Webull Review 2021: Pros, Cons and How It Compares

Webull has some of the lowest fees among brokerages, without skimping on advanced trading tools. Despite the low costs, it may not be the best brokerage for beginners.

Chris DavisApril 13, 2021
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Our Take

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

The bottom line: Webull will appeal to the mobile-first generation of casual investors with its slick interface for desktop and mobile apps, but the brokerage also delivers an impressive array of tools for active traders. However, its relatively weak educational content may leave true beginners in the lurch, and it lacks access to a few common asset classes.

Webull

on Webull's website

on Webull's website

Fees

$0

Account Minimum

$0

Promotion

2 Free Stocks

after opening and funding an account.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Low costs.

  • Easy-to-use platform.

  • Advanced tools.

  • Access to cryptocurrency.

Cons

  • No mutual funds.

  • Thin educational support.

Compare to Similar Brokers

Webull
TD Ameritrade
Interactive Brokers IBKR Lite
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
Fees

$0

Fees

$0

per trade

Fees

$0

per trade

Account Minimum

$0

Account Minimum

$0

Account Minimum

$0

Promotion

2 Free Stocks

after opening and funding an account.

Promotion

None

no promotion available at this time

Promotion

None

no promotion available at this time

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Full Review

Founded in 2017, Webull is a relative newcomer to the brokerage world, but it appears to have used that late entry to its advantage. In some ways, the company seems to have taken cues from modern forerunners like Robinhood, which appeal to new and casual investors who expect a great mobile experience and a clean, simplified desktop interface.

But Webull is also a strong choice for more advanced active traders, offering in-depth charting, dozens of technical indicators, advanced orders, Level II market data from Nasdaq, customization and more. All of this is packaged up in an approachable, sleek platform. Moreover, the company has made rapid progress building out its offerings: In late 2019, it introduced an individual retirement account, and just this year, it rolled out cryptocurrency and options trading. And while Webull doesn’t yet offer fractional shares, there’s talk of this feature coming in the near future.

Webull is best for:

  • Intermediate investors.

  • Active traders.

  • Options traders.

  • Cryptocurrency traders.

Webull at a glance

Account minimum

$0

Stock trading costs

$0

Options trades

$0

Account fees (annual, transfer, closing, inactivity)

No annual or inactivity fees; $75 full/partial transfer fee.

Tradable securities

  • Stocks.

  • ETFs.

  • Options.

  • Cryptocurrency.

  • ADRs.

Number of commission-free ETFs

Hundreds of ETFs trade commission-free

Number of no-transaction-fee mutual funds

None

Trading platform

Browser-based and downloadable desktop platforms available with advanced charts, indicators, screeners and customization.

Mobile app

Mobile app offers advanced features including charts and indicators, paper trading, price alerts and voice command.

Research and data

News, research and analysis available from Nasdaq Totalview, Thomson Reuters, Refinitiv, Lipper, OPRA (real-time quotes available free with one or more options trades per month), OTC Bulletin Board

Customer support options (includes website transparency)

24/7 phone and email, chat available in mobile app.

Where Webull shines

Cost: Webull ranks high in terms of cost, with no account minimum and free trades on stocks, exchange-traded funds and American depository receipts. Even options trades are free, with neither a charge per trade nor per contract.

Platform: New investors might be overwhelmed by the number of charts, graphs, indicators and screens at their disposal, but thanks to the clear interface, someone with even a little bit of experience can quickly start to figure it out.

And this really is where Webull excels: marrying the minimalist look and feel the mobile-first generation is accustomed to with the capabilities of a more advanced product. This also helps Webull achieve the somewhat unique feat of creating a platform that bridges intermediate level trading and advanced trading, ushering users along their investment journey as they gain more experience.

Margin trading: Webull’s margin rate tiers are slightly lower than many of its competitors, and on top of that, margin accounts are available at no extra cost to Webull users with a balance of at least $2,000. Robinhood, the most comparable product to Webull, requires an additional monthly subscription to gain access to a margin account. However, this access brings up a point worth mentioning: Trading on margin comes with significant risk. Investors should fully understand those risks before they engage in margin trading.

Where Webull falls short

Tradable securities: Despite a robust offering for active traders, Webull lacks access to some common securities, such as mutual funds and bonds. For investors interested in saving for retirement in an IRA, this could make it harder to truly diversify across assets traditionally found in a retirement portfolio.

Cash management: Webull offers no interest on uninvested cash, has no default fund for uninvested cash, nor any ancillary banking or cash management product to make up for this, as some brokers do (such as Ally Invest and Robinhood). In other words, any uninvested cash will sit idle with no chance to grow. That said, many default sweep interest rates this year are a paltry 0.01%, so in today’s climate, the line between offering interest on uninvested cash and not doing so is pretty thin.

Educational support: For as clean as the product is and as much focus as the company puts on technology and innovation, its educational content is underwhelming. It can be hard to navigate and doesn’t go into great detail on complex topics like margin and options trading, topics that certainly deserve clear and thorough explanations. This is another reason why Webull may not be the best choice for beginners.

Is Webull right for you?

If you’re a true beginner, or if you’ve yet to build a well-diversified, long-term portfolio, there may be other brokers better suited for you. However, if you’ve got an intermediate level of experience, are interested in active trading or are hoping to improve your trading skills through advanced orders and technical analysis, Webull could be a good fit — especially considering its low price point compared with brokers with similar offerings.

on Webull's website