Online Brokerage Reviews

Online Broker Reviews. Stock Brokerage Firm Ratings.


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Online
Broker
Broker
Commissions
Investments
Offered
Broker
Review
Scottrade Review
Stocks, ETFs: $7

Mutual Funds: $17

Options: $7 plus
$0.70 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • CDs
  • Munis
  • ETFs
  • International Stocks
Scottrade rating

Scottrade
Review
TradeKing Review
Stocks, ETFs: $4.95

Mutual Funds: $9.95

Options: $4.95 plus
$0.65 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • Forex
  • CDs
  • ETFs
4.5-star brokerage firm rating

TradeKing
Review
TDAmeritrade review
Stocks, ETFs: $9.99

Mutual Funds: $49.99

Options: $9.99 plus
$0.75 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • ETFs
  • Futures
  • Forex
Ameritrade brokerage rating

TD Ameritrade
Review
Optionshouse Review
Stocks, ETFs: $4.95

Mutual Funds: $20

Options: $4.95 plus $0.50 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • Futures
  • ETFs
Optionshouse rating

Optionshouse
Review
Etrade Review
Stocks, ETFs: $9.99

Mutual Funds: $19.99

Options: $9.99 plus
$0.75 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • Futures
  • ETFs
Etrade brokerage rating

Etrade
Review
Charles Schwab Review
Stocks, ETFs: $8.95

Mutual Funds: $76 to buy
$0 to sell

Options: $8.95 plus
$0.75 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • CDs
  • Annuities
  • ETFs
4-star brokerage firm rating

Charles Schwab
Review
OptionsXpress review
Stocks, ETFs: $8.95

Mutual Funds: $9.95

Options: $14.95
(1 - 10 contracts)
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • Futures
  • ETFs
4-star brokerage firm rating

OptionsXpress
Review
Fidelity Review
Stocks, ETFs: $7.95

Mutual Funds: $49.95 ($75 for some funds)

Options: $7.95 plus
$0.75 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • CDs
  • Annuities
  • ETFs
  • International Stocks
4-star brokerage firm rating

Fidelity
Review
USAA Brokerage Review
Stocks, ETFs: $5.95 - $8.95

Mutual Funds: $45 minimum

Options: $5.95 or $8.95 plus
$0.75 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • Annuities
  • ETFs
USAA brokerage rating

USAA Brokerage
Review
TradeStation review 2016
Stocks, ETFs: $4.99 - $9.99

Mutual Funds: $14.95

Options: $1 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • Futures
  • ETFs
Tradestation rating

TradeStation
Review
Motif investing review
Stocks, ETFs: $4.95

Mutual Funds: N/A

Options: NA
  • Stocks
  • ETFs
Motif brokerage rating

Motif Investing
Review
Interactive Brokers review 2016
Stocks, ETFs: $0.005 per share
with $1 minimum

Mutual Funds: $14.95

Options: $0.70 per contract
plus exchange fees
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • Futures
  • Forex
  • ETFs
  • International Stocks
IB brokerage rating

Interactive Brokers
Review
Capital One Investing Review
Stocks, ETFs: $6.95

Mutual Funds: $19.95

Options: $6.95 plus
$0.75 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • ETFs
Sharebuilder rating

Capital One Investing
Review
Firstrade Review
Stocks, ETFs: $6.95

Mutual Funds: $9.95

Options: $6.95 plus
$0.75 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • CDs
  • ETFs
Firstrade brokerage rating

Firstrade
Review
Merrill Edge review
Stocks, ETFs: $6.95

Mutual Funds: $19.95

Options: $6.95 plus
$0.75 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • Futures
  • CDs
  • Annuities
  • International Stocks
  • ETFs
Merrill Edge brokerage rating

Merrill Edge
Review
Cobra Trading review
Stocks, ETFs: $5

Mutual Funds: NA

Options: $5 plus
$0.95 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • ETFs
3-star brokerage firm rating

Cobra Trading
Review
Lightspeed Trading Review
Stocks, ETFs: $4.50

Mutual Funds: NA

Options: $0.60 per contract
plus exchange fees
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Futures
  • Bonds
  • ETFs
3-star brokerage firm rating

Lightspeed
Review
ChoiceTrade Review
Stocks, ETFs: $5

Mutual Funds: $25

Options: $0.99 per contact
$8.95 minimum
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • ETFs
3-star brokerage firm rating

ChoiceTrade
Review
WellsTrade review
Stocks, ETFs: $8.95

Mutual Funds: $35

Options: $9.95 plus
$1 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • ETFs
3-star brokerage firm rating

WellsTrade
Review
Vanguard review
Stocks, ETFs: $7 - $20

Mutual Funds: $8 - $35

Options: $30 plus
$1.50 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • CDs
  • ETFs
  • International Stocks
  • Insurance
  • Commercial paper
3-star brokerage firm rating

Vanguard
Review
SogoTrade review
Stocks, ETFs: $5

Mutual Funds: N/A

Options: $5 plus
$0.50 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • ETFs
3-star brokerage firm rating

SogoTrade
Review
Kapitall review
Stocks, ETFs: $7.95

Mutual Funds: NA

Options: NA
  • Stocks
  • ETFs
2-star brokerage firm rating

Kapitall
Review
TradingBlock review
Stocks, ETFs: $7.50

Mutual Funds: $20

Options: $7.50 plus
$0.75 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • ETFs
3-star brokerage firm rating

Trading Block
Review
Muriel Siebert review
Stocks, ETFs: $14.95+

Mutual Funds: $35

Options: $34 - $370
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • International Stocks
  • ETFs
Siebert brokerage rating

Muriel Siebert
Review
SpeedTrader Review
Stocks, ETFs: $6.95

Mutual Funds: NA

Options: $2.50 plus
$1 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • ETFs
2-star brokerage firm rating

SpeedTrader
Review
Just2trade review

Stocks, ETFs: $2.50

Mutual Funds: $12

Options: $2.50 plus
$0.50 per contract
  • Stocks
  • Options
  • Mutual Funds
  • Bonds
  • ETFs
  • International Stocks


Just2trade
Review


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Note: most online brokerage firms reviewed on our website accept account applications only from U.S. citizens or legal residents. If you are not in one of these two categories then read this.


Online investing industry


In 2016, the online investing industry is more competitive than at any point in its history. There are around three dozen notable discount brokerage firms actively competing for investor attention. These companies range widely in size; some have tens of thousands of customers, while others have millions. Some brokers are targeting active investors and day traders, while others focus their attention on long-term and retirement investors. There are brokerages that mostly concentrate their attention on mutual funds, and there are companies that specialize in stock, option, forex, and futures trading. The industry is growing, filling all the available niches, and offering clients an ever richer set of services, products, and tools.

With so many choices, it's not easy to choose a brokerage firm. How do you narrow down more than thirty brokers? This is where online broker reviews come in. There are business analysts, financial magazines, regular investors, and bloggers that opened investment accounts at the discount brokerage firms, tried their services, and posted feedback on-line.


Our own online brokerage reviews, ratings and rankings


When preparing our online brokerage firm ratings and reviews, we considered and compared discount brokers using the following parameters: investment commissions and brokerage fees, customer service, usability of trading tools and website, presence of an online trader community and depth of educational resources, various supplemental services, range of products to trade, and research amenities. After making this detailed analysis, each brokerage received a star-based rating. Five stars is the highest possible rating, and one star is the lowest. The online brokers also were ranked according to the total score they received. Above, they are listed in that order.

In our broker reviews, we tried to provide information useful to all readers, including active investors, day traders, retirement account holders, and long-term investors. Of course, all these groups have their own unique needs, and it's not always accurate to use one score for all investors.

Almost all companies on our website are members of U.S. regulatory agencies, including SIPC (the brokerage equivalent of FDIC insurance) and FINRA. If a firm is not a member of a U.S. regulatory agency, we mention it in the company's review.

The ratings, reviews, and rankings provided on this site are our own opinion unless specified otherwise. The information is subject to change in the future. Brokerage firms do occasionally alter their fees, commissions, technological offerings, and product availability. Visit broker websites directly for the most up-to-date information on pricing and company policies.


Broker reviews and ratings from other sources


Every discount brokerage firm we have rated has its own unique strengths and weaknesses, and might not be the best choice for every type of customer. We strongly encourage our readers to take time to read online broker reviews from a few sources on the internet. This will provide a more complete and accurate picture of a brokerage firm under review.

It is also helpful to read brokerage companies' client reviews and complaints, which usually can be found as comments at the bottom of review articles or on specialized websites. Keep in mind that upset clients are much more likely to go on the internet and post reviews than satisfied customers. If a brokerage firm has millions of clients and there are just a few complaints, it means most of the clients are happy with the firm.


Opening a brokerage account


Some online brokers allow new clients to open an account with no initial cash deposit. Opening a few accounts with these companies will allow you to try out several and choose the one or two you like most, based on your own experience. Using this method will allow you to make better decisions about where to invest your money. However, choosing this approach will not necessarily work for all retirement accounts, since many brokers (although not all) charge an IRA closing fee, which can be anywhere from $20 to $125 (see the fee schedules in our reviews). All discount brokers we have reviewed do not charge fees for closing regular (non-IRA) brokerage accounts.

Many stock brokers offer promotions to new customers for opening an account. Sometimes existing clients are also eligible for one of these specials. Some of them are very generous. For example, a promo may include anywhere from one to three months of free trading, plus a cash bonus. The size of the bonus may depend on the amount the customer deposits. We strongly encourage our readers to take advantage of these promotions since they create an opportunity not only to place trades with the broker at no cost, but potentially make some extra cash as well.


Updated on 9/13/2016.


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