ACAT Fees: Scottrade, Etrade, TD Ameritrade, CapitalOne Investing, Charles Schwab, Merrill Edge/Merrill Lynch, Fidelity Investments, Vanguard, Ally Invest, Optionshouse, Wells Fargo Wellstrade.

In pursuit of low trading commissions, many investors can pay very little attention to many other fees, which brokerage firms charge to compensate for their low pricing. Fees can be much higher than trading commissions and add up fast, thus potentially decreasing earnings. Account transfer fee is one of the brokerage's fees that investors should be aware of. The fee can be as high as $125.

Account transfer fee, otherwise known as ACAT, is charged when an account transfer from one brokerage firm to another is initiated by an investor. Both full and partial account transfer can incur fees. The account transfer fee is charged to the investor by his current broker; however, the investor always works through the company he is transferring his assets to. The good news is that the new broker can sometimes cover investor's charges for him by offering special offers on reimbursing account transfers. It's always good to ask a broker if the company would cover investor's transfer out charges.

Ally Invest offers the most generous offer. The broker reimburses up to $150 in fees for transferring an account from other brokerage firms.

In addition, if you plan an account transfer, beware of the account closing fee some brokerages charge. Some firms have no ACAT fees, yet they might have almost identical or even higher fees for account closure.

Brokerage Firm Full Account Transfer Out Partial Account Transfer Out Account Closing Fee Account Transfer Offers/ New Account Offers Review
Scottrade brokerage firm rating
$753 $03 $0 Trade free for 60 days + get up to $600. Review
Ally Invest
TradeKing brokerage firm rating
$50 $10.00 per security, $50 maximum $502 Switch to Ally Invest and get up to $150 in transfer fees reimbursed. Review
TD Ameritrade
4.5-star brokerage firm rating
$75 $0 $0 Trade free for 60 days + get up to $600. Review
Offered by TD Ameritrade
4-star brokerage firm rating
$75 $0 $0 Trade free for 60 days + get up to $600. Review
Fidelity Investments
3-star brokerage firm rating
$0 $0 $501 None Review
Charles Schwab
4-star brokerage firm rating
$50 $25 $0 None Review
Etrade brokerage firm rating
$60 $25 $50 None Review
4-star brokerage firm rating
$125 $125 $50 Get $5 per trade stock and ETF commissions. $4 per trade for IRAs. Review
CapitalOne Investing
3-star brokerage firm rating
$75 $15.00 per security ($75.00 maximum) $0 None Review
4-star brokerage firm rating
$75 $35 $50 None Review
4-star brokerage firm rating
$75 $25 (min. account equity requirement $500) $0 Up to $300 Cash Rewards + 500 Free Trades. Review
Lightspeed Trading
3-star brokerage firm rating
$95 $95 $952 None Review
Merrill Edge
3.5-star brokerage firm rating
$49.95 $0 $49.952 None Review
Motif Investing reating
$65 $0 $952 None Review
3-star brokerage firm rating
$75 $75 $602 None Review
3-star brokerage firm rating
$70 $204 $252 Open USAA account. Review
Vanguard brokerage company rating
visit visit $0 Review
WellsTrade brokerage firm rating
$95 $95 $952 None Review

1 - per account for Fidelity IRAs (excluding SIMPLE IRAs), Fidelity Retirement Plan (Keogh) Accounts.

2 - IRA closing/termination fee.

3 - A $2,500 minimum equity balance must remain in the account; otherwise the $75 full transfer fee will apply.

4 - Transfer a security through the Direct Registration Service (DRS).