Barclays share dealing account | Is it worth it? | Finder UK

Barclays share dealing account review

Learn about the Barclays share dealing account and what you can invest in with it. Plus pros and cons.

Barclays’ Smart Investor cutting-edge online investment service is easy to use and lets you interact with nearly all stocks, shares and funds on the market. If you don’t currently bank with Barclays you will need to open an account to allow you to trade. Find out how it works and compare share dealing services.

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How does Barclays investing work?

With Barclays, you have three product options available to choose from. Which one you go for depends on your investments in the current tax year and how long you plan to invest for.

The products available with Barclays are:

  • Individual savings account (ISA)
  • Self invested personal pension (SIPP)
  • General investment account

Barclays ISA

This has the same characteristics as ISAs with other providers – we have a whole guide on stocks and shares ISAs if you’re not familiar with them.

In short:
You get an annual allowance, which is £20,000 for the 2020/2021 tax year. This is how much you can invest without paying a penny on your profits. Each year, you can open and pay into a new ISA or continue with the one you have, but you can’t pay into two ISAs of the same type in one financial year (April – March).

Barclays SIPP

The self-invested personal pension (SIPP for short) lets you prepare for retirement. You make your own investment decisions and may be entitled to tax relief on the amounts that you pay in.

Barclays general investment account

The general investment account is usually chosen by people who have already used their ISA allowance for the year, or are already paying into an ISA.
There are no limits on this account, but you may have to pay capital gains tax on your profits, so it takes a bit more thought than the ISA.

Paying-in options

There are three ways that you can fund your investments – these let you pay in a way that suits you. The three options are:

  • Make one-off payments or regular payments by direct debit.
  • Pay in with your debit card whenever you fancy it.
  • Transfer investments that you’ve already got with another provider.

Barclays investment strategies

You have three different strategies to choose from. This is based on your experience with investing and how much help you think you need. Barclays helpfully sorts out the three options with that in mind.

I want some help

This is for those who are looking for ready-made portfolios. Barclays has a selection of experts who know what they’re doing, and will attempt to balance the portfolios to make you some profit. Of course, this isn’t guaranteed.

These are 5 different portfolios available, all slightly different in terms of they aim to return and the risks involved. It’s really easy to invest like this – you just choose the portfolio based on your risk tolerance, open an account and leave Barclays to it.

NameRiskBalanceBarclays describes it as…
DefensiveLowest, but not risk free25% cash, 57% bonds and 18% sharesLike riding a bike with stabilisers on.
CautiousA little riskier, but still quite low risk16% cash, 51% bonds and 33% sharesTaking the stabilisers off your bike – you might wobble slightly, but it’s not too dangerous.
BalancedMedium8% cash, 39% bonds and 53% sharesRiding a bike on the road, but still in the cycle lane.
GrowthHigher risk – for those who want to take some chances2% cash, 24% bonds and 74% sharesRiding off-road – but making sure you’re wearing a helmet and knee pads.
AdventurousThe highest risk fund that Barclays offers – for those willing to take a large risk of loss to change getting a great reward.2% cash, 11% bonds, 87% sharesRiding down a mountain – you could suffer serious harm but the exhilaration could be worth it.

I need inspiration

This is a list of funds that have been put together by investment experts. You can use a mixture of these funds to balance out your risk and diversify your portfolio. We’ll explain this in a little more detail later.

There are a total of 34 funds in this list, each with solid reputations and sound investment processes. Barclays’ experts believe that these have the potential to generate consistent returns in 5 to 10 years.

The funds all have a focus on a country, a sector or a type of asset. If you want to diversify your portfolio then you’ll want to invest in funds over a series of different countries, sectors and types of assets.

I know what I’m doing

It’s in the name. If you know what you’re doing, (and really know, rather than have just read a few Reddit threads) then this is the option for you.

With this option, you can choose from thousands of investments. These include funds, equities and bonds. If you want, you can use the Barclays Research Centre to get information about the market to help you make decisions.

What are the benefits of the Barclays investment account?

  • Open account in minutes (if you have a Barclays current account)
  • Benefit from Barclays Price Improver. This gives you better prices than the ones quoted on the London Stock Exchange nearly all of the time.
  • Thousands of investment opportunities
  • Access to Barclays’ ready-made investments
  • Take advantage of experts views and opinions and use the research centre
  • You can invest from just £50, or £25 for recurring investments.

What can I invest in with Barclays?

Through a Barclays Investment Account or an Investment ISA you can get access to the below:


How safe is my investment?

Barclays is one of the largest banks in the world and is well trusted by those who use Barclays direct investing. It has several procedures and protocols in place to ensure that your money is kept safe and secure at all times.

Barclays is also regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and is bound by their rules and regulations in the conduct of our investment business.

Barclays customer service

We surveyed 750 people in December 2020. Barclays share dealing customers find it to be reliable and easy to use. Customers like that it’s got an app and find the dashboard useful.

Barclays has online chat and help over the phone if you have any questions. Its lines are open 7:30am to 7:00pm Monday to Thursday, 7:30am to 6:00pm on Friday and it’s closed during weekends and public holidays.

How to get started with Barclays share trading

It’s really easy to get started with share dealing, here’s how:

  1. Open an account. You need to choose which account you want, an ISA, a general investment account or self invested personal pension.
  2. Fund your account. Barclays asks for your bank details in the sign up process.
  3. Choose your investments. Barclays has loads to choose from – take a look above at what you can invest in.
  4. Invest. You’re good to go!

Pros and cons of Barclays share trading


  • Low fees.For stocks, ETFs, funds and bonds the fees are pretty reasonable
  • Search function and ideas. Barclays has organised the available investments by type. You can search for investments and browse its ideas.
  • Good research. Barclays has an expert team to offer research, ideas and strategies to help you decide what you want to do.


  • Limited charting tools. There are better tools available than with apps like Freetrade but it’s not to the same standard as Hargreaves Lansdown or Fineco.
  • Customer service isn’t 24 hours. If you’re more of a night owl when trading then any support you need will need to wait until the morning.
  • No learning tools. If you’re a first time investor then this might not be the platform to learn with. There’s no demo account either.

Our verdict

On the whole, Barclays is a good choice for share dealing, especially if you already have a current account with it, in the interests of keeping everything in one place. The fact that it’s with an already established and well known bank can give extra peace of mind. It has reasonable fees and a selection of ready made portfolios.

If you’re just starting out with investing, you might prefer a share dealing platform that’s got more learning tools and resources.

Compare share trading options

Table: sorted by promoted deals first
Data updated regularly
Name Product Price per trade Frequent trader rate Platform fees Brand description
UK: £2.95
US: $3.95
EU: €3.95
Your first 100 trades are free with Fineco (T&Cs apply)
Fineco Bank is good for share traders and investors looking for a complete platform and wide offer. The minimum deposit with Fineco is £0. Capital at risk.
eToro Free Stocks
Capital at risk. 0% commission but other fees may apply. The minimum deposit with eToro is $200.
Hargreaves Lansdown Fund and Share Account
Hargreaves Lansdown is the UK's number one platform for private investors, with the depth of features you'd expect from an established platform. The minimum deposit with HL is £1. Capital at risk.
Degiro Share Dealing
UK: £1.75 + 0.014% (max £5)
US: €0.50 + $0.004 per share
Degiro is widely seen as one of the best low-cost share brokers, for people who are looking to trade regularly. The minimum deposit with Degiro is £0. Capital at risk.
interactive investor Trading Account
£7.99 (with one free trade per month)
£9.99 per month
Interactive Investor offers everything most investors need. Its flat fees makes it pricey for small portfolios, but cheap for big ones. The minimum deposit with ii is £0. Capital at risk.

Compare up to 4 providers

Data updated regularly
Name Product Minimum deposit Maximum annual fee Price per trade Brand description
Moneybox stocks and shares ISA
0.45% and £1 monthly subscription fee (free for first 3 months)
Moneybox offers a smart and simple way to invest. Sign up in minutes and start investing with £1 via their award-winning app. Capital at risk.
interactive investor stocks and shares ISA
Any lump sum or £25 a month
Interactive Investor offers everything most investors need. Its flat fees makes it pricey for small portfolios, but cheap for big ones. Capital at risk.
Nutmeg stocks and shares ISA
Nutmeg offers three types of portfolios. Choose the one that goes with your investment style. Capital at risk.
Hargreaves Lansdown stocks and shares ISA
Hargreaves Lansdown is the UK's biggest wealth manager. It's got everything you'll need, from beginners to experienced investors. Capital at risk.
InvestEngine stocks and shares ISA
Offer - £50 welcome bonus for new customers. Subject to minimum investment. T&Cs apply. Capital at risk.
Moneyfarm stocks and shares ISA
Moneyfarm helps you meet your investment goals with fully-managed portfolios designed around you. Capital at risk.
Fidelity Stocks and Shares ISA
£1000 or a regular savings plan from £50
Fidelity is another good all-rounder, offering a good package at a decent price. Not suited for trading shares. Capital at risk.
Legal & General stocks and shares ISA
Legal & General stocks and shares ISA
£100 or £20 a month
Legal & General is a big financial services company which offers insurance, lifetime mortgage, pensions and stocks and shares ISAs. Capital at risk.
AJ Bell Stocks and Shares ISA
AJ Bell is a good all-rounder for people who to choose between shares, funds, ISAs and pensions. Capital at risk.
Saxo Markets stocks and shares ISA
No minimum deposit requirement
Saxo Markets offers a wide access to a range of stocks, ETFs and funds. Capital at risk.

Compare up to 4 providers

Data updated regularly
Name Product Minimum investment Choose from Fee for a £50,000 pension pot Brand description
Interactive Investor Pension
Any lump sum or £25 a month
Over 3,000 funds
Annual fee: £239.88, fund fees: £50-500
interactive investor is a flat-fee platform, which makes it cost effective for larger portfolios. Capital at risk.
Moneyfarm Pension
£1,500 (initial investment)
7 funds
Moneyfarm has pensions that are matched against your risk appetite, goals and planned retirement date. Capital at risk.
AJ Bell Pension
Over 2,000 funds
Annual fee: £125, includes fund fees
AJ Bell has two different pension options, a self managed pension and one that is managed for you. Capital at risk.
PensionBee Pension
No minimum
9 funds
Annual fee: £250-475, includes fund fees
Pension Bee is a newbie in the pension market. It helps consolidate your pension plans into one place. Capital at risk.
Hargreaves Lansdown Pension
£100 or £25 a month
2,500 funds
Annual fee: £225 (£200 cap if holding shares), fund fees included
Hargreaves Lansdown is the UK's biggest wealth manager. It's got three different retirement options. Capital at risk.
Saxo Markets Pension
Saxo Markets Pension
Over 11,000 funds
No annual fee
Saxo Markets gives flexibility and control over your investment strategy. Capital at risk.
No minimum
4 portfolios
Annual fee: £375-455, fund fees included
Moneybox Pension
3 funds
Annual fee: £225, fund fee: £60
Manage your money with an easy-to-use Moneybox app. Capital at risk.

Compare up to 4 providers

All investing should be regarded as longer term. The value of your investments can go up and down, and you may get back less than you invest. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. If you’re not sure which investments are right for you, please seek out a financial adviser. Capital at risk.

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