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E*TRADE, a pioneer in online brokerage, has grown to be one of the most recognizable names in the industry. Its services cater to a range of traders, from beginners dipping their toes into investing, to the veterans navigating complex strategies. However, the question of whether E*TRADE is the best broker for you depends on your unique needs and preferences. This comprehensive review will explore the pros and cons of E*TRADE to help you make an informed decision.

Pros of E*TRADE

  1. Streamlined Order Entry: E*TRADE shines in its effortless order entry process. The platform’s user-friendly interface ensures a seamless and streamlined experience, making it incredibly approachable, especially for those new to the trading scene.
  2. Reliable Order Executions: E*TRADE provides satisfactory order execution. The platform is engineered to execute orders promptly and efficiently, minimizing slippage and striving to offer the most optimal prices at the time of transaction.
  3. Competitive Trading Costs: With a pricing structure designed for affordability, E*TRADE offers a relatively low-cost trading experience. By adopting a zero-commission model for online stock, ETF, and options trades, it becomes an attractive option for cost-conscious traders.
  4. Better Availability for Short Selling: Unlike many competing online brokers, E*TRADE has a commendable availability of shares for short selling, providing a significant advantage for traders who frequently incorporate short selling into their trading strategies.
  5. Power E*TRADE Mobile App: E*TRADE’s newly updated mobile app, Power E*TRADE, provides a far more user-friendly and robust experience than previous versions. The app integrates advanced features with an intuitive design, making it easy for traders to stay connected with the market on the go.
  6. Easy Fund Transfers: Like TD Ameritrade, E*TRADE simplifies the process of transferring funds in and out of your trading account. This feature is a valuable convenience that helps maintain fluidity in your trading activities and personal finances.

Cons of E*TRADE

  1. Platform Fee: A significant disadvantage of E*TRADE is its platform fee. Although its primary platform is free, traders who want to access the advanced functionalities of E*TRADE Pro need to pay a monthly fee, which can be a significant burden for smaller accounts aiming to minimize trading expenses.
  2. Subpar Customer Service: E*TRADE has received criticism for its less-than-stellar customer service. Many traders have reported lengthy wait times and inadequate responses, creating a negative customer service experience.
  3. Outdated Charting Platform: While E*TRADE Pro offers a range of charting capabilities, it falls short compared to more recent, sophisticated platforms. Traders seeking cutting-edge charting technology may find E*TRADE Pro’s offerings inadequate.

Additionally, E*TRADE provides limited access to international markets, which might be a drawback if your trading strategy extensively involves foreign markets.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, E*TRADE presents a compelling blend of intuitive order entry, reliable order executions, affordable trading, enhanced mobile experience, and simplified fund transfers. These features make it a solid choice for a wide range of traders. However, the platform fee, poor customer service, and outdated charting capabilities can be significant drawbacks, particularly for small accounts and traders seeking state-of-the-art charting tools.

As with any trading platform, E*TRADE has its strengths and weaknesses. Therefore, it’s crucial to weigh what features and services are most essential to your trading strategy before choosing a broker. Remember, the ideal trading platform is one that aligns with your trading style, experience level, and financial goals. With this review’s insights, you can make an informed decision on whether E*TRADE is the right broker for you.

About the Author
119 posts
Joe Kelly

Joe Kelly is a versatile entrepreneur with a passion for day trading, product design, and real estate investing. As the creator of My Investing Club's flagship course, the Day Trading Jumpstart Accelerator, Joe has made a name for himself in the financial world since he began trading the market in 2015. Specializing in options, large cap day trading, and swing trading, Joe possesses a wealth of knowledge and experience in small cap stocks, which was his primary focus for the first five years of his trading career. This expertise has led him to mentor countless individuals, sharing his insights and strategies for success. When Joe is not busy making strides in the financial sphere, he can be found cooking up some of the most delectable steaks and smoking mouth-watering, Texas-style BBQ. A man of many talents, Joe enjoys playing guitar and woodworking in his spare time. Family and outdoor activities play a significant role in Joe's life. He loves spending quality time with his wife and children, engaging in a wide array of outdoor pursuits such as fishing, bike riding, hiking, swimming, skiing, tubing, and volleyball. Joe's enthusiasm for everything outdoors and his diverse range of interests make him a well-rounded individual, both in the professional and personal realms.