Best Buy-and-Hold Online Brokerage Firm

Review of the best buy-and-hold brokerage firm account for online stock and mutual funds investors in 2020.

Best Buy-And-Hold Broker Overview

TD Ameritrade is a top rated buy-and-hold brokerage firm that offers a large selection of financial services at discount rates to investors. The broker has been delivering quality investment services for over 40 years. Today, with close to $1 trillion in customer assets, this company is one of the biggest brokerages by assets in the industry. With an excellent history and a large financial base, TD Ameritrade certainly has advantages that could benefit long-term investors. Let's take a closer look at the firm.

Company History

Beginning in 1975 as First Omaha Securities, Inc., the broker was one of the first organizations in the industry to offer discounted commissions. In 1997 the firm launched an IPO as Ameritrade. In 2005, the company purchased TD Waterhouse, and renamed itself TD Ameritrade. Still based in Omaha, the broker is one of the largest firms in the securities industry today.

Commissions and Account Minimums

Trading ETF's and stocks at TD Ameritrade costs $0. Placing a trade with the broker's automated phone system carries a $5 fee. Using a live broker is also available, and costs $25. Option traders pay an extra $0.65 per option contract.

The broker provides access to both government and corporate debt for clients to trade. The firm is compensated through the bid-ask spread on most fixed-income products. U.S. treasuries cost $25 at auction.

Accounts at TD Ameritrade have no minimum opening balance requirement. There are no account maintenance fees or annual fees. The broker rarely changes its commission schedule, so investors can depend on price consistency here.

With consistent pricing and no account fees and minimums, this broker would be a good choice for long-term, buy-an-hold investors.

Mutual Funds and ETF's

TD Ameritrade offers all ETF's commission-free for its clients. Dollar-cost averaging is also available, so buy-and-hold investors can save money in trading fees over the long term by purchasing commission-free ETF's. Many sectors are included, such as small cap value and global real estate. Commission-free ETF's are available from iShares, PowerShares, Vanguard, and many others.

Best buy and hold brokerage

The broker also offers more than 13,000 mutual funds for its clients, of which nearly 4,200 carry no transaction fee and no load. Several categories of mutual funds are available in the NTF program, such as high yield bond, world stock, and large cap growth. NTF funds must be held a minimum of 180 days, which shouldn't be a problem for buy-and-hold investors.

The broker has excellent mutual fund research capability. Several tools are available, including a screener, Morningstar data, and commentaries. Especially useful is the broker's Premier List, a catalog of mutual funds that have been rigorously evaluated by Morningstar investment experts. Using the Premier List takes a lot of the guess work out of the securities selection process. The Premier List is divided into categories, such as core investments and advanced investment strategies, to help investors construct a diversified portfolio. All Premier List funds come with no transaction fee, reducing long-term investment costs.

Order entry for ETF's and mutual funds is a breeze at TD Ameritrade using the regular web site or the handy SnapTicket at the bottom of the browser.


Customers who open a TD Ameritrade account with at least $25,000 also receive a $100 bonus in addition to the free trades. Promotion link: $0 commission stock and ETF trades.

Customer Service

Customer service representatives can be contacted by phone, e-mail, or fax. Phone service is available around the clock. Service is available certain hours of the day in Cantonese, Mandarin, and Spanish.

The broker has more than 100 retail locations across the U.S. for investors who want more personal financial assistance.

Cash Management Features

The broker offers a cash management account. It comes with checks and a Visa debit card, both free of charge. The account has no monthly account fees. ATM fees are reimbursed throughout the U.S. The balance of the account is deposited in up to two FDIC-insured banks. This policy double the regular $250,000 insurance.

Retirement Products

The firm offers no-fee IRA's. A retirement account with no fees is ideal for long-term investors who are trying to build a nest egg. Compared to an IRA account that has a $25 annual fee, over a ten-year period, TD Ameritrade clients will save $250.

Best buy and hold online broker


Barron's rated TD Ameritrade #1 online broker in two categories: Long-Term Investing, and for Novice Investors. The broker also tied for the highest ratings in two categories: Best for Options Traders and Best for In-Person Service.

The firm was awarded Best Online Broker for ETF-Focused Investors by ETF.com.

Best Buy-And-Hold Broker Recap

TD Ameritrade is a highly-rated broker that offers a good selection of financial services. Buy-and-hold investors will do especially well here. Particularly valuable is the broker's selection of funds, IRA's, and cash management features, all of which are designed to save the investor money over the long term.

TD Ameritrade Promotion

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