Etrade Review

Etrade Review

Etrade Commissions, Fees, and Minimum Deposit

Stocks and ETFs $9.99 ($7.99 if making 150+ trades per quarter)
Stocks and ETFs broker assisted $34.99
Options $9.99 + $0.75 per contract ($7.99 + $0.75 if making 150+ trades per quarter)
Mutual funds $19.99
Futures contracts $2.99 per contract, per side + fees
Fixed Incomemarkup or markdown and any transaction fee will be included in the price quoted
Forex No commissions. Etrade receives compensation through the bid/ask spread.
Bonds$1 per bond (minimum $10, maximum $250) for online secondary market trades. Includes Agency bonds, Corporate bonds, Municipal bonds, Brokered CDs, Pass-thrus, CMOs, Asset Backed Securities.

Investments stocks, bonds, mutual funds, futures, forex, fixed income, options, ETFs
Etrade minimum deposit to open account $500 for non-retirement cash account, $0 for retirement cash account, $2,000 for margin account
FeesEtrade fees
Promotion and login linksEtrade login, Etrade promotions and Etrade referral

Etrade New Account Setup

Etrade new account online registration is fast (around 10 minutes) and well-organized, though the forms are not as clean-looking as they can be. The company offers several Sweep Options (where your money is held until you invest it) and the default is the E*TRADE Financial Extended Insurance Sweep Deposit Account, which offers daily interest and FDIC insurance up to $1,250,000. Other Sweep Options do not specify what interest (if any) they provide.

The company gives customers access to free debit card and check writing, although a minimum balance of $1,000 is required for that. What we also like is that right away all documents are set to electronic delivery, and there is a $2 fee for each document the customer chooses to have delivered through regular mail - let's not forget about environment.

After we finished the application, we were given four options for funding an account: wire (1 business day), ACH (3 business days), check (5 business days) and account transfer (8 business days). We chose ACH, completed the bank information, and clicked the submit button. A message appeared saying "You have requested access to a customer-only feature". This is apparently an error and it is definitely confusing to users. But when we logged in into our new account, everything was fine - all the information has been saved.

Funds deposited through ACH will appear to be available almost immediately; the Net Account Value on the main Etrade screen will show the transferred amount. But in reality it will become available for trading three business days later. A customer service representative will call on that day and offer assistance. Website/Trading Platform/Tools Review

Etrade review

Etrade offers 18 powerful trading tools, including:

  • Chart Patterns: up to twenty stocks ranked by how closely they meet your interests and spending limits.
  • The Dragon: lets users scan the market for stocks and options that match chosen criteria.
  • StrategyScan: allows users to find a strategy that aligns with their investing goals, trading experience and risk level.
  • Chains: all-in-one screen for real-time quotes, intrinsic and time values, and complex spread construction.

Active traders (those who execute at least 30 stock or options trades during a calendar quarter) get free access to Etrade Pro - the firm's direct-access desktop trading platform. Etrade Pro lets users find the top performing sectors, industries, and stocks in just three clicks. Customers can also watch fully integrated live-streaming CNBC right from their desktop.

Etrade trading screens sometimes don't show the updated price of the security being traded, and that could lead to buying or selling at something other than the intended execution price. Users should double check the price with some other tool.

The company has done a great job in making everything on screens customizable: users can just drag and drop anything to the desired place.

Etrade offers great mobile applications for investors wanting to trade or access their account from the smart-phone. Among other features, users can track the markets with streaming real-time quotes as well as securely buy, sell and place conditional orders with just a few taps. The apps got high, 4 star rating in both Google Play and iTunes.

Etrade review

Etrade Review: Company Pros

  • No account maintenance or inactivity fees
  • Large and well established company
  • Powerful trading tools
  • No IRA account fees, and no minimums with electronic statements and confirmations
  • Low minimums to open accounts: $500 for cash account, $0 for retirement cash account, $2,000 for margin account
  • Investing advice is available by phone or in person
  • No surcharges on large orders or penny stocks
  • Great research amenities from S&P, MorningStar, Thompson Reuters, Credit Suisse, and Smart Consensus

Etrade Review: Company Cons

  • High commissions on stocks and ETFs
  • High margin rates
  • $0.005 per share surcharge on extended hours trades (ECN fee) and on trades executed through E*TRADE Pro at an ECN during both regular market and extended hours sessions
  • E*TRADE Pro platform is available at no charge only to customers who execute at least 30 stock or options trades during a calendar quarter

Etrade Review: Summary

Etrade is one of the best-known and largest online brokerage firms in the country, and it is a publicly traded company. When it was founded in 1992 as the first online discount brokerage, it revolutionized stock market trading. Since then, many other companies have followed the same business model. Based in New York, the company is winding down its mortgage-plagued bank activities to focus fully on its brokerage services.

Etrade's stock and ETF commission is $9.99 per trade, options commission is $9.99 plus $0.75 per contract. Mutual funds are priced much more attractively at $19.99 per transaction. There are 1,300 no-load, no-transaction fee mutual funds available through the company.

Etrade offers some banking services to its customers - two checking accounts and mortgages. One of the things we like best about an Etrade account is the variety of options for accessing funds when needed: ACH transfer to another bank account, debit card to make a purchase or withdraw cash, or writing a check. One of the benefits of using Etrade debit card is that they do not charge a fee for withdrawing money from most ATMs.

Etrade customers have access to more than 30,000 bond issues. Clients can invest in Agency, Corporate, and Municipal bonds, Brokered CDs, Pass-thrus, CMOs, and Asset Backed Securities. The pricing for investing in bonds is very good: $1 per bond with $10 minimum and $250 maximum.

Etrade offers a lot of valuable services to the clients but it is still very expensive. For example, the firms' main competitor and one of the largest brokerage houses in the U.S. - Scottrade - charges much lower commissions: $7 for stock and ETF trades, and $17 for mutual funds.

Open Etrade Account

Open Etrade account

E*trade Reviewed by Brokerage Review and 40+ customers on . Reviewed by Editor and 40+ Etrade customers. Rating: 4

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