Whether you’re a passive investor looking to build a strong long-term portfolio or an active trader looking to generate consistent returns on strategic short- or medium-term trades, a well-designed stock trading app can make the process simpler and more convenient. But with dozens of options out there, each offering a dizzying array of features and resources, how do you pick the right stock trading apps?
In this quick guide, we’ll talk about what a stock trading app can do for your investing career and go over some of the unique features of the best stock trading apps on the market today — and what kind of investor they each work best for.
The Best Stock Trading Apps
- Best for Beginners: Robinhood
- Best for Intermediate Traders and Investors: Webull
- Best for Mobile Users: Plus500
- Best for Active and Global Traders: Interactive Brokers
- Best for Long Term Investors: Magnifi
- Best for Investors Who Maintain Significant Margin Balances: TradeUP
- Best for Copy Trading: eToro
- Best for Active Traders: Moomoo
- Best for IPO Investing: SoFi Active Invest
- Best for Fund Investing: Charles Schwab
- Best for Short Selling over $25K: Cobra Investing
- Best for Risk Managers: Seasonax
- Best for Saving, Spending & Investing: Fierce
13 Best Stock Trading Apps
Few stock trading apps can offer all the possible perks of mobile investing in one plus, but these innovative options offer a robust mobile trading platform to every investor from beginners to professionals. Each comes with its own unique special features that are tailored to the kinds of investors the developers had in mind when designing them.
Here are some of our favorite stock trading apps along with a quick description of what they do and what kind of investing they’re best for. While these platforms are rated for their best attributes, you should also land on a platform that is most appropriate for your style, needs and goals.
1. Best for Beginners: Robinhood
Robinhood offers commission-free trading on stock trades, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), options, and some crypto. You can buy fractional shares, set customized alerts and get regular updates with the latest news headlines related to your investments.
This is a great option for beginners because the interface makes it easy to both start trading and learn the ropes of investing. It’s also a good option for those who want to start investing with less capital since its fractional shares make it easy to invest at any budget. However, those who are investing for their retirement will miss out on tax protections — Robinhood doesn’t yet offer IRA or other tax-deferred retirement accounts.
Even so, this is a simple place to learn how to manage a portfolio, how trading works and what to invest in. Plus, the immense amount of news and data that’s available will get beginners into the habit of researching their investments, completing a technical or fundamental analysis and thinking twice before buying or selling.
Moreover, the affordable setup of the platform makes it easy for new investors to “value invest” and hold certain assets instead of selling for quick cash.
- Works well for beginners
- Several asset options
- Easy to manage your portfolio
- Platform has halted trading in the past
2. Best for Intermediate Traders and Investors: Webull
Webull is another commission-free trading platform for stocks, ETFs, options, crypto and more. The depth of analytical tools like charts, graphs and indicators Webull offers make it function more like an advanced trading platform even though it’s built into a user-friendly platform designed with mobile-first investors in mind.
It’s a great option for short or medium-frequency strategies thanks to its low-cost trading and wealth of free charting and technical analysis tools at your fingertips. While investors with a basic understanding of how to use charts and indicators will be able to dive in immediately, there are enough educational resources and an intuitive enough design that beginners can find their way around after playing with the features for a while.
As you’re learning on Webull, you can step up from novice investing to intermediate concepts. Building your portfolio is easier with Webull's brokerage account because you won’t feel as though you’ve outgrown the platform in a few short months. Plus, there are more than enough features to keep you busy as you expand your investments and use new techniques to get the best results.
- Easy to manage your portfolio
- Commission-free trading
- Lots of educational tools
- Platform may not work for advanced traders
3. Best for Mobile Users: Plus500
Advanced traders will love Plus500 because it is designed for them and the complex derivatives like CFDs that they prefer. When you sign up with Plus500, you can invest in stock and index CFDs along with other assets. You can practice in a demo account if you’re new to the platform, and you will find that there all the information you would want for each new asset.
Yes, there may not be many educational tools for you, but that’s why advanced traders come here to diversify their portfolios. If you’re an expert investor who wants to get into CFDs or move your portfolio, this is the best place to go.
- This is a good place to practice trading if you need the time to learn
- Plus500 offers several types of CFD so that you don’t feel as though you’re hemmed into one type of investment
- Even if you understand CFDs very well, the ratio of losses to profits in this sector is low
- The site may let you practice, but there are no tools meant to teach you specifically how CFDs work
4. Best for Active and Global Traders: Interactive Brokers
Interactive Brokers is one of the leading options for investors who want access to a wide range of tradeable assets. The app offers stocks, options, futures, ETFs, mutual funds, forex, and even precious metals. Users also have access to foreign markets. With so many assets available, investors will have no trouble building up a diversified portfolio or enjoying a wide range of trading opportunities, no matter which asset they prefer to trade.
There are also several account types including a margin account and an IRA account and both a lite and pro plan type. The pro plan comes with more analytical tools essential for high frequency trading but comes with an inactivity fee charged if you don’t trade frequently enough. The lite plan has a few less analytical tools but no fees for inactivity so it’s better for passive investors or less frequent traders.
Professional traders can build their portfolios with IBKR, utilizing the company’s powerful tools and endless insight. If you plan to open an institutional account, you can do so with IBKR, allowing you to invest on behalf of your business. This is a great platform for financial planners, new brokers or small business owners who want to do more with their money. Plus, everything on the institutional side works just as it does on the individual side.
- Lots of assets to choose from
- Technical analysis tools
- No inactivity fees
- May not serve novices
5. Best for AI Investing: Magnifi
Magnifi is a marketplace that allows you, as the investor, to use common brokerage tools and AI to make the best decisions for your portfolio. Because you can pull up all the information you need on a given asset, you can easily invest in the assets that will give you the results you deserve and better match your strategy.
Search for the investment options that meet your needs, invest in specific categories or scan for assets in a price range that’s affordable for you.
Best for long-term investors and those who require a bit of client support, you can also learn more about investing from this platform, utilize the AI-powered investing assistant, enjoy commission-free investing, try the mobile app and take advantage of over 15,000 possible investment options. This makes Magnifi a good place to trade for both seasoned and novice traders.
- Over 15,000 investments to choose from
- Works well for all types of investors
- Easy to find information on assets
- AI investing may not work for you
6. Best for Investors Who Maintain Significant Margin Balances
TradeUP App, provided by TradeUP Securities, Inc., is a cutting-edge mobile trading platform that empowers investors to trade U.S. stocks, ETFs, and options without incurring any commission or contract fees. Additionally, the platform boasts an incredibly competitive flat margin interest rate of 1.99%, which remains advantageous, especially in the current high borrowing cost environment, outpacing competitors who might charge up to 10%.
As a part of their dedication to building a vibrant investor community, TradeUP extends attractive incentives for new investors, friend referrals and account transfers.
TradeUP boasts a user-friendly, multi-platform application that supports not only mobile apps, but also desktop versions (compatible with Windows and Mac download) and a web version. You will also enjoy:
- The Pro/Lite switch, which caters to a variety of experience levels
- An array of screeners, alerts and more
- Market news and data that streams in real-time
And, everything above comes to you free of charge.
TradeUP Securities, Inc. is a proud member of organizations like FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority), SIPC (Securities Investor Protection Corporation), OCC (Option Clearing Corporation), NYSE (New York Stock Exchange), CBOE (Chicago Board Options Exchange), and DTCC (Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation), reflecting the platform’s commitment to maintaining the highest standards and adherence to industry regulations.
- The streaming market news makes it far simpler to make wise decisions
- No commissions or contract fees, meaning that you can keep more cash in your pocket
- Limited investment options may prevent you from expanding your portfolio, especially if you are an advanced trader and constantly growing
7. Best for Demo Accounts: eToro
eToro is a platform well known for its crypto trading options along with forex trading. The platform also allows you to invest in stocks and ETFs and mix those assets with your current crypto holdings.
eToro’s platform makes it easy to invest by offering:
- Investing in full stocks and fractionals for as little as $10
- Engagement with real and experienced investors concerning strategies
- Detailed price charting and technical analysis
By investing with eToro, you can create a diverse portfolio that is easy to manage via the website or the mobile app. The amount of information available is powerful because you can see everything as soon as you visit the app. There is a list of movers that gives you an idea of where your best new opportunities are, and you can use the list of losers to determine if you should buy at the dip, sell or hold off until the stock bottoms out.
The colorful and modern design is engaging, easy to manage and simple to follow as you build your portfolio. Plus, you can use copy trading to align yourself with best practices if you want to get consistent results instead of making educated guesses every day.
- Invest with as little as $10
- Demo accounts
- Platform may overwhelm some investors
Disclaimer: Investors should be aware that 74% of retail investor accounts lose money.
8. Best for Active Traders: Moomoo
Moomoo offers its users commission-free trading on over 5,000 stocks and ETFs with free access to Level 2 market data. That data is paired with over 50 technical indicators and other tools that are ideal for active or advanced traders looking for lower costs and more advanced trading tools. The brokerage account is also protected by the SIPC.
The app works well for active traders who need to make quick decisions, get their orders in as fast as possible and review the indicators that match their strategies. This is especially important because active traders are playing the numbers every day and sticking to a plan they’ve already created.
The app also offers short selling on 8,000 stocks, including market sentiment graphing that helps you spot short opportunities. However, the app is light on educational resources so beginners are advised to use Moomoo’s paper trading service at first to learn the ropes before risking money on short-term trades. This is a good way to change strategies, test strategies or review how markets are moving if you plan to expand your portfolio.
- Short selling is available
- Commission-free trading on several assets
- Over 50 technical indicators
- May feel overwhelming for some investors
9. Best for IPO Investing: SoFi Active Invest
SoFi Active Invest is another good option for passive investing that’s tailored to investors who are starting with less capital. Users can open an account with no minimum and buy fractional shares, all while benefiting from free financial counseling from Sofi Active Invest’s team of expert financial advisors. It also offers some automation including automatic portfolio rebalancing, diversification, and recurring investments.
This is a really great resource for beginners and anyone interested in a more hands-off approach to investing that doesn’t require extensive research or fine-tuning a strategy. However, it is light on tradeable assets as it lacks mutual funds, options, and other assets that some investors might want, so make sure it offers the securities you’re interested in before you open an account.
Even so, this platform is a great place to gain access to IPOs. If you’re a new investor or planning on maintaining a fairly light portfolio, you can use SoFi to get into IPOs, hold them and watch their value grow. This might also be a good place to come for IPO access if you have a nice portfolio elsewhere but don’t want to shift everything over to SoFi.
- Easy to centralize your assets
- IPO access
- Easy to research investments
- May not work for advanced traders
10. Best for Fund Investing: Charles Schwab
Another trading app with a major bank behind it, Charles Schwab is the ideal app for a wide range of investors. It offers tons of educational resources, extensive fundamental and technical research tools, several account types, and several trading platforms, complete with real-time quotes, screeners, technical indicators, pattern analysis, and more.
However, not every tool and feature is built into every platform. If you’re planning to try out different investing styles, you’ll find yourself hopping from platform to platform. For investors committed to a single style of investing, this won’t be as big of an issue. More passive, buy-and-hold investors will find just about everything they need on TradeSource while active day or swing traders will have access to most of the tools they need on StreetSmart Edge.
Remember, though, that Charles Schwab has long positioned itself as the friendly, no-nonsense broker that makes your life as simple as possible. All the way back to the TV commercials of the 1980s, featuring Charles himself, Schwab has looked for safe ways to invest its clients’ money. This platform is great for fund investing because it gives you exposure to a massive range of funds that will offer powerful returns, security and safety even in down markets.
- Well established broker
- Several investment options
- Lots of information on assets
- Fees can add up
11. Best for Short Selling Over $25K: Cobra Trading
With low commissions and DAS fee waivers for high volume traders, the Cobra Trading app is tailored to day traders and scalpers. The DAS (Direct Access Software) platform offers faster order execution and access to multiple exclusive data feeds. With Cobra Trading, you’re able to connect your brokerage account directly to your DAS platform to enjoy high level analysis and rapid-speed trading all at once.
With an account minimum of $25,000 and fee waivers reserved only for high volume trading, Cobra Trading is definitely best suited to the high frequency, high volume trader. However, for those advanced high frequency traders, the DAS platform access, range of data packages, and short locate monitors make this one of the most robust day trading or scalping apps on the market.
Cobra Trading is also a great place for short selling because it offers flexibility for professional traders who might utilize these techniques. The site explains how short selling works—educating the average consumers—while also helping professional traders park their portfolios in a place where they can always get the best results.
- DAS access
- Fee waivers or high volume traders
- Short selling is available
- High minimums
12. Best for Risk Managers: Seasonax
Seasonal investing is an oft-overlooked technique that can bring diversity, vitality and value to your portfolio. However, it can be difficult to leverage all that data to determine when and if stocks or assets will rise or fall in value.
With Seasonax, you get:
- Access to seasonal trading signals for around 20,000 assets
- An easy-to-use dashboard
- Seasonal charts going back 125 years
- Customizable tools
- Newsletters, video tutorials
- Advanced filtering
- Detailed statistics
- Seasonality screener and more
After a 3-day trial, the subscription sits at just under $50 per month, allowing you access to all the data you need to become a seasonal trader and add layers of insight to your investment portfolio and overall net worth.
- Seasonal charts
- Historic data
- Lots of statistics
- Info may not suit novice traders
13. Best for Saving, Spending & Investing: Fierce
When you use Fierce, you might feel as though there’s nothing more than a free checking account, debit card and high-yield savings account. This is not the case. Fierce allows you to use the funds in your account to save, spend or invest. You can research the assets that interest you most, invest, wait for your returns and transfer them back to your checking or savings account at any time.
- Fierce helps you combine all your finances in one place
- You can easily transfer in and out to invest so that you’re not waiting for funding, which can be a sticking point for many investment apps
- You do not have an unlimited number of assets in which you can invest on this platform
Why Use Stock Trading Apps?
Stock trading apps keep your portfolio at your fingertips. You can check your investments and make trades, all from your phone. While different stock trading apps are built with different users in mind, some of the reasons investors look to a mobile stock trading app include:
- News feeds featuring the latest headlines related to your investments
- Educational resources to help beginners hone their investing skills
- Analytical tools like charts, graphs and indicators to help you plan your short or medium-term trades.
- Automation features so that your phone can do your trading for you
- Alerts that notify you of news, trends and price changes so that you can respond quickly to the market even if you can’t watch the charts all day
Start Investing with Your Favorite Stock Trading App Today
Ultimately, the best stock trading app for you is the one that’s built with the kind of investing you have in mind and that offers the kind of assets you want to trade. For shorter-term strategies like swing trading or day trading, look for tons of analytical tools and maybe some automation to make it easier to stick to your strategy. For longer-term strategies or retirement planning, look for an investing app that offers in-depth research options for digging into stock fundamentals, the kinds of equities you want to include in your portfolio, and maybe the option to open a retirement investing account.
Whichever stock trading app you choose, you can always come back to Benzinga for more helpful tips and insights as you take the next steps on your investing journey!
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best stock trading app for beginners?
Beginner investors should prioritize apps that offer lots of educational resources while making it simple to place orders (and understand the different kinds of orders you can place). Look for user-friendly interfaces, easy-to-understand tutorials or guides, and, above all, low fees so you’re not paying more than you have to while you learn the ropes.
What is the best app for trading stocks?
There really is no one best app for trading stocks. Each platform comes with its own set of perks and drawbacks. In the end, the best app is the one that you feel comfortable using and that offers the features that align with your strategy best—whether that means more technical analysis, more automation, or more fundamental research tools, or more low-cost trading offers like no-fee options trading or budget-friendly fractional shares. No app has everything. So the best one is the one that has the features that are most important to you.
Where can I find good trading apps?
You can find a list of good trading apps on the list above.