Best Free Investing Platform? (Webull VS Robinhood 2018)

Investing Simple is affiliated with Webull. This relationship does not influence our opinion of this platform.

Over the last decade or more, the commission costs for trading stocks have tremendously decreased. Now, we are at a point where commission free trading is available on many different platforms. For the average retail investor, there has never been a better time to invest with these free cutting edge platform. These advances in technology and systems have allowed platforms such as Webull and Robinhood to thrive. These are two of the most popular free investing platforms out there today. In this article, we are going to compare the Webull and Robinhood platforms. We will be identifying where each platform shines as well as where each platform could improve.

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What Is Webull?

Webull is a commission free stock and ETF trading platform. Webull is designed for the active trader who is looking for a more dynamic user interface. Webull has a variety of features that benefit traders such as technical indicators, research agency ratings, financial calendars and free margin trading as well as short selling. With easy access to margin, research tools, and live data, Webull has built an ideal platform for active traders. Check out our detailed review of Webull here.

Webull is a platform that is designed for the intermediate trader who already has some experience with the stock market. If you are a complete beginner, you might experience information overload. If you are a somewhat experienced trader, Webull will give you all of the data you will likely need.

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Webull Trading App

Webull Free Stock Promotion!

If you sign up via our link, you will get a free stock worth up to $1,000! You don’t need to fund the account to get the stock, you just have to open it.

Click here to open an account with Webull!

Webull Features

Technical Indicators: Webull has a variety of technical indicators available on the platform. You can choose from up to 22 technical indicators such as moving averages, relative strength indexes and more. Here is the full list in our complete Webull review.

Virtual Trading Simulator: Webull has a useful feature called the virtual trading simulator. This feature lets you create a virtual portfolio with fake money to test out strategies before risking real money. This is an ideal feature for someone just starting out, who may need to gain more investing knowledge and know how before investing real money.

Smart Alerts: Webull lets you set a variety of alerts for different holdings. You can be alerted when a price level is hit, or a rate of change has hit a defined level. There are also alerts for volume levels or changes, this can be useful for traders get a sense of where the stock may be headed in the short term.

Financial Calendar: The financial calendar feature keeps you informed on all the latest and upcoming financial news. Important events such as upcoming IPOs, dividend payouts, and earnings releases are all provided to you in a calendar format on the Webull platform.

Margin Trading: Webull allows margin trading on its platform to certain users. You must have a minimum account balance of $2,000 to be approved for margin trading. Below are the margin interest rates charged by Webull…

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Webull Margin Rates

After Hours Trading: Webull offers after hours and premarket trading. You can trade securities from 4 am to 8 pm on the Webull platform offering more flexibility in placing trades.

Commission Free Short Selling: There are no trading commissions to short a stock in Webull. Short selling occurs in a margin account, but all trades are completely free.

What is Robinhood?

Robinhood is one of the most well known commission free trading platforms. It is easy to use and targets the beginner investor who is looking to save money by avoiding commission costs. Robinhood allows you to trade stocks, ETFs, cryptocurrencies and options commission free. The Robinhood user interface is simple and digestible and provides a good user experience.

What you will find after using Robinhood for a while is that the platform becomes very limiting. While it is easy for a beginner to use, you will probably outgrow it in a few months. The lack of sophisticated charting and technical/fundamental metrics is a common complaint among Robinhood users. On the other hand, Robinhood was designed to be a beginner friendly platform.

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Robinhood Features

Commission Free Trading: Robinhood allows users to trade stocks, ETFs, options, and cryptocurrency completely free. All investors benefit from saving money on fees. This is specifically useful for active traders who make frequent day to day trades.

Simple Interface: Robinhood is known for its user friendly interface. Its application is easy to use and not overwhelming like other platforms can be. This may be a benefit for certain investors who are just starting out and would like a simple and easy to use platform. For investors looking to conduct more research and build trading strategies, you may find the Robinhood platform is fairly limited.

Robinhood Gold: Robinhood offers a subscription service called Robinhood Gold. In the Robinhood Gold platform you have the ability to trade pre and post market starting at 9 am and ending at 6 pm. Robinhood Gold lets you trade on margin once your account has a $2,000 minimum balance. Robinhood Gold costs $10 to $15 per month for this service.

Webull VS Robinhood

Commission Free TradingYesYes
Margin TradingYesOffered on Robinhood Gold subscription $10-$15 per month
Account TypesIndividual TaxableIndividual Taxable
Account Minimum$0$0
Short SellingYesNo
Technical IndicatorsYesNo
Virtual Trading SimulatorYesNo
Trading PlatformApp based, Desktop coming in 2019App and Desktop
Investment ResearchYesBasic, No
InvestmentsStocks, ETFsStocks, ETFs, Crypto, Options
Analyst RatingsYesNo
After Hours Trading4am to 8pm ESTOffered on Robinhood Gold subscription $10-$15 per month

The Verdict

Webull and Robinhood have a similar approach to a commission free brokerage, but both have a variety of different features. Webull is still relatively small with just over a million downloads on Android, but is growing significantly. That being said, we believe Webull has a stronger platform than Robinhood for the active trader. The variety of features such as research tools, technical indicators, and free after/pre market trading puts it above Robinhood in user experience. Robinhood may be a good platform for someone who is a beginner investor and wants a simple and easy to use platform. Both platforms are free so you can give both a try and see which one meets your needs.

Webull Free Stock Promotion!

If you sign up via our link, you will get a free stock worth up to $1,000! You don’t need to fund the account to get the stock, you just have to open it.

Click here to open an account with Webull!

Webull Review 2018: Best Commission Free Stock Trading Platform?

Investing Simple is affiliated with Webull. This relationship does not influence our opinion of this platform.

A number of online brokerages and investing apps have popped up over the last few years. Some of them offering great platforms to their users, others being frustrating and unbearable to use. Webull is a new platform that has great potential for being the next big free trading platform. This app has not been talked about as much as platforms like Robinhood, but it should not be overlooked. In this article we will outline our experience with Webull as well as the strengths and weaknesses of this platform.

Platform Highlights

  • 100% commission free trading
  • Free short selling
  • Free after hours/extended hours trading
  • Easy access to margin
  • Research oriented platform with many advanced features

If you sign up via our link, you will get a free stock worth up to $1,000! You don’t need to fund the account to get the stock, you just have to open it.

Click here to open an account with Webull!

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Webull Investing App

What Is Webull?

Webull is a mobile trading platform designed to save you money and get you the trading data you need. Webull accomplishes this goal by offering completely free trading of stocks and ETFs. By offering real time data and the most current quotation prices, Webull provides traders with a sufficient platform for trading directly on their phone. Webull is a platform designed for the research oriented active trader.

Where other investing apps are often “dumbed down” and oversimplified, Webull offers access to more advanced tools on the platform. Some of these features include virtual trading simulators, financial calendars, rating agency reports, technical indicators, and after hours trading. For some, this is a pro! For others, this is a con.

If you are completely new to the stock market and investing, Webull is probably going to be too complicated for you. It might be like trying to take a sip of water from a fire hose. For those who have already gained investing experience and used competing platforms like Robinhood, Webull could be a breath of fresh air. Many of the features missing from Robinhood have found a home on the Webull investing platform.

What Are The Features?

Real Time Market Data: Webull offers real time market data for all US markets. This ensures you are viewing consistent real prices in real time, making sure you are making the right investment decisions based on accurate data. This feature is extremely important for active traders who need price accuracy down to the penny.

You may also have access to real time global market data on the Webull platform. There is a monthly fee for this feature. This is charged on a monthly subscription basis and the fee differs by market.

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Webull Real Time Market Data

News Stream: Webull offers real time financial news through the news stream feature. Articles from Reuters and Bloomberg and other financial institutions are available through this feature. This can be extremely helpful in getting the most up to date news articles and possibly making important trades on breaking news for specific companies. This feature provides a single location to view financial news as well as providing a mixed collection of high quality content giving you a variety of different points of view on specific topics.

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Webull News Stream

Virtual Trading Simulator: Webull offers a virtual trading simulator on their platform in order to learn new investing strategies without any risk. This is a valuable feature if you are trying out new trading strategies you’ve never used before. It can also be helpful in testing out a simulated portfolio before risking any real money. Anyone who is new to investing should first start out by using a trading simulator. This way you can gain experience and knowledge without taking any real risk. Webull is one of the first platforms to offer a built in trading simulator!

Agency Ratings: Another feature offered by Webull is the ability to track and see professional analyst ratings on certain stocks. Rated stocks will have a number of ratings by professional rating agencies and firms. They will rank the company as a buy, sell, or hold and sometimes ratings in between.

The screenshot below shows a company with 40 analyst ratings as well as the trend over time. Institutional analyst ratings can give you an idea of what Wall Street is saying about a certain company or fund.

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Webull Analyst Ratings

Smart Alerts: Webull gives you the ability to set a variety of smart alerts that will notify you if a specific holding hits a defined price, moves a defined percentage, or has reached a specific volume level. These smart alerts can provide a system for executing trades at a certain price level or after a series of volume or price changes. Tools like this allow traders to be more effective and efficient when trying to execute trades over a period of time.

Financial Calendar: Webull offers a financial calendar that keeps you informed on upcoming financial news for the month. The financial calendar tools keeps track of upcoming IPOs, earnings releases, and which companies are about to pay out dividends. This tool provides a consolidated calendar of events, keeping you informed on upcoming market events all on one screen.

Margin Trading: Webull offers easy access to margin trading on the platform. You must have a minimum account balance of $2,000 to be approved for margin trading. When trading on margin you are virtually pledging the assets within your account as collateral to borrow money and invest it in more securities. Webull will lend you these funds for a fee at a specific interest rate. If your account drops below $2,000 you run the risk of a margin call and forced liquidation of your funds. Margin creates leverage which could increase potential returns, but carries significant risk as it could also amplify losses.

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Webull Margin Rates

Technical Indicators: Webull prides itself on the usability of its platform for serious traders. Many traders use technical price indicators to indicate ideal buy and sell levels. The platform gives you access to 22 technical indicators for developing trading strategies.

Here is the list of technical indicators on Webull…

  • Moving Average (MA)
  • Exponential Moving Average (EMA)
  • Bollinger Bands (BOLL)
  • IC
  • Volume (VOL)
  • Moving Average Convergence Divergence (MACD)
  • KDJ
  • Relative Strength Index (RSI)
  • Rate Of Change (ROC)
  • Displaced Moving Average (DMA)
  • Fast Stochastics (FSTO)
  • Keltner Channels (KC)
  • Aroon Indicator (AROON)
  • Trend Strength Indicator (ADX)
  • Average True Range (ATR)
  • Commodity Channel Index (CCI)
  • CC
  • Detrended Price Oscillator (DPO)
  • Ultimate Oscillator (UOS)
  • Directional Movement Index (DMI)
  • Heikin Ashi
  • Money Flow Index (MFI)

As you can imagine, this can be quite overwhelming for a complete beginner. Webull is not a trading platform that is designed for beginners. The ideal user for Webull is someone who is actively trading with some prior experience with trading and technical analysis. If you are brand new to the stock market, you should consider a more beginner friendly app.

After Hours Trading: Webull offers after hours trading completely free. You can trade from 4 am to 8 pm, giving you more flexibility when placing trades. Robinhood also offers extended hours trading, but is limited to a shorter window from 9 am to 6 pm.

Commission Free Short Selling: Webull is one of the only platforms that allows you to place long and short trades commission free. Short selling will have to take place in a margin account, but you will not pay any commission when placing these trades.

What Are The Fees?

All buys and sells on Webull are 100% free, including short selling!

There are fees charged by the SEC and FINRA for each trade. These fees are charged on every trade across all brokerages. The SEC charges a $13 fee on $1 million of principal (sells only) with a minimum fee of $.01 and FINRA charges $0.000119 per share (sells only), a minimum of $.01, and no greater than $5.95.

Fees For Stock Transfers: ACATS Incoming: $0; ACATS Outgoing: $75

Account Types: Individual taxable brokerage accounts, eligible margin accounts

Requirements And Customer Service: You must be at least 18 years of age and have a valid social security number to open an account with Webull. Webull is one of the only free platforms that offers customer service over the phone as well as through email and a live chat feature.

How To Open A Webull Account

  1. Download Webull App and sign up for Webull. Use this link to get a free stock worth up to $1000!
  2. Tap “Trade” tab to start opening account.
  3. Choose your account type.
  4. Provide your information.
  5. Accept the Terms and Conditions.

Once you have submitted your application, you will be notified of approval by email approximately within one hour. If you use the link above, you will get your free stock as soon as your application is approved.

Webull also has a phone number so you can speak to an actual human being about your account. One common complaint with Robinhood is the lack of customer service and the inability to speak to someone about your account. With Webull, you have the option to call them directly if you do not understand something or need a question answered.

Is Webull Safe For Investors?

Webull is a member of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC), which insures investor’s accounts up to $500,000 ($250,000 in cash). Webull also has additional coverage under its clearing firm Apex. The plan provides an additional $150 million in coverage for securities and cash, subject to a maximum of $37.5 million for each individual investor’s securities ($900,000 in cash).

You can read the BrokerCheck report for Webull here.

Webull Strengths

  1. Advanced charts and research tools.
  2. Free short selling and extended hours trading.
  3. News stream.
  4. Free trading simulator.
  5. Phone and live chat support.

Webull Weaknesses

  1. Web-based platform is currently limited to live quotes. Webull is aiming to add trading to their website in 2019.
  2. App design needs improvement. It can feel complex and overwhelming to use.
  3. Not for beginner investors. Many of the features are for more experienced traders.
  4. No retirement accounts.
  5. No prebuilt portfolios.

The Verdict

Webull is an excellent platform for active traders who would like access to a moderately advanced trading platform without paying a monthly subscription or commission fees on trades. The features offered by Webull such as technical indicators, price alerts, and commission free trading all benefit the active trader. The amount of research you can perform on the Webull platform is also a tremendous advantage. Webull would not be an ideal platform for a beginner investor. Most of the features and analysis on the platform may be overwhelming for someone just starting out. Webull does not provide any prebuilt portfolios like many other roboadvisors do, such as M1 Finance and Betterment. Webull may not be an ideal platform for a passive investor, but they are an ideal trading platform for the on the go trader.

If you sign up via our link, you will get a free stock worth up to $1,000! You don’t need to fund the account to get the stock, you just have to open it.

Click here to open an account with Webull!