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TradeStation vs Firstrade 2020

Is Firstrade better than TradeStation? After testing 15 of the best online brokers over five months, TradeStation (82.4%) is better than Firstrade (76.33%). As a trading technology leader, TradeStation supports casual traders through its web-based platform and active traders through its award-winning desktop platform, all with $0 stock and ETF trades.

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Overall Rating

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Overall 4 4
Commissions & Fees 4.5 4.5
Offering of Investments 4.5 4
Platforms & Tools 5 2.5
Mobile Trading 4.5 3.5
Research 2 4
Education 2.5 3
Ease of Use 4 5
Banking 0.5 2
TradeStation Review Firstrade Review
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Trading Fees

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Minimum Deposit $0.00 $0.00
Stock Trade Fee (per trade) $0.00 $0.00
ETF Trade Fee $0.00 $0.00
Options Base Fee $0.00 $0.00
Options Per Contract Fee $0.50 $0.00
Mutual Fund Trade Fee $14.95 $0.00
Broker Assisted Trades Fee $50.00 $19.95

Margin Rates

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Under $24,999.99 9.50% 8.75%
$25,000.00 to $49,999.99 9.50% 8.25%
$50,000.00 to $99,999.99 8.75% 7.75%
$100,000.00 to $249,999.99 8.75% 7.25%
$250,000.00 to $499,999.99 8.75% 7.00%
$500,000.00 to $999,999.99 5.50% 5.10%
Above $1,000,000.00 5.50% 4.50%

Account Fees

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
IRA Annual Fee $35.00 $0.00
IRA Closure Fee $50.00 $0.00
Returned ACH Fee $25.00 $50.00
Returned Wire Fee $25.00 $50.00
Stock Certificate Processing Fee $150.00 $300.00
Stock Certificate Delivery Fee $15.00 $300.00
Paper Statement Fee $1.00 $5.00
Paper Confirmation Fee $1.00 $3.00
Domestic Wire Fee $25.00 $30.00
International Wire Fee $35.00 $50.00

Investment Options

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Stock Trading
Yes Yes
Fractional Shares
No No
OTCBB / Pink Sheets
Yes Yes
Options Trading
Yes Yes
Complex Options Max Legs
4 4
Futures Trading
Yes No
Forex Trading
No No
Crypto Trading Yes No
Mutual Funds (No Load)
887 11134
Mutual Funds (Total)
4357 18322
Bonds (US Treasury)
Yes Yes
Bonds (Corporate)
Yes Yes
Bonds (Municipal)
Yes Yes
Advisor Services
No No
International Trading
No No

Order Types

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Order Type - Market
Yes Yes
Order Type - Limit
Yes Yes
Order Type - Stop
Yes Yes
Order Type - Trailing Stop
Yes Yes
Order Type - Contingent
Yes No
Order Type - MultiContingent
Yes Yes
Order Type - OCO
Yes Yes
Order Type - OTO
Yes Yes
Order Type - OTOCO
Yes No

Trading Platforms

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Desktop Platform (Windows)
Yes No
Desktop Platform (Mac)
No No
Web Platform
Yes Yes
Paper Trading
Yes No
Trade Journal
No No
Watch Lists - Total Fields
335 47
Heat Mapping
No Yes
AI Assistant Bot
No No

Charting Features

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Charting - Trade Off Chart
Yes No
Charting - Indicators / Studies
290 102
Charting - Drawing Tools
23 8
Charting - Historical Trades
Yes No
Charting - Corporate Events
No Yes
Charting - Automated Analysis
No No
Charting - Save Profiles
Yes No
Charting - Study Customizations
12 6
Charting - Custom Studies
Yes No

Day Trading

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Stock Alerts - Basic Fields
Yes Yes
Stock Alerts - Advanced Fields
Yes No
Streaming Time & Sales
Yes No
Streaming TV
No No
Direct Market Routing - Stocks
Yes No
Direct Market Routing - Options
Yes No
Ladder Trading
Yes No
Trade Hot Keys
Yes No
Level 2 Quotes - Stocks
Yes No
Level 2 Quotes - Options
Yes No
Trade Ideas - Backtesting
Yes No
Short Locator
Yes No
Order Liquidity Rebates
Yes No

Mobile Trading Apps

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
iPhone App
Yes Yes
Android App
Yes Yes
Apple Watch App
No No
Trading - Stocks
Yes Yes
Trading - After-Hours
Yes Yes
Trading - Conditional Orders
Yes No
Trading - Mutual Funds
No No
Trading - Simple Options
Yes Yes
Trading - Complex Options
Yes Yes
Trading - Option Rolling
No No
Touch / Face ID
Yes Yes

Mobile App Features

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Watch List Syncing
Yes Yes
Stock Alerts
Yes No
Charting - After Hours
Yes No
Charting - Drawing
Yes No
Charting - Study Customizations
Yes Yes
Heatmapping
No No
Stream Live TV
No No
Barcode Lookup
No No

Research Overview

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Research - Stocks
Yes Yes
Research - ETFs
Yes Yes
Research - Mutual Funds
No Yes
Research - Pink Sheets / OTCBB
Yes Yes
Research - Fixed Income
No Yes
Screener - Stocks
Yes Yes
Screener - ETFs
No Yes
Screener - Mutual Funds
No Yes
Screener - Options
Yes No
Screener - Bonds
No Yes
Misc - Portfolio Builder
No No
Misc - Portfolio Allocation
No Yes

Stock Research

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Stock Research - Reports
0 1
Stock Research - Earnings
No Yes
Stock Research - Insiders
No Yes
Stock Research - Metric Comp
No Yes
Stock Research - SEC Filings
No Yes
Stock Research - Social
No No
Stock Research - Balance Sheet
No Yes
Stock Research - Cash Flows
No Yes
Stock Research - News
Yes Yes
Stock Research - ESG
No No

ETF Research

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
ETFs - Strategy Overview
No Yes
ETFs - Top 10 Holdings
No Yes
ETFs - Sector Exposure
No Yes
ETFs - Risk Analysis
No Yes
ETFs - Performance Analysis
No Yes
ETFs - Ratings
No Yes
ETFs - Morningstar StyleMap
No Yes
ETFs - Reports
No Yes

Mutual Fund Research

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Mutual Funds - Strategy Overview
No Yes
Mutual Funds - Prospectus
No Yes
Mutual Funds - Reports
No No
Mutual Funds - Fees Breakdown
No Yes
Mutual Funds - Top 10 Holdings
No Yes
Mutual Funds - Asset Allocation
No Yes
Mutual Funds - Sector Allocation
No Yes
Mutual Funds - Country Allocation
No Yes
Mutual Funds - StyleMap
No Yes
Mutual Funds - 3rd Party Ratings
No Yes

Options Trading

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Option Chains - Streaming
Yes No
Option Chains - Total Columns
32 8
Option Chains - Greeks
5 5
Option Chains - Quick Analysis
Yes No
Option Analysis - P&L Charts
Yes No
Option Probability Analysis
Yes No
Option Probability Analysis Adv
Yes No
Option Positions - Greeks
Yes No
Option Positions - Adv Analysis
Yes No
Option Positions - Rolling
Yes Yes
Option Positions - Grouping
Yes No

Beginners

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Education (Stocks)
Yes Yes
Education (ETFs)
No No
Education (Options)
Yes Yes
Education (Mutual Funds)
No No
Education (Fixed Income)
No No
Education (Retirement)
No Yes
Paper Trading
Yes No
Videos
Yes Yes
Webinars (Monthly Avg)
10 6
Webinars (Archived)
No Yes
Live Seminars
Yes No
Progress Tracking
No No
Interactive Learning - Quizzes
No No

Banking

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Retail Locations
0 1
Member FDIC
No No
Checking Accounts
No Yes
Savings Accounts
No No
Credit Cards
No No
Debit Cards
No Yes
Mortgage Loans
No No
No Fee Banking
No No

Overall

Feature TradeStation Firstrade
Overall 4 4
Commissions & Fees 4.5 4.5
Offering of Investments 4.5 4
Platforms & Tools 5 2.5
Mobile Trading 4.5 3.5
Research 2 4
Education 2.5 3
Ease of Use 4 5
Banking 0.5 2
TradeStation Review Firstrade Review
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Comparing brokers side by side is no easy task. For our 2020 annual broker review, we spent hundreds of hours assessing 15 brokerages to find the best online broker. Let's compare Firstrade vs TradeStation.

Is Firstrade or TradeStation better for beginners?
Firstrade is better for beginner investors than TradeStation. Firstrade offers investors access to Videos, Education (Stocks), Education (Options) and Education (Retirement).

What about Firstrade vs TradeStation pricing?
Firstrade and TradeStation both cost $0 per trade. For options trading, both Firstrade and TradeStation charge the same base fee of $0. Option contracts are pricier at TradeStation, costing $0.50 versus $0 at Firstrade. For a complete commissions summary, see our best discount brokers guide.

Does Firstrade or TradeStation offer a wider range of investment options?
TradeStation offers a more diverse selection of investment options than Firstrade. TradeStation offers investors access to Stock Trading, OTCBB / Pink Sheets, Options Trading, Mutual Funds and Futures Trading. Looking at Mutual Funds, Firstrade boasts an offering of 18322 mutual funds compared to TradeStation's 4357 available funds.

Which trading platform is better: Firstrade or TradeStation?
To compare the trading platforms of both 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. Clients can have Checking Accounts and Debit Cards at Firstrade while customers at TradeStation can have none of these.

Overall, between Firstrade and TradeStation, TradeStation is the better online broker.

Firstrade Review
TradeStation Review

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All pricing data was obtained from a published web site as of 01/20/2020 and is believed to be accurate, but is not guaranteed. For stock trade rates, advertised pricing is for a standard order size of 500 shares of stock priced at $30 per share. For options orders, an options regulatory fee per contract may apply.

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