Updated on September 30th,2017
With the increase in number of stock broker, people have a lot of stock brokers to choose from, but still it is not easy to choose. You need to be sure of what is that you want from the Brokers. Some pointers to keep in mind before deciding which broker would be a best fit for you are :-
1) Full service or discount broker: The main difference among them is full service broker would charge you brokerage as a percentage of your trade value(for ICICI it lies between .5% – .9%). while discount broker (Zerodha, Upstox) are much cheaper charging you based on per trade. Most of the discount brokers charges between Rs 15 to Rs 20 per trade irrespective of the trade volume. So if you are going to trade multiple times a month, go for a discount broker rather than a full service one. To understand there difference better, please have a look at the video below.
2) Online trading vs Offline/Phone trading: Most of the brokers have started to provide online trading services to their customers. Some of them also provide trading on phone or even physically at their location. Decide what would be a good fit for you. If you are comfortable trading online from your laptop/desktop, you will find that most of the major brokers are providing that services. There are some people who prefer to trade on brokers terminal or want on call support while trading. Make sure that the broker you choose provide the service you are looking for.
3) How often do you trade: Whether you are a trader or investor. Investor is someone who trades few times a year while trader will trade at least few times a month. If you are an investor brokerage generally won’t make a big difference in your returns while if you are a trader, brokerage can mean whether you end up making a profit or loss. So decide whether you want to be a trader or investor before choosing a broker.
4) Will you require advice to trade: Would you need financial adviser to suggest you trades or would you be trading on your own? If you need adviser, remember to get some historical data of how good the broker is known to provide advice is and would you be comfortable giving him your money. Full service broker generally will have research desk which will send you a lot of recommendations for trading in stocks. Do remember to check there historical recommendations and if it matches your investment needs. Some of the full service broker will even provide you with the service of Relationship manager which will call you a couple of times a month and telling you about the new investment ideas.
5) Doing trade without internet: One more thing to keep in mind while looking at the broker is whether or not it provides call-n-trade service. Because even if you have a Smartphone, there could be a possibility that you are not able to access your account due to slow internet speed. Then you should be able to call you broker for closing the trade. Most of the broker provide call-n-trade service but ask what is the extra charge for using that service if any. Also some broker say that the provide this service but when you try to call then, the number is always busy. Make sure that you ask them what is the normal wait time to get call-n-trade service.
6) Trading with local Brokers: Newer generation traders are tech savvy and don’t mind to trade online. If you are like them, discount brokers would be a good fit and if you are someone who prefers to know the face of the brokers, this list would be of little use to you as I have not included any local brokers here. But if you do use local brokers, I would suggest that at least compare their brokerages with some of the new discount brokers to see how much money you are losing by way of higher brokerage. We would strongly suggest that if you are trading with Local brokers, you be aware that they are doing financially OK. In last couple of years, there have been defaults by local brokers.
7) Trading platform provided: One more important thing to ask is what trading platform is provided by your broker and is there any extra charge for accessing that. Most of the big broker have started providing their own proprietary platform. These new trading platform make trading easy and would take you just couple of hours to get used to trading platform. Do remember that some of the local brokers still provide NEST and ODIN platform for trading. Some people do face issues while trading on them as the phone hangs and quotes are not refreshed. We will advise you to research little more about the trading platform provided by the brokers before deciding on the same
In the last couple of years, with the increase in internet penetration and coming of smartphone in India, I have added some of the major discount brokers also in the top 10 list. They are not the largest but are giving full service brokers a run for their money and increasing their market share every quarter. I would suggest to read there reviews before finalizing the brokers. Times are changing and I think that in next couple of years more and more brokers would move from being a Full service broker to Discount brokers. And as far as safety of discount brokers are concerned, most of the brokers have a robust risk management in place and follow stringent SEBI rules.
Best discount brokers in India
1) Zerodha : They are one of the largest and oldest Discount broker in India having more than 350,000+ clients. They have a very competitive and a simple brokerage structure in which for delivery based trades they take Zero brokerage and for intraday and F&O trades, the brokerage is 0.01% (Rs 10 on 1 Lakh trade) or Rs 20 whichever is lower. The account opening process is also very easy and Zerodha account can now be opened completely online. They also have a trading platform called KITE which you can run through your browser or by installing on App on your smart phone.
They are one of the few discount broker who have their own Proprietor trading/charting desktop software caller Pi which allows for writing custom algorithm. PI has to be installed on your computer to make trades. Zerodha is also one of the most innovative broker and provide range of financial products which include smallcase, a thematic based investment product, Coin, a star BSE mutual fund platform using which you can buy Direct mutual funds and many more.
The good thing about these discount brokers is you may never have to visit their offices. The forms can be filled online and the application can be shipped to them. This type of discount brokers are new in India and providing tough competition to full service brokers. You can find detailed review about Zerodha review here
2) UPSTOX: Upstox formerly known as RKSV is a discount broker operating from Mumbai. They provide very competitive rates of Rs 20 per trade irrespective of the size of the trade. With them also, delivery based trades are free. They also provide a cutting edge trading platform called Upstox Pro which could be run from browser or by installing the App. There account opening process with Upstox is also very easy and most of the work can be completed online. You can find more detail about account opening here.
3) Fyers: They are one of the newer discount Brokers and provide brokerage rate of .1% for delivery and .01% for intraday. The thing to keep in mind with them is the brokerage is capped at Rs 100 per trade. They provide one the the best trading platform which is built in house completely.
Best Full service brokers in India
1) Angel Broking : Incorporated in 1987, Angel Broking has become one of the most respected Stock-Broking and Wealth Management Companies in India. They have built up a huge network of Branches and Franchises (More than 900 cities and 8500 Franchises) thereby maintaining a great support system for investors who prefer human interactions while trading. Alternatively you can use their Trading platforms for the device of your choice be it the Web, Smartphones, Tablets and Desktops. They have more than 10 lakh clients which trades with them. Please read Angel Broking review here.
They are providing an account opening offer in which you can open account for free. Please provide your details by clicking on the button below and you will receive a call within 30 mins.
2) ICICI Direct: By far the biggest and best know full service stock broker in India. They have good service and easy to use user interface. There brokerage is on the higher side and varies from 0.55% to .20% depending on the value of trades you do with them. There biggest selling point is there seamless integration with your ICICI bank account which makes transfer/withdrawal of funds really easy and quick. They also offer special product like valid till cancel and even T+90 trading in BSE segment.
3) Motilal Oswal : These are one of the oldest and reputed brokers operating in India. They are also full service brokers providing gamut of financial service to the customer. They are best known for there advisory service provided by them. They have more than 8 lakh customer trading with them. You can find detailed review about Motilal Oswal here.
4) ShareKhan : Incorporated in February 2000, Sharekhan is India’s 2nd largest stock broker as per number of customers, providing brokerage services through its online trading website Sharekhan.com and 1950 Share shops which includes branches & Franchises in more than 575 cities across India. They are full service broker and provide various other services like asset management etc. You can find my detailed review for Sharekhan brokerage charges here. As of July 30th , BNP Paribas have purchased ShareKhan for Rs 2,200 crore. We don’t expect major changes due to the buyout.
5) HDFC Security: They are one of the larger broking houses in India and with their bank branches, they have one of the largest network which is only after ICICI. They have a vast network of bank branch in even smaller town. Most of the investor who have a bank account end up opening a trading/Demat account with them. They are good full service brokers providing all major services like research desk, mutual fund investments and portfolio management services. You can find detailed review about HDFC security here.
6) Kotak Securities: They are one more well know name in Financial services and with their bank branches in big cities they are able to cater to clients in big cities. There online service is decent but brokerage is not that competitive. You can find detailed review about Kotak Security here.
7) Reliance Money: They came with a bang but lately have lost a lot of sheen from their name. There have been lots of question about their business practices. You can find detailed review about reliance money here.
Apart from this, some other notable names in brokerage industry in India are Karvy, Axis direct and SBI cap.
After reading the list, I hope you will be able to select the right brokers for your needs. Do remember that brokerage is important but should not be the only reason to select the broker. Talk to some of them, get a feel and ask any question you may have from them. Once you are comfortable only then open an account with them.
I understand that some of you would say that this list is missing some of the major Brokers in India but I have tried my level best to common up with this list. If you feel that I have missed someone, do let me know in the comments.
If you still have some questions about who would be the best broker for you, please provide your details here and we would call you and try to answer all your questions.