eToro is a social trading platform which aims to make investing accessible for everyone, including students. But how easy is it to navigate, and can you actually make any money? Here’s our guide to eToro for students.
What you need to know in a nutshell
The platform launched in 2005 and is a completely safe and regulated trading platform with 25 million regular users in more than 140 countries. All users get access to a virtual account with $100,000 which makes it the perfect way for beginners to try out trading without risking any of their own hard-earned cash at first.
When you open a virtual account, you get free training where you can play around and learn everything you need to know about how to get the best out of eToro. We’d recommend you always try a demo account to practice what you’ve learned at first before investing any real money.
eToro for students-navigating the platform
Home section– think of this like a newsfeed where you can see what the traders you follow have been doing and saying.
Watchlist section– this is where you can organise the markets or people you’re interested in into lists so you can keep track.
Portfolio section-here you can find all your open trades and monitor how your stocks are performing.
Discover section-this is the hub where you can research and trade in available markets, such as crypto, commodities, and stocks. The Discover section is where you’ll also find the CopyTrader feature. This allows you to copy or follow other traders and see their trading history. Spotted a savvy traders who seems to know their stuff? In CopyTrader, you can invest and copy their trades.
How to invest with eToro
Copy other good traders
This is the easiest way to invest on eToro. When you copy another traders, every trade they make is opened and sold in your account too. Your return rate will be the same as they get, but ultimately, you decide the funds you allocate to them.
Remember that the most copied people are not necessarily the best traders. Many people on eToro are beginners too and aren’t exactly going to be a whizz at trading.
Also, a good thing to remember is not getting hung up on making a profit every week or every month. Trading is a medium to long-term game and if you’re patient, your gains should improve over time. So how can you find traders to copy?
Click on ‘discover’ on the sidebar. Scroll down to ‘CopyTrader’ then click ‘view all.’ This will bring up a page of the most popular investors and their stats. Remember that popular doesn’t equal best, so dig a little deeper to find out if the person is worth copying. Risk level is colour-coded and the range goes from green (safe, low-risk, low-return) to yellow, orange, red, and then to black which is very high risk.
To copy a trader, open their profile and click on the green ‘Copy’ button.
Then you’ll be asked to enter an amount with which to copy a trader. At this stage, you’ll be offered some really helpful information including preventing heavy losses if your chosen trader’s investments drop sharply. You can click on ‘edit’ which allows you to set the level of drop at which your account will stop copying them and sell assets.
Start buying and selling on eToro for students
Once you feel like you know what you’re doing, it’s time to start thinking about trading yourself. Do your research, keep up with the news (the Financial Times is great), and only invest in companies you think can resist sudden shocks in the market. When you’re ready, here’s how to get started:
- Click on ‘Discover’, then ‘Stocks’.
- Choose an industry, for example ‘Tech’.
- You will see all the tech stocks, their prices, and any changes over the past 24hrs.
Let’s say you want to buy $10 worth of Microsoft Stock. $10 is the minimum amount you can trade.
Click on ‘MSFT’ (the abbreviation used on the stock exchange). You’ll be able to see the company’s performance and any insights.
To invest, click on ‘Invest’ in the top right corner.
Pay attention to the ‘Leverage’ figure. This figure indicates how much you can multiply any gains and losses by, for example X1 is just buying the stock. With X2, any movement is doubled, whether it’s a gain or a loss.
Click ‘Set Order’ to trade. You have now invested in Microsoft.
Keep an eye on your performance in the ‘portfolio’ section.
Creating an account
To sign up for eToro for students:
- Sign up for eToro here. Fill in the short form and choose a username. You’ll then be asked to verify your email address.
- Complete your profile. Here, you need to fill in some personal details and answer questions on your trading experience.
- Deposit funds. Click ‘Continue to deposit’. Now you’ll be able to add funds (minimum is $10.)
Are there any other costs involved with eToro?
Yes, eToro charges a small fee on positions. This is usually the small difference between the buy and sell price that brokers offer. You’ll be charged this when you sell or close a position. You can avoid paying too many spread fees by making sure you don’t over-trade.
You’ll also be charged a flat $5 fee for transferring funds out of your account.