E*TRADE vs. TD Ameritrade: 2021 Comparison

TD Ameritrade and E*TRADE both offer free trades, strong trading platforms and a wide investment selection. Here's how they stack up.

Arielle O'SheaApr 15, 2021
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E*TRADE and TD Ameritrade often top the pile of online brokers, making it tough for investors to decide between the two. You won't pay activity or annual fees at either broker. Both offer commission-free trades of stocks, options and exchange-traded funds and have no opening account minimums.

The differences are in the details, and the decision likely comes down to the type of investor you are. If you're stuck going back and forth between E*TRADE and TD Ameritrade, look over our head-to-head comparison.

E*TRADE
NerdWallet rating 

on E*TRADE's website

E*TRADE is best for:

  • Free commissions.

  • Frequent traders.

  • Beginner investors.

  • Research and data.

  • Retirement planning assistance.

E*TRADE at a glance

Account minimum

$0

Stock trading costs

$0

Options trades

No base commission; $0.65 per contract (volume discount available)

Account fees (annual, transfer, closing, inactivity)

No annual or inactivity fee. $75 full transfer out fee; $25 partial

Number of commission-free ETFs

All ETFs trade commission-free.

Number of no-transaction-fee mutual funds

Over 4,500

Tradable securities

• Stocks • Bonds • Mutual funds • ETFs • Options • Futures

Trading platform

Two platforms available for free to all customers: • E-Trade Web • Power E-Trade

Mobile app

Two apps: • E*TRADE mobile • Power E*TRADE Available on iOS and Android.

Research and data

Free and extensive, with over eight providers available at no cost.

Customer support options (includes website transparency)

Phone, email and chat support 24/7; 30 local branches

TD Ameritrade
NerdWallet rating 

on TD Ameritrade's website

TD Ameritrade is best for:

  • Beginner investors.

  • Advanced traders.

  • Investor education/advice.

  • Fund investors.

TD Ameritrade at a glance

Account minimum

$0

Stock trading costs

$0

Options trades

No base commission; $0.65 per contract.

Account fees (annual, transfer, closing, inactivity)

No annual or inactivity fee. $75 full transfer; $0 partial transfer.

Number of commission-free ETFs

All ETFs trade commission-free.

Number of no-transaction-fee mutual funds

More than 4,200.

Tradable securities

• Stocks. • Bonds. • Mutual funds. • ETFs. • Options. • Futures. • Forex. • Foreign ADRs. • IPOs for qualified accounts.

Trading platform

Two platforms: TD Ameritrade web and thinkorswim (desktop).

Mobile app

TD Ameritrade mobile app, TDA thinkorswim app.

Research and data

Research, analysis, commentary and news available from 14 providers, including Argus, CFRA, Reuters, Vickers and Morningstar.

Customer support options (includes website transparency)

Phone support 24/7; technical phone support Monday - Friday, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Eastern. In-person at 250+ local branches. Support also available via text, Facebook Messenger, Twitter direct message, Apple Business Chat and Amazon Alexa.

» Want more options? Compare the best online brokers for stock trading

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TD Ameritrade
Webull
Interactive Brokers IBKR Lite
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
Fees

$0

per trade

Fees

$0

Fees

$0

per trade

Account Minimum

$0

Account Minimum

$0

Account Minimum

$0

Promotion

None

no promotion available at this time

Promotion

2 Free Stocks

after opening and funding an account.

Promotion

None

no promotion available at this time