Best Online Broker Germany – Top 5 Comparison – 2022 English Guide

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Are you thinking about investing your money and looking for the best online broker in Germany? If so, you are at the right place. In this article, you will find a comparison of the 5 best online brokers to use in Germany. You will also learn everything about online brokers, including their fees, tax implications in Germany, the types of financial products you can trade, factors to consider when choosing your online brokers, and more.

Moving to Germany or new in Germany? Check out our Resources Page for all the help you need!

A short comparison of the best online brokers in Germany

If you don’t have much time, here are the highlights of the 5 best online brokers in Germany: 

Capital.com: Super low cost. Free educational material. Available in English. Demo account and crypto investment possible.

Trade Republic: Very cheap and transparent pricing. Available in English. Crypto investment is possible. 

eToro: Best social trading platform Available in English. Demo account and crypto investment possible. Funding must be converted to USD.

Smartbroker: Trading at low fees with free ETF saving plans. Trade only via the website, no app available. Website in German only. 

Scalable Capital: Low fees for trading. Their app is available in English. Free educational material and events. Crypto investment is possible.

Keep on reading for more details about the best online broker in Germany. Scroll down for a detailed comparison table of the best brokers.


Please note that this article does not substitute any professional investment advice. You are responsible for your own risk if you decide to participate in any form of investment.

Why should you invest your money?

Low interest rate

There is no better time than investing your money now. The current interest rate is extremely low. Some German banks also start charging negative interest if you deposit a lot of money in the banks.

Interested in a free bank account? Check this out: Opening a Bank Account in Germany – Compare English Banking Options

Inflation is stealing your money silently 

Do you know that you are losing the purchasing power of your money over time because of inflation? Your 1,000 Euros today is not the same as your 1,000 Euros in 30 years. You can purchase less with the same amount of money in 30 years.

Read also: The Best Investment to Profit From Inflation in Germany

Don’t just rely on the public pension in Germany

It is not wise to just rely on public retirement insurance in Germany. You never know what will happen by the time when you retire. As you probably know, the retirement age to receive your public pension in Germany used to be 65. And now it will be gradually increased to 67 because of the aging population in Germany. If you will be retired years from now, nobody knows what will happen with the retirement age or how much pension amount you can receive per month by then.

Grow your wealth easily by trading

Investing in stocks and ETFs can be a good option for individual investors to grow their wealth when living in Germany. Nowadays, it is very easy to invest in stocks. You can trade easily online at home to create an extra income apart from your full-time job.

Besides stocks and ETFs, there are many more ways to invest your money in Germany. Make sure to check this out: Invest in Germany to Make Money – Expat Guide


I know there is so much information out there about the best online brokers in Germany which can be overwhelming. That’s why I created this guide with simple language to help you to find your best online broker in Germany now.

12 Factors to consider when picking the best online broker in Germany

When searching for the best online broker to trade in Germany, you should consider the below factors:

1. Fees

The fees can vary greatly among the best online brokers in Germany. It is very common for online brokers to charge a fee per order. If you are a frequent trader, these fees can add up quickly.  

Besides the fee per order, some other fees you should pay attention to are the regular management fees, inactivity fees, deposit and withdrawal fees, etc.

2. Safety

In order to trade in Germany, the best online broker does not necessarily need to be based in Germany. The important thing is that the online broker you choose should be regulated from a Tier 1 reputable country. 

If the online broker is based in Germany, it should be regulated by Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin). All the best online brokers in Germany stated in this article are regulated by authorities and are considered safe to use.

3. Minimal deposit

You can choose an online broker that doesn’t require a minimum deposit when you trade in Germany. Or, at least a very small minimum deposit requirement. This is especially important if you have a limited amount of capital.

4. Deposit and withdrawal

Some online brokers in Germany charge you when you deposit and withdraw funds. Some only allow you to transfer funds via bank transfer, while others let you fund your account with other payment methods like credit/ debit card or PayPal. The payment method doesn’t just affect the convenience level, but also how fast you can withdraw money from your account.

Read also: Free Credit Card in Germany – Top 6 For Travel and Cashback

5. Wide range of products

Not every online broker offers a wide range of financial products for your to trade in Germany. If you want to trade a specific product, e.g. Bitcoin, you should find an online broker that lets you trade cryptocurrencies.

6. Trading platform

Many online brokers nowadays let you trade in Germany via your laptop or with an app. The trading platform of the best online brokers in Germany should be user-friendly and intuitive. 

7. Demo account

Some of the best online brokers in Germany let you open a demo account first. You can play around with virtual money and practice your skills before you start trading for real with a live trading account.

8. Opening an account

All the best online brokers in Germany stated in this article have an easy and fast sign-up process. This allows you to start trading very soon once you sign up, sometimes with no paperwork needed.

9. Education material

Some of the best online brokers offer educational resources for traders in Germany. Some trading platforms include free resources like analysis, market research, risk-management tools, stock charts, and news feed. They are very useful and can help you to analyze the market before making your trade.

10. Customer service

Nothing is more annoying than waiting for days to get a reply when you need help from customer service. The best online brokers in Germany should have good customer service. Many online brokers nowadays even offer a live chat function on their website so that you can talk to someone instantly.

11. Language

Some online brokers in Germany have an English website or app for people who are not familiar with the German language. Some also provide customer services in English.

12. Good reputation

You want your money in good hands. Check the review of the online brokers before choosing one to trade in Germany. In general, it is also good to find an online broker that has a long tracking record (at least 2 years). This allows you to check if the online broker has run into any problems in the past. 

Best online broker Germany – Top 5 Comparison Table

Considering the above-mentioned factors, we have chosen the below as the 5 best online brokers for trading in Germany. Note that the data in the below table is accurate as of the date when this article is written and is subject to change any time in the future.

Note: The below table can be moved sideways depending on your screen.

  Capital.com Trade Republic eToro Smartbroker Scalable Capital
Established year 2016 2015 2007 2019 2014
Desktop trading platform
Mobile app trading Χ
Trading fees 0% for opening or closing trades 1 Euro per trade 0% on stocks Start from 0 Euro With the “Free Broker” plan: 0.99 EUR per trade for stock, and 0 EUR for ETF and saving plans
Withdrawal fees 0 0 5 USD 0 0
Inactivity fees 0 0 10 USD monthly after 12 months 0 0
Deposit fees 0 0 0 0 0
Management fees 0 0 0 0 0
Minimum deposit 20 Euros 0 50 USD for users in Germany 0 1 Euro
Funding method Bank transfer, credit/ debit card, etc. Bank transfer, credit/debit card, Apple/ Google pay Bank transfer, credit/ debit card, PayPal, etc. Bank transfer Bank transfer
English language Χ
Demo account Χ Χ Χ
Customer service Live chat, email, phone Only contact form Live chat, email Live chat, email, phone Live chat, email, phone
  More Info More Info More Info More Info More Info

1. Capital.com

Capital.com was founded in 2016 and has offices in Cyprus, Belarus, and London. It is a fintech company that offers CFDs and Forex CFDs on a huge range of assets. With Capital.com, you can trade stocks, indices, forex pairs, cryptocurrencies, commodities, and more.

Pros
  • 0% commission and tight spreads
  • Fast and easy sign-up
  • User-friendly web and mobile platform
  • Free educational material
  • Customer service is available via email, phone, and live chat
  • English language available
  • Demo account available
  • Crypto CFDs trading is possible
  • Stop-loss order and negative balance protection
Cons 
  • No price alerts on the web platform
  • Overnight fees on leveraged position
Should you choose Capital.com?

Capital.com is one of the best online brokers for people who live in Germany. You can trade equities from stock markets in many different countries. With Capital.com, you can hold your Euro currency, meaning that you do not need to convert the Euro currency to fund your account (savings on conversion fees!).

If you are interested in trading leveraged products, Capital.com can be very attractive. Even though Capital.com charges a small fee if you hold a leveraged position open overnight, the fee is extremely small compared to many other brokers. You can read here to learn about how the overnight fees work.

Another great thing about trading with Capital.com is that you can put a stop-loss order that allows you to sell the stock when it reaches a specific price. Capital.com also offers the standard negative balance protection to ensure that you cannot lose more than what you have deposited into your accounts.

All in all, Capital.com is an excellent choice as its trading platform is super easy to use and understand (even for beginners!). The trading cost is super low. Pricing is transparent with no hidden costs. The English language is available. With its learning material, it is a great place for both beginners and professional traders to study the market and learn how to trade. I highly recommend Capital.com if you are looking for an online broker to use in Germany.

Sign up with Capital.com now!

Best online  broker germany_top 5 comparison_my life in germany_hkwomanabroad_capital.com

Note that spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 78.79% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading spread bets and/or CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. Professional clients can lose more than they deposit. All trading involves risk. Risk Disclosure statement.

2. Trade Republic

Trade Republic is a German-based online broker which was founded in 2015. It is a mobile-only trading platform where one can trade stocks, ETFs, saving plans, derivatives, and crypto-assets. 

Trade republic is regulated by the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin). Even though it is a relatively young broker, it has grown quickly. One of the main selling points is its €1 lump sum fee per trade.

Pros
  • English language available 
  • Free saving plans for stocks and ETFs
  • Cheap and transparent pricing with only 1 Euro per trade
  • Fast and easy sign-up
  • No management, deposit, withdrawal, or inactivity fees
  • Different options to fund your account including debit/ credit card and Apple/ Google pay
  • You can trade cryptocurrencies
Cons
  • Customer support is only available via a contact form
  • No demo account is available
Should you choose Trade Republic?

Trade republic is one of the cheapest online brokers available in Germany. The pricing is simple with only 1 Euro per trade. I personally use Trade Republic for two years now and I am very happy with it. 

However, Trade Republic does not provide many financial insights or educational resources. You may want to find another broker if you are looking for a trading platform where you can get learning support or market analysis from experts.

All in all, Trade Republic is a great investment platform, especially for investors looking to trade at super low costs.

Sign up with Trade Republic now!

Best online  broker germany_top 5 comparison_my life in germany_hkwomanabroad_trade republic

3. eToro

eToro is a social trading and brokerage company that focuses on providing financial and copy trading services. It has registered offices in the UK, the US, Australia, and Cyprus.

The social trading platform is an interesting concept, especially for someone new to trading. If you are interested in stock trading but do not want to spend time analyzing the stock market, you can subscribe to other experienced traders and “copy” their trade transactions on eToro. In return, the experienced traders will get a commission when their actions are copied.

You can trade in eToro different stocks, indices, ETFs, currencies, commodities, and also crypto assets.

Pros
  • 0% commission on stock
  • Good for social trading
  • You can fund your account with PayPal, debit/ credit card
  • Demo account available for you to practice without real money
  • English language available
  • Fast and easy sign-up
  • Low minimum deposit
  • You can trade cryptocurrencies
Cons
  • Fees after 12 months of inactivity
  • $5 withdrawal fees
  • Currency conversion fees if you fund your account without USD
Should you choose eToro?

eToro is great for Forex or CFD trading. It is also good for those who like to trade cryptocurrencies. Besides, its social trading platform is great for new traders who can copy the transaction of other experienced traders.

The biggest drawback is that the eToro platform operates in USD. If you transfer your fund in Euro, a conversion fee will be charged to convert the funds to USD. For example, the conversion fee is 50 pips to convert from EUR to USD. If the USD/ EUR rate is 1.2, eToro will use the exchange rate of 1.2-0.005=1.195 instead.

Sign up with eToro now!

Note that CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 68% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work, and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. Crypto investing is highly volatile and not appropriate for all investors. Your capital is at risk. 

4. Smartbroker

Smartbroker is from Berlin and it is backed by a company called wallstreet:online capital AG, which was founded in 2019. Although Smartbroker is a fairly new broker on the market, it is supported by DAB BNP Paribas. It is also regulated and licensed by the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin).

With Smartbroker, you can easily trade stocks, bonds, funds, ETFs, certificates, and warrants (starting with 0 Euro per order!). You can trade on all German stock exchanges without any restrictions.

Pros
  • Free ETF saving plans
  • Trading at very low fees
  • A large number of tradable stocks and ETFs
  • Easy account opening process 
  • Customer service is available via email, phone, and live chat
Cons
  • Complex pricing structure: start with 0 Euro per order when you trade more than 500 Euros using the Gettex trading system. Otherwise, up to 4 Euros per order.
  • 0.5% deposit fee if your cash holdings exceed 15% of your total account value
  • No app available, trading only through the website.
  • The website is only in German
  • No demo account is available
  • Only bank transfer is possible to fund your account
Should you choose Smartbroker?

Smartbroker can be a good choice if you want to trade cheaply. It offers many free ETF saving plans, which is good for investors who want to save on fees. Besides, it has a big selection of different stocks/ETFs for you to choose from. 

However, the pricing structure is a bit complicated. For example, it is only free if you trade for more than 500 Euros using the Gettex trading system. Otherwise, you have to pay up to 4 Euros per trade, which is still relatively cheap compared to many other brokers in Germany.

Sign up with Smartbroker now!

smartbroker

5. Scalable Capital

Scalable Capital was founded in 2014 in Munich. It is regulated by the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin). Scalable Capital offers two types of services: Robo-adviser and online brokerage. 

Robo-adviser means that instead of a human fund manager, a computer algorithm is used to invest your money in ETF. For this article, we will focus on Scalable Capital’s online brokerage service.

Scalable Capital offers three different plans for the brokerage service. The cheapest plan is called “Free Broker’. With this plan, there are no monthly fees and you only need to pay 0.99 Euro per order for stock trading. Saving plans are also free under any of the three plans.

Pros
  • You can use English with the app
  • A large number of tradable stocks and ETFs
  • Only 0.99 Euro per order for stock trading under the “Free Broker” plan
  • Free saving plans
  • Fast and easy sign-up
  • No management, deposit, withdrawal, or inactivity fees
  • Customer service is available via email, phone, and live chat
  • Research area with charts and real-time prices
  • Crypto investment is possible
Cons
  • Only bank transfer is possible to fund your account
  • No demo account is available
Should you choose Scalable Capital?

Similar to Trade Republic, Scalable Capital allows you to trade with very low costs. This is excellent for beginners or long-term ETF investors. You can trade via your desktop or mobile with Scalable Capital.

Note that with Scalable Capital, you can only invest in crypto via ETPs and cannot buy the crypto coins themselves. ETP means exchange-traded product. It is a type of security that tracks the value development of cryptocurrencies. 

Sign up with Scalable Capital now!

Scalable capital

What products can you trade with these best online brokers in Germany?

The financial product you can trade depends on your online broker in Germany. Not every online broker lets you trade every financial product. Some brokers only allow you to trade at certain marketplaces. 

Below are the common types of financial products offered by online brokers in Germany:

Stocks

Companies sell shares in their business to raise money. These stocks can be bought or sold among investors through a stock exchange. A broker represents each investor and helps the investors to trade stocks in a stock exchange. That is why you need to open an account at an online broker to trade stocks in Germany.

ETFs

ETF means exchange-traded funds. These funds follow a particular stock market index. For example, if you invest in DAX ETF, your money will be invested in the 40 major German companies in the same proportion as the DAX index.

Note that you do not own the stock of these 40 companies directly. What you own is one “unit” of the DAX ETF. If the DAX index goes up, the value of your DAX ETF will go up as well because the ETF includes shares of the same companies as the DAX index. You can then sell your DAX ETF now at a higher price to earn a profit.

Note that ETF is a long-term investment, e.g. for retirement. However, you are free to buy and sell your ETF at any time. A good way to invest in ETF is to do it with a savings plan, where you invest a fixed amount monthly in your ETF. It is an easy and great way to increase your wealth in the long term.

Forex

Forex means foreign exchange. The currency exchange rate fluctuates every day. Traders can take advantage of the fluctuation to make a financial gain.

The forex market is very active. It runs 24 hours a day. Unlike the stock exchange, there is no central marketplace for foreign exchange. All transactions just happen via the computer networks between traders from different parts of the world.  

Currencies are important because they are needed to purchase goods and services internationally. Let’s say if you want to buy a US product in Germany. Either you or the German company you buy the US product from will have to pay in USD to get this product (convert Euros into USD). 

When you make a forex trade, you sell one currency and buy another one. For example, if 1 Euro = 1.2 USD now, you will have to pay 1000 Euros to get 1200 USD. Later on, if the exchange rate changes to 1 Euro = 1 USD, you can get 1200 Euros when you sell your 1200 USD. It means that you can make a profit of 200 EUR from the move of the exchange rate.

You can also use leverage when trading forex. For example, in the above trade, to buy 1200 USD, you can pay only 100 Euros and borrow 900 Euros from your online broker. It means that you can make a 200% gain in the end (pay 100 Euros and get 200 Euros profit).

Leverage can give you high gain but also high loss. In case the exchange rate is moving against your favor, not only that you will lose your whole 100 Euros investment, but you will also have to pay back the loan that you have borrowed from your online broker.

Futures

Futures contracts allow you to transact an asset at a predetermined future date and price. At this future date, the buyer and the seller must trade the asset at the pre-agreed price, no matter what the market price is.

You can use futures contracts to speculate on the price direction of an asset. If you predict that the price of a commodity will rise, you can do a buy trade (the “long” position). If the price of the commodity does rise at this future date, your future contract itself becomes more valuable, and you can sell the contract for more in the futures market. 

Similarly, you can do a sell trade (the “short” position) if you predict that the price is going to fall in the future. There is no physical delivery of the commodity in this case. You are just trying to make a profit by speculating the price movements.

Note that since futures use leverage, the gains and losses are amplified. It is risky because you can lose more than what you have put in.

Options

An option is a contract that gives the buyer the right to buy or sell an asset at a specific price on or before a certain date. Options are a little bit similar to futures. The key difference is that with futures contracts, you are required to buy or sell the commodity at a specific date. With an option, you have the RIGHT to buy or sell the asset. But there is no obligation to do so.

A “call option” is the right to buy. Let’s say you get a call option and you have the right to buy certain stocks at a specific price (strike price) before a certain date. If the market price of the stock rises above the strike price, you can exercise your option, buy the stock with the strike price, and immediately sell the stock at the higher market price. This will be your profit after deducting the premium that you have to pay for your options.

If the stock price falls, you do not have to exercise your option. In this case, you will lose the premium that you have paid to buy your option.

A call option gives you more leverage than buying the stock itself. You can earn a lot more money with a call option when the stock price rises. And if it drops, you will only lose the fixed premium amount.

Similarly, if you predict a fall in the stock price, you can buy a “put option”, which gives you the right to sell your stock at the strike price before the expiration day. If the stock price does fall in the future, you can exercise your put option. You can then make a profit from the difference between the current market price and the strike price.

Cryptocurrencies

There are two ways to invest in cryptocurrencies. You can buy cryptocurrencies and own them yourselves. Or you can trade on cryptocurrencies via CFD.

If you buy the cryptocurrencies yourselves, you will have to store the cryptocurrency tokens in your own digital wallet until you sell them later.

CFD means Contract for Difference. It is a derivative and it allows you to speculate on the price of cryptocurrencies without actually owning them. If you predict the price of the cryptocurrencies will go up, you can go long (buy). Likewise, you can go short (sell) if you predict the price will fall.

Note that CFD trading is a leveraged product. It means that you can pay just a small deposit to expose to a much larger sum of money in the trade. Leverage will amplify your profits or losses. It is highly risky, but also with a higher earning potential. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Read also: Best Crypto Exchange in Germany – Compare the Top 5

What fees do you have to pay when using online brokers?

Below are some common types of fees you may have to pay when using online brokers in Germany:

Maintenance fees – these are the monthly or yearly fees you pay to have your account running.

Fee per trade order – A minimum amount that you have to pay for each trade transaction. It can be a flat rate or a percentage of your order volume. There are usually minimum and maximum limits on this fee.

Other fees from online brokers – For example, there can be a high charge if you want to place your trade order per phone call, or by post

Fees charged by the stock exchange – When you place a trade order, the stock exchange involved will usually charge a fee as well. The amount charged is different depending on the stock exchange.

Read also: 20 Ideas to Make Money from Home – Anyone Can Do 

Are online brokers safe to use?

You should make sure the online broker you use is regulated by the authority. For example, if you are using a German online broker, it should be regulated by BaFin. All the online brokers listed in this article are considered safe as they are all regulated. 

Usually, your broker needs to put your fund in a segregated account and cannot use this money for their own operation. So, your fund should be safe, even if your broker goes bankrupt.

In case of fraud (your broker steals your money), you should still get a compensation fund from the authority where your broker is regulated. The amount of compensation has a limit though, depending on the authority. That’s why it is important to make sure your broker is regulated in the country.

Read also: 9 ways to earn money in Germany as a student

Tax implication when using online brokers in Germany

In Germany, all the capital gains are subjected to a 25% investment tax. This is a really high tax rate! The good news is that you have a tax allowance of 801 Euros per year on your capital income (1.602 Euros per couple).

Usually, your broker will send you a statement telling you the gain/ loss you made in the previous year. You can enter these numbers in your tax return in Germany. The tax return is quite complicated to do in Germany, especially if you don’t know the German language. I suggest using an English tax program to do it. Or, if you have extra money, hire a tax adviser. 

For more details, you can check this out: Tax Return in Germany – Guide for Expats

 

 

How to start trading in Germany using online brokers?

1. Choose your online broker

2. Open a securities account (Depot) at your online broker

You may need to answer some questions regarding your stock-market knowledge and trading experience. Depending on your answers, the online broker may exclude you from certain high-risk trading products.

3. Prove your identity

There are different ways to do that. Usually, you can do it digitally with Video-Ident via your laptop or mobile. This involves showing your face and your passport in front of your camera. 

Alternatively, you can also use Post-Ident. You will then have to go to the nearby post office with your passport to prove your identity.

4. Fund your securities account

You will need money in your account before you can start trading.

5. Start trading

Use your online broker to place your orders or choose an ETF savings plan.

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Disclaimer

Please be aware that this article is intended to provide you a brief overview of investing in Germany via online brokers. It does not substitute any professional investment advice. You are responsible for your own risk if you decide to participate in any form of investment. No investment can guarantee a profit. Every investment is associated with risks and can lead to a complete loss of your invested money.  

We will try to keep the offers from the online brokers in this article updated regularly. In case you see any outdated information, please let us know and we will update it accordingly. This blog is not a financial consultant by law and we do not accept any form of liability resulting from reading this article. For the latest information, please refer to the online brokers’ websites directly.

We cannot give you investment advice or financial services. If you need more details and specific advice on your personal situation, we would highly recommend you to consult a financial adviser and a tax adviser.


Do you use an online broker to trade in Germany? Which online broker do you think is the best to use in Germany? Leave a comment and share your experience below!

 

 

Moving to Germany or new in Germany? Check out our Resources Page for all the help you need!

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2 Replies to “Best Online Broker Germany – Top 5 Comparison – 2022 English Guide”

  1. Hi, have you heard about Degiro? It’s mostly used here in Germany and my friend’s recommended it to me.

    1. Yes. I used Degiro at the beginning as well because it was recommended to me by someone. But then I learned about Trade Republic later which is cheaper and better. So, I changed from Degiro to Trade Republic. For example, it costs a flat rate of 1 Euro per order with Trade Republic, where Degiro charge 2 Euro plus 0,018 % per stock order.

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