2018 USAA Investments brokerage firm review. Fees and commissions, advantages and disadvantages, minimum requirements and promotion offers for opening new online discount stock broker account.


Rating:  USAA Investments rating

  • Stocks & ETFs: $8.95
  • Options: $8.95 + $0.75 per contract
  • Mutual Funds: $45.00
  • Minimum to open: $0 for a cash account.

USAA Investments Review

For more than 40 years USAA Investments has been serving investors with a disciplined approach born in the military values of its parent company. Unlike many of the firm's banking products (free checking, high yield savings accounts, insurances, etc.), USAA brokerage account is open to both the military community and the general public.

The company offers a wide selection of investments. Stocks, ETFs, options, USAA and non-USAA families of mutual funds, CDs, bonds and other fixed income products are available to customers.


USAA Investments Commissions and Minimum Requirements

USAA Investments' cost to trade stocks or ETFs is $8.95, which is well above the price charged by the majority of discount brokers. For instance, the lowest flat-rate commissions you can get today is $0, which is what Firstrade charges. Ally Invest, Charles Schwab and Fidelity are all at $4.95 for the same trades.

At USAA options trading commission has a base charge of $8.95 plus $0.75 per contract. The cost for U.S. Treasury Securities at auction is $45.

USAA's commission for trading mutual funds is $45, which is considered above the average among firm's competitors. To compare, Charles Schwab's mutual fund commission is $76, while TD Ameritrade charges $49.99. The lowest priced Firstrade and Ally Invest are both at $9.95 for the same transactions.

At USAA there is no minimum deposit requirement to open a standard brokerage account. For a mutual fund account the following initial investments required: $1,000 or $0 with $50 per month for First Start Growth Fund and Money Market Fund, $1,000 or $500 with $50 per month for Cornerstone Funds and Target Retirement Funds, and $3,000 for any other fund.


USAA Investments Trading Tools and Research Review

USAA Investments review


USAA offers a selection of basic trading tools that are easy to use. Charts, analyst ratings, real-time quotes along with companies news and snap-shots of their financials, watchlists, stocks and funds screeners are all available to help customers make better investment decisions.

USAA brokerage provides customers with in-depth reports and ratings from Argus, MarketGrader and MarketEdge.


USAA Brokerage review


The broker's mobile app provides access to customer's trading account, investment research, customer support and news. Stocks, mutual funds, ETFs and options can be traded through the app. The interface of the mobile app is clean and easy to navigate. The app is available for iPhone, iPad and Android devices.


USAA Brokerage review


USAA Brokerage Education and In-Person Guidance Services

There is an Education Center for beginners, intermediate and advanced investors. Customers have access to educational articles from Morningstar and USAA itself. For a fast and easy access, all materials are put into six categories - Retirement, Education Savings, Investing Principles, Taxes and Personal Finance. Also, there is a Classroom Section powered by Morningstar explaining trading stocks, funds and ETFs.

USAA has network of 9 local branches, called USAA Financial Centers. At these locations any banking and investment services can be done with the help of firm's representative. In-person meetings with Wealth Advisors are available by appointment.


USAA Brokerage Account Advantages

  • No account set up, maintenance or inactivity fees
  • No-fee IRAs
  • 18 commission-free ETFs from Fidelity
  • Free Dividend Reinvestment Program
  • Competitive rates on banking services, auto loans and insurance products for military members

USAA Brokerage Account Disadvantages

  • High commissions on most products
  • No advanced trading platform
  • Limited research and educational materials
  • Additional charges for each share over 1,000

Promotion Offers

No promotions at this time. See all Broker Promotions.


USAA Investments Review Summary

The company provides a broad selection of investment products, including 4- and 5-star Morningstar rated USAA mutual funds, a small selection of commission-free mutual funds and 18 commission-free ETFs from Fidelity.

Another advantage is a wide selection of fee-free individual retirement accounts for individuals, small businesses and the self-employed. USAA Investments does not charge a set-up or annual account fees.

On the flip side, USAA brokerage's trading, research and educational tools do not offer the same amount of features as many of its competitors. Absence of advanced trading platform is a major disappointment.

In summary, USAA Investment services is just too expensive and too far behind of many other discount brokerage firms.


USAA Investments Commissions and Fees

InvestmentsPrice
Stocks and ETFs $8.95 for Gold members (an additional $0.01 and $0.005 is charged for each share over 1,000)
Stocks and ETFs broker assisted $50 (an additional $0.005 is charged for each share over 1,000)
Options $8.95 + $0.75 per contract
Mutual Funds $45
All Listed Corporate Bonds $25 + $3 per bond
U.S. Treasury Securities at Auction $45

USAA Investments IRA and Account Fees

FeeAmount
IRA Setup Fee$0
Annual IRA Fee$0
IRA Termination Fee$25
Full Account Transfer Out$70
Partial Account Transfer Out$20*
Outgoing Wire Fees (Domestic)$20
Outgoing Wire Fees (International)$35

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USAA Investments reviewed by TopRatedFirms.com Rating: 3