The best options trading platforms are finally here in Europe and good tools are now no longer exclusive to the US.
Options trading is reserved for the shrewdest and most experienced traders.
The potential profits from options are huge (and so are the losses).
To make money trading options, you need a powerful and affordable tool from the best options trading platforms in Europe.
I mention Europe because you are probably using an outdated or overpriced platform in your country.
Having tried them all, I will show you which are the best platforms to trade options in Europe.
List of the best trading platforms for options for European citizens
|Starting from 0,65$ per contract
|Starting from $1 per contract
|Starting from $0.65 per contract
|Starting from 5€ per month
+ €0.75 per contract (only on index)
Let’s take a look at them one by one!
Freedom24 (My Best Options Broker)
Of the platforms I have tested, Freedom24 is my favourite for a number of reasons.
Freedom Finance Europe (the official name of the company) provides seamless access to trading in more than 800.000 call and put options on US stocks.
The commissions are fair, especially for those who choose the Euro account, and the app is so easy to use that even less experienced traders will feel comfortable.
Trading options with this broker is more expensive if you choose the all-inclusive USD account and you pay up to $3 per contract.
Of course, here we are free to trade options on the US markets, so we are free to exercise our pre-expiration right (which is not guaranteed with European-style options).
If we wait until the natural expiry of our US options with Freedom24, we pay nothing.
Freedom24 also offers free investment ideas for options trading with 20% average return.
Advantages and disadvantages of the Freedom24 options broker:
Let’s look at them one by one.
- European options not available (who cares anyway)
- Trading from the app is better than trading from the web platform
- Extremely easy to use
- Clear and uncluttered interface
- 1,000,000 instruments available
- No costs for natural expiry dates
- Options trading is possible also through the API
- S&P 500 NANOS options (with a lot size of x1 instead of x100)
- US options on 2500 stocks from S&P 500 and Russel 2000 indexes
- New options could be added by the request of the client (this is very unique)
This platform also offers a nice interest up to 8,7% on the uninvested cash.
Is Freedom24 as an European option trading platform regulated?
YES. Freedom24 is regulated by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC) and therefore it is fully licensed to operate across all EU member-states. In addition to this, Freedom24 is part of the NASDAQ-listed Freedom Holding Corp. in the US that is subject to the U.S. SEC regulations. This adds an extra layer of security in my opinion.
Disclaimer: Investments in stocks and ti buy securities always carry the risk of losing your capital. Forecasts or past performance are no guarantee of successful investments and future achievements. The access to a particular financial instrument is subject to an appropriateness test.
Read the complete Freedom 24 Review.
After Freedom24, this broker needs no introduction and has earned the trust of hundreds of thousands of active traders worldwide.
Those who choose Interactive Brokers do not do so to save on commissions, but mainly for the name and prestige of the brand. In fact, this broker has been around since 1975.
The quality of execution is high and the analysis tools provided will appeal to advanced traders. I found their Trader Workstation impressive but a little intimidating at first.
In fact, Interactive Broker is not known for being a good platform for beginners in options trading.
Recently it has made improvements for less advanced users, but it remains the tool of choice for those who have the time to study and understand how it works.
- Not suitable for beginner and intermediate traders
- Average cost per contract
- Low to medium trading costs
- Wide availability of tools
- Good analytical tools
Is Interactive brokers as an International option trading platform regulated?
YES. Interactive Brokers is available in Europe and it is regulated by the Bank of Hungary, SEC, FINRA.
This platform is created around the needs of advanced investors willing to trade a lot.
TastyTrade commissions are different from those from other brokers and are not very expensive for such platform.
Tastytrade offers comprehensive options analytics, intuitive trade input, and competitive commissions without compromising quality.
Their analytics cover what options traders use to call “the Greeks” for multi-leg strategies, and profitability graphs.
This platform is designed to meet the needs of advanced investors who want to trade a lot.
TastyTrade’s commissions are different from those of other brokers and are not very expensive for such a platform.
In addition to this, I have experienced myself their easy order entry with preset trade structures for selected options strategies like vertical spreads or butterflies. Users can adjust expiration dates and strike prices, while the platform provides real probabilities for strategy profitability. I mean, that’s great.
What is nice is that, like Freedom24, they also offer ETFs, stocks and “ordinary assets”.
Pros and Cons of Tastytrade for options trading:
- The news feed is not real time
- It is all about trading. Long-term investors may feel disoriented
- Cheap but not the cheapest
- Web experience is a bit better compared to mobile app
- Educational resources are great for intermediate traders who want to grow
- Lots of advanced charts and information while trading
- It is a quite popular choice in the US that only recently become available for European option traders
- Customer service if quite fast
Is Tastytrade as an international option trading platform regulated?
YES. Tastytrade (ex Tastyworks) is regulated by SEC and FINRA.
DEGIRO is not exactly an options trading platform, but since it is so popular with traders in Europe (myself included), I have decided to mention it.
In fact, you won’t be able to trade options on US stocks on DEGIRO, only on indexes.
That’s fine for most novice options traders.
DEGIRO can be a way to get your feet wet in the world of options trading, especially for those who already use it and don’t want to open a new trading account just to trade derivatives.
Don’t expect DEGIRO to be the cheapest and most sophisticated.
Advantages and disadvantages of DEGIRO:
- Rather expensive for options trading
- Basic platform when it comes to advanced options strategies
- I cannot trade options on stocks but only on indexes
- I don’t believe DEGIRO is the best option trading platform in Germany but still reasonable
- Some users may be already clients and may want to test options trading without switching broker yet
- Basic sometimes is better than overcomplicated for beginners
Is DEGIRO as an European option trading platform regulated?
YES. DEGIRO is available in Europe and it is regulated by BaFin in Germany.
More option trading brokers in Europe I don’t like (yet)
We traders are not all the same, and we all have different opinions on what a good option trading platform should be.
This is why, for the sake of completeness, here I need mention 2 more European option trading platforms on which I don’t have a complete knowledge of (yet):
- Saxo (I haven’t tried this but my fellow traders say it is expensive and support is not the best)
- Swissquote (a popular options in some counties, it is not specialised in options and has a complex pricing structure)
If you don’t want to trade only options, have a look at the official best brokers in Europe list.
What does it mean to trade options?
Over the past decade, the proliferation of online brokers has democratised access to financial tools and instruments once reserved for professionals.
Options have become one of the most popular products among retail traders.
Options trading is a financial practice involving the buying and selling of options contracts on regulated markets. Traders can take long (by buying options) or short (by selling options) positions to speculate on the price movement of an underlying asset, such as stocks, indices or commodities. This type of trading allows investors to take advantage of leverage and implement complex strategies to manage risk or seek profit in different market conditions.
PUT and CALL options explained:
|Right to SELL
|Obligation to Buy
|Right to Buy
|Obligation to Sell
Benefits of Options Trading
Options represent a distinct asset class and offer unique advantages when compared to trading stocks, ETFs, or bonds. These benefits include:
- Risk Hedging: Option premiums can help offset potential losses if the value of the underlying asset declines.
- Controlled Risk: The risk premium is predetermined upfront, providing clarity on potential losses.
- Steady Income: Options can generate fixed income through the premium received without needing to purchase the underlying asset.
- Profit Potential regardless of Market Phases: Options enable profits to be made in both rising and falling markets, as well as when markets are lateral.
Options trading in Europe on Reddit
There are only a few discussions on Reddit about the best trading platforms is Europe fo options.
Most Redditors say that US options broker don’t allow Europeans to use them and this is true.
Some users on Reddit say they don’t like Interactive Broker for option trading.
Conclusions and winner: Best Options Broker in Europe 2024
My best choice to trade options as an European citizen is Freedom24.
Freedom24 has all you need from beginners to advanced traders. Pricing is ok and security is good.
Investments in securities and other financial instruments always involve the risk of loss of your capital. The forecast or past performance is no guarantee of future results. It is essential to do your own analysis before making any investment. The access to a particular financial instrument is subject to an appropriateness test.
I believe Freedom24 is the best option for traders form Germany, Portugal, Netherlands and worldwide. Europe presents a rich array of high-quality option brokers, each presenting distinct features and benefits. Regardless of your level of experience, I believe selecting the appropriate broker is pivotal for achieving success in the realm of options trading.
I have used my experience to write this article that has delved into some of Europe’s premier option brokers, showing the reasons behind their prominence in the industry.
Options trading might seem overwhelming initially, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll discover new investment possibilities not available with stocks or ETFs. With options, you can limit your risk before making a trade and control larger positions with less money. I am not saying it is risk-free but just that you can really control the risk as much as you want.
Just remember, there are a few things to watch out for when trading options in Europe. Some platforms have structure and pricing designed for the US market, which might not work for EU residents.
Let’s be honest, when it comes to investing in Europe, we normally pay more and get less compared to our fellow investors in the US. Still, with this list I am sure I have helped you a bit to get the information you were looking for.
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