About Trading 212

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About Trading 212

 

Trading 212 is a global CFD and forex broker, but clients can also trade stocks and ETFs free of charge. They are part of the not-so-new wave of commission-free discount brokers.

Despite being a newcomer in the sense that Trading 212 provides free ETF and stock trading on an easy-to-understand platform, the company itself has been around since 2004. Its headquarters are in London.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

  1. The company and its environment:
    History, Founders, Customer base, Criticism and controversies, Competitors

  2. Our analysis and guides on Trading 212:
    Trading 212 review 2022

  3. Legal background:
    Countries served, Legal entities, Regulation

Everything we consider important about Trading 212 is collected here. For a more in-depth explanation, please click the links at the end of each paragraph or see our assessment in the Trading 212 review for 2022.

 

History

 

Trading 212 was established in Bulgaria in 2004. First named Avus Capital, it was later incorporated in the UK in 2013. In 2017, it launched its commission-free CFD/forex, real stock and ETF services. Today, Trading 212 has around 1.5 million clients, $3.5 billion in client assets, and 1.5 million orders executed daily.

Trading 212 became popular especially after launching its commission-free CFD and Invest products. These are two separate trading platforms used for CFD/forex and securities trading. In Q1 2020, Trading 212 saw a massive surge of new clients, as traders sought alternatives for Revolut and eToro to get on the $GME and $AMC craze. Unfortunately, Trading 212 couldn’t process the number of new applications, therefore it decided to completely halt account openings in Q1 2020.

Trading 212 also saw massive platform outages at the end of January 2021 in connection with the market craze.

Up until the waiting list was finally lifted for EEA residents in Q4 2021, Trading 212 wasn’t available for new traders, which is considered an unusually long hiatus.

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Founders

 

Ivan Ashminov and Borislav Nedialkov founded Trading 212 in Bulgaria in 2004. Ashminov is co-founder and CEO of Trading 212. Nedialkov is co-founder and focuses on the forex branch of the company.

Other than this, there’s hardly any information on the founders' background.

Sources: Financial Times (1, 2), Trading 212’s About page

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Customer base

 

Trading 212 saw an increase in users from 50,000 to 1.5 million between 2018 and 2021. In just two years, it built a massive userbase thanks to its “zero commission” policy. These are only retail users, as businesses are not yet allowed to open an account at Trading 212.

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Criticism and controversies

 

According to industry sources, many suspect that Trading 212 is deliberately focusing on providing platforms for both securities and derivatives for cross-selling purposes.

After introducing the commission-free model, Trading 212’s pre-tax profits fell by 83% in 2017 to £1.3 million, and the company also reported rising marketing costs. Ashminov has admitted that other forms of capital generation have been considered (e.g. in a form of venture capital injections or going public).

Also, in 2021, Trading 212 deliberately halted the creation of new accounts for several quarters due to the sudden popularity of meme stocks. During the peak of the $GME craze, Trading 212 also had massive platform outages, which led to major criticism among retail investors.

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Competitors

 

Trading 212 is both a CFD and a stock trading platform, therefore it competes with services in both categories.

Trading 212 has the following competitors:

  • XTB, eToro, IG, Capital.com

More details are in our Trading 212 alternatives article.

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Trading 212 review

 

Trading 212 is a zero-commission stock- and CFD broker. We tested its services and wrote about the experience, putting down its performance scorecard based on our proprietary analysis database in our full Trading 212 review for 2022. It is a powerful and objective analysis, based on almost 500 data points. Check it out, it will help you crunch the numbers.

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Services offered

 

Trading 212’s main concept is the zero-fee brokerage for all. Not just for securities, but for derivatives and forex too.

It provides products such as CFDs (Commodity CFDs, Stock Index CFDs, ETF CFDs), forex, stocks, ETFs or indices on a single application platform.

 

Countries served

 

Trading 212 accepts clients globally, however, there are a few exceptions. Click here to explore the countries you can open an account from. Note that outside the EEA, account opening times can take much longer than usual.

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Legal entities

 

Trading 212 has multiple entities serving different customers based on their country of residence:

Client country

Investor protection amount

Regulator

Legal entity

UK

£85,000

Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)

Trading 212 UK Limited (UK)

EEA countries

90% of your funds, max €20,000

Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC)

Trading 212 Markets Ltd

All other countries

90% of your funds, max €20,000

Bulgarian Financial Supervision Commission (FSC)

Trading 212 Ltd

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Regulation

 

Trading 212 has three entities: Trading 212 UK Limited (UK), Trading 212 Markets Ltd, and Trading 212 Ltd.

Trading 212 UK Limited (UK) serves clients from the United Kingdom and Germany. These clients are protected by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) (Registration number 609146). Clients are protected up to £85,000.

Trading 212 Markets Ltd (Cyprus) serves clients from the rest of Europe. Clients under Trading 212 Markets Ltd are protected up to €20,000 and are protected by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (Register number 398/21).

Trading 212 Ltd serves clients globally. Clients under Trading 212 Ltd are protected by the Bulgarian Financial Supervision Commission (FSC) (Registration number RG-03-0237), and the protection is up to 90% of your funds, to a maximum of €20,000.

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Frequently asked questions

 

There are plenty of popular questions and topics out there about Trading 212. Head over here to see them all listed and answered by BrokerChooser.

Back to Trading 212 review for 2022

 

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Author of this article

Bence András Rózsa

Author of this article

Bence András Rózsa is an experienced broker analyst. Having an MSc in international economy and finance, he focuses on equities, cryptos and newcomer financial services. He also has 2+ years of experience within the brokerage industry specializing in stock- and CFD/forex brokers, crypto providers and robo-advisors.

Bence András Rózsa

Broker Analyst

Bence András Rózsa is an experienced broker analyst. Having an MSc in international economy and finance, he focuses on equities, cryptos and newcomer financial services. He also has 2+ years of experience within the brokerage industry specializing in stock- and CFD/forex brokers, crypto providers and robo-advisors.

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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