Trading 212 is an online brokerage aiming to make the world of trading securities and forex more accessible. Our review of the Trading212 service includes information on the platform, trading fees, the demo account (and pro account), minimum deposit and payment methods. We also review the mobile app and offer tips on how to get the best from this broker.
Based in London, the company boasts an easy to use mobile app, with a range of features and functionality making it easy for anyone to start trading across a wide variety of asset classes.
Trading 212 started out in Bulgaria as a company called Avus Capital, before being incorporated in the UK in 2013. That means the company is regulated both by the Financial Services Commission in Bulgaria, and the FCA in the UK.
Over the last five years, Trading 212 has continued to rapidly grow its user base, and its trading app has been downloaded over 12 million times, making it one of the most popular trading apps in the world. Users can trade stocks, Forex pairs, indices, ETFs and even cryptocurrencies.
The trading platform Trading 212 runs on is an extremely strong element of this brokerage service.
Optimised for the mobile user’s experience, the platform is very simple to navigate around, yet offers a powerful range of features, charts and analysis without feeling clunky or overburdened. One excellent feature is the ability to place trades in multiple ways and perform several operations on the same trading pair simultaneously.
Some investors may prefer more complex or feature rich platforms, often found on MT4 – but equally, many will appreciate the custom-built, bespoke feel of the Trading 212 app. The demo account allows traders to experiment with platforms and find the one that suits them best.
Trading 212 boasts a huge range of over 1800 tradable assets. These include over 150 Forex pairs, a comprehensive range of cryptocurrencies, including Ripple, Ethereum and Bitcoin, as well as more traditional asset types such as indices, stocks and commodities.
Trading 212 offers relatively tight spreads, although admittedly not the tightest in the market. Some assets have better spreads than others, with spreads on cryptocurrencies remaining competitive. One area Trading 212 excels is commission, offering absolutely commission-free trading across a range of asset classes, an enormous differentiating factor between them and other brokers. They do, however, charge fees for currency conversion, although this isn’t unusual.
Leverage is offered at rates of around 1:300 for professional accounts, higher than many other brokers. Leverage increases risk of losses, as well as profits, so traders must use it wisely. The maximum leverage does not need to be used for every trade.
Retail traders in the EU will see leverage capped at 1:30 (or lower for certain markets such as cryptocurrency, where the regulators insist of maximum leverage of 1:2)
Trading 212 has a purpose-built app for mobile users (available on iOS and Android). It offers full functionality, even allowing trades to be conducted directly from visualisations, a feature unavailable on many other mobile apps. The user experience is excellent, with clear navigation and well thought out data visualisations.
The download is quick and simple, and the mobile application is the flagship product for Trading212. The app has therefore been developed with active traders in mind, and is among the best in the industry.
Trading 212 offers various payment options, including bank transfers, credit and debit card transactions, and a selection of digital wallets. Full details are available in the FAQ section on the website – but most mainstream funding methods are available. You can withdraw money directly into your bank account (although there are minimum withdrawal limits imposed), and money should be in your account within 2-3 business days.
Trading 212 allows users to easily toggle between ‘real’ and ‘practice’ accounts, removing the hassle of setting up two separate accounts. Setup is very simple, taking under a minute for a new account to be up and running. The same account can be ‘switched’ between real and practise funds, simplifying the use of both accounts.
Trading 212 offer a range of offers to its users, including an up to date economic calendar, detailed (but succinct) technical analysis for each tradable asset, a daily world news update, and a whole host of educational video and written tutorials explaining critical trading concepts, graphs and analysis. Users can browse comprehensive forums for further advice, and the FAQ section is well organised and extensive.
Trading 212 aren’t currently running any active bonus offers, although in the past they have offered a £50 welcome bonus for making a deposit. EU regulators in particular have restricted the use of bonus offers as they think it can lead to over trading.
Trading 212 is fully compliant with the latest EU regulations. They are regulated by the FCA in the UK, the FCS in Bulgaria, making it one of the most heavily regulated online brokerage services on the market.
That means all trades are fully licensed and users can feel safe and secure conducting business on Trading 212. Filling the position of ‘the most popular trading app’ brings with it a certain level of scrutiny in the press. So, the company has rigorous financial controls and measures in place to ensure it remains fully compliant with the latest regulations.
Trading212 offers a range of auxiliary features to support its core trading app. These include a detailed economic calendar, daily financial news updates, an in-depth education section with detailed explanations and tutorials of how various elements of trading work, summaries of key industry concepts and terms, and guides on how to use charts to conduct analysis. Negative balance protection is also offered to regulated traders.
Trading 212 technically only offers one account type, meaning fees, charges and leverage are the same for all users. This fits in with the company ethos of ‘democratising trading’. All trades are commission free, and it’s simple to switch between ‘demo mode’ and real mode – the key difference is choosing to fund your account.
Trading212 do offer ‘professional’ accounts. These allow regulated users to access higher levels of leverage in exchange for waiving regulatory protection. Traders can apply directly when they open an account, but must meet certain criteria (trading experience, trade frequency and capital) before being accepted for a Pro account.
Trading 212 has a lot to offer potential users. The primary benefit is commission free trading across a broad range of asset types. Particularly for frequent users, these small charges can quickly add up, eating into what can already be tight margins. It’s an extremely attractive prospect for those looking to enter the marketplace for the first time.
Another key benefit is the simplicity and usability of the Trading 212 mobile app. Free to download, easy to navigate and with a deep layer of functionality, it removes a huge amount of the complexity often associated with trading assets, without sacrificing on features. Finally, the range of educational material available is a key draw for those looking to learn more about financial markets.
Leverage is lower than many other online brokers for Pro clients, with many competitors offering tighter spreads. More experienced investors may prefer the more commonly used MetaTrader 4 Platform to the bespoke Trading 212 app. Metatrader 4 (MT4) integration is also missing at present.
Frequent users could potentially find the focus on mobile off-putting, as many prefer to use a terminal, usually with multiple screens, for more complex analysis.
Finally, some potential users may not enjoy the simplicity of Trading 212: they could be looking for trading platforms with a greater focus on managed services, automated trading or the ability to copy the trades of successful users.
The platform is available to use 24/7. However, markets for different asset classes are open at a variety of times, so there is a knock-on effect on users’ ability to trade some financial instruments at particular times. This has to be considered on an asset by asset basis.
Trading 212 have an excellent, highly responsive customer service team with an average response time of just 47 seconds. Customer support is available 24 hours a day across a variety of platforms and in 16 different languages, with support centres spread all over the globe.
The Trading 212 app has been downloaded several million times, with huge numbers of transactions being processed every day. The core systems underpinning the service are robust and secure, and examining the FAQ section of the website reveals a company committed to the safety and security of user data and finances. The level of regulation the company adheres to means users can feel reassured that Trading 212 is an incredibly secure platform.
In conclusion, Trading 212 is an online brokerage service for investors both new and experienced, with an excellently designed bespoke mobile app, commission free trading, a simple account structure and a whole host of additional educational features. Trading 212 offers fantastic levels of customer support and easy withdrawal of funds. All of this makes it a great option for would-be investors to explore.
On the flip-side, some potential investors may prefer a more browser-based broker, use of the popular MetaTrader 4 platform, or additional features like algorithmic/automated trading or the option of managed accounts.
Trading212 accepts traders from Australia, Thailand, Canada, United Kingdom, South Africa, Singapore, Hong Kong, India, France, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Italy, Denmark, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Luxembourg, Qatar and most other countries.
Traders can not use Trading212 from United States.