Best Stock Trading Apps of 2021: Top 10
Stock trading apps are becoming more and more popular, and there are hundreds of apps available in the Apps Store and on Google Play. Below you find the best stock trading apps clustered in three categories to enable you to make the best possible decision. Read further to find the top stock trading apps for investors, active traders and day traders on iOS, Android and PC.
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Best Stock Trading Apps for Investors
- SoFi: Best free U.S. stock trading app with automated investing
- Stash: Best stock trading app for beginners to buy fractional shares
- Acorns: Best app for spare change savings and retailer kickbacks
- Unifimoney: Best runner-up app to save, spend and invest
Best Stock Trading Apps for Day Traders
- Trade Ideas Pro: Best for automated trading and A.I.-based trading signals
- Cobra Trading: Best direct-access brokerage account for day traders
Best Stock Trading Apps for Active Traders
- Robinhood: Best stock trading app for beginners
- Webull: Best runner-up stock trading app for beginners
- TastyWorks: Best app to trade stock options for low costs
- TD Ameritrade: Best all-in-one brokerage account
Best Stock Trading Apps for Investors
Investors want to use easy-to-understand stock trading apps to automate buy- and sell transactions, including portfolio rebalancing activities and investing small amounts in fractional shares for an optimized diversified portfolio. In addition, banking features and credit cards are often included to manage finance more easily from one app. Here are the top apps for investors:
SoFi stands for Social Finance and offers an excellent investment app to handle banking, loans, and investments from one app.
Assets: SoFi offers all-in-one investing and trading for stocks, ETFs, cryptocurrencies and even participation in IPOs at IPO prices. Fractional shares from your favorite companies can also be bought to diversify the portfolio, even with smaller accounts.
Fees: You can start investing with SoFi via one-time investments or recurring investments with fractional shares if that works better for you. There is no management fee using SoFi automated investing features. In addition, active investors can trade and invest with a $0 commission, join a community with exclusive events, and receive news updates via the SoFi app. Roth and traditional IRA are also supported to help to grow your retirement savings.
Features: Automated investing is where SoFi is really strong. You can tackle multiple financial goals, use auto rebalancing functionalities to adjust your stock and bond funds quarterly and decide on an excellent diversification in your portfolio.
Usability: The SoFi app has more than 100,000 ratings in the Apple App Store and on Google Play, with average ratings of over 4.7/5. Users like the usability and simplicity of the app, and more than 2 million SoFi members use it for ETF trades, stock- and fractional share investing, retirement planning and more.
- Excellent app-ratings for the iOS and Android app
- SoFi is listed on Nasdaq with a market cap of 13.88B
- FDIC insured up to $1.5m
- 24/7 account monitoring
- IPO-investing possible
- $0 fees for nearly everything
- Only U.S.-listed securities tradeable
- 1.25% markup for crypto transactions
If you want to start investing with as little as $5 by simply using one of the best stock trading apps, then Stash is a good option. Trusted by 5 million people, Stash offers automatic investing with fractional shares, a Stock-Back card, banking features, retirement investment and children investment accounts.
Assets: Investing in stocks and exchange-traded funds is possible using Stash. But Stash is primarily made for investors and not for traders. Is is an excellent investment app. Roth IRAs are also supported, which is great to save for your retirement.
Fees: Stash offers three types of accounts. The Stash Beginner account includes advice for beginner investing, a personal portfolio, banking and insurance access for $1 per month. Stash Growth goes a step further with advice for growing personal finances and combining the Smart Portfolio and Retirement Portfolio for $3 per month. Finally, stash+ is the highest-tier account with advice for family finances, market insights, two portfolios for kids in the custodial accounts, and a $10k life insurance offered by Avibra for $9 per month.
Features: Investing and banking are the core elements that Stash offers. Everything is done via the mobile app available for Android and iOS. The factional shares are a cool feature that typical retail brokers don’t provide. Another cool feature is the Stock-Back Card, where you earn stock in well-known brands while shopping with the card. With Stash, you pick a plan, add money to Stash, bank budget and create goals, and then invest your way.
Usability: Stash scores high in terms of usability, making it one of the best stock apps for fractional share investing. The app store ratings are excellent, with over 300,000 votes and using the app is intuitive.
- No account minimum
- Fractional share investing for over 1,200 stocks and ETFs
- Mobile app for Android and iOS
- Excellent educational resources on their website
- Fee minimum of $1 per month
- Not suitable for active traders
- Only stocks and ETFs available for investing
Acors is an excellent stock trading app for beginners. If you want to invest your spare change by using a robo-advisor, Acorns is a good option. The iOS and Android app is easy-to-use and very mobile-friendly. Acorns’ motto is “invest, earn, grow, spend, later.”
Assets: With acorns, you automatically invest your spare change from a purchase like groceries and gas into one of their diversified ETF portfolios. This keeps your efforts low, and experts take care of the whole investment process. In addition, acorns introduced ESG investing build with iShares by BlackRock for the Acorns Sustainable Portfolios.
Fees: Acorns is a free stock trading app but maintaining an account costs between $1 and $5 per month. You start investing in a diversified expert portfolio to archive long-term money goals. The Lite plan for $1 per month enables the spare change invests with round-ups. The Personal plan for $3 per month adds the retirement account and access to 55,000+ fee-free ATMs with the checking account. The Family plan for $5 per month adds investment accounts for kids, including family financial advice and potential tax savings.
Features: Portfolio rebalancing is an automated process within all Acorns accounts. Recurring investments on a weekly or monthly basis are possible to make the most of cost averaging. Custom financial literacy content is powered by CNBC and accessible to all users. Over 12,000 shops and brands are included, where you can earn exciting bonus investments while shopping in your favorite stores.
Usability: Over 9 million users and excellent ratings for the app confirm that Acorn prioritizes serving users with the best possible service. Everything is handled via one app in an easy-to-understand way, trusted by leading innovators and investors from CNBC to BlackRock, with 256-bit encryption to make bak smarter, earn more money and grow your knowledge.
- Excellent reputation
- Excellent app to save the spare change
- No account minimum
- Acorns Sustainable Portfolio offered
- Expense ratio for low-balance accounts in the highest Family plan is relatively high
- Only ETF-investments
Unifimoney is based in San Francisco and aims to combine the stability, security and compliance of a traditional bank with the user experience, innovation and flexibility of the digital world. They use enhanced technology to automated investing and manual tasks for generating higher returns.
Assets: Commission-free equity trading of shares and ETFs is possible by using the Unifimoney app. You can also trade alternative assets, including precious metals like silver and gold and various cryptocurrencies.
Fees: Unifimoney provides three levels of advisory via their partner Tnjin AI Basic, Advanced and Pro, with rates starting at 0.15% annually with a minimum investment of $25 per month. Users can also directly trade stocks and fractional shares, ADRs and ETFs via their brokerage-dealer DriveWealth for $0 commissions. In addition, 33 different cryptocurrencies can be traded via their partner Gemini, a regulated crypto exchange, by using the Unifimoney app. Terms and conditions of Gemini apply for crypto investing. The account comes with an 0.2% APY. No monthly fees apply for accounts greater than $20k or with a monthly deposit of $2k.
Features: The Unifimoney app can be used to save with a high-yield checking account and for auto-investing in stocks and fractional shares with a $100 minimum opening deposit.
Usability: The Unifimoney app is currently only available for iOS, and things are still in an early stage.
- Promotions for new accounts
- Banking FDIC insured up to $750k
- Crypto investing via partner Gemini is possible
- Options trading and investing in precious metals like gold are not available yet
- Fees for small accounts are not specified on the website yet
- The mobile app is currently only available for iPhone
Stock Trading Apps for Day Traders
Is day trading from a mobile app a good idea? Most often, it is not. As a day trader, you need a high-speed internet connection, fast order routing capabilities and instant trade executions. Two stock trading apps serve day traders needs exceptionally well.
Trade Ideas was specifically developed for day traders. You can use the pre-configured market scans or define your own scanner criteria to find the trading setups once they occur. Trade Ideas alerts appear in real-time. You can manually trade based on the trade alerts or connect your brokerage account for fully automated trading.
Assets: Trade Ideas covers the whole U.S. stock market, including penny stocks and OTC stocks.
Fees: Trade Ideas offers two plans. The Premium Plan unlocks all features and is available for $2,268 annually or $228 via monthly payments. The Standard Plan includes all basic scanner features and is available for $1,068 per year or $118 per month. A discount for daytradingz.com readers is available for both plans.
Features: Both Trade Ideas plans include full access to real-time streaming trade ideas, charts, news, price alerts, real-time simulated trading with chart-based visual trade assistance and access to the live trading room. Premium unlocks the Artificial Intelligence features, one-click-trading, the backtest engine and automated trading functionalities via Brokerage Plus.
Usability: Usability is one of a kind. The downloadable software provides the best usability and performance, but you can also use the web-based version of Trade Ideas. In addition, the documentation is excellent, and various webinars take place every week where you can ask any question.
- Best stock screener for day traders
- Hundreds of possible trading strategies and scans
- Fast and reliable
- Risk-free simulated trading
- Automated trading
- Education and live-trading room
- Not the best usability from a mobile device
Cobra Trading is a direct access broker and online day trading platform offering sophisticated trading tools to enable you to capitalize on opportunities fast via direct order routing and instant trade executions.
Assets: Clients can trade equities and execute options trades via Cobra Trading.
Fees: Cobra Trading specializes in day trading, and client orders are routed directly to the preferred stock exchange or ECN. Unlike retail brokers, where the broker defines where the order goes to, at Cobra Trading, you ensure instant trade executions via direct order routing and pay commissions 0f $0.002 – $0.004 per share with a $1 minimum per order. Trading options costs between $0.30 and $0.50 per contract. The more frequently you trade, the lower the price.
Features: Cobra Trading offers three high-end day trading platforms with advanced order types, charting, basked trading, multi-account management, advanced analytics, level 2, hotkey trading and more. The platforms are DAS Trader Pro, Sterling Trader Pro and Cobra TraderPro.
Usability: The offered trading platforms stand for exceptional speed and usability. Hotkey trading enables day traders to execute trades even faster, and using the platforms is intuitive. In addition, the customer service is instantly available by phone and live chat, which makes a big difference to retail brokerages where you have long waiting times.
- Customer service is directly available via phone and live chat
- The technical advantage with high-end tools compared to retail brokerages
- Fast trade executions save money
- Competitive commission rates
- Great selection of day trading platforms
- Only U.S. markets supported
- With this link, you gain access to a platform demo, a 25% commission discount and free access to the trading platform for 1 month.
Stock Trading Apps for Active Traders
Do you want to trade from your mobile with low account minimum requirements actively? Then the stock trading apps for active traders are a good choice. They build the bridge from traditional investing activities to day trading platforms by combining the best of both worlds.
Robinhood is the market leader for mobile stock trading and options trading in the United States. The monthly downloads are insanely high and peaked in February 2021, with over 400,000 app downloads in 24 hours. The app is great for stock research on your mobile device.
Assets: The range of tradeable assets is not that broad as some may think. The clear focus is on mobile access to the stock markets, with additional options like ETF investing and options trading. In addition, you can now tap into crypto-investing to buy, HODL and sell cryptos like Bitcoin, Dogecoin, Ethereum etc., with Robinhood Crypto. However, trading futures and forex is not possible.
Fees: Robinhood disrupted the whole industry when they introduced commission-free trading a decade ago. People were joking around how long they will survive. Finally, these days Robinhood is the leader in the U.S. mobile trading app market, and all major brokerages now offer $0 commissions for U.S. listed stocks. Opening, maintaining and closing an account is free of charge. Keep in mind that their premium app Robinhood gold costs from $5 per month and comes with level 2 market data, investing on margin, plus some other benefits and is primarily beneficial for active traders.
Features: The Robinhood stock trading app is packed with solid functionalities with a clear focus on mobile investing via iOS and Android app. However, you should keep in mind that the app does not as feature-rich as some desktop apps.
Usability: Robinhood is optimized for mobile use to ensure the best stock trade and options trade executions from your mobile device. Basic charting, a trading interface, and buy and sell buttons are easy to access, and trades can be executed fast, even if you are a novice trader.
- Market leader in mobile investing and trading
- Easy-to-understand commission structure
- Robinhood Gold with extended features costs $5 per month
- Paper statements $5 each ($0 for electronic statements)
Webull is one of the best free stock trading apps and a direct competitor to Robinhood. Their business model also relies on payment for order flow to allow clients to trade commission-free.
Assets: Webull clients can trade thousands of stocks and options worldwide. Clients can also invest in fractional shares with as little as $5, invest in exchange traded funds, and invest in foreign companies via ADRs.
Fees: Webull offers commission-free trading of stocks, ETFs and options. They provide up to four times intraday buying power and two times overnight buying power when using their margin account with a minimum account size of $2,000. The interest rates range from 3.99% to 6.99%, depending on the debit balance.
Features: If you ask yourself how to get free stocks, Webull is the answer. Webull offers free stocks to new clients. Anyone opening an account with them right now will receive free shares worth up to $1,200. There is no general account minimum, but clients have to fund the account within 24 hours to get the free stocks. In average the stock will have a value of about $10, but there is a chance to get the higher-priced stock.
Usability: Webull offers a desktop trading platform for Windows, Mac OS and Linux Ubuntu and a mobile app for Android, iOS and the browser view for all devices.
- zero-commission on all U.S. listed stocks, ETFs and stock options
- Pre-market and post-market trading possible
- One of the best stock trading apps with a broad range of functionalities
- User-friendly trading app for beginners
- $8 fees for U.S. bank account deposits and $12.5 for international deposits
- $25 per withdrawal to U.S. Bank Accounts and $45 for international withdrawals
Tastyworks is a brokerage from the brains behind tastytrade and was named the best online broker in America by Investors Business Daily. The Tastyworks trading app was specifically developed to make options trading attractive to retail traders.
Assets: All types of assets can be traded from the Tastyworks account. It starts with options on stocks, ETFs, futures and micro futures, also includes classic investment assets such as stocks and ETFs, and finally, you can also trade futures, micro futures and smalls futures. Plus, recently, Tastyworks added the ability to trade cryptocurrencies.
Fees: Tastyworks has one of the most competitive fee structures in the United States brokerage industry. Their innovative cost structure especially allows active traders to save money trading larger lot sizes. The more options contract traded with one order, the higher the savings. That’s because of a price cap on the fee structure. Trading stocks and ETFs is free of commissions for unlimited shares. Stock option trades cost $1 per contract for the opening and closing transaction together with a cap of $10 per leg. Futures commissions range from $0.25 to $1.25 per contract and leg, while the fees for crypto-trading are 1% of the total transaction amount with a cap of $10 per trade.
Features: The Tastyworks mobile app is excellent for traders focusing on options trading. Tastyworks is also strong in education, which makes it also attractive for beginners.
Usability: Tastyworks offers a desktop trading app, a web-based trading interface, and a mobile trading app for iOS and Android to ensure high-speed trade executions from everywhere.
- Outstanding app for options traders with integrated curve analysis
- In-app trading inspiration
- Multiple trading apps and platforms
- Excellent commission structure
- Free ACH deposits and withdrawals
- Monthly paper statements cost $5 (electronic $0)
- Demo account not available
TD Ameritrade’s thinkorswim platform is one of the most popular best stock tracking apps, and trading solutions of retail investors in the U.S. It is also the best free stock software for stock analysis. Let’s put it in perspective. Robinhood has a market cap of 40.2B, while Charles Schwab which aquired TD Ameritrade has a stunning market cap of 142.4B. Many don’t know that TD Ameritrade makes more money via payments for order flow than any other brokerage.
Assets: TD Ameritrade offers trading stocks, ETFs, mutual funds, options, fixed income products, futures and forex currency. This makes TD Ameritrade one of the best-positioned brokerages worldwide. Only crypto-trading is not possible right now.
Fees: TD Ameritrade offers $0 commissions for online stock and ETF trades. Broker-assisted trades are possible but cost $25. For options trading, you pay $0 commissions, plus a fee of $0.65 per contract. Futures trading is a bit pricy with $2.25 per contract plus exchange and regulatory fees. There is no minimum deposit required to open an account with them.
Features: TD Ameritrade offers three kinds of platforms. A web-based one for all devices, the excellent thinkorswim desktop platform, and the TD Ameritrade mobile trading app. All can be used for stock trades, options trades, and all other assets. However, the thinkorswim desktop solution is the best TD Ameritrade trading tool since it has many excellent functionalities and features.
Usability: All tools are free to use for anyone having a TD Ameritrade account. They are tailored for any level of investors with access to independent 3rd-party research, planning tools and educational resources, technical analysis features, market scans, and customization options. The mobile trading app supports even the Apple Watch.
- Financially strong company with 32,500 employees and excellent support
- thinkorswim is one of the best stock trading apps for desktop download
- Trading options, stocks, mutual funds, forex, fixed income products, and futures from one account
- Zero commissions for U.S.-listed stocks, ETFs and options
- Some users reported that it could take a while until you reach someone from customer support
- Not available to users in the European Union, UK, Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Japan, Hong Kong, Canada and Australia
How To Chose The Best Stock Trading App
Now that we have looked at the best apps for investors, day traders and active traders, you may still be uncertain which app to use. The following mini-guide provides additional guidance.
Define your investment approach
First, you have to decide whether to go for buy-and-hold investing, swing-trading, or active trading.
Chose the type of asset you want to trade or invest in
Some vendors are best for options trades, some for stock trades on a mobile app, others are limited to invest in mutual funds or exchange traded funds. The better you specify the assets to trade, the easier it becomes to make the right decision.
Define the account size
Some accounts require a minimum deposit, while others don’t have any specific minimum account balance requirements. However, keep in mind that you need more than $25,000 to day trade using U.S. trading account from brokers like TD Ameritrade or Interactive Brokers.
Test multiple apps
It might need some time to find the best investment app, commission-free stockbroker, or personal finance app that perfectly fits your requirements. And it is worth it to invest the time for testing. Especially when a stock app is free and when the minimum balance is $0, then it might be worth it to finally choose the best stock market app after testing your favorite ones.
Consider the risks
Investing and trading involve risk. Contact your financial advisor if you have any finance-related questions. Do not listen to forums and gurus. Instead, use customer support whenever you have a question about your stock app or account.
How did we choose and rate the best stock trading apps?
We analyzed the usability, features, tradeable assets and fee structure of each stock trading app listed in this article. The three used categories make it easier to you to identify if the stock trading app is suitable for investors, active traders and day traders.
How do I choose stock market apps?
First, define your investment approach, tradeable assets and your budget. Then look at the listed apps that suit you the best and finally download the app. The article explains the 5-step process in more detail.