JP Morgan Chase You Invest vs Firstrade


2019 JP Morgan Chase You Invest versus Firstrade - which is better? Compare IRA/Roth accounts, online investing fees, stock broker mutual fund rates, and differences.



Overview of Firstrade and Chase You Invest


Chase’s new brokerage arm You Invest offers securities trading with very low fees. It has stiff competition, though, from old stalwart Firstrade. Let’s examine how these two companies stack up against each other.


Cost


Broker Fees Stock/ETF
Commission
Mutual Fund
Commission
Options
Commission
Maintenance
Fee
Annual IRA
Fee
Firstrade $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Chase $2.95 $0 n/a $0 $0


Services


Broker Review Cost Investment Products Trading Tools Customer Service Research Overall Rating
Firstrade
Chase


Range of Investments


Firstrade customers can buy and sell stocks, bonds, ETF’s, closed-end funds, mutual funds, and option contracts. Penny stocks are available, too. You Invest traders get all of these investment choices except options and penny stocks.

Firstrade wins the this category.


Trading Software


Firstrade fails to deliver a browser platform or a desktop system. It does provide a decent website. During our testing of it, we found it easy to use. Its best highlight perhaps is the trade bar that sits at the bottom of the screen. It is able to submit orders for stocks, ETF’s, and options. In expanded mode, a small graph can be displayed along with headline news on an entered ticker symbol. Order types include stop, limit, and trailing varieties. There are several duration choices as well.


Firstrade Trading


The website itself has a simple trade ticket for mutual funds, which can’t be traded on the trade bar. Distribution preferences can be specified on the trade ticket, which displays vital data, such as minimum investment amounts and settlement date.

Charting on Firstrade’s site is rather simple. Charts are based on Morningstar’s software. Comparisons can be made, and there are drawing tools, technical indicators, and company events. A chart can’t be displayed full screen.

Like Firstrade, You Invest has no browser or desktop trading system. Unlike Firstrade, You Invest does not offer a trade bar. The broker’s site is very simple, although it surprisingly isn’t easy to navigate.

Charting on the You Invest site is fairly simple and is on the same level as Firstrade. We found comparisons, a few technical indicators, company events, and a few graph styles.


JP Morgan Chase Trading Account


Moving to the website’s trading ticket, we find a few order types and just two time-in-force options (day and on-the-close). Neither broker offers complex order types or direct-access routing.

Firstrade’s trade bar gives it the nod here.


Mobile Platforms


You Invest customers can trade securities on the broker’s mobile app. Unfortunately, we didn’t find many features on it during our investigation. There is no mobile check deposit (for investment accounts), and no funds transfer. Charting is very basic and worse than the company’s website charting.


JP Morgan Chase Trading App


Transitioning to Firstrade, we get another simple app, but there are better features. For example, charting is more sophisticated and includes technical indicators, customization, and several graph styles. A chart can be saved, too. On the downside, a graph cannot be displayed in horizontal mode.

The app’s order ticket offers market, limit, stop, and trailing types. Duration options are the same as the ones on the broker’s website (day, GTC up to 90 days, and extended-hours trades). Special orders offer OPG, CLO, and AON choices.


Firstrade Mobile


Option chains appear on Firstrade’s app, and the trade ticket for them is equally impressive as the order ticket for stocks. One negative note is the lack of multi-leg strategies.

Firstrade wins again.


DRIP Service


At Firstrade, investors can sign up for a free Dividend Reinvestment Plan for stocks and ETF’s priced above $4. Firstrade requires the security to be marginable. Individual securities or an entire account can be enrolled electronically.

You Invest also has a free DRIP system. It excludes penny stocks since these securities can’t be traded at You Invest. As with Firstrade, an entire account or specific stocks can be enrolled and un-enrolled easily.

You Invest wins its first category.


Fund Resources


Inside our Firstrade test account, we used the broker’s mutual fund screener to find 8,340 funds that were open to new purchases. All of these have no transaction fee, and 3,412 have no load. The Firstrade screener is able to search by many criteria, such as Morningstar rating, return history, manager tenure, and portfolio turnover.

As for ETF’s, Firstrade offers every single one with zero commissions. Even better, there are no minimum hold periods for exchange-traded funds.

Compared to Firstrade, You Invest has a good screener. Many of the search criteria on Firstrade’s tool are also on You Invest’s. We found only 3,107 funds open to new investors, however. They are all no-load, no-transaction-fee funds. On the ETF side, You Invest does not have a list of commission-free funds.

Firstrade looks like the better firm here.


Investment Research


The You Invest site hosts articles on investment education. For example, we found resources on volatility, when to invest, how to handle market crashes, and more. There are also a few short videos from Chase Private Client on investing topics.

Shifting to security profile pages, You Invest offers information on trading characteristics, like 52-week range, average volume, and market capitalization. Strangely missing are financial statements. Although You Invest does not yet offer trading in derivatives, the broker’s website does display option chains on a stock’s profile. News articles from Comtex are displayed as well.

Firstrade’s website does a better job of offering more details on stocks. For example, we could find financial statements and more facts on insider activities. These materials are simply taken from Morningstar’s site.

Firstrade’s educational materials are brief and not very extensive. We found both articles and videos, although not very many of either. We did like the broker’s glossary of investment terms.

It’s a draw in this category.


Promotions


Firstrade: $0 commissions + up to $200 in transfer fee rebates.

Chase: First year get 100+ commission-free online stock and ETF trades.



Recommendation


For active equity and option traders, we suggest Firstrade over its rival.

For retirement and education saving, we also recommend Firstrade. The broker has more account types than You Invest.

For fund trading, we also propose Firstrade over You Invest.

Small investors can do well with either firm as neither one of them has an account minimum.

Beginners will probably be better served at Firstrade due to the broker’s investing glossary.


JP Morgan Chase vs Firstrade - Results


Firstrade won the vast majority of categories. Although You Invest is owned by a much larger financial parent, the smaller broker is the better choice.


Updated on 2/22/2019.