Compare WeBull versus Interactive Brokers: IRA, commissions, investing fees, trading tools, account differences, pros and cons. Which online broker is better in 2023?

Overview of Interactive Brokers and WeBull

Advanced traders will find much to like about Webull and Interactive Brokers. But which one is the better of the two? That’s what this analysis is going to find out.

Comparison Table

Interactive Brokers Review
Rating Interactive Brokers rating Webull Rating
Stocks $0 $0
Options (per contract) $0.70 $0
Mutual Funds $14.95 na
Initial Funding Requirement $0 $0
Inactivity Fee $0 $0
IRA Annual Fee $30 $0
Full Account Transfer $0 $75
Partial Account Transfer $0 $75
Account Closing Fee $0 $0
Trading Experience & Technology brokerage ratings brokerage ratings
Mobile brokerage ratings brokerage ratings
Research Amenities brokerage ratings brokerage ratings
Portfolio & Analysis Reports brokerage ratings brokerage ratings
Customer Service and Education brokerage ratings brokerage ratings
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Category One: Tradable Assets

Webull clients can buy and sell the following investment vehicles:

- Stocks
- ETFs
- Closed-end funds
- Options
- Cryptocurrencies

Interactive Brokers still does not offer any cryptocurrency trading, although it has publicly announced plans for it in the future. The lack of any crypto trading right now puts IB behind Webull and many others in the industry.

But IB does have a long list of other tradable assets. These include every product on Webull’s list (except cryptos of course) plus the following:

- Precious metals
- Warrants
- Mutual funds
- Bonds and other fixed-income securities
- OTC and foreign assets
- Futures contracts
- Cryptocurrencies
- Forex

Winner: Interactive Brokers overall

Category Two: Websites

Trading any of the assets on either broker’s list is fairly straightforward thanks to user-friendly web-based tools.

Webull vs IB

At Webull, this is in the form of a browser platform that launches from inside its website. The program has some intuitive yet powerful widgets that will please even the most demanding traders. During our probing, we found the following features to be of great value:

- Ability to create multiple watchlists with data that updates in real time
- Hot keys that can be modified
- A high degree of customization
- Simulated trading mode
- Market and asset news (foreign and domestic)
- National Best Bid and Offer data
- Price Ladder
- Multi-chart display

Charting on Webull’s platform is very advanced. A single graph can be displayed the full width of the monitor and there are about 50 technical studies.

The primary downside of Webull’s browser platform is the stock screener. It can only search by a few criteria.

Moving on to Interactive Brokers, we get another great browser-based trading experience. IB calls its platform the client portal. It has many useful trading tools, including the following:

- Advanced order ticket with algo trading option and foreign stock compatibility
- Full-screen charts with many tools
- Lots of research tools on stocks
- Dashboard with info on positions, market news, and more
- iBot, an artificial intelligence

IB vs Webull

The major advantage of IB’s client portal compared to Webull’s browser platform is a more thorough stock screener with more foreign markets and many more search variables.

Winner: Pretty even overall

Category Three: Desktop Programs

Neither broker-dealer has stopped at website trading. Each has a powerful desktop program that should not be overlooked.

Webull or IB

Webull’s desktop software is largely based on its web-based cousin. The default layout is the same, which creates an identical look and feel. Most of the tools found on the browser system will also be found on the desktop program. The best order tickets are on the desktop system. They include:

- The regular ticket with 5 order types (same as the browser system)
- Active Trade ticket with customizable trade buttons
- Options trade ticket with multiple legs (one can be for the underlying stock)

IB’s desktop program has two order tickets, one for options and one for everything else; and when we say everything else, we really do mean everything else. This second ticket can place trades for all sorts of assets, like warrants, bonds, and futures. Plus, it can trade foreign assets on foreign exchanges. Forex trades are done through dealing boxes.

Charting is on a very advanced level on IB’s desktop software with over 100 technical indicators. Other great features include right-click trading, multiple drawing tools, and a high degree of customization.

IBKR or Webull

Winner: Another tie

Category Four: Mobile Apps

Webull has a mobile app with many impressive features, among them are:

- A community forum where traders can network on trading topics
- Demo mode
- Trading competitions (in demo mode)
- Multi-chart graphing mode
- Bonuses for opening accounts and referring friends
- Advanced trading ticket with bracket orders

WeBull vs Interactive Brokers

But Interactive Brokers doesn’t want to be outdone. It delivers:

- An artificial intelligence (the same one mentioned above)
- Multiple order tickets, including a wheel entry system
- Swipeable charts on one order ticket
- Option spread template
- Horizontal charting with lots of technical studies

Interactive Brokers Mobile App

Neither app offers streaming investment news or mobile check deposit, two features badly needed in today’s world.

Winner: Pretty close

Category Five: Day Trading

Shorting. Both firms in this survey permit the shorting of assets. Interactive Brokers’ desktop platform displays if an asset is shortable, while Webull’s software displays more information, such as shorting leverage on a particular instrument.

Level II quotes. Both firms charge for them. Webull consistently has the lower price.

Direct-access routing. Interactive Brokers customers, but not Webull clients, can route orders to specific market makers.

Routing fees and rebates. Maker-taker fees are available at Interactive Brokers.

Winner: Tie

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Category Six: Margin Borrowing

Trading with borrowed money is a simple process with either brokerage firm. Of course, both firms charge for this service.

Currently, Webull clients pay anywhere from 6.49% to 9.49%; the more you borrow, the higher the rate. At Interactive Brokers, Lite customers pay a flat 6.33%, while Pro clients pay between 4.48% and 5.33%, a fantastic bargain.

Both desktop platforms show margin details, a useful service if you plan on trading with borrowed money.

Winner: Interactive Brokers

Category Seven: Miscellaneous Services

IPO availability: Webull has user-friendly lists of upcoming IPOs. Interactive Brokers does not.

IRAs: While both firms have Individual Retirement Accounts, only Interactive Brokers has the SEP account.

Banking tools: IB customers can get free debit cards. Webull does not yet offer cash management tools (beyond ACH and wire capability).

Fractional-share trading: Both broker-dealers offer this great service. Webull has a $5 minimum, while Interactive Brokers requires $1.

Dividend reinvestment program: Interactive Brokers offers free DRIP service. Webull does not.

Extended hours: Both firms offer trading capability from 4:00 am until 8:00 pm, EST.

Winner: Interactive Brokers

Our Recommendations

Beginners: Neither brokerage firm is ideal for new traders. Webull’s software is a little easier to use, but Interactive Brokers has better learning materials. Take your pick.

Stock/ETF trading: IB seems to have a slight edge with better research tools and direct-access routing.

Small accounts: Either Webull or Interactive Brokers on the IBKR Lite plan.

IRAs: IB has a slight advantage for its SEP IRA.

Long-term investors and retirement savers: Neither firm is ideal here, but Interactive Brokers has a slight edge due to its mutual funds.

Mutual fund trading: Interactive Brokers is the only choice here.

IB vs Webull Final Judgment

Both brokers in this study have performed quite well. Although Interactive Brokers appears to be the winner overall, Webull is attractive in many categories.

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