If you’re considering investing, you’ll need a good brokerage or trading platform. However, many new investors also want to keep their trading costs low. Fortunately, many of today’s platforms offer low or no trading commission.
The main difference between Public.com and Moomoo is that Public.com is better suited for new investors, while more experienced traders are likely to appreciate Moomoo.
Public.com features a sleek, user-friendly interface that’s clean and intuitive. However, that comes at the expense of tools and data. Moomoo offers an impressive collection of tools and data that both new investors and experienced traders will love.
Join Public to get up to $300 of free stock when you make a deposit.*
Join Moomoo and get up to 15 free stocks worth up to $30,000 total.
The Public.com Basics
Public.com has been operating since 2018 but originally used the name Matador. Public.com offers commission-free trades of U.S. stocks and exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and has a very friendly user interface.
However, its collaboration functionality makes Public a little different from other trading platforms. It is almost a hybrid of a trading platform and social media network. You can connect with other investors and benefit from more advanced traders’ experience and knowledge.
When you log in, you can check on your trades, chat with other investors, share strategies, and follow your fellow investors. There are no trade commissions on stocks and ETFs or minimum investments. Everything about the platform is intended to make investing more accessible to the average person.
Public.com offers fractional shares so anyone can start investing. You'll love the social aspect that makes it possible to connect with other investors. Get a free stock slice worth up to $300 when you open an account through our link.
- Commission-free trades of stocks and ETFs
- Buy and sell 27 different cryptocurrencies
- Fractional shares
- Access to alternative investors
- High-yield Treasury accounts
- Easy to use and beginner-friendly
- Connect with a supportive community of investors
- "Themes" help you to find investments that interest you
The Moomoo Basics
Moomoo is an integrated trading app launched in 2019 by Moomoo Financial Inc., an innovative brokerage based in Palo Alto, CA. Its parent company, Futu Holdings Ltd, has millions of users worldwide and is listed on Nasdaq as FUTU.
Like Public.com, Moomoo also offers commission-free trading of stocks and ETFs. However, Moomoo also offers options and American Depository Receipts (ADRs), which allow Americans to invest in foreign companies. Platform users can also trade stocks on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
Moomoo has some innovative tools (this is the standout feature of the platform) that more experienced traders are likely to appreciate. We’ll cover these tools in more detail later in the article.
Public.com has a wide selection of over 5,000 stocks and ETFs. You can search for specific companies or use the themes or categories to search for your next trade. The themes make it easier to build your portfolio according to your interests, such as Green Power or Plant-Based Movement (there are 40 themes available).
You can invest in some or all of the companies within each theme. When you click on a company, you’ll see a detailed history, including user comments and trends.
Public.com also offers fractional shares. These are essentially slices of shares or funds, making investing easier in companies with higher share prices easier.
If you’re interested in a company like Amazon or Google, the share price can be high. Unless you have a large investment fund, you may struggle to purchase shares. However, fractional shares allow you to buy a smaller piece of the pie.
Fractional shares can also help you to put every dollar of your investment fund to work since you can buy a specific dollar amount rather than several shares. You don’t have to wait until you have $500 or $1,000 to invest.
Public.com could also be a good choice for you if you’re interested in cryptocurrency. Public offers more than 25 cryptocurrencies, including popular coins such as Bitcoin, Dogecoin, and Ethereum.
Moomoo offers over 11,000 U.S. stocks, ETFs, and OTC stocks, as well as access to the Hong Kong stock market, giving you a broader reach than what’s offered by Public.com. However, a significant drawback of Moomoo is that the platform does not currently support fractional shares.
Currently, Moomoo does not offer cryptocurrency trading.
Public.com was created to make trading readily accessible to the public. So, the platform has a user-friendly interface that’s intuitive even for new investors.
However, Public.com also has some excellent tools for more experienced traders. The platform functionality is great, making it easy to search for stocks via the themes or categories quickly.
You can click on specific companies to access a details screen to help you make an investment decision. There’s also a news feed on the home page. It’s simple to send messages, follow other platform users, build chat groups, and join discussions.
Compared to apps like Public and Robinhood, which prioritize ease of use over advanced tools, Moomoo has chosen a different approach that may not be beginner-friendly. The app is packed with many visualized data analytic tools about stocks and the market.
These tools are great for performing in-depth research, but there’s a learning curve to familiarize yourself with all the functions. If you’re quite tech savvy or an experienced trader, you should find the tools quite easy to use. But if you’re completely new, you may feel a little overwhelmed getting started.
Although both platforms may appear very similar on paper, some key features separate Public and Moomoo.
- Social Collaboration: One of the most significant features of Public is its social collaboration. On this platform, you can connect with other investors to follow trades, see their recent activity, and even chat to discuss strategies. There’s a feed of comments and actions on the main home page, so you can enjoy a sense of community. This creates an almost Facebook-like experience, so you can socialize and get feedback and opinions on potential strategies from more experienced traders.
- DRIP: Dividend Reinvestment Plans automatically allow you to invest dividends earned by your portfolio. Essentially, it’s like compound interest on your bank account balance. If you have stocks that pay dividends, you can automatically use any dividends to supplement your investment fund. This is an optional feature, but it’s a nice way to get your investment dollars to grow faster.
- Fractional Shares: Public.com offers the opportunity to purchase fractional shares of stocks and funds, which eliminates the financial barrier for many investors. Fractional shares allow you to access high-profile brands whose shares can run thousands of dollars each. It also allows you to put every dollar of your investment fund to work since you can buy full and fractional shares rather than waiting until you have enough for a full share.
- Access to Crypto: Public has approximately 25 cryptocurrencies on its platform, allowing its customers to trade crypto or use various coins to diversify their portfolios.
- Access to U.S and Asian Markets: Moomoo clients can trade on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, China A-Shares, and the U.S. markets.
- Moomoo Community: While the social features are not as extensive as what Public.com offers, Moomoo does have millions of active users that share insights and provide opinions on strategies and trades. This creates a sense of community that traders of all experience levels can appreciate.
- Full Extended Trading Hours: Moomoo offers pre and after-hours trading for US stocks. You can jump in and out of position as soon as the news comes out from 4 AM to 8 PM EST.
- Technical Data and Charting: Unlike Public.com, which has basic research information, Moomoo offers financial reports, capital flow trends, and third-party ratings to help you make investment decisions. There are several charting options with several technical indicators. You can even access Level 2 Market Data with real-time quotes and short selling details, which is normally a paid extra or subscription service on other trading platforms.
- Paper Trading: Novices investors who don’t feel comfortable trading with real money can use Moomoo’s paper trading to simulate trading stocks, options, and even futures. Traders can use Moomoo’s advanced tools to test their trading strategy without worrying about losing money.
- Margin Trading: Moomoo offers margin trading with a flat commission rate. This allows you to leverage your portfolio to gain additional funds to make more trades. (Not recommended for beginners due to high risk.)
There’s little to separate the platforms in this area of the Public.com vs. Moomoo comparison. Both charge no trading commissions on stocks and ETFs**. There may be some incidental fees, such as for wire transfers, paper statements, or returned payments, but this is the case with any brokerage or platform.
Public.com offers cryptocurrency trading, but this is subject to a markup of approximately 1% to 2% (which is competitive with other platforms that offer crypto trading).
In 2022, Public.com launched a Premium account option. For a fee of $10 per month, Premium users get access to advanced data, expert insights, and VIP support. All the other features and functionality covered in this article are available for users with a free account.
Moomoo offers margin accounts, which are subject to a flat commission rate.
Both platforms take security seriously. Both companies are SIPC (Securities Investor Protection Corp) members. This provides coverage for up to $500,000 if the brokerage fails and you lose your assets. Both platforms also have bank-level security, including SSL encryption and other measures to ensure that your personal details remain secure.
No trading platform or brokerage is right for everyone. It’s important to know the benefits and potential flaws before deciding which is best for you.
- User-Friendly Interface: Using the Public.com app is a breeze and a pleasant experience thanks to excellent design.
- Crypto Trading: Public.com provides access to approximately 25 cryptocurrencies, which may appeal to those who want to trade crypto or diversify their portfolio with various coins.
- Fractional Shares: If you’re looking at high-profile companies, the price of one share can run to hundreds or thousands of dollars, making them out of reach for many investors. However, fractional shares allow you to buy slices of a share, so you can still access those companies.
- DRIP: Public has an optional Dividend Reinvestment plan feature, allowing you to take advantage of putting your dividends to work.
- Fully Functional Social Platform: Public has chat functions, an activity feed, and other social features that create a nice sense of community and support. Whether you’re a new investor looking for advice from a more experienced investor or simply want to discuss strategies with your peers, you can do this within the platform.
- Limited Research: Public does have some basic company information, but the overall research tools are very limited. If you prefer to conduct in-depth research before making an investment decision, you’ll need to upgrade to a Premium account.
- Limited Support: Public does not offer phone support. There is email and chat support, but the live human chat is only available from 9 am to 5 pm ET, Monday through Friday.
- No Day Trading: Although day trading is strictly a strategy for the more experienced investor, if you want to give it a go, you’ll need to consider another platform, as Public.com does not offer this feature.
- Exclusive Research Tools: Moomoo has a range of exclusive tools, including Stock Compare, Institutional Tracking, AI monitoring, and more. There are also third-party analyst ratings and free Level 2 data to help users track market opportunities.
- Learning Tools and Resources: This platform also has a decent selection of learning tools and resources. Whether you’re new to trading or a more experienced investor, you’ll find useful articles and resources to help you.
- News and Updates: With Moomoo, investors can keep abreast of Wall Street anytime. Moomoo offers premium news feeds from famous financial media such as CNBC and Dow Jones Newswires. And feeds can be customized based on positions and calendars.
- More Complicated Interface: The tradeoff of having access to more tools and data is that the user interface is not as clean or simple. New investors may experience a bit of a learning curve.
- No Fractional Shares: Currently, Moomoo doesn’t support fractional shares, which can limit your buying options.
- No Crypto: Moomoo currently does not offer cryptocurrency trading.
Public.com is an excellent option for new investors interested in self-directed trading, particularly crypto and fractional shares. You can benefit from the experience of more established traders and discuss your strategy ideas within the Public community. However, the research tools included with a free account are quite limited.
On the other hand, Moomoo is likely to appeal to those who feel confident performing their own in-depth research. Moomoo has an extensive selection of research tools and resources, including its own community and learning center.
If you’re an active trader, you’re likely to appreciate the comprehensive charting and Level 2 market data, which is often a paid extra with other platforms. While the learning curve may be steeper with Moomoo, those keen on intensive research should find Moomoo more appealing than Public.com
Join Public to get up to $300 of free stock when you make a deposit.*
Join Moomoo and get up to 15 free stocks worth up to $30,000 total.
*Public.com offer valid for U.S. residents 18+ and subject to account approval. This is not a recommendation. You can lose money with any investment. Open To The Public Investing is a member of FINRA & SIPC. Regulatory and firm fees apply. New customers receive free stock with value $3-300; 0.3% receive the max value. Cryptocurrency trading provided by Apex Crypto LLC (NMLS ID 1828849). Apex Crypto is licensed to engage in virtual currency business activity by the New York State Department of Financial Services. See Public.com/disclosures/
**At Public, Commission-free trading of stocks and ETFs refers to $0 commissions for Open to the Public Investing self-directed individual cash brokerage accounts that trade the U.S.-listed, registered securities electronically during Regular Trading Hours.