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Trading 212 Broker Review

Review By: Alan Little
Review Updated: 2022-05-09
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4.2
Rating
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CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high degree of risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 77% 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.

Bottom Line Summary

Trading212 is a no-nonsense, no-commission stock brokerage firm that caused a stir in London when it launched its no-commission approach. The broker also offers CFD trading in stocks, indices, commodities, and forex, but trading in cryptocurrencies is not supported.

The firm has been active since 2004, but its appeal has caught the day-trading wave that was generated by the COVID pandemic. Revenues have jumped 318%, as have costs.

There is a considerable backlog in on-boarding new clients, but a new funding round and management additions are addressing the current situation

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Overall Ratings
4.2
Trading 212 Fees
4.5
Trading 212 Accounts and Membership
3.5
Deposit and Withdrawal
4.4
Trading 212 Trading Platforms
4.7
Mobile Trading App
4.7
Markets and Products
4.1
Market Research
3.5
Customer Service
4
Education
4.5

Trading 212 broker features

Feature Trading 212
Minimum deposit: €1
Withdrawal fee amount: No fees
Inactivity fee charged (Y/N): N
Max leverage: 30:1
Spread from: N/A
Number of instruments: 1785
Year founded: 2004
Time to open account: 1-2 business days
Demo account provided (Y/N): Y
Countries of regulation: European Union, United Kingdom
Products offered:

Trading 212 pros and cons

Pros
  • No commissions on stocks or ETFs
  • Easy account opening process with minimum deposits of £1 or €1
  • Intuitive, easy-to-use trading app
  • Low fees and tight spreads
Cons
  • No trading in cryptocurrencies
  • No social or copy-trading
  • No phone support
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Review Sections:

Who are Trading 212?

Trading 212, founded in 2004 in Sofia, Bulgaria, is a UK-based, FCA regulated broker that specialises in no-commission stock and EFT trades. It was the first firm to make such an offer, and it supplements this offering with a CFD platform for trading stocks, indices, forex pairs, and commodities. It is a small brokerage, but it saw its annual revenues grow from £30 million to £124 million in 2021. Two Bulgarians, Borislav Nedialkov and Ivan Ashminov, own the firm and recently raised nearly £14 million to help with growing pains.

Trading 212 is an innovator that is witnessing a hyper-growth phase and the problems that can accompany such success. For the past year, it has been struggling to process a considerable backlog in new customers and dealing with increasing operating costs, as well. The firm, however, has focused on its stock program, the reason for its success.

Its website and trading platforms have been a bit sluggish at times, but loyalists swear by its mobile trading app, extensive stock portfolio, and low cost structured trading environment. Hopefully, a new team of management will get its hands around the current problems and continue the firm’s success story.

Trading 212 Fees

4.5
Rating

Forex fees

When conducting an order in a foreign currency, the instrument’s value will have a +0.15% FX fee added. Upon order submission, the trader can see a breakdown of the precise amount to be deducted on the Review Order page. The trade value will be converted in accordance with the spot exchange rate.

CFD fees

Spreads on CFDs tend to be tight on average. Here are a few examples from the broker site:

Apple – 0.19, Nasdaq 100 – 0, Gold – 0.83, and EUR/USD – 0.0002

CFDs also carry an overnight SWAP interest fee that can be a credit or a debit, but there are zero commissions.

Negative balance protection is another plus, and margin requirements vary by the instrument traded – from as low as 3.33% for major currency pairs to 20% for stocks.

Note that the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) currently bans CFD trading in the UK. The risk disclaimer for Trading 212 states that 77% of CFD traders lose money. If the firm manages its positions correctly and hedges its risks, it can pay the 23% of winners and still generate a profit from the transaction to cover a portion of its other operating expenses.

Deposit fees

Deposits are free for bank transfers or wires, and also for most local payment processors up to the first $£€2,000 deposited. For these items from credit or debit cards, Google Pay, Apple Pay or Skrill, 0.7% applies after the £/€2,000 threshold. As mentioned, there is also a currency conversion charge of 0.15%. Crucially, there are no withdrawal fees at Trading 212.

Non Trading fees

Inactivity fees

Traders will be encouraged to learn that Trading 212 does not charge account inactivity fees.

trading 212 website transparent fees

Trading 212 Accounts and Membership

3.5
Rating

Opening an account with Trading 212 is easy and straightforward. There are numerous ‘Open Account’ buttons throughout the website to initiate the process. Similarly, you may also download the broker’s mobile app to get started on your mobile device. There is, however, a problem with the firm’s popularity that you will encounter. The firm is small. Its popularity has skyrocketed, and it presently has a ‘Wait list’ to join its membership.

Unfortunately, accessing a free demo system or completing the process through to making a trade is delayed for an indefinite amount of time. Staff have been hired to address the problem and additional funding should help.

There are several deposit methods to choose from, but a simple bank overnight transfer is the cheapest way to go. Other payment schemes may entail a charge when you deposit more than £/€2,000. Minimum deposit requirements are £1 or €1.

The last step is to submit private identity information. All brokers are required to comply with Anti-Money Laundering and Know-Your-Customer statutes. Approval can come quickly or in one-to-three days, if there is a problem. Once approved, you will have two accounts – ‘Invest’ and ‘CFD’. Each platform has its own portfolio of asset offerings and fee details, as described in the ‘fees’ section of this Trading 212 review.

Deposit and Withdrawal

4.4
Rating

Minimum deposits are £1 or €1 for the Invest account and £10 and €10 for the CFD account. If you use other payment service providers for the Invest account, then amounts beyond £/€2000 will incur a charge of 0.7%.

Deposit fees and options

Deposits are booked when received, and withdrawals are processed immediately after the request is made. There are no charges for making a withdrawal, which can be posted to your bank account in one day or more, depending upon the banking service used. Check with your bank for those times. Withdrawals can be initiated from the trading platform, and there is no need for a crypto wallet since trading crytpo on Trading 212 is no longer provided.

Deposit methods include the following:

How do you withdraw money?.

Traders can make their withdrawals via the same method used to deposit their funds. For security reasons, the total amount permitted for withdrawal may be limited to the number of deposits made with that source

Trading 212 Trading Platforms

4.7
Rating

trading 212 trustpilot review score

Trading 212 offers two proprietary trading platforms, one desktop version and the other, a Trading 212 app. Client ratings are on the high side for ease of use and effectiveness, as evidenced by the 4.5 out of 5 stars on the Trustpilot site for nearly 18,000 Trading 212 reviews.

One the broker’s trading platform, a typical screen lays out watchlist items in the left margin with charting for your chosen asset on the right. One click can bring up an order screen where market, limit/stop, or a One-cancels-the-other (OCO) order types can be chosen. Opening and closing positions can be handled with a single click.

There are an abundance of chart indicators – over 45 – accompanied by a host of chart drawing tools. Alerts and sentiment indices are also part of the package, and the broker adds another clever tool, which it calls ‘Pies & AutoInvest’.

Trading 212 does not have social copy trading, but there is a library of ‘Pies’, its term for a diversified portfolio. You may select items to form a pie from the stocks and ETFs in the Invest account. Once you are pleased with your ‘slices’, AutoInvest will then build your portfolio for you, as deposits are made over time.

Mobile Trading App

4.7
Rating

It is difficult to find fault with either trading platform that Trading 212 offers. Clients rave about its mobile trading app. The Google Play store alone highlights that over 10 million downloads of the app have been made.

Ease of use is the primary claim. The mobile version also has the same number of indicators and charting tools as does the online desktop version, but it also has one other unique feature. If an upcoming event can impact your position significantly, it is highlighted on your screen with a display of potential impacts. All in all, the Trading 212 mobile app is a winner.

Markets and Products

4.1
Rating

Trading 212 provides two different accounts to access its various trading instruments.

Within the ‘Invest’ account context, the firm boasts over 10,000 stocks and ETFs. The Trading 212 CFD platform is a bit more limited, but it sports a broader variety. Stocks are just under 2,000, while forex pairs are approaching 200. Commodities and indices are roughly 30 and 36, respectively.

The one drawback is that cryptocurrencies are not provided, nor are bonds, mutual funds or options. The firm also does not support copy trading. In addition, a Trading 212 stocks and shares ISA is also available to users tax-free.

Market Research

3.5
Rating

There is room for improvement in this category, but the thinking is that most traders have their favourite sights for market analysis. Trading 212 does provide a link to news headlines, forum posts and sentiment data from its client base. It also produces a hot-list of movers and shakers. An economic event calendar and a bare-bones daily market analysis rounds out the offering.

Customer Service

4
Rating

The broker’s website claims a 29 second average response time, but there is no published Trading 212 contact number to call or live chat button to click. Under the ‘Contact’ section, there is an email form with space for your query, and we suspect that these contact messages are handled quickly.

Previous iterations of this firm did include live chat, but the current backlog, which some people in the know have estimated to be two or more months, has more than likely forced the issue. Once again, responses are quick, and relevant information is the nature of the responses.

Address: 18 Santorinis, 4004, Limassol, Cyprus

Education

4.5
Rating

At last count, there were 851,000 subscribers, and the site receives high praise from those that review this type of delivery mechanism.

trading 212 youtube account

Safety

Is Trading 212 regulated?

Trading 212’a founders set up shop originally in Sofia, Bulgaria. A small entity remains in that country, where it is registered and regulated by the Financial Supervision Commission. Its primary office is located in London, where it is registered in both the UK and Wales and regulated by the FCA. Lastly, it is also registered in Cyprus and in compliance with the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC). The firm is global in nature and markets to many other jurisdictions, but not to the United States or Canada.

Client deposits are also segregated from operating accounts in Tier 1 bank accounts, and a second layer of protection exists in the UK in case of insolvency on behalf of the broker.

The UK Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) covers up to a maximum of £85,000. Personal identity and payment information is encrypted using the latest in security technology, as are all transaction records for your account. Security staff also monitors all traffic for potential threats from illicit hacking organisations.

Trading 212 FAQs

How does Trading 212 make money?

Trading 212 has no commissions, and fees are minimal. It makes its money from its tight spreads and from managing its net positions in its CFD portfolio. Profits from CFD trading are the net of loss amounts recovered from client losing trades and gains paid out for winning ones. A CFD broker will typically hedge its risk exposure on an ongoing basis to make money over time.

Is Trading 212 regulated?

Yes, Trading 212 complies with the FCA in the UK, CySEC in Europe, and the Financial Supervision Commission in Bulgaria.

How do you sign up with Trading 212?

You can sign up with Trading 212 in two ways. The first is via the website, where there are displayed buttons for getting started. Secondly, you can download the broker’s trading app onto your mobile device. In both cases, enter your country of residence, your email address, and a secure password. In order to invest, you will need to supply personal identity information, too.

Does Trading 212 offer any bonuses?

In keeping with current regulations in the UK, Trading 212 does not offer marketing bonuses as an enticement to open an account with the firm.

Is Trading 212 good for beginners?

Beginners have flocked to Trading 212, primarily due to its easy-to-use mobile trading app and its abundance of training materials on its YouTube channel.

What to do if Trading 212 is down?

Trading 212, in accordance with regulatory requirements, has a contingency plan to cover any business outages by backing up its operations at multiple sites.

How do you close a position on Trading 212’s platform?

Closing a position is as easy as touching your screen or moving your mouse cursor over an open position. An execution order arises, awaiting execution at your discretion.

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