Generic Trade calls itself a “no bells, no whistles” broker, but that doesn’t mean it contains limited offerings. The company features trading for futures and options on futures. Research is limited, but customer support is available 24/7 and direct market access guarantees fast trades at optimal prices.
Generic Trade’s big selling point is its flat $0.59 commission on all trades. Better educational materials and platform varieties are available elsewhere but Generic Trade offers true bang for your buck — one of the most important variables when comparing brokers.
- Futures Traders
- Options Traders
- Low volume derivatives traders
- Flat $0.59 commission on all trades, regardless of account size or volume
- No minimum needed to open an account
- Exchange minimum margin and aggressive day trading margin
- Contracts available for most asset classes
- 24/7 tech support and customer service
- No volume discounts
- Must pay platform fee to use full suite of trading tech
- Even though the free Generic Trader Online offers real-time quotes and charts, they are not streaming and do not offer market depth. Also, the trading tools are not nearly as robust as the other platforms
Generic Trade Ratings at a Glance
Generic Trade doesn’t have premium services, a flashy website or a high-profile advisor team. You won’t be choosing from a half dozen platforms and you get a discount whether you do a ton of trades or not. Instead, Generic Trade makes a simple promise — fast trading with cheap commissions.
Don’t assume a broker is low-tech just because it’s simple. Generic Trade contains 3 different trading platforms and co-location at a CME Globex data center for rapid trade execution. In finance, simple is usually better than complex and Generic Trade puts that theory to the test.
Generic Trade is ideal for those who have a great deal of experience trading or are working with someone who does (such as trading schools, mentors, advisors, etc.)
Who’s Generic Trade for?
Generic Trade sees itself as a competitor to companies like Trade Station and Interactive Brokers — it offers a comparison page right on its website. Generic Trade appeals to traders who might not have the capital or volume to access the best features offered by Interactive Brokers and other high-tech trading firms. For example, Interactive Brokers has a $10,000 account minimum while Generic Trade has no account minimum at all.
As mentioned above, you won’t find volume discounts at Generic Trade. Every trade is tagged with a $0.59 commission — never more, never less. If you trade 1 E-mini contract or 1,000, you’ll pay the same cheap commission.
New to trading options and futures? Generic Trade will let you try your hand on new strategies without risking too much money.
Generic Trade offers 3 different platforms: a web platform, a mobile app and a pro trader platform. Generic Trader Online, the web-based platform, is free to use for all users. Generic Trader Professional and the mobile app require a platform fee to use, but once paid, you get access to the complete suite of platforms.
Generic Trader Online
Users can access Generic Trade Online for no fee and still make all available trades. You’re not limited by asset classes or trade volume — you’ll still be charged the same $0.59 commission. But Generic Trader Online is a relatively barebones platform. You’ll have real-time charts but without the advanced tools found in the Professional platform. Real-time quotes are available, but not Level II. You won’t see the exchange order book, either. Generic Trader Online gives you simple account management and quick trading, which might be all some users need. But we recommend getting the full suite of platforms.
Generic Trader Professional
Now we’re talking. Generic Trader Professional has all the advanced features a day trader needs, like 1-click trade execution, stochastic charting tools and access to exchange order books. Charts on the Pro platform are much more sophisticated, showing technical trading signals like MACD, RSI and Bollinger Bands. The Order Book, Order Fill Window and Time and Sales screens give you up-to-the-microsecond updates on the status of your orders. You’ll see which orders are getting filled before you, the exact time each order is executed and others who make trades alongside you.
Generic Trader Mobile
The mobile app brings all the power and sophistication of the Pro platform right to your smartphone. Live charting, the Order Book screen and the Advanced Trader features are available on the mobile app, which is available for both iOS and Android phones. The mobile app is 100% integrated with the online and professional platforms so you can seamlessly jump from 1 platform to another.
Generic Trade’s trading infrastructure offers co-located servers for all of the exchanges it supports. It offers the lowest latency possible and uses less than 10% of bandwidth and all trades are held at either our co-located servers or the exchange servers, never on your computer. This combination is rare and very few firms offer this.
Just about all other trading platforms (except Generic Trade) make clients hold trades on their computers, which is dangerous because your computer could freeze or shut down. With Generic Trade, trades are filled immediately instead of traveling all the way from your computer.
Generic Trade doesn’t offer many research opportunities. All 3 platforms offer streaming live news services and daily reporting, but you won’t find anything from sources like Morningstar, Credit Suisse or UBS. Generic Trade does put together 4 different reports in downloadable PDFs for users:
- Daily market updates
- Early morning report
- Top trading opportunities
- Biweekly newsletter
Reports are provided by Wyckoff Market Ratings. One source is better than nothing, but this is the only research offered by Generic Trade.
As previously mentioned, Generic Trade charges a flat $0.59 commission on all trades, regardless of size or frequency. If you make 1 small trade per month, you’ll be charged that per side. Make 300 large trades a month? Same fee. Despite the lack of volume discounts, Generic Trade’s $0.59 commission is lower than the best rates offered by most competitors.
Generic Trade does have other fees, including a $59 monthly subscription charge for the Generic Trader Professional + Generic Trader Mobile platform suite. Clients can use the Generic Trade Online platform for free, but it lacks the tools and advanced features needed for day trading.
Additional fees include the standard charges for outgoing wire transfers, checks and insufficient funds. See the list of fees below and note there’s no monthly maintenance charge or inactivity fee. Generic Trade expresses all costs on its website so you don’t encounter surprises.
Generic Trade does not employ any salespeople or brokers and that is significant in providing the lowest costs possible — this can’t be done by firms that have to pay sales staff/brokers.
Be sure to check the schedule of exchange fees as well before purchasing any contracts. Each asset class comes with its own set of exchange fees you’ll need to factor into your analysis.
Client funds are well-protected at Generic Trade. Your personal information is safeguarded by the latest data encryption technology and ACH transactions can be made without worry. Generic Trade also claims membership with the National Futures Association (NFA) and is registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). Trading futures is risky and broker insolvency is always a risk but Generic Trade clients can rest easy knowing their funds and personal information are secure.
Generic Trade prides itself on customer support. Not many brokers offer 24/7 tech support, but reps from Generic Trade can be reached by phone throughout every hour of the night. You can also get 24-hour support by chat through the Generic Trader Professional platform. Have a 4 a.m. platform integration question? Simply call the 800-number.
Another great tech support feature is the live chat option. A little chat support box is present at the bottom of every page on Generic Trade’s website. Click on the box to open a chat window and begin asking your question. Chat support hours are 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. EST Monday through Thursday and 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. EST Fridays. Email and international phone support is also available.
Time is precious when issues arise and answers need to come quickly. Every account is set up the same and that cuts down on the amount of time it takes to apply and trade.
Generic Trade has a wide variety of futures and options contracts, but no direct purchasing of stocks, bonds or ETFs. Of course, stocks and bonds aren’t why you’d be coming to a broker like Generic Trade anyway. High-speed trading and low commissions are a necessary combo for derivatives brokers and Generic Trade has both.
Contracts are available for all major American indexes, including the Dow and Russell. Currently, the only international market index available is the Nikkei. Currencies include U.S., Canadian and Australian dollars, along with Euros, Swiss francs, Japanese yen and British pounds.
Want to get into grains and meat? Futures on everything from cattle to corn are available on Generic Trade. Metals contracts feature gold, silver, copper and platinum and yes, if you’ve got a bead on breakfast drinks, you can trade coffee, sugar and orange juice. All futures and options contracts cost $1.18 for a round-trip trade, regardless of what you purchase.
With a name like Generic Trade, you know things will be simple. It takes 5 minutes to set up and fund an account and all 3 platforms have a lean learning curve. Cash can be sent via ACH and all trades have the same $0.59 commission. Customer support is available 24/7 and all potential clients can use the free demo version to test out the platform.
You’ll find no shortage of assets to trade contracts on. Traders can benefit from direct market access and sophisticated trading tools, but beginners are welcome, too. The demo version is a great way to practice trades and the low commissions allow you to test things out in reality without needing significant capital. Generic Trade is a user-friendly broker, whether you’re a seasoned trader or a newbie.
Generic Trade’s site size is limited to encourage visitors to read everything — it doesn’t contain sales hype, education or fluff. It simply shows you how to open an account.
Generic Trade is a no-frills, low hype brokerage, but it still has plenty of technological prowess and accessible customer service. Generic Trader Pro is a terrific platform for both day trading and occasional buying and selling. A $0.59 commission is tough to beat. Generic Trade designed for low costs.
Generic Trade just celebrated its 10-year anniversary and has never raised its commissions or platform fees. Everything about Generic Trade, from the fee structure to the website design to the policies and procedures, offer value and efficiency. Making money trading is hard enough — your brokerage firm shouldn’t make it more difficult.
Generic Trade doesn’t offer stocks — if it did, the company would risk its efficiency. Securities and futures trading are very different, and that’s why Generic Trade specializes in futures exclusively.
If you’re new to options and futures, you won’t find much for research and education. Generic Trade banks on the fact that you can find that information elsewhere on the web and still enjoying the benefits of an inexpensive, efficient platform.
Frequently Asked Questions
What account balance do you need to qualify for Generic Trade’s 59¢ commission rate?
You’re not required to maintain a specific account balance. You’ll automatically receive the 59¢ commission rate once you become a client.
What is Generic Trade’s minimum initial deposit requirement?
Generic Trade does not impose a minimum deposit requirement in order to open an account.
What types of accounts are offered with Generic Trade?
Generic Trade offers individual, joint, partnership, corporate, trust and IRA accounts.
I trade the ES with Generic and they have been great for a long time.