Cons and Pros of Etrade Etrade rating

ETRADE Pros and Cons (2023)

ETRADE pros and cons, benefits and perks offered, and complaints. Is ETRADE good or bad? ETRADE advantages and disadvantages for 2023.

E*TRADE Pros and Cons

E*TRADE is a popular broker that has served investors of nearly every type for many years. E*TRADE is now a part of the Morgan Stanley family and brings several unique features to the investment world.

If you are considering taking advantage of E*TRADE’s many services, you might want to look at the pros and cons first.

There is a lot to like about E*TRADE and the services on offer. However, depending on your needs and expectations, the broker may not be the right solution for you.

To help you decide, here are the E*TRADE pros and cons as we see them.

E*Trade Pros

  • Professional-level trading software
  • Zero-commission fee schedule
  • Solid range of account types
  • Extensive education suite
  • No account minimums to maintain
  • No inactivity limits or fees
  • Good promotions

E*Trade Cons

E*Trade Promotion

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E*TRADE Overview

Before getting started, here are some key points to consider.

E*TRADE offers banking services, insurance, managed portfolios, stock lending, retirement accounts, a complete range of investment vehicles, and a zero-commission fee schedule. There are also several trading platforms to choose from, automated investing, IPOs, and futures trading.

If you are looking for a one-stop shop for your investment needs, E*TRADE is undoubtedly a good candidate.

Which Investors Benefit from E*TRADE?

Thanks to the long list of account types, investment vehicles, and services available at E*TRADE, many different types of investors could benefit from a membership with the broker.

  • Long-term investors
  • Medium-term (swing) traders
  • Day traders
  • Futures traders
  • Institutions
  • Penny stock traders
  • Options traders
  • Customer Experience

E*TRADE is very good at creating a positive customer experience.

The broker offers many services to teach newer investors how to navigate the markets, including educational materials, guides, and expert advice.

E*TRADE also provides ample opportunities for experienced traders ready to take things to the next level.

In each stage of development and readiness, investors at E*TRADE have a complete package of tools and advice to make the most of their investment experience.


When it comes to cost, E*TRADE is about average.

The broker has gotten rid of commissions for stocks and ETFs, but you will pay per-contract fees for futures, bonds, OTC securities, and options.

E*TRADE is not alone in charging fees for ‘advanced’ securities like futures and options. It’s a common occurrence.

A couple of nice things about E*TRADE’s pricing approach are:

Futures commissions are low ($1.50 per contract).

Options fees are reduced from $0.65 to $0.50 per contract if an investor trades 30+ contracts in a quarter.

Etrade Complaints

Promotions and Special Offers

E*TRADE offers ongoing promotions designed to benefit both new members and current clients. The bonus offers are attractive and deserve a mention in this E*TRADE pros and cons article.

E*TRADE has a referral bonus that gives a $50 Amazon gift card for each new account created through the program. The bonus goes to the referrer and the referee, and the broker will continue giving the reward for each referral until reaching a total of $500.

Etrade Pros and Cons

A new account/funding bonus also pays new clients up to $3500. As long as you fund your new account within 60 days of opening it, E*TRADE will credit your account with a bonus specific to the deposit amount.

Etrade Cons

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Investment Vehicles

Investment product availability is one area where E*TRADE shines. Access to a long list of securities is one feature that investors seem to enjoy about the broker.

Investors can access stocks and ETFs listed on major U.S. exchanges, OTC market securities, IPOs and New Issues. There are also options, futures, mutual funds, and bonds.

The only investment vehicles that E*TRADE does not directly support are cryptocurrencies and forex products. While there are some workarounds for investors looking for crypto and forex, investors looking for these might be better at another broker.

Platforms and Tools

E*TRADE offers a lineup of trading platforms suitable for just about every investor type and need. A web-based interface provides account information, research, trading tools, and education. There is a standalone trading platform that can be loaded in a browser, a trading platform that can be downloaded to your PC, apps that go along with both versions of the trading platforms, and an API for developers looking to create apps and tools.

Each of the available platforms provides something unique, allowing investors to use tools that match their level of experience and expertise. Whether you are looking for basic order entry, on-the-go investment tools, advanced charting, analytics, or anything in between, E*TRADE’s platforms provide.

Account Types

E*TRADE offers many account types. The most common account type for investors is perhaps the individual brokerage account, but there are many other options available as well. You can open joint accounts, custodial accounts, IRAs, business accounts, bank accounts (savings and checking), and even managed portfolios (core portfolios).

Core Portfolios are E*TRADE’s version of automated investing. Using a combination of expert insight and automation tools, investors with core portfolios can take advantage of long-term account management solutions with little to no effort. While it is possible to realign goals associated with the core portfolio, it is not necessary to do so. The service is set up as a hands-free investment method.

Etrade Benefits

Research and Education

Another vital aspect of E*TRADE is the attention given to the learning process.

The broker seems to understand that many of today’s investors are self-directed and can benefit from learning materials. E*TRADE provides a healthy library of learning content, planning tools, webinars, and market insights to meet that need.

No matter what stage of development an investor is in, there is content that can help.

E*TRADE Pros and Cons Summary

The pros are certainly more substantial when it comes to weighing the pros and cons of E*TRADE as a financial services company and broker. E*TRADE is a full-service broker that has something for nearly everyone. Despite some minor issues, E*TRADE offers plenty to be happy about.

That said, some investors may prefer alternatives. Customized charting solutions, access to free futures market data (without an account minimum), direct cryptocurrency investing, forex market access, and free OTC market securities are some reasons investors may look elsewhere.

E*Trade Promotion

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Updated on 6/21/2022.

About the Author
Chad Morris is a financial writer with more than 20 years experience as both an English teacher and an avid trader. When he isn’t writing expert content for, Chad can usually be found managing his portfolio or building a new home computer.