ETRADE is a pioneer in the discount brokerage market. They’ve been around since 1982, and are arguably the most popular and well known of all online brokers. Over the years they’ve continued to impress the pundits and regularly receive awards in excellence from the major reviewers like Smart Money and Barron’s.
What they offer: $9.99 trades (less if you’re an active trader), access to a wide range of mutual funds (7,600+), free education resources, free access to research, 24/7 customer service (and it’s quick), and an easy to use platform.
The Verdict: Over 2.3 million people already use E*Trade, so you’re going with a market leader and you know what you’re getting – a service you can trust. E*Trade can be especially good for you if you keep a high balance ($50,000 +), make over 150 trades per quarter and are looking for a wide range of investment products.
Where to join: Click here to open an account with E*Trade and trade FREE for 60 days (special offer)
In-Depth E*Trade Review
Setting Up An Account
The entire sign up process is online – it takes about 10-15 mins and is 100% paperless. Be sure to have your details handy (address, SSN or Tax ID #, employer name and address). No initial minimum deposit is required for retirement, custodial, or employee stock plan accounts.
- $9.99 per stock trade
- $9.99 plus $0.75 per options contract and plus $2.99 per futures contract).
- Expect to pay $45 extra for broker assisted trades.
- $25 per quarter maintenance fees if your account is less than $5,000 or you make less than 2 trades
- Minimum to open an account is $500 (you must deposit within 60 days of opening an account).
- $2 per paper statement, $60 for ACAT out.
- E*Trade is great for being able to customize your own trading platform to suit your needs.
- Trading platform is intuitive and easy to navigate.
- Their mobile app tools are also top-of-the-line.
- On a side note, E*Trade also offers banking services such as high interest savings accounts, checking accounts and mortgage accounts.
Probably E*Trade’s biggest strength. They offer one of the widest ranges of foreign and domestic investment products available from online brokers, which is ideal if you want to balance your portfolio with a mix ETFs, mutual funds, stocks, bonds, and fixed income investments. Check out their website to see their updated range of investments.
Ease of Use:
- E*Trade website and platform in general is very intuitive, user friendly and easy to navigate.
- Choice between a variety of platforms (web based, desktop, and mobile) allows flexibility to pick the one you like best.
24/7 phone and email support is responsive, but there is no Live Chat support, which is a negative because it makes life so much easier.
- 5/5 stars from Smartmoney (2010) for Trading Tools, Customer Service and Banking Services.
- 4/5 stars from Barrons for Long Term Investing Tools and International Trading (2010).
The Final Word:
E*Trade is used by millions of people from over 40 countries worldwide. They’ve certainly had a head start in learning a thing or two about running a good online brokerage. E*Trade stands apart by offering a wide range of investment products, a fantastic mobile trading app, and solid customer service. The only possible downside is the relatively high commissions you’ll pay if you’re not an active trader. But then again, if you want to go with a trusted name, sometimes you’ve got to pay…
Disclosure: Some of the links included in our reviews are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive a commission.