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Merrill Lynch Fees Schedule, Brokerage Account Commissions Cost


2018 Merrill Lynch fees schedule, commissions, broker stock trading cost, annual and inactivity charges, online investing account pricing, IRA fees, and cash sweep rates.



Merrill Edge Fees


This article will list Merrill Lynch fees for their wealth management account. To see Merrill Lynch's fees for their self directed brokerage account go to Merrill Edge fees article. Their you'll find Merrill Edge charges on individual retirement accounts (IRA's), account transfer fees, broker trading commissions, and margin interest rates.


Merrill Lynch Wealth Management Account Annual Fee


There is no annual fee for Merrill Lynch wealth management account.


Merrill Lynch Account Fees


Table below shows Merrill Lynch fees for their managed account:

Account BalanceMerrill Lynch FeeStyle Manager Fee
Under $1 million2.70%0.14% to 0.40%
$1 million – $2 million2.15%0.14% to 0.40%
$2 million – $5 million1.80%0.14% to 0.40%
$5 million – $25 million1.50%0.14% to 0.40%
Over $25 millionNegotiated0.14% to 0.40%

The amount of charge called "style manager fee" depends on the portfolio or strategy the client chooses. There is no style manager fee for IRA accounts. In some cases, fees may be reduced by mutual fund fees. Merrill Lynch has a few different managed packages that aim to meet different investment goals. In some locations, some customers may be successful in negotiating lower fees.

Merrill Lynch accounts are charged quarterly.


Merrill Lynch Managed Account Commissions


There are no commissions charged for stock, mutual fund, or ETF transactions for Merrill Lynch wealth management account.


Merrill Lynch Other Fees


Merrill Lynch charges markups and markdowns on fixed-income transactions, accounts exchange fees, and interest on margin loans and short sales. The company also offers financial planning services. The cost of this service is not stated on their website, and has to be negotiated between Merrill Lynch and the customer.


Comparison


Online advisory firm Personal Capital examined anonymous data from 155,924 of its users to investigate the true client costs from both advisory and fund-related fees across 11 brokerage firms. The data showed TD Ameritrade had the highest average advisory fees at 1.53%, but among the lowest asset management fees on its mutual funds and ETFs (0.21%). The biggest offender was Merrill Lynch, who had the highest average expense ratios on mutual funds and ETFs (0.68%) and the third highest average advisory fee (1.3%) for an average total fee to the client of 1.98%. According to the report, that would cost the average $500,000 account $936,390 in fees over 30 years of investing, assuming annual returns of 7% and fees that remained consistent over that time frame.


Merrill Lynch Reviews and Website Link


To see a Merrill Lynch wealth management account review click here.

For a Merrill Edge review go to this link.

Merrill Lynch fees are as of 2018 and are subject to change. For the most recent information on Merrill Lynch account fees and charges visit their website:

Merrill Lynch





Merrill Lynch Overview


In addition to regular brokerage accounts, Merrill Lynch's self-directed brokerage division called Merrill Edge also offers several different types of Individual Retirement Accounts (IRA's). With some helpful educational tools and the financial strength of Bank of America backing it up, this broker is worth considering.


Merrill Lynch IRA Account Types


Five different types of IRA's are available at Merrill Edge. Investors can choose from Traditional, Roth, SEP, SIMPLE, and Rollover. A Traditional IRA is intended for investors who are in a higher tax bracket before retirement, whereas the Roth was constructed for persons who will be in a higher tax bracket during retirement. A SEP IRA is a retirement account designed for sole proprietorships, self-employed persons, partnerships, non-profits and corporate employers. Earnings grow tax-deferred in this account. A SIMPLE IRA was constructed for small businesses with under 100 employees. Earnings in this type of IRA also grow tax-deferred. Finally, the Rollover IRA is an IRA whose assets are transferred from a company retirement plan.

Merrill Edge has a retirement help desk that can assist customers wanting to open any retirement account. It is open during the weekday and on Saturday.


Merrill Lynch Fees


Merrill Lynch IRA Fees and Minimums


Retirement accounts at Merrill Edge have no annual, setup, or inactivity fees. The broker also has no minimum opening deposit requirement. There is a $49.95 IRA transfer or closeout fee.

Once the retirement account is established, the broker’s regular commission schedule for securities trading is in effect. Stock and ETF trades are $6.95, lower than what many other brokers charge. Merrill Edge also offers live brokers to help customers submit a trade. Using this service costs $29.95. Placing a trade over the firm's automated phone system carries the regular $6.95 commission.


Mutual Funds


Investors who don't want to pay trading commissions should consider the broker's selection of NTF mutual funds. Traders have access to over 800 mutual funds with no load and no transaction fee. Merrill Edge provides more than 4,000 mutual funds in total. Transaction-fee mutual funds cost $19.95 to buy, sell, and exchange. A $39.95 short-term trade fee applies to NTF funds that are held less than 90 days.


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IRA Calculators


Merrill Edge has several calculators to assist investors with their retirement planning. Topics covered include 401(k) contributions, Roth IRA conversions, required minimum distributions, 401(k) rollovers, and cash distributions.

The broker's IRA conversion calculator is for investors who are considering converting a Traditional IRA to a Roth. The tool considers whether investors pay conversion taxes from IRA proceeds or from other sources.

Another useful calculator is a cash distribution tool. It helps investors see the potential consequences of making an early withdrawal from an IRA. Users input various criteria, such as age, account balance, and income tax bracket. The calculator then determines the IRS penalty for the withdrawal. It also shows what the account will look like if the withdrawal is not made.

The broker's 401(k) rollover calculator is very handy in evaluating the advantages and disadvantages of converting a 401(k) plan to an IRA after leaving a job. The tool shows the consequences of taking a lump sum distribution, rolling the balance over into a new 401(k), or converting the account to a Traditional IRA. The calculator can help investors make better retirement decisions.


IRA Selector Tool


The broker has a useful tool that walks investors step-by-step through a questionnaire that will determine the appropriate IRA for the investor, Roth or Traditional. The tool asks for a variety of information, such as age, income, tax filing status, and other retirement plan participation. The tool then recommends either a Roth or Traditional.


IRA Retirement Evaluator


Merrill Edge has a useful tool that determines the amount of monthly income a client needs during retirement. Users input such data as current age, life expectancy, sources of income, and retirement lifestyle. The evaluator then provides an estimate of the amount of income that will be needed per month during retirement.


IRA Videos and Educational Tools


The broker has some useful videos and information on retirement topics and IRA's. These resources cover several areas, such as how to avoid running out of money during retirement, and what the advantages and disadvantages are of different IRA's.


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Broker Comparison


Merrill Edge has some distinct advantages for retirement accounts compared to some other brokers. For example, the firm's no minimum opening deposit requirement is better than harles Schwab's $1,000 minimum. Merrill Edge also has better research tools than Firstrade and Scottrade.

On the other hand, the broker offers no commission-free ETF's for its clients to trade. This is a failure when many other brokers, such as TD Ameritrade and Fidelity, do offer a list of ETF's that are free to trade. Some of the exchange-traded funds have low expense ratios and other characteristics that retirement savers might prefer.

Merrill Edge's commissions are in line with many large brokerages. Smaller discount brokers, Ally Invest or Firstrade are much better priced than Merrill Edge.


Merrill Lynch IRA Review Summary


Merrill Edge has some good retirement planning tools. With an enviable commission schedule, investors saving for life after work can do well here.