AJ Bell YouInvest Broker Review - Pros and Cons

06 April 2023


  • Shares, ETFs. funds and investments trusts negotiable
  • ISA and Junior ISA available
  • Six growth portfolios available of varying risk levels
  • CFDs and crypto trading not available

pros Pros:

  • No setup, cash withdrawal or account closure fees
  • Monthly share dealing for £1.50 per trade
  • Account fees remain competitive as your portfolio grows
  • Highly awarded as best UK broker in 2021 & 2022

pros Cons:

  • Web platform not suitable for advanced technical analysis
  • Third-party support for charting or trading software is unavailable
  • Forex and leveraged CFD products not offered
Fees and Costs:
Products and Markets:
Trading platform:
Tax regime:
Ease of use
Overall rating

AJ Bell YouInvest review

AJ Bell YouInvest is a leading UK online brokerage firm offering share dealing, funds and currency transactions to retail investors. 

Launched in 1995 as one of the UK’s first discount brokers, AJ Bell’s YouInvest online platform has since attracted over 398,000 clients and £75 billion of assets. It now employs almost 1,000 staff and is ranked as the second or third largest UK broker on several measures.

In 2018, AJ Bell’s shares were admitted to trading on the London Stock Exchange. Due to its size and maturity, AJ Bell Plc is a member of the FTSE 250 index of large-cap companies.

The firm is fully authorised and regulated in the UK by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The YouInvest platform trades through its subsidiary AJ Bell Securities Limited, which is listed on the FCA register of authorised firms with reference: 155593).

As an FCA-authorised broker, AJ Bell YouInvest clients are covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme, which may cover £85,000 of losses if AJ Bell became insolvent. However, the firm also ring-fences client assets from its own, which limits the risk of losses in the event that AJ Bell ceases to trade.

In this expansive review, we’ll share our opinion and rating on AJ Bell YouInvest as an investment platform.


AJ Bell YouInvest is fully authorised to provide brokerage services to UK retail investors by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). 

The YouInvest service is provided through AJ Bell Securities Limited, which is listed on the public FCA register of authorised firms as firm #155593.

The regulated status of AJ Bell affords investors with several protections and assurances; namely the right to take complaints to the Financial Ombudsman Service, and access to the Financial Services Compensation Scheme, known as FSCS.

FSCS protection is completely free and is automatically extended to all UK investors who deposit money with an authorised bank, insurance or investment firm. The scheme is designed to compensate investors for up to £85,000 if they lose monies as a result of their service provider collapsing or ceasing to trade. The FSCS was established in 2001 and has successfully compensated victims of several corporate failures that occurred during the 2007 - 2009 financial crisis. 

The £85,000 limit is available on a per person, per institution basis. This means that a couple with individual accounts at the same financial institution would each receive up to £85,000 of cover.

AJ Bell YouInvest also commits to applying best practice client money processes. This includes ring-fencing client assets from its own business assets. This type of segregation should limit the risk of losses to investors in the event that AJ Bell Plc ceases to trade. 

The publicly available financial statements of AJ Bell Plc underline the safety of the firm. Its latest balance sheet indicates a strong financial position and AJ Bell continues to enjoy year-on-year growth in its core business. On 31 December 2021, the firm reported net assets of £130.7m, and in the year 31 December 2021, it generated £47.7m in cash from operating activities. The firm is not reliant upon external financing or bonds to remain liquid and solvent.

AJ Bell Account

AJ Bell YouInvest offers a range of accounts to suit different investor profiles and confer different tax advantages. The number of account types to choose from is industry-leading.

It offers two standard accounts:

  • Dealing account (main brokerage account)
  • Cash savings hub (cash-only)

AJ Bell also offers the complete range of tax-friendly ISA and pension accounts for adults and juniors:

  • Stocks & shares ISA
  • Lifetime stocks & shares ISA
  • Self-Invested Personal Pension (SIPP)
  • Junior ISA
  • Junior Self-Invested Personal Pension (SIPP)

Standard dealing accounts are subject to income tax and capital gains tax and are accessible to all UK residents.

ISA accounts are a tax-efficient product that completely exempts the assets within from income tax and capital gains tax. This makes them a ‘no-brainer’ for most investors looking to open a trading account with AJ Bell. 

ISAs do carry some restrictions which means they may not be suitable for everyone. An investor may only open one of each type of ISA account each year across all providers. Investors may only deposit up to £20,000 into a stocks & shares or cash ISA each year, and this ISA allowance is shared across any other ISA accounts an investor may have. 

In practice, these rules mean that wealthier investors with over £20,000 to invest annually will deposit the first £20,000 into an ISA product, and use a general dealing account or a pension account to invest the remainder of their funds.


AJ Bell minimum deposit

To open an AJ Bell dealing account or stocks and shares ISA you’ll need to deposit a lump of £500 or set up a regular investing direct debit of at least £25 per month.


AJ Bell demo account

AJ Bell does not currently offer a demo account or other trading features that would allow investors to experience their platform without investing real money.

Author of the review:

Alfredo de Cristofaro
Graduated in Economics of Financial Intermediaries, after having worked for several years at one of the main financial brokers in Europe, he decided to make available to investors the knowledge gained over the years. On QualeBroker.com he's responsible of reviewing the stockbrokers, making sure that the highest standards of safety and transparency are guaranteed.
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