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Best brokers for beginners in South Africa in 2023

Alpaca Trading Logo
1st place
Alpaca Trading
nextmarkets Logo
2nd place
nextmarkets
Visit broker
52.55% of retail CFD accounts lose money
EasyEquities Logo
3rd place
EasyEquities

Top online brokers for beginners in South Africa in 2023


  1. Alpaca Trading - the best broker for beginners in South Africa in 2023. Great API trading service. Free stock & ETF trading. Fantastic charting tools.
  2. nextmarkets - Commission free real stocks and ETFs. Quick and easy account opening. Great email and phone support.
  3. EasyEquities - Low trading fees and non-trading fees. Excellent educational materials. Easy and fully digital account opening.
  4. TradeZero - Real stocks and ETFs are commission-free. Quick and easy account opening. Excellent education and customer support.
  5. Swissquote - Access to many markets and products. No inactivity fee. Rock-solid background.

How did BrokerChooser select the best online brokers for beginners in South Africa?


  • We conducted interviews with newcomers who had little to zero trading experience trading.
  • We checked whether brokers offers educational tools, like a demo account or learning material.
  • We opened an account and tested the trading platform with our own money.
  • We looked at how easy and user-friendly it is to open an account for beginners.
  • We checked how easy it is to understand fees for new users.
  • We also checked and compared 102 brokers with a special focus on fees and their trading platform.
Save hours of research!
Our expert team has done all the work for you, and reviewed brokers based on BrokerChooser's unique methodology. Now let's jump straight to the results.

Best brokers for beginners
Overview of the best brokers for beginners


While many online brokers suitable for beginners offer an excellent service, the ones in our toplist go the extra mile.

Best brokers for beginners data compiled for December 2022
Broker Minimum deposit Account activated in Credit/debit card deposit Demo account available
Alpaca Trading $0 1 day No Yes
nextmarkets $0 1 day Yes Yes
EasyEquities $0 >3 days Yes Yes
TradeZero $250 1 day No Yes
Swissquote $0 1 day Yes Yes

Fees at the best brokers for beginners

Alpaca Trading nextmarkets EasyEquities TradeZero Swissquote
US stock $0.0 $0.0 $5.0 $0.0 $25.0
UK stock - - - $0.0 $28.3
FX commission per lot Not available No commission is charged Not available Not available No commission is charged

All commissions are for opening a position, holding for a week, and closing.

Non-trading fees at the best brokers for beginners

Non-trading fees are charges that are not directly related to a trade and typically include the account maintenance fee, deposit/withdrawal fees and the inactivity fee.

Alpaca Trading nextmarkets EasyEquities TradeZero Swissquote
Account fee No No No No No
Inactivity fee No No No No No
Withdrawal fee $0 $0 $0 $50 $10

Best brokers for beginners
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And now, let's see in detail the best online brokers for beginners in 2023 one by one.

Alpaca Trading Logo

#1 Best broker for beginners
Alpaca Trading

Recommended for traders interested in algorithmic stock trading

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Alpaca Trading snapshot
Minimum deposit $0
US stock fee $0.0
Demo account Yes
Mobile platform score 4.2 stars
Time to open account 1 day
Inactivity fee No
Read review For a detailed analysis of Alpaca Trading services, check out our review for 2023
nextmarkets Logo

#2 Best broker for beginners
nextmarkets

Recommended for traders and investors looking for low fees

Visit broker
52.55% of retail CFD accounts lose money

nextmarkets snapshot
Minimum deposit $0
US stock fee $0.0
Demo account Yes
Mobile platform score 4.8 stars
Time to open account 1 day
Inactivity fee No
Read review For a detailed analysis of nextmarkets services, check out our review for 2023
EasyEquities Logo

#3 Best broker for beginners
EasyEquities

Recommended for long-term investors focusing on stocks and etfs

Visit broker

EasyEquities snapshot
Minimum deposit $0
US stock fee $5.0
Demo account Yes
Mobile platform score 4.3 stars
Time to open account >3 days
Inactivity fee No
Read review For a detailed analysis of EasyEquities services, check out our review for 2023
TradeZero Logo

#4 Best broker for beginners
TradeZero

Recommended for investors and traders interested in commission-free trading and a focus on us stocks and options.

Visit broker

TradeZero snapshot
Minimum deposit $250
US stock fee $0.0
Demo account Yes
Mobile platform score 4.0 stars
Time to open account 1 day
Inactivity fee No
Read review For a detailed analysis of TradeZero services, check out our review for 2023
Swissquote Logo

#5 Best broker for beginners
Swissquote

Recommended for affluent investors who value safety and are ok with higher fees

Visit broker

Swissquote snapshot
Minimum deposit $0
US stock fee $25.0
Demo account Yes
Mobile platform score 4.7 stars
Time to open account 1 day
Inactivity fee No
Read review For a detailed analysis of Swissquote services, check out our review for 2023

Best brokers for beginners
What makes a great broker for beginners

Now you know which are the best brokers for beginners. Curious how we assembled this list? Let's go through two points in a bit more detail: whether these brokers are reliable, and what criteria we looked at as we compiled the list.

Are these brokers reliable?

You can be sure none of the brokers in our top list is a scam. They are all regulated by at least one top-tier authority. Some of them are also listed on a stock exchange, and some have a banking background, which all add an extra layer of security.

How did BrokerChooser pick the best brokers for beginners?

Here at BrokerChooser, we test online brokers along nearly 500 criteria, using real accounts and real money. We don't want to overwhelm you, so we'll list only the three most important criteria we used to identify the best brokers for beginners:

3 most important criteria for finding the best brokers for beginners in 2023
1. Fees The overall cost of a typical trade can be 10-15 times higher at one broker than at another. So it pays to take a close look at fees.
2. Mobile trading platform A user-friendly and well-equipped trading platform can significantly increase your comfort with trading.
3. Education Are you unfamiliar with concepts like spread or leverage? Good educational tools can help you understand the basics of trading.

Best brokers for beginners
Glossary

Here is a glossary to help you with some terms in our review:

Inactivity fee: a fee that is charged when a customer has not done any buying or selling on their brokerage account for a specific amount of time determined by the brokerage.

Withdrawal fee: an amount you need to pay when you withdraw money from your trading account to your bank account.

Deposit fee: this is charged when you send money to your trading account at an online broker. The fee may differ depending on the method of transfer (i.e. bank card, bank transfer, e-wallets, etc.).

Regulators: these are official bodies established by governments or other organizations to oversee the functioning and fairness of financial markets, including markets, exchanges and firms. They also oversee that investors are not fooled by scams, and in case of wrongdoing, they try to provide some level of financial and legal backing.

Investor protection: this means that up to a certain limit, you get your money back if the broker goes into bankruptcy or commits fraud.

Non-trading fees: charges not directly related to trading, such as deposit/withdrawal fees or inactivity fees.

Trading fees: these are charged when you trade; for instance, in the form of a commission, spreads, financing rates, margin rates or a conversion fee.

Still sounds confusing? You can dive into our broader glossary explaining all the exotic terms of the financial world. We also have a forex trading glossary dedicated to terms specifically related to forex trading.

Best brokers for beginners
Further reading for beginners

Best brokers for beginners
FAQ

Which broker should I use as a beginner?

Low fees and an excellent mobile platform make a broker great for beginners. Beginners can also benefit greatly if a broker has excellent educational material, and tools, such as a demo account. The best way to start your journey in the world of investing is by learning. We provide a great starting point on our education page, where you can find a lot of useful learning materials. Here we give you some tips on how to start investing. To find the best online broker for your level of expertise and risk-tolerance, use our find my broker tool.

Where should a beginner invest in stocks?

Before you make stock investments, you should draw up a plan, which involves several basic questions you ought to think about, such as what is your objective, how much time do you want to spend investing and what level of risk you want to take. For beginners, one of the best ways to to starting investing in stocks is choosing an index fund or stock mutual funds, which are an easy and low-cost way to tip your toe into the stock market. We put together a guide on how to start investing in stocks, and how to buy shares online. We explicitly guide you through how to invest in stocks. We also give you tips on how much you should invest when you are starting out. You can also browse through our top recommendations for best trading platforms for stocks.

Is trading gambling?

Trading is not gambling, although some poeple might treat it like that, but they will learn quickly that gamblers lose their money. The goal of a trader is to make predictions that will be as accurate as possible to make money, while gamblers can't predict anything, they bet. People who trade for the thrill of it, or because they want to prove something, or can’t accept losing on the market from time to time, and don’t have a plan or consistency, are trading in a gambling style. New online trading apps have recently come under the spotlight for bringing a gambling aspect into trading. The gamification of trading, with easy-to-use online platforms, little education for retail traders and the social pressure of ‘FOMO’ also contribute to a gambling attitude on the market. Serious traders should consider their objectives, their attitudes to risk, and carefully devise an investment strategy when entering a market.

Is trading hard to learn?

Trading is not diffficult to learn if you invest enough time and energy into it. But that is a big if. Plenty of people trade, but the more time you spend studying trading, the more you practice, - as with everything else -, the better results you can expect. Knowing yourself, your attitude to risk-taking, and being patient and disciplined are also crucial factors if you want to be successful. Keep a cool head, don’t look for easy money, commit to studying trading and always have a trading plan. Our aim is to make personal investing as clear and accessible for you, as possible. Our educational page is a good starting point. You can also learn from our expert traders about the difference between investing and trading, and learn here about how to become a trader. You can also learn about different investment strategies from us.

Author of this article

Ádám Nasli

Author of this article

Ádám worked in banking and investment, and holds a professional degree in this field. He is a motivated finance expert, having joined BrokerChooser in 2018. He's also eager to help people find the best investment provider for them, and to make the investment sector as transparent as possible. In his spare time, he loves learning new things, especially data science, algo-trading, programming and trading.

Ádám Nasli

Analyst head

Ádám worked in banking and investment, and holds a professional degree in this field. He is a motivated finance expert, having joined BrokerChooser in 2018. He's also eager to help people find the best investment provider for them, and to make the investment sector as transparent as possible. In his spare time, he loves learning new things, especially data science, algo-trading, programming and trading.

Everything you find on BrokerChooser is based on reliable data and unbiased information. We combine our 10+ years finance experience with readers feedback. Read more about our methodology

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