CFDs vs Share Trading

Trading CFDs can have numerous benefits over trading traditional shares

CFDs (Contracts for Difference) can help you make gains similar to those you can achieve through share ownership – but they are different in other ways.

Here we look at the key differences between CFDs and owning shares.

Key differences


Share trading


You don’t own the shares.

You do own the shares.

Dividends and voting

You receive dividends but don’t have any voting rights.

You receive dividends and may have voting rights.


You only have to stake a proportion of the position value (which could be as low as 0.5%) to place a CFD trade.

You need to pay the full value to buy any shares.

Market risk

You can go ‘long’ or ‘short’, so you can gain if the market rises or falls.

You’ll only make a gain if the share price rises.

How to buy

Online, using Spread Co's trading platforms

Through a broker


No additional commission (fees included within the spread)

May be broker commission to pay.

Stamp duty



Open a Live Account Open a Demo Account

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Spread betting and CFD trading are leveraged products and can result in losses that exceed your deposits. Ensure you understand the risks.

Losses can exceed deposits. Click here to learn more.