August 18, 2021

Best Social Trading Apps

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Social trading apps bring community and interaction to the world of investing, but there are a lot to choose from. Find your perfect app in this guide.

Social trading apps allow users to discuss trades, debate strategies and follow what other traders are doing. And nowadays, there are dozens of platforms to choose from.

But which apps actually deliver on the features they promise?

In this guide, discover the best social trading apps on the market today. Plus, learn which U.S. restrictions to be mindful of when using these platforms.

10 Best Social Trading Apps

10 Best Social Trading Apps & Platforms
  1. eToro - Best for Copy-Trading
  2. Public - Best for Curated Investing Themes
  3. ZuluTrade - Best for Trade Recommendations
  4. Trading Motion - Best for Automated Trading
  5. FX Junction - Best for MetaTrader4 Users
  6. Kinfo - Best Supplementary Tool for Your Brokerage
  7. Collective2 - Best for Higher-Risk Trades
  8. Tradency - Inventors of the Mirror Trading Concept
  9. MQL5 - Best for Hands-on Traders
  10. Peeptrade - Best for Research

These apps represent the best that social trading has to offer. Review the details of each to see which one aligns with your trading preferences.

1. eToro - Best for Copy-Trading

Based in the UK, eToro is a popular social trading platform with over 20 million users all over the world. Currently limited to trading cryptocurrency in the U.S., they offer stocks, commodities, ETFs, forex, and CFDs in other jurisdictions.

They're best known for their CopyTrader program, which allows users to mimic the trades of other investors who are ranked by risk and rate of return. Users can interact via a social feed and monitor important stats.

eToro also offers a range of educational content, including market news and analysis, markets guides, and a free demo trading account that lets you practice with $100k in virtual funds.

Securities Traded: Stocks, commodities, cryptocurrency, forex, ETFs, CFDs, indices

Minimum Deposit: For most users, $200; $50 in the U.S.; exceptions by country noted here

Available on desktop, the App Store, and the Google Play Store

Review other popular crypto exchanges in our roundup of the best Coinbase alternatives.

2. Public - Best for Curated Investment Themes

Public is an investing social network based in New York that primarily focuses on stocks and ETFs.

Their aim is to make investing accessible by promoting financial literacy and education, and offering fractional shares of expensive stocks.

The app is free to download and use, with no commissions. It lets users see what others are trading, and who is buying and selling what stocks.

They allow users to follow curated themes—groups of stocks with unifying features, such as "The Crypto Revolution," "For the Win!" (gaming and eSports), "Women in Charge," "Growing Diversity."

Securities Traded: Over 9,000 stocks and ETFs

Minimum Deposit: No minimums

Available on the App Store and the Google Play Store

Public.com

Get a Free Slice of Stock

  • Invest in Stocks and ETFs, Commission-Free and No Account Minimums
  • Follow other investors, share insights, and build your financial literacy within a transparent community
  • Offer valid for U.S. residents 18+ and subject to account approval. There may be other fees associated with trading. See Public.com/disclosures/

3. ZuluTrade - Best for Trade Recommendations

ZuluTrade is another popular social trading network that allows users to follow other traders ranked by performance, stability, behavior, and outlook.

For those looking for a more hands-off approach, they will even give you combos of traders they think you should follow based on your preferences.

ZuluTrade is based in Athens, Greece, and is available in countries all over the world, including the U.S. Their focus is on forex, though they offer other instruments as well.

Securities Traded: Forex, cryptocurrency, stocks, commodities

Minimum Deposit: $200

Available on desktop, the App Store, and the Google Play Store

4. Trading Motion - Best for Automated Trading

Trading Motion works by connecting a supported broker and applying one of their automated trading systems. They offer nearly 3,000 trading systems, developed by a group of 100 professional developers.

The system rates the top-performing systems for users to choose from. Since there are more systems than developers, you may see more than one ranking system designed by the same individual.

In the United States, they operate under the iSystems brand, with a slightly more limited capacity due to regulations.

Securities Traded: Futures

Minimum Deposit: Varies by system, from $300 - $100,000+

Available on desktop only

5. FX Junction - Best for MetaTrader4 Users

FX Junction is another social trading platform that allows users to connect to a supported broker on the MetaTrader4 or MetaTrader5 platform.

Users can follow other traders and get updates on their posts, trades, and comments.

Validated Signal Providers—traders who others auto-copy—can earn income from auto-copiers, who in turn can benefit from the expertise of those they follow.

What is MetaTrader4? MT4 is an electronic Forex trading platform widely used by foreign exchange speculative traders. It was created in 2005.

Securities Traded: Forex

Minimum Deposit: No minimums

Available on desktop only

6. Kinfo - Best Supplementary Tool for Your Current Brokerage

Kinfo is a free-to-use app that connects with a number of popular brokerages to facilitate social trading.

Every user receives a performance rating based on the Sharpe Ratio, and users can follow other traders to see how they're trading.

By incorporating the strategies of a few select investors, you can help to form a potentially successful strategy of your own.

Securities Traded: Kinfo does not execute trades directly

Available on desktop, the App Store, and the Google Play Store

7. Collective2 - Best for Higher-Risk Trades

Collective2, a U.S.-regulated company based in New York, lets users select "strategy managers"—their name for copiable traders. Users connect their brokerage account to their account on Collective2, and then let their chosen strategy take over.

Unlike some of the other social trading apps that are free to use, Collective2 charges monthly fees, and their minimum deposit is quite large and varies by the strategy you select.

Their investments tend toward the highly risky, and therefore they recommend allocating only a fraction of your funds with them.

Securities Traded: Stocks, options, futures, forex (can be limited by package plan)

Minimum Deposit: $5,000 - $100,000

Available on desktop, the App Store, and the Google Play Store

8. Tradency - Inventors of the Mirror Trading Concept

Tradency has less of a social aspect than some of the other platforms, but they still allow users to copy the trades of other accounts.

Their Mirror Trader feature uses algorithms to generate strategies based on successful traders. It's been used by over 200 brokers and 2 million retail clients since 2005.

Connect your account with a supported broker to get started.

Securities Traded: Forex, CFDs, futures

Minimum Deposit: No minimum

Available on desktop only

9. MQL5 - Best for Hands-On Traders

MQL5 requires a bit more hands-on approach than many of the other options listed here. In order to use it, you must have your own MetaTrader 4 or 5 account.

It provides access to systems that you can then run from your MetaTrader dashboard.

With MQL5, you also get access to signal providers, whose trades you can follow at varying prices set by the providers, and a forum of traders and developers.

Minimum Deposit: Depends on the systems you buy

10. Peeptrade - Best for Research

Based in Mexico and operating primarily in Spanish, Peeptrade is one of the few platforms here that doesn't revolve around automatic or copy trading.

Instead, users pay a subscription to track the trading behaviors of professional traders, then they can choose whether or not to copy the trades on their own.

Minimum Deposit: Monthly subscriptions start at $199

What to Look for in a Social Trading App

Before choosing a social trading app, consider these factors to choose the best fit for you.

Availability: Trading is a heavily regulated industry, so not every app may be available where you are. Make sure to check whether you have access.

Assets Traded: Different exchanges support different securities. Determine if you're interested in trading stocks, commodities, forex, cryptocurrencies, or another security

You may need to use more than one app to trade everything you want to, or you could prioritize finding them all in one place.

Features: Data analysis, reports, copy- or mirror-trading, social interactivity, and support will all affect your experience.
Also consider what incentives there are for successful copied traders; the more attractive the offer, the better traders the platform is likely to have.

Fees: Trading fees can take a big chunk out of your earnings. Make sure to keep fees in mind when choosing an exchange. Some fees, like the bid/ask spread, are not always transparent. It's always best to make sure there are no hidden fees you're unaware of.

Security, Privacy, and Regulatory Compliance: It's always important to make sure your data is secure. Look for platforms that employ measures to minimize risk such as two-factor authentication, and follow all of the local regulations where they're registered.

User Base: Since social trading apps are about interacting with other traders, you'll naturally benefit from being where the people are. Popular apps are also more likely to attract experienced traders worth following.

Minimum Deposit: Beginners may get more out of a broker with a low minimum deposit, potentially at the cost of higher fees. Meanwhile, more advanced traders may be able to save money by meeting higher investing requirements.

U.S. Restrictions to Watch Out For

Social trading is more strictly regulated for residents of the U.S. than many other countries due to the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010. Two particular rules apply:

  1. You cannot hedge trades by opening a sell position in an asset you have a long position in, or the other way around, without liquidating the original position either fully or partially.

  2. The first-in, first-out (FIFO) rule requires traders to liquidate multiple positions of the same asset in the same order they were taken, starting with the oldest first.

The consequence of these rules is that it can be difficult for U.S. residents to legally copy traders who live in jurisdictions where hedging is allowed and the FIFO rule doesn't apply.

There are solutions, such as taking opposing positions to traders you're copying in order to avoid hedging, or liquidating positions that would put you in violation of the FIFO rule before the trader you are copying does anything with that asset.

In general, it would probably be safest just to stick with platforms that comply with U.S. regulations.

Bottom Line

Whether you're trading crypto, stocks, or something else, there are plenty of options for social trading. Different platforms have different capabilities and focuses.

Those looking for a very hands-off approach should look into platforms that support copy or mirror trading, like eToro.

Those interested in increasing their knowledge of investing strategy may gravitate toward platforms that track trades with notifications and stats, and offer forums and messaging services.

Whichever you choose, social trading apps can be a useful way to develop your investing technique and round out your portfolio.

Jeremy Harshman is a protector of art and writing at CreditDonkey, a personal finance comparison and reviews website. Write to Jeremy Harshman at jeremy.harshman@creditdonkey.com. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for our latest posts.

Note: This website is made possible through financial relationships with some of the products and services mentioned on this site. We may receive compensation if you shop through links in our content. You do not have to use our links, but you help support CreditDonkey if you do.

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Public.com

Get a Free Slice of Stock

  • Invest in Stocks and ETFs, Commission-Free and No Account Minimums
  • Follow other investors, share insights, and build your financial literacy within a transparent community
  • Offer valid for U.S. residents 18+ and subject to account approval. There may be other fees associated with trading. See Public.com/disclosures/
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