NinjaTrader has an amazing trading platform for those just beginning their trading careers as well as for advanced traders. Its extensive collection of technical analysis tools is perfect for beginners utilizing a demo account, and it even offers a 2-week free trial when you register.
If you want to use NinjaTraders software, you can get it for free when you fund a brokerage account or you can lease the software. You will get access to charts, simulated trading, and market analysis, the essentials for futures trading, even if you get the software for free.
Are you an active futures trader? Look no further than Tradovate. Tradovate offers a Netflix-like approach to commission-free trading and cloud-based solutions. You’ll get an integrated experience you can carry seamlessly across any device whenever you want it.
Tradovate is the very 1st online futures and options brokerage to combine next-generation technology with flat-rate membership pricing. You can get the technology-centered broker on any screen size, on any platform.
3. Discount Trading
Futures traders looking for volume discounts have plenty of options, but few make trading as simple and affordable as Discount Trading. For starters, Discount Trading doesn’t just offer affordable commissions – they have some of the cheapest trading fees of any futures broker currently on the market!
If you make only a single futures trade each month, your commission will be a mere 49 cents per side. However, if you’re an active trader flipping more than 50,000 contracts per month, your commission will be just 19 cents.
4. Optimus Futures
Optimus Futures is a discount futures broker geared towards both beginner and experienced traders alike.
With low account minimums, fast account approvals, and easy funding and withdrawals, Optimus Futures is an ideal solution for anyone interested in trading CME Group’s micro futures with free platforms and low margins. Optimus customers also get access to dedicated staff to address your trading needs at every step, from initial account application and platform set-up to providing ongoing education and resources to help you learn more about the futures markets via guides, videos, podcasts, and articles.
5. Generic Trade
Generic Trade has some of the lowest commission fees of any futures traders at a maximum of $0.59 per trade. Generic Trade prides themselves on transparency and keeps their prices lower than other futures brokers by eliminating the need for salespeople and brokers.
The firm believes modern traders already have such a wealth of information at their disposal they mainly need a firm to execute their trades at the lowest cost. It also doesn’t have minimum account balances and volume requirements, making it assessable to most traders.
TradeStation offers 2 distinct account types: its basic TS GO account aimed at new trades and its more in-depth TS Select account aimed at more advanced traders looking for a comprehensive set of tools and research options.
There’s no minimum account balance required to open a TS GO account. TS Select accounts require a $2,000 minimum deposit.
7. Interactive Brokers
Interactive Brokers for futures trading offers outstanding, competitive fees. Cost is $0.85 for futures and futures options trading, overall, Interactive Brokers offers the lowest margin rates in the industry, between 1.91% to 1.41% (the lowest percentage is for clients with $1 million with Interactive Brokers). It offers a fully-configurable trading platform for knowledgeable traders with more than 50 order types.
IBKR Futures Pricing:
- IBKR Lite: $0.85 per contract
- IBKR Pro: $0.85 per contract; tiered volume discount available
8. TD Ameritrade
TD Ameritrade requires a low account minimum at $1,500 but it’s $2.25 per contract, per side (plus exchange and regulatory fees). TD Ameritrade’s day trade margin is 25% with a $15,000 minimum with virtual trading capabilities and over 60 futures products. With Thinkorswim, there’s no question that entering and executing orders are fast, with many advanced features.
9. Charles Schwab
Charles Schwab’s name seems to be synonymous with the word “education,” and that’s no surprise once you land on Schwab’s web page. After all, “Investment Advice” is a bold, clickable heading directly on the home page. If you’re a futures trader, Schwab Trading Insights will help you, and there are a plethora of opportunities to learn more in Schwab’s active trader futures section.