12 Top laptops for Trading in 2023

As a trader, you understand that having the right tools is the key to success. And by tools I don't mean fancy phones and a Bloomberg terminal. I'm talking about your main asset: the laptop that you'll be monitoring the markets with. It is the one thing that will be with you, side-by-side as you try to become a better, more profitable trader.

That's why I wrote this guide to help you pick the best laptop for trading. Instead of relying on outdated reviews, I'll be providing actual, relevant information on what makes a great laptop for trading. I'll break down the processor, display, memory, and other specs and help you figure out what specs to look for when shopping for the ultimate trading laptop. After all, trading involves more than just hitting 'buy' and 'sell'. To maximize your potential, you need to know your tools.

And that's exactly what we'll be discussing in this guide. Are you ready? Let's go!

Processor Power

laptops

As the laptop market has evolved over the past few years, it's become increasingly important to consider the right processor when looking for a laptop to use for trading stocks. The right processor is critical, as it can be the difference between success and failure in a competitive market.

Traders use a wide range of applications, from stock trading platforms to web browsers and video editors. As such, you'll want a laptop with plenty of power to handle the load, and the CPU is the most important component in any trading laptop. However, it's not the only one – the graphics card and RAM are also critical, and should be prioritized after the CPU, especially if you're using a dedicated GPU for trading stocks.

Apple has released MacBooks with their own ARM-based M1, M1 Pro, M1 Max and M2 system-on-chip modules. They offer exceptional single-core performance and battery life, but are not suitable for trading due to the closed nature of macOS. Similarly, while workstations are great for gaming and professional content creation, they aren't recommended for trading due to their hefty price tag and lack of portability.

Intel's 12th generation and AMD's 6th generation CPUs are currently the best options in terms of raw performance, thermals and power consumption. Intel's silicon chips have adopted a hybrid performance/efficiency core design, based on big.LITTLE technology, and AMD's Ryzen models offer good battery life in a PC laptop.

To help you decide on the right processor for trading, I've put together a table of recommended processors by price range:

Price Range Processor Model
Budget i5-10500H
Recommended i5-11400H
High-end i9-11900H

Graphics Power

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laptops

In the laptop GPU market, Nvidia continues to dominate. Their latest notebook cards are in RTX 30 series such as RTX 3070 Ti, and they recently released a few RTX 40 series cards, although these are not yet available on laptops (expected in 2023). Unfortunately, Nvidia has discontinued the Max-Q label for its RTX graphics cards, meaning an exact GPU wattage is now determined by a laptop manufacturer (OEM). This results in a wide variance in graphics performance even in laptops with the same GPU chipset.

If you're looking for a MacBook for trading, there's no need to get a dedicated GPU – and a dedicated GPU is not strictly necessary for trading either, although it can be helpful if you're using machine learning models or doing any kind of data science work.

When comparing different graphics cards, I use 3DMark scores because they're a good proxy for real-world gaming performance. Nvidia's graphics card naming convention is pretty straightforward – the higher the series, the more powerful the card. An "M" in front of an "XT" suffix on a card indicates a more powerful version of the chip (but it's not as efficient). And keep in mind that if you're looking for a high-end gaming laptop, expect it to be on the heavy side due to all those components packed inside it.

In terms of what I recommend when it comes to graphics cards for trading laptops, here's a breakdown of the best options at various budgets:

Minimum
  • GeForce GTX 1650
Recommended
  • GeForce RTX 3050
High-end
  • GeForce RTX 3050 Ti

Upgrading RAM

When it comes to laptops for trading, the most important hardware component to consider is the RAM. This is because trading requires a lot of multitasking and memory intensive applications such as data analysis, trading platforms, and large trading databases. Fortunately, RAM is a relatively simple component to understand. You just need enough to ensure that your system can handle the load you're putting on it.

Most mid-range laptops come with 16 GB of RAM and high-end – 32 GB or more. Latest-gen Intel and AMD CPUs support DDR4 and DDR5, though DDR5 is still quite expensive and needs time to mature as a technology.

The minimum RAM recommendation for trading laptops is 8 GB, however, if you're looking for a mid-range laptop, I'd recommend going with 16 GB as a safe bet. For high-end laptops, you'll want to look for at least 32 GB. DDR5 vs DDR4 – there's no reason to get DDR5 unless you're going for a high-end laptop. If you're looking for an entry-level or mid-range laptop, go with DDR4 since it's nearly as fast and costs less.

Finally, some laptops come with soldered RAM modules, so upgrading them is not an option if you need more than the stock amount. However, some laptops allow for upgradeable memory modules, which is always preferable if possible.

Below is an overview of what to expect at each price bracket:

Budget Laptops (under $500)
  • 8GB RAM
  • DDR4
Mid-Range Laptops ($500-$1,000)
  • 16GB RAM
  • DDR4/DDR5
High-End Laptops ($1,000+)
  • 32GB RAM or more
  • DDR5

FAQ

What is the best laptop for trading?

Choosing the best laptop for trading depends on your budget and needs. A laptop with a minimum of 8GB RAM, a GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card, and an Intel i5-10500H processor is suitable for most day traders. For the maximum performance, we recommend laptops with 32GB RAM, a GeForce RTX 3050 Ti GPU, and an Intel i9-11900H processor.

What laptop specs do I need for trading?

For trading, you need at least 8GB RAM, a GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card, and an Intel i5-10500H processor. These specs are suitable for most day traders. If you're looking for maximum performance, 32GB RAM, a GeForce RTX 3050 Ti GPU, and an Intel i9-11900H processor should do the trick.

How to choose a laptop for trading?

Choosing a laptop for trading is all about finding the right balance between your budget and needs. Start by assessing the amount of RAM and graphics card you need, and then choose a processor that meets your requirements. Refer to our recommendations table to get a better idea of what's available in the market.

What laptop is best for day trading?

Day traders typically require a laptop with a minimum of 8GB RAM, a GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card, and an Intel i5-10500H processor. The ASUS Zenbook 13 UX325EA-EH71 is our recommendation in this price range. For maximum performance, we recommend laptops with 32GB RAM, a GeForce RTX 3050 Ti GPU, and an Intel i9-11900H processor.

Does a laptop need a GPU for trading?

While it's not necessary to have a dedicated GPU for trading, having one will ensure smooth performance. We recommend laptops with at least a GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card for the minimum setup, and GeForce RTX 3050 Ti for maximum performance.

What laptop do traders use?

It all depends on their budget and needs. Most traders will opt for a laptop with a minimum of 8GB RAM, a GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card, and an Intel i5-10500H processor. If you have the budget for it, laptops with 32GB RAM, a GeForce RTX 3050 Ti GPU, and an Intel i9-11900H processor can provide the maximum performance.

Is Ryzen 5 good enough for trading?

While Ryzen 5 processors are suitable for trading, they are not as powerful as Intel processors. We recommend at least an Intel i5-10500H processor for the minimum setup, and an Intel i9-11900H processor for maximum performance.

What's the best laptop for stock trading?

The best laptop for stock trading should have at least 8GB RAM, a GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card, and an Intel i5-10500H processor. For the maximum performance, we recommend laptops with 32GB RAM, a GeForce RTX 3050 Ti GPU, and an Intel i9-11900H processor.

Can a laptop be used for trading stocks?

Absolutely! You just need to make sure that the laptop you choose meets the minimum system requirements. We recommend laptops with at least 8GB RAM, a GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card, and an Intel i5-10500H processor for most day traders.

Is 500 GB SSD enough for trading?

500 GB SSD should be enough for most day traders. However, it is recommended to have at least 1 TB SSD if you plan to install more applications or store more data.

6 Best Laptops for Trading

HP Victus 15 I

1
A Great Value for Trading on the Go
Price
$600
i5-12450H | GTX 1650 | 8 GB RAM | 512 GB SSD | 15.6″ IPS; 1920×1080
Pros and cons
Pros
  • Easy to take on the go
  • Long battery life
Cons
  • Weak speakers
  • Limited RAM
Alternatives
$650
MSI GF63 Thin
Pros
  • Affordable price
  • Good performance with Intel Core i5 CPU
Cons
  • Poorly designed keyboard
  • Low-resolution display
View on Amazon

GIGABYTE A5 K1

2
A Cost-Effective Pick for Traders
Price
$790
Ryzen 5 5600H | RTX 3060 | 16 GB RAM | 512 GB SSD | 15.6″ IPS; 1920×1080
Pros and cons
Pros
  • Fast WLAN connection
  • Accessible battery from outside
Cons
  • Poor cooling with thin case
  • No card reader
Alternatives
$900
HP Victus 15t
Pros
  • Attractive price tag
  • Solid array of ports
Cons
  • Limited battery life
  • Lackluster display
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Acer Predator Triton 500

3
High-Speed Trading Meets Sleek Design
Price
$1200
i7-12700H | RTX 3060 | 16 GB RAM | 512 GB SSD | 16″ IPS G-Sync; 2560×1600
Pros and cons
Pros
  • Fast response time and high performance capabilities
  • Lightweight and sleek aluminum body
Cons
  • Soldered-in RAM limits upgradability
  • SSD not user-accessible
Alternatives
$1,460
ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14
Pros
  • Bright and Colorful Display
  • Compact and Lightweight Design
Cons
  • 8 GB VRAM Might be Outdated
  • Varying Performance in Performance Mode
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ASUS ROG Strix Scar

4
A Powerful Workhorse for Trading
Price
$2670
Ryzen 9 5900HX | RTX 3080 | 64 GB RAM | 4000 GB SSD | 15.6″ IPS-level G-Sync; 1920×1080
Pros and cons
Pros
  • Robust build for durability
  • Blazingly fast Wi-Fi 6E
Cons
  • Limited viewing angle
  • Heavy SSD throttling under load
Alternatives
$2,940
MSI Titan GT77
Pros
  • Slim chassis and large touchpad
  • High system performance
Cons
  • Pricey
  • No Power Delivery
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Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 4

5
An Ideal Workhorse for the Trading Industry
Price
$3650
i9-11950H | RTX 3080 | 64 GB RAM | 1000 GB SSD | 16″ IPS HDR; 3840×2400
Pros and cons
Pros
  • Powerful and reliable performance
  • Lightweight and durable housing
Cons
  • Not ideal for gaming performance
  • No SmartCard reader
Alternatives
$4,790
MSI Titan GT77 12UHS
Pros
  • Durable chassis for reliability
  • High system performance for quick calculations
Cons
  • Heavy and bulky design
  • Expensive price tag
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Dell XPS 17 9720

6
A Trade-Ready Dream Machine
Price
$6000
i9-12900HK | RTX 3060 | 64 GB RAM | 6000 GB SSD | 17.3″ eDP Touch; 3840×2160
Pros and cons
Pros
  • Blazing fast system performance
  • Multiple Storage slots Expansion options
Cons
  • No Wi-Fi 6E compatibility
  • Sub-par webcam resolution
Alternatives
$6,290
MSI Titan GT77 12UHS-064
Pros
  • Extremely powerful system performance
  • High RAM transfer rates
Cons
  • Bulky and heavy chassis
  • Expensive price tag
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Table of the Best Laptops for Trading

LaptopPrice (approx)
HP Victus 15 I$600
GIGABYTE A5 K1$790
Acer Predator Triton 500$1200
ASUS ROG Strix Scar$2670
Lenovo ThinkPad P1 Gen 4$3650
Dell XPS 17 9720$6000

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