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Best Online Stock Brokers for Beginners of May 2019

NerdWalletMay 9, 2019

At NerdWallet, we strive to help you make financial decisions with confidence. To do this, many or all of the products featured here are from our partners. However, this doesn’t influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own.

Merrill Edge

on Merrill Edge's website

on Merrill Edge's website

Fees

$6.95

per trade

Account Minimum

$0

Promotion

300

free stock and ETF trades, no minimum deposit required

Pros

  • Robust third-party research.
  • Ongoing promotions.
  • Integrated with Bank of America.
  • Free trades for eligible Bank of America customers.

Cons

  • No commission-free ETFs.
  • Minimum balance requirement for active-trading platform.
Ally Invest

on Ally Invest's website

on Ally Invest's website

Fees

$4.95

per trade

Account Minimum

$0

Promotion

Up to $3,500

in cash bonus with a qualifying deposit

Pros

  • Low commissions.
  • No account minimum.
  • Strong web-based platform.
  • Robust research and tools.

Cons

  • No no-transaction-fee mutual funds.
  • No branches.
TD Ameritrade

on TD Ameritrade's website

on TD Ameritrade's website

Fees

$6.95

per trade

Account Minimum

$0

Promotion

60

days of commission-free trades with qualifying deposit

Pros

  • Large investment selection.
  • Free research.
  • High-quality trading platforms.
  • No account minimum.
  • Good customer support.

Cons

  • Higher trade commission.
  • Costly broker-assisted trades.
  • High short-term ETF trading fee.

Want to compare more options? Here are our other top picks:

Summary of Best Online Stock Brokers for Beginners of May 2019

BrokerCommissionsPromotionAccount MinimumLearn More
Merrill Edge Logo

Merrill Edge

on Merrill Edge's website

$6.95

per trade

300

free stock and ETF trades, no minimum deposit required

$0

on Merrill Edge's website

Ally Invest Logo

Ally Invest

on Ally Invest's website

$4.95

per trade

Up to $3,500

in cash bonus with a qualifying deposit

$0

on Ally Invest's website

Etrade Logo

Etrade

on Etrade's website

$6.95

per trade

Up to $600

cash credit with a qualifying deposit

$500

on Etrade's website

TD Ameritrade Logo

TD Ameritrade

on TD Ameritrade's website

$6.95

per trade

60

days of commission-free trades with qualifying deposit

$0

on TD Ameritrade's website

Schwab Brokerage Logo

Schwab Brokerage

$4.95

per trade

$100

cash bonus with a qualifying deposit

$0

Read Review
Fidelity Brokerage Logo

Fidelity Brokerage

$4.95

per trade

300

commission-free trades with a qualifying deposit

$0

Read Review
Robinhood Logo

Robinhood

$0

per trade

None

no promotion available at this time

$0

Read Review
Vanguard Brokerage Logo

Vanguard Brokerage

$7.00

per trade

None

no promotion available at this time

$0

Read Review
BrokerCommissionsPromotionAccount MinimumLearn More
Merrill Edge Logo

Merrill Edge

on Merrill Edge's website

$6.95

per trade

300

free stock and ETF trades, no minimum deposit required

$0

on Merrill Edge's website

Ally Invest Logo

Ally Invest

on Ally Invest's website

$4.95

per trade

Up to $3,500

in cash bonus with a qualifying deposit

$0

on Ally Invest's website

Etrade Logo

Etrade

on Etrade's website

$6.95

per trade

Up to $600

cash credit with a qualifying deposit

$500

on Etrade's website

TD Ameritrade Logo

TD Ameritrade

on TD Ameritrade's website

$6.95

per trade

60

days of commission-free trades with qualifying deposit

$0

on TD Ameritrade's website

Schwab Brokerage Logo

Schwab Brokerage

$4.95

per trade

$100

cash bonus with a qualifying deposit

$0

Read Review
Fidelity Brokerage Logo

Fidelity Brokerage

$4.95

per trade

300

commission-free trades with a qualifying deposit

$0

Read Review
Robinhood Logo

Robinhood

$0

per trade

None

no promotion available at this time

$0

Read Review
Vanguard Brokerage Logo

Vanguard Brokerage

$7.00

per trade

None

no promotion available at this time

$0

Read Review

More resources for new investors

Last updated on May 9, 2019

Methodology

NerdWallet's ratings for brokers and robo-advisors are weighted averages of several categories, including investment selection, customer support, account fees, account minimum, trading costs and more. Our survey of brokers and robo-advisors includes the largest U.S. providers by assets under management, plus notable and/or emerging players in the industry. Factors we consider, depending on the category, include advisory fees, branch access, user-facing technology, customer service and mobile features. The stars represent ratings from poor (one star) to excellent (five stars). Ratings are rounded to the nearest half-star.

To recap our selections...

NerdWallet's Best Online Stock Brokers for Beginners of May 2019