Stock investors, go the mutual fund route with names like Charles Schwab, Fidelity, T. Rowe Price, and Vanguard, you can add some flexibility to your portfolio at low transaction rates, you may also be interested in signing up with an online discount broker.
This is a list of low cost online stock brokers:
Best Online Stock Brokers Offering Cheap Stock Trades
E*TRADE If you need a broker assistance, they’ll will charge you $45 a trade and an online commission.
E*TRADE brokers are not cheap compare to the list here, with rates ranging from $7.99 to $12.99 per trade (depending frequency of trading). E*Trade ranked #1 Online Broker 2011 by tradeWISER. 2011 E*TRADE Offer: Trade free for 60 days (500 free trades max)
Trade King offers $4.95 per stock trade regardless of the size of your account balance. They have some helpful tools and calculators to help customers out with determining their target prices for trades. They’ve got seminars and tools to help you out. They also have great customer service, with a live representative at the ready via phone, email or IM through their web site! They’re quite easy to reach.
Trade King has won some great accolades from the personal finance community, having received the following awards and honors: Smart Money ranks TK as #1 in customer service in 2008, the best discount broker in its annual Broker Survey of US Brokers (twice in a row!) and the highest ranking of 4 stars in Barron’s 12th Annual Survey of Best Browser-Based Online Brokers.
Options House has very affordable commissions, only $2.95 per stock trade. Mutual fund trades are $9.95 (same as Zecco and Firs trade), they offer Live Chat via their site and they can be reached over the phone. OptionsHouse was ranked the Best Broker for Discounted Trading 2010 by tradeWISER and offers $3.95 flat fee trades alongside two flexible rates for options trading. 2011 Offers: Receive 100 free trades with any new account!
Zecco offers free trades for accounts with a minimum of $25,000 or who trade actively. Maintain the $25,000 balance or make 25 trades per month and you’ll get 10 free trades each month. With a lower account balance, the trades are only $4.50 per transaction. For commissions on mutual funds that are not on the no-load list, Zecco charges $10 per trade.
Scottrade charges $7 per stock trade online, they will charge for phone and broker assisted trades. For mutual funds with an NTF designation (no load and no transaction fee), your transactions are completely free. However, no load funds that aren’t in the NTF program have a fee of $17 for each trade, whether you buy, sell or exchange. Something similar is applied to loaded funds and broker assisted transactions with mutual funds, so you’ll get the best deal by sticking to managing your portfolio online.
They offer some support for those who need financial advice, Smart Money chose them as the #1 online broker for 2007 and 2008. They also get 4 stars from Barron’s Online Broker Survey.
Trade Monster they are new online brokerage with roots in the options world. They offer a simple pricing structure for stocks $7.50 a trade. Mutual funds and bonds are $15.00 per trade (only upon purchase) with no fees upon sale. For options, the commissions are tiered, but appear to be cheaper than other brokers, especially when more contracts are involved. They are cheaper options broker than Trade King or OptionsXpress if you intend to be a high volume options trader. They’ve been honored by Barron’s with a 4 star rating despite being new!
Thinkorswim was rated the #1 Online Broker 2010 by Barron’s*. Offering one of the best platforms for active traders. Stock trades are a flat-rate $9.99 per trade or $.015 per share with a $5.00 minimum.