How innovations in mobile trading have changed the way we invest

Not all mobile trading apps are the same. While most will offer a general trading account, some will also allow you to maximize your savings by offering products that take...

By MarketBeat Staff contributor/ - MarketBeat

This story originally appeared on MarketBeat

We can trace the history of stock market trading back centuries, from the first stocks to be sold to the public by the Dutch East India Company in 1602 to the development of electronic stock exchanges and now through to mobile trading. Stock markets have evolved greatly over time and continue to do so.

Powerful apps for flexible investing

The ease with which we can now invest gives us a level of access to the markets that were never possible in the past. It's easy to forget that the first electronic stock market was only opened in 1971 when the NASDAQ opened for business with no physical trading floors.

This means that for the vast majority of trading history, it was an activity that involved being in a specific place at the appropriate time to carry out the sale and purchase of stock. Since mobile trading apps have appeared, these barriers have been broken down and a wider pool of people have been able to access and invest in the stock market.

What used to take pages of paper, meetings, and potentially different companies can now all be done using your iPhone and in a single app. And with over six billion smartphone users around, this sort of app makes trading and investing instantly accessible to more people than in the past.

Not all mobile trading apps are the same. While most will offer a general trading account, some will also allow you to maximize your savings by offering products that take advantage of tax wrappers, such as stocks and shares ISA or self-invested personal pensions (SIPPs). Before investing take a look around to see which app suits your needs the best.

Useful features and new products

These services are not limited to iPhone users, Android users can also take advantage of simple trading apps t. And while features vary between products the most competent trading apps contain everything that a new or experienced investor might need to make investment decisions. Some companies have also innovated in terms of investment products. A key example is being able to own part of a share and not being limited to a whole share. If we were to look back at the past, there were some stocks that were simply out of reach because of their cost, with some of the biggest names costing hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars. Some brokers now allow users to hold fractional shares of their chosen stock within their trading apps, as it allows them to build up a portfolio without being locked out of the biggest commercial names in the US. This can help traders to diversify by allowing them to choose from stocks from all over the world and additional types of investment.

Increased security

Why do some people shy away from apps? Well, a big part of it is trust. When it comes to adopting new technologies, particularly financial ones, it takes people time to trust and eventually change their habits.

A key concern of investors has always been the safety of their cash, and not wanting to lose sight of it. Thankfully, mobile apps give traders a way of viewing their investments anywhere and any time they want to.

And just because it's app-based it doesn't mean your money is any less well looked after. Good companies will use the latest security technology and keep segregated funds for greater peace of mind. Look for apps from firms that are regulated by the likes of the UK's Financial Conduct Authority, as they are more likely to protect users under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.

With mobile technology increasing all the time, mobile trading is a sensible choice, if you keep in mind the basic mobile security tips that you need to follow no matter what you do on your device.

It's clear that mobile trading appeals to a huge number of people, and the power of the latest apps helps them to get started with ease. We can expect this market to continue growing as more new traders download the apps that meet their needs.

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