Thinkorswim Or Webull
Webull is one of the newer online brokers, forming in just 2017 and launching with just a mobile app in May 2018. Webull’s primary target market, the millennials, was reflected in this mobile launch. Webull is positioning itself as a platform that can serve active traders and other people who are drawn to a platform that offers a wide range of services at no cost, including commission-free trading of stocks/ETFs or their options and multiple cryptocurrencies. Webull does skew towards the self-directed investor, with a less comprehensive offering than full service competitors. Webull customers still get a lot for their money. Webull offers a great platform with many useful tools and features as well as competitive margin rates. We will take a detailed look at Webull in order to help you determine if it is the right broker.
Webull was Investopedia’s winner for Best Broker for Low-Cost Options Trading, Best Low-Cost Day Trading Platform, and Best Low-Cost Options Broker in our 2021 Best Online Brokers Review.
- Webull does not charge commissions for stock, ETF or option trades. There are no minimum account requirements. Margin trading is available to accounts of $2000 and higher.
- Webull offers stocks, ETFs, options, and cryptocurrencies. This smaller selection of assets is meant to serve a client base that skews towards younger, self-directed customers comfortable with technology and wanting information on the go.
- Webull is simple to use and offers excellent trading functionality. It also has a wide range of tools and functionality, including news and fundamental analysis and stock screeners.
- Webull is not the broker that people should use if they are looking for more products such as managed accounts, mutual funds, fixed income, and mutual funds. Investors who prefer working with an investment advisor and want access to live trading assistance should look elsewhere.
- Fractional cryptocurrency trading in multiple cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Dodgecoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoin, ZEC, and XLM commission free.
Who is Webull for?
Webull is an investment platform that allows investors to trade without commissions and open up new avenues for trading. Webull is not a full-services broker, so its customers need a bit of a DIY approach on some aspects of portfolio management. Customers at Webull are generally younger than customers at other brokerage firms. The broker’s no cost model will also appeal to active traders. Webull’s no-cost options trading will be particularly appealing to active traders. This is because all other brokers, including those that offer free stock and ETF trades such as Schwab, still charge commissions for each leg.
- There are no commissions for stocks/ETFs, options or cryptocurrency
- No minimums or fees, easy account setup
- Free real-time streaming quotes
- Easy to use platforms with excellent content and tools
- Access to trading hours that are extended and pre-market
- No income on excess cash
- Potential for execution to be halted by payment of order flow
- Portfolio management tools are limited in number
- Access to fixed income, mutual funds or foreign exchange is not available.
- Everyone wants something for free, and that is exactly what Webull delivers. There is no commission stock or ETF option. Cryptocurrency trading is especially appealing for traders who don’t want their hands tied. Trading strategies are easier to profit from because they have lower implementation costs.
- The account opening process only takes a few minutes. You will receive account and options trading approval very quickly and it only takes a couple of additional minutes to add your bank account and set up a free ACH transfer. Once the transfer is set up, you can receive buying power on the account even though the fund transfer may not be complete for a few days.
- Webull provides free streaming quotes and three-month free access to Level 2 Advance quotes. This service is Nasdaq TotalView and provides more information about market depth as well as a deeper range of bids and questions on security. There is also auction crossing information for all NASDAQ-NYSE and regional listed stocks on NASDAQ Market Center.
- Webull’s mobile and desktop applications platforms are both relatively new. It has an intuitive design, is simple to use, and it is fresh. All the tools available are free and packed with useful tools to trade. The customizable workstation platform provides news, fundamental information on companies, and has watchlists, a stock screener, charting, and aggregate ratings from multiple analysts. Despite the information density, all of this is set up to work effectively in a streamlined way.
- Many active traders like to trade the market in the pre and/or extended hour trading periods, and Webull customers have the ability to access these hours. Traders have the option to make their orders available during non-regular trading hours.
- Customers of Webull do not receive interest on any cash balances. As Webull doesn’t support mutual fund trading, customers can’t proactively invest their unused cash in a money market fund. This may not be too much of an issue in today’s ultra-low short term interest rate environment, but the lost opportunity for generating interest on excess cash might be more noticeable if rates move higher.
- Webull can offer trading and all other services for free because it receives payment for order flow (PFOF). This may affect Webull’s execution quality. The speed and precision that orders are generally filled at today somewhat lessens this as a significant issue for most traders, but day traders and those using other strategies highly dependent on execution quality may be at a disadvantage.
- While Webull provides a lot of helpful tools for traders on its platform, the portfolio management tools are lacking. Webull customers are expected to be self-sufficient in making their own investing/trading decisions. There are no daily or intra-day market letters, and no research or analyst reports on stocks outside of aggregated analyst statistics. Webull does not offer financial advisors, recommended portfolios for rebalancing, control of tax lots on sales, or offer a dividend reinvestment program (DRIP). Webull currently doesn’t offer fractional shares. However, the broker stated that they are working on adding fractional stock shares.
- Stocks, ETFs, options and cryptocurrencies make up the entire menu at Webull. There are no fixed income investments, mutual funds, international equities, futures, or foreign exchange offerings at Webull. You get what you see.
Webull is easy to use, with clean and intuitive navigation. Webull has a website, a desktop workstation, and a mobile app that are all similarly well designed. The platforms share a modern look and feel because of having been built so recently.
The desktop workstation and website are nearly identical, with the same menu and window setup that focuses on a primary set of buttons down the left side of the screen. These buttons allow you to launch customizable quote boards. A stock page that provides a wealth information about a single stock, ETF or stock, as well as a market overview page and stock screener. An account tab shows balances, positions and buying power. You can also access bank transfers to and from your account. There is also a dedicated paper trading area. There are some minor differences between the website and the workstation, and the website only supports single leg options.
Although the mobile app has the same primary features as the website and workstation websites, there are design differences that allow for smaller screens. The menu buttons on the bottom of the app screen change to be relevant to the content shown at the time. An example of this is the options button, which appears at the bottom to show an individual stock/ETF.
You can easily create watchlists across all platforms from stock screener results. You don’t have to create watchlists on different platforms. Watchlists are also consistent across all platforms, including the web, mobile, and desktop. Order entry is straightforward, and traders can even customize trading ticket information such as order type and share amounts they most commonly use.
Webull’s workstation is highly customizable, with templates available for trading stocks and ETFs, options trading, day trading, and for cryptocurrency trading. Traders can switch between these different template pages, and can build their own page layouts from scratch through widgets. The widgets contain different information, such as news, fundamentals, options, as well as order entry, time & sales, and so on. To save screen space, the widgets can be combined. The different widgets are accessible via marked tabs at top of the window. Widget windows can also be grouped together so a stock entered in one of the widgets will automatically update in the other widgets in the group.
The trading setup also allows for a highly customized user experience, including hot keys, home page loaded on startup, default stock and option orders, and frequently used share quantities. You can do the most customization and flexibility on your workstation. The website did not have all of the trading page templates available on the workstation, and the learning center was not accessible from the website. When necessary, the system will direct you to other pages, such as the stocks window, which allows you to view stock-specific information, news and charting.
Webull makes it easy to place an order. You can add the order screen to other screens. The stock order entry screen also includes contingency orders that allow for profit taking and stop loss levels. Order tickets can be created directly from your account holdings. Simply click on the market bid or offer to automatically add that information to the trade order widget. Trading was also available directly from the charting program, with active positions and orders clearly shown on the chart.
Mobile Trade Experience
As mentioned, although there are some minor differences between the website and the workstation, there is a basic consistency across all the platforms. Although the mobile app offers the same basic features of the website and the workstation, there are some design differences that allow for smaller screens. The menu buttons adjust to the content screen, so you can access the most important functions you need. Mobile charting allows you to trade directly from the chart and shows you your open positions. Webull’s drawing tools are also much easier than many other brokers’ mobile charting software. Although the Webull stock screener is not available on the mobile app, you can convert search results from the website or at work into a watchlist which will be synced to the app.
Range of Offerings
Webull focuses exclusively on U.S. Stock, ETF and U.S.-listed options. Webull offers only personal and IRA accounts within the United States. Although Webull’s product offerings are not as extensive as full-service brokers, they can meet the needs for younger customers who are less interested in fixed income. Unlike many of the full service brokers, Webull offers trading in multiple cryptocurrencies for as little as $1. Webull does not offer traditional forex trading, fixed income, mutual funds, futures or traditional foreign currency trading. Webull investors can trade the following:
- US listed Stocks/ETFs long and short (2,085 stocks are currently on Webull’s easy to borrow list for short sales
- Stocks and ETFs Listed in the USA
- Cryptocurrency trading with Bitcoin, Dodgecoin and Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoins, ZEC, and XLM
- Notable: Although New York State is the only US state to not have approved cryptocurrency trading on Webull yet, the company anticipates that it will soon be approved.
Webull offers the most commonly used order types, including market, limit, stop, stop limit, and trailing stops. There are also specialty orders such as one-cancel-the-other (OCO), one-triggers-an-OCO (OTOCO), and one-triggers-the-other (OTO), allowing traders to setup a conditional order where a filled limit order establishes an OCO attaching both a stop loss and a profit taking level order once the initial position is established. Webull does not offer market-if-touched, market-on-close, or similar orders.
Webull does not offer traders the ability to control tax lots for sales to close long stock positions. Instead, they use the first in and first out (FIFO), methodology. Webull does not offer automated trading, backtesting strategies or the ability to place orders.
Although Webull’s trading technology may be basic, it can get the job done. Webull reports a net price increase of 0.0056 per share and $1 for each option contract. No smart order routing, trading automation, backtesting, or route control are available. This is in line with the broker’s basic approach to keeping costs low.
Webull is a no cost broker, not a low cost broker. They offer commission free trading in stocks, ETFs, and listed options, and they do not charge a fee for account minimums or for their robust platforms and tools. Webull’s margin rates are also competitive. Webull’s commission-free trading means that we don’t charge for trades. However, they must pay Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), transaction fees and other regulatory fees. These fees are usually pennies to fractional pennies per contract. These are Webull’s costs:
- Online trades in equities or ETFs are free of commissions
- Exchange traded options are free of commissions
- No commission on cryptocurrency trading
- Margin is available for both leverage and short sales, and margin rates are based on account size. By breakpoint: Under $25K 6.99%; $100K 6.49%; $250K 5.99%; $500K 5.49%; $1MM 4.99%; $3MM 4.49%; and >$3MM 3.99%
- Money transfers: There is no charge for ACH deposits and withdrawals. Wire Transfers cost $8 for US deposits and $12.5 if you are international. $25 for withdrawals within the US, and $25 for international withdrawals.
- Charges for paper statements: confirmations are $2 for each confirm, account statements are $5 a statement; and the prospectus fee is $2.5 per mailing
How this broker makes money for you and from you
With the race towards no commission trading, understanding how brokerage companies generate revenue has become more opaque. Webull is not afraid to tell investors how they make their money, which allows them provide sophisticated trading platforms and zero-fee trading.
- Payment From Order Flow: Webull is clearly all-in on the continuing race towards no commission trading – even options are free to trade on Webull now – and they are very transparent in stating at the top of its pricing page that PFOF is the primary reason they can offer no commission trading and no fees for access to their well-built platforms. Webull gets an average $0.00024 per share from its order flow and $0.525 per option contract. Webull’s average price execution improvements are $0.0056 per shares and $1 per option contract.
- Interest on Cash: Another important revenue stream for Webull is its ability to generate income from cash in its traders’ accounts, as the company does not pay interest on cash balances. When you have cash in your account, the interest generated by Webull is kept by Webull.
- Stock Lending Program: Webull offers a stock lending program. The investor who lends the securities shares the revenue. The interest paid through the lending program depends entirely on the market demand for your securities.
Account and Research Amenities
Webull provides a wide range of account information and research facilities, including news and fundamental data. This helps traders make informed investment decisions as well as identify stocks to trade. However, Webull does not provide the types of tools and information available at full-service brokers, such as daily market reports or individual analyst reports or in-depth portfolio analysis tools.
Webull has a stock screener, available on the workstation and website but not the mobile app. The screener is limited to stocks and is easy enough to use, but it does not offer all the functionality that rival broker screeners offer. Only the United States, China and Canada can be selected; Webull offers data and charts for US, Honk Kong and Canada markets. However, U.S. account holders have limited access to trading in U.S. market markets. You can choose to filter the U.S. exchanges (NYSE, AMEX and NASDAQ) and you can filter by more that 25 industry sectors, financial data such as EPS and P/E, Dividends and nine pre-set technical indicators, including overbought/oversold, moving average crosses, and overbought/oversold.
Although the technical indicators are simple to use, they are not very comprehensive. We could not screen for stocks that moved beyond 200. Additional filters include a consensus analyst rating of five grades (strong buy/buy, hold/underperform, sell), and whether the stock can be traded with margin. Stocks cannot be screened for SRI (socially responsible investing). A customized search can be saved and converted to a watchlist. Choosing any of the stocks on the search results provides key statistics and financial information and an order window for that stock on the same page.
ETF and Mutual Fund Screener
Webull does not offer an ETF screener, and they do not offer mutual funds on their platform at all.
Webull doesn’t have a screener that can identify potential option trade opportunities. However, they have tools to help you construct the most popular one, two and four leg options strategies (vertical spreads. Straddles/strangles. Butterflies/condors etc.). Select the strategy by using the drop-down menu in the option chain table. You can then bring up the payout graph at maturity for the strategy, and use tools to further customize the strategy through different order types or adjusting the width between strike prices in multi-leg strategies.
Fixed Income Screener
Webull does not offer fixed income on their platform.
Webull built its own charting functionality, and it is a solid offering. The mobile app charting interface is smaller than the web and works well on small screens. Order tickets and alerts can be created directly from charts, and analysis like Bollinger Bands(r), moving and exponential moving averages (MA/EMA), relative strength index (RSI), average trading range (ATR), multiple stochastics variations, and other commonly used analysis can be easily added to a chart. Again, it seems odd that neither the 50, 100, or 200 period MA was included in the set of six defaults in the program.
Webull is a new web-based trading platform that has made waves in the Forex market. Fumi Technology, a Chinese online holding company, operates Webull. It allows clients to buy and sell a variety of virtual assets such as shares, ETFs and derivatives as well as commodities like gold, dogecoin, and shiba coin. You can also get market commentary and trade alerts from industry experts to help you make informed investment decisions. Investors will need to open a demo account to see how the system works and determine if it is suitable for them.
The webull trading app is based on the Java-based software platform that is used for desktop trading platforms. The webull platform allows access to real time quotes of stocks and options as well as to fundamental data such as market depth, price and volume. The webull desktop trading platform can be used on both iOS and Android devices. It comes with over 1,000,000 product images and a wide variety of media files. To use the webull app, first download the free trial web version and install the webull trading platform on your phone. In less than five minutes you are all set and ready to trade from anywhere in the world!
Webull allows traders to buy and sell securities with real money. This means that webull trading does not require any particular expertise in order to execute trades. The app uses sophisticated algorithms and mathematical algorithms to detect good opportunities and prevent losses by analyzing market signals and actions. The app alerts traders immediately if it detects that a security’s peak volume is rising. This allows them to take immediate action before the price moves. The best part is that all trades are fully customizable. Trades can be customized to allow traders to set investment limits, strike amounts, and stop loss types. This allows them to set custom or automatic limits at the time they feel the investment is at risk.
Trading with webull requires a minimum deposit of just $500, and the maximum is Unlimited. Once investors have created an account with webull, they can start depositing funds into their new account. Traders have the option to either hold a ‘buy or’sell’ option. They can also do transactions using cash or credit card transfers. Credit cards are recommended for smaller investments due to the higher transfer fees.
Many people asked us why they should use webull instead of traditional trading platforms. Webull allows investors to do two types of transactions, buying and selling. Traditional trading requires that you wait until the end to complete a transaction. This will be reflected in your profit or loss statement. You can choose the time you want to make a transaction with webull. This will be reflected on your trading Profit and Loss Statement. Additionally, trading with webull will allow you to set a limit to the amount of money you are willing to spend or lose, thereby providing you more control and accountability for the money you are investing.
Another reason why webull is superior to other systems is that the webull financial trading platform provides investors with real-time protection from third parties. Webull’s counterparty protection feature makes it impossible for anyone to modify, change, or close your accounts except the authorized user. Therefore, webull provides you with true asset protection, which is much better than any system that does not provide this type of protection. We can also tell investors that by using webull, they will not be legally obligated to pay taxes on the gains from their investments in the U.S., as webull contracts and investment deals are not considered income for the taxable year.
Many traders use webull as their main trading platform, but there are many others who also use it for back-testing, fundamental tests, and even for their margin calls and transactions. In addition, investors can also use webull for their custom trading needs. For instance, some brokers provide webull trading as a free service to their clients. Some webull brokers may charge a small fee for this service. Webull is a great product for investors large and small because of all the benefits it offers.
Overall, webull is an excellent platform for new traders, as well as experienced ones, because it provides a low-cost, hands-free, transparent way to trade on the equity market. The investor can decide how much he/she trades because there are no fees or commissions to pay. Webull is hard to beat.