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Top 3 Best Brokers for Online Stock Trading

Updated on January 5, 2020

Choosing a Broker

Choosing an online broker can be confusing at firrist but is actually really simple once you know what you are looking for. Since the chance of any big name broker defaulting is virtually zero, the most important features to consider are fees, ease of use, and customer service.

Charles Schwab

For Innovation and Low Costs

Charles Schwab offers the greatest innovations among all brokers. They were the first to remove commissions/ticket charges on stock trades among the big firms. They are also the first to announce fractional shares of stock which no other firm has done before. This makes them the most affordable if you are looking to diversify your portfolio.

Schwab also offers free stock trades, 65 cent option trades, and the lowest expense ratio on their brand name ETFs.

Schwab's mobile app can be difficult to use but provides the most amount of research. Their web app is also slightly more difficult to use than competitors.

Customer service for Schwab is great because of their size and their numerous brick and mortar locations.

TD Ameritrade

For Beginners

TD Ameritrade is the most beginner friendly platform with the most tutorials throughout the entire app. Their trading platform, thinkorswim, is the easiest option platform to use out of all online brokers.

They have no minimum deposit, no ticket charge on stock trades, and charge 65 cents per options contract.

Their web and mobile app are intuitive and quick to pick up.

TD's customer service over the phone is one of the friendliest and most helpful.


For Low Costs (In ETFs Only)

Fidelity offers the absolute lowest costs if you are primarily investing in ETFs, which many people should do. Fidelity's proprietary ETFs cost nothing to buy, hold, and sell which is unseen at any other broker. The next lowest expense ratio for ETFs is found at Schwab or Vanguard at around 0.03%.

They also offer free stock trades and 65 cent option trades.

Fidelity's web and mobile apps are easy to use.

Fidelity's customer service is great as well but they lack brick and mortar locations.


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