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Robinhood Alternatives

Few mobile trading apps have made waves quite as quickly and as universally as Robinhood. Robinhood’s completely free trading and concise, no-frills platform has become the number one name to know when it comes to low-cost trading. However, if you’ve decided that Robinhood isn’t the right choice for you, don’t worry — there are a number of alternatives to Robinhood that provide the same low fees and simple structure as the flagship low-cost broker. We’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite Robinhood alternatives that currently accept new users. Still learning about Robinhood’s low-cost platform? Check out our extensive Robinhood review for a crash course on what makes this broker unique.

Quick Look: The Best Robinhood Alternatives

What is Robinhood?

Robinhood is a free stock trading mobile app and desktop platform that’s notable because it offers no-commission trading. Robinhood lacks the full-service trading platform and desktop offered by most major brokers but offers an easy-to-understand and aesthetically pleasing free alternative to larger brokerage firms. Robinhood’s paid account, Robinhood Gold, gives you access to pre- and post-market trading as well as options to trade on margin in exchange for an account maintenance fee. Robinhood Gold requires a minimum account balance of $2,000. With a $0 account minimum for regular taxable accounts and over three million brokerage accounts that currently operate from its platform, Robinhood has proven itself to be a powerful new force in the investing sphere. Read Benzinga’s full Robinhood Review

Why Robinhood Might Not Be Right for You

Consider opening an account with a Robinhood alternative if you’re looking for any one of the following features which Robinhood lacks:

Analytic Features and Tools

The best online brokerages want their traders to succeed, so they often offer a large library of trading resources and educational tools to help newcomers make profitable trades. Robinhood’s straightforward and simple platform comes at a price – it lacks a large number of trading analysis tools. Robinhood allows you to create watchlists and view real-time market data but offers very little in the way of trading education, which is an interesting choice considering that Robinhood’s target audience is young investors, many of whom are eager to learn.

Candlestick Charting Options

Though Robinhood’s interface focuses on clean design and aesthetics, its candlestick charting options are difficult to view on mobile. Robinhood uses the standard green and red candle scheme similar to other brokers, but shadows are difficult to see on Robinhood’s white mobile background. Additionally, you cannot adjust candle periods to minutes or hours like on most other platforms.

Tax-Efficient Accounts

If you want to save for retirement or open an Individual Retirement Account (IRA), start savings with a different broker. Robinhood offers only individual taxable accounts, and you cannot open an IRA or solo 401(k) through Robinhood.

Mutual Fund Purchasing Options

You cannot purchase mutual funds through Robinhood’s platform.

What to Look For in a Robinhood Alternative

If you enjoy Robinhood’s basic functionality but are looking for a little more substance from your brokerage platform, consider looking for the following features:

Low Trading Fees

Though it’s hard to beat Robinhood’s $0 trades, there are a number of brokerages that allow you to buy and sell stocks, bonds, and ETFs for less than $7 a trade. Some brokerages also allow you to invest in mutual funds or index funds with no commission.

An Easy-To-Understand Platform

The best brokerage account in the world is useless if you can’t operate it. Before you commit to a broker, check out a few YouTube tutorials detailing how to use the app or online trading platform to make sure that you’re comfortable with its format. The best investing apps don’t limit functionality on their mobile platform; they offer complete desktop services in an easy-to-understand mobile format.

IRA Compatibility

If you’re looking to purchase stocks for long-term holding, you’ll want to minimize your tax liability by opening a traditional or Roth IRA instead of a taxable brokerage account like the ones that Robinhood offers as its only account type.

Automated Investing

Are you the type of investor who knows you want to save for retirement but aren’t sure where you should be putting your money? Robo-advisors offer low fees and commissions and are an inexpensive way to begin saving for retirement, your first home purchase, a child’s college fund or any other future financial goal.

The Best Alternatives to Robinhood

1. M1 Finance

Commissions

FREE automated investing

Best For
  • Do-it-yourself investors who want to save money
  • Beginning to intermediate traders
  • Passive traders

M1 Finance is a free automated investing service that offers you a hybrid platform that’s a cross between a traditional investment management service and a robo-advisor. Unlike other robo-advisors (that take your money and automatically dictate where it will be spent), M1 Finance gives you control over where you’d like to invest using a unique “pie” system. When you sign up, you’ll be asked to complete an interview about your savings goals and financial situation; you will then be offered a suggested “pie,” what M1 Finance calls its division of assets and symbolizes using a pie graph. Each pie can have up to 100 different investment “slices,” which makes it easy to build a diverse portfolio without doing a ton of research. You can then add stocks that trade on the New York Stock Exchange or the NASDAQ to your pie. M1 Finance places a large emphasis on regular and consistent investing, so you’ll be encouraged to set up automatic contributions; M1 will take care of distribution and rebalancing after your deposit has cleared. M1 is not for day traders and the platform does not allow you to buy and sell stocks as quickly as Robinhood, but it does provide a clean, simple way to get started long-term investing. With IRA options and no fee or commission charges, M1 Finance offers a simple solution to long-term saving. Read Benzinga’s full M1 Finance Review

2. Ally Invest

Commissions

$4.95 volume discount available

Best For
  • Active traders
  • Beginners looking to start trading
  • Low fees

Ally Invest is a discount brokerage firm that acts as an offset of Ally Bank. You don’t need to be an Ally Bank customer to open an account with Ally Invest, but if you are, you can enjoy seamless account integration and management. Ally Invest differs from Robinhood because it offers a host of stock trading analysis tools on its desktop platform, called the “dashboard.” Check out Benzinga’s full comparison of Ally Invest and Robinhood. On the dashboard, you can create a list of stocks you’d like to keep an eye on, initiate buy and sell orders, see your daily, monthly, and annual profits and loss charts and view candlestick charts using a customizable tile format. You can buy and sell stocks, bonds, mutual funds, ETFs and even options contracts through Ally’s all-encompassing platform. While you won’t find free trades on Ally as you would on Robinhood, the platform’s fees are more affordable than its competitors at just $4.95 per trade. With high mobile compatibility and an organized desktop platform, new traders who are interested in learning more about the market and their savings may be willing to pay the price. Read Benzinga’s full Ally Invest Review    

3. Betterment

Commissions

0.25% annual fee for accounts 0.4% Premium Plan with additional features annual fee for accounts more than $100,000

Best For
  • Intermediate investors
  • Retired investors
  • College students

Another robo-advisor that focuses on making investing simple, Betterment is an online investment firm with over $13.5 billion in assets under management. Betterment is one of the only robo-advisors with a $0 minimum deposit, which appeals to Robinhood users who are just getting started and who don’t want to risk too much of their money. Betterment uses goal-based investment tools that allow you to create a unique portfolio from 12 ETF asset classes. When you create an account with Betterment, you’ll be taken through a goal-setting course which will help you set savings objectives. You can adjust your goals and add personalized goals as well. Betterment also offers an easy-to-use app that does a good job of mimicking website functionality. Betterment isn’t free like Robinhood or M1 Finance, but its fees are very low; you’ll pay just 0.25% of the value of your account if you hold a Betterment Digital account and 0.40% if you are a Betterment Premium account holder with over $100,000 in your account. Whether you’re new to investing or you know exactly what you want and where you want it, Betterment is a top choice when it comes to passive investing.  Read Benzinga’s full Betterment Review  

4. Wisebanyan

Commissions

Free Some instances you may be required to pay transfer fees of fund fees

Best For
  • Brand-new investors
  • Those who are comfortable managing their finances solely online
  • Great technology

Wisebanyan claims to be the “world’s first financial advisor” and ditches the fees associated with traditional robo-advising services. Wisebanyan allows users to begin creating their ideal ETF asset mix with no minimum account balance. Wisebanyan makes money through its a la carte products and services that can be purchased to enhance your free Wisebanyan account. While this may sound like the account isn’t actually “free,” paid services are supplementary in nature (for example, tax loss harvesting) and most users can enjoy full usage of Wisebanyan’s robo-advising services without spending anything. You can open a traditional or Roth IRA, a SEP IRA or a taxable account with Wisebanyan, making it another great Robinhood alternative aimed at users interested in saving for retirement or another long-term financial goal. Wisebanyan’s mobile and tablet app are excellent. Like Robinhood, Wisebanyan’s platform has been designed with the novice user in mind, and its straightforward layout makes it easy for you to navigate. With no fees, no account minimums, and access to a wide range of low expense-ratio ETFs, Wisebanyan is a great passive investing alternative for users who have a low starting balance and who are looking for an intuitive user experience. Read Benzinga’s full WiseBanyan Review

5. Interactive Brokers

Commissions

$0.005 per share minimum $1 and maximum 0.5% of trade value; volume discount available

Best For
  • Forex traders
  • Professional traders
  • Frequent traders with a thirst for different order types (63!)

If you’re a frequent trader who loves Robinhood’s cost-saving structure but who also needs more in the way of research tools and functionality, chances are, you’ll love Interactive Brokers. Interactive Brokers offers some of the lowest trading fees on the market – most users can expect to pay $0.005 per share when buying and selling, which is significantly lower than most other brokerage firms. Interactive Brokers’ Trader Workstation is an in-depth and comprehensive trading platform, and its candlestick charts are easy to view and analyze. Interactive Brokers also offers an equally impressive mobile app, which is streamlined to mimic the functionality of the desktop Workstation. You’ll find a massive host of asset classes available, including stocks, bonds, options, mutual funds, futures contracts and even forex (though this option is limited to users who hold over $10 million in assets). Unlike Robinhood, Interactive Brokers has been designed with the frequent, professional trader in mind with fees for inactivity and a per-share fee, Interactive Brokers isn’t the brokerage platform for traders who are looking to dip their toes into investing. However, if you’ve been day trading on Robinhood and you’re looking to take your career to the next level with better research and analysis tools, Interactive Brokers may have what you need to up your game. Read Benzinga’s full Interactive Brokers Review

Compare Robinhood Alternatives

Broker Best For Commissions Account Minimum Choose your platform
M1 Finance
  • Do-it-yourself investors who want to save money
  • Beginning to intermediate traders
  • Passive traders
FREE automated investing $100 for regular accounts $500 for retirement accounts
Get started securely through M1 Finance's website
1 Minute Review

The brokerage allows its clients to trade without fees and commissions and takes an innovative approach to portfolio creation. With M1 Finance, everything is about the Pie, a simple way to build a portfolio. You can create custom Pies by selecting your stocks and assigning them targets or you can choose Expert Pies, which are designed to meet certain goals or to give you an exposure to a certain industry. When you pick your Pie, you can also use automation features to set up recurring investments, automatic rebalancing, tax efficiency and cash control.

Pros
  • No fees and commissions
  • Easy to create a diversified portfolio
  • Good for every experience level
  • Automated rebalancing of the portfolio
  • Allows investing in fractional shares
  • Referral program
Cons
  • New brokerage, accounts SIPC protected up to $500,000
  • You can’t invest in mutual funds
Current Promotion

Free automated investing

Ally Investment
  • Active traders
  • Beginners looking to start trading
  • Low fees
$4.95 volume discount available $0
Get started securely through Ally Investment's website
1 Minute Review

If investors are on the hunt for a bargain broker, Ally Invest could be the one. With low commissions across the board, Ally Invest (formerly TradeKing) stops potential investors in their tracks with its especially low mutual fund commissions. Commissions on stocks and ETFs are notoriously inexpensive as well, and for more active traders or those with larger account balances, commissions can dip as low as $3.95 per trade.

Pros
  • Volume discounts available
  • Among the lowest fees in industry
  • Good for every experience level
  • Excellent customer service
Cons
  • Lacks physical locations
Current Promotion

$3.95 per stock trade for Active Traders at Ally Invest

Betterment
  • Intermediate investors
  • Retired investors
  • College students
0.25% annual fee for accounts 0.4% Premium Plan with additional features annual fee for accounts more than $100,000 $0
Get started securely through Betterment's website
1 Minute Review

Offering personalized investment strategies, Betterment tailors customer portfolios based on a host of factors such as goal type, risk tolerance, account type, time horizon etc. The firm focuses on tax-efficient investing at all stages, which is its unique selling proposition.

Pros
  • Built in tax-saving strategies
  • Automated rebalancing
  • Personalized service
Cons
  • Lack of customization
  • Other Robos can be free
Current Promotion

None at this time

WiseBanyan
  • Brand-new investors
  • Those who are comfortable managing their finances solely online
  • Great technology
Free Some instances you may be required to pay transfer fees of fund fees $0
Get started securely through WiseBanyan's website
1 Minute Review

WiseBanyan’s site methodically eases you in using a goal-oriented approach. The company offers a truly relatable, tangible way to save for your future and present goals. For example, you can designate your savings goals as “Vacation to Fiji” or “Retirement” (whatever you’d like!) which cleanly categorizes your goals into manageable chunks. Risk aversion, time horizon, and money you’ve already saved are carefully considered for each individual goal and invested appropriately. It’s a slick way to manage money and is a solid way to end up with a fully-diversified portfolio while mitigating fees and tax consequences.

Pros
  • No account management fees
  • Automatic rebalancing is free on all accounts
  • No account minimums required
Cons
  • Only offers individual taxable accounts, traditional or Roth IRAs or SEP IRAs
  • Tax-loss harvesting is not included for free (which many robo-advisors offer automatically)
Current Promotion

None at this time

Interactive Brokers
  • Forex traders
  • Professional traders
  • Frequent traders with a thirst for different order types (63!)
$0.005 per share minimum $1 and maximum 0.5% of trade value; volume discount available $0 for cash account, or a margin account with $2,000
Get started securely through Interactive Brokers's website
1 Minute Review

If you consider yourself a sure-footed professional trader, Interactive Brokers might be a major possibility for you, particularly if you’re adept at navigating tricky trading platforms (can you say 124 option indicators?) or have done more than just dipped your toe a “coupla times” into the complex world of international markets.

Pros
  • If you’re into trading on margin, you’re in luck. Interactive Brokers offers the lowest rates in the industry.
  • Low pay-per-share commissions on stock trades (up to 1,000 shares) and on options trades (up to 20 contracts)
  • Vast order types options for professional traders
Cons
  • Interactive Brokers charges account fees (including annual, transfer, closing an inactivity fees) and offers an extremely complex trading platform
Current Promotion

Lower minimum activity requirements ($3/month) and opening account minimum requirement ($3,000) for clients 25 and younger.

Final Thoughts

For simple stock trading, few apps are able to fully mimic the free structure that Robinhood offers; if you’re trying to get serious about your trading, you’ll want to choose a more fleshed-out broker who offers market news, data, and analysis tools so you can continue to make informed trades. These features usually come along with a price tag in the form of commissions and fees, so make sure you do your research before you choose an account and brokerage firm. If you’re only interested in low-cost investing, choosing a robo-advisor can be a simple and low-cost way to introduce yourself to various savings options.

Compare Online Brokers
Broker Commission Account Min Get Started

$6.95 for fewer than 30 trades/quarter. $0 Learn More

Flat-fee pricing: $5 per trade, Per-share pricing: $0.006-$0.01 per share ($1 minimum per trade) based on trading volume, Unbundled pricing: $0.002-$0.01 per share ($0.50-$1 minimum) based on trading volume $5,000 for individual retirement accounts (IRAs) Learn More

$4.95 volume discount available $0 Learn More

Free $0 Learn More

$0.005 per share minimum $1 and maximum 0.5% of trade value; volume discount available $0 for cash account, or a margin account with $2,000 Learn More