How to start trading stocks online: for beginners

How to start trading stocks online: for beginners

This article will show you how to start trading stocks online with an online account like Revolut, or how to start trading stocks with a Robinhood account.

With the world turning its attention to Wallstreetbets, a Reddit forum encouraging members to invest in GameStop Stock (GME) in an attempt to force a short squeeze, many people who have never invested before are looking to invest. GameStop's stock has been incredibly volatile over the first few months of 2021. Even Elon Musk got involved tweeting "Gamestonk!!" with a link to the Wallstreetbets forum. This article isn't about how to research which stocks to invest in, or how to invest in stocks, and does not intend to give out trading advice. It will give you some basic concepts so you can start trading even if you are a beginner. For more detailed stock trading information it is recommended that you research investing in stocks and are fully aware of the financial implications of stock trading.

How to invest if you are a beginner?

This article will not cover everything needed to learn about online stock trading for beginners. If you want to read a comprehensive guide on starting to invest in the stock market, see the Money Saving Expert’s Guide on Investing for beginners. They break down investing into several important questions:

  • What is an investment?
  • How do stock markets work?
  • What kind of growth can I expect from investing?
  • Is investing right for me?
  • How much should I invest?
  • What is a share?
  • What is a fund?
  • How do I research what to invest in?

Ultimately only you can decide whether or not you want to take the risk and invest. You need to educate yourself so you are fully aware of the implications of investing. Research and choose an online broker that is suited to your needs. And finally, research stocks that you want to purchase.

For further reading, Nerdwallet also has a guide explaining how to begin trading.

How to trade stocks online with Revolut?

Revolut offers a Stock Trading feature with the Revolut app. You first need to have your own Revolut account, and proof of residence in the UK, or a permitted country. You will be asked your yearly income, and also your net worth. Revolut is not the broker itself, it places any trade orders with a third party broker (DriveWealth).

  • Download the Revolut App from the Google Play Store or from the App Store.
  • Create a Revolut Account on your mobile device - you will need to provide proof of ID, and proof of residence.
  • Sign up to a Revolut Trading Account, you will need to agree to the terms and conditions, read documents from DriveWealth and give your Tax Number.
  • Once your account has been accepted you can add funds to your Revolut Account Trading account. This is done through a transfer to your Revolut account.
  • Begin trading stocks on Revolut.

How to trade stocks online with Robinhood?

The Robinhood process is much the same as with Revolut.

  • Download the Robinhood App from the Google Play Store or from the App Store.
  • Submit an application in Robinhood Account on your mobile device or on the Robinhood website.
  • You will receive an email within one day confirming your application’s approval, or requesting more information.
  • Once you have sent the necessary information to open your account, you will be able to start uploading money to your account to begin trading.

There are other online brokers, see this article from The Balance which looks at the best stock trading apps.

This was written before Robinhood actively limited trading on GameStop stocks and others. A couple of alternative online brokers to Robinhood, are Webull and Fidelity.

What are advanced stock tracking tools?

The type of brokerage app mentioned above are very basic, and quite limited in terms of actual trading features. Try downloading the Webull desktop app. You will have access to a much more comprehensive system, with volume, VWAP, watch lists, screeners and paper trading options (to allow you to practice without risking anything).

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