Best Stock Trading Apps

The best stock trading apps combine low costs and useful features

We publish unbiased reviews; our opinions are our own and are not influenced by payments from advertisers. Learn about our independent review process and partners in our advertiser disclosure.

Some investors are happy putting their money into a boring fund and letting it simmer for the long term. Others are more interested in taking a hands-on approach to managing their money with active stock trading. Whether you buy and sell once in a while or want to enter a trade or more every day, there’s definitely a stock trading app for you.

The best stock app for your unique needs depends on your experience and trading goals. After reviewing fees, tradable assets, and more across several brokerages, we rounded up the best stock trading apps for both beginner and advanced investors to consider.

Best Stock Trading Apps of 2020

  • TD Ameritrade: Best Overall
  • Fidelity: Best for Beginners 
  • Webull: Best Free App 
  • SoFi: Best for Learning About Trading
  • tastyworks: Best for Options Trading 
  • Ally: Best With Banking Products

TD Ameritrade Mobile: Best Overall

the TD Ameritrade Logo

TD Ameritrade gets the top spot because it offers something for everyone and excellent pricing. The basic TD Ameritrade Mobile app is great for beginners and casual stock traders who want to manage their investments on the go. Advanced and expert traders can use the upgraded thinkorswim mobile app for a professional-style experience.

You get access to both apps with a TD Ameritrade brokerage account, which has no minimum balance requirements and no fees to trade stocks and ETFs. The fully-featured apps combine important account management features and trading features regardless of which one you choose. thinkorswim also includes a live CNBC feed inside the app.

In November 2019, Charles Schwab announced that it is acquiring TD Ameritrade. The acquisition is expected to close by the end of 2020. Once closed, it’s likely that TD Ameritrade trading platforms and Charles Schwab trading platforms will be combined into one.

Key Features

  • App names: TD Ameritrade Mobile and thinkorswim
  • Account minimum: No minimum deposit required
  • Fees: $0 commission for online stock, ETF, and options trades, but there is a 65 cent flat fee per options contract; $25 for broker-assisted trades; $49.99 for no-load mutual funds; additional fees may apply
  • Tradable assets: Wide range, including stocks, options, ETFs, mutual funds, bonds, and more
  • Account types: Supports standard, retirement, education, and other types of accounts
What We Like
  • Low-cost accounts

  • Beginner and advanced mobile apps

  • Support for a wide range of assets and account types

  • Extensive research resources

What We Don't Like
  • Uncertainty of future after Schwab acquisition

Fidelity: Best for Beginners

Fidelity Investments logo

Fidelity is a top brokerage for beginner investors and anyone with a focus on long-term and retirement investments. It’s full-service, with a wide range of account and investment types supported. With $0 stock and ETF trades, you get a lot of services at a low cost.

Fidelity Investments is the app for Android, iOS, and Amazon devices. It includes anything you need to manage your Fidelity investment accounts and enter trades. It doesn’t have as many advanced charting features as some competing mobile apps, but that’s just fine for beginners who may not want or need advanced features.

Key Features

  • App name: Fidelity Investments 
  • Account minimum: No minimum deposit required
  • Fees: $0 commission fees on stock, ETF, and options trades, but there is a 65 cent flat fee per options contract; $32.95 for broker-assisted trades; $49.95 for transaction-fee bearing mutual funds; no recurring fees for most accounts; additional fees may apply
  • Tradable assets: Stocks, ETFs, mutual funds, fractional share investing, and more
  • Account types: Supports brokerage, retirement, education accounts, and more
  • Other important details: Intuitive screens to enter trades and track performance, and social media style feed of custom-tailored account and investment information
What We Like
  • Investment and trading features meet the needs of most traders

  • Support for a wide range of account types

  • Extensive research and education resources

What We Don't Like
  • Few advanced charting options

Webull: Best Free App

Webull logo

Webull is a technology-centric trading app that’s best for stock traders with at least some experience. Webull isn’t heavy on educational resources, but it’s filled with tons of useful features. Active and expert traders will enjoy advanced charting and optional add ons for advanced quote data.

With all of these advanced features, you may expect an advanced price tag. However, Webull is almost completely free to use. There are no commissions for any trades on the app, including stocks and ETFs. However, that’s all there is to trade in the app. Cryptocurrencies are new to the platform, but you won’t find bonds, mutual funds, or other assets. While Webull is a newer app than most others on this list, it doesn’t lack in features for active stock traders.

Key Features

  • App name: Webull: Stocks, Options & ETFs 
  • Account minimum: No minimum deposit required
  • Fees: $0 commission or contract fees for online stock, ETF, or options trades; $8 to $45 for wire transfers; additional fees may apply
  • Tradable assets: Stocks, ETFs, options, and cryptocurrencies
  • Account types: Supports brokerage and IRA accounts
  • Other important details: Generous free stock promotions for new users and for customers who refer others, advanced charting features, and global markets and news
What We Like
  • No commissions platform-wide

  • Community area for interacting with other users

  • Paper trading available (virtual currency trading)

What We Don't Like
  • Limited assets available

  • Limited customer service options

SoFi: Best for Learning About Trading

SoFi logo

SoFi, short for Social Finance, offers loans, banking, and investments through a convenient mobile app. It’s ideal for investors looking to learn about stock trading. This brokerage offers commission-free trades and fractional shares (it calls them “Stock Bits”) in an account with a low $1 minimum balance requirement.

Learning section articles are a part of the SoFi Invest tab in the app. You can also browse collections of stocks and funds to help you decide what to buy. The individual pages for each stock don’t include too many details, but that makes it easier for beginners to manage their accounts without getting overwhelmed.

Key Features

  • App name: SoFi Invest Money & Buy Crypto
  • Account minimum: $1 minimum deposit required
  • Fees: No fees for online stock or ETF trades; 1.25% markup on crypto transactions; expense ratios vary on SoFi-branded ETFs; additional fees may apply
  • Tradable assets: Stocks, ETFs, and cryptocurrencies, fractional shares
  • Account types: Supports self-directed and managed portfolios, plus retirement and cryptocurrency accounts
  • Other important details: SoFi also offers loan products and cash management accounts; clean, uncluttered, and easy-to-use app; and integrated learning resources great for beginner investors
What We Like
  • Low fees

  • Easily trade full or fractional shares

  • Member events

What We Don't Like
  • Limited tradable assets

  • Few types of accounts

tastyworks: Best for Options Trading

tastyworks logo

 tastyworks

tastyworks isn’t a household name like some of the biggest brokerage firms, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t the best at what it does. Its app is ultra focused on options trading. While those are not exactly shares of stock, many options trade based on stock price movements, so tastyworks earns a mention on this list.

Stock and ETF trades are fee-free. Options on stocks and ETFs cost $1 per contract with a $10 maximum per leg. The mobile app is best for traders with some options experience, as there are many features that can distract and overwhelm newer traders. tastyworks has essential features for options traders that make trades fast without giving up many desktop trading features.

Key Features

  • App name: tastyworks
  • Account minimum: No minimum deposit required
  • Fees: No fees for stock or ETF trades; $1 per option on stocks or ETFs, with $10 maximum; $2.50 per option on futures; $1.25 per futures contract; $0.85 per futures e-micros contract; additional fees may apply
  • Tradable assets: Options for stocks, ETFs, and futures
  • Account types: Individual and joint margin or cash accounts, and retirement, corporate, trust, and international accounts
What We Like
  • Capped fees for options trades

  • Advanced options trading features

  • Follow community members for trade ideas

  • Many account types supported

What We Don't Like
  • Not the cheapest per-contract fee

  • Limited education resources compared to major brokers

Ally: Best With Banking Products

Ally logo

Ally features high-quality checking, savings, and investment accounts all in one mobile app. While you can definitely get bank accounts from some other brokers on this list, Ally Bank is one of the very best for online checking and savings regardless of investment needs. Once you factor in the low-cost, easy-to-use brokerage accounts, you get a winning bank/investment combo.

Ally charges no commissions for stock or ETF trades. Charts and data are fairly basic, but offer anything a beginner investor may want. It’s not the best for advanced features, but it covers most common needs with excellent pricing.

Key Features

  • App name: Ally
  • Account minimum: No minimum deposit required
  • Fees: $0 commission fees for online stock, ETF, or options trades, but there is a 50 cent flat fee per options contract; $20, plus regular commission fee, for broker-assisted trades; $9.95 for no-load mutual funds; additional fees may apply
  • Tradable assets: Stocks, ETFs, options, bonds, mutual funds, and more
  • Account types: Supports self-directed and managed portfolios
  • Other important details: Full-service, online-only bank and brokerage with no physical locations
What We Like
  • Pair bank accounts with your investments in one app

  • User-friendly stock trades

  • Simple and easy to use and manage

What We Don't Like
  • Mobile app research somewhat limited

  • Some advanced traders may find trading tools limited

How Do I Use a Stock Trading App?

You can use a stock trading app to buy and sell shares of stock, as well as other investment products. A stock trading app is easy for most people who are comfortable with stock market basics and smartphones.

Start by signing up for a brokerage account at your preferred brokerage from the list above. With the exception of SoFi’s $1 minimum, all brokerage accounts on this list have no minimum deposit required to get started, and charge no recurring fees. It’s often easiest to open an account online with your computer, though you usually have the option to open an account directly through the mobile app, as well.

After you open your account, download the mobile app and log in to get started buying and selling.

Remember that stocks can go up and down in value. Never make an investment or trade that you don’t fully understand to avoid unneeded risk.

How Much Money Do I Need?

You can open an account with most major brokerages with no opening deposit. But that doesn’t mean you can buy and sell stocks for free. Most brokers require you to have enough cash to buy full shares of stock, which can range from less than $5 to more than $1,000 per share.

Fidelity and SoFi both allow you to buy fractional shares, which means you can buy less than a full share at once. This lets you start buying stocks with very little money.

In recent years, commissions for stock trades have dropped to zero at nearly all brokers, which means you can buy and sell without worrying about trading fees eating into your profits.

Pros
  • Manage your investments on the go

  • Trade stocks anywhere with an internet or cellular data connection

  • Never lose track of your portfolio or investment values

  • No major drawbacks to stock trading apps

Cons
  • May be hard to disconnect from investments

  • Features may differ from desktop browser experience to mobile app experience

  • Small mobile screen may make trading difficult for some users

How Should I Choose an App?

Everyone has different trading goals and experience levels, so it’s important to look at your stock trading background and how you plan to invest when picking a brokerage and stock trading app.

The most important places to look are fees, tradable assets, available account types, and ease-of-use for the platform. Ease-of-use is subjective, so take a few minutes to explore screenshots and even demo accounts before locking yourself in.

If you’re not sure, you can always try two or three different apps to choose your favorite. With no minimum balance requirements, you can open an account and check things out before funding your account with real money.

How We Chose the Best Stock Trading Apps

To choose the best stock apps, we reviewed over 20 different brokerages and their mobile apps for costs, ease-of-use, and what users are able to do within each app. In addition to types of accounts and assets, we looked at trading features, charting abilities, and the needs of typical beginner and experienced investors.