Best Options Trading Platforms In Canada 2024: Top 11 Picks & Reviews

Bizreport - Bailey Schramm
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Reviewed by Kristina Knight, Journalist , BA
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Etoro

eToro

Best Overall

4.7 stars - votes

interactive broker

Interactive Brokers

Best for International Trading

4.5 stars - votes

TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade

Best Trading Simulation

4.3 stars - votes
trading (1)

Options trading gives investors a world of opportunities. Options trading involves setting parameters for buying or selling a security with an options contract that sets the timing and pricing of the “options†you’ll have for buying or selling the underlying investment. 

What is Options Trading?

Options trading involves trading within set parameters, or “options†that are in the future, set out in an options contract. Options contracts include information on which stock you can buy or sell for what period of time, and for what price. Options traders can buy or sell within these parameters, or choose to forego the “options†they’ve agreed upon.

What is an Options Trading Platform?

An options trading platform allows options traders to agree upon their options contracts and enact them. Not every trading platform allows for trading options, but some do offer this ability. Not every options trading platform was created equal, so we’ve rounded up a list of the best for you to choose from if you’re looking for brokers for options trading.

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trading (2)

eToro

We love eToro for their social opportunities for traders. They’ll plug you into a network of options traders to see trending trades and ideas and bounce ideas around to come up with the best trades to make a profit.

  • The mobile app makes options trading easier than ever
  • No commission or contract fees
  • Social feed to see trending options trades
  • Options rewards incentives, including 5$ free when you sign up
  • “Draft trading†simulation trading is available
  • No phone or chat support available for their most basic accounts

eToro continues to be one of the best platforms to buy Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Not only can you trade crypto, but you can also buy ETFs and other stocks as well. There is a low threshold to get started at $10, and the social investing aspect of the platform allows users to duplicate the trades made by the pros who have a successful track record. 

Interactive Brokers

Interactive Brokers has a great international trading market. Not all options brokers have this feature, so it really sets them apart.

  • Desktop, mobile, and web trading are available
  • Advanced options trading tools and analytics
  • 65 free online courses for trading educational content
  • Great international trading opportunities
  • Interactive Brokers’ clients tend to be more experienced traders
  • Commissions are charged for options contracts ($0.15-$0.65)

The education available for possible options strategies also sets Interactive Brokers apart. They offer low-cost options trading (not the lowest, but still competitive) and they have more advanced research tools for more professional traders. We will point out that their customers tend to be more advanced traders, and they do charge commissions on their contracts. Overall, it’s a great option and stock trading platform for more experienced options traders.

TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade is truly the best all-inclusive platform when it comes to trading options. We love that they offer so many possibilities and choices for active traders.

  • Free educational resources
  • paperMoney trading simulation to help newbies navigate the market
  • 24/7 chat and call support available
  • In-depth options analytics
  • No commissions
  • Tap into many markets with thousands of other investing possibilities
  • $0.65 per contract

In addition to their many offerings for investors, TD Ameritrade also boasts free educational courses, trading simulations, chat support, and options strategies to help hone your trading style. They offer almost free options trading ($0.65 per contract), and we love their array of options for experienced investors and newbies alike.

E*TRADE

Options traders are flocking to E*TRADE for their awesome new account perk. They offer $600 for new accounts when you meet a minimum qualifying balance.

  • Sign-on bonus of $600 with a qualified account minimum
  • Risk management tools
  • Customizable options dashboard
  • 4 levels of options trading available for advanced traders to beginners
  • $0.10-$1.50 for each options contract

Since there is a potentially unlimited risk with options trading, E*TRADE helps the trader manage their risk with analytical options tools. They have 4 levels of options trading access, depending on the trader’s experience and education. Their options trading does cost a very minimal fee, but each trader can customize their dashboard to view only the trading information they need at the time. Overall, E*TRADE has a system built for active options traders to help them succeed.

Robinhood

Robinhood

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We love Robinhood for their strategy education. They allow traders to build their options strategies to start to trade stocks with strategy. 

  • No contract fees
  • Strategy builder to help design your trading strategies
  • Save and monitor possible options trades to watch their performance
  • 24/7 phone and chat support
  • 3 levels to options trading for beginning options traders to more experienced options traders
  • No customizable advanced trading analytics offered

With no fees, a stock monitoring feature to avoid trading stocks you aren’t yet comfortable with, and 3 levels of trading clearance available for investors, Robinhood is the best trading platform for beginners to practice options trading. Their system is easy to use, and their customer support is readily available and highly rated.

Ally Invest

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We love that Ally Invest provides live market updates to their users, setting them apart from other options brokers. This feature helps you stay in the know when major events happen that might affect buying and selling options. 

  • Live market stats updates
  • Desktop and mobile access to their platform
  • No commission
  • No account minimum
  • $0.50 per contract
  • Some higher transfer fees for their accounts 
  • Educational resources are sub-par

On top of these live updates, Ally Invest also has no account minimums, they don’t charge any commission, and they have multiple avenues to access their platform. We will say that they do charge fees “per contract†and they don’t have the same robust educational content that some other options brokers provide.

Firstrade

firstrade

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Firstrade gives investors an inside look into what other active traders are buying and selling. Their look into trending trades helps you follow major movers and stay on top of the market.

  • No commissions or contract fees
  • Easy-to-use analytics
  • Free ongoing educational content
  • Get trending trade ideas for your options trades
  • Extended hours trading
  • Do not offer 24/7 customer service access

In addition to this cool feature, Firstrade has research tools, free educational content, and extended trading hours for their investors. However, don’t look to them for the opportunity for 24/7 customer support. They don’t currently offer this feature.

TradeStation

Tradestation

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TradeStation has many trade options and features that experienced investors look for in an options broker. They remain one of the best online brokers for advanced trades.

  • Commission-free options trading
  • Trading simulator offered
  • Options trading education offered
  • Best for advanced options traders
  • $0.60 per contract
  • Many features are a la carte

The features that set TradeStation apart include a trading simulator, extensive education for their users, no commissions, and low options contract pricing. However, there are some more complex features available to experienced traders at a higher price. Their free version provides the basics but not anything extra for trade analyses.

TradeZero

Tradezero

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TradeZero has zeroed in on US-based investments. Their specialty lies in domestic trades, and their options trading platform reflects this. 

  • Commission free trading
  • Advanced education for options traders
  • 24/7 customer support
  • High focus on US-based investments
  • Not as many investment opportunities as other options trading platforms
  • The free version has limited features
  • Credit and debit cards are not accepted as payment

If you’re looking for commission-free domestic options trading, this might be the platform for you. TradeZero also includes 24/7 customer support and extensive educational content for active traders. Since they do focus on the domestic market, TradeZero has less opportunity for investment diversification than many brokers. They also have limited features included in their free version. 

Tastytrade

tastytrade

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Tastytrade has the uncanny ability to equip options traders with the tools they need. We absolutely love their analysis features.

  • Curate a watchlist for your potential options
  • Easy liquidity tracking
  • Analyze your potential investments with their options tools
  • Desktop platform, browser, and mobile trading platform
  • Customizable dashboard to view only what you need
  • No market updates are available 
  • $1.00 per options trade

Included within these features are stock watchlists, liquidity tracking, a customizable dashboard, and an extensive desktop platform. We love that TastyTrade brings it all together for investors with their educational content and tools to practice options trading. We will point out that they don’t offer live market news updates, and options contracts each cost $1, which is on the expensive end of the spectrum.

Webull

Webull

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Webull offers its customers 12 free stocks with the opening of a new account, and this is a perk that not many brokers offer. We appreciate this sign-on perk that has users signing up left and right.

  • Commission-free options trading
  • No contract fee
  • Real-time market data
  • 12 free stocks when you open a new account
  • Intuitive interface
  • Educational options trading resources available
  • Not as many investment opportunities as other options trading platforms

Real-time market data, zero contract fees for options trading, and an intuitive interface are just a few of the features this platform offers for a seamless trading scenario. Webull also provides ongoing educational content and no commissions on any of your trades. They do have a more limited investment horizon for their traders (no mutual funds), so be aware of this before signing on to their services. 

How Much Money Do You Need to Trade Options?

To start your options trading journey, you’ll have to have some cash available. Since options trading relies so heavily on speculation, and the “option†to put in a trade at a certain future date, options traders should have at least a few hundred dollars in their investment accounts readily available to make a preferred trade. This amount of money will depend upon the stock price and the number of stock trades you’d like to make. 

Why Do You Need Options Trading Platforms?

In order to put in options trades, you have to have access to a platform that supports them. Not every trading platform is created equal, and some have more features than others. The best options trading platforms offer the ability to easily buy and sell options and to educate yourself on the best way to profit from options trading. 

How to Choose The Best Options Trading Platform In Canada?

In order to choose the platform that best suits your options trading needs, you’ll have to consider several key factors and features offered by each options trading platform. 

Price

Options trading brokers each offer their services at a different price. Sometimes completely free options trading is available, but this is not the norm. Several excellent options trading tools charge a membership fee, a contract fee, or a commission per options trade. We recommend checking out these three pricing factors before signing up for a new trading platform. 

Assets

The assets available on the trading platform you’re considering are a huge factor. Do you need a “one-stop shop†for all your trading needs? Not every options trading platform also offers mutual funds, Forex investing, and futures. We recommend making sure your new trading platform can house any investments you might want to make. 

Ease of Use Platform

Another factor when making your decision will be the learning curve when using the trading platform. Some are more beginner friendly than others, and some offer a robust desktop platform to view all your potential trades from a bird’s eye view. Most online brokers have multiple platforms (such as mobile and desktop), so check out each opportunity before you dive into a new options trading platform. 

Included Features

Features like a sign-on perk, educational content, and trading simulations offer high value to options traders. These types of features can help you make informed decisions when you put in your trades. 

Customer Support

Do the trading platforms you’re considering offer 24/7 phone and chat support? Some online brokers don’t include anything but email support, which can be cumbersome if you need assistance with a real-time trade.

Customer Reviews

As with any good or service, check the reviews! If customers leave glowing reviews about usability and customer support, this is a great sign. If multiple customers are having the same issues with an options broker, it might be best to stay away. 

Final Thoughts

When looking for the best options trading brokers, it’s important to consider the competition out there, weigh your options, and decide on the features that would assist you best as an options trader. If you’re new to options trading, a service offering free education could help you get your options trading career off to a great start. We put our stamp of approval on each of these 11 options brokers, but it’s up to you to make the ultimate decision of which one to go with for your options trading needs. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is a strike price?

A strike price is the stock price you agree to buy or sell your underlying stock for within your option contract. 

What is a “call†in options trading?

A call means that an investor has the opportunity to buy an underlying asset within a certain period of time. Investors typically buy call options when they believe that the asset’s price will rise in the future. This is an attempt to secure the investment at a lower price in the future even when the investment’s price is rising.

What is a “put†in options trading?

A put means that an investor has the opportunity to sell an underlying asset within a certain period of time. Investors typically buy put options when they believe that the asset’s price will fall in the future. This is an attempt to sell the investment at a higher price in the future even when the investment’s price is falling. 

What is an option?

An option is technically a contract that gives an investor the “option†to buy or sell a certain specified investment within a certain period of time, at a certain price.

Are options or stocks riskier?

Both investments entail their own risk, but with options, you have the opportunity to make an investment or forego an investment at a future date outlined in your contract. Therefore, options are generally considered less risky than stocks.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Bizreport - Bailey Schramm
Bailey Schramm, BS
Finance Advisor
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Bailey Schramm is a writer based out of Jackson Hole, WY, primarily covering topics and trends in financial services, business, and the blockchain. With a background covering stock market developments for a major FinTech company, she now provides SEO and content strategy services to financial service companies and tech startups.

ABOUT THE REVIEWER

Kristina Knight-1
Kristina Knight, Journalist , BA
Content Writer & Editor
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Kristina Knight is a freelance writer with more than 15 years of experience writing on varied topics. Kristina’s focus for the past 10 years has been the small business, online marketing, and banking sectors, however, she keeps things interesting by writing about her experiences as an adoptive mom, parenting, and education issues. Kristina’s work has appeared with BizReport.com, NBC News, Soaps.com, DisasterNewsNetwork, and many more publications.

+ 6 sources

Bizreport Advisor adheres to strict editorial integrity standards avoids using tertiary references. We have strict sourcing guidelines and rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic research. To ensure the accuracy of articles in Bizreport, you can read more about the editorial process here.

  1. SEC.gov | Options Trading. www.sec.gov. Accessed March 18, 2023. https://www.sec.gov/fast-answers/answersoptions
  2. Options | Investor.gov. www.investor.gov. Accessed March 18, 2023. https://www.investor.gov/introduction-investing/investing-basics/glossary/options
  3. Investor.gov. Stocks | Investor.gov. www.investor.gov. Published 2022. Accessed March 18, 2023. https://www.investor.gov/introduction-investing/investing-basics/investment-products/stocks
  4. Strengthening Practices for Preventing and Detecting Illegal Options Trading Used to Reset Reg SHO Close-out Obligations.; 2013. Accessed March 18, 2023. https://www.sec.gov/about/offices/ocie/options-trading-risk-alert.pdf
  5. Explore options trading on a simplified platform – eToro. etoro. Accessed March 18, 2023. https://www.etoro.com/en-us/options/
  6. Investment Products Options Trading | Interactive Brokers LLC. www.interactivebrokers.com. Accessed March 18, 2023. https://www.interactivebrokers.com/en/trading/products-options.php

     

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