With the current low interest rates, investing into stocks and ETFs becomes more and more popular, also among foreigners living in Germany. In the past it used to be rather tricky to get access to the stock market. Opening a broker account in Germany was complicated and fees were high. In the recent years this has changed dramatically. New players like Trade Republic have emerged, leading to lower fees and a more convenient trading experience.
In this article we are going to give you an overview of the best online brokers in Germany for trading stocks, ETFs and more. We will have a look at both new discount trading platforms and broker accounts of traditional banks. And you will learn more about the fee structure and the tradable assets (e.g. stocks, ETFs, options, etc.).
Trade Republic is the new kid on the block. With the launch of their trading app in May 2019, they revolutionized the broker market in Germany. It was for the first time that trading was possible conveniently from your mobile at low fees. Whereas traditional banks easily charge 10-20 EUR per trade, Trade Republic only charges 1 EUR. And that’s the only fee you’re paying! There are no account maintenance or deposit fees. With trade republic you can invest in more than 8,500 stocks and ETFs. Furthermore you can set up savings plans for 4,000 stocks and ETFs that are completely free of charge. Like this, you can easily put money aside and invest it into the stock market. Additionally you can also trade options and certificates (for the advanced traders amongst us 😎). The Trade Republic app is very intuitive and allows you to trade easily from your mobile phone. Another big advantage is the user interface that is available both in English and German. All in all definitely one of the best trading apps in Germany!
Trading app available in English & German Trade from your smartphone more than 8,500 stocks and ETFs Trading fee only 1 EUR per trade Free savings plans for more than 4,000 stocks and ETFs Long trading hours from 07:30 till 23:00h Open your account easily from your smartphone via VideoChat
In 2019 the German stock market portal wallstreet:online launched the trading platform Smartbroker. Similarly to Trade Republic, they also offer trading at very low fees. However their pricing structure is a bit more complex… You can trade all kinds of stocks, investment funds, ETFs options etc. starting at 0 EUR (if you use the gettex trading system). If you use other trading systems such as Lang & Schwarz or Xetra, the price can go up to 4 EUR per trade, which is still a very good price compared to traditional brokers. Smartbroker also offers almost 300 free ETF savings plans (no order fees). A minor drawback is the deposit fee of 0.5% that is charged if your cash holdings exceed 15% of your total account value. Furthermore trading is only possible through their website, as they do not have an app (yet). To wrap it up, Smartbroker is a great alternative as they offer a competitive pricing and a big selection of stocks and ETFs.
No limitation on tradable stocks and ETFs Trading fees starting at 0 EUR per trade Free savings plans for almost 300 ETFs Open your account easily from your smartphone via VideoChat Trading only via website (no app) Trading website is only available in German
Being on the German market since more than 20 years, ING is a well-established provider for broker accounts. The ING broker account is free of charge (i.e. no account maintenance fees) and the trading fees are with 4.90 EUR/trade + 0.25% of the order value comparably low. ING offers access to pretty much all kinds of tradable stocks, ETFs and so on. Fees for savings plans are starting at 1 EUR per transaction. Trading is possible both via their web platform as well as via the mobile app. ING is therefore one of the best traditional broker accounts as they offer a large amount of tradable stocks & ETFs at competitive prices.
No limitation on tradable stocks and ETFs Low trading fees (4.90 EUR/trade + 0.25%) No account maintenance fees Savings plans starting at 1 EUR Open your account easily from your smartphone via VideoChat Trading website and app only available in German
Like ING, comdirect is also a direct bank that is present on the German market since the 1990’s. With comdirect, which is a brand of Commerzbank, you can trade all kinds of stocks and ETFs via their website as well as via their app on your mobile phone. Trading fees start at 3.90 EUR per trade for the first 12 months (after that trading fees start at 9.90 EUR/trade). For the first three years you do not pay an account maintenance fee (after that 1.95 EUR/month). Savings plans on stocks, ETFs and certificates cost 0.25% of the order value. One of the major advantages of comdirect is the vast availabilty of all kinds of stocks, ETFs and certificates that can be traded via their intuitive mobile app.
No limitation on tradable stocks and ETFs Low trading fees for the first year (3.90 EUR/trade) Open your account easily from your smartphone via VideoChat Increase in fees after a certain time (e.g. account maintenance fee) Trading website and app only available in German
Opening a broker account in Germany is not difficult. But before signing up for a broker, make sure you know your priorities. Are you trading frequently and most of the time from your mobile? Then one of the above mentioned discount trading platforms is your choice as trading fees are low and you can conveniently trade from your mobile.
In contrast, are you trading not that often but with higher amounts? Then you should go for one of the traditional online brokers as they offer a large selection of tradable assets at reasonable trading fees.
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