Interactive Brokers

Interactive Brokers Reviews

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About Interactive Brokers

This profile has not been claimed by the company. See reviews below to learn more or submit your own review.

Interactive Brokers is an online broker of investment trading, including mutual funds, bonds, ETFs and other investment products. The company offers two trading plans, the IBKR Lite, which includes $0 commissions on U.S. stocks and ETF trades, and IBKR Pro, which includes access to the company’s SmartRouting system for a fee. The company allows domestic and international trading on its online platform or mobile app.

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Large investment selection
  • International trading available
  • Comprehensive mobile app
Cons
  • Unintuitive website
  • Some inactivity fees with IBKR Pro

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Interactive Brokers Reviews

Stars Rating

  • 1%
  • 3%
  • 2%
  • 3%
  • 90%

Popular Mentions

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    How do I know I can trust these reviews about Interactive Brokers?
    • 4,479,812 reviews on ConsumerAffairs are verified.
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    • We use intelligent software that helps us maintain the integrity of reviews.
    • Our moderators read all reviews to verify quality and helpfulness.
    Page 2 Reviews 10 - 40
    Customer ServiceStaff

    Reviewed Jan. 26, 2023

    I am a sophisticated trader with 40+ years of experience. I never write online reviews. But the attention to the customer of this company is so abysmal, I had to post. Today, I could not trade because my account got coded as though I reside in Japan (I have never been to Japan). After waiting on hold for 40 minutes, the guy tells me "yes, our tech team is working on this and all customers are affected." Is there not one thinking person at this company that would have thought to send customers an email or text message proactively stating this fact? These people that manage this company are total idiots when it comes to addressing the customer. The rare times I have had to use the client support message center, I get back a half-baked explanation - after 5 days. Unless the other features offered by this company are really important to you, I suggest you go elsewhere as their customer focus is non-existent.

    Reviewed Jan. 23, 2023

    Please away from this company! 1. I can guarantee that their trading platform would be the worst you ever encountered on earth. 2. They claim they have low margin rate, but they would sell your stock at lost without notifying you, on day 2 when you use your margin. Unlike other companies, they gave you 3 days to deposit more fund into your account. They simply assume you are poor and they do whatever they want to take your money.

    3. When I try to transfer my stock to other company, they reject me 10 times for different reasons. I could screenshot that if this website allow me to. I end up deposit more and more money into their account, just to get my kidnapped stock back. Although I have more than $2000 cash balance in account already. So far, still depositing more, no luck with that. Unlike other places, when you use ACH to directly withdraw from Your bank, it’s instant or holding 3 days only. They told me they hold the fund 44 days and during that time, I can’t touch my money and stock! I can’t transfer to any place, they will hold that for 44 days! What?! Maybe after 44 days, they will come up with any other excuse and won’t let me transfer my stock and money, be careful, it may take you years to get your money back once you deposit it into their account.

    Customer Service

    Reviewed Jan. 5, 2023

    Just like every other dumb schmuck out there, I was attracted by the low margin rates, but it's been almost FOUR WEEKS SINCE I FUNDED MY ACCOUNT AND IBKR WILL NOT DISPENSE THE FUNDS I WANT TO WITHDRAW. This is NOT a margin loan. It's settled cash in my account. WTH? They just keep sending me notices that I need to confirm "activity" and "changes made" - and when I call them they simply ask the same questions over and over (name, DOB, citizenship, "do you REALLY intend to take out this amount?", "what do you need this money for?" - WHAAAAAA???? You have the GALL to ask me what I want MY MONEY for??? This is the clown-show feature at amateur hour. I am going back to Vanguard PROMPTLY after IBKR GIVES MY MONEY TO ME.

    Price

    Reviewed Dec. 21, 2022

    I passed the General Principal's Exam decades ago - this gives me the ability to open up my own brokerage. I've written investment articles in 12 countries. The OTHER REVIEWS ARE NOT LYING. This the worst trading site and perhaps the worst and least user friendly site ever. I was dummy attracted by the low margin rates as I am investing more than a million dollars here. It's not worth it. Today it took 1 hr 21 min to reset my password. Each day there is a new problem.

    Reviewed Nov. 18, 2022

    They claim they paid my dividend to my account. But the statements they issue are so confusing there is no way to tell. There is no obvious way to determine if you have received dividends in your account. Do NOT use this company!!!!

    Customer ServiceOnline & App

    Reviewed Nov. 16, 2022

    My business opened a Business Brokerage account with Interactive Brokers and ended up closing it within the first year. We don't have experience with their desktop app having preferred to work through their website, however I found the website to be an absolute maze to the point that I couldn't use it to submit trades, which is its primary function. When I attempted to call customer service I would always receive the same error message, that service in English was unavailable at this time. Needless to say this is a very perplexing error to receive for a US based company. I would not recommend this company for Investment Brokerage services, especially if you run a small business.

    Verified purchase

    Reviewed Oct. 24, 2022

    I got stopped out 185 pips on top of my stop loss for holding my trade over the weekend. They said it was due to low liquidity and they pride themselves to be tight in the spread with good liquidity. A check with the other 5 major FX brokers all does not have their prices even come close to my stop loss. BTW, this is not the first time I face a liquidity issue with IB.

    Customer ServiceStaff

    Reviewed Sept. 20, 2022

    Placed a limit order for a credit spread on 3-11-2021 for 1.5 credit. It executed at a debit of 0.10. This time it was small loss but when it happened with bigger orders with thousands in loss, I had called customer service only to end up with absolutely rude person who won't let me complete my sentence and hung up. You would think he is having PMS. I would love to attach a picture here but don't see that option.

    Customer Service

    Reviewed Aug. 10, 2022

    Worst brokerage I've ever used. Closed my account within the first 3 weeks. The customer service is absolutely useless. TWS can be slow sometimes. Orders don't even fill as well as people claim. Stay away if you can or if you have other options.

    Reliability

    Reviewed June 15, 2022

    I have to spend some time to write this review about IBKR platforms to save peoples' time who are looking for brokers. I have used this broker for a couple of years, its platform is just a piece of garbage, one bug follows another bug, never end, also the same bug keeps emerging. The error message "logged in without data" comes daily, which prevents you to put any orders. If you like to have headaches, try this platform, otherwise keep away as far as possible.

    Customer ServiceOnline & App

    Reviewed June 7, 2022

    I've called several times over the course of several months and have been on the phone with them for over 30 minutes each session with no solution. I still cannot access my account. The last time I called I had to toggle between the app and website to try to fix my pw problem.?? This has gone on months. Still can't access my account.

    PriceStaff

    Reviewed April 11, 2022

    Because of my net worth and annual income, the amounts are "greater than most people your age," I have waited almost 3 weeks for approval. - Two (2) days ago I got a message saying, "Your application has been received"? (After 3 weeks?) So I cancelled my application yesterday. Today I got a message that my application had been denied?? Then attempting to recover funds deposited with application, has been 2 hours of hoops, hurdles and talking to agents. When I finally got to my acct and asked for a withdrawal, I got the message "Because you have used your one free withdrawal for the month, you will be charged an ACH fee." My God, how do these people get/keep customers???

    --- As a wise man once said, "I came with the facts, told nothing but the truth and was called a 'liar.' Next time I will be better prepared." --- No "next time" IBKR. At almost 70 yrs of age, 20+ years trading, and income/net worth "higher than most people your age," I am regarded as an IBKR "reject?" In the end it has to be age discrimination. --- LOLOLOLOL

    Customer ServicePrice

    Reviewed March 26, 2022

    Contacted them 4 times to get tax documents because I can't get logged into my closed account which they keep telling me I should be able to do for the purpose of getting the tax documents. They keep telling me it's been sent and still nothing. Also before closing account it was extremely difficult to get my money that was there, it took over an hour on the phone and two different people to try and figure it out. They would NOT work with the new firm that was given permission to handle everything dealing with transfers. Oh and the reason for moving the money is they started charging a monthly fee.

    Customer ServicePunctuality & SpeedStaff

    Reviewed Feb. 14, 2022

    I was a client of Interactive Brokers (IB) for over 15 years until recently. My experience with them had generally been good - granted, all I was doing with them was a moderate amount of trading of stocks and options, so I didn't need to interact with their customer service. Once I needed them to do something, the trouble began.

    In December 2021, a situation arose that I needed a US-listed stock transferred to my Interactive Brokers account from a transfer agent located in Canada. Because there was likely going to be a surge of people transferring and selling the stock at the same time as me (due to a SPAC-related restriction period expiring), I wanted to get the stock into my trading account as quickly as possible. I coordinated with the transfer agent and IB in the days leading up to the date that the restriction would expire, and confirmed that everything was in order to transfer the stock, which it was. Until the day came that the transfer was to be initiated.

    The morning of the date that the transfer was supposed to be initiated, I was contacted by Interactive Brokers for more information, which I promptly provided (of course, I had previously been assured that they had everything they needed, but so be it). A few hours later, I was contacted again - the person processing my transfer request, who I will refer to as IBREP, told me that the transfer could not be initiated because IB did not trade the "CAD version of this stock". That alone was not a surprising fact, since NO CAD VERSION OF THE STOCK EXISTS! The shares were US-listed shares held at a Canadian transfer agent - the transfer agent's written instructions (with which IB had been provided) specifically contemplated this scenario.

    I engaged in some back and forth with IBREP via IB's messaging system, because apparently the group that IBREP belongs to is not allowed to speak verbally to clients. So instead I had an infuriating text back and forth where IBREP continued to insist that my shares were in fact a Canadian stock and that there was no way that a US-listed stock could be held at a Canadian transfer agent. Which was obviously untrue, because my US-listed stock was held at the Canadian transfer agent at that moment! The fact that the CUSIP listed on my statement and the CUSIP for the US-listed stock were the same did not resonate with him - he continued to insist that I instead owned a stock that did not exist. When I called IB's customer service and told them I was having issues, they just directed me back to the chat with IBREP and said they could not help any further, I should direct all my inquiries to IBREP via the messaging system.

    At this point, I called the transfer agent's customer service to see if they could clarify the situation. The person I spoke with at the transfer agent was incredibly confused when I read him IBREP's messages, telling me, "I have no idea why they're telling you that; it doesn't make sense and it's not correct. All they need to do is submit a DRS request for these shares, it should be very standard."

    I then put IBREP in touch with the transfer agent, whose representatives he apparently spoke with. IBREP came back to me to tell me that the transfer agent had not been helpful. He continued to list problems with the transfer that made no sense and then asked me to provide more recent DRS Advices from the transfer agent, as the DRS Advices that I provided were more than a year old (according to him). That was news to me, as the statements I had provided were in fact only a month old!

    IBREP, supposedly an experienced expert at these transfers, had not even managed to correctly read the statements I had provided! Also, if he couldn't do the transfer at all, why did he need newer statements? It was pretty clear at that point that he had made up his mind not to do this transfer and was just stalling and trying to get rid of me (getting new DRS Advices from this transfer agent takes several days or weeks, which presumably would make me no longer IBREP's problem).

    I pointed out that my DRS Advices were in fact current, and IBREP did not even acknowledge his mistake. Instead he came up with new problems as to why the transfer would be difficult, and that IB would have to take additional steps to do transfers like this, and the standard procedures would not work. He now seemed to be saying that the transfer was possible, but he was very blatantly leaving it completely ambiguous as to whether or not IB was willing to take these steps. By this point the market had long closed for the day, and my friends who were in the same situation (but with other brokers) had initiated their transfers with no problems whatsoever.

    At this point I gave up trying to reason with IBREP and Interactive Brokers, and started an account with Charles Schwab instead. Charles Schwab was extremely easy to deal with and ultimately transferred the shares with no issues whatsoever. The debacle caused a 2-3 day delay in my shares being transferred, during which time the stock cratered, as expected, due to the sudden unlocking of huge numbers of shares. IB and IBREP's inability to do their job wound up costing me highly significant amounts of money. I closed my account with IB and will never, ever, ever recommend them to anyone ever again.

    Frankly, we need laws to deal with issues like this. The broker and its representatives should be held liable when they cause losses due to their incompetence. All of my interactions with IB and IBREP were recorded - I don't understand how IB continues to employ someone like IBREP after seeing how he handled a situation like this. IBREP claimed to be an expert with a decade of experience at his job, but he also seemed to have no idea what he was talking about and was saying things that were completely false and nonsensical. It seemed like at some point he was just trying to find a reason, any reason, real or made up, to deny the transfer. No brokerage should be allowed to operate like this.

    Conclusion: Interactive Brokers is fine as long as you don't need to use their customer service. But if you need them to do something, be ready to deal with people who don't know how to do their job, and, worse, either don't even seem to care or are actively working against you.

    Reliability

    Reviewed Jan. 27, 2022

    I have the same issues as the previous reviewer. You never know when you may or may not have made a trade... System logs you out without telling you or changing format so it LOOKS like you are still logged in. Absolutely terrifying and tear your hair out level frustrating. The TWS platform is ghastly and the customer online portal is 100% unreliable for even the simplest transaction. They took away their dedicated legacy webtrader a few months ago and it has been a disaster ever since. Moving everything out of there ASAP. AVOID AT ALL COSTS.

    Customer ServiceStaff

    Reviewed Jan. 11, 2022

    Dishonest, unethical, terrible customer service. I have been trying to get issue with its system since last summer. Every time I jump through one of their hoops, they set up another one. Today, I spoke with a condescending person who identified herself as "Joe" by randomly called to at about 19 times who informed every time to me that their old manager Brian will contact me and last week said by another Brian the old Brian is NOT manager anymore (fired??) and new manager Sue will contact us. NEVER again as expected!! More detail example in next reviews.

    Customer ServiceOnline & AppStaff

    Reviewed Jan. 10, 2022

    Absolutely horrible trading platform. And trying to talk to a customer service rep, yeah, right... Not gonna happen. Their website constantly kicks me out of being able to trade with the system saying that I already have a session opened (when I have not opened ANY other windows or browsers, just literally clicked on the open trade to go close it). Please avoid this company at all costs until they figure out that they are supposed to be providing services of value to their clients.

    Customer ServicePrice

    Reviewed Oct. 28, 2021

    They are known for being cheap but almost everything else about them is awful. One advantage they have is that they integrate with Global Auto Trading to allow for automatic trading based on some popular investment newsletters. But everything else is so much harder than it needs to be. Everything from site navigation to transferring funds to getting customer service all are woefully lacking. I spent 5 minutes just looking for my account number, for example. Want to get real-time quotes on basic stocks? Good luck finding how to do that. And on and on and on...

    Customer ServiceStaffProcess

    Reviewed Oct. 21, 2021

    Unhelpful and confused staff, really long waiting times to get through and then when I cancelled the process, held my initial deposit funds hostage with and unending stream if issues. For a simple custody account to migrate a 7 figure portfolio the amount of information was intrusive and not needed by any other platform. Appalling service, thank God I didn’t move substantial funds to this broker, I hate to see how poor their customer service is when a real problem presents itself. Bunch of pirates, stay away.

    Reviewed July 8, 2021

    Complete piece of garbage platform. First off, the technology is absolutely awful -- the user interface is terrible (super hard to really do anything), the tech is old (looks like something from 90s), and their basic capabilities are severely limited (can't even look at your account activity without clicking 17 buttons or even use a somewhat workable app).

    Second, the platform just isn't very smart. They freak out about market orders for ultra liquid securities like SPY or QQQ and send a million warnings to you. That is laughable. Lastly, the whole "no fees" thing is a joke. There are loads of hidden fees they try to hit you with (I got hit with a minimum balance fee when I put my first deposit in!). In an age of super user friendly platforms that are modern and intelligent (Ameritrade, Fidelity, Schwab, Robinhood), there is absolutely no need to use this crappy brokerage.

    Customer ServiceContract & TermsPrice

    Reviewed March 27, 2021

    IMHO, they are just another extension of the crooked minds of Wall Street. They just put a suit on before stealing from their customers. Their options/margin policies are arguably criminal--allowing purchase of an option with same day execution **only if THEY THINK the option will expire worthless**. And then, once that changes, you cant buy that option anymore. "because of margin requirements to exercise". Even if you want to exercise the option at 3:59 PM, yourself. Or heck, SPY options can be executed til 4:15. But no.

    On friday, I picked up 2500 contracts (100 shares per contract) in a SPY 3/26 393. I was in and out of these, but probably my basis was .10-.20 (per share if you're new to options... Total cost in about 25k = 2500 * .10*100. I sold some (1000) at about $0.22 at maybe 3:30 with the intent of reentering if it turned. It turned. So I tried to reenter. But then the "IB ALGO" decided that particular option was likely to expire ITM, and thusly decided I could **no longer buy it back**.

    From there, the option rallied to .91 cents by about 3:51, when you the IB algo sold basically ALL of the remainder of my contracts, leaving me with like 20 or something of a similar magnitude. In the next nine minutes, the option rallied to $2.50. From $0.20. Then, just after close, I sold my remaining, I don't know, like 17 contracts. ...Cause you can execute spy options after close. But the algo doesn't provide this option.

    You'll note, I intended, and had IB not screwed me with their "default policies" "enforced by algo", I would have nailed at least a 10x on 25k. Possibly as much as a 20x on 25k. In like 3 hours. This is like, the best trade ever. And that's like, a lot of money. And it's my birthday week, and I know that's irrelevant, but man. The way I see it, I should have ended the day with at least 250k in new cash, maybe as much as half a mil. But then IB screwed me, cuz your "policy". Yes, I understand this is the policy of most brokerages. I use three to trade options. Yes, I understand margin. But, no, this is absurd.

    IB has access to basically unlimited cash at basically 0 cost through the overnight markets. IB can borrow at zero, and execute my 500k profit of options to the 7mm worth of shares, then sell them immediately. Or, just sell the option at 4:01. AND IB then could CHARGE ME BOTH COMMISSION (on 500k profit) AND MARGIN (on 7mm). But you refuse to.

    It makes no sense that you would refuse that profit, so I have to assume they didn't actually liquidate those options, but shifted them to their own balance sheet once they decided they were "becoming more profitable". And, I would get it, if at any time customer service reps had said "the SEC requires...". BUT THEY DIDN'T because THEY DONT. IB are crooks, like the rest of the financial industry. Yeah look, I didn't have 7mm in cash, but I have plenty of mm in assets, and you'll be hearing from a lawyer as well as the BBB. And if we don't resolve this, I have half a mind to start my own brokerage, because DAMN.

    Customer ServiceEase of Use

    Reviewed Dec. 4, 2020

    The best thing about IB was the low commissions. However, now everyone has those so it's not really a differentiator any more. That said the platform is customizable and fairly easy to use after some practice. However, the customer service is weak. They take up to two days to get back to you and oftentimes the responses are vague or don't answer your question at all. I'd recommend if you're looking for a powerful trading platform and can mostly get by without customer support.

    Customer ServicePrice

    Reviewed March 31, 2020

    I am Financial Adviser and have been working with Interactive Brokers on my personal as well as my clients' accounts for 15 years. It used to be a cheap alternative for online trading with a very good electronic trading platform. They have always been bad when it came to the customer service. But recently things got worse and worse and worse. They do not follow industry standards on Margin Requirements for example. The customer service never properly answer any questions. And they are all too eager to make trades in your account to help benefit to their own traders. I am advising all my new clients to open an account with an alternative broker for the last year or so. I also advised older clients with an existing Interactive Brokers account to move their business to another broker.

    Punctuality & SpeedStaff

    Reviewed Jan. 23, 2020

    My mother had her trust account with Interactive Brokers. When she passed, there was a dispute between family members that went before a judge to be settled. Even though we had a court order on how funds were to be dispersed, it took Interactive Brokers over six weeks to take action. Slowest people on the planet! No way would I ever leave my money with them.

    Verified purchase
    Customer ServicePriceStaff

    Reviewed March 22, 2018

    IB is cheap. That is the only advantage. You get what you pay for. Service does not exist. You deal with callcenter employees who have no clue and no power to help you as a customer. If you ask for a supervisor they will put you on hold for 40 minutes and promise a callback which will never happen. The internal system is broken. They answer with text modules which sound like sent from a bot and which have nothing to do with your questions. Be warned: they do not return your funds and they will not tell you why even though you do not owe them anything and you just want your funds back. Better get Schwab, Fidelity, Scottrade or Ameritrade. They all are excellent in customer service and you can talk to a supervisor who will make it right.

    Ease of Use

    Reviewed March 14, 2018

    The IA platform is a bit more difficult to navigate than other online brokers I've used in the past. So there was definitely a learning curve. They do provide ways to speed up this curve, however, and I've availed myself of them from time-to-time. When the going got too difficult, I contacted their Chat function and was very happy with the results. Overall, I think this has been a good move for me!

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    Interactive Brokers Company Information

    Company Name:
    Interactive Brokers
    Website:
    www.interactivebrokers.com