Etrade brokerage firm review. Fees & commissions, advantages & disadvantages, minimum requirements & promotion offers for opening a new online account with the online discount stock broker.

Etrade brokerage firm rating

  • Stocks & ETFs: $6.95
  • Options: $6.95 + $0.75 per contract
  • Mutual Funds: $19.99


Etrade Review

Etrade offers an array of investment products at reasonable cost to investors. With the addition of banking, and futures and forex, Etrade is worth taking a look at.


Etrade Commissions & Fees Review

Trading stocks and ETF’s carries a $6.95 charge. Customers placing more than 30 trades per quarter receive discount pricing at $4.95 per trade. Options are an additional $0.75 per contract. The commissions are the same as TD Ameritrade, Scottrade, company's big rivals charge.

Futures trades are $2.99 per side, and forex is commission free because there’s a markup in the bid-ask spread that compensates Etrade.

The brokerage offers more than 9,000 mutual funds, of which 4,000 carry no-load and no transaction fee. The broker charges $49.99 an early redemption fee for no-load NTF funds hold for less than 90 days.. Mutual funds that carry a transaction fee are $19.99 at Etrade.

Etrade offers its customers more than 100 commission-free ETF’s with a 30-day holding requirement. A short-term redemption fee is $19.99 for customers with up to 149 stock and options trades during quarter, $15.99 for all other clients.

The brokerage provides investors access to both government and corporate debt. U.S. Treasuries at auction and on the secondary market are free to trade. The transaction fee for other bonds is $1.00, with a $10 minimum per order and a $250 maximum.


Etrade Research Review

Etrade has an assortment of educational resources for its clients, consisting of articles, on-demand videos, and in-person seminars at select cities. A variety of topics are covered in these resources, such as options, fixed-income, and IRA’s. Some of the material is pulled from Morningstar. A handy resource that many securities brokers don’t offer that Etrade does is futures research, including a dedicated futures customer service phone line.

Etrade Review

Etrade Customer Service Review

Etrade customer service can be contacted via an on-line chat system, phone, fax, or e-mail. Phone service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Using the web site, customers can perform a variety of tasks, such as sell fractional shares, order a debit card, or pay bills. Etrade also has local branches in several cities, where customers can find investment advice and live seminars.

Etrade Review

There is a discussion forum on the Etrade web site, but it isn’t very active.


Etrade Cash Management Features Review

Etrade has an FDIC-insured bank that offers a checking account with the standard $250,000 insurance. The deposit account can be linked to an Etrade brokerage account. The checking account comes with a Visa debit card and checks. Etrade rebates ATM fees for customers who have a minimum balance of $5,000, or who have combined balances across all Etrade accounts of at least $50,000.


Etrade Trading Tools Review

The web site is intuitive and easy to navigate. Etrade’s Total Trade Ticket can be used to place orders for stocks, options, and ETF’s. Conditional orders are available.

Etrade Review

Advanced platforms are available to frequent traders or to customers who are willing to pay a rather steep monthly fee of $99.95. Etrade Pro is a desktop application, and Etrade MarketTrader is a browser platform. Both come with various features that would benefit sophisticated traders, such as Level II quotes, streaming charts, and market news.


Etrade Mobile Trading Features Review

Etrade has applications for iPhone, iPad, Android phone and tablet, Amazon Fire phone, Kindle Fire HD, and Windows phone. The iPhone app has the most features. The interface is easy to navigate. Users will find a trade ticket, charts, educational videos, mobile check deposit, and many other features. There is a CNBC video archive available at no additional cost, although live CNBC streaming is only available to active traders or to clients who elect to pay a very steep $99.95 monthly fee. Despite this disadvantage, the Etrade mobile app is one of the best brokerage apps.

Etrade has recently rolled out an app for Apple Watch for the most busy and tech savvy of traders.


Etrade's Additional Benefits

Etrade is one of the few brokerage firms in the U.S. that offer futures and forex, in addition to the standard selection of securities. Unfortunately, customers who want to trade futures and forex must open separate accounts.

Besides their standard brokerage account, Etrade also offers IPO’s and IRA’s.

For clients wanting to pursue financial opportunities worldwide, Etrade offers access to international markets. Investors can trade securities directly on Canadian, French, German, Hong Kong, Japanese, and UK markets in local currencies. Once again, Etrade customers who want this capability will have to fill out another form.


Etrade Advantages

  • No inactivity or maintenance fees
  • No-fee IRA accounts
  • Wide variety of investing options
  • Good 24/7 customer service
  • Banking products and services
  • Over 100 commission-free ETFs
  • Selection of no transaction fee mutual funds
  • Advance platform for active traders at no charge
  • Streaming charts, Level II quotes
  • Access to international markets
  • In-person guidance at around 30 local branches around the country

Its selection of financial products, combined with 24/7 customer service, gives Etrade an edge over other brokers. Firstrade, for example, doesn’t offer 24/7 customer service; and Scottrade doesn’t offer futures or forex.

Etrade clients can access bank accounts, retirement products, equities, fixed-income, futures, and forex all with one log-in. The vast majority of brokers don’t have such a wide variety, TD Ameritrade being a rare exception.


Etrade Disadvantages

  • Very high trading commissions
  • Advanced trading platform is available for free to an investors who execute 30 stocks or options per calendar quarter


Etrade Review Summary

Etrade has been in the industry for a long time. Broker provides great customer support and excellent brokerage services.

Etrade touts its advanced trading platforms, but limits them to active traders. Most brokers offer their platforms at no charge. For instance, TD Ameritrade provides all its three trading platforms absolutely free to all customers. In fact, Thinkorswim, one of the two advanced TD Ameritrade's platforms, is ranked as the best in class. It offers savings of $100 per month when using one of the robust TD Ameritrade platforms compared with Etrade's platform!

Etrade’s standard commission is very high. For less active traders, TD Ameritrade, a major rival, comes out on top.

The high credibility, great service and additional benefits provided by Etrade come at a price. The good news however is that price-conscious investors can still find less expensive brokers not at the expense of the quality of the services offered.


Etrade Commissions and Fees

Stocks and ETFs$4.95 (0-30 trades/quarter) or $4.95 (30+ trades/quarter)
Stocks and ETFs broker assisted add $25
Options $6.95 + $0.75 per contract (0-30 trades/quarter) or $4.95 + $0.75 (30+ trades/quarter)
Mutual funds $19.99
Futures contracts $2.99 per contract, per side + fees
Fixed Incomemarkup or markdown and any transaction fee will be included in the price quoted
Bonds$1 per bond (minimum $10, maximum $250) for online secondary market trades. Includes Agency bonds, Corporate bonds, Municipal bonds, Brokered CDs, Pass-thrus, CMOs, Asset Backed Securities.


Etrade IRA & Account Fees

IRA Setup Fee$0
Annual IRA Fee$0
Account Closing Fee$50
Full Account Transfer Out$60
Partial Account Transfer Out$25
Outgoing Wire Fees (Domestic)$25
Outgoing Wire Fees (International)$25

Open Etrade Account


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