Interactive Brokers vs. Saxo

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    Trading has been around for centuries, but online brokers came along a few decades ago. Before then, people had to call their stockbrokers and trade on the available assets. End users did not have any real-time means of tracking the market but depended on the press and brokers for accurate information.

    Today, markets, trends, events, sentiments, analysis, and indicators are at our fingertips. Whether you employ a broker or make trades, real-time information is available. Fast forward to the era of smartphones, and you can monitor your open and closed positions anywhere.

    Online brokers give regular people and newbies a place to trade stocks, forex, ETFs, CFDs, and other financial instruments. They also support trading in cryptocurrencies, commodities, treasuries, and indices. There is no need for telephone calls, except if you need customer support for peculiar challenges.

    Reports show that the global online trading industry has a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.7%. You can use any of the following types of online brokers:

    • Those that offer trading services with tax, investment, and strategy advice
    • Those that provide trading services at a discount but lack any advice
    • Those that use algorithms with little to no human interference

    Overview of Saxo and Interactive Brokers

    FeaturesInteractive BrokersSaxo Bank
    💰 Account Minimum$0 for IBKR Lite accounts, $100 for IBKR Pro accounts$10,000 for Classic accounts, $200,000 for Platinum accounts, $1,000,000 for VIP accounts
    💸 Commission Fees$0 for US-listed stocks and ETFs on IBKR Lite accounts, tiered or fixed pricing for other instruments and regions on IBKR Pro accountsVariable pricing for stocks and ETFs depending on the region and account tier, spreads and commissions for other instruments
    💼 Investment OptionsStocks, Options, Futures, Forex, Bonds, Funds and moreStocks, ETFs, Forex, CFDs, Futures, Options, Bonds, Mutual Funds and more
    🤖 Robo-AdvisorYes (Interactive Advisors)No
    📊 Research and AnalysisMarket news, economic calendar, trading signals, sentiment analysis and moreMarket news, economic calendar, trading signals, sentiment analysis and more
    📱 Mobile AppYes, IBKR MobileYes, SaxoTraderGO
    🏦 Retirement AccountsYes, Traditional IRA, Roth IRA, SEP IRA and moreNo
    🎓 IRA AccountsYesNo
    📈 Trading PlatformClient Portal web platform and mobile app, Trader Workstation desktop platform and mobile app, IBKR APIsSaxoTraderGO web platform and mobile app, SaxoTraderPRO desktop platform
    📞 Customer Service24/5 phone and chat support24/5 phone and chat support
    📚 Educational ResourcesTraders’ Academy, webinars, podcasts, blog and moreSaxo Academy, webinars, podcasts, blog and more
    🌕 Fractional SharesYesNo
    🌱 Socially ResponsibleYes, Impact Dashboard and ESG ratingsYes, ESG ratings and sustainable investing portfolios
    🌎 International InvestingYes, over 135 markets across 33 countriesYes, over 40 exchanges across 25 markets
    💳 Cash ManagementYes, with IBKR Debit Mastercard and Bill PayNo
    🔍 Margin TradingYes, up to 1:50 leverage for US clients and up to 1:400 for other regionsYes, up to 1:30 leverage for retail clients and up to 1:100 for professional clients
    ⚙️ Options TradingYesYes
    ₿ Cryptocurrency TradingYes, through Paxos Trust CompanyNo
    🛡️ Account SecuritySSL encryption and segregated bank accounts. Member of SIPC, member of FINRA, member of various other regulatory bodies depending on the region.SSL encryption and segregated bank accounts. Licensed and regulated by various global leading regulators depending on the region. Member of the Guarantee Fund for Depositors and Investors which covers eligible clients up to EUR 100000 in case of insolvency.
    💹 LeverageUp to 1:50 for US clients and up to 1:400 for other regionsUp to 1:30 for retail clients and up to 1:100 for professional clients
    ⚖ RegulationRegulated by the SEC, FINRA, and CFTC in the US, the FCA in the UK, and other regulatory bodies worldwideLicensed and regulated by various global leading regulators depending on the region

    Interactive Brokers vs. Saxo

    Selecting the right online broker is a critical decision for individual investors looking to navigate the world of investment opportunities. In this comparison, they will examine two well-established online brokerage firms, Interactive Brokers and Saxo Bank. Both companies offer a wide range of investment products and services, but they also have notable differences in terms of fees, platform usability, research tools, and additional services. By comparing the pros and cons of each broker, they aim to provide a comprehensive analysis that will help investors make an informed decision based on their unique needs and preferences.

    Benefits and Drawbacks

    Interactive Brokers moves ahead with its advisory service in the US. However, Saxo is an equally competitive online broker. Their respective benefits and drawbacks are shown below.

    Saxo

    Saxo Bank is an online broker offering a range of investment products and services, including stocks, bonds, ETFs, and more. In this module, they will discuss the pros and cons of Saxo Bank for individual investors and compare them to Interactive Brokers, another well-established online brokerage firm.

    The Benefits and Drawbacks of Saxo

    Pros
    • Wide range of investment options
    • Competitive trading fees
    • User-friendly platform
    Cons
    • Higher account minimums
    • Limited research tools

    Saxo Bank provides a wide range of investment options, competitive trading fees, and a user-friendly platform. Interactive Brokers specializes in low account minimums and comprehensive research tools. When deciding between the two brokers, individual investors should consider their specific needs and preferences to make the best choice.


    Interactive Brokers

    Interactive Brokers is a well-known online broker providing a range of investment products and services, including stocks, options, futures, and more. In this module, they will explore the pros and cons of Interactive Brokers for individual investors looking to open an account and compare them with Saxo Bank, another popular online broker.

    The Benefits and Drawbacks of Interactive Brokers

    Pros
    • Low trading fees
    • Comprehensive investment products
    • Powerful trading platform
    Cons
    • Complex platform
    • High account minimums

    Interactive Brokers customers generally value low trading fees, comprehensive investment products, and a interactive’s powerful trading platform.


    Service, Fees, and Customer Support

    Saxo

    Service

    Saxo offers trading services in two tiers, which are as follows:

    • Investment products like stocks, ETFs, bonds, mutual funds, crypto ETPs, etc.
    • Leveraged products, including options, futures, forex, crypto FX, CFDs, and commodities.

    With commodities, you can trade spot metals, CFDs, futures, options, and ETCs. However, the pricing has three tiers: classic, platinum, and VIP. The VIP level supports trades with lower amounts.

    It will cost you more to attain the VIP level, but it has benefits. The broker will give you access to cryptocurrencies without needing an exchange or wallet. That means you cannot trade physical cryptocurrencies but can still trade their price movements.

    Saxo offers three platforms to support online trading, and they are as follows:

    • SaxoTraderGo
    • SaxoTraderPro
    • Connectivity and APIs
    • Third-party tools

    SaxoTraderGo is the primary trading platform, but it is packed with all the tools to execute online trades. You can view the portfolio summary, perform performance analysis, and examine returns. The software also has an in-depth research tool that uses SaxoStrats analysis and price data.

    You can download SaxoTraderGo on your Android or iOS device from the App Store or Google Play. That allows you to trade on the go and manage your trades wherever you are.

    Advanced traders will likely use SaxoTraderPro because of the enhanced functions. It suits people who engage in high-volume trading and require more flexibility and customization. Moreover, it is only available for PCs, requiring 650 MB of disk space.

    While downloading and using SaxoTraderPro is free, some functions may require monthly subscriptions. A Saxo account allows you to trade over 65,000 instruments and has three tiers.

    Fees

    Let’s begin the fee structure with the accounts before they move to the trades. The Saxo account has three tiers. Their charges are as follows:

    Fees
    ClassicRequires initial funding of $2,000
    PlatinumRequires initial funding of $200,000
    VIPRequires initial funding of $1,000,000

    Opening a joint account will cost less than $50,000 on the first deposit. You can also step it up to the VIP level and pay $1,000,000. This level brings the most competitive prices, a personal manager, exclusive event invitations, etc.

    The commissions from trading are as follows:

    • $1 for stocks and ETFs
    • $1.25 on listed options and futures
    • 0.05% on government bonds
    • $0 on mutual funds

    Other charges come with specific features. For example, Level 2 Market Data on SaxoTraderPro requires a subscription.

    Customer Support

    You will get top-notch customer support when you trade with Saxo. Given its robust coverage worldwide, they did not expect anything less. The physical offices are well distributed across regions to provide hands-on support to clients.

    Saxo has offices in Europe, Asia/Pacific, and the Middle East. The countries include Belgium, Denmark, France, Italy, Netherlands, Switzerland, Australia, Shangai, Singapore, etc.

    If you want to avoid going to the physical offices, contact the support team through the email address or telephone number provided. Just pick the office in or close to your city and extract its email or contact information.

    Saxo does not have live chat support in its software. You can only reach them via email or phone call. Nevertheless, the help center can help with your challenges.  

    Interactive Brokers

    Service

    Interactive Brokers is a full-service online broker with more than a trading platform. The extra services will come in handy if you need more than commodities, stocks, ETFs, etc. However, you must know the platforms before learning how to get each service.

    The broker offers the following trading platforms:

    • IBKR Global Trader
    • Client Portal
    • IBKR Mobile
    • Trader Workstation
    • IBKR APIs
    • IBKR EventTrader
    • Impact

    GlobalTrader features stocks, cryptos, ETFs, mutual funds, and options. You can also use your mobile device to get to the platform, place orders, and make trades.

    The client portal is more of a way to keep track of quotes, balances, and reports. It is available on the web and has no downloadable or installation file.

    Trader Workstation suits clients that trade actively and have large volume orders. It only works on desktops but has everything you need for advanced features. Even Interactive Brokers does not recommend it for beginners.

    Interactive Brokers offers the following services:

    • PortfolioAnalyst
    • Mutual funds marketplace
    • Bonds marketplace
    • Cash management
    • Third-party integration
    • Interactive advisors

    Interactive Advisors is available for as little as $100. You can use its advice on top-performing portfolios and other themes to shape your trading strategy. However, it is not licensed to provide advisory services in the UK.

    Fees

    You don’t need any money to open an account with Interactive Brokers. Its IBKR Pro and IBKR Lite accounts cost $0. Nevertheless, trading is only available if you deposit money with the online broker.

    Broker accounts require an initial payment of $10,000. The platform will use the deposit as its commission for the first eight months. Then, beginning with the ninth month, you will pay $2,000 per month.

    Enhanced Network Connections are not without cost, with FIX CTCI costing $1,500 per month in first-session commissions. Subsequently, you will pay $1,000.

    Hooking up to the Trader Workstation and TWS API costs $500, while the REST API costs $500 in commission. Apart from these, you will pay commissions and margins on trades. You can expect competitive rates for these services.

    Customer Support

    Interactive Brokers has a comprehensive support center that contains answers to common queries. You can use the search bar to narrow the results or browse the entire FAQ library. Everything, from trading to funding and management, is available.

    There is a live chat room where you can interact with a representative in real-time. If you need something more direct, you can use the telephone service. Otherwise, sending an email should take care of your challenges.

    Use the “Send Documents” function if you have any files you would like to share with the broker. You can also send them via email.

    Conclusion

    Saxo is an internationally recognized online broker under Saxo Bank A/S. It has physical offices in several countries, but you can contact customer service via email or telephone. On the other hand, Interactive Brokers brings an advisory role to its online trading.

    You can trade with its recommendations for as little as $100. With Saxo, you must analyze the markets yourself. That does not prevent you from analyzing with Interactive Brokers.

    Recommendations to Get the Right Broker

    If you want a more affordable online broker with advisory services in the US, you can go with Interactive Brokers. Saxo is more expensive, with a $2,000 minimum deposit. Also, you need to pay more to get competitive rates with Saxo.

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