Our comparison table of US futures brokers covers the key account features.
These include, tight pricing, financial security, regulation, range of markets, added value and reviews.
Trading and investing carries a high level or risk and losses can exceed your deposits. Featured brokers appear first.
Here are a few of the best Futures brokers in the US
- Interactive Brokers – Read IBKR reviews
- TradeStation – Read TradeStation reviews
- TD Ameritrade – Read TD Ameritrade reviews
- E*TRADE – Read E*Trade reviews
- Charles Schwab – Read Charles Schwab reviews
What are Futures and how do you trade them?
Before we look at some of the best US futures brokers around, let’s examine what futures actually are. Put simply, futures trading is a specific type of investment which involves a trader speculating on the price of a commodity moving either up or down in the future. The commodity itself can be anything from crude oil and steel to cotton and beyond. Traders use futures to try and make a profit, the ultimate aim being to buy the commodity for a low price before selling it on at a higher price. Hundreds of thousands of futures trades take place every day, and due to the speculative and time sensitive nature of futures trading, it’s rare for the investors to be physically holding the commodity.
Most popular futures contracts…
Buying and selling within the futures market revolves around the price of certain commodities. There are plenty of commodities to choose from, but ultimately the futures market is dominated by around a dozen of them. The most popular future in the US is crude oil followed by heating oil and sugar. RBOB Gasoline as well as gold and corn also feature highly amongst some of the most popular commodities. Throughout 2017, wheat, soybeans and copper were also highly traded commodities.
Where to trade futures in the US
For those thinking about investing there are plenty of US futures brokers to choose from. It is however, a highly changeable marketplace that requires the most up to date knowledge available. Making the right decision when it comes to a broker is vital so it’s important to seek out a US futures broker that has a high level of real-time data and quotes. You’ll also want to look out for brokers who do plenty of research based on technical indicators and screening tools.
It’s important to remember that futures investment is often riskier than most investment strategies because you’re essentially betting on the direction a market is likely to go, something that even the most professional and experienced analysts sometimes struggle to forecast. The futures market is difficult to crack simply because despite all the research you do and how confident you may feel about a particular investment, you could still lose plenty of money quickly.
Trading futures online…
In order to trade futures online, you’re going to want to find a reputable US futures broker. Some will have a minimum amount threshold, meaning you could need $5000 to start investing. If you do, then you can expect access to a wide selection of markets and with plenty of data on offer as well as customisable tools and trading options, giving you everything you need to turn a profit at your fingertips.
For those on more of a budget and who are perhaps new to trading, it may be worth considering one of the several brokers where there’s no minimum amount required. Also look out for brokers who provide a two-week demo for those who are new to US futures brokers and want to try out the service before making a commitment. It’s a good idea to keep an eye out for brokers that offer generous fees as well, with many prices starting from just $0.59 per contract, per side commission as well as no inactivity fees.