Skip to main content

Best Brokers with API Access: API Trading Platforms Reviewed

Pedro Braz| Updated February 1st, 2023
Best Brokers with API Access: API Trading Platforms Reviewed 3

Best Brokers with API Access: API Trading Platforms Reviewed

API Trading Platforms are buzzing these days. If you’re getting into Algorithmic Trading and want to test your trading strategies with automation or just want to build investment services, having a good API broker is the key to building an excellent system.

In this article, we’ll review a few API Brokers based on their features and reliability.

What is a Broker API?

Application Programming Interface (API) is a software application that establishes a connection of coded algorithms with that of a broker’s platform. It basically links an investor or trader’s front-end system with a broker’s back end system. Trading Broker API builds custom trading applications. Coded algorithms have become very popular since the past decade especially in the Forex Market.  The algorithmic trading market is expected to continue to grow , as new deep pocket players are entering this niche with their strategies.

Best API Brokers for 2023

Alpaca Trading

Commission-free broker focused on its API capabilities. Best for algorithmic trading.

TD Ameritrade

US commission-free broker. Best for US investors.

Interactive Brokers

One of the world’s leading brokers. Best for non-US investors.

Tradier

API-based cloud brokerage platform that enables trading of securities. Best for developers and self-directed investors.

Freedom24

It presents the TRADERNET API, which gives you the flexibility to get all sorts of market information. Best for beginner developers.

Best API Brokers Compared

Broker API Has Official API Commission fees Countries Available Instruments Covered
Alpaca Yes Free Australia, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Japan, Malaysia, Netherlands, Singapore, South Africa, UAE, UK, USA.  Stocks, ETFs, Crypto.
Interactive Brokers Yes $0 on stocks/ETFs

(US residents only)

$0.65 options, $0.85 futures(per contract)

Worldwide. Stocks, Options, Futures, ETFs, Currencies, Commodities, Currencies, Fixed Income, Crypto.
Tradier Yes Free 120+ Countries Stocks, Options.
TD Ameritrade Yes $0 on stocks, ETFs, Mutual Funds, $0.65 on options/contract. US, India, Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, Peru, Chile,  China, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand,Hong Kong, Taiwan, Switzerland, Costa Rica, among others. Stocks, Bonds & CDs, options, non-proprietary mutual funds, futures, forex and ETFs.
Freedom24 Yes From €/$0.008 per share (with a minimum of €/$1.2 per order) European Union, Qatar, Thailand, UAE, among others. Stocks, ETFs, Bonds, Futures, and Options

#1 Alpaca

alpaca
Visit Alpaca

Alpaca at a glance

Official APIYes
Commission feesFree
Countries availableAustralia, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Japan, Malaysia, Netherlands, Singapore, South Africa, UAE, UK, USA
InstrumentsStocks, ETFs, Crypto

With Alpaca’s API, you can paper trade in the sandbox environment before deployment.

The platform provides websocket streaming to its clients, which does not require any applications and can be accessed through a web browser.

The platform offers FastAPI from which you can expect low latency recall times, providing end users with minimal lag from the time of the request to response.

Detailed documentation can be found here.

#2 Interactive Brokers

interactive brokers logo
Visit Interactive Brokers

Interactive Brokers at a glance

Official APIYes
Commission fees$0 on stocks/ETFs (US residents only); $0.65 options, $0.85 futures (per contract)
Countries availableWorldwide (restrictions apply)
InstrumentsStocks, Options, Futures, ETFs, Currencies, Commodities, Currencies, Fixed Income

The platform offers 3 types of API by features: TWS API, Client Portal Web API, and FIX CTCI, of  which The Trader Workstation(TWS) API is the most popular.

TWS API is simple but powerful, using which you can build your own trading application or connect your front-end applications. 

Also with IBKR’s proprietary, open source API you can place orders, view trades and positions, access market data, news and account data.

Detailed documentation can be found here.

#3 TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade Logo - TD Ameritrade Review - Investing in the Web
Visit TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade at a glance

Official APIYes
Commission fees$0 on stocks, ETFs, Mutual Funds, $0.65 on options/contract
Countries availableUS, India, Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, Peru, Chile, China, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Switzerland, Costa Rica, among others
InstrumentsStocks, Bonds & CDs, options, non-proprietary mutual funds, futures, forex and ETFs

With TD Ameritrade API, You can get historical price data, Level 2 data but this requires you to create a developer account and register with the app. 

The platform offers an API that allows you to set a period for your testing,  as well as set a time frame for the back testing. 

It also offers a  summary of what your API response should look like, which is kinda cool if someone is just getting started. 

Detailed API documentation can be found here.

#4 Tradier

tradier
Visit Tradier

Tradier at a glance

Official APIYes
Commission feesFree
Countries available120+ Countries
InstrumentsStocks, Options

Tradier’s broker API uses OAuth 2.0 authentication which makes it easy to integrate into any application or development workflow.

In the event of an expected error, the platform’s API returns a JSON error payload, where it tells us which field was missed. The platform keeps  these errors simple and easy to understand.

Detailed documentation can be found here.

#5 Freedom24

Best Brokers with API Access: API Trading Platforms Reviewed 4
Visit Freedom24
Investing involves risk of loss.

Freedom24 at a glance

Official APIYes
Commission feesFrom €/$0.008 per share (with a minimum of €/$1.2 per order)
Countries availableEuropean Union, Qatar, Thailand, UAE, among others.
InstrumentsStocks, ETFs, Bonds, Futures, and Options

Freedom24’s broker API is called “TRADERNET API” and includes browser-based JavaScript, NodeJS, PHP and Python implementations.

The API highlights the list of fixes and updates to help easily analyse what is being improved. The API is applicable to Orders, Price Alerts, Quotes, Tickers and much more!

Detailed documentation can be found here.

The Bottom Line

To sum this up, here are our picks:

#1 Alpaca Best broker for API.
#2 Interactive Brokers Best for non-US investors.
#3 TD Ameritrade Better for US investors.
#4 Tradier Best for developers.
#5 Freedom24 Best for beginner developers.

Other FAQs

How to choose the best Broker API?

There’s no One Size fits All. Depending on which  application you  use,  API matters a lot. For example, if you’re an intraday trader who wants to play volatility, it’s best to choose the Broker API which has fast and seamless executions.

What are other applications of Broker API besides trading?

One can build investment services like portfolio analytics, charting or financial data offerings using API. Broker API can be useful for front-end and  existing applications.

What are advantages and disadvantages of API trading?

Advantages:

  • Faster Execution time: Trades can be executed faster than normal order placement. In this way you can capture small market moves quickly.
  • Strict Risk Management: As per need, strategies can be coded, which means your position size, entry price, and stop loss will be in sync. This reduces human emotions that are usually involved.

Disadvantages:

  • Need to have coding background: API trading needs at least a little coding background and it takes effort to read and understand API documentation.
  • Carries higher initial setup costs: Not all APIs are free, so your algorithm integration with a broker API carries costs like setting up virtual machines. So basically your investment is brokerage (if it’s not zero) plus the technology you’re paying for, before you start making any profits.

Does Webull have an API?

No, Webull does not offer an official API. 

Does DEGIRO have an API?

No, DEGIRO also does not have an official API. 

Does Trading 212 have an API?

No, Trading 212 does not have an official API – unofficial APIs exist, though.

Does Plus500 have an API?

No, Plus500 does not offer an API.

Pedro Braz
Co-Founder & Growth Manager

Pedro is passionate about finance, marketing, and technology. He is a growth manager at several online projects and a former digital marketer for a fintech company.

linkedin