Cryptocurrency trading platform FTX is launching a stock trading platform called FTX Stocks that will allow investors to trade cryptocurrencies alongside stocks, as it aims to offer investors a full suite of asset class options in a one-stop investment shop.
“Our goal is to offer a holistic investing service for our customers across all asset classes,” said FTX U.S. President Brett Harrison. “With the launch of FTX Stocks, we have created a single integrated platform for retail investors to easily trade crypto, NFTs, and traditional stock offerings.”
FTX is launching the platform in a private beta phase for select U.S. customers chosen from a waitlist first. Available through the U.S. trading app that already provides crypto trading, hundreds of stocks and ETFs will be available for investment, including the ability to invest in fractions of shares.
Like most online brokerage firms, trades will be commission free. In addition, users will not be charged a fee for brokerage accounts and there are no minimum balances required. Customers will be able to fund their accounts with stablecoins backed by fiat currencies like Circle’s USDC through a partnership with the FTX US crypto exchange or dollars.
FTX will initially route all orders through Nasdaq, and will not receive any payment for order flow – a controversial practice of routing customer orders to high-speed traders in exchange for cash. FTX is taking a different strategy than the popular stock trading app Robinhood, which relies on payment for order flow, and has found itself in the crosshairs of the Securities and Exchange Commission in the midst of meme stock trading involving GameStop and other names.
FTX’s move comes after it invested in the New York-based stock exchange, IEX, this spring and after FTX Cofounder and Chief Executive Sam Bankman-Fried bought a stake in trading-app Robinhood, which has already offered trading in crypto alongside stocks through its own app.