • Our verdict
  • Frequently asked questions
  • Your reviews
  • Ask a question

How we rated Interactive Brokers’ features

Fees

★★★★★

Commission-free stock and ETF trades and low miscellaneous fees, but Interactive Advisors’ management fee goes up to 0.75%.
Available securities

★★★★★

Most assets are available for trading, including crypto, currencies and mutual funds.
Customer support

★★★★★

Support can be reached 3 ways, but long wait times have been reported.
Mobile app

★★★★★

Mostly positive reviews, though customers complain that the app is sometimes buggy and unreliable.
Research and tools

★★★★★

Tools and resources are robust, but expect to pay for premium research.
Reliability

★★★★★

One major outage has been reported.
Bonus star

★★

We awarded two bonus stars, one for for offering access to multiple trading tiers and another for paper trading.

To learn how our star ratings are calculated, read our methodology at the bottom of the page.

Interactive Brokers is best for all types of investors

IBKR’s impressive trading tiers are designed to meet the varying needs of all kinds of investors, regardless of their investing experience. The broker is as sophisticated as it is robust, making it an ideal platform for experienced traders in need of excellent research tools for complex trades. It also offers newer investors a great deal with commission-free US stock trading and many guided trading tools in its mobile platforms.

What you can trade on Interactive Brokers

  • Stocks
  • ETFs
  • Options
  • Futures
  • Crypto
  • Forex
  • Bonds
  • Mutual funds
  • Event contracts
  • Metals

Account types available with Interactive Brokers

  • Brokerage
  • Retirement
  • Joint
  • Trust
  • Custodial

Where Interactive Brokers shines

IBKR offers a number of unique features that separates it from other brokers, including access to 150 markets in 33 countries and the ability to fund your account and trade assets in up to 27 currencies, fractional share trading, a stock yield enhancement program and access to multiple research platforms without additional cost. Plus, a cost-competitive robo-advisor with themed and actively-managed portfolios and the ability to manually adjust ETF weightings for greater control. IBKR also offers overnight trading of over 10,000 US Stocks and ETFs from 8:00 p.m. ET until 3:50 a.m. ET, beginning Sunday and ending Friday each week.

With fractional share trading you can buy US and European stocks and ETFs for as low as $1 for US shares and no minimums for European shares. What’s more, you can lend your shares to earn an extra income via the stock yield enhancement program. The way this works is you allow IBKR to borrow your shares in exchange for collateral, and then these shares are lent to traders who want to short the stock. Each day that your stock is loaned, you earn interest on the collateral based on market rates.

The IBKR Lite plan boasts commission-free US-listed stock and ETF trading while IBKR Pro has smart routing and offers up to 4.83% interest on uninvested cash balances. IBKR also offers some of the lowest margin rates in the business. For example, you can borrow against your account balances at 5.83% to 6.83% a year with IBKR Pro, while other brokerage platforms charge between 7.75% and 12.75% annually.

Where Interactive Brokers falls short

IBKR has a lot going for it, and there aren’t many glaring disadvantages to using this platform. One specific drawback we encountered is the unreliability of IBKR’s customer support. Though live chat is available 24 hours a day, Monday through Friday, connecting to a live agent was challenging. We could only access the live chat feature if we selected that we had an urgent account issue, and then it took several minutes to actually be connected to a live agent for help, though sometimes it never did. Live chat is also unavailable via the mobile app.

Separately, though it makes for a secure platform, IBKR’s security features sometimes makes logging in and trading complicated. We’ve seen instances where we log in and aren’t provided trading or market data permissions, forcing us to repeat the login process. This is a common complaint among IBKR’s mobile app reviewers.

Interactive Brokers’ fees

Fee typeIBKR LiteIBKR Pro
Minimum deposit$0$0
Annual fee$0$0
US-listed stock and ETF trade feesCommission-freeChoice of fixed or tiered pricing
Stock, ETF, option, crypto and fund trade feesFixed pricingChoice of fixed or tiered pricing
Bond and forex trade feesTiered pricingTiered pricing
Inactivity fee$0$0
Incoming ACH transfers$0$0
Wire, check or ACH withdrawal fees1 free withdrawal per calendar month. Thereafter:
$10 per wire withdrawal
$4 per check withdrawal
$1 per ACH withdrawal
1 free withdrawal per calendar month. Thereafter:
$10 per wire withdrawal
$4 per check withdrawal
$1 per ACH withdrawal
Outgoing account transfer fee$0$0

Is Interactive Brokers legit?

Yes, it is. IBKR is a multinational brokerage firm founded in 1977. It’s authorized and regulated by the US Securities and Exchange Commission and is a member of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC).

Interactive Brokers’ platform offers extensive trading and analysis tools

  • PortfolioAnalyst. Get detailed information on your portfolio, including in which assets you are invested and how much and how your portfolio performed over time compared to S&P 500. You can also add your external accounts, such as savings accounts or retirement accounts to get a global overview of your assets.
  • IBKR GlobalAnalyst. This tool helps you find the right company to invest in. You get to screen for stocks by parameters that you set, such as industry, currency, market cap, country and more. What’s cool about this feature is that it’s free regardless weather you are IBKR client or not.
  • OptionTrader. This tool is designed for professional options traders. Beginners get to use the Options Wizard, which simplifies options trading. Instead of complicated options data to choose from, beginners can directly trade by tapping buttons like “the asset price will go up” or “down”.
  • FXTrader. This feature is designed with professional Forex traders in mind. The main feature of FXTrader is interbank-quality spreads where you get quotes from multiple liquidity providers with spreads as low as 1/10 pip.
  • Fundamentals Explorer. This is a powerful tool for every trader and investors because you get analyst ratings and price targets, full company information including ESG ratings, EPS, financial data, ownership and more.
  • Social Sentiment. The Social Sentiment tool takes social media information, such as tweets about the company, to form a score, which can be positive or negative. This can be another addition to your decision-making arsenal.
  • Technical Insights. IBKR’s Traders Workstation (TWS) is one of the most robust trading platforms you can get. It comes with a variety of technical charts and indicators that you can customize to your own liking.
  • Interactive Advisors. Invest in curated portfolios with Interactive Brokers’ robo-advisor with a $100 minimum.
  • EventTrader. You can now trade event contracts based on the outcome of an event. These are short-term positions that last only for one trading day. For example, you can trade the following question: “Will the S&P 500 close above 3,900 today?” with yes and no answers. Each answer costs differently and has different payout.
  • Access to micro futures. Trade micro e-mini futures on the S&P 500, Nasdaq-100, Dow Jones Industrial Average and Russell 2000 indices with commissions as low as $0.32 to $0.47 per contract.
  • Single login for all platforms. Use your username and password to log in to all platforms, including the TWS, mobile and web. You can place your orders through any of these platforms and they will sync to the rest of the platforms.

IBKR Mobile

IBKR Mobile, available for iOS and Android devices, lets you trade and monitor your account on the go. It packs a punch, offering a range of powerful trading tools and stock information. You can also get advanced order types, in-depth fundamentals research and chart indicators.
Interactive Brokers App

IBKR GlobalTrader

This is another IBKR mobile app for investors interested in worldwide trading which allows you to easily trade global stocks and options from your phone. It provides you access to over 90 stock exchanges in the US, Canada, Europe and Asia. IBKR offers users a free trial of this app to practice trading up to $10,000 in a simulated environment.

Trader Workstation

Trader Workstation (TWS) is IBKR’s flagship pro-level desktop trading platform for active traders. There’s a customizable workspace boasting all of IBKR’s comprehensive tools and features including helpful tutorials. Use OptionTrader, Risk Navigator, Rebalance Portfolio and FXTrader and access 100+ order types and algorithms.

Client Portal

Trade and manage your account with Client Portal, IBKR’s web application. Check quotes, company-specific news and key performance metrics, then check account balances and place trades. Fundamentals Explorer gives you key ratios and financials, analyst ratings and institutional ownership. You’ll be able to see Twitter mentions of a stock through the Social Sentiment feature and check technical indicators and alerts.

IMPACT

IMPACT is a mobile trading app designed to help investors find and trade in companies based on unique, personal values about things like climate and social issues. IBKR GIVE enables users to align their IMPACT values with non-profit organizations and make cash donations directly from the app. This Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) investing app also offers commission-free trading on US-listed stocks and ETFs, fractional shares, crypto and mutual funds.

Interactive Brokers’ app store reviews

App storeRatingTotal reviews
Google Play 4.70 31,038
Apple Store 4.70 350

Interactive Brokers’ customer support

You can reach Interactive Broker in three ways:

  • Phone
  • Live chat
  • Email

How to open an account with Interactive Brokers

  1. Click the “Sign up now” button below (you can also download the Interactive Broker app for Android or iPhone).
  2. Enter your username, email and password then select Create Account. Alternatively, sign up using Facebook and Google login credentials.
  3. Verify your email, which will bring you to your account page. Then hit Verify to confirm your account.
  4. Complete your profile by entering the required personal information, including your name, date of birth, address and Social Security number.
  5. Deposit funds to begin trading.

Eligibility and required information

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Prior knowledge of the product you wish to trade (you may be asked to conduct simulated trades using the demo version)
  • Possess liquid net assets of at least $20,000 if you’re over 21.
  • Valid Social Security number
  • Asset and income details
  • Your name and date of birth
  • Phone number and address
  • Employer name and contact details
  • Bank details to fund your account plus routing number for check deposits
  • Investment objectives and investing experience

Sign up now

How safe is Interactive Brokers?

Interactive Brokers uses two-factor authorization. It’s also considered safe due to its memberships with SEC, FINRA and SIPC. Each IBKR customer is protected up to $500,000 for securities and $250,000 for cash, should the broker face insolvency.

Compare Interactive Brokers to other platforms

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Interactive Brokers

★★★★★

Finder rating 4.3 / 5

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Available asset types

Stocks, Bonds, Options, Mutual funds, ETFs, Cryptocurrency, Futures, Forex, Treasury Bills


Stock trade fee

$0


Minimum deposit

$0


Complete signup bonus

SoFi Invest® logo

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Finder rating 4.1 / 5

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Stock trade fee

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Complete signup bonus

Get up to $1,000 in stock when you fund a new account within 30 days.

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Tastytrade

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Finder rating 4.6 / 5

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Available asset types

Stocks, Options, ETFs, Cryptocurrency, Futures, Treasury Bills


Stock trade fee

$0


Minimum deposit

$0


Complete signup bonus

Get $100-$5,000 when you open and fund an account with $5,000 to $1,000,000+

Frequently asked questions about Interactive Brokers

How we rate trading platforms

★★★★★5/5 — Excellent

★★★★★ 4/5 — Good

★★★★★ 3/5 — Average

★★★★★ 2/5 — Subpar

★★★★★ 1/5 — Poor

We analyze top online trading platforms and rate them one to five stars based on factors that are most important to you. These factors include fees, securities available for trade, customer support, customer feedback, platform resources and overall reliability.
For a complete breakdown of how we score each category, read the full methodology of how we rate trading platforms.

Frequently asked questions

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