Trading Platforms

Our comprehensive guide provides you with an insight into some of the top platforms for 2023.

As well as information on essential features like security and regulation, beginner-friendly options, advanced tools and fees necessary to use them.

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More than 40,000 UK & international investment options

Invest from £1

Features:
Flat fee plan starts from £4.99 pm
No trading fees when you top up monthly with the ii regular investing service.

Special Offer: Our best Trading Account offer. Ever! Get between £100 and £1,500 cashback when you open a Trading Account before 29th Feb.
New customers only. Min £2k deposit. Terms apply. Capital at risk.

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Trusted by over 400,000 people. Fully FSCS protected. ADVFN Winner 2022 “Best Low Cost Stockbroker”. Capital at risk.
Invest in over 6,100+ US, UK & EU stocks & ETFs commission-free

Features:
Start with £2 investment. Superb app design and transparent account charges. Great for beginners and experienced investors alike

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Trusted by over 1.5 million people. FSCS protected. Capital at risk. Other charges may apply. No subscription required
Choose from over 2,000 funds
From £25 per month

Features:
Low cost ISA. Multi-award winning ISA provider.

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Mobile app – manage your portfolio on the move. FSCS protected. Capital at risk.
Trade UK & International shares for £6. No charge for fund trades

Features:

One simple customer fee of 0.25% p.a.
8,000+ investments to choose from.
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Barclays gives you the investment choice and research tools you need to grow your money. Over 300,000 people have used our award winning service, expert insights and resources to help work towards their financial goals. Voted Best Stockbroker at the Online Money Awards 2023. Capital at risk.
Access over 3,000 funds. UK & Overseas shares.
Invest from £100 or £25 pm

Features:
Live share prices.
Award winning services.

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Hargreaves Lansdown is the UK’s No 1 platform for private investors trusted by over 1.6 million customers. Capital at risk.
Access to 70,000+ instruments, smart trading tools & market insights

Investment platform for different needs and experience levels

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Saxo serve clients in 170 countries, hold 70+ bn GBP in assets under management & process 1m transactions daily. FCA regulated. Capital at risk.
Buy & trade over 3500+ UK, EU and US stocks with low 0.35% currency conversion.

Features:
Say goodbye to high minimums and barriers to entry. Capital at Risk

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Multi-currency investing, your money goes even further without the constant foreign exchange fees. Deposit, hold and invest in international stock markets in EUR, GBP and USD — all under one roof. Shares have a low, transparent execution cost. Investing in your local ETFs is completely free of Lightyear fee (other fees may apply). Earn interest on uninvested cash. Access live news feeds about the stocks you own, as well as professional analyst ratings & price targets. Lightyear is now live on web and has launched earnings calls audios. Capital at Risk. We, Fair Investment Company, will be paid a referral fee if you open an account and deposit funds through some of the links on this page. This includes financial promotion.
Invest in real stocks with 0% commission*. Over 5300 instruments

Features:
XTB is one of the largest stock exchange-listed FX brokers in the world with 720,000+ customers and over 20 years of activity in the financial markets. Capital at Risk

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World class trading platform: Easy to use, fully customisable, superior execution speeds, performance statistics. Applying for an account is quick and easy with a secure online form, and you could be trading within minutes. Wide range of instruments -forex, indices, commodities, shares and ETF’s. Multilingual customer support team is ready to help you – 24h hours a day from Monday to Friday. *For monthly turnover up to 100,000 EUR (then comm. 0.2%, min. 10 EUR). Capital at risk
Buy & trade over 17,000+ shares online. Zero commission on US shares. FX conversion fee of just 0.5%.
Invest from £1

Features:
Easy to use platform. Demo account. Speak to other traders. Award winning trading app.

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IG offer exclusive out of hours giving access to 70+ shares when the market is closed. 313,000+ clients worldwide. FCA Regulated. Capital at risk. Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 69% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading spread bets and CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how spread bets and CFDs work, and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money
Choice of 500 low cost ETF Funds
Invest from £1

Features:
No buying or selling fees. No ISA account charges. Powerful automation. Easy diversification. DIY or managed.

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The InvestEngine offers investors a low cost ETF investment platform. Build your own portfolio commission free or leave it to their experts for just 0.25%. Build your own low cost portfolio using managers such as Vanguard, iShares & Invesco. FSCS protected. Capital at risk.

Our Top 10 Best Trading Platforms of 2023

Key Takeaways

  • Explore the top 10 trading platforms of 2023 based on fees, tools, and user experience.
  • Consider features such as fees, investment options and research tools when selecting a platform.
  • Ensure security by choosing regulated platforms with appropriate safety measures in place for optimal stock market experience.

Top Trading Platforms of 2023

We have researched and studied several factors such as fees, tools, user experience etcetera so that we can present the most suitable 10 trading platforms for this year. Interactive Investor, AJ Bell, Hargreaves Lansdown , XTB, IG, Barclays, Saxo,  Lightyear InvestEngine and Bestinvest.

Interactive Investor

Interactive Investor is an attractive trading platform which offers a competitive flat fee structure and plenty of research tools for active traders. It features access to 150 global markets, including ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds), as well as various investment options that suit casual investors.

It includes fractional trading in its list of perks alongside the option to use virtual funds with a demo account for free.

Despite these advantages, there are some disadvantages such as monthly subscription fees, commission charges, and comparatively more complex pricing arrangements compared to similar services like AJ Bell.

Nonetheless, when weighing up pros & cons together. All things considered – Interactive Investor remains one of the strongest platforms in the UK out there today due largely to its wide range of offerings catering towards different needs of investing public alike worldwide

AJ Bell

As a reliable online broker, AJ Bell provides an intuitive platform with access to the full spectrum of investment products. Whether it’s shares, funds, trusts or bonds from 24 distinct markets – traders will be able to choose whatever best fits their needs and obtain a well-diversified portfolio.

AJ Bell might not provide rock-bottom rates but it offers dependability and easy navigation through its interface while selecting various trading instruments. Users also can open up personal pension schemes on this trusted brokerage site.

Anyone looking for a steady investing experience should take into account choosing AJ Bell as a potential partner in trading stocks by taking advantage of all the benefits that come alongside using this leading UK online broker.

See our latest review of the AJ Bell investment platform, looking at the pros and cons of this for investors and traders.

Hargreaves Lansdown

Hargreaves Lansdown is a premier trading platform in the UK that has gained recognition for its remarkable customer service, diversified investment options and research resources. Just like Interactive Investor, it offers comprehensive brokerage services, including financial adviser services, to set itself apart from other similar platforms.

Customers of this trading portal have numerous opportunities – be it saving money actively or purchasing stocks & shares (S&S), dealing with stock markets or setting up ISA/ SIPP accounts. Despite high costs associated with fees ranging between 0-0.4%, capped at £200 per year, Hargreaves Lansdown remains well favoured among traders due to its quality assistance as well as a broad spectrum of investments available on their website.

IG

IG is a global trading platform designed for experienced traders, providing access to over 18,000 markets, including exchange-traded funds. Active investors will benefit from its advanced tools and competitive fees while using the ProRealTime charting system with enhanced functionalities such as API access. The minimum deposit requirement when paying via card on IG is £250, making it more suitable for seasoned users than beginners due to higher commission costs.

Barclays

Barclays is a UK high street bank offering various services such as online and mobile banking, customizing accounts, regular payments, international money transfers and managing cards.

Barclays has also created an excellent trading platform that allows users to effortlessly trade stocks by selecting investment opportunities and research resources for making informed decisions.

This friendly and reliable platform assures traders that their investments are secure when using this service amongst other more extensive available platforms. It provides quality tools for investing options and analysing data, making it one of the best trading services today despite not being fully equipped as some competitors may be.

Saxo

Saxo is a world-renowned trading platform and online broker that features competitive pricing and an extensive range of instruments to choose from, such as exchange-traded funds (ETFs), stocks, bonds, options, futures and forex.

SaxoTraderGo offers users efficient stock market analysis with the use of a charting package for monitoring price movements plus its own technical tools and research pieces provided by Saxo’s inhouse team – all at an affordable rate, which makes it desirable for anyone interested in investing or trade stocks.

Lightyear

Lightyear is a stock trading platform that offers many benefits to its users. These include commission-free trading, an accessible interface for beginners and access to stocks ETFs, options IPOs, fractional shares, as well as crypto with very low fees. It integrates banking services, making diversified portfolios easy to manage.

Despite the positive features Lightyear provides, concerns have been raised about reliability, trustworthiness and data security, which could affect how people perceive this trading platform negatively. To others on the market offering better educational resources or research tools available elsewhere more comprehensively.

Novice traders still find Lightyear’s friendly characteristics appealing, along with their zero commissions, when they are just getting started investing in markets such as stock trade, etc.

Trading Platform Features to Consider

Selecting the right trading platform is fundamental to success in the stock market. When weighing up different options, there are several features you should take into account.

Firstly, consider any fees involved with your chosen option, such as commissions, spreads and account maintenance charges. Excessive costs could reduce your profits so these must fit within the parameters of what makes sense for you specifically when looking at a particular approach to trading.

Secondary criteria would involve assessing investment opportunities and research resources available through each platform – from stocks or bonds down to ETFs/ funds – thus allowing an individual to build out their portfolio in a suitably well-rounded manner. Robust analysis components like market news/analyst reports & charting instruments will enable one to make more insightful decisions before committing capital.

Thirdly, look towards user-friendly aspects, including ease of utilisation together with customer support around availability in conjunction with mobile app working properly by factoring key requirements along those lines can match best suited choice, enabling superior experience participating inside the stock exchange

Trading Platform Safety and Regulation

When selecting a trading platform, the security and legal requirements of your investments and personal data are paramount. To ensure these aspects have been taken into consideration, choose one which is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and covered under their Financial Services Compensation Scheme.

As well as being registered with both US SEC & FINRA if you plan on investing globally. Research what protection they offer for example, in terms of encryption or two-factor authentication for added safety towards sensitive information given. This kind of secure stock trading platform can give assurance when making decisions so that attention can be dedicated directly to any investments made without having to constantly worry about potential risks involved otherwise unknowingly occurring within financial markets worldwide.

Beginner-Friendly Trading Platforms

Novice traders must select a platform tailored to their particular needs. Beginner-friendly sites typically present user-friendly interfaces, educational materials and easy-to-access features.

Research platforms supply fundamental learning resources such as videos, articles or glossaries to assist in grasping the basics of stock trading. For newcomers, it’s vital for there to be responsive customer service available should they require help navigating around the system.

Another convenient feature beginners may appreciate is virtual trading aka paper money account – enabling inexperienced investors work out strategies with notional funds prior investing real assets, helping them boost confidence while simultaneously collecting experience without any risk associated with capital losses . eToro among others offer simulated monies which allows users go through all aspects of stock investment minus making an actual deposit/investment themselves

To get started successfully on their venture into finance markets newbies ought choose a platform designed for unseasoned players so they can easily comprehend what’s involved concerning stocks transactions from within supportive environment setting solid base for fruitful future investments .

Advanced Trading Tools and Strategies

Traders who know the markets often utilize sophisticated trading strategies and tools which enhance their experience. Technical indicators, oscillators like moving averages, stochastic oscillators, MACD (Moving Average Convergence Divergence), standard deviation calculations, and Bollinger bands. Relative strength index (RSI), as well as Fibonacci retracement, are all examples of advanced analysis that traders may use to uncover trends in price movements.

Analyzing stock-price volume charts can also help experienced traders find current market behaviour patterns or future price indications. Many platforms even offer API access, enabling investors to construct custom trading algorithms for automated implementations when it comes to executing trades according to a particular strategy they set up, allowing them an optimal way to get ahead with higher returns while going through their investment journey.

Trading Fees and Costs

When considering a trading platform, the fees associated with it are an important factor to consider. They can impact your profits so you must be aware of all potential costs that may arise from investing in stocks or other assets.

Commission charges by the respective platforms for buying and selling shares need to be understood as some offer commission-free transactions. In contrast, others charge flat rates or percentages based on trade values. Spreads show how much wider purchase prices can get compared to their actual costs, which could lead to additional expenses incurred by traders – resulting in higher cost overalls on trades conducted through these services.

Account management fees like those related with lack of activity also apply depending on what kind of service is being used so taking them into consideration before selecting one will prove helpful going forward. This helps better understand different types of available options, ensuring lower future expenditures effectively.

Diversifying Your Investment Portfolio

A well-rounded and diversified investment portfolio is a critical component of effective investing. Investing in various asset classes, such as stocks, bonds, commodities or other securities, can reduce risk while allowing for potential returns. Diversifying your investments helps protect against the risks of changing market conditions due to different assets performing differently under each condition.

One method for generating diversity within an investment portfolio is through ETFs (exchange traded funds). These are baskets that contain many types of investments like stocks, commodities and bonds which trade on exchanges similar to how one would buy stock shares from companies themselves. Utilizing these options often allows investors passive access at affordable costs whilst helping cultivate a more comprehensive financial structure overall .

Another form of variety generation comes by way of mutual funds. This involves pooling together resources between multiple contributors who invest in several variants along the spectrum ,offering numerous choices when it comes to building up portfolios whilst limiting possibility undue exposure related losses no matter what may be going on nearby markets. All you need do find yourself suitable trading platform offering diverse set investment options .

Tax Implications for UK Traders

UK investors need to understand the implications of taxation when trading stocks or other investments. Capital gains tax, stamp duty and utilising Stocks and shares ISAs are all imperative factors that must be taken into consideration to make financially sound decisions within the United Kingdom market.

Capital gains tax on profits generated from stock sales will apply unless investing within an approved wrapper such as a Stocks & Shares ISA – individuals can receive up to £6,000 allowance free with trusts obtaining £3,000 whilst those liable at basic rate pay 10% CGT over £12300 with higher-rate paying 20%.

Stamp Duty applies too upon purchasing UK stocks, standing at 0.5%. Investment accounts like these offer Ways by which traders may reduce their liabilities via an annual personal allowance of up to£20 000 per year exempt from taxes. Understanding applicable taxing laws allows more efficient planning not only minimizing potential financial burden but making possible considerably larger returns on investment overall.

Summary

Choosing the ideal trading platform is a crucial step for any investor. To make sure you select the one that best meets your needs, it’s important to think about factors such as fees, variety of investments offered, user interface design and convenience, security regulations in place, plus safety features available onsite.

Beginner-oriented options alongside advanced tools, diversification possibilities, and applicable taxes when using said platforms. Whether new or experienced traders – all should benefit from this year’s offerings, which provide plenty of resources to help maximize returns while minimizing risks associated with investment operations.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is best trading investment platform?

Regarding the best trading investment platforms, three that remain in demand are Hargreaves Lansdown, Interactive Investor and AJ Bell. Meanwhile, more recently zero-commission alternatives such as IG on US stock trading and XTB.

What trading platform do most traders use?

When it comes to trading in the UK, many investors turn to ii, AJ Bell Barclays and HL for their robust platforms, useful trader content, speedy order execution capabilities. As well as beginner friendly offerings.

Which is best trade for beginners?

For beginners, swing trading is the best choice for investing as it doesn’t require much time investment but holds plenty of potential to bring in high returns. Stocks are perfect options to start with when entering this field. It offers a great opportunity that can be rewarding if done correctly and diligently.

What are the key features to consider when selecting a trading platform?

When choosing a trading platform, looking at factors like fees, research tools for investments available on the site, user experience and safety regulations as well as customer support are key elements one should consider.

How can I ensure the trading platform I choose is safe and regulated?

It is important to make sure that the trading platform you decide on has been authorised and regulated by the FCA,  as well as covered under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. This will guarantee its reliability and legal operation.

Important Risk Information: This website contains information only and does not constitute advice or a personal recommendation in any way whatsoever. The value of investments and income from them can fall as well as rise and you may not get back the full amount invested. The tax efficiency of ISAs is based on current tax law and there is no guarantee that tax rules will stay the same in the future. Different types of investment carry different levels of risk and may not be suitable for all investors. Prior to making any decision to invest, you should ensure that you are familiar with the risks associated with a particular investment and should read the product literature. If you are in any doubt as to the suitability of a particular investment, both in respect of its objectives and its risk profile, you should seek independent financial advice. * Details of how the Financial Services Compensation Scheme applies to investment firms can be found at fscs.org.uk.