Whether you are a new or experienced investor, you have likely heard of the popular broker service called Robinhood. However, despite being immensely popular, there are plenty of reasons to consider Robinhood alternatives for your investment needs.
In this article, we will take a close look at each of these alternatives. Before jumping in headfirst, though, we should turn our attention to Robinhood and its shortcomings.
Robinhood: An Overview
After launching a remarkably easy-to-use investment app in 2015, Robinhood quickly grew into one of the most prominent stock trading services available. The platform’s simple, beginner-friendly approach to stocks included commission-free trades, which was uncommon at the time.
The company has grown its services since 2015 to include ETFs, options, cryptocurrencies, and savings accounts. In addition, Robinhood has appealed to first-time investors by offering free stock and bonuses to new users.
Why Robinhood Might Not Be Right For You
With all of the advantages listed above, why would anyone want to miss out on Robinhood? For starters, because the company is geared towards beginner retail investors, more advanced traders will likely be disappointed by the lack of key features.
Research and analytic tools, for example, are notably missing, as are diverse account types such as tax-advantaged retirement and custodial accounts. In addition, Robinhood lacks popular investment choices such as mutual funds, foreign stocks, and bonds. Additionally, you can’t use Robinhood in Canada along with other countries.
For these reasons, Robinhood may not be a good choice for you. Even if you are only looking to ease your way into stock trading, you may quickly outgrow this platform’s offerings. There are a few more reasons to avoid Robinhood, however.
What’s Wrong With Robinhood
The problems with Robinhood do not stop with the lack of features, however. Unfortunately, there are a host of other issues that make the platform problematic.
To begin with, the real-time quotes provided by the app on individual stocks are usually inaccurate. With delays of 10-15 minutes, traders will not be able to make decisions as accurately as possible with truly up-to-date, live quotes.
In addition, Robinhood has been known to suffer outages at inopportune times, such as periods of high volatility where more people than usual are using the service. This happened several times in March 2020. On three historic days for the DOW in terms of price movements, customers were unable to access their accounts.
Another major problem for Robinhood is its cryptocurrency offerings. Unlike other similar services, Robinhood does not allow crypto buyers to transfer their currencies to secure wallets. Furthermore, the company does not even provide you with private keys for the digital assets you purchase on their platform.
Effectively, this means that those who buy cryptocurrency on Robinhood do not have true ownership of their investment, and this is a significant issue.
Recent Robinhood Issues
Recently, Robinhood has drawn widespread criticism for manipulating markets by restricting transactions of certain stocks. For example, in January 2021, the company would not allow customers to purchase shares of Gamestop (GME), AMC Entertainment Holdings (AMC), and several other stocks.
Robinhood faced class-action lawsuits over this, with claimants asserting that Robinhood restricted trading to protect their investment partners. Robinhood states that they restricted the markets to protect their users from volatility, but customers did not appreciate being limited in their purchasing ability, especially without warning.
In November of 2021, Robinhood had a large security breach in which hackers accessed the personal information of more than 5 million customers. Further, the value of Robinhood’s stock has been decreasing steadily throughout 2021.
This highlights the widespread hesitancy amongst investors to purchase shares of the company. While not necessarily a reflection of Robinhood’s future, the stock price at least indicates widespread concern about the broker.
The 23 Best Alternatives To Robinhood
Given the issues with Robinhood, it is wise to look at other options in the investing world. In this article, we will be taking a look at 23 online brokerages that can be used instead of Robinhood. If you are investing with Robinhood and looking to move your stocks to a different platform, be aware that Robinhood charges a $75 fee to transfer your holdings.
However, many brokers will cover this charge or reimburse you for that amount, so be sure to do your research before moving your funds. With that said, let’s dive straight into the list of Robinhood alternatives.
1. Interactive Brokers
Interactive Brokers has provided quality investment services to customers for more than three decades. While this platform offers cryptocurrencies, bonds, and options trades like Robinhood, it sets itself apart from their competitors by offering international stocks and futures trading.
In addition, the unique SmartRouting system that Interactive Brokers has tended to attract active traders who need their orders to be executed efficiently and cost-effectively.
Some less-experienced traders may find Interactive Brokers’ in-depth analysis tools challenging to use at first. However, their potential to help users invest wisely makes them worth the learning curve. New users should also know that while there is no minimum investment required to open your account, you have 90 days to make your first deposit.
In addition, while many trades come without commission fees, Interactive Brokers uses a complex fee system on various transactions, so be sure to read the fine print.
2. M1 Finance
M1 Finance excels for investors who enjoy long-term investing or prefer a more hands-off approach. With an array of smart tools available to automate investments, users can let the platform do much of the work for them. One of the most popular features of the M1 trading account is the pie-chart investment system.
When setting up your investment account, you will have the opportunity to build diversified portfolios. Simply select the holdings you would like to invest in regularly and choose a percentage amount for each. Then, when you deposit money into the app, M1 will invest the specified percent of your cash into each fund in your portfolio.
M1 does not charge fees for transactions. With smooth IOS and Android mobile applications, M1 makes it simple to contribute to your accounts on the go. Some less-experienced traders may be intimidated by the high level of customization options for investment. Other newer investors will love the opportunity to automate their purchases through the same customization.
In any case, M1 is an excellent Robinhood alternative. They also offer custodial and IRA accounts.
Public is unique in that it doubles as a social media platform for traders and a brokerage. This combination allows you to see what others are investing in while making your own decisions about stocks. There are no account minimums and no transaction fees.
In addition, current and previous Robinhood users will enjoy the UI experience of Public, which is very similar to Robinhood.
Like Robinhood, users can purchase single stocks (fractional shares are available) and conduct ETF trades. Public offers a savings account as well to help you meet your financial goals. While fewer analysis tools are available compared to some other brokerages, Public is an excellent choice for new and casual investors.
Betterment is an innovative, trailblazing company responsible for leading the charge in Robo-financial advising and consultations without management fees. Their platform is excellent for investors who prefer a more hands-off approach.
When setting up a new account (with no minimum opening deposit), users can select financial goals to work towards in a specified time frame. These goals include retirement, safety net, and general investing. Then, when you deposit money into your account, Betterment will allocate your funds into investments that best suit your goals and adjust them as markets fluctuate.
Betterment allows customers to link other financial accounts to provide a more comprehensive financial analysis. Robinhood users might be surprised to note that Betterment does not support individual stock transactions. They do, however, offer checking accounts and a high-yield savings account.
5. Ally Invest
Ally Invest is part of Ally Bank, a comprehensive financial product and service company. The advantage of this is that Ally Invest Users have easy access to their other preexisting accounts through Ally or can easily open new ones. This kind of broad integration of financial services is highly beneficial.
Ally offers CDs, auto loans, high-yield savings accounts, checking accounts, and more. The tools available on Ally Invest separate their service from Robinhood. With in-depth graphs and a profitability forecast tool, users will be able to make more informed purchasing and selling decisions. The financial news and analysis offerings by Ally Invest also help with this.
Trades are commission-free on most transactions, with a small fee on options trading. One downside of Ally Invest is that they do not support cryptocurrencies as of January 2022. In addition, the easy-to-use mobile app does not have a wide variety of tools that are available on the web application.
However, Ally Invest does offer mutual funds, which more than makes up for these minor limitations.
Moomoo is one of the newer brokerage services on this list, having started in 2018. So far, however, the company has proven to be reliable, fast, and a viable Robinhood competitor. Moomoo offers many of the same features as Robinhood, such as stock and ETF transactions without fees and no minimum sign-up deposit.
However, the broker truly excels in offering FOREX trading (Foreign Exchange Markets), drawing tools in graphs, and community forums. Moomoo also provides extended trading hours that appeal to after-hours traders.
The only option for customer service in January 2022 is email, which some users may find frustrating. Moomoo also does not support crypto transactions. But overall, the company has done an excellent job creating a service that can go toe-to-toe with Robinhood’s functionality and features.
Firstrade offers a broad range of investment options, from CDs and bonds to mutual funds and ETFs. The best part? Firstrade has some of the lowest fees in the industry on its platform. Like Robinhood, this broker also offers free stock to new customers.
In addition, Firstrade separates itself by allowing users outside of the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia to open an account and trade.
Firstrade has an intuitive, easy-to-use mobile app. The company also demonstrates a commitment to educating new and experienced traders by offering webinars and other resources. Although they do not support cryptocurrencies on their platform as of January 2022, they only offer taxable accounts without options, such as the popular Roth IRA.
8. SoFi Active Investing
SoFi is a full-service financial investment platform that offers partial shares and sign-up promotions, similar to Robinhood. They also offer various banking options, loans, credit cards, and budget management assistance. Impressively, the company provides an analysis of their loan’s margin rates. This empowers their customers to make wise borrowing decisions.
Unfortunately, as of 2022, these services are only available in the United States.
The SoFi Active Investing mobile app is simple to use. Some users may find that the broker sacrifices certain in-depth research and analytic tools for this simplicity. However, meeting virtually with a financial advisor for free makes up for this deficiency.
In addition, cryptocurrency traders may dislike the 1.25% fee taken from each crypto purchase. Robinhood, by comparison, provides commission-free crypto trading.
9. TD Ameritrade
TD Ameritrade has tools to suit beginner and advanced traders with a mobile app, robust web application, and data-driven day trading software called Thinkorswim. One advantage of this broker is its wealth of free resources. Users can access videos, articles, courses, and events to learn more about investment strategies, accounts, and even specific stocks.
This educational factor separates TD Ameritrade from Robinhood. Trades are commission-free.
Ameritrade does not offer fractional shares, which may dissuade some investors. The broker does, however, have exceptional customer support. Helpful employees are available to assist customers 24/7 via text, email, and telephone.
One of the unique features of TD Ameritrade is its PaperMoney investing simulator. New accounts are credited with $100,000 in virtual money. Investors can try out their investment ideas risk-free with this money before spending real cash. This is especially helpful for new traders.
Stockpile is unique in that it focuses on teaching young investors about the stock market. The broker goes as far as to allow users to purchase gift cards for their friends and loved ones. These cards can be bought for specific stocks or loaded with a dollar amount and applied to any stocks desired. Customers appreciate the ability to introduce young people to trading with these cards.
Stockpile has limited functionality for more serious traders. For example, they do not offer fractional shares, options, or IRA accounts. In addition, while the broker’s educational resources are solid, more advanced research tools are lacking.
Also, Stockpile does not execute trades in real time. Instead, they conduct all transactions at one time each day. For this reason, the company’s services are best suited to give gifts to young people and engage buy-and-hold investors.
Like several other options on this list, Vanguard is one of the largest brokerage platforms available. They offer a variety of trading, savings, and retirement accounts to fit every investor’s needs. This includes CDs and bonds.
In addition, Vanguard excels in its mutual and index fund offerings, focusing on long-term investors. Users can purchase any of their 3,300+ funds without commission fees. Be sure to do your research, though many funds offered by Vanguard have investment minimum deposits ranging from $1,000 to $3,000.
One downside to Vanguard is that they do not offer fractional shares: if you want to buy a stock, be prepared to purchase at least one full share before pulling the trigger. Another thing to keep in mind is that the research tools are limited. They are, however, each free to use for all account types.
Stash presents itself as a user-friendly trading platform accessible to beginner investors. The exchange offers innovative, pre-built portfolios made up of stocks designed to fit a broad range of needs (both long-term and short-term).
In addition, users enjoy Stash’s Robo-advising service. This feature provides valuable insight to help newer investors make wise financial decisions and better understand their allocations.
One thing to be aware of for traders considering this service is the associated fees. Stash has three different subscription plans charged monthly from $1 to $9. The Basic plan grants customers access to trading services.
A $3 option gives customers the option to open tax-advantaged retirement accounts through Stash, such as an IRA. Finally, the $9 plan is built for families, providing two custodial accounts and a free debit card. Traders considering Stash should ensure that they choose the best plan to suit their needs.
eToro is similar to Public in that there is a prominent social element to the broker’s services. After creating an account, eToro users have the option to copy the trades of popular investors who also use the platform and track their successes.
In addition, the company provides a unique analysis tool to inform traders about the risk tolerance of certain portfolios. eToro offers more than 35 cryptocurrencies as well.
eToro, like TD Ameritrade, offers new users 100k in virtual funds to experiment with investment strategies. The educational tools associated with this feature are well-developed, and the mobile app is intuitive to use as well.
One downside for this broker is their customer service. If you need help with your account, you will need to open a claim online and wait for an associate’s assistance. There is no option to speak with someone over the phone.
14. Charles Schwab
Charles Schwab has a long track record of providing safe, reliable financial services. In 2021, they had an enormous $7.5 trillion of assets under management. They offer commission-free transactions fractional shares in the S&P 500 (minimum of $5) and are known for transparent business practices.
In addition, if you prefer for others to manage your investments for you, Charles Schwab offers automated investment tools that allow expert investors to manage your portfolio.
Charles Schwab even offers certified advisors and consultants across the United States that can meet with clients in person. These agents can help you set up your account, manage your investment, and track long-term goals. Various fees apply to these services.
For newer investors, the broad range of investment options may be intimidating. In addition, the mobile app and web application can take some time to get used to. Overall, however, the breadth of services offered by Charles Schwab makes up for these minor issues.
Acorns is one of the most unique investment services on this list, offering a fully automated experience. By linking your bank card to your investment account, Acorns will round up your purchases to the nearest dollar and invest that change into various funds. These funds are managed to diversify and stabilize your holdings.
Of course, users are free to deposit funds into Acorns at any time. There is a small monthly fee ($3-$5) depending on the plan you choose. Retirement and checking accounts are also available (one account even offers a metal debit card).
When setting up a new account, users will have the opportunity to choose from several pre-built portfolios to invest in. In addition, Acorns offers automatic rebalancing to keep up with market fluctuations.
As of 2022, there are two membership plans. The first is a basic package for individuals, which costs $3 per month. The $5 option is for a family plan which allows users to set up custodial accounts. One unique feature that Acorns offers is a job-hunting service.
The company partners with ZipRecruiter to post job openings, internships, and other opportunities to earn money. While investors are limited in the types of investments they can conduct, these unique services set Acorns apart from Robinhood.
TradeStation appeals to new and advanced traders with advanced analysis tools and commission-free trading. The platform offers stocks, options, futures, ETFs, and cryptocurrencies. In addition, these investments can be managed with one of the best mobile apps in the industry. The app features dynamic charts and graphs along with the web application.
TradeStation pulls away from Robinhood in terms of order execution: While Robinhood users often experience a delay in their transactions, TradeStation boasts lightning-fast order routing to complete orders for day traders as soon as possible.
There are many TradeStation subscription plans. Be sure to research all of these before signing up. In addition, retirement investors may be discouraged that the platform does not offer any transaction-free mutual funds.
TradeStation issues a $50 fee to accounts that fail to meet certain balance minimums or activity levels. There is an annual $35 account fee that users should also be aware of.
With over 7 million investors, E*TRADE has proven itself as one of the most reliable online brokers. One way that this platform sets itself apart from Robinhood is that users can access foreign exchange markets. In addition, E*TRADE offers more investment options like CDs and ETFs and provides financial advisors to help you manage your goals.
Unfortunately, E*TRADE does not support fractional share purchases. This may disappoint many prospective users who prefer to invest smaller amounts of cash. On the bright side, though, E*TRADE allows business owners to set up investment accounts for their businesses. This is a unique feature that is not available on many broker platforms.
With one of the better stellar mobile trading apps on the market, Webull’s trading experience is smooth and enjoyable. After emerging in the market in 2017, the broker gained popularity quickly as a Robinhood alternative.
A prominent feature of Webull is the ability to trade before the markets open and after they close. In addition, as of January 2022, Webull introduced fractional share trading on their platform, with a $5 minimum.
Like Robinhood, this broker allows users to purchase popular cryptocurrencies. The company offers more robust sign-up benefits than Robinhood as an added bonus. New users have the opportunity to earn between 2-4 free stocks after signing up.
However, investors who were disappointed when Robinhood restricted purchases of stocks such as Gamestop (GME) in 2020 may share the same disappointment with Webull. Webull has also blocked transactions for particular stocks in the past and joined Robinhood in prohibiting GME trading.
Tradier is built for advanced traders who have plenty of experience with investing and are comfortable with self-directed trading. While Charles Schwab has acquired Tradier, they are still operating as an independent entity as of January 2022.
Tradier offers bonds, stocks, mutual funds, ETFs, and more. Monthly fees apply to various account types: the most basic (and common) account comes with a $10 monthly charge, while the most advanced will set you back $85.
While not offering futures, users can trade options with Tradier’s service. Unfortunately, unlike Robinhood and many other brokers, this exchange does not offer any signup bonuses for new users.
However, Robinhood users who are disappointed with that platform’s limited research function will likely enjoy access to the Thinkorswim trading platform and many third-party analytic tools.
Fidelity has a stellar long-term track record for providing reliable services. Like Robinhood, users can purchase partial stock shares commission-free. The research tools are excellent, with in-depth performance archives and graphs.
Fidelity also offers savings and retirement account offerings. In addition, advanced technology allows Fidelity to analyze your financial goals, compare them to your current investments, and provide valuable information about maintaining your funds.
This company is an excellent choice for investors who enjoy purchasing mutual funds and hedge funds. While some users will find the mobile app difficult to get used to, the customer service and variety of high-quality investment options more than make up for it.
Best Places To Trade CryptoCurrency:
The first 20 platforms on this list focus on standard trading traditional assets like stocks, bonds, and mutual funds. However, many investors who are interested in Robinhood are drawn to the service’s cryptocurrency capabilities. This is because of the easy-to-use user interface and commission-free trades.
There are, however, several issues with trading cryptos on Robinhood. Primarily, users do not technically own their investments since Robinhood does not provide the currency’s keys along with the purchase. These keys allow investors to move their investments from Robinhood to private wallets.
Customers can still benefit from their crypto gains without this ability but do not have complete control over their investments.
In addition to the issue mentioned above, only seven coins are available on Robinhood as of 2022. While these include the most popular cryptos, they do not allow users to trade newer or less common coins. With these issues in mind, other platforms may better serve investors.
Here are three broker options that specialize in crypto:
Crypto.com allows traders to purchase a wide range of crypto coins in the United States (100+). A unique feature is that it offers debit cards linked to your Crypto.com holdings. With five different Visa cards offering varied reward schedules based on how much capital you invest, you can earn cryptocurrency back on your purchases.
Rewards are credited to your account in the form of CRO (Crypto.com Coin). Trading fees also vary based on how much CRO they own. New account holders can expect a fee of .04% (for market makers) or .1% (for takers). Traders who use more
Many users have trouble with the mobile trading app. While it is fully functional, new Crypto.com customers might face a learning curve with the application.
Founded in 2015, Gemini is unique among cryptocurrency brokers in that the company embraces financial regulations. This serves to give customers peace of mind that other less compliant services cannot offer. With over 50 coins to choose from in 2022, retail investors enjoy instant trades on Gemini’s servers.
More advanced traders can access the Active Trader platform, allowing customers to access top-notch analytic tools and place varying order types.
The downside to Gemini is the fee schedule. Each transaction is assessed a .5% flat fee in addition to a minimum 1.49% commission for most orders.
New users who trade more than $100 in Bitcoin during their first month using Gemini will receive $20 of free Bitcoin.
Coinbase is one of the more popular options for crypto trading. Not only is the platform available in more than 100 countries around the world, but they offer certain coins that are difficult to find on other services. The mobile app, in particular, is a massive mark in the “pro” category for Coinbase. The UI is enjoyable to use and straightforward.
For more advanced traders, the company offers Coinbase Pro. This service focuses less on providing a smooth user experience and more on providing dynamic analysis and research tools. A major pro of using Coinbase Pro is that its fee structure will save users more money than the vanilla Coinbase platform. Both are free to use.
One negative of Coinbase is the customer service. Customers often report slow response times and inadequate solutions to their issues. Overall, however, the company offers reliable service and features.
Frequently Asked Questions
As you can see, there are many viable alternatives to Robinhood. Whether you are a seasoned trader or just beginning your investing journey, there are entries on this list to fit a broad range of needs.
If you still have questions about a specific broker on this list, you can find detailed information on each company’s website.
In the meantime, here are a few answers to general questions that you may have:
Who are the most direct competitors to Robinhood?
Robinhood’s most popular features are its approachable app, commission-free trading, and cryptocurrency offerings. One of the most direct competitors to Robinhood in all three of these areas is Webull.
Users that are primarily interested in the crypto element of Robinhood will be tempted by the smooth design of Coinbase’s platform as well. Those who prefer a traditional stock trading experience with a simple mobile experience will enjoy Public.
Companies such as Fidelity and Charles Schwab constitute worthy Robinhood competitors for investors looking to grow and expand their investments.
Are Odyssey and Robinhood similar?
Odyssey and Robinhood are very different entities. Robinhood is an online broker service. They allow customers to purchase stocks, options, ETFs, and cryptocurrencies on their platform.
Odyssey is not a full-service brokerage like Robinhood but a blockchain program that offers its own tokens (OCN). Odyssey coins are part of the Ethereum (ETH) network. The program aims to promote decentralized peer-to-peer currency for sharing economies like Uber, Lyft, and Airbnb. OCN is not available for purchase on Robinhood as of January 2022.
What is a Robinhood alternative for users in Germany?
Although Robinhood unveiled plans to expand its service to Germany, they postponed those plans indefinitely due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite this delay, however, other brokers are available to traders in Germany.
For example, interactive Brokers support both European and German-specific stock market trading. They also make getting American depository receipts a smooth and straightforward process.
eToro is another brokerage that supports German traders. As a bonus, the eToro app is simple and easy to use, just like the Robinhood application.
What are some excellent Robinhood alternatives for Canadians?
Canadian residents may be frustrated that they are unable to use Robinhood for their trading needs. Fortunately, there are viable options that are available in Canada. Interactive Brokers offers low trading fees and features Canadian markets.
Fidelity also offers a full range of services for people who live north of the United States border. Gemini allows Canadian customers to buy, sell, and trade coins for people primarily interested in digital trading currencies.