The tools you use depend on your setups. I primarily trade momentum and growth based setups. The tools I use are suitable for that .
The cost of tools for me is miniscule as I trade a large sized account . But for those with small account keeping cost of trading low is important.
I use three brokers for my trading but my favorite broker is Interactive Brokers. It has the best execution. The user interface is very suitable for active trading. Shorts are widely available.
TD Ameritrade and Fidelity I use primarily for Solo 401k and Educational IRA as IB does not have those accounts.
TD ameritrade has very bad fills. The availability of shorts is very sporadic. It is the worst out of the brokers I have used.
Telechart 2000 Gold
This is my most used trading tool. I run all my scans on this.
For my style of trading this is the best and simplest trading tool.
The only big limitation of TC2000 is it does not have more than 2 years of history.
Telechart Gold Old version
I use this for testing things as it has old history of stocks going back years.
I also run all my Market Monitor scans on this for continuity sake.
This is a real time alert software that I use for finding some of the short term swing trades. You can see the scans I use in the Learning Section.
I use Marketsmith primarily for Episodic pivots strategy as it has sales , EPS growth rates, fund holding and other information easily available.
I do not use any other function of Marketsmith. It is not a very user friendly software and if there was a choice of other tool which could give me same information I would never use it.
Technology is rapidly changing but most of IBD services use old outdated chunky tools and user friendliness is their last priority.
There is nothing Elite about the Elite thing. Almost all the functions on Elite are on free version.
I subscribed to this at start of year but do not plan to renew.
The free Finviz is excellent tool for those on budget.
However many IPO's are missing on Finviz.
I use this primarily for Episodic Pivots analysis.
It gives news and rumors on stock. It allows you to see news in last few months to year.
Investor's Business Daily
This is one newspaper that has made me lots of money as I have found some very good Episodic Pivots ideas in front page of this newspaper.
It primarily focuses on Growth and momentum investing.
If you get in to depth of those two styles of investing you will find lot of IBD philosophy and method makes sense.
But you can do better by developing your own method based on the philosophy and not blindly follow it.
Also many very popular setup ideas on IBD do not work as well as they used to as they have become very popular.
All other IBD services are not worth wasting your money on. They are just trying to create services to cross sell to existing subscribers.
There are hundreds of tools in the market currently. Select tools that are absolutely essential and that will make you millions.