Best 10 Trading Platforms in South Africa
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If you are interested in investing in the stock market but do not want to hire a stockbroker to do the work for you, it could be worth considering the various trading platforms which have become popular in recent years.
A trading platform gives you complete control over your investments while still having access to trade resources.
These platforms are run online, so you can have access to your investments anytime and in any place as long as you have an internet connection.
Each trading platform will be slightly different; therefore, they may not offer the same options and benefits.
It is important to consider all of your options before making a decision.
*Note: prices stated in the article below are in $.
What to Remember When Choosing a Trading Platform
Your level of knowledge will impact what sort of trading platform would suit you best.
If you have much experience in this area, then you would benefit from a platform that has a wide variety of analytical tools.
Beginner traders will find that they are better suited to trading platforms that have a wide range of educational options so that they can learn as they go.
Does the Platform Offer Demo Accounts?
By using a demo account, you can learn to trade with simulated money.
This allows you to learn how trading works and create your strategy before trading your own money.
It is a good way of testing a trading platform before you decide whether or not you want to join.
Demo accounts are a handy feature for those who are new to the world of trading.
These accounts offer the option to see how different features work and are a great learning tool.
Levels of customer support will vary from platform to platform.
Some will offer 24-hour assistance, seven days a week, through a variety of methods such as web support and phone.
Others will only operate during office hours and may recommend contacting their support teams through email.
If you are very new to trading or struggle with technology, you could benefit from a platform that offers more options for support.
Different platforms will offer different levels of educational materials.
Some will only offer materials that will give beginners the tools they need to get started, whereas others will be geared towards more experienced investors who wish to expand on their knowledge.
It is generally a good idea to find a platform that offers a mixture of both.
That way, even if you are a complete beginner, you will be able to get started; once you have learned the basics, you will learn more.
Nudges and Alerts
If you do not have the time to spend hours immersing yourself in the platform, you may want to choose one that offers nudges and alerts.
This can mean that you set limits, and the platform automatically executes orders for you.
Is It Compatible With Your Investment Strategy?
There are many factors to consider when thinking about your investment strategy.
Are you hoping for instant returns or long-term investment? Is there a specific type of investment that you would prefer over another?
Do you want to focus on investments solely in South Africa or across the globe?
There will be a platform that offers what you need; however, it is a good idea to be sure of what you want before deciding.
Ease of Use
Whichever platform you use, ensure it is one that you can navigate easily.
Each will be designed slightly differently; therefore, you will find that some are better suited for you than others.
If you are unsure which one will be best for you, find one which offers demo accounts so you can try it before you commit to investing your own money.
As you will potentially be investing large sums of money, good security is essential.
You will want to ensure that whichever platform you choose has a two-step authentication process as a minimum requirement.
Some platforms with mobile app options will also offer fingerprint or face recognition as an added security feature.
Top Trading Platforms in South Africa
This platform features an easy-to-use interface. Individuals can purchase stocks from a wide variety of international markets and have the option to access financial options such as cryptocurrencies and commodities.
eToro offers users the option to buy shares without paying any deposit fees or commissions.
You can, therefore, retain full ownership of any shares you choose to purchase.
It is worth noting, however, that there are fees for transferring and withdrawing funds.
When opening an account with eToro, users will be required to submit a minimum deposit of $200.
The platform is licensed with the FCA, CYsec and ASIC.
The Plus500 trading platform offers investors a wide variety of products to trade within and requires a minimum investment of $100 or £100.
This platform is handy for those who do not speak English as their native language, as there are over 30 language options to choose from.
The platform is fully enabled and clutter-free, meaning that traders can enjoy a stress-free and straightforward experience.
72% of retail CFD accounts lose money. You should consider whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.
This trading platform is particularly user-friendly, which makes it popular with those who are new to trading.
The platform offers a good selection of support and guidance for learning the ropes of trading and excellent research tools.
However, it can work out to be relatively expensive when compared to other platforms, with above-average fees.
Users who choose FXCM as their trading platform will find that although they only offer a limited number of products, it is suitable for a variety of trading types.
The platform also features a range of comprehensive research tools and requires a minimum deposit of only $50 before trading can begin.
For users who prefer an up-to-date aesthetic, this may not be the right platform as the features can feel a little outdated.
It is very well regulated by boards in the UK and Australia, however.
CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 67% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.
5. CMC Markets
CMC Markets is one of the cheapest options available, with a $0 minimum deposit and zero commission on FX and CFDs.
They do, however, charge a fee for transactions.
With over 10,000 assets to choose from, investors are spoilt for choice, and the platform has regularly received rewards for their forex trading options.
The complicated registration process could put some off; however, CMC offers demo accounts to beginner traders to help users get to grips with the website.
66% of Retail CFD or Spread Betting Accounts Lose Money.
6. IG Markets
Although IG Markets is a UK-based broker, they are one of the top names for South African trading platforms.
Accounts can be opened with as little as $1, although there is a minimum deposit before you can start trading.
Via the platform, users are able to access over 17,000 assets for trade. IG offers the option to try out demo accounts and is licensed by FCA, ASIC, CFTC and MAS.
With no commission on trade and a minimum deposit of $100, it is easy to see why AvaTrade is a popular choice for those looking for an online trading platform.
Users can choose from a variety of packages and have the option to set up automated trading.
Traders can use both mobile trading apps and desktop sites, although switching between the two is not always easy.
It is also worth mentioning that the range of assets for trading can be limited, meaning that it is not necessarily the best choice for an experienced trader who wants to explore more options.
Hotforex offers users a smaller selection of tradable products when compared to other platforms, which can mean that traders are more limited in what they can do.
It does, however, offer a wide variety of account types for users. Therefore, anyone can use the platform, no matter what their level of experience is.
Users of the platform will experience benefits such as a minimum deposit of $5, advanced trading tools and no charges for deposits or withdrawals.
Other commissions and charges can be relatively high depending on the account type.
9. Saxo Bank
With a fully comprehensive array of over 40,000 options for trade, Saxo Bank can seem like one of the best choices for someone wanting variety.
However, the $1,000 minimum deposit may mean that this trading platform is not an option for everyone.
If you can afford the high minimum deposit, you will find that there are many research and news options and zero commission and the security of trading with a well-regulated platform.
Overall, it is an excellent trading platform for those who can afford the initial outlay; however, it could be beyond some people's price range.
10. City Index
City Index is part of the Gain Capital group. This makes it a part of one of the largest international retail brokers.
With an extensive range of products, a wide variety of research tools and some of the best customer service available, it is easy to understand why City Index is a popular choice.
Some investors do find that there is a lack of transparency when it comes to pricing, however.
This can make it complicated when attempting to calculate or understand costs.
Top Trading Tips
Before committing to a specific platform, there are a few things to consider.
This is especially important if you are brand new to the world of trading.
Doing sufficient research can help you to avoid making mistakes.
Research the Different Types of Trading
There are numerous different forms of trading available to you.
Make sure that you do some research so that you can find the one that suits you best.
Consider Taking a Beginners Course
If you have no trading experience, then an excellent place to start could be with a beginners course. Demo accounts are also another great way of learning the basics.
Look Into the Tax Regulations for Where You Live
Some of the platforms available are used globally; therefore, it is important to make sure that you know what the tax regulations are for you.
This can help you avoid making any mistakes when declaring any earnings from your investments.
Decide How Much You Are Realistically Able To Invest
It is important to remember that investment is not risk-free. There is always a chance that you could lose money.
You should never invest more money than you can really afford to risk, therefore; each platform will have a different minimum investment, so choose one that you are comfortable with
This is by no means a complete list of the traders available in South Africa; however, it should be considered a good starting point.
By beginning your research here, with the traders mentioned above, you will decide on the type of platform that will best suit your needs.
Remember, it is always a good idea to keep a close eye on both brokers and individual trades investing on any platform.
WikiJob does not provide tax, investment or financial services and advice. The information is being presented without consideration of the investment objectives, risk tolerance, or financial circumstances of any specific investor and might not be suitable for all investors. Past performance is not indicative of future results. Investing involves risk including the possible loss of principal.