As you can see, we used a "star" rating system to rate online stock brokers in the list. The best brokerage firm accounts got the highest, five-star rating. Any company with
two- or one-star rating should be avoided. Three-star rated firm is perfectly fine, but there are, probably, better options for you to consider. All companies with three and half
stars and higher are recommended at least for one category of investors.
Every online investing firm has its strengths and weaknesses which could work for one customer but might not work for the other. Before opening an account, there are a lot of parameters to
consider beside commissions, well-known name and pretty website: surcharges and fees, friendliness to your knowledge level (perhaps you are a beginner? or you need a professional trading platform?),
availability of investment products you want to buy, online community, virtual trading, discounts, and others. We suggest you take a time to read brokerage reviews, to see for yourself
if a particular firm is right for you.
Some online brokers in the list let you open an account with $0 down: you should take this opportunity and open few brokerage accounts, to see which one you like the most.
It will also allow you to take advantage of unique and valuable features some companies provide at no charge. For example, Optionsxpress
offers lots of great trading and screening tools, and $0 to open account. If you decide to invest, the firm has hard-to-beat $9.95 commission on mutual funds.
With TD Ameritrade
there is $0 minimum to open account, and you'll get amazing selection of independent,
third-party research, best trading platform, free market data, and fantastic promotional offer. There are no inactivity or maintenance fees to worry about - everything is free.
This list of stock brokerage firms was last updated in February of 2014. All companies are members SIPC/FINRA, which means that they have to follow strict government rules and regulations, and
client accounts are insured (similar to bank account FDIC insurance) in case of brokerage company failure. If you know a North American/US online stock trading website
broker that should be included here, please contact us
This article was updated on 1/14/2015.