Robinhood is one of the fastest growing free investment platforms that also supports stock exchange trading. You can use it to trade on other asset classes like ETFs and Cryptocurrency. Robinhood’s appeal is that it has a new trading model that allows its users to trade for free or at low rates.
It has a wide variety of offers to its users, including the coveted Gold level with its premium features. You can use one of these premium accounts to margin trade as well.
The inventors of this trading platform, Vladimir Tenev, and Baiju Bhat, used the Apple platform to launch it in 2013. Also, they have seen their work migrate to other platforms like android and IOS. Therefore, you can use it in the comfort of your phones, tablet, and laptops. Over the years, this platform has seen exponential growth overtaking the significant players in the e-trade field. Robinhood has gained significant popularity in the US, and slowly people across the globe have become interested in this platform.
Foreign investors cannot currently take advantage of Robinhood. Users must be residing legally within the U.S. and have a functional social security number in order to obtain access. Citizens of a few other countries may enjoy this platform’s benefits, like the United Kingdom and Australia.
Requirements To Use Robinhood
Anyone that wishes to explore their luck on the Robinhood platform must meet some requirements. First of all, you have to be at least 18 years of age or older. Plus, you must be residing within the U.S and have a functional social security number. A Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) will not serve as a replacement for a Social Security Number.
You must become a permanent resident of the U.S or a valid Visa holder. The United States of America’s government does not allow the Office of Foreign Asset Control countries’ citizens to trade on this platform. However, you can exploit this option if you have a permanent resident card and a valid U.S. passport.
Using Robinhood as a Non-Citizen
Non-citizens must go through a few extra hoops in order to use Robinhood. Users can obtain access to the platform if they are on a temporary visa or as a permanent resident, as long as they have a valid social security number.
Some people can actually find a way to illegally join the platform. However, If you find your way in, know that you will be committing financial crimes against the U.S government, and you are liable to get jail terms and hefty fines.
Is It Possible to Use Robinhood Outside the U.S.?
If you have a valid account on Robinhood, you can enjoy its usage in all countries, with a few exceptions. Some of the countries its use will immediately fail include Crimea in Ukraine, North Korea, Cuba, and Iran. Any attempts to access your account within these areas may lead to your account getting strict restrictions.
The U.S government has made sanctions on such sites, and therefore the Office of Foreign Assets Control does not allow you to trade in such areas.
Can You Buy International Stocks in Robinhood?
Over the years, many Robinhood users have been urging the company to introduce foreign exchange items to them. They recently decided to introduce America Depository Receipts, also known as ADRs, on their platform. Plus, they have gone ahead to capture the Canadian and Israeli stock exchange for their users.
The management also allows you to trade on other various cryptocurrencies via the Robinhood Crypto, a separate account. This is an option that is also currently available on the Robinhood platform.
Can Foreigners Buy Stocks Using Other Methods?
There are various platforms that foreign investors can use to buy stocks. Some of these platforms include M1 Finance, Stash, Tradestation, Betterment, and others. As a non-citizen, you can explore other available venues that can accommodate you. Trading on the U.S stock exchange is not only for permanent residents.
Furthermore, there are indeed regulations that seek to prevent exploitation. However, there no specific laws that bar non-citizens from indulging themselves and exploring their chances here. So, as a foreign investor, you should register and work with a reputable broker. By doing so, you will protect yourself from people that may seek to exploit your disadvantage of being a non-citizen.
It is wise to choose a broker based in the U.S and has a vast knowledge of international investments. Also, they should show a sense of understanding of the various laws and practices that are involved. Plus, you should always read up on the brokerage firm and learn about their relationship with international investors.
Trading on the Robinhood platform seems exciting even though it does not accommodate foreigners wholly. Over time, the managers will find a way to be inclusive and allow the app to be used by anyone who wishes to trade. However, it would help if you investigated the other available methods and platforms that can accommodate you for the time being.
You should also remember that you should learn more about them when you are using these other platforms. Some of them may not protect your interest and leave you open to exploitation and even misuse of your personal information.