Contributor, Benzinga
September 30, 2022

Webull and E*TRADE compete in the online brokerage industry. They offer innovative low-cost products for traders looking for profit-maximizing investments. Yet in many ways, these companies are very different. 

E*TRADE is an online discount trading house with a history going back to 1983. It was one of the first companies to offer online brokerage services directly to customers in 1992. Its product line includes full banking services with a range of accounts.

Webull launched in 2017 as an online brokerage. The company offers zero commission and no-fee trading of stocks and exchange-traded funds (ETFs), along with direct cryptocurrency trades.  

Take a look at how the companies compare.

What is Webull?

Webull is an online brokerage started in 2017. The Chinese company with headquarters in New York targets intermediate and advanced traders of stocks and ETFs. Webull users benefit from commission-free trades of a range of investment assets.

The Webull platform is available as a mobile or desktop app. It is well designed, uncluttered and easy to use. All stocks have their own pages, connecting to company announcements and news features. The comments section allows users to gauge investor sentiment.

A deposit is not required to open an account, but if you want to use margin, you will need a minimum of $2,000 in your account. Use the leverage of up to four times the amount in your account for same-day trades and double the leverage for overnight trades.

Webull’s educational offering is, perhaps not as good as some of the competing products. It offers trading courses and a simulator that allows users to learn the system and try out trading strategies using virtual cash. The simulator feeds back real-time information and charts. 

Webull users can access technical and fundamental analysis charts and tools, including statistics and analyst recommendations. The platform allows trade for extended hours with pre- and after-hours trading. 

Customer service is as good as it gets with chat, phone and email response 24/7.

Trading Options

  • Direct crypto trading: Trade for as little as $1 from a choice of 25 cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin and Ethereum. Expect a 1% charge via price spread on all transactions. Trade in cryptos 24/7.
  • U.S.-listed stocks and ETFs 
  • Fractional shares: Investments from as little as $5 allow traders to invest in expensive stocks that may otherwise have been out of their league.

Bonds and mutual funds are not available.

What is E*TRADE?

An online discount trading house, E*TRADE, is a banker and brokerage service offering users a broad selection of account options. E*TRADE does not charge commissions or fees for stock or ETF trades. Most mutual funds are also free to trade.  

Two Mobile Apps

E*TRADE has two mobile apps, Standard E*TRADE and Power E*TRADE. Both are free to use on Apple and Android phones. The Standard app is simple to use and aimed at investors who buy to hold. The Standard version contains charts and analysis but is not at the same level as the more advanced app. This can be an advantage for beginners as it keeps things simple. 

The Power app offers additional features, including advanced charting, analysis tools and social media sentiment tracking. It targets day and derivatives traders. Both versions offer paper trading so you can try trading without risking your money. 

The mobile app is user-friendly and easy to navigate. The interface is clear and uncluttered so you can easily find your way around.

Learn how to trade various assets, customize stock charts and use screeners by tapping into the tutorial videos. If you’re new to trading, you’ll find all you need to know in the E*TRADE library. The app also contains a powerful analysis tool — the Earnings Move Analyzer. It uses historical data to offer insights into future earnings so you can test your trade strategies. Users have access to fundamental and technical analyses.

Trading Assets

E*TRADE offers trading across the board. These are the assets you can access using the E*TRADE platform:

  • Stocks
  • ETFs: 2,300 
  • Mutual funds: 9,000 sorted by asset allocation, leverage and expense ratio. More than 4,300 funds don’t charge fees. 
  • Options: Contracts for stocks, indices and futures with four options trading levels
  • Futures: In eight markets
  • Forex: Trading in nine currencies

E*TRADE does not include fractional shares or direct crypto trading in its range of trading assets. 

E*TRADE offers excellent customer service, available by email, phone or chat. You also can make in-person appointments at 30 branches. 

Your funds are safe with E*TRADE. Morgan Stanley, a member of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., backs E*TRADE. 

How Are Webull and E*TRADE Different?

Though there are some similarities between the Webull and E*TRADE product offerings, there are also several significant differences.

Trading assets: E*TRADE has a broader range of trading assets, including mutual trusts, futures and bonds to which Webull users have no access. Webull offers fractional share trading, allowing traders to buy shares in large companies for as little as $5.

Direct crypto trading: Webull offers direct cryptocurrency trading with access to 25 cryptocurrencies. E*TRADE users have access to crypto-related products but not cryptocurrency trading.

Account options: E*TRADE is a banking brokerage company offering users a wide range of accounts, including long-term savings and current accounts. Webull offers brokerage accounts and limited retirement options. Cash-management accounts are not an option. 

Platform: E*TRADE has two platform options for standard and expert trading data requirements. Webull has a single platform.

Option trading fees: E*TRADE charges 65 cents per transaction. Webull’s options transactions are free.

How Are E*TRADE and Webull Similar?

Despite their differences, E*TRADE and Webull have several similarities, including: 

Deposit: No deposit

Account fees: No account or inactivity fees. $75 to transfer funds to another broker 

Platform: Functional platforms with user-friendly interfaces

Stock and EFT transaction fees and commission: Commission and fee-free trades in stocks and EFTs

Demo accounts: Test your trading strategies on both E*TRADE and Webull without putting your money at risk

Customer service: Round-the-clock customer service through email, chat and telephone

Choose the Right Online Broker For You

The right broker for you will depend on your trading strategy. E*TRADE has a wide range of buy-to-hold assets, while Webull is pitched at more active traders. If you want to invest in bonds or trusts, E*TRADE may be the right platform for you. If you’re trading cryptocurrency, direct trading of 25 cryptocurrencies makes Webull an exciting option. 

It is essential to make the right choices when it comes to investing. Every investor wants to optimize profits, so do your research before you take the plunge. Discover new investment opportunities and broker options on Benzinga.

Frequently Asked Questions


Is Webull good for beginners?


Webull is good for beginners. Although it targets intermediate and advanced traders, there is plenty of educational material beginners can learn from. Beginners can also use the simulator to practice trades without risking their money. 


Is E*TRADE easy to use?


E*TRADE is easy to use because the more advanced charts and analytics appear on the E*TRADE Expert app. This ensures that the standard app is uncluttered and easy to navigate.