Webull Review 2022: Pros and Cons
- Intermediate investors
- Active traders
- Options traders
Webull is a mobile-first trading platform known for free stock trading, free options trading and advanced tools for active investors.
The company’s well-designed mobile app makes it easy to buy and sell stocks, ETFs and cryptocurrency. Webull doesn’t require an account minimum to get started, and its simple interface makes day trading accessible to both new and experienced investors alike.
Launched in 2017, Webull quickly positioned itself as a direct competitor of Robinhood, another platform popular with millennial traders.
However, Webull tends to attract more active and more advanced investors than its rival, according to a December 2021 CNBC interview with Webull CEO Anthony Denier.
Webull offers a few more features than Robinhood, including individual retirement accounts (IRAs), paper trading and advanced charting options.
Webull is best for active traders comfortable placing their own stock and ETF trades.
While the Webull platform features a thriving user community, its traditional education resources are slim. It also lacks access to some common securities, like bonds and mutual funds.
Beginning investors in search of personalized guidance or a passive investment strategy should look elsewhere.
Features of Webull
Webull is most appealing for its advanced features, including margin accounts and options trading. In fact, Webull is one of the few online brokers to offer free options trades with no commissions or contract fees.
Other key features include real-time market quotes, full extended-hours trading and commission-free crypto trading.
With 19 million active users in October 2021 Robinhood still boasts more traders than Webull — but this investing newcomer is gaining ground. In December 2021, Webull’s CEO reported 7 million active users — up from 2 million just a year earlier.
Curious if Webull is right for you? Our Webull review breaks down everything you need to know.
Webull Review: Services and Features
|Account management fee||None||$75 transfer-out fee|
|Account types||Taxable brokerage acct.||Roth IRA, trad. IRA|
|Investment types||Stocks, ETFs||Options, crypto|
|Options trades||No commissions||No contract fees|
|Educational resources||Limited resources||Add more over time|
|Advanced trading tools||Mix of trading tools||Market data; screeners|
|Access to human advisors||No||n/a|
|Bank account/cash management account||None||n/a|
|Customer service||Email only||1-888-828-0618|
Cost of Services
Webull’s low cost is one of its strongest features.
There’s no account minimum, inactivity fees, annual advisory fee or monthly subscription cost.
There’s no commission on stock or ETF trading either.
However, some very small fees are still applied by certain regulatory agencies — including the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). These fees are tiny, amounting to less than $0.05 for certain stock, ETF and options transactions.
Webull customers get access to commission-free cryptocurrency trading, although a 1% fee is baked into the price of any crypto trade made on the platform.
Webull provides access to three types of investment accounts:
- Taxable brokerage accounts
- Roth IRAs
- Traditional IRAs.
It also accepts IRA rollovers.
Webull doesn’t offer a cash management account like some of its competitors. Unlike Robinhood, Webull users do not earn interest on uninvested cash.
You can choose what type of Webull brokerage account you want: a cash account or a margin account.
Margin brokerage accounts let you borrow money against your investments. As the buyer, you pay part of the purchase price and the online broker lends you the difference.
A Webull margin account gives you up to 4x day trading buying power and up to 2x overnight buying power. So, if your account value is $5,000, you can use up to $20,000 to day trade, and hold up to $10,000 in positions overnight.
You need at least $2,000 to open a margin trading account.
Margin trading is a risky endeavor because you can lose much more than you invested. It’s best reserved for professional money managers and very experienced investors.
Webull charges margin accounts interest for leveraged positions held overnight. Those interest rates range from 3.99% to 6.99% and are based on the amount of money you borrow.
Webull gives users a somewhat limited selection of tradeable asset types.
Users can access the following types of investments:
- Exchange traded funds (ETFs)
Compared to other online brokers, Webull lacks several key investment types, including mutual funds, international equities and futures. You can’t purchase bonds, Treasury notes, T-Bills or any other fixed-income securities on the platform either.
You’re required to fill out an application to gauge risk tolerance and investment experience before you can buy and sell crypto or take part in options trading.
Webull makes trading stocks easy, and users have thousands of U.S.-listed stocks to choose from. However, the platform doesn’t currently support stock trading on foregin exchanges.
A few noteworthy stock trading features on Webull:
- Extended hours trading
- Fractional share trading
- Free stocks for new users
Webull offers extended hours trading, which makes it possible to trade stocks and ETFs outside the typical New York Stock Exchange business hours of 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. ET.
Extended hours let active traders buy and sell as early as 4 a.m. or as late as 8 p.m. ET.
In July 2021, Webull gave users the ability to trade fractional shares of stocks and ETFs. You need at least $5 to purchase fractional shares.
Like its rival Robinhood, Webull also gives new users free stocks when they sign up. The company typically offers at least two free stocks to new members, but may offer more during special promotions.
Options traders will be hard-pressed to find a better platform for free trades. Webull doesn’t charge a per-trade commission or a per-contract fee for options.
An option is a contract giving the buyer the right to buy or sell an underlying asset at a specific price on or before a certain date.
Users also get access to real-time options data and free index data.
Webull supports up to Level 3 multi-leg options trading strategies with plans to support Level 4 and Level 5 options trades in the future.
Webull is one of the few online brokers that supports cryptocurrency trading (Robinhood and SoFi are the other big names).
Webull users get access to 21 different cryptocurrencies, including:
- Bitcoin Cash
- Shiba Inu
The trading platform says it plans to add more cryptocurrencies.
While Webull advertises commission-free trading, it does apply a price markup of 100 basis points or 1% on either side of a crypto trade.
Webull users can’t send or receive crypto from their Webull account. If you want to make a withdrawal, you must sell your crypto for USD coin first.
Webull gives users a few ways to view and access their accounts.
- Mobile app
- Web-based platform
- Downloadable desktop platform
The Webull desktop trading platform and web version are nearly identical. Both offer highly customizable interfaces with drag-and-drop widget boxes. However, the desktop version includes a bit more flexibility and customization.
The mobile app offers the same primary features as the web and desktop versions but with some slight design differences to accommodate smaller screens.
Each Webull trading platform incorporates a sleek, simplified design that makes it easy to trade stocks and other securities on the go.
Trading Tools and Educational Resources
Webull offers advanced trading tools sufficient for most casual traders. However, its stripped down, minimalist approach excludes more sophisticated tools offered by other brokers.
Likewise, Webull’s educational resources leave much to be desired.
Stock Research and Trading Tools
Webull offers screeners, analyst ratings, price targets, technical analysis and fundamental information on companies to aid stock and ETF traders.
Webull provides 20 charting tools, drawing tools, a stock chart time-lapse video replay feature and 50 technical indicators.
You can also save a customized search and convert it to a watchlist.
However, the trading platform lacks some of the technical tools offered by more sophisticated trading platforms, including daily market reports, individual analyst reports and in-depth portfolio analysis tools.
Webull gives users two tiers of market data. Everyone gets access to Level 1 trading data. Level 2 market data offers better insight on the availability or demand for a stock at a certain price, and new users get access to this advanced data free for three months.
After that, Level 2 data access costs $1.99 a month.
Webull lacks in-depth educational resources for new investors.
Newcomers in search of detailed articles, educational videos, interactive courses and webinars will be hard pressed to find them on Webull.
Likewise, Webull doesn’t offer financial calculators or similar tools. It’s learning center focuses more on how to use Webull’s platform and features than on investing fundamentals.
However, the company seems to be taking active steps to improve educational offerings.
In February 2021, Webull partnered with Ticker Tocker, a trading education platform, to provide a collection of eBooks and instructional material to Webull users.
The first collection, Trading 101, focuses on topics like the basics of stock ownership, different order types and managing risk.
A useful source of information for new investors is Webull’s online community, which functions like a Twitter feed.
Traders can comment on stock news and post reactions to price changes. You can also create your own posts to get input and suggestions from other stock traders.
Getting advice from anonymous users isn’t the same as guidance from professional financial advisors, but it’s still a way to get feedback on investment decisions.
Paper Trading Account
Webull’s paper trading feature is designed to help investors get familiar with the platform and basic order entry.
Paper trading is just simulated trading: Investors create fake portfolios without using real money. It’s a safe way to play the stock market without any risk.
You can also enter paper trading competitions on Webull, where users create simulated portfolios for a chance to win real money.
Webull’s paper account has some limits. For example, you can’t simulate options trading.
What Webull Doesn’t Offer
Webull takes a slimmed down approach to online trading. Simplicity is nice, but its minimalist approach excludes some key features and securities found on other trading platforms.
Here are some of the main things Webull doesn’t offer:
- Mutual funds and bonds
- A robo-advisor or passive investing option
- Over-the-counter stocks (penny stocks)
- Access to human financial advisors
- Dividend reinvestment
- Tax-loss harvesting
- Automatic portfolio rebalancing
- Cash management accounts
Pros and Cons About Webull
Like all investment apps, Webull has its advantages and drawbacks. It’s important to consider both the pros and cons before opening a Webull account.
- No minimum deposit or annual fees
- Commission-free trading on U.S.-listed stocks, ETFs and options
- Easy-to-use mobile app
- Two free stocks for new account holders
- Access to both traditional and Roth IRAs
- Cryptocurrency trading
- Extended hours trading
- No mutual funds, bonds, fixed income securities, futures or foreign exchange trading
- No automated investing options
- Very limited educational resources
- Fewer research and analysis tools than other major brokerages
- No joint brokerage accounts or education savings accounts
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Webull
We’ve got the answers to some of the most popular questions about Webull, the mobile-first trading platform.
Webull is one of the newer mobile app trading platforms, debuting in 2017. But don’t let its youth fool you — the company is required to meet the same safety and regulatory standards as other brokers. Webull Financial LLC is a member of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC), so you’re protected for up to $500,000 if Webull shuts down or goes bankrupt. Webull also employs security features like two-factor authentication, 128-bit encryption and firewalls to keep info safe.
These two investment apps are so similar, one isn’t really better than the other.
In fact, here are all the things Webull and Robinhood have in common:
Rachel Christian is a Certified Educator in Personal Finance and a senior writer for The Penny Hoarder.