(1) Trading View: I personally believe this is the best charting program that any retail investor can use. It’s my favorite service and eats up a lot of my screen time. The server side alerts are amazing for automating entries & exits, and you can even set it up to text message you. You can use & customize hundreds of indicators, dozens of chart type, or even code your own. I absolutely recommend the PRO Edition for anyone who is ready to begin trading without training wheels. The free edition works great for the greenhorns out there. Disclosure, I do have an affiliate partnership with them, but only because I am a firm believer that every retail investor should use their service.
(2) YCharts: This is another solid service but I wouldn’t call it a necessity for most. The charting functions for individual equities are not as sophisticated as Trading View. However, for those who prefer a more macro perspective or quantitative models, then this is the spot. Also, their economic data is top notch with several excellent customization options. Its a solid way to get a perspective on market health & trends.
(3) StockCharts: I mainly use this service for the blog posts & other informational services. The education material (even the free stuff) is a necessity for all burgeoning traders. I personally have not purchased a subscription, so I cannot attest to the quality of the paid services. I do feel as though the site can get a bit too spam-centric at times, and the cookies/ads slow down my browser. Trading View offers a superior free service that can be used effectively to trade without ads or limitations. With that being said, I still recommend saving StockCharts in your bookmarks as a resource for setups, patterns & other trading tips.
(4) Finviz: I love Finviz and use their screener on the daily. I love how they allow pattern & candlestick scans, and also show an actual snapshot of the chart itself. While I do not use Finviz for live charting, it is a strong resource to find end-of-day setups. The only pitfall is that the free service is overly spammy… way too many cookies. I most likely will test the premium subscription & will provide a more thorough review later on.
(5) Yahoo Finance: What can I say? They’ve been in the online investment community for decades and still fill a vital niche. Every trader should have Yahoo Finance in their bookmarks to get up-to-date news & analysis. I love how you can track institutional ownership and insider buying. The feed provides a great overview of ticker mentions, limiting the burden of using multiple sites. The charting is solid for a free service, and is more than enough for those who prefer position trading or buy-and-hold investing. Use this service (and Trading View) as your anchors, and branch out from there.