Best Discount Brokers

Best discount brokerages in 2017. 3 top rated discount online brokers for low cost stock trading. Best discount stock brokers accounts for self directed investors.

Etrade rating


Etrade Commissions

Etrade is charging only $4.95 on stock and ETF trades for clients making 30 or more trades per quarter, and $6.95 otherwise. Mutual funds are priced at very low $19.99 per transaction. List of all broker commissions and fees is located under this link.

Etrade Advantages

  • No account maintenance or inactivity fees
  • Large and well established company
  • Powerful trading tools
  • No IRA account fees, and no minimums with electronic statements and confirmations
  • Low minimums to open accounts: $500 for a regular brokerage account and $0 for a retirement account
  • Investing advice is available by phone or in person
  • No surcharges on large orders or stocks under $1
  • Great research amenities from S&P, MorningStar, Thompson Reuters, Credit Suisse, and Smart Consensus

Etrade Disadvantages

  • High margin rates
  • $0.005 per share surcharge on extended hours trades (ECN fee) and on trades executed through E*TRADE Pro at an ECN during both regular market and extended hours sessions
  • E*TRADE Pro platform is available at no charge only to customers who execute at least 30 stock or options trades during a calendar quarter

Best Discount Broker Review

Etrade is very popular among stock, options and ETF traders as well as among mutual funds investors. Etrade lures new customers with hard-to-beat, $4.95 per trade commission on stock and ETF trades, attractive pricing plan for option trading, and low $20 per transaction rate on no-load mutual funds. This top discount broker does not have minimum account balance, volume, or minimum number of trades requirements to get these very low commissions.

Aside from low costs, Etrade's other major strength is trading tools that are rated among the best in the industry. Another advantages over competitors are great banking services, easy to learn interface, and excellent mobile app.

Read detailed review of Etrade

Open Etrade Account

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

Open Etrade Account

Ally Invest rating

Ally Invest

Ally Invest Commissions

Ally Invest's charge on stock and exchange traded funds (ETFs) is just $4.95 per trade. But what makes the firm even more special is $9.95 rate on all no load mutual fund transactions. To see all fees and commissions charged by the Ally Invest follow this link.

Ally Invest Advantages

  • Very low commissions
  • No minimums, or maintenance or hidden fees
  • Free real-time quotes
  • Top-rated customer service
  • Best online investor community
  • Fee-free IRAs
  • Free DRIPs (dividend reinvestment plans)
  • Low cost professional portfolio management

Ally Invest Disadvantages

  • Additional $0.01 per share on the entire order for stocks priced at less than $2
  • Short after-hours trading: 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm EST, instead of 4:00 pm - 8:00 pm EST
  • No NTF funds

Best Discount Broker Review

Ally Invest has been one of our top ranked discount brokerage firms for the last six years. In 2017 we rated it one of the Top Brokerage Firms for individual investors. Ally Invest's investment commissions remained consistently low through its ten year history: the company charges just $4.95 for stocks and ETFs, and rock bottom $9.95 for no-load mutual funds. Ally Invest received lots of awards from financial magazines: Barron's magazine named it "Best for Option Traders" and among the "Best for Long-Term Investing." In Smart Money magazine's annual broker survey, it was the best discount brokerage firm in Customer Service.

One major disadvantage Ally Invest has compared to competition is absence of NTF mutual funds. The broker is not the best choice for investors that want to trade stocks priced under $2.00, or trade during after hours.

Read detailed review of Ally Invest

Open Ally Invest Account

Switch to Ally Invest and get up to $150 in transfer fees reimbursed.

Open Ally Invest Account

TD Ameritrade rating

TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade Commissions

For anyone who wants to invest exclusively with a brand name brokerage house, TD Ameritrade is the best discount brokerage firm. It charges $6.95 on stock and ETF trades and has over 100 commission-free ETF's.

TD Ameritrade Advantages

  • Very few fees and no surcharges on stocks under $1, large orders, or after-hours trading
  • Large and well-known company with 126 local branches
  • Two excellent trading platforms available to all clients: Thinkorswim and Trade Architect
  • Users can practice trading without risking real money using PaperMoney virtual trading
  • Easy access to myTRADE online trader community
  • No account maintenance or inactivity fees
  • Free streaming quotes, including Level II
  • Best selection of independent, third-party research from 13 firms (Standard & Poor's, Morningstar, Jaywalk, TheStreet, etc.)
  • 100+ ETFs with no commissions
  • Large number of mutual funds - around 13,000 available; 4,051 NTF (no-transaction fee) funds
  • Free DRIP (dividend reinvestment plan)
  • No-fee IRA accounts

TD Ameritrade Disadvantages

  • $49.99 commission on transaction-fee mutual funds is high
  • High margin rates

Best Discount Broker Review

TD Ameritrade has been one of the top choices for customers looking to open an investment account at one of the oldest and largest discount brokerage firms in the country.

TD Ameritrade is the most popular out of the three top discount brokers among mutual funds investors. And it is easy to see why: it offers thousands of mutual funds from all major mutual fund families, over 2,000 no transaction fee (free to buy or sell) funds. There are no account inactivity or maintenance fees at the company for both IRA and taxable accounts.

Read detailed review of TD Ameritrade

Open TD Ameritrade Account

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

Open TD Ameritrade Account

Updated on 7/3/2017.

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