Interactive Brokers vs TradeStation Comparison
Comparing brokers side by side is no easy task. We spend hundreds of hours each year testing the platforms, mobile apps, trading tools and general ease of use among online brokerages, as well as comparing commissions and fees, to find the best online broker.
Though many U.S. brokers offer basic trading features, such as an app, charting tools, stock research and educational content, the depth of those features can vary widely. Let's compare Interactive Brokers vs TradeStation.
Is Interactive Brokers or TradeStation better for beginners?
In stock trading, the more you know, the better you’ll do. Taking advantage of resources like articles, webinars, videos and interactive elements is a great way to shorten the learning curve. In our analysis, we examine the availability of several different types of educational materials.
For 2023, our review finds that Interactive Brokers offers more comprehensive new investor education for beginning investors than TradeStation. Interactive Brokers offers investors access to Paper Trading, Videos, Education (Stocks), Education (ETFs), Education (Options), Education (Mutual Funds), Education (Bonds) and Education (Retirement), while TradeStation offers investors access to Paper Trading, Videos, Education (Stocks) and Education (Options).
What about Interactive Brokers vs TradeStation pricing?
Interactive Brokers and TradeStation charge the same amount for regular stock trades, $0.00. Option contracts are pricier at Interactive Brokers, costing $0.65 per contract versus $0.60 per contract at TradeStation. For futures, TradeStation charges $1.50 per contract and Interactive Brokers charges $0.85 per contract. For a deeper dive, see our best brokers for free stock trading guide.
Does Interactive Brokers or TradeStation offer a wider range of investment options?
Looking at a full range of investment options, including order types and international trading, our research has found that Interactive Brokers offers a more comprehensive offering than TradeStation. Interactive Brokers ranks #N/A out of 18 brokers for our Investment Options category, while TradeStation ranks #5.
Interactive Brokers offers investors access to Stock Trading, Fractional Shares, Options Trading, OTC Stocks, Mutual Funds, Futures Trading and Forex Trading, while TradeStation offers investors access to Stock Trading, Options Trading, OTC Stocks, Mutual Funds and Futures Trading. Neither have Advisor Services Looking at Mutual Funds, TradeStation trails Interactive Brokers in its offering of no transaction fee (NTF) mutual funds, with Interactive Brokers offering 4782 and TradeStation offering 0.
Do Interactive Brokers and TradeStation offer cryptocurrency?
In our analysis of top U.S. brokerages, we research whether each broker offers the ability to trade cash cryptocurrency, such as bitcoin and ethereum. Though crypto has risen steadily in popularity, availability still varies from broker to broker. Our review finds that both Interactive Brokers and TradeStation offer crypto trading.
Which trading platform is better: Interactive Brokers or TradeStation?
To compare the day trading platforms of Interactive Brokers and TradeStation, we focused on trading tools and functionality across both web and desktop-based platforms. Popular day trading platform tools include streaming real-time quotes, stock alerts, trading hotkeys, direct market routing, streaming time and sales, customizable watch lists, backtesting, and fully functional charting packages, among many others. For day trading, Interactive Brokers offers a better experience.
Does Interactive Brokers or TradeStation offer a better stock trading app?
After testing 25 features across the stock trading apps of Interactive Brokers and TradeStation, we found Interactive Brokers to be better overall. The best stock market apps are easy to use, have excellent design, and deliver a fully featured online trading experience. Interactive Brokers ranks #N/A out of 18 brokers, while TradeStation ranks #8.
Interactive Brokers Trading App Gallery
TradeStation Trading App Gallery
Which broker is better for researching stocks?
For research, Interactive Brokers offers superior market research than TradeStation. Interactive Brokers ranks #2 and TradeStation ranks #10.
Over the years, we've found that the best brokers provide rich market commentary, a variety of third-party research reports, and thorough quote screens that are not just easy to navigate, but that also include a comprehensive selection of fundamental data. Robust stock, ETFs, and mutual fund screeners are also must-haves for trade idea generation.
How do Interactive Brokers and TradeStation compare in terms of minimum deposit required?
Interactive Brokers requires a minimum deposit of $0.00, while TradeStation requires a minimum deposit of $0.00. From our testing, we found that SoFi is the only broker that requires a minimum deposit.
Which broker offers better margin rates for accounts under $25,000?
Interactive Brokers charges 7.83% for accounts under $25,000 while TradeStation charges a margin rate of 13.5%. The industry average of the 18 brokers we track is 9%.
Does Interactive Brokers offer fractional shares? Does TradeStation?
Fractional shares are not offered by either broker. Our research has found that 41% of brokers offer fractional shares investing. Fractional shares allow traders to buy a part of a whole share of stock. For example, if Amazon is trading at $1,000, you could buy half a share for $500.
Can you trade penny stocks with Interactive Brokers or TradeStation?
Both Interactive Brokers and TradeStation allow you to trade penny stocks. Interactive Brokers charges $0.00 per trade while TradeStation charges $0.00. Penny stocks are companies whose shares trade for under $5 and are listed over the counter (OTC). For brokers that do offer penny stock trades, the average commission is $3.
Does either broker offer banking?
Online banking can be a benefit for investors, and some brokerages do provide banking services to customers. Debit Cards are offered by Interactive Brokers while TradeStation offers none. Neither have Checking Accounts, Savings Accounts, Credit Cards and Mortgage Loans.
Which broker offers stronger customer service?
StockBrokers.com partners with customer experience research group Confero to conduct phone tests from locations across the United States to thoroughly evaluate the quality and speed of brokerage customer service. (Read more about How We Test.) Here are the results of our current testing.
Interactive Brokers was rated 8th out of 14 brokers, with an overall score of 7.7 out of 10.
TradeStation was rated 10th out of 14 brokers, with an overall score of 7.5 out of 10.
Is Interactive Brokers good?
Interactive Brokers is a go-to choice for professionals because of its institutional-grade desktop trading platform, high-quality trade executions and rock-bottom margin rates.
In the 2023 StockBrokers.com Annual Review, Interactive Brokers was rated No. 1 for Investment Options, Active Trading and Futures Trading. It also ranked among Best in Class for Commissions & Fees, Research, Platforms & Tools, Mobile Trading Apps, Investment Options, and Options Trading. Interactive Brokers also won five StockBrokers.com Industry Awards: No. 1 for ESG Investing, International Trading, Platform Technology, Professional Trading, and Sentiment Investing.
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.
In the 2023 StockBrokers.com Annual Review, TradeStation ranked among Best in Class for Commission & Fees, Investment Options, Active Trading, Futures Trading, and Penny Stocks. TradeStation also won one StockBrokers.com Industry Award: No. 1 for Crypto Technology.
Interactive Brokers vs TradeStation Winner
Overall winner: Interactive Brokers
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