Financial technology or fintech innovations have brought many improvements in the delivery of financial services to consumers and business organizations. The trading platforms of the new breed of investment brokers for one, have made opportunities for investing in the financial markets accessible online, as well as easier to process and manage.
Still, not all online trading platforms are alike as some have more advanced features that give investment brokers an edge over competitors. Although such advanced features are designed to improve the usability and functions of a trading platform, they also denote higher fees. if one is still at that stage of choosing an investment broker who will act as one’s intermediary in the financial markets, it’s important to have an understanding of the basic features of a broker’s trading platform .
Basic Features of an Online Trading Platform
Online brokers offer the use of a proprietary trading platform that financial market investors can use in opening, closing, monitoring and managing their trading positions. The trading platform is the means by which brokers deliver automated financial trading services in exchange for a stipulated fee.
Generally, basic platforms provide trading channels for different types of investment products like stocks, bonds, foreign currencies, commodities, and futures or options for financial derivatives. Some though are tailored to offer only specific markets such as crypto assets; or for CFDs (Contracts for Differences) on stocks, foreign currencies, cryptocurrencies or precious commodities.
The most basic features are the order entry screens, accounts for maintaining trading funds, tools for monitoring trades and investments, charting tools, real-time quotes, news feeds and educational or instructional research materials as aid for new traders. Some trading platforms include a demo trading platform as a way of helping new users learn how to use the features before they carry on with actual trade.
Nowadays, trading platforms include a mobile application as a basic feature to make the software accessible to smartphone users anywhere and any time.
Types of Trading Platforms
A trading platform can be categorized as a commercial platform for use of day traders and retail investors. It can also be a prop platform, developed and designed for large scale brokerages in tailor fit for a specific trading style along with its specific trading requirements. The latter type is best best for institutional investors who trade with large blocks of securities.
Choosing a platform though should take into consideration not only the fees, because lower costs could equate to fewer features as trade-offs. Yet advanced features depend on the level of expertise of a trader and on how such features help in their decision-making. The usability of other advanced features also depends on a trader’s investing style and preferred investment products, to which visualizations and real-time streaming is of great importance.
One platform that has been drawing attention today is Rakuten Trade, but since the trading platform is of foreign-origin, interested users ask “is Rakuten Trade safe?”.
A Quick Look at Rakuten Trader and Its Trading Platform
Rakuten Trade is actually a multi-awarded trading platform licensed by the Malaysian Securities Commission since 2017, to carry on with a restricted Capital Markets Services Licence. The reason why this platform is drawing serious attention from investors in other countries is because Rakuten Trade’s trading software enable user to trade in Malaysia’s financial markets.
At a minimal cost, foreign investors can invest and trade on Malaysian stocks, exchange traded funds (ETFs) or real estate investment trusts (REITs). After all, most financial advisors recommend investing in foreigna securities as a way of diversifying one’s investment portfolio.