At a first glance, you will be overwhelmed by the entire Zack’s catalog of research and data merged into a single platform.
Who's it for?
The good news is that you can make it as complicated, or as simple as you want. ZacksTrade Pro mimics the increasingly popular “workstation” style, where one can build out customized workstations based on what the investor wants to see on screen. All in all, your mother or grandmother might not think of this as the most intuitive platform, so it will most likely attract the attention of tech-savvy and experienced investors.
If you’re an experienced trader, you may find that ZacksTrade Pro seems familiar. That’s no coincidence; ZacksTrade Pro is exactly the same platform as Interactive Brokers’s. This is not a bad thing – we see it with many new trading platforms. You can take advantage of ZacksTrade Pro’s deals while using an Interactive Brokers-style platform – a win for the customer.
Zacks Trade offers the following:
Not for beginners
First off, beginners would be wise to search for brokers who do not require a minimum balance. Zacks Trade mandates that you open an account with at least $2,500.
Although the platform does a superb job at explaining the origin of certain metrics, it does not provide an intuitive way for beginners to trade stocks. Beginners need to understand the basics of terms before they apply them. The platform has hundreds of bells and whistles that are fantastic for analytical purposes, but not necessarily optimal for learning.
For advanced traders
Getting past the visual appearance of the platform, itself, will be your biggest challenge. Experienced investors and traders will adore the trading platform for its analytical abilities and features, as well as the ability to buy on margin at a rate of 5.41%.
If you have a balance above $100,000 you are eligible to borrow at a lower rate of 4.91%. For balances above $1,000,000, you can borrow at an even lower rate of 4.5%.
Tiered margin rates
|Zacks Trade margin rates||Tier 1||Tier 2||Tier 3|
|Balance||Up to $100,000||Up to $1,000,000||Up to $3,000,000|
Watch lists and most intricate pop-out widgets such as market scanners, often have the ability to export its data into an Excel spreadsheet. Any investor should treasure the immense amount of consistent data this platform contains from ETF scanners, bond scanners, and detailed macroeconomic event calendars, to a multitude of fundamental tools and metrics on just about any public company in the world.
Company profiles are super easy to read and analyze while providing the option to dive deeper into capital expenditures, cash flow, revenue, EBITDA, and more.
Under the Information Systems vertical, platform users can find company news, calendar events, valuation metrics, ownership, ratios, financial statements, and so much more.
The only thing I dislike about this section is the fact that users have to pay a per month premium in the range of $5-$750, depending on which resource you want access to. Options consist of detailed analyst ratings from investment banks such as Goldman Sachs, KEYBANC, Needham and Company, Piper Jaffray, Oppenheimer, and many more.
‘Here is a layout of the basic workstation with new window options to add to your workstation. For a complete breakdown of the fees for different resources make sure to check out Zacks Trade’s full pricing guide, updated June 2018.
Commissions and fees
Every investor should be to conducting their due diligence by first understanding a broker’s fee structure. Although the fee structure at Zacks Trade is rather complex, it is drawn up in an easy-to-understand way.
Starting with a $3 minimum per trade, investors can hardly deny that this beats out every major brokerage.
Find the fees & commissions structure below:
|Stocks & ETFs
(Greater than $1 per share)
|$0.01 per share
|Stocks & ETFs
(Less than $1 per share)
|1% of trade value
|Options||$3 for first contract
$0.75 per additional contract
|Options exercise/assignment fee||Free|
|Broker-assisted trades||No extra charge|
|Currency conversion to USD||$2.00-$2.50 estimate|
Surprisingly enough, there aren’t many other additional fees. There are not any fees associated with setting up your account or maintenance fees.
There are also not any order cancellation fees, account inactivity fees, or IRA custodial fees. In fact, the only other additional fees while using the platform are withdrawal fees. Investors are allowed one withdrawal from their account every month, with every withdrawal after that raking in a $1.00 fee. Subsequent withdrawals are subject to a $4.00 fee for a check and $10.00 for a wire transfer.
ZacksTrade Pro has some pretty cool free tools. It brings you the options strategy builder. Forget the days of having to contact your best friend who’s a broker or reading an endless amount of books just to have an idea on how to trade. Whether you like to trade using a straddle or strangle strategy, the strategy building tool will automate and execute on it for you.
The platform even has a trading bot programmed with keyboard shortcuts. You can get your real-time account summary by simply pressing CTRL+3 and can view dividends in your portfolio and watchlist by clicking CTRL+0. Almost anything that traders will want to quickly glance at are included in the trading bot, including net liquidation value and a profit and loss statement.
More impressively, the portfolio builder is brilliant for people who understand trading and financial concepts, but do not understand portfolio management. This innovative feature lets you build a portfolio based on security performance, sector, and basic investment rules. The tool will even automatically notify you when your portfolio needs rebalancing, will allow you to effortlessly manage investments across several desired strategies, and give you an industry breakdown of your strategy against just about any benchmark of your choice.
My favorite aspect of the ZacksTrade Pro platform is, without a doubt, the What-If analysis pop out tool. This widget takes your portfolio and gives you the option to report risk by industry, position, country, and underlying assets. The tool even creates a chart that explains the relationship between the implied volatility in your portfolio, based on the analysis, relative to the value change in your portfolio.
Who doesn’t love convenience form their phones? The Zacks Trade team lets you connect to your account via their app, Handy Trader, accessible on the App Store and Google Play Store. Investors can monitor their account, receive alerts and notifications, and trade.
Drawbacks of the platform
Some things I found frustrating within the trading platform was the speed in certain areas and its visual display. This reverts back to the beginning of this review in the sense of being solely for advanced traders. I imagine a beginner would be very overwhelmed once he or she opened up the ‘New Window’ tab as they tried to customize their workstation.
With consistent data, outstanding research tools, and cutting-edge encryption to secure trades, there’s not much bad to say about Zacks Trade or the platform, ZacksTradePro.
The online broker gives investors the flexibility to trade stocks, bonds, and more using their efficient price execution method. Truthfully, if done as they claim, this can help traders save with every single trade. Buying on margin has never been so cheap with the possibility of borrowing with 4.2% APR. Use the “paper trading” option to get used to it first.