How to Buy Shares in the UK? Best Brokers Reviewed

Buying and selling shares and stocks can’t get easier than doing it with online brokers. Before you put your hard-earned money in stocks, learn the basics well. If you’ve passed that stage, you should choose the best online stock broker to buy shares in the UK and maximize your profits.
We have compiled a comprehensive guide for you to get things going on stock trading and to help you choose the best stock broker in the UK.

How to Buy Shares in the UK?

stock trader
Buying and selling shares is easier than you think. All you need is an online account with the best broker and your money transfer order to get things going. Trading through an online broker is the easiest way for you.
There are trading strategies and tools that you can learn to minimize your losses and workload. However, you’ll always need to put in the effort and time to learn the stock markets.
Here are a few tips for you if you want to buy shares in the UK.

Investing v Trading

Investing is a long-term strategy. It’s a buy-and-hold strategy rather than actively buying and selling the shares. Investors look for profits as capital gains through price appreciation in stocks. Dividends are other important sources of income but are not guaranteed.
Trading on the other hand is actively buying and selling sahres. Traders pick stocks at lower prices and sell them when prices go up. Sophisticated trading techniques involve buying and selling stocks with a fraction of the difference in prices.

Choosing an Online Broker

Your next step will be to choose an online broker to buy shares in the UK. You’ll need to pay commission, interest, account maintenance, and other non-trading fees to an online broker. Online brokers offer different features (more on that below).

Researching the Shares

You shouldn’t rely solely on a stock’s reputation. Research on a stock thoroughly before you put your bets on it. A step ahead, consult a professional if you can afford the advice.

Evaluate your Risk Tolerance

In the beginning, never invest more than your risk tolerance. It means to invest in stocks as much as you can afford to lose, in fact, lose it all.

Plan your First Stock Trading Strategy

Learn different types of trading orders. Market order, limit-loss, and stop-loss orders are the most commonly used ones. Always use a limit loss order to minimize your losses.

How to Choose the Best Broker in the UK

Online brokers offer different features and costs. Take your time to research different brokers. You should look to compare the trading platforms, commission, number of products and markets, research tools, and educational material available.
Some brokers will offer free account opening and zero commissions. Remember, their commissions are embedded in spreads. Also, you should look for an online broker that offers a trading platform familiar to you such as MT4 or MT5.

Top Online Brokers in the UK

The London Stock Exchange is the primary market where you’d search for shares and stocks. However, you can choose an online broker to find an ideal stock from around the world such as a US stock.
Several top online brokers offer services for UK customers. We’ve picked these top online brokers in the stock’s category for you.

IG Broker

IG is an established global broker since its inception in 1974. It offers competitive commissions, trading fees, conversion costs, and lower non-trading costs. Traders in the UK can choose stock trading as well as CFDs. You can also choose other trading products and markets with IG.
Here are a few key features to explore with IG.
  • It offers competitive trading Fees;
    • £0 on US shares, £3 on UK shares, and 0.1% on EU and Australian shares.
  • It offers zero custody fee for 3+ trades.
  • It does not charge any funds transfer fee over £100 with only 0.5% conversion costs.
  • It offers more than 17,000 stocks and financial instruments to choose from.
  • IG has a dedicated web trading platform, mobile apps, browser-based web app, MT4, and L2Dealer for its customers.
  • Along with stocks, customers can choose from a wide range of markets such as Forex, Indices, Futures, Options, ETFs, Bonds, and Commodities.
  • It offers comprehensive research, education, and trading tools.

Saxo Markets

Saxo Markets is another established online broker with over 25 years of history. UK traders can choose from 19,000 trading products along with 3,000 ETFs from 36 international stock markets around the world.
Saxo Markets has a built-in trading platform that comes with two variants and a lot of third-party trading tools. Traders can use the Saxo markets’ trading platform on web, mobile, or desktop applications easily.
Here are some key features on offer from Saxo Markets:
  • It offers a wide range of trading products including Stocks, Forex, Bonds, ETFs, Futures, Cryptocurrencies, and Commodities. A total of 19,000+ products and 36 markets.
  • It offers fairly competitive pricing if you want to buy shares in the UK.
    • Trading costs: UK stocks – 0.10% (min. £ 8), US stocks – $ 0.02 (min. $10).
  • Its trading platform Saxo TraderGo and Saxo TraderPro offer comprehensive fundamental and technical analysis tools.
  • It supports third-party trading tools such as MT4 for the convenience of traders.
  • It offers different account types for retail, professional, corporate, and premium traders with distinctive offers.

AJ Bell Youinvest

AJ Bell is a familiar name for UK traders and Investors. It has an established history since 1995 in the UK broker’s market. It is one of the leading discount brokers to buy shares in the UK. The advantage with AJ Bell is that traders can choose from a wide range of trading and investment products.
AJ Bell offers great investment opportunities with investment funds, retirement and pension investments, lifetime investments, trading, and even “investing for children” products.
Here are some key features of the AJ Bell Youinvest platform.
  • It offers a wide range of trading and investing products that offer something for every type of investor.
  • It offers competitive stock trading prices starting from £ 9.50 share dealing per trade and £ 2.50 annual custody charges.
    • It does not incur funds dealing or funds custody charges.
  • It offers a limited trading product range but a carefully curated one. It offers around 2,200 products in Stocks, ETFs, and Funds only. It covers 17 stock markets including NASDAQ, LSE, NYSE, etc.
  • Its trading platform comes with a browser and mobile versions only. However, the platform comes with an intuitive interface and easy-to-use tools.

Interactive Brokers

Interactive Brokers is an established online broker that offers comprehensive trading tools. It is ideally suited for professional traders requiring customization and a variety of trading tools. However, its low-cost trading structure and a choice of fixed and tiered commission fee options are ideal for individual traders as well.
Interactive Brokers offers a wide range of products and markets with competitive pricing. Its interest rates and non-trading costs are also on the lower side as compared to its competitors in the UK. It remains one of the top online brokers in the UK.
Here are some key features of the Interactive Brokers Platform.
  • It offers a wide range of trading products of 13,000+ instruments from 80 international markets.
  • Its trading platform comes with a comprehensive toolset and research features.
  • It offers many research and customization tools for professional traders.
  • It offers one of the lowest trading cost models in the online brokerage industry.
  • It offers a unique feature of fraction trading that enables traders to buy a fraction of a share/fund.

Summing up

We hope you’ve gained valuable information on getting started with stock trading in the UK. Remember, you’ll need to invest time as much as your money to learn stock trading. Choosing the right online stock broker to buy shares in the UK is a crucial decision for any trader.