Tradestation Review 2020

TradeStation is a platform that provides online electronic brokerage services in the U.S. and all across the world. The brokerage firm is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Monex Group, Inc, a leading Japanese online financial services provider. TradeStation offers its services through its award-winning desktop platform, website, and the trading app. The platform holds an experience of more than 30 years and it provides access to the required data with an investing strategy.

Backdrop

  • The company was founded by Cuban-born brothers William “Bill” and Rafael “Ralph” Cruz.
  • Till 2001, the firm was a trading software company while since 2004-05, it has transformed into a self-clearing equities and options firm and eventually it became a self-clearing futures firm.
  • As part of its transformation, it was renamed to TradeStation. At present, the platform enables the traders to cope up with today’s ever-changing global financial scenario.

Features

TradeStation offers around 14 different types of accounts in order to facilitate a vast range of investors. The platform also comes up with highly trained, fully licensed brokerage professionals who can provide personalized support. Moreover, low-cost commission pricing plans which are more simplified are also a part of their services.

TradeStation users can hold easy access to a majority of the leading U.S. based exchanges and market centers. A user can find fully customizable market monitoring, charting and analysis tools in order to identify the market trend on the platform. Its desktop platform, website, and the trading app can be used with iOS or Android devices which are synchronized to their online accounts in real-time. Notably, Technical analysis and statistical modeling of trading strategies stand as a major plus point of the platform.

Additionally, TradeStation holds many options regarding trading products such as,

Stocks:

TradeStation happens to be something that is more than just a flashy software. You need to have a genuine sense of trend and the market to get into the exciting ride of stock trading. The brokerage platform also gives an opportunity to trade in the stock market in real-time with ease.

  • Stock trading at TradeStation goes quite easy as the platform holds an easy interface.
  • The service is Lightning-fast with Real-time market data packages.
  • In a single window, it shows Track custom alerts for so many symbols.
  • Gives quick access to major U.S. exchanges and market centers.
  • Vast research based on hundreds of historical and real-time technical and fundamental data.

ETFs:

On the other hand, the ETF trading service of TradeStation allows the investors to dive into trading of indices, sectors, commodities, and currencies. With this, one can get exposure to more than 2,000 exchange-traded funds.

  • Exposure to different industry sectors.
  • Diverse opportunities with low fees.

Crypto:

While cryptocurrencies are ‘in thing’ these days, finding a suitable platform for crypto trading is not an easy job. Here, TradeStation comes to rescue as it enables trading of coins such as Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash and XRP.

  • Comes across as a trusted platform when it’s about crypto.
  • More liquidity, more accessibility.
  • Connects to venues like exchanges, OTC desks, and other sources into a consolidated pool.

Mutual Funds:

TradeStation covers an extra mile here as it provides well-known fund managers to benefit from their experience. It gives more than 2000 options for mutual funds to choose from.

  • One can manage risk using this platform.
  • Gets you a diversified portfolio.

Apart from these trading options, TradeStation intends to empower traders by educating them to trade efficiently. It holds an educational electronic media publication portal named ‘YouCanTrade.’

The portal manifests live trading demonstrations based on various types of markets and trading approaches. These demonstrations are made with the help of experienced coaches. A few more educational offerings by YouCanTrade are:

  • Text service:lets you know up-to-date trading strategies
  • Free webinars:YouCanTrade’s webinars cover lessons on placing trades, options trading, available asset classes, and technical analysis. Moreover, its five-day “Master Class” events are also available on YouTube. Such education videos of TradeStation also includes topics like using margin, trading ETFs and IPOs (initial public offerings), and cryptocurrencies.

Most importantly, you get to experience exposure to a diverse community of traders and coaching channels. These aspects are likely to contribute to a trader’s skills and knowledge.

TradeStation also includes a section named ‘Market Insight’ in its ‘learn’ menu, where it gives an overall idea of the market. Here, a trader can get an insight regarding trade strategies. With that, this option also gets you a few important updates regarding the financial world.

Accounts and Fees:

TradeStation leverages three main types of accounts as the platform claims that one size never fits all. It gives various options including, Individual, Joint, IRA, Entity, Institutional, and Custodial accounts. Also, regarding equities accounts, the website instructs that a minimum of $500 for cash and a minimum of $2,000 for margin is required as initial funding.

As usual, the individual account gets you A personal brokerage account, now, let’s have a look at the options available in joint accounts.

  • Joint with Right of Survivorship

Two people can own this kind of account and in this case, If one account owner passes away, the second account owner can have the rights of the entire account.

  • Joint Tenants in Common

Not more than 3 individuals can own this type of account. Here, each one gets a particular percentage of the account. With any of their’s demise, their beneficiaries receive that person’s portion of the account. Notably, joint accounts are not available for crypto accounts at TradeStation.

  • Institutional

Institutional accounts of TradeStation seems to be a fit for businesses as they provide tailored solutions. Competitive pricing here are a major plus here. Apart from that, the platform enables you to operate with almost no limitations and fetches on-demand service.

  • Retirement

In its retirement account, one can look for flexibility as it covers the Traditional IRA, Roth IRA, or SEP IRA. Such an account is designed to meet one’s retirement goals. Moreover, the entity accounts seem suitable for corporations, limited liability companies, partnerships, trusts, and sole proprietorships.

Fee Structure:

When it comes to the fee structure, active traders are on the profitable end. For equity, it charges $0.60 per contract while for futures, it costs $1.50 per contract, per side. It is important to note that traders need to maintain a balance of $100,000 to avoid large platform fees. However, these minimums vary according to your accounts and securities. ETFs and other equities require $500 or $2000 to trade on margin. Also, funding of at least $2000 is a must to trade in options and futures.

Also, a few more fees will be applicable, such as, if you hold an IRA at TradeStation, a $35 annual fee will be applied. Plus, the market monitoring tool, RadarScreen, costs an additional fee of $59.95 per month if one doesn’t meet the trading threshold.

Here, mutual funds and bonds need to be held at a different brokerage. TradeStation’s brokerage fees are not so costly as compared to other discount brokerage firms.

Recent Launch (TSgo):

TSgo stands for TradeStation Go and it came to light in October this year as the trading platform came up with a service that is commission-free. However, the web platform and mobile app are only options available to TSgo customers, as they are not allowed to use the powerful downloadable TradeStation platform with all its modeling bells and whistles.

Using TSgo, one can trade stocks which also includes OTCBB/penny stocks. Plus, the newly launched service offers ETF trading with no fee while charging $0.50 per contract for options transactions.

Advantages:

  • Works perfectly for active traders

    TradeStation is specially tailored for active traders as on this platform, customers must carry out at least 50 options trades per month or trade at least 5,000 shares per month to avoid heavy fees. Its state-of-the-art software helps to deal with active and rapid trading.

  • Easy language

    On this, traders need to have a bit of knowledge about coding. The technical expertise helps to go smoothly on the platform and TradeStation comes with a simpler coding language named EasyLanguage. It is a kind of a mix of HTML and SQL.

    Basically, the language helps to understand the price charts to figure out the strategy.

  • RadarScreen: a rapid tool for updates

    RadarScreen is a tool to fetch data and it is pretty quick at this. Using it, one can access real-time data on 1000 symbols.

  • Technical Analysis

    The platform is quite impressive when it comes to data as it holds more than 40 years of historical data along with 90 years for equities. This is likely to help traders to gain an understanding of the market easily.

  • Learning platform

    TradeStation provides a thorough insight regarding trading, which helps traders to enhance their skills along with enriching their portfolio. The majority of their webinars are free of cost and cover a vast range of topics. However, a few learning software are as costly as $149.

TradeStation is a platform that has been consistent at winning awards at least for the last 4 years. This year, it has managed to get ranked in One of America’s “Top 5” Online Brokers Overall in Investopedia’s 2019 Best Online Brokers Awards. Also, it was amongst “Top 5” in “Best for Day Trading” Category. Apart from that, TradeStation was ranked America’s top online broker for Equity Trading Tools in the 2019 IBD Best Online Brokers Report, an annual survey of active investors carried out by Investor’s Business Daily.

Disadvantages:

  • Costly Learning Software

TradeStation provides most of the educational services for free of cost, yet, a few of the courses are a bit expensive. To onboard the software, it charges $149.

  • Not good for less active people

TradeStation can be a costly affair for less active traders. The trading platform seems to be specially carved for traders who can maintain the frequency of their activities.

  • Requires Programming

As the platform requires knowledge of the coding language, it becomes less feasible for many traders. One may need time to learn the same for the platform. As everyone cannot be a coding language pro, the platform remains limited to a few.

Wrap-up

In a nutshell, TradeStation is a kind of trading platform that works better for the active traders and who can also possess a technical prowess. If it fits your needs, it has one of the best software to offer you low fees. The educational webinars and learning resources are also a major plus here. The platform works best for the traders who really want to have notable trading experience, though the coding language may come across as a hurdle.

TradeStation

8.8

USER EXPERIENCE

7.1/10

REPUTATION

8.9/10

SUPPORT

9.6/10

SECURITY

8.9/10

PAYMENT OPTIONS

9.3/10

Pros

  • Works perfectly for active traders
  • Easy language
  • RadarScreen
  • Technical Analysis
  • Learning platform

Cons

  • Costly Learning Software
  • Not good for less active people
  • Requires Programming