With the world experiencing a really tough year, growing prices of groceries and energy bills, as well as shocking mortgage rates, Bloomberg’s prediction of a year-long UK recession to begin in the fourth quarter of 2023 should not surprise anyone. Yet, everyone is seeking ways of improving their domestic budget, and it’s high time your money started working harder. If you do feel not experienced enough in finance and investment, UK online stockbrokers will show you how to start trading while sitting on your couch.
Demystifying online stockbrokers
It may be quite handy to know who a stockbroker is, as it’s the person who owns expertise in investing shares, being your middleman between you, as the investor, and the stock market. The person can give your advice together with investment tips, and online education resources, decoding the world of investment, and giving you a chance of feeling like a real expert.
At the beginning of your journey with the stock market, you need to set your financial goals, which you will try hard to achieve with the help of your online stockbroker. That’s why you have to choose wisely, most probably one of the top online stockbrokers in the UK from our list.
How to choose an online stockbroker?
There are a few things to consider before making the final decision. First of all, it’s crucial to understand what your investment needs are. Answer a few questions, such as how experienced you are as an investor, if you are willing to trade regularly, or rather rarely, or what analytical resources you actually need.
The answers to these questions will guide you in the choice of the proper trading platform, meeting all your requirements, and offering you tools which you are capable of managing.
Then it’s necessary to decide what type of investment securities you are mostly interested in - shares, bonds, Exchange Traded Funds, options, or foreign exchange. When you start investing, you need some kind of account, for example, Individual Savings Account, or Self-Invested Personal Pension to build a retirement fund for your securities.
And last but not least, analyse how much the commissions, account fees, and other costs may be during a month not to lose all your earned profits.
Top online stockbrokers in the UK
AJ Bell Youinvest
Starting your financial adventure with AJ Bell Youinvest platform you shouldn’t have problems opening your account. Yet, expect higher trading fees when compared to other platforms, and at the same time discounts when you trade regularly.
Higher-value portfolios are subject to trading fees and the custodial fee, being 0.25% of your holdings per annum value. Customers appreciate top-quality customer service, however, sophisticated investors don’t get equally sophisticated charting and analytics. You will get a tutorial without a demo mode.
eToro, with its mobile app, offers copy trading of trade stocks, CFDs, Forex, and Cryptocurrencies. It allows you to track other users' trading decisions, by trading for free, but you have to be regular, or you will be penalised for inactivity.
The company offers a demo mode and good analytical tools, but you can’t customise your account, you have to pay a fee to withdraw US dollars, which means the need of paying conversion fees. If you want to trade, choose eToro, but avoid it if you intend to buy and hold.
FinecoBank is number one of the lowest trading fees, allowing you to trade bonds, funds, Forex, and CFDs. They require you to pay for real-time streaming data but give you a range of screeners, but still limited research on the platform.
Again it’s not the best choice for sophisticated investments, with its basic charting with 24 technical indicators, news and market updates, but without being compliant with IG or Interactive Brokers standards.
Freetrade’s name suggests its commission-free stock and ETF trading. Its mobile app is user-friendly, as well as the platform itself. It’s also free of fees for no or low activity, or withdrawal. It offers educational tools, yet without a demo mode. Don’t expect analyst recommendations and developed research tools.
A stockbroker with over 40 years of experience, deep research, and capability of dealing in shares, bonds, funds, and investment trusts across international exchanges. It allows holding capabilities with ISA and SIPP wrappers. It’s great for day traders, as well as longer-term investors.
For those lacking knowledge, they offer good quality educational resources. The charge to use the platform decreases the more you trade.
A great and easy-to-use platform, allowing filtering, exceptional charting and analytical tools, and a customisable trading layout.
You can also check the most popular stocks among other users, and educate yourself with IG Academy. It’s great for trading shares, CFDs ETFs, bonds, and investment trusts, with the option of holding them in ISA or SIPP. A custody charge is £96 per year.