Online Broker Review
Ready to start trading online but don’t know which online broker is best? Here is my honest online broker review based on three online brokers I have used recently: Robinhood, Ally Invest, and TD Ameritrade.
Online brokers (sometimes referred to as discount brokers) offer low fees to buy and sell. They are able to do this because they leave all the research as well as buying and selling up to you. Some don’t even have a physical office to visit.
Broker Review: TD Ameritrade
TD Ameritrade is the most expensive of the three charging $6.95 per trade. For your money comes a trading platform that was voted best trading platform for 2018 by Klipinger.
TD Ameritrade is for the advanced trader. They have a web platform but the real goodies come with their Think or Swim platform. You download the platform to your desktop and if a non-professional, get access to real-time quotes.
TD Ameritrade has so many features, it could take you years to figure them all out. Great platform for executing trades and doing research. TD Ameritrade also allows you to paper trade and test your trading ideas to see if they are profitable.
Broker Review: Ally Invest
If you don’t need all the features of TD Ameritrade, but still want real-time quotes, low commission fee and fast execution of trades, Ally Invest may be the best choice at $3.95 commission per trade.
Ally Invest is for the intermediate to advanced investor who wants to trade stocks and options. Ally Invest has an excellent set of tools and educational material for trading options, the best of the three as far as I’m concerned.
If you want to trade penny stocks, I suggest you avoid Ally Invest. They won’t let you trade them by yourself (at the time of this writing they didn’t, things may have changed). You have to call in and speak with a broker which is a bit of an inconvenience.
Broker Review: Robinhood
Robinhood is for the beiginner, or those with a small portfolio. With Robinhood you don’t get all the bells and whistles, just a plain simple platform that allows to you buy and sell stocks, ETF’s, and options.
Trades are commission free so you can buy as little as 1 share. Perfect for someone who has never traded. Build your confidence and when your portfolio, skill, and confidence gets better, you can move up to the more powerful platforms mentioned above.
I love the free commissions, but the biggest drawback is they don’t provide the basic Bid and Ask prices to help when choosing what prices to buy and sell at.