Best Online Stock Brokers
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Trade Station vs Sogo Trade
Who is the Best Online Stock Broker? Whether you consider yourself an avid investor or a beginner just starting to look into the stock market, it's easy to get overwhelmed by all of the stock trading options. Although some people still use traditional stock brokers, many people have found they can save a lot of money by trading stocks themselves.
Besides significant cost savings, another great advantage to executing your own transactions is that you can avoid the time and energy necessary to deal with "professional" stock brokers. Many of these individuals try to convince you to buy or sell stocks, because they earn a commission every time you make a transaction. With online stock brokers, you never have to talk to any salesmen.
TradeStation is headquartered in Florida and has been in business since 1982, which makes it one of the online stock brokers with the longest history. The service focuses on active trading, with apps and other tools designed for traders - by traders.
One of the most noteworthy aspects of TradeStation is the level of trading technology made available. Often only found in the offices and on the computers of stock brokers and professional investors, the platform offers real-time search and tracking, which can be tailored to the needs of the individual investor - to get the jump on hot opportunities before the rest of the market takes notice.
Another handy tool is the TradeStation Simulator. We appreciate online stock brokers that give clients the ability to try out their investing strategies beforehand, with no risk. Especially for people who are new to real-time stock trading, this tool makes it possible to lose everything - without actually risking a penny.
Individual stock trades are priced at $5, with additional options for those who trade in bulk.
It's obvious who TradeStation is geared towards when you look at the awards they've gotten from Barron's: #2 in their Best for Frequent Traders and Best for International Traders lists, and #5 in Best for Options Traders. If none of those three categories applies to you - in other words, you're just an average investor who wants to invest in stocks every so often - you'll probably find a more comfortable experience with one of the other online stock brokers in our review, particularly those that don't focus solely on active trading.
SogoTrade has been serving investors since 1986, aiming to provide the best value for your investment dollars. They tell you upfront that they serve "independent, self-directed" investors - in other words, you'll need to use their educational/research tools to make the most informed decisions about your stock trades. A separate service, Sogo MarketRiders, is available if you prefer more personalized guidance from your online stock broker.
SogoTrade is, at its heart, a discount online stock broker. Although they have tools for the average investor, their best fit is probably for active traders - definitely not those who want to put their money in the market and forget about it.
The SogoTrade platform reflects that "bargain brokerage" mentality: no fancy graphics, no cutting-edge tech, just spreadsheets, tickers, and so on.
You'll also see that in their pricing. While they advertise a low $2.88/trade, you'll need to be making at least 150 trades each quarter to get that price. Otherwise, expect to pay a base rate of $4.88/trade. SogoTrade also offers "prepaid trades" in quantities of 20 or 50, which can bring your rate down to that same $2.88 price without the 150+ trades requirement.
SogoTrade used to be the lowest-priced online stock broker on the market, but as the industry has changed and many brokerages are offering lower-cost (and even no-cost) trades, SogoTrade seems to leave investors with the lower-quality platform without delivering any added value in exchange. We recommend you choose another online stock broker in our review
And, of course, with fluctuations in the economy, and subsequent rises and falls in stock prices, some people panic and pull out significant investments - leaving the door wide open for others to take advantage of big opportunities to buy low and hopefully sell high later.
Of course, the best online stock brokers do have the option to work with a consultant if you choose. Especially if you're just starting to learn about investments, you may feel more comfortable knowing you can access an expert if the need arises. These services may be included, or you may have to pay for them a la carte.
So, when choosing the right online stock broker for your needs, how do you know which one is best? Before you jump in and start buying up your shares in Apple or Coca-Cola, here are some factors to keep in mind:
TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best online stock brokers available today. We hope this information helps you choose the right broker for your stock buying and trading needs!
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