Just2Trade was originally founded in 2007 as a deep discount broker with a focus on very active, high-volume traders. In 2015 Just2Trade was acquired by Russian-owned WhoTrades, Inc., which specializes in online and social trading.
Just2Trade’s cost structure and technology offerings will be of most interest to active, experienced investors. Traders who need access to stocks, options, futures, futures options, and international markets are likely to see the most value with a Just2Trade account. These types of investors will appreciate the flexibility of executing their trades at comparably very low costs through Just2Trade’s platform or third-party applications.
Just2Trade is similar in many ways to other online brokers that cater to high-volume traders. However, even new or small investors should still be able to easily navigate Just2Trade’s default trading application and brokerage technology. With additional experience, new investors will be able to add functionality and technology without moving to a new brokerage.
This review focuses on Just2Trade’s features and fees for account holders in the U.S. Investors outside the U.S. may choose to open an account with Just2Trade’s sister Cyprus-registered company for access to spot forex and CFD’s in addition to the other instruments provided by the U.S. firm.
Stocks, ETFs, and ADRs can be traded for $2.50 per trade or options for $2.50 per trade and $0.50 per contract.
High-volume traders can execute trades for as low as $0.001 per share and $0.35 per contract.
Just2Trade’s technology can be supplemented with more-advanced third-party applications.
A minimum account balance of $2,000 is required and inactivity fees may be applied.
Most screening and analysis tools were unavailable without adding third-party applications.
Customer support is not available 24/7.
Even Just2Trade’s basic web trading interface includes the ability to use many advanced order types. Using basket orders or more complicated conditional orders requires access to one of the advanced training applications provided by Just2Trade or third-party partners. Navigating the basic trading applications (Just2Trade Lite, and Just2Trade Plus) is very easy and intuitive. Because of the focus on active investors, order entry forms and tickets were convenient, and defaults can be set to pre-fill many of the entry boxes.
Customization is limited on the default trading application, but Just2Trade Plus is more flexible. Investors familiar with standard active trader platform layouts such as TD Ameritrade’s thinkorswim or Interactive Brokers should be able to easily navigate Just2Trade Plus. Layouts and default chart settings are easy to save and change, although, the customizability in these two default applications fell short of others in the industry. For example, trading from the chart, basket orders, and advanced conditional orders are only available in the third-party applications.
Streaming real-time data is available on all the trading platforms and watchlists. Although the charts in the entry-level trading applications had limited functionality, they were easy to use and had an attractive, clean appearance. The third-party trading applications were much more robust and should be familiar to experienced investors. For example, what Just2Trade calls “Sterling Trader” is actually MetaTrader 5 (MT5) from MetaQuotes. The OEC Trader for futures and futures options trading is Gain Capital’s platform. It's confusing that the trading platforms have different names on the website versus what is described in account notifications.
Just2Trade accepts payment for order flow from its clearing firms like Speedroute LLC (which owned by Overstock.com). Payment for order flow is a controversial practice because it creates a conflict of interest for the broker has a responsibility to seek the best price possible for their client while, at the same time, optimizing revenue from order flow. Just2Trade does not disclose its price improvement stats, preventing evaluation of them in that respect.
Like most new online brokers, setting up an account only takes a few minutes, assuming you don’t read the many pages of disclosures and agreements. The account registration forms provide fairly clear guidance for the required responses if you want approval to use your brokerage account to trade on margin or to engage in naked option selling.
Once the account is set up, the default web-based trading application is available. Investors can then apply for access to one of Just2Trade’s advanced applications or one of the third-party applications. Navigating the entry-level platforms and the brokerage website is very easy and order tickets are available from virtually any location in either of the web-based trading applications. Although investors can make some modifications to the custom Just2Trade applications, the advanced platforms are more flexible.
Mobile and Emerging Tech
Just2Trade has mobile applications that match both the default Just2Trade Pro and the Just2Trade Plus web platforms. The interface in both apps is intuitive and fairly similar to their desktop and browser-based counterparts. Products that can be traded in the desktop and web-based platform can also be traded in the mobile applications. Order entry is relatively intuitive but didn’t allow for complex conditional orders. The charts in the Just2Trade Plus mobile app were more customizable than in the alternative.
On the devices that used to evaluate Just2Trade’s mobile apps, we experienced an unusually high level of instability and crashes. The user reviews in Google’s Play Store and the Apple App Store were mixed and many users pointed out the same problems our reviewer experienced. The watchlist and account information in the mobile apps should match what an investor sees in their desktop or web-based application; however, our testing found synchronization to be inconsistent.
Range of Offerings
Just2Trade offers a broad selection of markets and trading instruments. However, in order to manage futures, futures options, stocks, ETFs, and stock options from the same trading interface, an investor will need to use one of the third-party trading applications. Additionally, investors may find it difficult to enter spread option orders because the default applications only allow single-leg orders.
Similar to the issues experienced with multi-leg options strategies, while it is possible to trade bonds at Just2Trade, the trading applications do not make this easy. Mutual funds are also difficult to trade or find in the Just2Trade trading platforms. However, trading U.S. and international equities and ETFs is efficient and straightforward.
News and Research
Apart from a newsfeed from Yahoo! Finance, there is limited news and research available in the default Just2Trade applications. Just2Trade has many partners and third-party providers that offer additional news and analysis for Just2Trade account holders as an alternative source. Some of these third-party resources have news, recommendations, and other research available for free. Others charge for their services.
Just2Trade does not offer screening tools for stocks, mutual funds, or options strategies. However, the connection with several third-party providers that do have stock screening tools and other research amenities may fill the gap for investors who don’t mind a fragmented experience. The charts in all of the Just2Trade applications had a polished appearance and were very functional, though not state-of-the-art. However, these charts should meet the needs of most casual technical analysts.
Portfolio Analysis and Reports
Beyond the most basic account reporting and tracking functions, Just2Trade does not provide any additional portfolio analysis or planning tools. For example, investors cannot make tax lot choices when planning their exits and the tax accounting features are limited to the required end of year reports.
As usual, investors can fill the gap with third-party tools, some of which are available for free but others charge a fee. Deficiencies like this may be a non-issue for traders who focus on low costs and flexible choice of trading platforms. We believe many individual investors will be frustrated by the missing features when they need them.
Customer Service and Help
Customer service reps are not as available – 24/7 or 24/5 – at Just2Trade. During business hours (9 a.m.-6 p.m. ET Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Friday), Just2Trade’s customer service is available by phone or via online chat. In the tests conducted during this review, hold times were average (usually less than five minutes), and the account reps/brokers were very knowledgeable about individual stock and option trading questions. However, they were far less helpful for any questions about the third-party trading applications, mutual funds, IRA accounts, or option spread questions.
Just2Trade provides an FAQ on the website that covered a variety of topics but none in any depth. It’s unlikely that an investor will be able to answer anything but the most simple questions with the online resources provided. Some investors may become frustrated when searching the web for Just2Trade help because of the confusion between the U.S. and European sister companies with the same name. Our review found the resources and help for customers of the European version of Just2Trade to be superior to those for customers at the U.S. broker.
Education and Security
Just2Trade provides virtually no education about trading and investing strategies beyond a few videos and years-old webinars on Just2Trade’s YouTube channel that cover some of the features of their trading applications. Although Just2Trade’s parent company, WhoTrades, LLC, purports to provide investor education, most investors will not find anything very useful for free. Investors who need some additional education to feel confident in the market will need to find alternative sources if they choose Just2Trade as their broker.
Just2Trade’s mobile platforms (Just2Trade Plus, and Just2Trade Pro,) include the option to require a PIN or fingerprint authentication in order to access an account. The mobile versions of the third-party provided applications vary in security measures that don’t exceed what’s provided in Just2Trade’s custom applications. The web-based default trading applications didn’t provide security beyond a username and password. Just2Trade’s U.S. company is regulated by FINRA and accounts are insured by SIPC.
In addition to the flexibility around trading platforms and third-party technology, the other big advantage with Just2Trade is cost. Investors can trade stocks for $2.50 per trade or as low as $0.001 per share for high-volume traders. Options can be traded for $2.50 per trade plus $0.50 per contract or as little as $0.35 per contract for active option investors. However, if investors have less than $2,500 in their account, the cost per trade goes up to $4.00. Accounts with less than $2,000 are prevented from trading at all.
The lowest commission plans include monthly minimum commissions that will be charged if your activity is less than that amount. At the time of this review, the minimum commission required per month was $333 for traders on the per-share commission plan. Other account fees were proportional to the average in the industry with the exception of an inactivity charge of $15 per quarter if fewer than five trades have been placed and there is less than $50,000 in the account.
What You Need to Know
Like most brokers that specialize in the high-volume trader, Just2Trade doesn’t have much to offer individual investors who may need education, portfolio analysis, or additional research tools like stock screeners. Day traders, very active swing traders, or professional investors may find a lot to like at Just2Trade, but the more-advanced third-party trading applications and technology are likely to be more attractive than Just2Trade’s default trading applications.
Just2Trade is a good fit for independent investors who are concerned about costs and have their own preferences about the technology they use for research and trading. In particular, investors who are developing their own algorithmic trading strategies would appreciate how easy it is to develop APIs that interface with Just2Trade for execution.
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