With the influx of new retail traders, the question of what is the best share trading platform Australia becomes increasingly important. Different investors want different things from their trading platform; from customizable charting capabilities to commission-free ETFs and stocks.
This review will look into not only the best share trading platforms Australia, but also how to choose which one is right for your specific trading needs and goals.
With so many options out there, choosing the best share trading platform Australia is easier said than done. Below is a refined list of the 10 best share trading platforms Australia:
eToro— Overall Best Share trading platform Australia
AvaTrade — CFD Broker With Great Research and Education
Plus500 — Best Broker for Low CFD fees
ANZ — Best One-Stop Shop for Investing Advice
Westpac — Best Selection of Australian Stocks
Eightcap — Best Platform for MT4 Users
Commsec — Best Platform for International Markets
Trading 212 — Commission-free ETFs and ISA
IG — Veteran Broker for US and Global Shares
Best Share Trading Platforms Australia Reviewed
Deciding on the best share trading platform in Australia can be challenging. Not only are there many options available, but there are many different aspects to what makes a trading platform great. Below is a review of the top 5 best share trading platforms Australia:
1. eToro — Overall Best Share trading platform Australia with 0% Commission & Social Trading
eToro is often considered to be the best overall trading platform in Australia due to its wide variety of innovative features, along with cheap pricing. First and foremost, it’s important to recognise eToro as one of the cheapest trading platforms out there with zero commission trading. The platform uses a variable spread, but this often works out to be a lot cheaper than the commission taken on competing platforms. As such, this copy trading app is one of the best stock trading apps in Australia.
With over 3,000 tradable assets, eToro has a wide range of markets that can be accessed, from global stocks to commodities and cryptocurrency. In fact, eToro has combined its commission-free best ETFs with crypto, generating a highly popular Bitcoin ETF for example. There are around 800 stocks that can currently be traded on eToro. Leverage can be applied to these stock positions, as well as going short. Features such as Stop Loss and Take Profit are very popular to help control risk and lock in profits whilst being away from the screen.
eToro, whilst being a fairly new company, has gained a lot of reputability in a short space of time. The platform is regulated by ASIC (Australia), FCA (UK) and CySec (Cyprus). The platform has a very easy-to-use user interface and is particularly usable through its mobile app, which seems to be where its focus is.
Finally, what separates eToro from other platforms is its innovative copy trading feature. eToro have realised that trading has become a social phenomenon, in which traders discuss portfolios and speculate on assets together in forums such as Reddit. eToro hasn’t only built in a Twitter-like feed feature, but they have also implemented the ability to follow and copy influential traders. So, users can seek out the most successful traders that use eToro and automatically copy their trades, making it a great choice for both beginners and intermediates.
68% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.
2. AvaTrade — CFD Broker With Great Research and Education
AvaTrade is a CFD broker founded in 2006 and is regulated by Central Bank of Ireland, Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), FSCA in South Africa, among others. This CFD broker has a lot to offer, but its limitations should be first recognised.
AvaTrade only offers CFD trading and not real stock trading. This means that its a platform to use if you’re looking for leveraged trading (in which you cannot change the default leverage of certain products, which is another limitation). However, its CFD fees are reasonable, even if its inactivity fees are high.
The positives of AvaTrade is that is has very good research capability and functionality. There are a powerful news feed/trading ideas part to the platform, along with being very intuitive and having fantastic interactive charting. Whilst there is no fundamental data on stocks, there is good technical analysis functionality. This further highlights that it’s a platform for day traders and not buy-and-hold investors.
There is a social trading aspect to AvaTrade, but it’s facilitated through third parties such as DupliTrade and ZuluTrade. Given that the minimum deposit is $2000 and $500 for each respectively, it’s clear that the feature isn’t as smooth as eToro’s just yet.
71% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.
4. Plus500 — Best Platform For Trading Analysis
Plus500 is an Israeli-founded CFD broker that, like AvaTrade, only offers CFDs. There are a decent amount of stock CFDs that can be traded at Plus500, but this is only for traders and not buy-and-hold investors. Furthermore, there are cryptocurrencies (14) and currency pairs (70) along with an average selection of ETF and commodity CFDs.
Plus500 has no commission on its CFD stock trading, but does have relatively high spreads. With an average selection of markets and average fee structure, you may be wondering how they have made the list. The reason is because of their fantastic accessibility and trading platform functionality. First and foremost, opening an account and customer service is second-to-none, being both cheap, fast, and responsive.
The trading platform is a joy to use, being very clean and well laid out, along with a strong mobile app. The two-step login makes it highly secure, and there are a lot of order types and search functionality. You can set up notifications and price alerts, access 9 charts on WebTrader, and view portfolio reports.
This makes Plus500 one of the best platforms for swing traders, or potentially, used purely as research in which the stock is purchased using another app. As long as you log into the platform regularly, you will not be charged an inactivity fee.
5. Trading212 — Best Platform for Low-Cost Passive Trading
Founded in 2004, Trading212 is a London-based trading company that is regulated by many bodies, such as the FCA, CySEC, and FSC. Trading212 facilitates both ETFs and real stock trading, with a fairly strong selection of markets and products (besides selling no cryptocurrency).
Trading212 allows users in the UK to make use of their tax-free ISA, though there’s no direct equivalent in Australia. But even putting the ISA to the side, Trading212 is a great choice for long-term ETF investing such as Vanguard funds. This is because users can access commission-free ETF investing, meaning that investing in Vanguard funds are cheaper than the Vanguard platform itself. Furthermore, ISAs can be set up on Trading 212, which fully replaces the need to use the Vanguard platform.
Trading212 has very good customer service, a highly functional and easy-to-use trading platform and mobile app, and helpful learning resources. However, the platform currently has a waiting list due to “unprecedented demand” for sign-ups. This also means it’s difficult to gauge the spreads in comparison to other platforms.
As for fees, Trading212 performs simultaneously strongly and poorly depending on how you use the platform. It’s commission-free and has no inactivity fee, but it also has fairly high overnight interest fees for CFDs that makes it considerably more expensive to hold a long CFD position than at eToro.
Here is a table outlining the 10 best share trading platforms in Australia.
Number of Stocks
Stocks or CFDs
Price for buying Amazon stock (1 unit)
Spread and overnight interest fees
Spread and overnight interest fees
19 international stock markets and over 2,000 ASX stocks
Commission and monthly fees
25 international markets (2,200 ASX stocks)
RAW account: Commission but no spreads. Standard account: Spreads but no commission.
25 international markets (2,000 ASX stocks)
N/A due to account waiting list
Commission and spreads
How to Choose the Best Share Trading Platform for You
When you compare share trading platforms, it’s important to break them down into smaller elements. Here are the different aspects of online share trading platforms to assess. If you’re wondering how to buy shares in Australia, you can read our comprehensive guide for everything you need to know.
Regulation is one of the most important aspects of choosing an online share trading platform. Regulation is something you won’t notice on the day-to-day use of a platform, but it could mean the difference of losing your entire investment portfolio in the event of the firm going bankrupt. Tier-1 regulators involve the FCA, ASICS, and CFPB. It’s important to avoid companies that are not fully regulated, or are only regulated by mediocre trading bodies.
Because many Australians trade US stocks, fees are important to share trading platforms in Australia. Fees can be the difference between a profitable trading strategy and an unprofitable one. Having a high spread can rule out the possibility of fast trading techniques, and a high commission can add up to a lot in annual fees. Commission-free trading is a recent trend, and whilst this is a good thing, it places more importance on estimating the platform’s spreads, which are a less obvious “fee”.
Furthermore, avoid setting up multiple trading accounts at platforms with high inactivity fees, and also avoid platforms that charge fees on withdraws.
Range of Stocks
The range of stocks that a platform may (or may not) be an important aspect to which platform you decide to use. It’s important on the one hand, because more stocks can mean more trading possibilities, which likely means more potential for trading profit. However, if there is a trading platform that is perfect for a trader but has fewer stocks available, it may not be an issue because the few stocks it has may be enough. Or, traders could simply use that platform for trading the stocks that it does have, and have an alternative account at a different platform for trades on stocks not offered by the first-choice platform.
Tools and resources are what helps traders make rational, educated decisions that are conducive to their strategy. Having more tools is always a good thing, but it’s important to decide which trading platform has the tools right for that trader in particular. For example, incredible charting customization and 100+ technical indicators are only useful for technical traders and do not help users looking to determine the intrinsic value of a stock.
The trading tools logic applies similarly to research resources, too. Having a news feed and trading ideas is always going to be useful, but make sure you check what research resources the platform has in the context of your strategy. For traders using fundamental analysis, this may mean looking for platforms that show the company’s financial statements, financial ratios, and so on.
The user experience of a platform is very important to a trader, but it’s something that’s hard to determine before trying it out for oneself. To help gauge the user experience prior to signing up, a user can either research reviews or use a demo account if one is available. This can help users get a feel and have a closer look at how intuitive the user interface feels – for example, how easy it is to search stocks and find functions.
Payment methods is another factor in deciding what the best trading platform is. For example, eToro has a variety of payment options, and even facilitates PayPal deposits, making it extremely fast and convenient for the users. This is much more preferable than setting up a bank contact, writing a reference with a long string of random characters, and manually sending money to verify a payment method.
Finally, customer service is something that traders do not need until they do – and when they do, the experience is extremely important. When having potentially thousands of Australian Dollars in your account, it’s important that you can contact the trading platform quickly, easily, and through a variety of methods (in case one fails or is too restrictive).
How to Get Started with the Best Share Trading Platform Australia
eToro has been picked as the best overall share trading platform Australia. For this reason, here is a step-by-step tutorial on how to get started with using eToro to trade stocks and shares in Australia.
Step 1: Open Account
Upon landing on the eToro website, press “Join Now” to sign up to the platform. As we can see below, eToro makes it incredibly easy to sign up, with the possibility of using Facebook and Google accounts to make the process faster.
Step 2: Verify and deposit funds into account
After signing up, the home page will look like this. This is where your news feed from the trader you follow will appear, and you can post your own thoughts on recent news or trading ideas too. At the top, there is a search bar in which you can search for stocks you want to invest in. As eToro is heavily regulated you’ll need to verify your account by uploading proof of ID and address.
Pressing the menu button in the top left will expand the menu window larger. From here, you can view your portfolio, watchlist, discover trading ideas, and access settings and deposit funds. You can deposit funds using a wide range of payment methods including e-wallets, bank transfers, and debit/credit cards. Furthermore, there are no deposit fees to worry about.
Step 4: Viewing a Stock
After searching for a stock using the top search bar and selecting one, you will be taken to its dedicated page. From here, you can view its feed, stats (such as P/E ratio, 1-year return), chart, and research. If you want to make a transaction, press the blue trade button in the top right.
Step 5: Buy Stocks
A window will pop up in which you can select where to buy or sell the stock. You can buy it at the current market price or set a rate. Below, you can select the amount you want to buy in dollars or the number of units you want to purchase. A Stop Loss, Take Profit, and leverage can be set under this. To execute the trade, press Set Order at the bottom.
We have picked eToro as the overall best online share trading platform Australia. The platform offers both CFDs and real stocks, no commission and low spreads, along with a very easy-to-use experience. This puts eToro in the mix with a handful of competitive firms, but when factoring in the social copy trading aspect of the company, it’s evident why eToro is experiencing vast numbers of signups over the past two years.
Furthermore, eToro has exceptional user functionality. Not only does the mobile application perform just as well as the web application, but both fundamental and technical analysis can be conducted; from being presented immediately with financial ratios to using Fibonacci retracements.
Overall, eToro covers all bases. There may be better options for highly advanced technical traders, but for most retail traders eToro performs well, making it the best Australian share trading platform.
eToro – Best Share Trading Platform Australia with 0% Commission
68% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.
Frequently Asked Questions on Share Trading Platforms
What is the best trading platform in Australia?
The best share trading platform Australia is eToro. The platform is well-rounded, with low fees and an accessible user interface. There are many competing platforms in Australia, but eToro has some of the lowest spreads available, as well as being highly regulated, having many markets available, and being exceptionally easy to set up an account with.
Which trading platform is best for beginners Australia?
eToro is considered to be the best share trading platform for beginners in Australia. Whilst eToro may not have some of the extremely sophisticated analysis functions of some specialist day trading platforms, it is perfectly usable for beginners. The social trading feature is what separates eToro from other platforms, where beginners can read the opinions of more experienced traders, view their portfolio, and even copy their trades.
Which is the cheapest broker in Australia?
The cheapest broker depends on the situation. eToro has zero commission, which not all platforms have, as well as low spreads. Avatrade is similarly priced, but eToro is considered to be the cheapest share trading platform with its low overnight interest fees and 0% commisssion