Best Brokerages With Checking Account

Below we list online stock brokerage firms with best checking accounts (ATM, debit cards and check writing privileges) in 2017. As you can see, TD Ameritrade and Scottrade offer the most appealing combination of a free checking account with linked brokerage investment service.

best brokerage checking account

TD Ameritrade rating

TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade Checking Account Details

  • No monthly maintenance fees, no minimum balance requirements
  • Unlimited check writing and free standard 100 checks re-orders
  • Free online bill pay
  • Avoid debit card ATM fees — you get reimbursed for any ATM charges nationwide
  • Easily move money between TD Ameritrade accounts
  • Cash earns 0.01% APY

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TD Ameritrade checking review and TD Ameritrade brokerage review

Open TD Ameritrade Brokerage and Checking Account

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

broker with free checking account

Etrade rating


Etrade Brokerage Checking Details

  • Free online bill pay services
  • Free, unlimited ATM fee refunds
  • Free ATM/VISA debit card
  • Online images of cleared and deposited checks
  • 0.05% APY on accounts with $5,000 or more; 0.01% for $0 - $5,000
  • Move money between accounts at E*TRADE and elsewhere in seconds with our free, cash transfer service
  • $100 minimum initial deposit required
  • $5,000 average monthly balance in the account required to avoid a $15 monthly fee

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Etrade checking review and Etrade brokerage review

Open Etrade Brokerage and Checking Account

At E*TRADE, active traders get $4.95 trades + 50₵ per options contract.

brokerage checking accounts

USAA rating


USAA Brokerage Checking Account Details

  • Use 60,000 USAA-preferred ATMs for free. Plus, if you have to use another bank's ATM USAA will refund bank fees
  • Qualified members can deposit checks with their smartphone
  • Pay, manage and view all your bills in one place with Web BillPay
  • Send money to anyone from your phone using an email or mobile number
  • Create a budget and track your spending with USAA MoneyManager
  • Free unlimited funds transfers to and from any bank nationwide
  • Receive alerts when there's suspicious activity on your USAA account
  • Zero liability for unauthorized debit card charges

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USAA checking review and USAA brokerage review

Open USAA Brokerage and Checking Account

ATM Rebates. No monthly service Fees. USAA Classic Checking.

best brokerage checking account

Scottrade rating


Scottrade Checking Account Details

  • Scottrade Bank offers two types of checking accounts: Standard checking and Interest checking. Both checking account types are available for a minimum deposit of $100, but you are required to maintain the $100 balance in order to accrue and be paid interest in an Interest checking account. No interest is accrued or paid in a Standard checking account
  • Enjoy the convenience of online banking with no maintenance, withdrawal, transfer or ATM fees, including most cash withdrawal fees charged by other banks ATMs
  • Overdraft protection, provided by linking your bank accounts
  • Free online bill pay
  • For added convenience and access, your debit card can be linked from your primary account to other eligible Scottrade Bank accounts opened under the same brokerage account

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Scottrade checking review and Scottrade brokerage review

Open Scottrade Brokerage and Checking Account

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

brokerage checking accounts

Wellstarde rating


Wells Fargo Brokerage Checking Details

  • Platinum debit card
  • Two months of free Online Bill Pay, after that Bill Pay is $3 per month Monthly service fee
  • $7 monthly service fee with online-only statements ($9 with paper statements) or waived when requirements are met
  • The monthly service fee is waived on the Wells Fargo Value Checking account with one of the following:
    • $1,500 minimum daily balance, or
    • Qualifying direct deposits totaling $500 or more each statement cycle

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Wells Fargo checking review and Wells Fargo brokerage review

Open Wellstrade Brokerage and Checking Account


Overview of Using a Checking Account with a Brokerage Firm

Having a checking account at a bank is so 20th century. Today, many brokerage firms provide cash management tools, and they often include some really nice benefits that most brick-and-mortar banks don’t provide. This article will explore the advantages of using a broker for banking services, and it will compare the services to traditional bank products.

Cash Management Tools at Broker-Dealers

At the turn of the 21st century, many brokerage firms began offering cash management tools to their clients as a service. This made sense because customers would always deposit cash before buying securities. When stocks and bonds paid dividends, these would typically go into the core position of the trading account. So brokerage firms started to develop methods to allow their customers to tap into these cash balances.

Today, many brokers, including both traditional firms and on-line discount brokers, provide a host of cash management tools. The features themselves vary widely from broker to broker, as do the costs.

The most common banking tools available at broker-dealers today are checks and a debit or ATM card. Some brokerage firms go further by providing services like bill pay, credit cards, and on-line wires.

The checks and debit card can function with an independent and separate account, which can be an actual checking account or a securities account that operates as a checking account. Or, the cash management tools can be attached to a brokerage account. Debits made with a check or ATM card come out of the account’s core position, which could be cash or a money market mutual fund.

Benefits of Using a Brokerage Account as a Checking Account

Brokerage houses have made sure that their banking features are competitive with traditional banks. In fact, sometimes it is actually better to use a broker’s cash management tools as a checking account. For example, some brokers now provide ATM rebates whenever their debit cards are used to make withdrawals. Most traditional banks don’t offer this lucrative service.

Another nice feature that some brokers offer is the ability to move cash to multiple banks, which increases the standard $250,000 FDIC insurance. Regular banks of course don’t want to move funds to rival companies, so this really nice feature probably isn’t available at your local bank.

Rates on deposits of cash are usually competitive with interest rates offered on bank accounts. In fact, some cash yields at several broker-dealers now exceed rates that are available on traditional bank products.

Another advantage to having a checking account at a brokerage firm is that you can quickly and easily access needed cash when you’re ready to place a securities order. If you have to pull funds from an external bank account, it may be several days before the transfer can be used for trading purposes.

Let’s take a look at some specific brokerage firms and compare their cash management services to what is available at some traditional banks.

Brokerage Checking Accounts Summary

Brokerage houses are doing a better job of providing their clients with checking account tools. Many services are now competitive with traditional banks, and in fact, some of them surpass what brick-and-mortar banks currently offer.

Updated on 8/2/2017.

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