Freetrade vs Trading 212

Hi, I’ve been investing for little over a year now using Trading 212 as my platform of choice. I recently discovered Freetrade and have given them a go and I must say their UI is much cleaner and accessible. Their app is definitely leagues ahead of Trading 212. The fees however is where things fall down. Trading 212 offer me access to markets beyond U.K./US such as Germany and France… they also offer an Investment ISA for free and also now have automated pie investing. In light of all this, why should I switch to Freetrade considering they charge for features I already get for free and have less stocks to invest in. Thanks!


Honestly I am using both and only using Freetrade for tickers that Trading212 doesn’t have… I am testing Freetrade plus and as much as I like the UI, it really doesn’t offer much than other platforms don’t have already.

Also, today is the second time in less than a week that they have massive issue handling orders. This is rendering the platform unsuitable for day-trading…

To give more perspective


You will always find somewhere which will do anything cheaper. But doesn’t mean it’s better. I’m glad that Freetrade isn’t competing on price alone.


This chart is so out of date!

Shares wrong
ETFs wrong
Fractional shares wrong
Pending orders wrong
Rankings wrong
Fees not up to date!


Good question.

Theres definitely a few things to consider. T212 has been around a lot longer, upwards of 15 years I believe? though as I understand it was predominantly CFD trading until more recently.

One of the concerns I have for example is that 212 may hold your assets directly and not in a nominee company which puts up the question of the security of your assets should the company have issues. Normally these would be held completely separately so they’re segregated from the company. their terms and conditions state that they may be held with a nominee, other custodian or by T212.

I also feel that Freetrade company structure is a bit more transparent.

Freetrade has lots of work and lots of features to come, there’s no denying that, however I am feeling a lot more comfortable with Freetrade direction and road to profitability.

212 has a lot of features, and it does work well but im not sure id put my pension there. Thats perhaps just more personal preference due to some of those small issues I mentioned above than the technical capability of the platform its self.

Why do people use Vanguard when 212 offers the same funds for ‘free’?


What do they charge for?

I only use FT for an ISA, I have several main accounts with Interactive Brokers and mostly trade US markets. I am questioning paying FT’s fee when I don’t even get basic limit orders included and I resent paying 45 pips each way for FX in 2020. I trade at market bid/offer with IB.

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I dont think day traders are their target


Wanted to comment but got lost in their fee structure.

How much are you paying per trade?

For IB?

I use the pro service so it depends. There is a free version, but (like every free service) you don’t get as good fills (according to people who have tried both). The cost of the fills > $1 exec fee.

As an example I can buy 100 MSFT shares (USD 22,327 MV) for a max of $1 commission. But I specify my deal price and also what exchanges I go through (including Dark Pools). Some pools will pay for liquidity so if I add liquidity rather than buying at the ask / selling at the bid, then I will either get a rebate (discount) to make the trade. Sometimes free.

I can leave all types of orders types. I mostly use algos to manage my fills or I use limit orders inc stop limits, so I have masses of control over of my trades. From experience I never use a market order (FT basic service) as I am at the whim of a market making computer and have seen ridiculously bad fills.

$1 commission = 1 penny of stock price on exec for 100 shares, so it’s really noise. If $AMZN is trading at a $1 b/o spread ($3,488 - $3,489), then being able to execute at my price rather that the market maker’s offer adds up to a big difference and the $1 is lost. Thats what most users of free services don’t understand. They end up paying a lot more for their stocks than they should but they will never know. Even my old Barclays ISA I could request a MM quote and then decide whether to accept or not, as well as using limit orders and stop losses.

There is a IB monthly fee but it is waived once you pay a certain amount of commissions.

Options trades can get a lot more expensive. They start at a couple of dollars, but I’ve had to pay $100’s to close out positions - depending on size and order type. But the rewards are exponentially higher too so it’s worth it.


How are the options trades with IB?

I get options through Degiro, which is cheap and execution seems fine but liquidity is crap for the European ones (compared to those on US exchanges).

I can’t really answer that question as I only trade US options and have no experience in European equity options to compare for you. The liquidity is a market / exchange issue not an IB issue, so if someone is making a market in it somewhere I can trade it. For everything on FT there will be a liquid market, but not so much with small caps, penny stocks etc.

From my perspective the liquidity I can access in the US option market is excellent, but these are options so as deltas drop or for longer expiry dates the b/o spreads naturally widen out. Some will complain, but if you understand the gamma / theta profiles of these positions you understand why.

I can see good (relative term) liquidity in tens of strikes per expiry date (weekly) and see expiries out into 2021. I can ask for a lot more, but compared to other markets I can’t complain.

Is there a list somewhere of all the tickers available on Trading212?
I’ve been slowly taking money out of Freetrade and need somewhere to put it.

Probably worth asking that on the T212 community?

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It’s okay, someone DM’d me the info :upside_down_face:

Handy someone has that all ready to send over…


Yet more evidence the competition are getting desperate! Sign them up, then sink them with CFDs. FT are in another league and the competition knows it.


They don’t really push you to use CFDs. For those people that want to day trade and use CFDs they have a platform available. This subsidises their ISA and invest platform

I think it’s important to be balanced otherwise no one will ever get the truth. Users will look at their forums and see incorrect information about FT and vice versa here.

I’ve got accounts with both, and I’ve never felt pushed towards the CFD element, I just ignore it completely and use the invest account - they never mention CFD’s in the invest account at all.


The article in the Financial Times is very clear! Just part of it below. We all know that the competition wouldn’t survive without customer losses in the CFD business. FT have been very clear they want nothing to do with this part of the industry, whilst the competition will keep pushing it in ever more supple ways. The competition have pretty much had to copy Freetrade because of what Freetrade is offering, and they will keep doing so until FT can pass the critical mass, which will then see these ‘competitors’ for what they are, noise generating time wasters, with foundations built on CFD lies. The UK press is understanding this more and more and the articles that compare the industry put FT in the league of HL, AJ Bell etc, they don’t even mention the others!