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Best futures brokers in 2022
NinjaTrader logo
Optimus Futures logo
Interactive Brokers logo
TradeStation logo
AMP Futures logo

To help you to find the best futures brokers in 2022, we went ahead and did the research for you. We examined 101 quality online brokers and narrowed down the list by checking their futures fees and futures product selection. We also compared their trading platforms, research tools and the overall quality of their services. And now, without further ado...

Our top 5 picks for best online futures brokers:

  1. NinjaTrader is the winner.
  2. Optimus Futures takes second place.
  3. Interactive Brokers rounds out the top three.
  4. TradeStation is numero quattro.
  5. AMP Futures just made the list at number five.
Best futures brokers in 2022
Broker Info
#1 NinjaTrader Global platform provider focusing on futures trading Visit broker
#2 Optimus Futures Global platform provider focusing on futures trading Visit broker
#3 Interactive Brokers International broker providing all asset classes Visit broker
#4 TradeStation US stockbroker Visit broker
#5 AMP Futures Global platform provider focusing on futures trading Visit broker

What makes a good broker for trading futures? Most importantly, they need to offer fair futures fees. To size them up in this regard, we checked the costs of trading stock index contracts. Second, they should offer access to a variety of exchanges (like the CME, CBOT, NYMEX, etc). A great desktop platform that makes technical analysis easy also weighs heavily. Last, but not least, we prefer brokers with a great overall service quality and score, in other words brokers that charge very low or no withdrawal fees, have a great customer service and score high in the safety ranking.

These features may sound obvious and easy to list, but they're hard to figure out. We speak from experience because we test brokers based on close to 500 criteria, with real accounts and real money.

And now, let's see the best futures brokers in 2022 one by one, starting with the winner, NinjaTrader.

NinjaTrader Logo

#1 Best futures brokers
NinjaTrader

4.4

NinjaTrader is a US-based software company that provides a great trading platform with advanced research tools. The company was founded in 2003.

Besides providing the software, NinjaTrader is a registered NFA (National Futures Association) company and an introducing broker of brokers like Phillip Capital and Dorman Trading. The introducing broker status means that your assets and cash are held with a broker, like Phillip Capital, but the platform, fees and customer support are provided by NinjaTrader.

In our review, we tested NinjaTrader's platform and brokerage services through an account opened with Phillip Capital. Phillip Capital is a global broker, regulated by top-tier financial authorities such as the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the UK's Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

You can also connect the following brokerage accounts to NinjaTrader platforms: Interactive Brokers, TD Ameritrade, Oanda, Forex.com, FXCM and City Index. The advantage of connecting these accounts is that you can trade other popular asset classes, like stocks, on NinjaTrader's great platform.

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#1 NinjaTrader
Fees

NinjaTrader charges low fees for trading futures.

We excluded exchange & NFA, order routing and clearing fees, as they are specific to given products and not to brokers. US stock index futures fees are for the Micro E-Mini contract, if available; otherwise, we used the E-mini contract in our trading scenario.

NinjaTrader futures fees
NinjaTrader Optimus Futures Interactive Brokers TradeStation AMP Futures
US micro e-mini stock index futures $3.5 $5.0 $2.5 $5.0 $0.9
German e-mini stock index futures $12.9 - $9.6 - $9.2
UK stock index futures $12.9 $5.0 $23.8 - $12.3
Withdrawal fee $40 $30 $0 $0 $30

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#1 NinjaTrader
Markets and products

At NinjaTrader, clients have access to 7 futures exchanges.
NinjaTrader markets and products
NinjaTrader Optimus Futures Interactive Brokers TradeStation AMP Futures
Futures markets (#) 7 10 32 11 10

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#1 NinjaTrader
Desktop trading platform
4.8

NinjaTrader's desktop platform is great for active traders: highly customizable with many advanced features. However, it might feel complicated at first, and also lacks a two-step login.
Pros Cons
Clear fee report No two-step (safer) login
Good customizability (for charts, workspace) Available only on Windows
Good variety of order types
Many great tools for technical analysis
Best futures brokers in 2022 - NinjaTrader trading platform

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Optimus Futures Logo

#2 Best futures brokers
Optimus Futures

4.0

Optimus Futures is a US-based company that provides numerous trading platforms (40+) with advanced research tools. The company was founded in 2005. It is regulated by the US National Futures Association (NFA).

Optimus Futures is an introducing broker of six futures commission merchants (FCMs), which are basically brokers providing futures trading services. The introducing broker status means that your assets and cash are held with the FCMs, but the platform, fees, and customer support are provided by Optimus Futures.

The six FCMs you can select when using Optimus Futures are the following: AMP, Ironbeam, ADM Investor, GAIN Capital (brand name of City Index and Forex.com), TradeStation and Wedbush.

We tested Optimus Futures's Optimus Flow trading platform and brokerage services through an account opened with AMP as an FCM provider. AMP is a global broker, regulated by the US Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the NFA.

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#2 Optimus Futures
Fees

Optimus Futures charges low fees for trading futures.

We excluded exchange & NFA, order routing and clearing fees, as they are specific to given products and not to brokers. US stock index futures fees are for the Micro E-Mini contract, if available; otherwise, we used the E-mini contract in our trading scenario.

Optimus Futures futures fees
NinjaTrader Optimus Futures Interactive Brokers TradeStation AMP Futures
US micro e-mini stock index futures $3.5 $5.0 $2.5 $5.0 $0.9
German e-mini stock index futures $12.9 - $9.6 - $9.2
UK stock index futures $12.9 $5.0 $23.8 - $12.3
Withdrawal fee $40 $30 $0 $0 $30

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#2 Optimus Futures
Markets and products

At Optimus Futures, clients have access to 10 futures exchanges.
Optimus Futures markets and products
NinjaTrader Optimus Futures Interactive Brokers TradeStation AMP Futures
Futures markets (#) 7 10 32 11 10

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#2 Optimus Futures
Desktop trading platform
3.8

Optimus Futures's desktop platform is highly customizable and has many advanced features to assit futures trading, but it might feel complicated at first and also lacks two-step login.
Pros Cons
Clear fee report No two-step (safer) login
Good customizability (for charts, workspace) Slightly complicated interface
Good variety of order types
Best futures brokers in 2022 - Optimus Futures trading platform

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Interactive Brokers Logo

#3 Best futures brokers
Interactive Brokers

4.9

Interactive Brokers, one of the biggest US-based discount brokers, was founded in 1977. The broker is regulated by several financial authorities globally, including top-tier ones like the UK's Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Given that the broker has licenses from multiple top-tier regulators, Interactive Brokers is considered safe. The fact that it has a long track record and publicly disclosed financials while being listed on a stock exchange all point to IB being a safe service provider.

Interactive Brokers recently launched a new app for global stock trading: read our review of IBKR GlobalTrader.

In addition, Interactive Brokers also has an app you can use for ESG investing: read our review of IMPACT by Interactive Brokers.

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#3 Interactive Brokers
Fees

Interactive Brokers charges low fees for trading futures.

We excluded exchange & NFA, order routing and clearing fees, as they are specific to given products and not to brokers. US stock index futures fees are for the Micro E-Mini contract, if available; otherwise, we used the E-mini contract in our trading scenario.

Interactive Brokers futures fees
NinjaTrader Optimus Futures Interactive Brokers TradeStation AMP Futures
US micro e-mini stock index futures $3.5 $5.0 $2.5 $5.0 $0.9
German e-mini stock index futures $12.9 - $9.6 - $9.2
UK stock index futures $12.9 $5.0 $23.8 - $12.3
Withdrawal fee $40 $30 $0 $0 $30

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#3 Interactive Brokers
Markets and products

At Interactive Brokers, clients have access to 32 futures exchanges.
Interactive Brokers markets and products
NinjaTrader Optimus Futures Interactive Brokers TradeStation AMP Futures
Futures markets (#) 7 10 32 11 10

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#3 Interactive Brokers
Desktop trading platform
3.8

IB's desktop platform, TWS comes with great customizability and advanced order execution, but it's not user-friendly and caters more to advanced traders.
Pros Cons
Clear fee report Not user-friendly
Good customizability (for charts, workspace) Complexity might be overwhelming
Good variety of order types
Best futures brokers in 2022 - Interactive Brokers trading platform

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TradeStation Logo

#4 Best futures brokers
TradeStation

4.5

TradeStation is a US stockbroker founded in 1982. It is regulated by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). Clients are eligible for up to $500,000 investor protection per account (including cash up to $250,000).

TradeStation is considered safe because it has a long track record; transparently discloses its financials; and its parent company, the Monex Group, is listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

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#4 TradeStation
Fees

TradeStation charges low fees for trading futures.

We excluded exchange & NFA, order routing and clearing fees, as they are specific to given products and not to brokers. US stock index futures fees are for the Micro E-Mini contract, if available; otherwise, we used the E-mini contract in our trading scenario.

TradeStation futures fees
NinjaTrader Optimus Futures Interactive Brokers TradeStation AMP Futures
US micro e-mini stock index futures $3.5 $5.0 $2.5 $5.0 $0.9
German e-mini stock index futures $12.9 - $9.6 - $9.2
UK stock index futures $12.9 $5.0 $23.8 - $12.3
Withdrawal fee $40 $30 $0 $0 $30

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#4 TradeStation
Markets and products

At TradeStation, clients have access to 11 futures exchanges.
TradeStation markets and products
NinjaTrader Optimus Futures Interactive Brokers TradeStation AMP Futures
Futures markets (#) 7 10 32 11 10

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#4 TradeStation
Desktop trading platform
2.8

TradeStation offers a desktop trading platform with many advanced features and customization options. For that reason, though, it is not very suitable for beginners.
Pros Cons
Good customizability (for charts, workspace) Not user-friendly
Good variety of order types Poor search function
Two-step (safer) login Poor design
Best futures brokers in 2022 - TradeStation trading platform

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AMP Futures Logo

#5 Best futures brokers
AMP Futures

4.2

AMP Futures is a US-based broker that provides more than 60 trading platforms for advanced users, particularly futures traders. The company was founded in 2009 and is regulated by the National Futures Association (NFA) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).

AMP has also a legal entity based in the EU called AMP Global (Europe), which provides CFD, forex and futures trading. In this review, we focus on the US-based entity and its services.

AMP Futures is considered safe because its financial information is publicly available and it is regulated by the CFTC, a top-tier financial authority.

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#5 AMP Futures
Fees

AMP Futures charges low fees for trading futures.

We excluded exchange & NFA, order routing and clearing fees, as they are specific to given products and not to brokers. US stock index futures fees are for the Micro E-Mini contract, if available; otherwise, we used the E-mini contract in our trading scenario.

AMP Futures futures fees
NinjaTrader Optimus Futures Interactive Brokers TradeStation AMP Futures
US micro e-mini stock index futures $3.5 $5.0 $2.5 $5.0 $0.9
German e-mini stock index futures $12.9 - $9.6 - $9.2
UK stock index futures $12.9 $5.0 $23.8 - $12.3
Withdrawal fee $40 $30 $0 $0 $30

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#5 AMP Futures
Markets and products

At AMP Futures, clients have access to 10 futures exchanges.
AMP Futures markets and products
NinjaTrader Optimus Futures Interactive Brokers TradeStation AMP Futures
Futures markets (#) 7 10 32 11 10

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#5 AMP Futures
Desktop trading platform
3.0

The AMP Futures desktop platform is highly customizable and has many advanced features to assit futures trading, but it might feel complicated at first and also lacks two-step login.
Pros Cons
Good customizability (for charts, workspace) No two-step (safer) login
Good variety of order types Complicated interface
Price alerts
Best futures brokers in 2022 - AMP Futures trading platform

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Best futures brokers in 2022
How did we pick the best brokers for futures?

We tested brokers based on close to 500 criteria. Below, we will show you the most important criteria we took into account.

The 5 most important criteria for best futures brokers
Futures fees We checked the fees for buying and selling stock index futures in the US (Micro E-Mini if available), the UK and Germany. We excluded exchange & NFA, order routing and clearing fees, as they are specific to given products and not to brokers.
Number of available futures markets We added up the number of futures exchanges the broker provides access to. For example, if the clients of a broker can trade on the EUREX and the CME, this would count as 2 (even though on the CME Exchange you can trade 4 different types of markets: equity indexes, interest rates, FX and agricultural futures).
Desktop trading platform score A user-friendly and well-equipped trading platform can significantly increase your trading comfort.
We looked at customizability as well as the availability of different order types, price alerts, and two-step authentication, among other features.
Research score Futures trading relies heavily on technical analysis, so it made sense to look at our 'Research' score for each broker, as this score covers charting capabilities.
Withdrawal fee Futures trading involves margin, so futures traders often execute more banking transactions than investors. While deposits are typically free at most brokers, there can be big differences among brokers when it comes to withdrawal fees.

Are these brokers reliable?

Absolutely. You can be sure that none of them is a scam. They are all regulated by at least one top-tier financial authority.

Even though talks have been ongoing for a while, currently there is no agency like the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) that provides investor protection for futures trading in the US. The FDIC protection does not cover investors who make speculative investments. Furthermore, futures are very highly-leveraged trading instruments. Offering FDIC insurance for all deposits involved in futures trading would ultimately increase transaction costs for the customer. This is because the participating FCMs (Futures Commission Merchants) would be required to pay the insurance.

All FCMs are required to report their daily segregation and secured requirements to their various regulators. Monthly FCM financial data is published by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

Best futures brokers in 2022
Bottom line

Now that we covered the details, let's zoom out. Here are the best futures brokers in 2022:

Best futures brokers in 2022
NinjaTrader Optimus Futures Interactive Brokers TradeStation AMP Futures
Futures fee class Low Low Low Low Low
US micro e-mini stock index futures $3.5 $5.0 $2.5 $5.0 $0.9
Futures markets (#) 7 10 32 11 10
Withdrawal fee $40 $30 $0 $0 $30
Visit broker Visit broker Visit broker Visit broker Visit broker

NinjaTrader is our winner, the best online broker for futures in 2022.

Still unsure? For a tailored recommendiation, check out our broker finder tool. Enter the name of your country and it will generate a list of the most relevant brokers. Want more details? Compare brokers with the help of this in-depth comparison table.

Author of this article

András Iván

Author of this article

Andras has over 5 years of experience in investing and trading equities, options and bonds. He believes that active trading and a more passive investing approach both have merits and everyone can find a strategy that fits their needs. He's eager to help identify the characteristics of specific brokers, so the best match can be found for each client.

András Iván

Broker Analyst

Andras has over 5 years of experience in investing and trading equities, options and bonds. He believes that active trading and a more passive investing approach both have merits and everyone can find a strategy that fits their needs. He's eager to help identify the characteristics of specific brokers, so the best match can be found for each client.

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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