Tastyworks vs Interactive Brokers


2023: Interactive Brokers IBKR versus Tastyworks: compare brokerage fees, options/futures tools/charts/accounts, & stock trading platforms. Which company is better?


Interactive Brokers vs. tastyworks Introduction


Two brokerage firms that have long lists of tradable assets and investment services are tastyworks and Interactive Brokers. Before opening an account with either company, be sure to read over our research.


Cost


Broker Fees Stock/ETF
Commission
Mutual Fund
Commission
Options
Commission
Maintenance
Fee
Annual IRA
Fee
IB $0 $14.95 $0.70 per contract $0 $30
Tastyworks $0 na $0.50 per contract $0 $0


Services


Broker Review Cost Investment Products Trading Tools Customer Service Research Overall Rating
IB
Tastyworks


Promotions


tastyworks: $0 commissions + $75 for each friend referred with this referral code.

Interactive Brokers: Use this referral link to get up to $1,000 of IBKR stock for free!



First Category: Accounts and Assets


There are self-directed accounts at both brokerage houses in this survey. Neither firm has managed accounts, although Interactive Brokers does offer accounts for professional money managers.

For self-directed traders, tastyworks has joint, individual, retirement, business, and trust accounts. Interactive Brokers has a similar lineup for retail customers and offers even more for institutional customers.

Institutional and retail clients both get a very large assortment of assets to trade at Interactive Brokers. Here is the company’s lengthy list:

  • Precious metals
  • Warrants
  • Structured products
  • Cryptocurrencies
  • Options
  • Stocks
  • Exchange-traded funds
  • Mutual funds
  • Closed-end funds
  • Futures
  • Options on futures
  • Forex
  • Bonds and bond equivalents

Because Interactive Brokers offers many foreign exchanges, the above list covers exchanges across several countries, which results in a very large number of total assets available for trading.

tastyworks only offers the U.S. exchanges, which shrinks its list quite a bit. Moreover, several products on IB’s list aren’t available at tastyworks. These include forex, mutual funds, bonds, precious metals, structure products, and warrants.

Non-Americans can open accounts with both tastyworks and Interactive Brokers.

Winner: Interactive Brokers


Second Category: Mobile Apps


When it comes time to place a trade, a useful mobile app will be found at either brokerage firm in this rivalry. The Interactive Brokers app has option chains for calls and puts plus 3 spreads. There are two display modes (new and legacy) for searching through contracts. We found them both easy to use.


Interactive Brokers vs tastyworks


Charts are well done with a horizontal mode, multiple plot styles, technical studies, and plenty of customization features. The regular order ticket has 10 trade types and 3 duration choices. Then there’s a wheel order-entry system that offers even more sophistication.

tasty’s app has 9 pre-installed option strategies. It’s pretty easy to scan through chains and pick something to trade. The order ticket has 4 order types and 4 duration choices. Charts can be displayed horizontally, but there are no tools, and there is only one plot style (candlestick).


tastyworks or Interactive Brokers


Winner: Interactive Brokers


Third Category: Website Trading


Besides powerful mobile apps, both broker-dealers have good websites. tasty’s has a really unique trade ticket that has a curve mode. It is especially useful for trading options because contracts can be dragged along a strike-price axis to adjust values. The graphical interface also has profit-loss visualizations.


tastyworks vs IBKR


The third tab on the trade ticket is a table tab. This shows contracts in standard call-put chains. Clicking on a bid or ask price adds the contract to the trade ticket. This setup would be good for non-visual learners.

Where tasty’s website falls short is in the charting category. A graph cannot be displayed full screen, and there are no salient tools to mention.

The Interactive Brokers site, by comparison, has very good charting. Software is provided by TradingView, and this means there are tons of tools. During our research, we found 10 plot styles. Examples include Kagi and Line Break. Besides these features and full-screen mode, charts can be customized with a variety of options.


Interactive Brokers vs tastyworks


The order ticket on IB’s site is also very useful. There are bracket orders and a price management algo checkbox.

Winner: Interactive Brokers


Fourth Category: Desktop Software


tastyworks does a much better job in the charting arena on its desktop platform. This time, a chart can be expanded the full width of the computer screen, and there are lots of technical studies. The right-click menu doesn’t have a trade button, although there are hyperlinked bid and ask prices at the top of the chart.


tastyworks vs IBKR


The order ticket on tasty’s desktop platform has the same time-in-force and order choices we saw on the browser system. This time, there are bracket orders.

For desktop trading, Interactive Brokers offers Trader Workstation. Even guests without an IB account can download the program and try it out.


IBKR or tastyworks


The order ticket has bracket orders and much more. There are some really advanced order choices like snap market and limit-on-close.

Charts on Trader Workstation are on a similar level as tasty’s desktop charts. A graph has technical studies and full-screen mode.

A big advantage TWS has over tasty is a practice mode that really helps to learn the software. And TWS also has multiple layouts.

Winner: Interactive Brokers


Fifth Category: Margin Services


Margin trading is, of course, available at both firms in this contest. A cash account at Interactive Brokers can be upgraded to margin status on the broker’s website. tastyworks does not offer this capability.

Both firms offer portfolio margin. tastyworks requires $175k, while Interactive Brokers has a $110k minimum.

As for pricing, Interactive Brokers is at 6.33% across all debit levels. tastyworks is on a tiered schedule. It starts at 11% and drops to 8%.

Winner: Interactive Brokers


Sixth Category: Day Trading and Swing Trading


Direct-access Routing: Interactive Brokers, but not tastyworks, has software that can send orders to specific market venues.

Extended Hours: Traders at both firms can submit orders before the opening bell and after the closing bell. Interactive Brokers has more hours.

Level II Quotes: Level II data will be found at Interactive Brokers but not at tastyworks.

Shorting: Interactive Broker’s website has a tool that shows how many shares are available for shorting, how many lenders have inventory, and what the fee and rebate rates are. tastyworks’ software simply shows if a stock is hard to borrow.

Routing Fees and Rebates: Available only with an Interactive Brokers account.

Winner: Interactive Brokers


Seventh Category: Crypto Trading


Cryptocurrencies are gaining in popularity, and both broker-dealers in this matchup now offer trading in them.

tastyworks clients can trade 25 coins. Besides the majors like Bitcoin, there are some exotics like Ox and Kyber Network. tastyworks’ commission on crypto trades is 1% of trade value on either side.

Interactive Brokers charges a much lower rate. It ranges between 0.12% and 0.18% of trade value. There are no markups or increased spreads, either. The downside is that Interactive Brokers only has 4 coins available for trading right now (Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum and Litecoin).

As futures brokers, both firms also offer cryptocurrency contracts on the futures exchanges.

Winner: Pretty even overall


Eighth Category: Additional Services


Initial Public Offerings: Not available at either brokerage house.

Individual Retirement Accounts: Both firms have the same IRAs. Only tastyworks has an IRA closeout fee. It is $60.

DRIP Service: Dividends from stocks and ETFs can be converted automatically into additional shares inside a tastyworks account. Interactive Brokers also has a dividend reinvestment plan, although it only works for stocks.

Banking Tools: Interactive Brokers, but not tastyworks, has a debit card.

Fractional-Share Trading: Stocks and funds can be purchased with whole dollars at Interactive Brokers only.

Recurring Purchases of Mutual Funds: Not available with either brokerage firm.

Winner: Interactive Brokers


Our Recommendations


Beginners: Because Trader Workstation has a demo mode, we suggest Interactive Brokers.

Mutual Fund Trading: Interactive Brokers is it.

Small Accounts: Interactive Brokers.

Stock & ETF Trading: With better research tools, we choose Interactive Brokers.

Long-Term Investors & Retirement Savers: As the only brokerage firm with mutual funds and no-fee IRAs, we once again pick Interactive Brokers.


Promotions


tastyworks: $0 commissions + $75 for each friend referred with this referral code.

Interactive Brokers: Use this referral link to get up to $1,000 of IBKR stock for free!



tastyworks vs Interactive Brokers Recap


tastyworks has a tasty name, but it hasn’t succeeded in dethroning Interactive Brokers.


Updated on 7/23/2022.


About the Author
Chad Morris is a financial writer with more than 20 years experience as both an English teacher and an avid trader. When he isn’t writing expert content for Brokerage-Review.com, Chad can usually be found managing his portfolio or building a new home computer.