Tastytrade, 2019 Review

Tastytrade is yet another online stock trading platform. A privately-owned company founded by the same individuals who started Thinkorswim, Tasty Trades got its start in 2017 and is headquartered in Chicago. US FINRA regulated the company and considers the platform safe.

Options Action

Tastytrade uniqueness is that it is primarily focused on trading options. While trading stocks are possible, it can be complicated since the platform is not geared for that.

The fee structure is also unique because there are no closing fees for most securities. At $1 to open an option contract on a stock and $0 to close it, the fees are some of the lowest in the industry. It is $5 to open a stock position and $0 to close. Options on futures are $2.50 to open and $0 to close. Finally, futures contracts are $1.25 to open and $1.25 to close. These low fees can be attractive to traders who buy and sell on a higher frequency basis.

Fees of the Platform

In addition to the basic trading fees listed above, there are a few other fees to consider.

Inactivity fee = none

Financing fee for holding a leveraged position more than one day = 8 percent

Account, setup, custodial fees = none

Withdraw fee = $25 U.S. Citizen. $45 non-U.S. Citizen

Opening an Account

Opening an account is fully digital and requires no minimum balance. However, if you wish to trade on margin you must maintain a minimum of $2,000 balance. Accounts can be opened in about 15 minutes after entering some basic personal information; however, it can take up to 3 days for your account to be approved. Accounts are available to non-U.S. citizens from multiple countries, but accounts are U.S. Dollar based only, and non-citizens can only use the bank transfer option and are subject to high withdraw fees. U.S. Citizens can take advantage of the ACH and check options.

Account Types

Tastytrade offers a few different types of accounts. A cash account is one where the user must cover all the trades in full with the money in the account. This account does not have margin trading benefits. A margin account will give the user full access to all the tools on the site and allow for margin trading. There is also a retirement account available in the form of either a traditional or ROTH IRA. This account type is available to U.S. citizens only.

The Platform

Tastytrade platform can look intimidating, as it is designed with options trading in mind. It is also in U.S. Dollars only and only available in English. The platform is non-customizable, so you must use the default settings. The interface itself is on the complex side – making this platform more for the experienced trader. Options trading and various terminologies and strategies are complex. Naturally, the interface to support it is going to look complicated at first glance. If you are seasoned at trading options, then you will find all the strategies available with ease. Placing an order takes only a few clicks once you understand how to navigate the page.

The platform is available on the web and as a mobile option. Both versions are basically the same. The mobile version has no price alerts, and the trading tables are organized a bit differently from the web version.

A watchlist, called the Grid, is available and contains detailed info on your selected securities. You can also set up a price watch lists and email notifications on your securities.

Research tools on the site are limited, as most data is focused on options trading. You do have the choice of following the actions of the Tastytrade team members. It is an active community, so there are plenty of opportunities to mirror their trades.

One nice feature of the site is the live video stream and video archives. Tastytrade runs a live video feed -during trading hours- that you can watch once you are signed up on the platform. Most of the content in both live and archived is options based.

Customer service is readily available via phone, email, and live chat. It is currently available in English only and not available on weekends.

Conclusion

Tastytrade is an excellent trading platform if you are an options trader. The low fee structure is perfect for traders who trade on higher frequencies. Signing up is easy and requires no minimum balance for a basic cash account. Customer service is readily available during weekdays, and the video live stream and archived videos on trading and options strategies are an excellent resource.

The site can be, however, complicated if you are not seasoned at trading options, and it is not ideal if you are interested in trading stocks or have a buy and hold strategy. Tastytrade only deals in U.S. securities and in U.S. Dollars. Customer support and the site is also only available in English. This can be a deterrent to traders outside the United States.

If you are interested in a platform that will allow you to quickly and easily execute options trades at low cost, then Tastytrade is worth looking into. If you are trading stocks or buying and holding, then it is best to look elsewhere.

Readers see Also:

Choosing The Right Kind Of Broker

YieldStreet – A 2019 Review

Understanding Options (part 1) – Options Are Complicated For A Reason

Money Management Tips for Better Trading

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