Are you an active, self-directed trader searching for a customizable, data-driven investment platform?
Want to experience high-quality trading tools at a lower-than-average rate?
Well, I’ve got two words for you: Zacks Trade
From affordable trading fees and feature-rich workstations to international exchange opportunities and mobile-friendly capabilities, this resource could easily be dubbed the advanced trader’s ideal interface.
What is Zacks Trade?
Zacks Trade, a comprehensive online brokerage firm, boasts a robust, state-of-the-art interface that’s given top online trading competitors a run for their money.
The forward-thinking platform is a globetrotter in every sense of the word, not only enabling trading in over 200 countries (excluding Canada and Japan), but also permitting trading on more than 91 international exchanges.
Len Zacks, the founder of Zacks Trade, published his pioneering work on innovative investment strategies in 1978.
Shortly after, Zack’s Investment Research (ZIR) was born, recognized today as North America’s second largest independent equity research firm.
With decades of overwhelming success under its belt, ZIR launched Zacks Trade to supply active, independent traders with the cutting-edge tools and sophisticated research needed to “hit the jackpot,” if you will.
Here’s all you need to know about Zacks Trade – and then some.
Registration Requirements: Approval is based on one’s Individual Annual Net Income and Liquid Net Worth. There’s a minimum of 100 live trades, but a simulated trading account may be used to substitute this requirement.
Account Types: There are two main account types – Cash and Margin. With a Cash account, only deposited account funds can be traded. A Margin account gives you the flexibility to borrow funds exceeding an account balance for investment purposes.
Minimum Initial Investment: A $2,500 minimum account balance is required for all users, no matter which interface you prefer.
Account-Based Fees: No account, maintenance, order cancellation, account inactivity, or IRA custodial fees. Service offerings are also offered a la carte style at a monthly rate.
U.S. Commission Fees: The more you trade, the more you save. For more details on U.S. trading fees or to view international trading fees, visit Zacks Trade’s pricing guide online.
- Stocks & ETFs: $0.01 per share ($3 minimum); 1% of trade value ($3 minimum)
- Mutual funds: $27.50
- Options: $3 for 1st contract + $0.75 per additional contract
- Broker-assisted trades: $0
Customer Support: Live, online access to a licensed broker is available during normal business hours (M-F, 9 am. – 6 pm, EST).
Account Protection: SIPC provides a maximum coverage of $500,000 with a $250,000 cash sublimit for all accounts.
From advanced trading connections to simply wanting to manage trades online, Zacks Trade has the right platform for you.
- ZacksTradePro: Recognized as their flagship interface, download-based ZacksTradePro is geared toward experienced traders looking for robust analytical tools and market data.
- ZacksTrader: For beginners wanting more of a scaled-down trading experience, browser-oriented ZacksTrader is fundamental in nature while still providing high-end customization options and tools.
- Client Portal: All users have access to Client Portal, the one stop shop for all things account-based. Here clients can easily adjust account settings, review trades, and even manage important documents, among other things.
How Zacks Trade Stacks Up
Before deciding to invest time, money, and effort into Zacks Trade, let’s examine the pros and cons of this online-based resource. An informed decision is always the best decision.
Taking a quick glance, it’s evident Zacks Trade authorizes one-of-a-kind trading fees, global market data streaming, and a la carte service offerings, among other features that may attract the more seasoned trader.
Since the interface is not quite as user-friendly compared to similar investing platforms, and a $2,500 minimum balance is required for all users, a steep learning curve (and dint in one’s bank account) may be on the horizon for interested novice traders.
Let’s now walk through the main pros and cons of Zacks Trade’s signature offerings.
- Competitive Trading Fees: Among the lowest rates available, U.S. stock + option trades start at $3.00 ($0.01 per share), margin rates stand at 5.9% or lower (depending on balance), and broker-assisted trades are free.
- International Clients: Located in over 200 countries and capable of trading on more than 91 international exchanges, users can participate in profitable trading ventures around the globe.
- Customizable Workstations: Feature-rich, intuitive workstations are customized to a specific user’s experience level and trading priorities.
- Award-Winning, Mobile-Friendly Application: Users can receive notifications on account activity and even orders using Handy Trader. Compatible with iOS, Blackberry, or Android, the app is available via the Apple or Google Play Store.
- Global Market Data: Available 24 hours a day, exclusive global market data is available to users (15-minute stream delay must be taken into account).
- Research Tools: In partnership with Zack’s Investment Research, users can access free research subscriptions and premium trials to boost their investing potential.
- A la Carte Service Offerings: Service offerings are offered a la carte, so users only pay for what they really need at a monthly rate.
- No Unwanted, Account-Based Fees: Say goodbye to account, maintenance, order cancellation, account inactivity, or IRA custodial fees.
- Account Transfer Assistance: If you feel inclined to switch over to Zacks Trade, you’ll be provided with up to $150 on full account transfers of at least $5,000 – no questions asked.
- Live, Licensed Broker Support: Zacks Trade values the importance of building client relationships and product loyalty. Live, online access to a licensed broker invites a more “intimate” investing experience.
- Paper Trading for Beginners: Users can sign-up for a demo-account preloaded with $1 million in “virtual” funds for 90 days. Paper trading allows beginners to get their feet wet before diving in head first.
- Not “Beginner-Friendly:” Zacks Trade’s complex workstation interface could seem quite intimidating for newbies. The ZacksTrader interface is available for novices wanting a clean, simple workstation without all the bells and whistles.
- Required Minimum Balance: Although Zacks Trade doesn’t require users to pay any unwanted account-based fees, users must initiate an account with at least a $2,500 available account balance.
- Live Chat Limits: Live chat is only available during their regular business hours (M-F, 9 am. – 6 pm, EST). Having a little extra help now and again is nice, though.
- Withdrawal Fees: One withdrawal is permitted from a specific account monthly. A subsequent withdrawal in the same month costs $1.00, $4.00 for a check payment, and $10.00 for a wire transfer.
- SIPC Insurance Protection Restrictions: Although you’re pretty much taken care of with a maximum coverage of $500,000 ($250,000 cash sublimit), SIPC cannot protect compromised accounts or guard against fraudulent account activity.
How Secure is Zacks Trade?
By all means, Zacks Trade is a secure, reliable interface that takes the protection of client information seriously.
Along with standard encryption technology – 128-bit SSL encryption, to be exact – users can breathe a sigh of relief with maximum insurance protection coverage of $500,000 (cash sublimit set at $250,000) against broker failure.
A secure login system is required for all users, no matter which workstation interface utilized.
Multiple security devices aren’t required, since a single device is shareable among more than one account per user. There is no minimum asset limit, so user accounts are fully protected regardless of capacity.
For those wanting to go the extra mile in account protection, account access can be securely restricted to pre-determined IP addresses.
The intuitive software automatically restricts account access after a set number of failed login attempts, and automatic log-off initiates if a certain period of account inactivity is detected.
Final Take on Zacks Trade
For active, experienced investors wanting to tackle online trading, but still prefer the flexibility of live customer support, Zacks Trade may be your perfect match.
In reality, though, the software caters to experienced traders interested in maximizing their trading potential with analytical tools and metrics.
With low trading fees, outstanding research tools, state-of-the-art encryption, and workstation customization, Zacks Trade is still certainly worth looking into.
According to ZacksTrade’s website, however, there are important risks all traders, no matter how seasoned, must consider when participating in online trading ventures:
“Online Trading has inherent risks due to system response times and access times that may vary due to market conditions, system performance, and other factors. An investor should understand these and additional risks before trading.”
The bottom line is this: no matter what trading firm you’re considering, remember to holistically research its offerings from all angles before investing any valuable time (and money, of course).