Lightspeed Review 2022: Pros, Cons and How It Compares – NerdWallet

Where Lightspeed shines

advance trade platforms : Lightspeed offers advanced trading platforms with high-speed execution. first gear options trade costs : Lightspeed ’ mho advanced options trade products don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate come with a higher price chase.

Futures deal : Lightspeed is among the few brokers NerdWallet reviews that offer futures trade.

Where Lightspeed falls short

high gear commissions : Most big brokerages have cut out trade commissions wholly, but you ’ ll even pay a per-share mission at Lightspeed. high minimum investment prerequisite : At $ 10,000, this minimum puts Lightspeed out of reach for many. excessive report fees : There are a lot of fees to sift through that could eat into your returns. not founder friendly : Lightspeed ’ sulfur value lies in fast regulate entrance and execution that benefits day traders and advance traders, not beginners. If order entrance and murder rush are n’t relevant to you, you may be better served by more mainstream brokers.

Lightspeed is best for:

  • advanced traders .
  • Day traders .
  • Options traders .
  • Futures traders .

Lightspeed at a glance

Account minimum

$ 10,000 for Web Trader platform ( $ 2,000 for IRAs ) .
stock trading costs

Lightspeed trader : $ 4.50/trade or $ 0.0045 per share ( $ 1 minimum ) .
Options trades

Lightspeed trader : No base commission ; $ 0.60 per contract ( $ 1 minimum ) .
history fees ( annual, transfer, close, inactivity )

$ 25 minimum monthly commission fee for accounts under $ 15,000. $ 20 IRA opening fee ; $ 35 IRA annual fee ( first year waived ) ; $ 95 IRA closure fee .
Number of no-transaction-fee common funds not rated .
Tradable securities

• Stocks. • ETFs. • Options. • Futures .
Crypto handiness

No cryptocurrencies, but OTC crypto-based products are available .
trade chopine

Lightspeed Trader ( desktop ) for active traders, hedge funds and institutions. $ 130 monthly platform fee ( reduced by commissions generated ).

Lightspeed Web/Mobile Trader for periodic day traders. $ 0 platform fee ; market/data feeds free for nonprofessional traders. Futures trading on Eze EMS platform .

Mobile app

available for io and Android ; features basic functionality of the Lightspeed Web/Mobile Trader platform and after-hours trade .
inquiry and data

Data and analytics from six providers, including TipRanks, Lightscan, and Social Market Analytics all available unblock to clients .
Customer hold options ( includes how easily it is to find key details on the web site )

phone and email confirm 8 ante meridiem – 5 post meridiem Eastern. Urgent trade desk : 4 ante meridiem – 8 post meridiem Eastern .

More details about Lightspeed’s ratings

Account minimum: 1 out of 5 stars

As we ’ ve been saying, Lightspeed ’ s aim audience is professionals or, if not a professional, at least a badly active or high-volume trader. inactive, the agent ’ s minimum investment requirements are higher than some competitors, including interactional Brokers and TradeStation. At $ 10,000, Lightspeed Web/Mobile Trader has the lowest initial and ongoing account minimal prerequisite among the company ’ mho offerings. ( retirement accounts on this platform require a $ 2,000 minimum. ) The minimums are higher — $ 25,000 for a regular brokerage house and $ 10,000 for a retirement score — for the more robust Lightspeed Trader platform, equally well as the other services aimed at super-serious investors : Eze EMS ( once RealTick ), Sterling Trader and LivevolX.

Stock trading costs: 2 out of 5 stars

Lightspeed ’ s commissions used to be a high bespeak ; they ‘re nowadays a low. As more and more brokers have moved to $ 0 commissions for stocks, options and ETFs, Lightspeed nobelium longer stands out here for anything but options trades. The caller ‘s standard commission for stocks and ETFs is $ 4.50 per trade, though there are ways to pay less. Lightspeed ’ s volume discounts help a bit : The price drops to $ 4 a trade for investors who make between 250 and 750 trades a calendar month and a low of $ 2.50 if you make more than 10,000 trades a month. Per-share prices start at $ 0.0045 per share ( $ 1 minimum trade commission ) if you trade fewer than 249,999 shares per month and decay from there. however, this per-share price choice is n’t available on Lightspeed Web and Mobile, which besides has a minimum commission of $ 4.50 on any options trades.

Options trades: 4 out of 5 stars

Lightspeed charges no base perpetration for options trades, and the contract fee is good $ 0.60 per compress for those trading fewer than 500 contracts a month. There ‘s a $ 1 minimal, but even indeed, the cost is competitive. It gets even more therefore for active traders who benefit from the agent ‘s bulk discounts : The per-contract tip drops to angstrom little as $ 0.20 for those trade more than 100,000 contracts per calendar month.

Account fees: 1.5 out of 5 stars

Fees truly hurt Lightspeed in our scoring rubric. Customers with bill balances of less than $ 15,000 are charged a $ 25 monthly minimum committee tip, minus any actual commissions they paid during the former month. There are besides fees on retirement accounts : a $ 20 IRA opening fee, $ 95 close tip and $ 35 annual fee ( waived for the beginning year ).

Number of no-transaction-fee mutual funds: Not rated

Lightspeed doesn ’ t offer any common funds, but considering the agent is best for active traders and reciprocal funds are typically a buy-and-hold investing, this probably international relations and security network ’ t a huge concern for Lightspeed ’ s aim consultation.

Tradable securities: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Lightspeed is one of a handful of brokers NerdWallet rates that offers futures trade. Lightspeed ‘s going rate is $ 1.29 per side, and it has multiple platforms to serve futures traders. Eze EMS is a desktop platform for active futures, neckcloth and options traders. There ’ s a monthly platform tip of $ 325, while the background chopine CQG has $ 35 monthly fee, and focuses entirely on futures trade. however, overall, Lightspeed ’ s investment selection is poor. While Lightspeed gets recognized as one of the few brokers we review that offers futures trading, there is a gape hole in its offerings for average investors : In addition to not offering common funds, the broker besides has no commission-free ETFs. That ’ s not surprising for a trader-focused broker, but it is a gap worth considering if these are on your list of must-haves.

Crypto availability: 2 out of 5 stars

Lightspeed does n’t offer any cryptocurrencies immediately, but traders do have access to crypto-based products, such as Grayscale Bitcoin Trust or Bitcoin futures.

Trading platform: 5 out of 5 stars

Lightspeed aims to fill the needs of a very specific kind of investor : a very active voice, high-volume trader. The ideal client ? A professional trader. To account for that, Lightspeed has multiple trading platforms, with several that cater about entirely to hedge funds and institutions. Two — Lightspeed Web/Mobile Trader and the desktop-based Lightspeed Trader — are outdo suited for nonprofessional individual investors. Non-pro store and options traders pay no monthly market or datum fees on Lightspeed Web/Mobile Trader. The chopine comes with real-time Level 1 streaming data for stocks and options, historical charts, watch lists and TipRanks analyst research. For more active traders, the desktop-based Lightspeed Trader chopine allows for expedited order introduction and execution. You ‘ll pay a $ 130 monthly chopine fee for access, but the fee is reduced by any commissions generated. Lightspeed Trader offers direct-market access. Orders are send neat to one of 100 rout destinations, skipping the typical pit hold on at an mediator brokerage house firm. This speeds up rate fulfillment by seconds ( even nanoseconds ), which matters to day traders. Note that customers using these platforms will pay rout fees ( e.g., $ 0.0031 to $ 0.0036 for NYSE orders ) on top of the deal committee. besides included are real-time streaming Level 2 data ( more robust than Level 1 ), TipRanks and Lightscan stock screen. For those matter to in test-driving the Lightspeed Trader platform, we recommend opening a barren demo/paper trade bill.

Mobile app: 1 out of 5 stars

Users tend to rate Lightspeed ’ s mobile app ill. however, the mobile app is precisely one of Lightspeed ’ s many platforms.

Research and data: 3 out of 5 stars

Lightspeed offers data and research from six providers, including TipRanks, Lightscan and Social Market Analytics. While these are strong sources of data, the choice international relations and security network ’ thyroxine vitamin a wide as with some early brokers.

Customer support options: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Lightspeed ’ s customer support is reasonably limited compared to the always-on approach many other brokers have taken recently. presently, their call and electronic mail customer digest hours are 8am to 5pm EST, with pressing craft desk support from 4am to 8pm EST.

Is Lightspeed right for you?

Lightspeed is designed chiefly for institutions, hedge fund managers and extremely active, high-volume day traders. Things that hurt the agent in NerdWallet ’ south rate organization — high trade requirements, lack of no-transaction-fee ETFs, no portfolio-building guidance and few educational tools — don ’ triiodothyronine topic much to Lightspeed ’ s target clientele. But they are significant shortcomings for casual investors shopping for a broker. If you ’ re still concern, Lightspeed welcomes electric potential customers to request a demonstration bill. otherwise, active nonprofessional traders should check out TradeStation and Interactive Brokers ; both offer $ 0 commissions and professional-grade trading tools that are a better match for amateurs.

How do we review brokers?

NerdWallet ’ s comprehensive examination recapitulation action evaluates and ranks the largest U.S. brokers by assets under management, along with emerging industry players. Our bearing is to provide an independent appraisal of providers to help arm you with information to make sound, informed judgements on which ones will best meet your needs. We cling to strict guidelines for editorial integrity. We collect data directly from providers through detail questionnaires, and conduct first-hand test and observation through provider demonstrations. The questionnaire answers, combined with demonstrations, interviews of personnel at the providers and our specialists ’ hands-on research, fuel our proprietary assessment march that scores each provider ’ randomness operation across more than 20 factors. The final end product produces star ratings from poor ( one star ) to excellent ( five stars ). Ratings are rounded to the nearest half-star. For more details about the categories considered when rat brokers and our process, read our full moon methodology .

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Category : Finance

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