Best broker and best online trading account in India

October 15, 2012Grow Money


People have always been sceptical about trading, they say it is neither a profession nor a hobby for the masses. Only the smart and the wise can pull off the trick called Investment. Well, this notion itself is a myth! If a person can understand what is trading, know-how’s and the ground rules, he will be all set to play the dice on his own. Trading is nothing but buying and selling of commodities, securities and services expecting a profitable gain in monetary terms. Mentoring and reminding you about the rough edges of the stock market is the broker.

The Broker is nothing but an intermediary, he buys and sells stocks and securities on your behalf. He is considered the eyes, ears and nose of the stock market. If Google is God to IITians then a broker is God in disguise for the investors. Because of technological breakthrough, the role of a broker has been cut short due to online trading.

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Online Trading

Online trading is a novel concept, contrived to enable individual investing and trading. There was a time when the traders and investors had to meet the broker at the stock market, which is known as floor trading. Several obstacles such as busy telephone lines, location constraints, miscommunication etc led investors to favour online trading. Today there is no need to meet the broker in person, all you need is an online account and the brainpower to make rewarding decisions. The online trading company you are associated with automatically becomes your broker. For example, if you are trading via HDFC Securities, then this particular company will be representing you. Moreover when trading online, every piece of information necessary to make the right decision is displayed on the screen through charts, alerts, real time data and stock market news.

The best brokers reining the roost are:

  • ICICI Direct – This broker provides top drawing mutual fund and online trading facility in the country.
  • India Infoline – This broker has substantial business and is a well established stock broking company.
  • HDFC Securities – This broking company has been engaged in the capital market for years and is responsible for minting millions for many.
  • Sharekhan – This is a well known online trading website equipped with the right tools, to help you buy profitable shares.
  • Kotak Securities – This broking company brandishes a high profile clientele and is a respected group all over the country.
  • Angel Broking – This broking company has been voted as one of the top 5 trading companies in India.

To make the choice easier for beginners here is an evaluation chart of best brokers based on important aspects of trade:


Best Online trading account Brokerage rate(opening charges) Intraday Buy / sell Delivery Buy / sell  Futures Buy / sell Other charges Margin requirement / exposure limit
ICICI Direct Rs. 975 0.275% 0.55% 0.05% to 0.03% Nil 0.05% to 0.03%
India Infoline Rs. 750 0.05% 0.50% 0.05% Nil 0.05%
HDFC Securities Rs. 799 0.10% 0.50% 0.05% Nil 0.05%
Sharekhan Rs. 750 0.10% 0.50% 0.10% Nil Nil
Kotak Securities Rs. 750 0.49% 0.49% 0.49% Nil Nil
Angel Broking Nil 0.04% to 0.01% 0.40% to 0.10% 0.04% to 0.01% Nil Nil

The above table aides you in selecting the best online broker and the best online trading account respectively. However it is important to consider certain points when scouting for the best online trading account. Factors like:

  • Quality information: the best online trading account will make sure you are being provided with real time information and the best online tools available.
  • Credibility: the online broking account needs to have the support of a well established and respected bank or a financial institution to guarantee the safety of your investment.
  • Service quality: the best online broker is the one that provides quick confirmations even during peak hours.
  • Customer support: The best trading account will have customer support in place to tend to your queries right when you have them.

Based on the above findings, Kotak Securities seems like the best broker in India. It has intelligently marked its place safely in the stock market. Kotak Securities cannot be termed as a risk taker nor as a numbers runner, it calculates its game and then shuffles it away.

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About Naimisha Parekh
Online shopping addict, personal finance advisor, mother and a loving wife :)
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53 Responses to “Best broker and best online trading account in India”

  • ebroking October 31, 201212:15 pm

    I can see a good research done behind this post by Naimisha. Online trading in India is growing day by day with many investors willing to trade using online portals. Saves time, saves money and you will constantly updating yourself about the prices.

  • SP January 1, 201311:58 am

    I have found your articles quite informative. Thanks for sharing and will be looking to reading more on tax-planning, stock investing and other financial/investing blogs of yours.

    I had a query on this blog ( and the other one which talks about demat account (

    What is the difference between the Demat Brokerage charges (e.g., from your blog, for Kotak Securities, it is mentioned as 59 paise Delivery, 6 paise Intraday) and Intraday or Delivery Buy/Sell (e.g., for Kotak Securities, you cited it as 0.49% for Kotak Securities) for Trading Account.

    I have heard about the brokerage charges (former) but am not aware of any other charge towards trading – hence this query.

    Thanks in advance !

    • Naimisha January 1, 20132:39 pm

      There are two kind of charges:
      1. Brokerage charges: Intraday buy/sell, delivery buy/sell, etc
      2. Demat charges: Every time securities move into or move out of demat account, you may be charged. Besides, there are annual maintenance charges for your demat account.

  • Varun January 22, 20136:16 pm

    Thanks for such a comprehensive article! Just a question, to summarize your posts on Demat accounts and broker/online trading accounts – You mentioned that it would be best to have both accounts taken from the same provider. What in your opinion would be the best package in this case? I am aware you mentioned Angel for Demat and Kotak for broker/online trading, however in case I want both accounts with the same provider, what would be the best option to go with?

    • Naimisha January 22, 20136:34 pm

      It all depends on the kind on investor/trader you are. Angel / Sharekhan / Kotak all provide demat and trading accounts. All are good. You may also consider added convenience of having your bank account also. HDFC, Kotak, ICICI have 3-in-1 accounts with bank account packaged in.

  • vishnu February 26, 201311:16 am

    Thanks for your comprehensive article…i want to open an account India Infoline…i am a new i read some reviews about iifl in traderji their it was a mixed review i am not clear from them please help me out …
    1. iifl is charging their brokerage in two ways na??which is higher method? is that good..
    2. their online trading platform is of odin diet or not??

    • Naimisha February 26, 20131:36 pm

      1. Yes
      2. They have their own proprietary platform but as far as I know, you do have option of going for odin.

      • vishnu February 26, 20132:42 pm

        thanks for your reply some more to solve ..
        1. which is higher method is good for them or to us?how?
        2.i would like go with TT of that good for intra trade?Which one is having advantage madam??

        • vishnu February 28, 20139:57 am

          help me any body

          • Naimisha February 28, 201310:12 am

            There is nothing good or bad. It depends on your style and volume of trading. You should consult with IIFL representative. He will be able to guide you better.

            • vishnu February 28, 201310:58 am

              Thank you ..

  • Anup March 8, 20131:24 pm

    Hey, Great Article! Thanks!

    I am surprised you have not included Axis direct from Axis Bank. I have been using it and find it to be quite good. the site is user friendly and clean

    Their Directsaver plans offer very competitive brokerage also..check it out at ..just my point of view

    • Naimisha March 8, 20134:28 pm

      Hey Anup, there are so many brokerages with so many different offerings that it is difficult to do a comprehensive study which includes all of them. I had picked up a few based on my experience with them.

      Thanks for bringing Axis Direct to our notice 🙂

  • Priya Ranjan Prakash March 9, 201311:18 am

    Hi Naimisha, I opened my demat a/c with HDFC securities (as per ur recommendation :)). Today I got a mail from CDSL to register for easi (Electronic Access to Securities Information). I registered already, but now I am doubtful, is it totally free for individual. If you can help me, it wud be great for me.
    Thanks in advance.

  • venu May 15, 20134:27 pm

    I have opened a 3 in 1 account with icici and purchared about 100 spice jet stocks.
    for those, they charged me as below:

    Quantity: 100
    Company: SpiceJet
    total for 100 stocks: 3680
    — now comes the additional charges and taxes:
    STT- 3.34
    Transaction+SEBI Turnover charges: 0.12
    Stamp Duty- 0.37
    Brokerage+Service Tax= 39.33
    Total Fck charges: 43.15

    I sold the stock at 39.00 and again they charged abt 45.00 ruposs. THis way, they are looting people in every means.. Now I want to close 3-1 icici account and dont want to do any kinda accounts with icici. WOrst bank ever!! I made about 200 profit and out of which, i paid abt 95.00 to ICICI ..

    Please suggess me the best brokerage account/company in terms of less service and addiotional charges . Waitfing for response..

    • Naimisha May 16, 20131:10 pm

      Venu, sorry to hear about your experience 🙁

      Of all the expenses you have mentioned, some are statutory while the others are fees charged by Bank. You can’t do much about the statutory charges but you can negotiate with ICICI about brokerage rates.

      You will always get higher brokerage rate with banks and large brokers but they will also give you good service in terms of technology and transparency.

      With small brokers, you can negotiate a really low brokerage rate but then they are not very well setup in terms of service.

      You have to decide what is more important to you.

    • arya gaurav August 30, 20134:09 pm

      try RKSV account….it is awesome..for trading purpose

      • Naimisha August 31, 201311:24 am

        Thanks for sharing Arya!

  • Enush Ali August 19, 20139:11 pm

    I want to know which is the best broker and best online trading account in India.

  • Thejas August 20, 201310:23 pm

    Hi Naimisha,

    May I ask your help in choosing a brokerage firm? Im kind of hoping to be a long term investor.
    Got to pick my first demat a/c provider. 🙂

    Want latest updated stock quotes and instant execution buy/sell.
    should have security for my cash when no transactions are being made
    should not be much delay in converting shares to demat and receiving in demat a/c
    transactions should not be done by anyone without my permission or consent, want full control on my money

    After doing a lot of research, I have shortlisted below:
    Sharekhan (worried abt conversion to demat, does it take > 3days? what if i want to sell in 2days; heard issues with closing a/c)
    ICICI (concerned that site may be down in peak hours; software may no be the best)
    Angel (transfer of cash from and to banka/c, demat a/c is available? for free?)

    Could you please suggest which makes a best choice and why?


    • Naimisha August 21, 201310:31 am

      Thejas, all 3 options shortlisted by you are good ones. You can go with any of them. I’d suggest bargain on brokerage rates with all 3 and go with the one who offers you the lowest rates.

      • Thejas August 30, 201312:52 pm

        Hi Naimisha,

        We love you for your timely response 🙂

        I went ahead with Sharekhan and got the a/c opened. They said they can reduce brokerage in future based on my trade volume. The opening fee of 750 can be used as brokerage amount equivalent to 750 within the first 6 months.
        I’m only concerned about a couple of things now:
        A) Power of Attorney
        They took my signatures on two papers with stamp on them. It was the POA form of Sharekhan but all the fields were left blank.
        Is it possible that this gives the broker power to sell or buy my stocks without my permission?

        B) Nominee
        They asked me to sign on the nominee declaration form even if I did not nominate anyone, all the fields were left blank. I should have thought about striking them out.
        So I’m planning to nominate someone again now that my a/c is opened.

        Is any of the above(A/B) a problem?

        • Naimisha August 31, 201311:25 am


          A. No problem
          B. Do nominate someone. You can use a fresh form for that.

  • Ramakrishna August 29, 20137:15 pm

    i wanted to open a demat in Ambalal. whats ur opinion about ambalal, please suggest me

    • Naimisha August 30, 201310:28 am

      I have no idea about Ambalal. Can any of our readers help Ramakrishna?

  • prem September 8, 201312:42 pm


  • ramadas September 9, 20139:32 pm

    The information is not complete.I find only ICICI has all the features .Rest have to learn .The software is the best for icicidirect

    • Naimisha September 10, 201310:16 am

      Ramadas, thanks for sharing. It will help all readers if you can elaborate on how ICICI is better than others.

  • ..pd.. September 19, 20131:10 pm

    Hello ma’am,

    i am a long term investor and keep buying things on quarterly or half yearly basis. can u plz suggest me any brokerage firm which do not have high maintenance charge or “not trading fee”

    • Naimisha September 19, 20131:55 pm

      Can someone please help?

  • AV October 7, 20135:53 pm

    Have satisfactory experience with ICICIDirect.

  • bhavik October 8, 20136:30 pm

    i wanna open demat and online trading account !!!! Is marwadi firm a good option for that ?? thnx !!!! awaiting for your reply

    • Naimisha October 9, 201312:08 pm

      I did not understand which firm are you talking about.

  • Prash October 21, 20132:00 pm

    I have come across Zerodha in the recent past, and the online reviews about them also seem to be positive !! Since, I just want to do totally online delivery based trading, Zerodha seems to be a good option esp. with their flat rate of Rs.20/transaction, rather than % of the transcation amount which other brokers do…

    So, could anyone tell me if it’s a good decision to go ahead with Zerodha (trading+demat) given my requirements or should I look for other brokers ?

    @Naimisha – any help appreciated 🙂

    • Naimisha October 21, 20132:11 pm

      Prash, I am not aware of Zerodha and hence, not in a position to comment.

      Can any of our readers help?

      • prash December 4, 20135:32 pm

        Hi Naimisha,

        I went ahead and took the risk of opening the trading+demat account with not so popular broker – Zerodha. Oh boy, I don’t regret it even a bit now !!! Thought of sharing my experience for the benefit of others.

        The following are the pros and cons :

        Pros :
        1) No yearly maintenance fee for trading account.
        2) Flat rate model of Rs.20/lot or 0.01% of transaction amount (whichever is lower) is very attractive.
        3) Excellent customer support. Very quick in resolving issues.
        4) Decent trading platform – Desktop, mobile and browser versions all work.
        5) No hassles while account opening, and quick processing of documents. The trading account was opened within 2 days, and the demat within 14 days (probably due to the holidays in between).

        Cons :

        1) No free call and trade option – Rs.20/call (I don’t use it anyway).
        2) The trading platform is a bit buggy (not a show stopper), but they release updates quite often.
        3) Immediate transfer of funds to the trading account costs 9 Rs/ transfer. NEFT is free though, but not immediate.
        4) No option to subscribe to IPOs, FPOs etc I think ( I am not interested in it anyway ).

        Overall I am quite satisfied with them, and have even started to make some money (thanks to the bull market we are witnessing right now !).

        I really recommend others, who wish to to do all transactions online (like I do) to go ahead and open an account with Zerodha without a second thought.

        • Naimisha December 4, 20136:34 pm

          Thanks for sharing this with everyone. You are awesome Prash 🙂

  • Vinoth S November 8, 20133:29 am

    Hi I’m planning to open an trading account with Angel Broking since they promised for 0.1 & 0.01 as broking charges. Before had account with HDFC not satisfied with the brokerages. Went through the reviews about Angel online not satisfactory. Please do advise me the same if i can go ahead with them or any other suggestions. I’m Chennai so it will be great if the suggestions are based on that.

    • Naimisha November 8, 20131:17 pm

      Hey Vinoth, difficult to give suggestion for Chennai. Pick up any broker and search for reviews. You will certainly find some complaints about them. What you should check is the kind of complaints and the quantum.

  • Rahul Gupta November 8, 20132:57 pm


    Nice to read the article and the comments.
    Noone has talked about Geojit BNP Paribas. When I started my research today, this name came up quite many times. Any comments on that Naimisha?

    • Naimisha November 8, 20136:04 pm

      Rahul, no personal experience with Geojit BNP Paribas but yes, have heard about them. Why don’t you share what you’ve read about them?

      By the way, you’ve got a nice blog yourself 🙂

  • Manoj November 15, 20138:21 am

    Then what about geojith and jrg .

    • Naimisha November 26, 20131:04 pm

      They are also decent. Haven’t heard anything negative about them.

  • muthukumar November 15, 201310:45 am

    what according to you pros nd cons of kotak, is it suitable for a beginner with low on hand for investing(some 20-30k in a year)

    • Naimisha November 26, 20131:05 pm

      Kotak is a good option. They have a nice online platform and are very professional in their service. Amount for investment is not a problem.

  • siddharth December 5, 201312:14 pm

    Hi! Naimisha ,

    i have bank account in bank of india and punjab national bank. so can i open demat and online trading account with kotak securities or ICICI direct on accounts mentioned above?

    • Naimisha December 5, 20133:44 pm

      Yes, you can Siddharth 🙂

  • Manish February 2, 20143:15 am

    Hey Naimisha

    Thanks for the information.

    I have a question. Do these brokerages facilitate the bond trading/investing too? Can i buy corporate bonds in the secondary market through these(or any of these) brokerage firms? Could you please let me know.

    Thank you

    • Naimisha February 3, 20147:07 pm

      Yes, brokerages do allow trading in bonds in the secondary market. However, liquidity is generally low in this segment.

  • firoz September 23, 20153:46 pm

    Please advise me one best broker who allows trading in chart with low brokerage / hiddehidden costs. good management.


53 Responses to "Best broker and best online trading account in India"