Stock trading platforms can have high costs through trade commissions, high expense ratio stocks, etc. We’ve looked at every major stock trading platform in the United States and rated which 5 we think are the best for you and your money. Take a look and find which accounts have 24/7 service, low cost mutual funds and even no commissions!

TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade is based in Omaha, Nebraska and offers some great features such as numerous tools for user research, according to Investopedia. There is also no minimum investment requirement making it easy to get started on the many platforms available for trading. The company has excellent customer service available 24 hours per day and seven days a week and you can always speak with a representative. You can reach TD Ameritrade by phone, text, email, standard mail, and on Facebook.

TD Ameritrade also offers an investor education program, which allows you to choose your materials according to your background. There are more than 4,000 fee-free mutual funds offered by TD Ameritrade and many different tradable securities. TD Ameritrade charges $6.95 per trade for stock trading.

Pros of TD Ameritrade
  • No minimum investment required
  • 24/7 customer service
  • User-friendly website
Cons of TD Ameritrade
  • High per-trade charge (flat-rate)
  • Many platforms and apps might be hard to keep track of for some people


If you are interested in mutual funds, Fidelity is a good choice. You can choose from more than 10,000 mutual funds offerings, and over 3,500 of these funds do not have transaction fees.

Fidelity’s main trading platform is Active Trader Pro, which you can gain access to by making a minimum of 36 trades in a rolling period of 12 months. There is no minimum deposit for brokerage accounts, but most of the mutual funds have minimum required deposits of $2,500. Fidelity charges a fee of $4.95 per trade for its basic trades. You can receive 300 free trades if you make a deposit of at least $50,000.

Pros of Fidelity
  • Low flat-rate fee per trade
  • Large variety of mutual funds to choose from
Cons of Fidelity
  • Access to main platform is restricted to high-volume traders
  • High minimum balance requirements for mutual funds

Merrill Edge

Merrill Edge’s parent company is Bank of America, and it works seamlessly with the bank. If you have an account with Bank of America, you are able to access both of your accounts with one login. You are also able to get free investment advice at any of BofA’s 2,100 locations.

According to Merrill Edge, new customers can receive up to 300 commission-free ETF and stock trades during the first 90 days along with a cash bonus that ranges from $100 to $600, depending on the amount of your initial deposit. The per-transaction commission fee is $6.95 per trade. People who have balances of more than $50,000 receive 30 free trades each month. If you have a balance of more than $100,000, you will receive 100 free trades each month.

Pros of Merrill Edge
  • Extensive research
  • Good customer service
  • Good commission-free promotion
Cons of Merrill Edge
  • No ETFs that are commission-free
  • Trading platforms are restricted


Etrade has a low minimum deposit requirement of $500. Like TD Ameritrade, Etrade charges a commission of $6.95 per trade but there are not any annual or account inactivity fees. If you make more than 30 trades per quarter, the commission fee is reduced to $4.95 per trade. For IRA accounts, the account minimum is waived.

You can access Etrade’s premier platform, Etrade Pro, if you either maintain a minimum balance of $250,000 or make at least 30 trades each quarter. Etrade offers 2,500 no-fee mutual funds and for-fee funds cost $19.99 in commissions. Additionally, if you make a deposit of at least $10,000, you will receive commission-free trades for 60 days.

Pros of Etrade
  • No annual or inactivity fees
  • Low minimum account balance to get started
Cons of Etrade
  • Doesn’t offer fee-free ETFs or mutual funds
  • Must meet account minimums to access some features


TradeStation is a good choice for serious traders who want a professional experience. It has a minimum trading account balance of $500. TradeStation requires a minimum account balance of $25,000 for its pattern day-trading accounts. The company charges a relatively low fee of $5 per trade but there are no fee-free ETFs available. The company has a robust desktop platform and offers extensive research tools. The company offers more than 4,900 mutual funds, but all of them charge a fee.

Pros of TradeStation
  • Great desktop platform
  • Good choice for serious investors
  • Comprehensive research tools
Cons of TradeStation
  • Doesn’t offer fee-free ETFs or mutual funds
  • Must meet account minimums to access some features