Investment platforms enable traders to buy and sell a range of financial instruments – such as stocks, ETFs, forex, and cryptocurrencies.

This comparison guide ranks and reviews the 8 best investment platforms in the UK.

Within each review, we explore the respective investment platform in terms of supported markets, fees and commissions, account minimums, analysis tools, safety, and much more.

The Best UK Investment Platforms for Beginners 2024

The best investment platforms for 2024 are ranked in the list below:

  1. eToro – Overall Best Investment Platform in the UK With Copy Trading and Smart Portfolios
  2. XTB – Zero-Commission Trading Platform With Tight Spreads
  3. AvaTrade – Multiple Investment Suites to Choose From and 0% Commission Trading
  4. Pepperstone – Trade Assets Tax-Free via Spread Betting Markets
  5. IG – 13,000+Shares, ETFs, and Trusts via a Single Investment Platform
  6. Hargreaves Lansdown – Simple Investment Platform for Buying and Selling Shares
  7. AJ Bell – Make Investments Through a Tax-Efficient Account
  8. Free Trade – User-Friendly UK Investment App for Trading Shares

To compare investment platforms, such as those listed above – read on to find our comprehensive reviews.

81% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.

Best Investment Apps UK Reviewed & Compared

The investment platform comparison reviews that are to follow in the sections below cover everything a trader needs to make an informed decision. Read on to explore the best investment platforms in the UK for 2024.

1. eToro – Overall Best Investment Platform in the UK With Copy Trading and Smart Portfolios

etoro logoAfter reviewing a wide range of leading providers in this space, we found that eToro is the best trading platform in the UK to consider right now. eToro – which was founded in 2007, offers thousands of assets that can be traded from the comfort of your home. Starting with stocks, eToro supports more than 2,500 equities across over a dozen global exchanges.

Those looking to buy shares from the London Stock Exchange will be able to do so without paying any commission or stamp duty tax. The latter is waivered by eToro as an incentive to trade via its platform. Foreign-listed shares, such as those based in the US, Hong Kong, Germany, and France can also be traded at 0% commission.

eToro review

This enables UK-based investors to build a diversified portfolio of stocks from multiple markets in a cost-effective way. Not to mention that eToro supports fractional investments of just $10 or more, which is about £8 per trade. eToro also supports hundreds of commission-free ETFs, including those that track index funds like the FTSE 100 and Dow Jones.

Another way to diversify at eToro is by investing in cryptocurrency.

When choosing to buy cryptocurrency via eToro, the minimum investment is just $10 and the platform supports over 70 markets. This includes everything from Bitcoin and XRP to Litecoin and Dogecoin.

Did you know that eToro is also considered one of the best forex brokers in the UK? It supports dozens of currency pairs like EUR/USD and GBP/USD on a spread-only basis. This spread-only pricing structure is also offered on commodities and indices. eToro is one of the best investment platforms for beginners in the UK, considering its small account minimums and simple user interface.

eToro review

With that said, eToro also supports copy trading tools. This means that UK investors can allocate funds to an experienced trader that has a proven track record of making consistent gains. Any assets that the trader elects to invest in will be mirrored in the user’s eToro portfolio. It is also possible to invest in professionally managed portfolios, which are hand-picked by eToro.

These are called smart portfolios and there are dozens to choose from. Each of which will track a specific market from within the stock or crypto spaces. One such example is a smart portfolio that invests in a basket of renewable energy stocks. We like that eToro does not charge any management fees on either its smart portfolio or copy trading services.

When it comes to safety, eToro is authorized and regulated by the FCA, and covered by the FSCS. eToro is used by more than 30 million clients, which is testimony to its reputation as a credible and legitimate investment platform for UK traders. eToro accepts debit cards, bank transfers, and e-wallets for the purpose of making a deposit, and the minimum is just $10.

Check out our comprehensive eToro UK review here.

Number of Stocks 2,500+
Pricing System 0.5% deposit fee. $5 withdrawal fee. No stamp duty on UK shares
Fee to Buy Amazon Shares 0% commission
Min. Deposit $10
Trading Platforms Proprietary web trading platform and mobile app
Top Features Regulated by the FCA and covered by the FSCS, buy shares and ETFs at 0% commission, get started with just $10 (about £8), supports fractional shares, copy trading tools

Pros

  • Overall best stock investment platform in the UK
  • No commission is charged when buying and selling shares and ETFs
  • Make fractional investments of just $10
  • Covered by the FSCS and regulated by the FCA
  • Other popular markets include commodities, indices, and cryptocurrency
  • Invest passively via smart portfolios and copy trading

Cons

  • 0.5% conversion fee when depositing funds in GBP

81% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.

2. XTB – Zero-Commission Trading Platform With Tight Spreads      

XTB is a top-rated trading platform that supports nearly 2,000 tradable stocks, alongside a range of other asset classes. This is inclusive of forex, commodities, indices, and more. All of the assets supported by XTB are contracts-for-differences (CFDs). This enables UK residents to trade their preferred asset with leverage – in line with FCA limits.

For example, when trading currencies at XTB, positions can be entered with leverage of up to 30x. This means that for every £100 stakes, the trader can enter a position worth £3,000. Gold CFDs can be traded with leverage of 1:20 and stocks at up to 1:5. This will appeal to traders on a budget that wish to enter larger positions, but do consider the added risks.

XTB also enables traders to enter positions with either a buy or sell order. As such, traders can attempt to profit from both rising and falling prices. XTB offers a 0% commission pricing structure across all of its supported markets. There are no fees when funding an account with a debit card or bank transfer, which is also the case with withdrawals.

XTB review

Spreads are also tight at XTB, which is an indirect cost related to the bid/ask price of the respective market. Do note that when keeping a position open overnight, XTB will charge a financing fee. This is the case with all CFD brokers in the UK. XTB offers plenty of analysis tools via its native investment platform – xStation.

This will perhaps be of more interest to experienced traders, considering that xStation is jam-packed with technical indicators and charting tools. With that said, beginners are catered for too, as XTB offers a wealth of educational material on its website. XTB also offers one of the best investment apps for beginners.

The XTB app is available to download on both iOS and Android smartphones, as well as tablets. Complete newbies may wish to get started with the free XTB demo account, which mirrors live market conditions. Finally, XTB is authorized and regulated by the FCA. Therefore, just like eToro, this is a safe place to trade online.

Number of Stocks 1,850+
Pricing System No deposit fees when using a debit card. 2% deposit fee when using Skrill.
Fee to Trade Amazon Shares 0% commission
Min. Deposit No minimum
Trading Platforms Proprietary web trading platform and mobile app (xStation)
Top Features Trade CFDs with leverage, supports thousands of markets, one of the best investment apps in the UK, free demo account will appeal to newbies, high-level charting tools

Pros

  • Offers one of the best investment apps in the UK
  • Deposit funds with a debit card without paying any fees
  • Zero commission trading across all supported markets
  • FCA-regulated

Cons

  • Crypto assets not supported in the UK

81% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.

3. AvaTrade – Multiple Investment Suites to Choose From Plus 0% Commission Trading 

AvaTrade is a CFD trading platform that is regulated in no less than nine different regions. The platform requires a minimum first-time deposit of £100 and accounts rarely take more than two minutes to open. AvaTrade supports debit cards, which are processed instantly, in addition to conventional bank transfers.

Ever wondered what the best options trading platform in the UK is? At AvaTrade, traders have access to hundreds of stocks, ETFs, options, and indices, alongside commodities and currencies. All of the supported assets at AvaTrade can be short-sold and/or traded with leverage. Best of all, this investment platform supports trading on a 0% commission basis, which is the case across all supported markets.

AvaTrade review

AvaTrade offers its own advanced trading suite that can be accessed online or via an app for iOS and Android devices. With that said, AvaTrade also supports MT4 and DupliTrade. The latter enables investors in the UK to trade passively, by automatically copying a third-party strategy.

Number of Stocks 620+
Pricing System No deposit or withdrawal fees
Fee to Trade Amazon Shares 0% commission
Min. Deposit £100
Trading Platforms Proprietary web trading platform and mobile app, alongside MT4, and Duplitrade.
Top Features Heavily regulated, no commissions payable on any supporters markets, supports MT4 and DupliTrade

Pros

  • Regulated in nine different countries
  • Trade assets via the MT4 platform
  • No commissions are charged on any available markets

Cons

  • Only supports CFDs

76% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.

4. Pepperstone – Trade Assets Tax-Free via Spread Betting Markets

Pepperstone is an established trading platform that supports everything from stocks and forex to indices and commodities. This platform is ideal for trading in a tax-free way, as Pepperstone supports spread betting markets. The chosen spread betting instrument will track the respective market in real-time, so traders can speculate without owning the underlying asset.

Pepperstone review

Pepperstone also enables traders to spread bet with leverage of up to 1:30 on forex, and less on other asset classes. There are no trading commissions to pay at Pepperstone on the standard account, nor any minimum deposit requirements. Pepperstone supports various trading platforms including MT4 and cTrader.

Number of Stocks 1,200+markets in total, including UK and international stocks
Pricing System No deposit or withdrawal fees. Spread-only trading on all markets.
Fee to Trade Amazon Shares 0% commission
Min. Deposit No minimum
Trading Platforms No proprietary platform – but supports MT4, MT5, cTrader, and TradingView
Top Features To spread betting platform for tax-free trading, no minimum deposit on the standard account

Pros

  • More than 1,200 spread betting and CFD markets
  • Leverage on all supported assets

Cons

  • Does not offer real shares or ETFs
  • Only supports third-party trading platforms

78.8% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.

5. IG – 13,000+Shares, ETFs, and Trusts via a Single Investment Platform

IG is one of the best investment platforms in the UK for diversification. Crucially, the platform is home to over 13,000 shares, alongside ETFs, funds, investment trusts, and more. This not only includes the London Stock Exchange and AIM, but international markets.

Regarding the latter, IG offers access to the NYSE and NASDAQ at £10 per trade, irrespective of the amount being invested. If the investor places three or more trades in a month, IG scraps the commission on US-listed shares. UK-listed shares cost £8 per trade or £3 when the aforementioned monthly minimum is met.

IG review

IG does not support fractional shares like eToro, which will be a major drawback for investors on a budget. After all, investors will need to purchase full shares. Nonetheless, there is no minimum deposit when funding an IG account via a bank transfer. Debit card payments, on the other hand, require £250 or more.

Number of Stocks 13,000+
Pricing System £8 on UK shares, reduced to £3 when trading 3 or more times in a month.
Fee to Buy Amazon Shares £10, or £0 is trading 3 or more times in a month. Plus a 0.5% FX fee.
Min. Deposit No minimum on bank transfers. £250 when opting for a debit card.
Trading Platforms Proprietary web trading platform and mobile app, alongside MT4 and ProRealTime
Top Features Trusted brokerage that was established in 1974, user-friendly platform for buying and selling shares, huge selection of funds

Pros

  • Buy and sell more than 13,000 UK and international shares
  • Wide selection of investment funds – including trusts
  • No minimum deposit when opting for a bank transfer

Cons

  • Does not support fractional shares

6. Hargreaves Lansdown – Simple Investment Platform for Buying and Selling Shares

Complete beginners may consider Hargreaves Lansdown when researching the best investment platforms in the UK. Opening an account is a simple process and the minimum deposit is just £1. Furthermore, Hargreaves Lansdown offers a beginner-friendly interface, so even beginners are welcome.

Hargreaves Lansdown review

Hargreaves Lansdown supports the vast majority of shares listed on the London Stock Exchange and AIM. Investment fees are high at £11.95 per trade. Furthermore, just like IG, Hargreaves Lansdown does not support fractional shares. Hargreaves Lansdown also supports bonds, investment funds, trusts, ETFs, and more.

Number of Stocks Several thousand stocks from the UK and international markets
Pricing System £11.95 per trade. Reduced to £8.95 if trading more than nine times in a month. 0.45% annual fee on ISAs.
Fee to Buy Amazon Shares £11.95 commission plus 1% FX fee
Min. Deposit £1
Trading Platforms Proprietary web trading platform and mobile app
Top Features Huge selection of UK shares, supports UK-issued bonds, get started with just £1

Pros

  • One of the best UK investment platforms for accessing the AIM
  • Buy and sell corporate and government bonds (GBP-issued only)
  • Customer service via telephone

Cons

  • Very high investment fees
  • Additional charges when investing over the phone

7. AJ Bell – Make Investments Through a Tax-Efficient Account

The next option to consider on this list of the best investment platforms in the UK is AJ Bell. This platform is popular with investors who wish to buy shares through a tax-efficient account. This is because AJ Bell supports a range of ISAs, in addition to SIPPs. With that being said, fees at AJ Bell are high, especially when compared to platforms like eToro and XTB.

AJ Bell review

For example, it costs £9.95 to buy and sell shares online. The only way to reduce this to £4.95 is to place at least 10 trades in a month. Furthermore, when investing via an ISA, there is an annual fee of 0.25% We also found that AJ Bell charges a £1.50 fee when customers elect to reinvest their dividends.

Number of Stocks Most UK-listed shares plus access to 24 international markets
Pricing System £9.95 per trade, reduced to £4.95 when placing 10 or more trades in the previous month. £1.50 to reinvest dividends.
Fee to Buy Amazon Shares £9.95 commission plus 0.75% FX fee
Min. Deposit £1
Trading Platforms Proprietary web trading platform and mobile app
Top Features Popular investment platform for beginners, offers access to UK IPOs

Pros

  • Supports UK shares plus 24 global markets
  • Simple user interface will appeal to first-time investors

Cons

  • £9.95 fee to buy and sell shares
  • Fees to reinvest dividends
  • Does not offer leveraged markets

8. Free Trade – User-Friendly UK Investment App for Trading Shares

One of the best investment apps in the UK – Free Trade, is worth considering as a beginner. Free Trade’s app for iOS and Android has been designed with first-time investors in mind. Free Trade supports over 6,000 shares – not only from the UK, but across various US and European exchanges too.

Free Trade review

All shares supported by the Free Trade app can be traded on a commission-free basis. The basic account at Free Trade comes without any monthly fees. However, those wishing to invest through an ISA will be required to pay £4.99 per month. In addition to shares, Free Trade also supports ETFs, investment trusts, and even over-the-counter equities.

Number of Stocks 6,000+
Pricing System 0% commission on all supported shares. Basic account is free. ISAs require the standard account, which costs £4.99 per month.
Fee to Buy Amazon Shares 0% commission
Min. Deposit No minimum
Trading Platforms Proprietary investment app for iOS and Android
Top Features Supports more than 6,000 UK and global shares, beginner-friendly mobile app

Pros

  • Basic account is free
  • Buy and sell 6,000+shares at 0% commission

Cons

  • ISAs only available on the standard account at £4.99 per month
  • Too basic for experienced investors

How We Ranked the Top UK Investment Platforms

Choosing the best investment platform is no easy task. Investors will need to consider a wide range of factors, such as user-friendliness, commissions, and account minimums.

Here’s an overview of how we determined the 9 best investment platforms in the UK:

Range of Assets

The best investment platforms in the UK not only support domestic shares, but international markets too. eToro, for instance, allows clients to buy shares in the US, Germany, Hong Kong, France, Saudi Arabia, and many other global exchanges.

etoro stocks

Furthermore, eToro also supports commodities, indices, currencies, and cryptocurrencies.

Fees

We assessed each and every fee charged by an investment platform before compiling our review. Low-fee investment platforms like eToro and XTB offer 0% commission trading across stocks and ETFs.

eToro also waivers stamp duty tax when buying shares listed on the London Stock Exchange.

Tools & Analysis

The best investment platforms online host research and educational materials on their respective websites. This should include market insights, investment ideas, and charting tools for technical analysis.

Minimum Deposit

We always evaluate the minimum deposit requirement when reviewing investment platforms.

There is no deposit minimum at XTB, which will suit beginners. At eToro, the minimum first-time deposit for UK investors is $10 (about £8).

Mobile App

The best investment app in the UK is one which allows its users to trade around the clock from their mobile device. This is where eToro’s mobile trading app comes in.

Share investment apps enable users to buy and sell stocks via an iOS or Android smartphone. eToro offers one of the best UK investment apps for newbies, as the interface is user-friendly and free of unnecessary jargon.

etoro app

The eToro investment app supports full functionality, such as placing orders, depositing and withdrawing funds, and viewing the real-time value of the portfolio.

Demo Account

We also like investment platforms that offer a free demo account. This gives first-time investors the opportunity to test the platform out before investing in any real money.

Payment Methods

Most investment platforms in the UK accept debit card payments, as well as bank transfers. Paypal and other e-wallets are also an option with platforms like eToro.

Customer Service 

We also give priority to UK investment platforms that offer quality customer service. eToro, XTB, and many of the other online investment platforms discussed today offer live chat.

Hargreaves Lansdown and IG offer customer service over the telephone.

How to Get Started with a Regulated UK Investment Platform

Below, we offer a step-by-step tutorial on how to get started with the UK’s best investment platform – eToro.

Follow the steps below to begin investing in UK and international shares at 0% commission.

Step 1: Open an Account

Visit the eToro website and begin the account opening process. End-to-end, registration with eToro takes just five minutes.

Some of the information that eToro will collect includes the full name and address of the account holder, alongside an email and mobile number.

how to buy stocks on eToro

eToro will send a text message to the registered phone number, which contains a confirmation code. eToro will also ask for a copy of a passport or driver’s license. However, this can be uploaded at a later date – as long as the deposit is less than €2,000 (about £1,800).

Step 2: Deposit Funds  

To deposit funds, choose from the list of available payment methods. Most eToro clients deposit funds with a debit or credit card, but bank transfers and a selection of e-wallets are supported too.

The minimum first-time deposit is $10 (about £8).

Step 3: Search for Investment 

The easiest way to find an asset to invest in is to use the search box. For example, in the example image below, we are searching for ‘Apple’ shares.

Buy Apple shares on eToro

The other option is to click on the preferred asset class for inspiration on what to invest in. For example, by clicking on ‘Stocks’, this will reveal a range of filters, such as the exchange or industry.

Step 4: Confirm the Investment  

Once an investment market has been chosen, click on the ‘Trade’ button. This will populate an order box.

In the ‘Amount’ section, enter the total investment size. Stocks, ETFs, and crypto at eToro can be traded from just $10.

Buy Apple shares on eToro

To confirm the investment, simply click on the ‘Open Trade’ button.

81% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.

Conclusion

This comparison guide has reviewed the 9 best investment platforms in the UK for low fees, supported assets, account minimums, and more.

We ranked eToro as the overall best investment platform and app, not least because it offers 0% commission markets on stocks and ETFs, plus competitive fees on cryptocurrencies, forex, and commodities.

In most cases, it takes less than five minutes to open a verified eToro account and UK investors are required to meet a minimum first-time deposit of just $10 (about £8).

81% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider.

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