Friday, August 10, 2018

Is Webull a Good Robinhood Alternative?

Is Webull a Good Robinhood Alternative
While some people are fond of online broker Robinhood, which charges no sales commissions, other people are looking for an alternative to Robinhood. One contender is Webull, another commission-free stockbroker.  This article will chronicle my experince with Webull and offer you, my readers, a free share of stock.

I first found Robinhood alternative Webull when I was perusing Google Play for more apps for my phone and Webull was listed as a free online broker.  I hit Google to see what folks had to say about it, and found that it was an alternative to Robinhood if you were looking for a free online broker.  I also saw that you got a free share of stock for trying it, so I did.

Getting Started with Webull

I downloaded the app, and installed it on my phone.  Easy enough.  It came up with all sorts of graphs and with lists of American and Canadian stocks. The app uses English/Canadian spelling so I assumed it was from Canada but the website lists a Wall Street address in New York City.

Deposting Money with Webull

After poking around a bit I found out how to link my bank account, and doing so only took a few minutes.  Then it told me about the micro-deposits.  Of course, whatever.  A couple of days later my bank called--I guess not everyone makes a hobby of opening new brokerage accounts and writing about them.  They just wanted to make sure the microdeposits were legit, as I'd had some just last month with M1 Finance.

I then returned to the app, verified that the account was mine, and deposited $100.  Next, I claimed my free share of stock. Amazingly, it wasn't Amazon, or Alphabet or Google, but some $5.00 stock I'd never heard of (AMBEV--a Brazilian beverage distributor).  Still, free is free, and I didn't have to deposit money to get it, I just had to open the account.

Buying Stock with Webull

I had my eye on shares of  Iron Mountain  and so I pushed what I thought were the right buttons to buy it.  I got a message about site maintenance.  Ok, it was midnight Saturday night; if you are going to maintain a site, that's as good a time as any.

Monday morning I tried again and found out that my deposit hadn't made it there (no big surprise).  While Robinhood allows me to deposit money and immediately invest it, Webull wants the deposit to clear the bank first.

Today, Thursday,  my bank website said that the money had left my bank account, so I fired up Webull to see if they had it yet.  I had to dig for a while before I determined that I needed to push "Trade" to see if my money was there yet (nope). The money left my bank account on Tuesday August 7 and as of Friday August 10 at 12:36 p.m., it is not in my Webull account.  My take-away on that is that if I plan to invest via Webull, I either need to keep a cash balance in my account or I need to accept that Webull is not for making moves due to (perhaps temporary) market moves.

Information Available on Webull

I am not a financial expert; I don't know what half the information I read about companies really means.  I've learned more in the last few years and I'm still learning, but as I've said before, investing in individual stocks is a hobby for me.  Statistically speaking most people are likely to do better for a lot less work investing in index funds.  My behavior mirrors that belief because most of my assets are in index mutal funds.  Still, I like to play the stock market and I've accepted that this is a toy that can make money or lose it.

I say all of that because the one area where Webull clearly outshines Robinhood is information.  Here is a screenshot of what you see if you look up Apple:

and if you scroll down a bit you'll see
followed by

If you want numbers, Webull has numbers, numbers and more numbers, along with a variety of graphs--and that's just the "overview".  If you want to know what analysts think:
and there are several more screens of information.  Yes, if you are an information junkie, Webull may be just your thing.

Trading Stocks with Webull

I'll come back and update this article once my money clears the bank and is in my account.  

Is Webull a Good Robinhood Alternative?

It depends.  Both offer free stock trading and that's a good thing.  Robinhood makes it easier to invest money NOW but Webull offers more information.  

Have you tried a low-fee/no-fee online broker?  What are  your thoughts?

Disease Called Debt


  1. Thanks for the information. I do like how RH makes funds available immediately. However, another free stock would be nice. One question, does WeBull have a referral program like RH?

    1. Yes, they instituted it after I wrote the article.

  2. webull have crypto ? and i available for european citizen ?

  3. It also allows shorting and offers 4x margin intraday 2x overnight