TD Ameritrade Review

Best Traditional IRA Brokerage Firm Account Review for 2014

Best traditional IRA brokerage firm in 2014. Top online broker for IRA: review traditional retirement account fees, beginner support, trading tools, costs.

Best Traditional IRA Broker Pricing

Stocks and ETFs $9.99
Stocks and ETFs broker assisted $49.99
Stocks and ETFs interactive voice response (IVR) telephone system $34.99
Options $9.99 + $0.75 per contract
No-load mutual funds $49.99
Treasuries at auction $25
All other bonds and CMOs, CDs on a net yield basis
Futures $2.25 per contract (plus exchange & regulatory fees)
Forex Non-commission currency pairs trade in increments of 10,000 units (and do not contain a "#" symbol suffix). There are no additional fees or charges.

Investments stocks, mutual funds, options, ETFs, bonds, CDs, UITs, futures, and forex
TD Ameritrade\TDA minimum deposit to open account $0 for cash account, $2,000 for margin account
FeesTD Ameritrade fees

TD Ameritrade Traditional IRA Pros

  • No surcharges on penny stocks, large orders, or after-hours trading
  • Large and well-known company with 126 local branches
  • Two excellent trading platforms: Thinkorswim and Trade Architect
  • Users can practice trading without risking real money using PaperMoney virtual trading
  • No-fee IRA accounts
  • No account maintenance or inactivity fees
  • Rich selection of independent, third-party research from 12 firms (Standard & Poor's, Morningstar, Jaywalk, TheStreet, etc.)
  • Large number of mutual funds - over 13,000 available; 2,500 NTF (no-transaction fee) funds
  • Free DRIP (dividend reinvestment plan)

TD Ameritrade Traditional IRA Cons

  • At $9.99 for stocks and ETFs and $49 for mutual funds, commission rates are very high
  • Extremely high margin rates

TD Ameritrade Trading Tools

TD Ameritrade provides three trading platforms: Thinkorswim, Trade Architect and website-based trading. Thinkorswim is designed for advanced traders while Trade Architect and website-based trading are designed for less experienced investors. TD Ameritrade web pages are easy-to-navigate and user friendly and are most suitable for beginner investors. They are easy to navigate with well labeled tabs across the top of each page. On the bottom of the page there is the site-wide quote bar that includes real-time quotes and SnapTicket which allows trading stocks and options from any page on the site.

The Trade Architect trading platform is simple and clean, and its functions are similar to website-based trading except that all of its data is in one central location. In addition to all the basic functions that you can find in website-based trading, Trade Architect offers streaming watch lists, ideas generators, level IIs and time& sales. The layout can be customized and is useful for those intermediate investors who want to trade stocks and options daily. However, serious traders will find Thinkorswim trading platforms much more attractive.

Although Thinkorswim is intuitive, it takes an investor with a comprehensive knowledge of technical analysis and who has watched the demos to fully utilize its functions. Several external computer monitors are also needed so all information can be displayed clearly. With three hundred plus technical studies and a combination of these studies for each chart, one can be overwhelmed.

In addition to Charts there are six other main tabs. Each tab is jammed with information such as currency trading, future trading, heat maps, stock scanners and options screeners. The Analysis tab allow investor to view risk graphs for any trade setup and its future planned adjustments to the current trades. In the Tool tab, there is a function called my trade which can be used to compare and share the investor’s ideas with other trades.

Overall Thinkorswim can take any trader as far as their imagination but offers too much information for casual investors.

TD Ameritrade Research Tools

TD Ameritrade substantial research offering is the best among the online brokerages. They offer up to seven third-party research reports for most equities. You can customize you stock charting in TD Ameritrade research with the five upper indicators and 25 lower indicators. Company's earnings, dividends and splits can be easily shown on their big charts. You can also view and compare several companies with a single chart.

Screen is a very useful tool on TD Ameritrade research platform. Customers can pick and choose which criteria to screen stocks, options, mutual funds and ETFs with. This makes spotting market opportunities and generating investing ideas painless.

TD Ameritrade's option chain window lay-out is clear and well designed. It provides several methods to display data and avoids cramming the screen with too much information. It even provides the S&P capital IQ option report on some of stocks so customers can do the last minute research before trading their options.

Best Traditional IRA Brokerage

TD Ameritrade is an online brokerage that is particularly suitable for customers who have access to limited resources to trade online. Unlike some brokerages that charge a commission fee based on the customer's account balance, TD Ameritrade charges a flat rate of $9.99 for market, limit and options trades. They also require no minimum deposit.

Like some of its large competitors, TD Ameritrade offers a No-Transaction-Fee for selected ETFs and mutual funds. The firm charges $9.99 and $49.99 trading fee for trading the rest of ETFs and mutual funds respectively.

TD Ameritrade does not charge additional fees for after-hours or penny stock trading. They also do not charge account inactivity or account maintenance fees.

For beginner traders TD Ameritrade provides many educational materials including articles and seminars. Although TD Ameritrade does offer customer supports through phone, e-mail, instant chat or in person at many local offices, some clients complain about the competence of the employees.

TD Ameritrade also offers many fixed income investments and varied account options such as IRAs, Roth IRAs, Coverdell ESAs, custodial accounts and 529 plans.

Overall, we strongly recommend TD Ameritrade for Traditional IRA account. Investors can open Traditional IRA cash account online with no money down in about 10-15 minutes.

TD Ameritrade Promotion Link:

Trade free for 60 days + get up to $600.

This article was updated on 9/24/2014.

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