Kotak Securities vs Zerodha

Kotak Securities was founded in 1994 by the leading Indian bank Kotak Mahindra. In the two decades, the platform amassed thousands of customers. KS might be an old platform, but Zerodha is currently the leading online brokerage firm. It has a vast userbase.

Is Zerodha better than Kotak Securities or vice versa? Which platform is better and more affordable? What are the AMC charges of the two platforms? What are the similarities and differences between Zerodha and Kotak Securities? Let’s find it out!

Zerodha vs Kotak Securities

Account opening process and charges

Both the trading platforms let users trade currencies, derivatives, equities, and commodities. Zerodha charges a one-time account opening fee of Rs 200. You won’t be charged a dime for opening an account with Kotak Securities. KS charges Rs 600 annual maintenance.

When you fill out and submit the account opening form on Zerodha, your application will be processed within two days. On KS, the account application would be processed within a few hours. I applied for a KS account at 5 am. I got a message from the KS KYC verification team within 3 hours.

When your Zerodha account is ready, you can start trading straightaway. You can also start trading immediately on Kotak Securities, but within a day or two of your account getting activated, you’ll receive a mail from KS stating that we haven’t submitted the POA document yet. POA, aka power of attorney, is a document that you must mail to the head office of Kotak Securities after taking its printout and filling it, or submit the same to the nearest Kotak Securities branch office. In our case, the company arranged an executive to do the needful.

Zerodha is not owned by any bank. It doesn’t own a bank as well, nor has the company tied up with any bank. It doesn’t support 3-in-1 accounts. Kotak Securities is the subsidiary of one of the leading Indian banks i.e. Kotak Mahindra bank, and they’ve also joined hands with some PSU banks and IndusInd bank to offer a 3-in-1 trading account. What is the benefit of 3-in-1 accounts? Transferring money to the Demat account and transferring money from the Demat account to the bank account is hassle-free if you have got a 3-in-1 trading account.

Pricing

When you place an order of Zerodha, you’ll be charged 20 Rs brokerage regardless of the order type i.e. every order on Zerodha costs 20 Rs. Kotak Securities has interesting pricing. The firm charges 20 Rs per order for carry forward or delivery trades. You won’t have to pay any brokerage if you’re an intraday trader and don’t carry positions if you’re using Kotak Securities.

KS has launched four subscription plans – No Brokerage, Trade Free, Trade Free Max, and Dealer Assisted plan. The No Brokerage plan is available only to users aged under 30, and the plan’s validity is two years. After two years, this plan would be upgraded to Trade Free plan. The subscription fee of the No Brokerage plan is 499 + GST. ZD has a single plan only – the one in which you’ll be paying 20 Rs brokerage for every order.

User interface

Kotak Securities and Zerodha have a nice-looking user interface. On the left side, Zerodha boasts a sidebar with 7 watchlists. KS flaunts the watchlist on the right side of the screen. You can sort the instruments in the watchlist by various conditions in ZD, but you cannot do so in KS. ZD shows the funds, margin in use, upcoming IPOs, etc, on the dashboard page. If you’ve bought stocks, you can also find the stocks on the dashboard page.

Features

2FA: Two-factor authentication is enabled by default in KS. A user can sign in only if they enter an OTP sent to the user’s email address and phone. The OTP is nothing but a four digit number.

Trading calls: According to Kotak Securities, they have a dedicated team of experts that find buying opportunities in the stock market. The stocks the team shortlisted are displayed in the Trading Calls section of the dashboard. Zerodha doesn’t offer such a feature. The trading calls section of Kotak Securities shows the stock name, its entry/exit price, and a search box to find the stock name.

GTT: This feature is available in Zerodha only. GTT is an order in which you can enter and exit a position at your chosen price. You can create a GTT even after taking a position. GTT is a good alternative to the stop loss limit orders, which is confusing. Kotak Securities doesn’t support GTT orders but enables you to create and place cover orders and stop loss limit orders.

Reports: Both the online trading platforms have a sophisticated reporting system. You can see your trades and make the platforms generate a tax profit and loss report.

Charts

All traders refer to charts before placing an order. Zerodha has integrated the premium version of TradingView with their site. You can view two charts side by side or in a layout of your choice. You must be logged in to Zerodha to access the charts. If you don’t do so, the charts won’t function. Like Zerodha, Kotak Securities employs TradingView charting system.

Our experience with the two platforms

We have never encountered any issues while using Zerodha. While using KS, we faced an issue related to the stock price. The price of ITC was 307 according to charts, but the order was placed at Rs 309. Due to this reason, we suffered a loss of 600 Rs. We faced another issue related to the power of attorney document. Kotak Securities had shipped the POA document through a courier company. The courier company sent an SMS regarding the same. On the day the document was supposed to be delivered, the courier company sent an SMS explaining why the document wasn’t delivered. I took a printout of the document, filled it, and submitted it to a Kotak Securities office located 20 kilometers from my place.

These were the major differences between Zerodha and Kotak Securities.

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