Best trading platforms in October 2022

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According to investment research firm Platform, IY investing has seen a boom over the past decade with direct platforms – where investors can trade their own shares rather than using a financial advisor or broker – up to 75% of UK investments made. Accounting for more assets.

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The popularity of ‘armchair trading’ during the lockdown has also led to a surge in app-based trading, with analytics provider App Radar reporting a 40% increase in downloads of investment apps in 2021.

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And while the big DIY trading platforms including Hargreaves Lansdowne, AJ Bell and Interactive Investor dominate the market, zero-commission trading platforms have also made their mark over the years. These include eToro, Trading 212 and Freetrade, which have tapped into the growing popularity of UK stock trading.

With so many options on offer, we have considered the best trading platform by considering factors such as fees, investment choice, customer support and additional trading features.

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Please note that your capital is at risk. Investments can move up and down in value, so you can lose some, or all, of your money.

trading with freetrade

Choose from a wide range covering ETFs, Investment Trusts and Stocks

open account

Your capital is at risk, please be aware that the value of your investment may go down and you may get back less than you invested.


Which are the best trading platforms?

We researched multiple trading platforms (August 2022) and have set out our findings below. Our methodology explains the details of the research we have conducted as well as the criteria used to rank the platforms.


Hargreaves Lansdowne

Hargreaves Lansdowne Fund & Shares Account – 5/5 Stars

Trading Fee (Shares): £11.95 (0-9), £8.95 (10-19), £5.95 (20+) (based on last month’s trades).

Trading Fees (Funds): No fee

Platform Fee (Shares): No fee

Platform Fee (Fund): Tiered, 0.45% (0-£250,000), 0.25% (£250,000 – £1 million), 0.10% (£1 million – £2 million), Free (£2+ million)

Investment option: Over 3,000 funds, 8,500 UK, US, Canadian and European stocks, 1,400 ETFs and 400 investment trusts

professionals

  • wide range of investments
  • Can trade by phone, app or online
  • comprehensive telephone support

Shortcoming

  • high trading fees
  • High platform fee for the fund
  • Foreign exchange fee of 1.0% (up to £5,000)

Why we chose it:

Hargreaves Lansdown (HL) is one of the largest trading platforms with 1.7 million clients. It provides a robust all-round service with extensive research and wide investment options. One of HL’s strengths is customer service, with a comprehensive call center offering and the ability to conduct business online through the app or over the phone.

However, HL has one of the highest share trading fees and charges the highest platform fee of 0.45% for funds (for portfolios under £250,000). That said, HL does not charge a platform fee for holding shares nor does it charge a trading fee for the fund.

Overall, HL Premium is a good option for investors willing to pay the extra cost for the service.

Indicative Annual Fee:

Portfolio of £25,000: £343

Portfolio of £50,000: £399

Portfolio of £100,000: £511


Trading 212

Trading 212 Investment Account – 5/5 Stars

Trading Fees (Shares and Funds): No fee

Platform Fee (Shares and Funds): No fee

Investment option: Over 10,000 stocks, investment trusts and ETFs in the UK, US and Europe

professionals

  • No trading or platform fees
  • wide range of investments
  • Minimum Forex Fee 0.15%

Shortcoming

  • minimal research available
  • No Funds Offered (OEICs)
  • no telephone support

Why we chose it:

Trading 212, a profit-making UK start-up, offers commission-free trading with 1.5 million clients. It offers a wide choice of investments, as well as a minimum forex fee of 0.15% between selected platforms.

Although Trading 212 does not offer a telephone service, it has achieved excellent response times thanks to its messaging feature, and provides comprehensive information in response to our questions.

Overall, Trading 212 combines low fees with excellent investment options, and is the cheapest platform for foreign stock trading.

Indicative Annual Fee:

Portfolio of £25,000: No Fee

Portfolio of £50,000: No Fee

Portfolio of £100,000: No Fee


interactive investor

Interactive Investor Trading Account – 4.5/5 Stars

Trading Fees (Shares and Funds): £5.99 (one free trade per month) for UK and US stocks and funds, £19.99 for other international stocks

Platform Fee (Shares and Funds): £120 (flat fee of £9.99 per month including Stock and Share ISA and Junior ISA)

Investment option: Over 40,000 investment options, including over 3,000 funds, 600 investment trusts and 1,000 ETFs. Shares in 17 international markets including the US, Canada, Europe and Australia

professionals

  • flat platform fee
  • wide investment options
  • extensive research available

Shortcoming

  • fee for money trading fee
  • Highest foreign exchange fee (1.5% up to £25,000)

Why we chose it:

Interactive Investor (ii) is one of the larger platforms with over 400,000 clients. After it was recently purchased by investment firm abrdn, it has pledged to continue offering one of the largest investment chains in the entire market.

Unlike some platforms, Interactive Investor does not offer low trading fees to frequent traders in their standard investor account, although clients are given one free trade a month. If you are a regular trader of non-US foreign stocks, you will pay a trading fee of £19.99 in addition to the highest forex fee of 1.5%.

Investors with high-value portfolios may benefit from interactive investor’s fixed rather than proportional, platform fees. However, investors with a portfolio of £5,000 will still pay a lower platform fee than a provider charging a platform fee of 0.25%.

Although Interactive Investor does not offer a live chat facility, it responded to our calls quickly and answered our questions in detail.

In short, Interactive Investor is a good choice for occasional traders seeking a low-cost platform and a wide range of investments.

Indicative Annual Fee:

Portfolio of £25,000: £192

Portfolio of £50,000: £192

Portfolio of £100,000: £192


ig online trading platform

IG Online Trading Platform – 4.5/5 Stars

Trading Fee (Shares): Based on quarterly trades: UK shares – £8 (0-2), £3 (3+), US shares – £10 (0-2), no charge (3+), European shares – 0.1% ( Minimum fee) €10). Funds: Not Offered

Platform Fee (Shares): £24 per quarter / £96 per year (if there are no quarterly trades), no charges for 3+ trades in a quarter

Trading and Platform Fees (Funds): not offered

Investment option: Offers 13,200 UK, US, European and Australian stock and investment trusts, as well as 1,000 ETFs and 500 closed-end funds

professionals

  • Flat platform fee (free for frequent traders)
  • wide investment options
  • Low Forex Fee 0.5%

Shortcoming

  • High trading and platform fees for occasional traders
  • No Funds (OEICs) Available

Why we chose it:

IG is an FTSE 250 company with over 300,000 customers. It offers a wide range of investment options apart from advanced technical trading tools for the experienced trader.

IG offers frequent traders one of the minimum trading fees of £3 for UK shares, although less regular traders will be charged a higher trading fee of £8. It charges the lowest foreign exchange fee of 0.5% and investors can keep foreign currency in their account, which can help reduce forex fees further.

Investors with high value portfolios may be attracted by its fixed platform fee, while frequent (more than 12 trades per year) do not pay the platform fee. However, platform fees can be costly for those who trade infrequently, and for investors with low-value portfolios.

IG provides round the clock support during the week and our calls were answered almost immediately.

Overall, IG may appeal to more experienced traders who are looking for complex investments and a wider range of advanced trading tools.

Indicative Annual Fee:

Portfolio of £25,000: £192

Portfolio of £50,000: £192

Portfolio of £100,000: £192


AJ Bell Uinvest

AJ Bell Uinvest Dealing Account – 4.5/5 Stars

Trading Fee (Shares): £9.95 (0-9), £4.95 (10 or more deals in the last month).

Trading Fee (Fund): £1.50

Platform Fee (Shares): 0.25% (capped at £42 per annum)

Platform Fee (Fund): Tiered, 0.25% (0-£250,000), 0.10% (£250,000-£500,000), No Fee (£500,000+)

Investment option: More than 2,700 funds, 420 investment trusts and 2,900 ETFs, in addition to 8,200 stocks in 24 international markets, including the US, Canada, Japan and Europe

professionals

  • One of the low platform fees
  • extensive research
  • Online trading option via app or phone

Shortcoming

  • One of the highest trading fees (£9.95)
  • Fees for Funds Trading Fees
  • Foreign exchange fee of 1.00% (on the first £10,000)

Why we chose it:

AJ Bell is an FTSE 250 company with over 400,000 customers. It offers extensive research as well as one of the lowest platform fees for the fund among the larger platforms.

However, unless you trade more than ten shares a month, AJ Bell charges one of the highest share trading fees of £9.95. It is one of the few platforms to charge trading fees on funds.

While its platform fee of 0.25% is cheaper than one of the larger platforms, this fee is levied on stocks other than the fund itself.

AJ Bell offers telephone support six days a week, in addition to a live chat facility. Our calls were answered within a minute and it also excelled on the quality of answers to our questions.

Overall, AJ Bell is a more attractive platform for investors looking to buy funds rather than shares, due to platform fees and higher trading fees on shares.

Indicative Annual Fee:

Portfolio of £25,000: £301

Portfolio of £50,000: £343

Portfolio of £100,000: £406

trading with freetrade

Choose from a wide range covering ETFs, Investment Trusts and Stocks

open account

Your capital is at risk, please be aware that the value of your investment may go down and you…

Credit: www.standard.co.uk /

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