Interactive Brokers Review 2023: Pros, Cons and How It Compares

interactive brokers review

An options strategy lab lets you create and submit both simple and complex multileg options orders and compare up to five options strategies at one time. Over 4,000 U.S. no-transaction-fee mutual funds and over 14,000 offshore no-transaction-fee mutual funds. This may influence which products we review and write about (and where those products appear on the site), but it in no way affects our recommendations or advice, which are grounded in thousands of hours of research. Our partners cannot pay us to guarantee favorable reviews of their products or services. Interactive Brokers is neither one of the cheapest nor one of the most expensive products on the market.

They also offer fractional share trading, where you can buy less than a full share of stock depending on your budget. One place where they stood out in particular was the wide range of international investment opportunities as Interactive Brokers gives access to markets in 33 countries. Their other account fees are also minimal, such as a very low $10 fee for outgoing wires. There also may be inactivity fees for low-balance accounts that remain dormant for too long. They do not charge many of the other common fees like for security reorganization or mutual fund redemption that you may see at other brokers.

Customers can choose from a wide selection of offerings, such as stocks, precious metals, warrants and more. Users also have access to many news services and research providers for free, including Fundamentals Explorer, as well as paid options. This is the second time writing a review and again the same thing. The last time my proof of address got rejected three times even though it was a valid rent contract.

To open an online brokerage account, all you have to do is visit a broker’s website. Each firm has its own account opening process, which can be completed completely online—though you may need to upload certain documents, such as a photo of a driver’s license. Once you create an account, you can fund your account by transferring money directly from your bank account via an ACH or wire transfer. Some online brokerage firms have account minimums that range from several hundred to several thousand dollars. However, the top online brokers that we’ve listed here allow users to open an account with no minimum balance required.

Bankrate principal writer James F. Royal, Ph.D., covers investing and wealth management. His work has been cited by CNBC, the Washington Post, The New York Times and more. We use dedicated people and clever technology to safeguard our platform. Labeled Verified, they’re about genuine experiences.Learn more about other kinds of reviews. You can invest/trade ETFs from the broker’s Trader WorkStation (TWS). Look no further than our evaluation of the Interactive Brokers account opening.

Stock research features

Schwab’s chat support with a human operator answered almost immediately, a rare luxury. The Charles Schwab website is easy to navigate, and support features are displayed front and center, rather than tucked away in an obscure corner as is the case with many brokers. also recognized brokers that demonstrated excellence and innovation with our exclusive Industry Awards.

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The most popular include advanced analysis tools and features, automated trading and algorithms and robo-advisors. The Interactive Brokers robo-advisor, for instance, presents traders with the option to choose from over 68 portfolios options. Our interactive brokers review team observes that the broker supports over 24 different forex trading pairs. Any of their clients can trade these currencies with the help of the interactive broker’s FXTrade tool that’s integrated into the discount broker’s Trader Working Station (TWS). On this platform, spreads for major currencies start from 1.0 pips.

What fees does Interactive Brokers charge?

Options, futures, forex and fund trading are also available, and most traders won’t pay a commission on any purchase or sale. Sophisticated individual investors and professional investors will be hard-pressed to find a more comprehensive platform. IBKR stands out with a massive array of tradable assets, several computer and mobile trading apps, low costs, efficient order routing, and a global marketplace. The online curriculum and daily webinars provide multiple options for the intermediate investor to continue learning. IBKR Lite is appropriate for average investors willing to forgo the SmartRouting trade routing order feature.

The brokerages also share the $0 minimum requirement for self-directed brokerage accounts, but fees vary for different account types. New investors seeking a good stock broker for beginners may be put off by all the moving parts of its desktop platform. Even the basics can be overwhelming since the platform is built to offer access to so many different markets.

  • Our Interactive Brokers review observes that the discount broker maintains one of the biggest lists of tradable mutual funds.
  • However, there is a $2,000 minimum if you would like to trade on margin (or sell short).
  • Of course, the broker offers the usual candidates – stocks, bonds, ETFs, mutual funds and options – but it goes even further.
  • The investment information provided on this page is for informational and general educational purposes only and should not be construed as investment or financial advice.
  • Bankrate does not offer advisory or brokerage services, nor does it provide individualized recommendations or personalized investment advice.

We also compared Interactive Brokers’s fees with those of two similar brokers we selected, Saxo Bank and DEGIRO. This selection is based on objective factors such as products offered, client profile, fee structure, etc. Many of the brokers we reviewed also gave us live demonstrations of their platforms and services, either at their New York City offices or via video conferencing methods. Live brokerage accounts were also obtained for most of the platforms we reviewed, which our team of expert writers and editors used to perform hands-on testing in order to lend their qualitative point of view. IBKR offers security protocols for your account, personal information, and data that surpass most industry standards.

Interactive Brokers requires a $500 minimum balance for PDF reports from third party providers. Interactive Brokers was the clear winner in our study in terms of range of offerings. They offered nearly every type of investment we were looking for as part of our research.

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However, the size and complexity of IBKR’s services also lead to some drawbacks. Account opening is long and tedious, platforms may be too complex for beginner traders, and customer service can be busy. For a more streamlined experience, check out the IBKR GlobalTrader app to trade stocks, options and crypto at similar fees. Last but not least, the GlobalTrader app is a boon for international investors who are looking for mobile access to markets. New features and products are regularly added to the IBKR trading platforms, with additional funds regularly added to the massive number of U.S. and international mutual funds. IBKR is a superb platform for advanced and professional traders looking for a massive selection of order types to execute sophisticated trading strategies across assets and markets.

The firm provides a simplified approach to brokerage services that focuses on broad market access, low prices, and outstanding transaction execution. Clients from over 200 countries and territories can invest in global exchange markets in the Americas, Europe, and the Asia Pacific. Interactive Brokers and Fidelity Investments both let you place commission-free trades on multiple investment types.

IBKR did not rank in our top picks for beginners for 2023, as its Trader Workstation platform, though outstanding, has a steep learning curve. However, IBKR does offer certain beginner-friendly features, including fractional shares and paper trading. The Global Trader and Impact mobile apps are beginner-friendly, and the IBKR Mobile app is also quite good.

The company offers two trading plans, the IBKR Lite, which includes $0 commissions on U.S. stocks and ETF trades, and IBKR Pro, which includes access to the company’s SmartRouting system for a fee. The company allows domestic and international trading on its online platform or mobile app. Interactive Brokers (IBKR) leads the list of the most comprehensive investment platforms.

interactive brokers review

The website could be friendlier and the customer service by chat is not as effective, but by call, it has never failed me. Online investing requires you place orders online to buy and sell securities instead of directly with a broker by t phone. You buys and sell the same security in a short period of time (often the same day) to profit from small movements in the price. IBKR offers U.S. traders who hold USD as their base currency the ability to trade 23 of the most commonly-held currencies. Like most forex brokers, IBKR charges a small percentage of your trade value in the form of a spread. Our interactive broker’s review shows no sign of current or recent IB trader account promotions or offers.

  • For seasoned traders and professionals, TWS includes everything necessary to be productive, such as scanning and back-testing.
  • Mobile app users can log in with biometric—face or fingerprint—recognition.
  • To learn about IB’s new mobile app called IBKR GlobalTrader, launched in early 2022, read our separate review.
  • The redesigned Fundamentals Explorer is available on all IBKR trading platforms.

The mobile app remains an attractive place for options traders but is a no-go for those looking for mutual funds or a wide range of account types. Interactive Brokers’ web-based platform is geared towards everyday retail traders, whereas the desktop platform is complex, and challenging to use and customize – even for professionals. Meanwhile, because it targets professional and institutional investors, IBKR Pro charges commissions, offering both fixed and tiered pricing options. Under the fixed pricing system, you owe $0.005 per share for stock trades, with a minimum fee of $1 and maximum of 1% of the total trade value. Those making a large volume of trades per month could switch to the firm’s tiered pricing system, where the fee decreases as your total trading volume gets larger.

In addition, you want an absence of gamification tactics that promote excessive trading. Many beneficial features are available to traders via Interactive Brokers. A diverse choice of stocks, mutual funds, bonds, and other financial products are available for trading on the platform. IBKR Lite is geared at novice and retail investors, while IBKR Pro is aimed at more sophisticated traders. You can now invest in fractional shares trading in European stocks and ETFs.

So, it doesn’t matter if you are a beginner with a small account or a professional- the broker’s fees are among the lowest in the industry. In addition to screeners, the news and educational resources can inspire traders with new ideas. As parameters are customized, clients will uncover trades, specific to their preferred asset classes. Additionally, IBKR customers can use Capitalise, IBKR Market Signals, Benzinga, and Refinitiv Significant Developments for idea generators. For more ideas, the “Top Lists,” accessible from the research portal, list the most popular assets in a range of geographic regions and asset classes.

As such we may earn a commision when you make a purchase after following a link from our website. Interactive Brokers is a reliable firm and extremely safe when it comes to depositing your money. Interactive brokers is a highly regulated discount broker at both the local and international level.

Customers can also purchase fractional shares to buy only a portion of a company’s stock instead of its full-priced share. This includes equities, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), mutual funds, bonds, options, futures, foreign currency and more. Depending on availability and legal restrictions, you can trade these assets not only on U.S. markets but on more than 100 different markets worldwide.

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Interactive Brokers has the dubious distinction of being the only major online broker that lets you buy fractional shares but doesn’t allow you to reinvest your dividend that way. So it’s better than brokers allowing only reinvestment, but not quite as good as those doing both — a small point. Interactive Brokers offers so many other account types, including the other key retirement accounts, that these missing types are not a dealbreaker for most people. If you’re looking for a few of the more specialized retirement account types, Interactive Brokers may not be for you. Besides these traditional choices, Interactive Brokers introduced in 2022 what it calls event trading, which is binary options betting on whether specific events occur in a set time frame. Essentially, you bet on how a futures contract on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange will perform by the end of the day on a “yes-no” question, such as “Will Security X close above $10?

They also do not currently offer cryptocurrencies but plan to by the end of the summer. Still, these are both minor downsides and the range of offerings is a strong point for Interactive Brokers. For additional trading support, Interactive Brokers offers an AI tool called IBot that can answer questions or execute interactive brokers review certain tasks. It also uses a predictive algorithm to suggest natural next steps, like asking if you want to make a trade after your initial question. NerdWallet’s comprehensive review process evaluates and ranks the largest U.S. brokers by assets under management, along with emerging industry players.

The company’s mobile app is an on-the-go version of its Trader Workstation, sporting a slew of features like trading shortcuts, order presets and more. There are more than 8,300 funds with no transaction fees, and customers can earn income through the Stock Yield Enhancement Program by lending fully held shares to other traders. Interactive Brokers is among the largest brokerage firms in the world in terms of the average traded volumes on its platforms. One of the reasons is the low brokerage, and this could be because they intend to make trading affordable to all. The broker charges three types of fees- Fixed-rate, tiered and commission-free.

Interactive Brokers gives all its clients access to an unlimited number of stocks traded in more than 120 markets in and outside the U.S. Both the casual and advanced traders have equal access to these markets but casual traders using the IBKR Lite trading platform have the advantage of trading U.S based stocks and ETFs commission-free. On the other hand, stocks on the IBKR Pro trading platform start trading at the rate of $0.005 per share with a minimum $1 commission fee and a maximum of 0.5% the trade value. The IBKR mobile app has all the features you need, including trading tools that you may carry around in your pocket.

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