Online Brokers for Apple Mac Users
Do you want to trade stocks, options, or any other securities on an Apple (AAPL) Mac?
If you’re happy using a plain old web browser, you should be fine. But if you like to use dedicated software with all the bells and whistles, you’ll need a software platform that is Mac compatible.
Here’s a partial (and growing) list of online brokers whose software works with Macs:
Thinkorswim – TOS’ thinkDesktop works with Macs using OS X Tiger 10.4 or higher and having 1 gig of RAM. Power users, which are defined as “users who watch multiple charts at once, use our custom scripting language or perform complex technical analysis” shoulduse OS X 10.5 or higher, and 2 gigs of RAM. I’m now running thinkDesktop on a 2008 Macbook and I like it. I like it a lot!
OptionsXpress – According to an optionsXpress customer service rep, the company’s snazzy Xtend 2 software is Mac compatible. I’m a big fan of thinkDesktop but Xtend 2 looks pretty awesome from a visual standpoint.
E*TRADE - The company’s Power E*TRADE Pro software is compatible with OS X 10.4 or higher, with 10.5 recommended as a minimum. On the hardware side, E*TRADE recommends a 1.4 GHz G4 process or faster, and a gig of RAM.
Charles Schwab – UPDATED – Schwab’s StreetSmart Pro software is not Mac compatible. Thank you to reader Travi for pointing this out. Schwab’s web stuff (as with other brokers), does work though.
My General Advice - Trading applications can be pretty hard on your system, especially if you do a lot at once with charts, quote screens, and things like that. This is especially true during periods of high trading volume and if you run a lot of other applications at once (web browsers, iTunes, etc.).
Therefore, I highly recommend that you max our your RAM. Like buying a good mouse, buying memory is a VERY cheap way to boost your productivity in a big way.
And are you wondering where you should buy a Mac? Here’s why you should shop for Apple on Amazon.