StockBrokers.com is committed to the highest ethical standards and reviews services independently. Learn how we make money.

Firstrade vs TradeStation 2023

StockBrokers.com

Written by StockBrokers.com

January 23, 2023

Is Firstrade better than TradeStation? After testing 17 of the best online brokers over three months, Firstrade (87.80%) is better than TradeStation (78.24%). Firstrade scored well in our 2023 Annual Review for ease of use, and is a great choice for Chinese-speaking investors. However, it lags behind the competition in certain areas, especially platforms, tools and education.

Select Brokers×
Overall RatingFirstradeTradeStation
Overall 4.5/5 Stars 4/5 Stars
Commissions & Fees 4.5/5 Stars 4.5/5 Stars
Investment Options 4.5/5 Stars 4.5/5 Stars
Platforms & Tools 3.5/5 Stars 4.5/5 Stars
Mobile Trading Apps 4.5/5 Stars 4.5/5 Stars
Research 4.5/5 Stars 3/5 Stars
Customer Service 3.0/5 Stars 3.5/5 Stars
Education 3.5/5 Stars 3.5/5 Stars
Ease Of Use 4.5/5 Stars 3/5 Stars
Winner check_circle
Review Firstrade Review TradeStation Review
Trading FeesFirstradeTradeStation
Minimum Deposit $0.00 $0.00
Stock Trades $0.00 $0.00
Penny Stock Fees (OTCCB) $0.00 $0.00
Mutual Fund Trade Fee $0 $14.95
Options (Base Fee) $0.00 $0.00
Options (Per Contract) $0.00 $0.60
Futures (Per Contract) N/A $1.50
Broker Assisted Trade Fee $19.95 $0
Margin RatesFirstradeTradeStation
Margin Rate Under $25,000 11.50% 11.00%
Margin Rate $25,000 to $49,999.99 11.30% 11.00%
Margin Rate $50,000 to $99,999.99 10.80% 10.00%
Margin Rate $100,000 to $249,999.99 10.30% 10.00%
Margin Rate $250,000 to $499,999.99 10.00% 10.00%
Margin Rate $500,000 to $999,999.99 8.10% 5.50%
Margin Rate Above $1,000,000 7.50% 5.50%
Account FeesFirstradeTradeStation
IRA Annual Fee $0.00 $35.00
IRA Closure Fee $0.00 $50.00
Account Transfer Out (Partial) $55.00 $125.00
Account Transfer Out (Full) $75.00 $125.00
Options Exercise Fee $0.00 $14.95
Options Assignment Fee $0.00 $5.95
Investment OptionsFirstradeTradeStation
Stock Trading Yes Yes
Margin Trading Yes Yes
Fractional Shares No No
OTCBB / Pink Sheets Yes Yes
Options Trading Yes Yes
Complex Options Max Legs 4 4
Futures Trading No Yes
Forex Trading No No
Crypto Trading Yes Yes
Crypto Trading - Total Coins 38 11
Mutual Funds (No Load) 13777 800
Mutual Funds (Total) 19027 4000
Bonds (US Treasury) Yes Yes
Bonds (Corporate) Yes Yes
Bonds (Municipal) Yes Yes
Advisor Services No No
International Countries (Stocks) 0 0
Order TypesFirstradeTradeStation
Order Type - Market Yes Yes
Order Type - Limit Yes Yes
Order Type - After Hours Yes Yes
Order Type - Stop Yes Yes
Order Type - Trailing Stop Yes Yes
Order Type - OCO Yes Yes
Order Type - OTO Yes Yes
Order Type - Broker Assisted Yes Yes
BeginnersFirstradeTradeStation
Education (Stocks) Yes Yes
Education (ETFs) No No
Education (Options) Yes Yes
Education (Mutual Funds) No No
Education (Bonds) No No
Education (Retirement) Yes No
Retirement Calculator Yes No
Investor Dictionary Yes No
Paper Trading No Yes
Videos Yes Yes
Webinars Yes Yes
Webinars (Archived) Yes No
Progress Tracking No No
Interactive Learning - Quizzes No No
Stock Trading AppsFirstradeTradeStation
iPhone App Yes Yes
Android App Yes Yes
Apple Watch App No Yes
Trading - Stocks Yes Yes
Trading - After-Hours Yes Yes
Trading - Simple Options Yes Yes
Trading - Complex Options Yes Yes
Order Ticket RT Quotes Yes Yes
Order Ticket SRT Quotes Yes Yes
Stock App FeaturesFirstradeTradeStation
Market Movers (Top Gainers) Yes Yes
Stream Live TV No No
Videos on Demand No No
Stock Alerts Yes Yes
Option Chains Viewable Yes Yes
Watch List (Real-time) Yes Yes
Watch List (Streaming) Yes Yes
Watch Lists - Create & Manage Yes Yes
Watch Lists - Column Customization Yes Yes
Watch Lists - Total Fields 50 335
Stock App ChartingFirstradeTradeStation
Charting - After-Hours No Yes
Charting - Can Turn Horizontally Yes Yes
Charting - Multiple Time Frames Yes Yes
Charting - Technical Studies 81 45
Charting - Study Customizations Yes Yes
Charting - Stock Comparisons No No
Trading PlatformsFirstradeTradeStation
Active Trading Platform Firstrade Navigator TradeStation 10
Desktop Trading Platform No Yes
Desktop Platform (Mac) No No
Web Trading Platform Yes Yes
Paper Trading No Yes
Trade Journal No No
Watch Lists - Total Fields 50 335
Stock Chart FeaturesFirstradeTradeStation
Charting - Adjust Trades on Chart No Yes
Charting - Indicators / Studies 102 290
Charting - Drawing Tools 8 23
Charting - Notes No Yes
Charting - Index Overlays Yes Yes
Charting - Historical Trades No Yes
Charting - Corporate Events Yes Yes
Charting - Custom Date Range No Yes
Charting - Custom Time Bars No Yes
Charting - Automated Analysis No Yes
Charting - Save Profiles No Yes
Trade Ideas - Technical Analysis No Yes
Charting - Study Customizations 6 12
Charting - Custom Studies No Yes
Day TradingFirstradeTradeStation
Streaming Time & Sales No Yes
Streaming TV No No
Direct Market Routing - Stocks No Yes
Ladder Trading No Yes
Trade Hot Keys No Yes
Level 2 Quotes - Stocks No Yes
Trade Ideas - Backtesting No Yes
Trade Ideas - Backtesting Adv No Yes
Short Locator No Yes
Order Liquidity Rebates No Yes
Research OverviewFirstradeTradeStation
Research - Stocks Yes Yes
Research - ETFs Yes Yes
Research - Mutual Funds Yes No
Research - Pink Sheets / OTCBB Yes Yes
Research - Bonds Yes No
Screener - Stocks Yes Yes
Screener - ETFs Yes No
Screener - Mutual Funds Yes No
Screener - Bonds Yes No
Misc - Portfolio Allocation Yes Yes
Stock ResearchFirstradeTradeStation
Stock Research - PDF Reports 1 0
Stock Research - Earnings Yes No
Stock Research - Insiders Yes No
Stock Research - Social No No
Stock Research - News Yes Yes
Stock Research - ESG No No
Stock Research - SEC Filings Yes No
ETF ResearchFirstradeTradeStation
ETFs - Strategy Overview Yes No
ETF Fund Facts - Inception Date Yes No
ETF Fund Facts - Expense Ratio Yes No
ETF Fund Facts - Net Assets Yes No
ETF Fund Facts - Total Holdings Yes No
ETFs - Top 10 Holdings Yes No
ETFs - Sector Exposure Yes No
ETFs - Risk Analysis Yes No
ETFs - Ratings Yes No
ETFs - Morningstar StyleMap Yes No
ETFs - PDF Reports Yes No
Mutual Fund ResearchFirstradeTradeStation
Mutual Funds - Strategy Overview Yes No
Mutual Funds - Performance Chart Yes No
Mutual Funds - Performance Analysis Yes No
Mutual Funds - Prospectus Yes No
Mutual Funds - 3rd Party Ratings Yes No
Mutual Funds - Fees Breakdown Yes No
Mutual Funds - Top 10 Holdings Yes No
Mutual Funds - Asset Allocation Yes No
Mutual Funds - Sector Allocation Yes No
Mutual Funds - Country Allocation Yes No
Mutual Funds - StyleMap Yes No
Options TradingFirstradeTradeStation
Option Chains - Basic View Yes Yes
Option Chains - Strategy View Yes Yes
Option Chains - Streaming No Yes
Option Chains - Total Columns 8 32
Option Chains - Greeks 5 5
Option Chains - Quick Analysis No Yes
Option Analysis - P&L Charts Yes Yes
Option Probability Analysis No Yes
Option Probability Analysis Adv Yes Yes
Option Positions - Greeks No Yes
Option Positions - Greeks Streaming No Yes
Option Positions - Adv Analysis No Yes
Option Positions - Rolling Yes Yes
Option Positions - Grouping No Yes
BankingFirstradeTradeStation
Bank (Member FDIC) No No
Checking Accounts Yes No
Savings Accounts No No
Credit Cards No No
Debit Cards Yes No
Mortgage Loans No No
Customer ServiceFirstradeTradeStation
Phone Support (Prospect Customers) Yes Yes
Phone Support (Current Customers) Yes No
Email Support Yes Yes
Live Chat (Prospect Customers) Yes Yes
Live Chat (Current Customers) Yes Yes
24/7 Support No No
OverallFirstradeTradeStation
Overall 4.5/5 Stars 4/5 Stars
Commissions & Fees 4.5/5 Stars 4.5/5 Stars
Investment Options 4.5/5 Stars 4.5/5 Stars
Platforms & Tools 3.5/5 Stars 4.5/5 Stars
Mobile Trading Apps 4.5/5 Stars 4.5/5 Stars
Research 4.5/5 Stars 3/5 Stars
Education 3.5/5 Stars 3.5/5 Stars
Ease Of Use 4.5/5 Stars 3/5 Stars
Winner check_circle
Review Firstrade Review TradeStation Review
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxAlly Invest
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxCharles Schwab
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxE*TRADE
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxeToro
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxFidelity
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxFirstrade
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxInteractive Brokers
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxJ.P. Morgan Self-Directed Investing
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxMerrill Edge
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxRobinhood
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxSofi Invest
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxtastyworks
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxTD Ameritrade
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxTradeStation
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxTradier
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxVanguard
  • check_box_outline_blankcheck_boxWebull
Compare 0 of 5
arrow_upward

Firstrade vs TradeStation Comparison

Comparing brokers side by side is no easy task. For our 2023 annual broker review, we spent hundreds of hours assessing 17 brokerages to find the best online broker. Let's compare Firstrade vs TradeStation.

Is Firstrade or TradeStation better for beginners?

TradeStation offers more comprehensive new investor education for beginner investors than Firstrade. Firstrade offers investors access to Videos, Education (Stocks), Education (Options) and Education (Retirement), while TradeStation offers investors access to Paper Trading, Videos, Education (Stocks) and Education (Options), neither have Education (ETFs), Education (Mutual Funds) and Education (Bonds).

What about Firstrade vs TradeStation pricing?

Firstrade and TradeStation charge the same amount for regular stock trades, $0.00. Option contracts are pricier at TradeStation, costing $0.60 per contract versus $0.00 per contract at Firstrade. For a complete commissions summary, see our best brokers for free stock trading guide.

Does Firstrade or TradeStation offer a wider range of investment options?

Firstrade offers investors access to Stock Trading, Options Trading, OTCBB / Pink Sheets and Mutual Funds, while TradeStation offers investors access to Stock Trading, Options Trading, OTCBB / Pink Sheets, Mutual Funds and Futures Trading, neither have Fractional Shares, Forex Trading and Advisor Services. Looking at Mutual Funds, TradeStation trails Firstrade in its offering of no transaction fee (NTF) mutual funds, with Firstrade offering 3767 and TradeStation offering 0.

Which trading platform is better: Firstrade or TradeStation?

To compare the trading platforms of Firstrade and TradeStation, we tested each broker's trading tools, research capabilities, and mobile apps. For trading tools, TradeStation offers a better experience. With research, Firstrade offers superior market research. Finally, we found TradeStation to provide better mobile trading apps.

Does either broker offer banking?

Online banking can be a benefit for investors, and some brokerages do provide banking services to customers. Checking Accounts and Debit Cards are offered by Firstrade while TradeStation offers none, neither have Savings Accounts, Credit Cards and Mortgage Loans.

Is Firstrade good?

Firstrade scored well in our 2023 Annual Review for ease of use, and is a great choice for Chinese-speaking investors. However, it lags behind the competition in certain areas, especially platforms, tools and education.

Is TradeStation good?

TradeStation supports casual traders through its web-based platform and active traders through its desktop platform. We like the web-based platform and mobile app, but the flagship desktop platform could use a refresh. TradeStation ranked among Best in Class in the Commissions and Fees and Investment Options categories in our 2023 Annual Review of online stockbrokers.

Firstrade vs TradeStation Winner

Overall winner: Firstrade

Read Next

Explore our other online trading guides:


Was this helpful?
Yes or No

close