Trading 212 Review
If you intend to trade in the markets, you must make sure that you find the right broker for your needs.
Depending on where you’re from, what you want to trade, and what you value most in a broker, there are only a handful of brokers that will serve you best. If Trading 212 has gotten your attention and you’re considering opening an account with them, you’re in the right place.
This review will give you a general idea of what Trading 212 has to offer and help you decide if it’s the right trading platform for you before you open an account there.
Let’s dive into it…
What is Trading 212?
Trading 212 is a UK broker that offers financial trading services all over the world.
Founded in Bulgaria and headquartered in London since 2004, the broker now has around 1.5 million clients and 3.5 billion euros in client assets around the world. Its mobile trading app has been downloaded more than 14 billion times and it has been the #1 in the UK since 2016.
Though it started as a forex broker, it has grown enough to offer other products too like stocks, ETFs, commodities, and CFDs.
- Trading stocks and ETFs are commission-free
- Opening an account is easy and fast
- Both web and mobile platforms are easy to use
- Access to over 1,780 symbols for CFD/Forex trading
- Insurance up to EUR 1,000,000 by Lloyd’s of London in excess of up to EUR 20,000 from Investors Compensation Fund (ICF)
- Not as many product offerings as other brokers offer
- Some users consider the forex commissions high compared to what other brokers charge
- You cannot change your account’s currency to a different one than your country’s
Is Trading 212 Safe?
Trading 212 is very safe to use for trading as it is regulated by the FCA (Financial Conduct Authority), the CySEC (Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission), and the Bulgarian FSC (Financial Supervision Commission).
Under the Investor Compensation Fund plan and the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS), the broker will compensate each account up to 20,000 euros and £85 000, respectively, in the case of insolvency.
On top of that, Lloyd’s of London provides additional insurance up to 1 million euros per account.
Some other good indicators that it’s safe to use Trading 212 are:
- Its lack of debt
- Continuous profits year after year since it was founded
- Strong liquidity to weather crises
All in all, top-tier regulation, solid insurance schemes, and a long track record of operating make this broker one of the safest to use out there.
When you first attempt to open a Trading 212 account, you will realize you have the option to choose between two account types.
Let’s take a look at both of them, one by one…
Trading 212 Invest
Trading 212 Invest, is for trading equities like stocks and ETFs. If you go with this type, that’s all you are going to be allowed to trade.
For beginners, Trading 212 Invest is a great account to get started with because of the far lower risk.
Trading 212 CFD
Trading 212 CFD allows you to trade CFDs (Contracts For Difference) on products like forex, stocks, indices, and commodities. But as with the other account, you’re restricted to only trade one type of security (CFDs in this case).
Trading 212 CFD is for more knowledgeable and risk-tolerant traders because CFD trading involves the use of leverage to trade. You can lose a large percentage of your invested capital if you don’t know what you’re doing.
Platform & Features
Trading 212 has a web and mobile trading platform for you to use. They both have a very intuitive design that is also suitable for those with not a lot of trading experience.
But a naturally following disadvantage is that you can not customize it, which may be a big deal for sophisticated traders.
The broker also offers very clearly structured portfolio and fee reports. This way, seeing your charged/earned interest, your cash balance, or profit/loss is only a few clicks away.
We should note, though, that there seems to be a lack of exportation feature here.
To access your reports, simply click on your username and then select “Report”.
Alerts & Notifications
As for notifications, the platform gives you the option to set price alerts. To do so, just select an asset and then click the “Alert” icon.
Here’s a list of all of the order types that Trading 212 offers:
- Stop limit (Only with an Invest/ISA account)
- OCO (Only with a CFD account)
Trading 212 also allows you to invest passively while staying true to your portfolio construction.
With AutoInvest, the broker’s autotrading feature, you will be able to automatically invest your funds according to your target allocations. Imagine how troublesome it would be to manually calculate what portion of your funds should go to each slice of your portfolio pie.
For instance, let’s say you fund your account with EUR 1000 and your pie is divided into 4 slices with equal target allocations (25%). If you want to invest that money according to your portfolio structure, AutoInvest will allow you to invest EUR 250 into each slice.
This is pretty convenient for investors who want to frequently contribute to their retirement funds.
Mobile Trading App
Trading 212’s mobile trading app is quite user-friendly and the order, search, and alert features work as well with it as they do with the web platform.
It offers a two-step authentication process to ensure security over your account and you also have the option to set a biometric authentication requirement if you will.
As for availability, you can download it for both Android and iOS and in the same languages you can select on the web platform.
Lastly, you can receive price alerts as push notifications. Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be an option to be notified via email or SMS.
Fees & Commissions
Trading 212 Invest
A Trading 212 Invest account allows you to trade stocks and ETFs completely free of charge. Just bear in mind that if the stock/ETF is in a different currency than your base one, you will incur a 0.15% currency conversion fee for each transaction.
When you deposit money via a debit/credit card or digital wallet, you will pay no fees until the total deposited amount reaches EUR 2000, but a 0.7% fee will apply thereafter. Note that you will have to deposit at least 10 euros each time for Trading 212 to accept it.
If you must deposit a large amount, it may be less expensive to wire transfer which will cost 10 euros instead. But check on what your bank charges for wire transfers before you go with this option.
There are no withdrawal fees for this account type.
Trading 212 CFD
If you go with a Trading 212 CFD account, the transaction cost for Forex will depend on the underlying pair as each one has a different spread. But the broker charges a standard 0.5% conversion fee.
You will not be charged anything for depositing funds but a minimum deposit amount of 10 euros is required.
If you leave a position open overnight, you will be charged an interest SWAP.
What can you trade on Trading 212?
Let us now examine all of the assets that Trading 212 has available for trading…
Trading 212 Invest
With Trading 212 Invest, you can trade stocks and ETFs for free. Its offerings here may not be as many as other online brokers offer, but there are thousands of them so chances are you will find what you’re looking for; especially if it’s listed on a major exchange.
Trading 212 CFD
With Trading 212 CFD, you get access to CFDs (contracts for difference) which are the type of asset that Trading 212 started offering when it was founded back in 2005.
You can buy CFDs on forex, stocks, indices, and commodities. The assets available for CFD trading are thousands.
Note: A contract for difference is an agreement between a buyer and a seller that stipulates that the buyer or seller will pay the other party the difference between the opening and closing price of an underlying security.
Who pays whom is determined by the direction of the underlying security’s price. If you buy a CFD on a stock that you think is going to appreciate in value, whoever sold you the CFD will have to pay you the difference between the price the stock was trading at when you bought the CFD and the price it had when you closed your position.
No problem if you don't want this. I just thought that it may be useful for beginners.
Trading 212 Customer Support
Customer support on Trading 212 is very good both in regards to their process for resolving your issue and availability.
You can get in touch with them via live chat or email. Phone support is not available, unfortunately. The bright side is that you can contact them 24/7.
Just bear in mind that you will be asked to fill out a form if you require support through email. But that’s good since your question can be answered by going through the relevant articles that will be recommended once you fill out the form.
How to Open an Account
You can open an account with Trading 212 by simply following the below steps:
- Enter the country of your residence along with your personal details (email, birthday, etc.)
- Enter your tax information (tax ID, the country you pay taxes in, etc.)
- Choose the account type you’re interested in (Trading 212 Invest or Trading 212 CFD) and your base currency
- Answer the questions related to your financial situation, employment status, and trading experience
- Accept the terms and conditions and verify your identity/residency to activate your account
Regarding that last step, here are the documents you will need to provide to activate your account:
- A national ID, your passport, or driver's license to verify your identity
- A bank statement or utility bill not older than 3 months to verify your residency
How to Trade Stocks on Trading 212
Trading on the platform is very easy. After you open a Trading 212 Invest account, here are the steps you need to follow to buy a stock:
- Let us say you want to buy stock in Tesla. To find the stock, click the magnifying glass and type in “TSLA”, the stock’s ticker symbol.
- Now, you will be given the option to select the order type you want. If you want to keep things simple, just go with the default type “market order”, which is going to allow you to buy the stock at the current price it is trading at.
- Next, choose the number of shares you want to buy; this along with the price you are going to buy the stock at will determine how much you’re going to invest in the company. Therefore, examine the total price you’re about to invest before you confirm the order later.
- Lastly, hit “Buy” and confirm the order after you review the details.
And that’s basically it! It’s only a matter of seconds for your order to be executed if you selected the market type and the market is open. If you don’t do it during market hours, your order will be executed as soon as the market opens.
Now, let’s go over the steps you need to follow to sell the shares you bought:
- Hit the icon that looks like a pie that is positioned exactly next to the magnifying glass icon. Now, you will be able to access all of your holdings of your portfolio.
- Using our previous example, just select the Tesla position and then hit “Sell”.
- Next, the platform will present you the same window that it showed you when you bought the stock. Here, you can choose the number of shares you would like to sell.
- After you select an amount, just hit the “Send Sell Order” button to confirm the order.
And now that you know how to buy and sell shares on Trading 212, you’re ready to start trading!
Trading 212 is a very reputable broker with a specialization in CFD and forex trading. But it surely has something to offer stock and ETF traders too.
In addition, its well-designed and user-friendly platform will allow any kind of trader, novice or expert, to have a smooth trading experience. On top of that, keeping track of your performance and the fees is quite easy with reports you can view at any time.
And the fact that Trading 212 is regulated by top-tier regulators makes it very safe to open an account with.
All in all, you can’t really go wrong with this broker. Especially if you are looking for a wide variety of currency pairs and commission-free trading of equities.
But as a last precaution, make sure that you are opening an account with the ideal broker by using our free broker-finder tool. Just spend a minute to anonymously answer a few questions such as your trading needs and where you’re based. Then, the tool will provide you with a few brokers that will fulfill your situation and criteria.
Find your ideal broker and get started trading with a platform that suits your needs today!