When you invest money, your capital is at risk. Investments can go down as well as up in value, so you could get back less than you put in. A rule of thumb is to hang on to your investments for at least five years to give them the best chance of providing the returns you are hoping for.

Interactive Investor vs Stake

Updated On: Mar 11, 2022
Interactive Investor vs Stake

Below, we compare two of the best trading apps in the UK - Interactive Investor and Stake.


Interactive Investor is an online investment service providing you with the tools and support you need to manage shares, funds, ISAs, SIPPs and more, whereas Stake is a digital brokerage app that gives you direct access to the US stock market and allows you to invest in over 4,500 US stocks and ETFs, commission-free. Stake does not offer ISAs or SIPPs.


Use the tabs below to learn more about the similarities and differences between Interactive Investor and Stake.

Interactive InvestorStake Logo

Interactive Investor - Access over 40,000 UK and overseas investments

Is Interactive Investor any good?

Interactive Investor is the UK’s leading flat-fee investment platform, providing award-winning investment services and financial information since 1995.

Its key mission is to give DIY investors the tools and support they need to make informed investment decisions.

With Interactive Investor, you can open a range of investment accounts, including a Stocks and Shares ISA, General Trading Account, and Self Invested Personal Pension (SIPP).

If you choose to invest with Interactive Investor, you’ll gain access to the largest number of UK investment options in the market. You can invest in over 40,000 equities across the world's leading exchanges in multiple currencies, and the widest range of funds, investment trusts, and exchange-traded funds (ETFs).

For more information, visit Interactive Investor.

How does Interactive Investor work?

With Interactive Investor, you can invest as follows:


Stocks and Shares ISA

  • An Interactive Investor ISA allows up to £20,000 of tax-free investments per year, with the option to invest in a broad range of shares, funds, ETFs, investment trusts and more.
  • With regular investing, you can contribute as little as £25 a month. The process takes just a few minutes, and you can use the web, tablet or mobile app to track your portfolio.

Click here to learn more about the Interactive Investor Stocks and Shares ISA.


‍Junior ISA

  • Interactive Investor’s Junior ISA is designed to help you build up a sum of money through tax-efficient investment on behalf of a child. Those with parental responsibility can open a Junior ISA and invest a maximum of £9,000 per annum, tax-free.
  • Like a standard ISA, the minimum contribution to start investing in an Interactive Investor Junior ISA is £25 a month.
  • The Junior ISA must be opened by the parent or guardian of the child, but anyone can pay into it. Once the child turns 16, they can manage the account, and once they turn 18, the Junior ISA becomes a standard adult ISA that the child can withdraw cash from.

Click here to learn more about the Interactive Investor Junior ISA.


Self-Invested Personal Pension (SIPP)

  • An Interactive Investor SIPP offers a tax-efficient way to build up an income for when you retire.
  • As with most pensions, you’ll receive tax relief on up to 100% of your earnings every year, with the maximum cap at £40,000. In essence, your contributions are topped up by the government with an additional 20% - so if you decide to invest £8,000, the government will contribute a further £2,000, bringing your total to £10,000.
  • Interactive Investor gives you the freedom to decide exactly where your pension is invested, and because it charges a simple flat fee every month, you can keep more of what you make from your investments as they grow.
  • For higher rate and additional rate taxpayers, further tax relief can be claimed through a self-assessment tax return.

Special offer: Open a SIPP and pay no monthly fee for 6 months. Terms apply.

Click here for more information on the Interactive Investor SIPP.


Trading Account

  • Interactive Investor’s Trading Account offers a flexible approach to investing, so it is perfect for those who want uncapped investment options.
  • Along with the choice to invest in a broad range of shares, funds, trusts and ETFs, you’ll be sent expert insights to help make you a more confident investor.
  • With Interactive Investor, you can save in currency costs by managing your money in multiple currencies across the world's leading exchanges.
  • Using the Interactive Investor iOS or Android app, you can access your money and trade securely at any time.

Click here for more information on the Interactive Investor Trading Account.

Other services and features

Quick Start Funds

Quick Start Funds is designed to make investing easy through ready-made portfolios. You can choose from six competitively charged funds provided by investment firms Vanguard and BMO, depending on your risk appetite.

This includes three passively managed funds (Vanguard) that aim to return the market's performance over time, and three actively managed funds (BMO) that aim to deliver better returns than the market.


Click here to find out more about Quick Start Funds and what one might be right for you.


Model Portfolios

Interactive Investor has five model portfolios to help you reach your investment goals. This includes growth and income options, as well as an ethical portfolio.

As the names suggest, the growth portfolios focus on helping you grow your money over a more extended period of time, the income portfolios are designed for those looking to draw a regular income from their investments, and the ethical portfolio demonstrates how you can align your principles and values to your investments


Click here to learn more about Interactive Investor Model Portfolios.


Free Research Account

When you open a free research account with Interactive Investor, you gain access to additional insights, watchlists, a virtual portfolio and email updates.


Ethical Investing: ACE & ACE 40

For those who prefer to invest ethically, Interactive Investor have created three ethical investment styles called ‘ACE’. These represent  ‘Avoid’, ‘Considers’ and ‘Embraces’ - each containing carefully selected funds that take into account strict environmental and social governance criteria.

Interactive Investor also offers a useful resource called ACE 40 - a list of over 140 ethical investment options to help you identify the environmentally and socially responsible funds, trusts and ETFs that best reflect your values.


Company Account

An Interactive Investor Company Account gives you the option to trade in the name of a UK limited company. You can invest in funds, ETFs, investment trusts, and both UK and international equities.


Pension Trading Account

Use your Interactive Investor Pension Trading Account to buy a range of shares, funds, ETFs and investment trusts. You can set the account up to link with an existing SIPP or SSAS run by your preferred pension provider.

It can then be used to manage your pension, but your provider will handle any queries relating to paying contributions or updating your details as normal.


ii Super 60

The ii Super 60 is Interactive Investor’s rated list of quality investment options, sorted into asset groups and investment categories.

With a range of active and passive funds, ETFs and investment trusts, it’s a great tool to track the market environment and find exactly what assets are best suited to your investment needs.

How do I trade with Interactive Investor?

When you sign up to an Interactive Investor trading account, you gain access to over 40,000 investments, including UK and overseas shares, funds, investment trusts, and ETFs. You can invest through an ISA, SIPP and more, with access to a free research account for additional insights.


The trading account offers a history of documents and transactions relating to your investments, to give you a clearer view of your personal investment history. There is also an option to create watchlists as part of a Virtual Portfolio so that you can track a portfolio of shares, ETFs, investment trusts and more.


In essence, the platform allows you to manage all of your investment needs in one place via the web, tablet or app.

Click here to learn more.

What are Interactive Investor’s charges?

Interactive Investor has three subscription plans to choose from:

Investor Plan (£9.99 per month): All the basics. This plan gives you access to a trading account, ISA, and as many Junior ISAs as you have children. It also comes with one free trade (funds or shares), free regular investing, and for an extra £10, you can add a SIPP. Additional trades are £7.99 per trade.

Pension Builder (£12.99 per month): A simple, low-cost SIPP.
This plan gives you access to a Self-Invested Personal Pension (SIPP) and the same full range of investment options as the Investor plan. The plan also comes with free regular investing, but there is no free trade. Trades are £7.99 per trade.

Super Investor (£19.99 per month): Lowest trading fees.
This plan gives you access to a trading account, ISA, and as many Junior ISAs as you have children. It also comes with two free trades (funds or shares), free regular investing, and free Friends and Family (which allows you to invite others to invest through your plan without paying a monthly fee). Additional trades are £3.99 per trade, and for an extra £10, you can add a SIPP.


‍Regular Investing Service: No charge


Click here for a more detailed breakdown of rates and charges.


Is Interactive Investor expensive?

Interactive Investor offers a simple and transparent flat-fee that starts at £9.99 and increases depending on what additional features you wish to use. It doesn’t charge percentage-based fees like other investment platforms do, which means you can keep more of your investments as they grow. There are also no leaving or joining fees, making the process of moving your money quick and easy.


Click here for a more detailed breakdown of rates and charges.


You can also use our investment platform or stock broker comparison table to see how Interactive Investor compares to other investment platforms in the UK.

Is Interactive Investor good for beginners?

Interactive Investor’s platform is designed to give DIY investors, including beginners and experts, the tools and support to make informed investment decisions.

It aims to provide useful financial information to help simplify the investment process and offers a wide range of investment options so that you can choose what’s best for you.

Is Interactive Investor safe?

Interactive Investor offers its customers Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) protection, which means that your assets are protected up to £85,000 per person.

This means you can get your money back if Interactive Investor were to go bust. Keep in mind that the FSCS does not cover losses arising from the performance of any of your investments.

Is Interactive Investor regulated by the FCA?

Yes, Interactive Investor is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Have a look at their permissions on the FCA Register.

Does Interactive Investor have a referral scheme?

No.

How do I open an account with Interactive Investor?

Stake - Access over 4,500 US stocks and ETFs, commission-free

Is Stake any good?

Stake is an Australian-born digital brokerage platform that has recently moved into the UK market. It allows you to invest in over 4,500 US stocks and ETFs, commission-free.


Stake believes that opportunity shouldn’t be determined by where you live. Its core mission is to provide the broadest and most direct access to the US stock market for those who live outside of the US, thus allowing you to invest in over 4,500 US stocks and ETFs, commission-free.  


It uses advanced technology to deliver a sophisticated and seamless service, offering a straightforward user experience for investing basics, along with some of its more sophisticated features. These include analyst ratings and the option to trade on unsettled funds as part of the Stake Black subscription package.  


At present, Stake is an app-only service for UK residents.


Click here to learn more about Stake.

How does Stake work?

To get started with Stake, you simply choose your preferred brokerage pack (Stake or Stake Black) and begin investing.

Here's a breakdown of how Stake works:


Commission Free Trading 

  • With Stake, you can trade the US market with zero brokerage fees. This includes market orders, limit orders, stop-loss orders and fractional shares.
  • FX fees are only limited to deposits and withdrawals at 0.5% (US$2 minimum), which means you also pay zero FX fees for every trade you make.


Advanced Order Types

  • When investing with Stake, you’ll have the option to choose from three different order types - Limit Orders consisting of Limit Buys and Limit Sells, Market Orders consisting of Market Buys and Sells, and Stop Orders.
  • You can choose your preferred order type based on your investment style and goals.


Real-Time US Market Data

  • With Steak, you’ll have access to a ‘Wall Street’ tab displaying live and real-time data sourced from the US exchanges.  Live data can be accessed by all Stake registered customers when the market is open.
  • View consolidated market data via the NBBO feed, which displays the best bid and offer across all US exchanges. This will allow you complete visibility of the market before making orders.

Visit Stake to learn more.

Other services and features

Fractional Shares

With Stake, you can buy and sell securities in fractional amounts using market and stop orders. When buying fractional shares, you can set the dollar amount you’d like to purchase, whereas selling involves setting the number of shares you’d like to sell. 

Fractional shares adhere to the NBBO rules of the US market, so you’ll get the best price in the market at the time. 

‍Track and Review Investments

Get complete visibility of trades, dividends, and more with Stake’s activity ticker. Monitor the recent trade and cash movements in your account, review each transaction in detail and get access to your trade confirmations.

With Stake, you can also download a series of reports for a full review of your investment activity. These include all financial transactions in your brokerage account, all orders, open positions and resting order, and monthly account statements for an overall view of your monthly investment activity.

How do I trade with Stake?

To get started with Stake, you simply choose your preferred brokerage pack (Stake or Stake Black) and begin investing. 


When you download the app and complete a short onboarding form, you can start transferring funds from your bank account through Stake’s secure Open Banking integration. 


When making a deposit, your money will be converted into US dollars, and all of your trading will be handled in US dollars. This means you won’t have to pay FX fees on any of your trades, but you will pay to convert it. Once you’ve added your funds, you can start investing.


Funding your account for the first time on Stake will get you free Stock of Nike, GoPro or Dropbox, but you’ll need to add your funds within 24 hours of it opening. Please note that there is a minimum fund amount of US$50 to get started.

What are Stake's charges?

It’s free to download the app and use Stake for its core features. Stake charges a 0.5% (US$2 minimum) FX fee on deposits and withdrawals. No FX fees are charged on trades.


There are two accounts to choose from:


Stake (free)

  • Access to all assets on the platform
  • Unlimited commission-free trades
  • Advance order types
  • Fractional trading


Stake Black (US$9/month)

  • Analyst ratings
  • Price targets
  • Full company financials
  • Trading on unsettled funds


Other Stake fees you should know about:

US trading fees: 

There may be a small number of US trading and administrative fees to pay when investing with Stake. You can read more about this on Stake’s website.


Currency exchange fee: 

Although you are not charged foreign exchange fees on your trades, you’ll incur a 0.5% foreign exchange fee when converting your money from USD to GBP.


Funding fees:

If you want to deposit money at a faster rate, you’ll pay a 0.5% express funding fee.

Is Stake expensive?

Stake’s basic service is free to use and offers access to all assets on the platform, along with unlimited commission-free trades, advanced order types and fractional trading.

Users can choose to upgrade to Stake Black for more sophisticated trading features such as analyst ratings and price targets, at a cost of US$9 per month.

It’s important to note that Stake has a minimum investment amount of US$50 for either of these accounts, and a 0.5% FX fee on deposits and withdrawals.

Is Stake good for beginners?

Stake's free service offers beginners a good starting place to navigate the stock market through investing essentials such as Limit, Market and Stop Orders, along with the option to buy fractional shares.

For the more advanced investor, Stake's premium service, 'Stake Black', allows for a range of additional features, including pricing targets, analyst ratings and access to pro-level data. You'll have the freedom to choose your preferred Stake package based on your own investing experience.

Is Stake safe?

Stake UK offers its customers Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) protection, which means that your assets are protected up to £85,000 per person. This means you can get your money back if Stake were to go bust.

Keep in mind that the FSCS does not cover losses arising from the performance of any of your investments.

Stake’s partnership with members of the US-led Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) also offers up to US$500,000 protection, US$250k of which are for investments, and a further US$250k for cash.

Is Stake regulated by the FCA?

Yes, Stake is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Have a look at their permissions on the FCA Register.

Does Stake have a referral scheme?

Yes, Stakes offers a free stock to both new and existing customers who successfully refer new customers.

New customers must fund their account (£50 min funding value) within 24hrs of opening the account to receive a free stock worth up to US$150 in value.

How do I open an account with Stake?

Visit Stake’s website here.

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