First of all, what is a trading platform? It is a software through which investors and traders can open, close and manage market positions. Trading platforms are frequently offered by brokers either for free or at a discount rate in exchange for maintaining a funded account and/or making a specified number of trades per month. Usually trading platforms will incorporate market analysis software as well, whereby traders and investors can chart the markets and perform stock screens.
Many trading platforms can be found online, but we will present to you only top 5 of them.
OptionsHouse is a leader in online stock trading brokers. It has the lowest cost for a stock trade of only $4.95. It was launched in 2006 by its parent company PEAK6 Investments to allow the stock market to be more accessible to non-professional investors interested in trading their own stocks in an intuitive and easy-to-understand atmosphere. Down side of this platform is unavailability of international stock trades.
TradeKing is an online stock broker that offers a variety of trading options to help you build your portfolio. It offers a great selection of investment tools, charts, graphs and calculators to help you manage your account. It also offers very low, flat-rate fees and provides good value for both, beginning and advanced traders. Down side is that the online platform is not customizable.
TD Ameritrade was ranked #1 Online Broker 2014 by StockBrokers.com even with its $9.99 trades. It is a very popular and well-established name in online stock brokers. Even though it offers the most popular investment options and trades, it has a pretty larger price tag than other trading platforms that could be found online. TD Ameritrade is using two very good and by some reviews the best platforms called Thinkorswim and Trade Architect which are loaded with tools and features. To conclude, we can say that even though TD Ameritrade’s service charges more than many other services, it really offers an impressive platform system worth the price.
EquityFeed is a fresh, new platform built specifically for active traders and day traders. It is currently offering 14-day free trial with no credit card needed, so it is definitely worth of shot. EquityFeed is a powerful platform that was built to give retail day traders the ultimate trading advantage. It is offering remarkable set of trading tools which is revolutionizing the way in which traders monitor the stock market in absolute real-time. Best of all is Equity Feed pricing which is very reasonable.
OptionsXpress is recognized by reputable financial and investment sources as one of the best online brokers. It offers all sorts of investment options including other investment vehicles that many other services do not offer. OptionsXpress also offers an intuitive platform with a solid lineup of tools and features. Down side of this platform is that its flat rate for trading stocks and the pre-contract fee for options are higher than with many other services.
If you are considering to start using a trading platform you should pay extra attention to its fees and commissions, trading and research tools, investments offered, mobile access, and support and customer service. Good luck!