Zacks Trade safety

Whether a financial provider like Zacks Trade is safe and legit is an important and very legitimate question one can have. After all you trust Zacks Trade with your investment money and savings. It is also a very common question, we get this asked a number of times.

One thing worth bearing in mind: all the brokers that you find on BrokerChooser are regulated by at least one top-tier authority. So in this basic sense Zacks Trade is of course legit. Additionally, there are other factors you can take into account when you check the safety of Zacks Trade, e.g. if Zacks Trade is listed on any exchange, provide two-step login, disclose transparently its financial result, etc.

Here, we've collected and summarized the common questions on broker safety, enabling you to decide for yourself whether you consider Zacks Trade safe in your individual circumstances. We also compared Zacks Trade with two similar brokers.

Is Zacks Trade legit?
Zacks Trade ChoiceTrade TradeStation
Banking background No No No
Broker listed on stock exchange No No No
Annual financial statements on website No Yes Yes
Mobile two-step authentication Yes No Yes
Broker ownership transparency Yes Yes Yes
Broker management transparency Yes Yes Yes
Broker is audited by the Big Four No No Yes

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Zacks Trade safety
Things always worth considering

When you assess a stock broker it's best to think through the following aspects:

  • What authority or authorities regulate the broker? In other words who can you turn to if something goes south?
  • How much protection do you have?
  • For how long Zacks Trade has been in operation?
  • Is it publicly traded itself?
  • How transparent is it?
  • How much do they protect your account from unauthorized access?
  • What auditor audits the brokerage?

As you see there are a number of aspects above. But not all of them were created equal.

We think the most important feature is to be regulated by at least one trustworthy authority.

Comparing regulators

First and foremost, to gather a wider knowledge about one broker's safety, you should check the regulators of it. For this purpose, we sum up below the most important things to know about regulators and how to interpret them for your individual case.

Zacks Trade is regulated in the following countries and provide the following investor protection:

Zacks Trade regulation and investor protection
Zacks Trade
Country of regulation: USA
Investor protection amount: $500,000 ($250,000 cash limit) plus $30 million (with a cash sub-limit of $900,000) subject to an aggregate limit of $150 million.

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Don't forget that regulators are not created equal. Investor protection can also vary from authority to authority. There are top-tier regulators whose excellence lies within their features such as the presence of segregated accounts, the range of protection tools or the investor protection amount itself. Check out a few of the top-tiers in the table below. Most brokers reviewed by BC fall below one of the following four regulators:

Some regulators and their investor protection
FCA in the UK Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) covers £85,000 of each account's deposits.
SEC, FINRA in the US Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) covers up to $500,000, including a $250,000 limit for cash.
BaFIN in Germany €100,000 for cash, and €20,000 for securities.
ASIC in Australia No investor protection.

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As you could see, Zacks Trade is regulated by SEC and provides the SIPC investor protection scheme. SIPC protects against the loss of cash and securities in case the broker goes bust. The limit of SIPC protection is $500,000, which includes a $250,000 limit for cash. A non-US citizen with Zacks Trade is treated by the SIPC the same as a US resident in case something goes bad. These amounts are substantially higher than what most European investor protection schemes offer.

Not all investments are protected by SIPC. In general, SIPC covers notes, stocks, bonds, mutual funds and other investment company shares, and other registered securities. It does not cover instruments such as unregistered investment contracts, unregistered limited partnerships, fixed annuity contracts, currency, and interests in gold, silver, or other commodity futures contracts or commodity options.

There are some brokers that provide additional insurance because they have private insurance (e.g.: eToro through Lloyd's, among the US brokers Charles Schwab and Ally have similar setups), which means that you have an extra safety net above the regulatory. It's worth checking it out when you're choosing your broker.

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Zacks Trade safety
Additional "nice to have" safety features

The subsequent bullet points are rather supplementary, “nice to have” features. Ticking them definitely adds to the safety and legitimacy of an online broker, but not having them is not necessarily a big red flag.

Banking background

Zacks Trade doesn't have a banking background, which is not crucial, but would mean another guarantee for safety. The reason is that even if it's not required by law that a struggling broker must be saved by its parent bank, in most cases you can count on this happening.

Broker listed on stock exchange

Zacks Trade is not listed on any stock exchange, hence it's harder to get detailed or any kind of direct information about its financial performance.

Why is being listed on the stock market useful? For two reasons:

  • Listed companies by and large have stringent reporting requirements
  • If something really goes wrong with the broker, you'll be able to tell it from the (rapidly falling) share price of the broker in most cases. In this unlikely scenario, you'll have time to move your funds and securities to another broker.

Annual financial statements on website

Zacks Trade doesn't publish annual financial statements. These are sort of financial reports, which generally contain information about a brokerage's income, profit and loss, retained earnings and cash flows. Not having these exposed to the public doesn't necessarily mean that a broker is not safe or legit, it's just a factor that we should take into account when choosing where to invest or trade.

Mobile two-step authentication

Zacks Trade provides two-step authentication when logging in, which makes the platform safer to use.

Broker ownership transparency

Ownership structure of Zacks Trade is public, everyone can check the owners of the company on their website, which adds to their safety scores.

Broker management transparency

Zacks Trade is transparent about their management structure, which means that anyone can see who is in charge of management issues at the brokerage.

Broker is audited by the Big Four

Zacks Trade is not audited by one of the so-called Big Four auditors (KPMG, PWC, Deloitte, EY), which is not necessarily an issue, however it would guarantee another layer of safety.

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Zacks Trade safety
Bottomline

Now that we have gone through the most frequent and - as we think - most important safety aspects of Zacks Trade, we hope that you feel armed enough with information for your future decision. In case you're still unsure, use our broker finder and meet the best online broker that suits your needs.

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Author of this article

Nicole Conrad

Author of this article

Nicole is an intern content contributor for Brokerchooser. She comes to Brokerchooser with experience and certification in Accounting, and she currently is pursuing graduate studies in Economic Policy. Nicole writes broker reviews to provide transparency for customers: highlighting brokers’ exceptional services and holding them accountable for questionable practices.

Nicole Conrad

Broker Analyst

Nicole is an intern content contributor for Brokerchooser. She comes to Brokerchooser with experience and certification in Accounting, and she currently is pursuing graduate studies in Economic Policy. Nicole writes broker reviews to provide transparency for customers: highlighting brokers’ exceptional services and holding them accountable for questionable practices.

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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