Best Futures Brokers

List of the Best Futures Brokers

Who are the best Futures brokers? 1. NinjaTrader. 2. Infinity Futures. 3. Tradeovate. These brokers have pros and cons for charting, fees, support, order entry, and execution. Futures trading allows you to trade even when the market is closed during regular hours. As a result, if you work full-time, you can trade Futures at night. Or even first thing in the morning before everything else is open.

Best Futures Brokers Breakdown

Several things should be considered when searching for the best futures brokers; every trader is different. Fortunately, every brokerage is different in some ways, too. So you are sure to find one that best matches your needs. It would be best to remember that your needs will change over time. Therefore, a brokerage’s qualities, services, and fees do as well.

Thus, the brokerage you choose today may differ from what you need a year from now or in 5 years. Therefore, it’s beneficial to look at the offerings of different brokers regularly and be willing to change as needed. 

The following categories will help you determine which brokerages fit your specific needs. Some will be more important than others.

This can help you quickly determine which service is best for you. We’ll even give you three great options. If you haven’t checked out our Futures trading course, then you should.

1. Infinity Futures

They’re an overall established broker providing good service to many customers. They have competitive data, infrastructure, software, trading costs, quick order filling, and intraday margin trades.

Customer service is available and helpful but may be different from the hand holder some want. We consider them one of the best Futures brokers out there.

2. Tradovate

Tradovate is a platform that provides other services as well. For example, they have a $250 minimum to open an account and a low cost for trading micro and mini futures.  

However, they require their traders to cover margins of futures following CMEG SPAN with a set consistent day margin price. They’re great for a new trader, allowing you broad access. 

If you’re in our trade rooms, you’ll see Signet is a huge fan of Tradovate. They’re one of the best Futures brokers, especially for him.

3. Ninjatrader

They offer both software and brokerage services for active traders with free and premium services. The NinjaTrader SIM platform is free to use and free or with a funded account for charting, market analysis, and live trading.

For $60/month or a $1099 lifetime, the premium service includes automated trading, backtesting, advanced orders, and analysis of trading activity (volume bars, order flow, market depth)

In our Futures Trading room, you’ll see Rose actively using them. It can help give you a better sense of one of the best Futures brokers.

NinjaTrader Futures Broker

Fees, Commissions and Services

We all want the best deal regarding the best Futures brokers. And this category is often the first deciding factor for a futures trader. There are four things to consider to help you decide what will be your lowest commissions and fees for their services broker:

  • How much do you have to invest? Depending on the brokerage, you may get lower fees and trades the more money you have with them. Or the more total dollars of trades you are doing per month. This is also something to consider over time as your portfolio grows. You may be better off switching.
  • How much trading you’ll be doing- The more trades you perform, the more fees you pay. For a high-frequency trader, look for a lower price/trade.
  • The type of trading you will do- different clearing firms have specialties in different futures markets. It matches your trading needs to the clearing firm’s core competencies best. Some firms specialize in flat-priced online futures trading. Others focus on broad access to all markets and futures. At the same time, others can get orders done in large sizes or illiquid markets. There are no firms that do everything or everything great. You’ll be better served if you can find a broker with multiple clearing relationships and provide info about them, their benefits, and their service.

Best Futures Brokers Support

  • How much support will you need? This category is broken up into a few subsets. So look for the best Futures brokers that offer these things.
  • Transactional or Relationship trader– If you need the basics to do trading, you are a transactional trader. If you’re in this group, you have your system to trade with and do research on your own. You’ll look for free or very low-cost trades. You are a relationship trader if you need more information, research, and a high level of support. The company for you will provide the support, resources(see reports below), and tools(see below) you need to be an effective trader.
  • Hours of support- Depending on the type of trading you do, you will determine which company is the right choice. Futures markets are open 23.5 hours per day. Your trading hours and style may require 24-hour support; the more layers, options, and response time for support, the better. Look for a brokerage service with a dedicated futures broker, a trading desk, and an overnight desk for after-hours trading if needed.
  • Futures Broker Support- Having a professional futures broker in your corner can greatly help when a high-stakes situation arises. Say you’re on the wrong side of a limit-up move. A support team can’t help. But an experienced futures broker who knows your account can synthetically get you out of the positions by the close when others may be locked out. This is just one of their benefits and not a small feat, which may be worth the extra expense someday.  

Both technical and fundamental traders need reports and their research to help with trading.  Having fundamental and technical analysis is useful along with news and report releases like the US Fed meeting numbers or employment data. The best Futures brokers offer this.

TradeStation ThinkorSwim Logo NinjaTrader Logo
DESCRIPTION Trade futures, futures options, and micro E-minis on an advanced platform suite. Tools that can help create, optimize, & automate any futures trading strategy. Advanced charting platform ThinkorSwim is a powerful platform for futures trading, and other investments. This feature-packed platform lets you monitor the markets, plan your strategy, and implement it in one convenient, easy-to-use, and integrated place The NinjaTrader trading platform delivers integrated multi-device trading using a powerful modern cloud-based technology designed for active futures traders and other trading styles

How Do I Choose a Futures Broker?

  1. Picking the Best Futures Brokers can be overwhelming, so look at these:
  2. Tools
  3. Reports
  4. Support
  5. Leverage
  6. Execution
  7. Commission fees

1. Best Futures Brokers Tools

Superior technology, live quotes, and charts, as well as direct market access, are vital.  Add to this trade and info stability, speed, and reliability.  Knowing what platform is best for you and your trading style and which one the broker performs best at is critical.   Remember, if they only offer you one platform, that will be their best, even if it is not that good.

2. Leverage

All brokers and clearing firms have the same overnight margin requirements set by the exchange. The difference comes with day trading margins. A weaker risk management structure means they can’t monitor day traders and run the risk of incurring debts. 

Some firms will offer a 50% discount for day trading to traders who do not have margin calls at the close and will also let them trade with a 50% day margin.

Some brokers offer special rates for the E-mini S&P, like $ 500-day margins, which are a double-edged sword. Leverage can boost returns quickly and wipe them out quickly. Good futures brokers will allow access to $500 margins, but if the trader abuses the privilege or is reckless with the margin rules, the clearing firm can raise the day margin. Transactional firms will let their clients trade regardless until they become a risk to the firms.

Regarding leverage, the more used, the greater the risk. Going from 50% reductions to 90% reductions grows risk exponentially. The CFTC has forced FOREX companies to reduce their leverage from 200:1 and even 400:1 to 10:1, as studies show that these leverage levels greatly increase complete wipeouts.

Ask a broker how risk is managed, how leverage is monitored, what maximum leverage is recommended, and what potential controls are needed to prevent the maximum leverage levels.

3. Execution

Some brokerages will offer one, a selection, or all of the following execution services; make sure your needs are covered:

  1. Self-directed online trading,
  2. Broker-assisted
  3. Options execution
  4. Third-party/newsletter
  5. Automated system or strategy
  6. Managed
Day Trading Course Options Trading Course Futures Trading Course
DESCRIPTION Learn how to read penny stock charts, premarket preparation, target buy and sell zones, scan for stocks to trade, and get ready for live day trading action
Learn how to buy and sell options, assignment options, implement vertical spreads, and the most popular strategies, and prepare for live options trading How to read futures charts, margin requirements, learn the COT report, indicators, and the most popular trading strategies, and prepare for live futures trading

Final Thoughts: Best Futures Brokers

Remember, when you pick the best Futures brokers for you, you’re looking for an overall value. Review the considerations above.

Please put them in order of importance and find a futures broker that fits your needs and provides the best value for your money.

You won’t find an ultra-low-cost and superior service broker. But you can find the balance that fits you. Good luck with all your trades.

Frequently Asked Questions

There are big futures brokers and small futures brokers. Popular big futures brokers are TD Ameritrade, Interactive Brokers, and TradeStation. Popular small futures brokers are NinjaTrader, Tradovate, and Infinity Futures.

Best platform to trade options on futures:

  • TD Ameritrade
  • TastyTrade
  • TradeStation
  • Interactive Brokers
  • e-Trade

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