Because there are so many options, choosing a broker might be challenging. While competition has forced many brokers to provide no-fee services for regularly traded assets, investors comparing different platforms will notice significant usability disparities, trading technology, account features, and other aspects.
TD Ameritrade, one of the most prominent web trading platforms, has a large selection of investment alternatives and forex trading.
You may get free stock research, data, analytics, and advice on constructing a lucrative portfolio. Combining these features with no-commission forex trading makes it clear to understand how TD Ameritrade appeals to customers of various backgrounds.
Still, what works for others might not work for you. It’s wise to research a competitive online trading platform before determining where to put your hard-earned money in the stock market.
Table of Contents
- Best-Of by Category
- Alternatives to TD Ameritrade
- Best TD Ameritrade Alternatives
- 1. M1 Finance-Best Overall
- 2. Robinhood-Best For Engagement
- 3. Betterment-Best Option For Hands-Off Investors
- 4. Wealthfront-Best For Active and Advanced Traders
- 5. Acorns-Best For Socially Responsible Investment
- 6. Fidelity-Best Investment Option
- 7. Tastyworks-Best Options Broker
- 8. Charles Schwab- Best for ETFs
- 9. Interactive Brokers-Best Option For Mutual Funds
- 10. Moomoo-Best For Scalability
- 11. Webull-Best Cryptocurrency Exchange.
- 12. TradeStation-Best Option For Professionals
- 13. E*Trade-Best Option For Beginners
- 14. Vanguard-Best Choice For Low-Cost Funds
- 15. Cash App-Best For Peer-To-Peer Payment Service
- 16. SoFi-Best User-friendly platform
- 17. Merrill Edge-Best For Educational Materials
- Buying Guide
- What is TD Ameritrade?
- Why TD Ameritrade May Not Be The Best Option For You
- What Are Online Stock Trading Platforms and How Do They Work?
- Alternatives to TD Ameritrade to Consider
- Online Stock Trading Platform
- Brokers of Many Types
- Broker resources
Best-Of by Category
|Best Overall||M1 Finance|
|Best For Engagement||Robinhood|
|Best Option For Hands-Off Investors||Betterment|
|Best For Active and Advanced Traders||Wealthfront|
Alternatives to TD Ameritrade
TD Ameritrade alternatives is a reasonable option to begin if you’re just getting started with investing. However, as time goes by, you might see that you prefer some characteristics to others. For some, convenience may be the most important factor.
Access to other investments may be an essential characteristic for others. You now have more options and a web trading platform, thanks to advancements in the financial world. There are several commission-free stock trading also that provide comfort for active traders.
Best TD Ameritrade Alternatives
M1 Finance is a cutting-edge Robo-advisor that has risen to become one of the top Robo-advisors in the United States. Hundreds of thousands of investors have put their faith in the platform. M1 Finance, based in Chicago, Illinois, and led by CEO and founder Brian Barnes, has gradually grown since 2015. It also has a live chat support web platform.
M1 Finance’s automated portfolios are the company’s mainstay. Expert-recommended portfolios are available to investors seeking wide exposure to strong and stable assets that match their financial goals and values.
Investing with M1 Finance, unlike many Robo-advisors, allows you to maintain control over your money. M1 Finance web trading platform has risen in prominence due to this level of oversight, which has caused tremors across the business.
It’s reasonable to claim that service provider has influenced how individuals invest through their investment advice. They’ve thrown down the gauntlet to traditional brokerages for TD Ameritrade alternatives for future performance, forcing them to change their methods in certain ways.
- It makes investing a breeze.
- The company uses a no-fee investing approach.
- M1 Expert Pies are high-performance pies.
- There are no financial advisers available.
- Tax-loss harvesting is not possible.
See Related: Green Century Funds Review: Is it Worth?
As people moved to work remotely after the initial wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, Robinhood, a web trading platform saw an increase in user usage. Many people who had never considered investing started doing so now because zero-fee trading is feasible and appealing.
The involvement of Robinhood is without a doubt its greatest distinguishing feature in social trading. Robinhood’s “gamified” interface incorporates visual and audible cues with each trade, providing a welcome contrast to traditional brokerages’ frequently rigid character. Robinhood, in particular, permits trading on Dogecoin, a cryptocurrency that is gaining in popularity.
Robinhood is a broker that caters to traders who prefer a straightforward and user-friendly interface. It removes all of the extraneous features that might perplex the contemporary trader, making it the ideal spot for newcomers to learn the markets and financial products.
The UI is simple and easy to use, and it’s designed to keep you focused on building your portfolio. Advanced traders may prefer more comprehensive research tools, but Robinhood provides all you need to start trading and learn the ropes.
- The interface is simple to use.
- Full-featured mobile application.
- The ability to acquire and trade cryptocurrencies.
- Compared to the majority of other services, there are fewer analytical tools.
- Only non-retirement taxable accounts are accessible.
See Related: Best Investments for Young Adults
Betterment is a Robo-advisor that enables you to “set it and forget it” for your finances. It may not be perfect for aggressive stock traders, but it is an excellent alternative for more conservative, novice, or hands-off investors.
Broker’s investment web trading platform takes the guesswork out of investing by allowing users to choose an automated investing plan. Betterment also offers a variety of account options, including taxable brokerage accounts, trading tools, standard and Roth IRAs, and even a Simplified Employee Pension IRA (SEP-IRA).
- With cutting-edge technology and competent financial advisors, you can invest without touching anything.
- Your investment balance will grow at a rate of 0.25 percent each year.
- Premium counsel and unrestricted phone engagement with financial experts
- A small number of portfolios and ETFs are available.
- There will be no trading of individual stocks, mutual funds, or ETFs.
Wealthfront, one of the largest robot advisors and a high performer in Bankrate’s evaluations, offers goal-based investing, explaining how your current financial decisions affect your future.
Wealthfront also offers tax-loss harvesting and hundreds of ETFs to choose from, allowing you to create a personalized portfolio. In addition, the company offers trading tools and pays interest on its FDIC-insured cash management account, and doesn’t collect any fees. It is among the best TD Ameritrade alternatives.
Wealthfront will be purchased by UBS in 2022 and will continue to operate under the Wealthfront brand in financial markets.
- Expense and management fee ratios are low.
- Features for cash management.
- Various account types.
- Taking advantage of tax losses.
- There are no human advisors.
See Related: Best Stock Screeners
By rounding up credit and debit transactions and investing the change in a financial portfolio, Acorns allows customers to invest spare change automatically. Acorns Early custodial accounts for children are also available on the Acorns mobile platform. Parents can invest on their children’s behalf, and when the youngster reaches the age of transfer, they can take over the account.
Acorns fees are based on the account balance and might be excessive for investors with less than $5,000 in their account in financial markets. Compared to other investment applications, Acorns has less customer service and no tax strategy.
- Options for a risk-adjusted, low-cost investing portfolio.
- Investors who use automatic savings tools are more likely to save more.
- The interface is simple to use.
- Depending on your overall balance, fees might be rather significant.
- There is no provision for tax-loss harvesting or access to human counsel.
- Unlike other leaders in the robot-advisor field, you must pay a charge to use the checking account.
See Related: Important Pros and Cons of Cryptocurrency
Due to the client-centric approach, Fidelity has been the top overall brokerage account for several years. They have been professional traders. Other brokers are closing the gap, but we still recommend Fidelity to investors. Fidelity keeps expenses low, provides great tools to assist clients in managing and evaluating their portfolios, and continuously develops its platforms to simplify things for investors and traders who refuse to pay for order volume.
For example, Fidelity’s cash sweep of uninvested capital into money market funds provides customers with a second source of modest returns in their portfolios. Fidelity also provides good order execution and returns a portion of the stock borrowing program‘s revenue to clients. These advantages and Fidelity’s dedication to reducing consumer expenses while increasing returns are the primary reasons it remains the top pick for the finest overall online brokerage.
- Fidelity orders are completed at a lower price than the national best bid or offer in 86.17 percent of cases.
- Asset scanners and thorough research.
- Money is deposited into a money market fund regularly.
- Educational opportunities abound.
- To get the tools and information you need, you must use Fidelity’s online platform and Active Trader Pro.
- Non-U.S. Citizens and residents are unable to open a bank account.
See Related: What is RSI in Stocks & Technical Analysis?
Tastyworks continues to be quite competitive on price when it comes to trading options. The customizable tools, instructional information, and easy platforms make it the broker for options traders. Tastyworks is the broker you choose once you’ve determined that options trading is all you want to do, not the one you start with. Few other professional traders are as well-suited to this duty as Tastyworks. During trading sessions, options traders will find all of the tools and analyses they want, and they may spend their downtime reading options-related literature to prepare for the next session.
- You’ll have access to all of the tools you require.
- The charting has been modified to options, allowing you to assess the combined position’s risk profiles.
- Original, options-focused material in a fantastic collection.
- Not A good choice by many users.
- There is no such thing as fixed-income trading (outside of ETFs that contain bonds).
See Related: How to Invest in EV Charging Stations
Charles Schwab is a full-service investing business that scores well in many areas. Schwab is consistently at the top of our categories, only to be beaten out by more targeted offers. Even still, Schwab remains the top choice when it comes to ETFs.
It is due to the quality of its ETF screener and the overall quality of its comprehensive product, which includes ETF investing education and portfolio analysis tools for ordinary investors.
Schwab makes investing in ETFs simple while also offering outstanding research and multi-criteria screening for clients who want more information before deciding. Because of all of these characteristics, Charles Schwab is the finest brokerage account for ETF investors.
Schwab’s options are a little pricy outside of ETFs, and futures are traded on a different platform—something to keep in mind if you plan to trade in those products.
- The StreetSmart Edge ETF screener covers over 150 criteria.
- The StreetSmart Edge platform is adaptable and dependable.
- Beyond the ETF-specific features, Schwab is an outstanding broker in general.
- Investors should use StreetSmart Edge to get the best ETF screener.
See Related: Best Robotics Stocks to Buy Now
Interactive Brokers is a full-featured trading platform that gives you low-cost access to various assets. You may acquire assets from all over the world from the comfort of your own home or office, thanks to your access to over 135 global markets. Trading in options, futures, foreign exchange, and mutual funds is also available, and most traders will not be charged a fee on any buy or sell.
IBKR is mostly for experienced traders and investors; however, now that IBKR Lite allows for free transactions, even casual traders may try out the platform.
IBKR’s Mutual Fund Marketplace is one of the largest, containing funds from Allianz, American Funds, BlackRock, Fidelity, Franklin Templeton, Invesco, MFS, PIMCO, and many more. Furthermore, the Marketplace is unbiased; they do not sell proprietary funds, so there is no conflict of interest.
Using their Mutual Fund Inventory Search Tool, you may search for mutual funds by country of residence, the commission charged, fund type, or fund family.
- All of the PC version functionality is available on the mobile app.
- Low-margin rates are on the rise.
- Simple to use and improved screening choices are superior to before.
- For new investors, the trading interface might be scary.
See Related: 15 Reasons Why You Need ESG Investing
While the advent of trading applications is a positive trend since it introduces a new generation of investors to the markets, many instances only give a rudimentary basis. As your investment career progresses, you’ll want access to advanced tools while still having the ease of trading applications, and you may check into Moomoo’s scalability.
Moomoo is a user-friendly software that caters to new investors. It does, however, provide sophisticated capabilities for free, such as real-time market bids and transactions. You can also use the site to create detailed technical charts to help you plan your next trade. Moomoo may be downloaded immediately to your phone, tablet, or mobile device.
- There are about 8,000 equities that may be sold short.
- There is no live chat assistance.
See Related: Best Banks for Low-Income Earners
Webull is an online and mobile brokerage that caters to Generation Z investors who grew up in the digital age and had no memories of the analog period. Webull is a no-fee platform that offers many handy features that don’t demand a minimum balance.
Cryptocurrencies are Webull’s most valuable asset. Webull provides technical and fundamental analytical tools to help you make informed decisions. You can also employ leverage of up to 4:1 on margin trades and 2:1 on overnight positions. Webull is commonly regarded as one of the most effective Robinhood substitutes.
- There are no costs for account maintenance or software platform usage.
- There are no fees to establish or maintain an account.
- A trading platform features technical and fundamental analysis tools that are easy to use.
- It doesn’t allow you to trade mutual funds, bonds, or over-the-counter stocks.
See Related: Best Impact Investing Books to Read
Even though the epidemic has increased investor interest, the bulk of these newbies will not pursue day trading as a vocation. TradeStation is an ideal platform for the brave few who dare to make this change.
TradeStation has a decades-long track record of aiding experienced traders through the peaks and troughs of the financial markets, thanks to access to the most powerful trading tools and insightfully detailed research. TradeStation offers bulk pricing for high-volume trading if you trade for a living, which is a major benefit.
Advanced traders who want a full platform should use TradeStation. This TD Ameritrade alternatives brokerage provides a wide choice of investable assets and regular and skilled traders like the firm’s extensive collection of analytical tools.
In a word, TradeStation offers the greatest toolset for aggressive traders in the retail broker industry as being TD Ameritrade alternative, but it suffers from excessive margin rates, weak short locates, and bad customer support.
On the plus side, their platform includes great graphing, a scanner that competes with scanners that cost $100 per month, an easy-to-learn scripting language that allows you to easily backtest methods, etc.
We think TradeStation is great for the appropriate kind of aggressive trader who can put up with mediocre customer support and a few minor issues. It’s a deal. You’re giving up some comforts that a broker like Fidelity would provide in exchange for considerably superior technology for active trading.
- Professional-grade tools and a comprehensive trading platform.
- A diverse choice of tradable securities is available.
- Due to the confusing pricing structure, new traders will poorly comprehend what they pay.
- The cluttered structure makes it more difficult to navigate TradeStation’s platform than it should be.
See Related: Best Apps for Automatic Investing in ETFs
E*Trade is an online trading pioneer that offers a wide range of investment alternatives, ranging from basic online brokerage accounts for beginning investors to complex investing and trading options for seasoned investors.
Online trading in U.S.-listed stocks, ETFs, and options have no fees, making it simple for beginning investors to develop their portfolios. Managed portfolios are available for individuals who want additional assistance, with yearly management fees starting at 0.3 percent of assets invested.
- Trading on the move using a mobile app, personalized stock screening, and third-party research.
- Annual fees as low as 0.30 percent of invested assets can be found in professionally managed portfolios.
- For mutual funds that aren’t on the no-transaction-charge list, there is a $19.99 transaction fee.
- A $500 minimum deposit is required to create an automated investing account.
- In comparison to its competitors, it has a high margin rate.
See Related: Awesome Impact Investing Examples to Know
Vanguard is unique among internet trading platforms in that its fundholders control it. It implies that Vanguard’s profits are utilized to reduce costs on its funds.
Vanguard specializes in index mutual funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs), while they also provide active mutual funds, stock trading, CDs, and other services.
Vanguard’s Personal Advisor Services connects investors with a financial advisor who analyses their investment goals and creates a tailored investment strategy.
- Fundholders own the company.
- Pricing is low across the board.
- A wide range of index funds is available.
- Investors and financial professionals are matched through Personal Advisor Service.
- Data and studies are scarce.
- Option trading commissions are complicated.
See Related: Best Real Estate Investing Software Solutions
Cash App is a one-of-a-kind peer-to-peer payment service that doubles as a stockbroker. Consider a cross between Venmo and Robinhood: you can send and receive money, spend a debit card from your account, and trade stocks in the same app.
On the other hand, Cash App is not a specialist investment platform, and its limited range of stocks will leave more experienced traders wanting. At the time of writing, Cash App only had 1,600 stocks available.
- Investing in fractional shares is possible.
- Signing up and using the service is simple.
- A limited number of investment products and account types are available.
- Lack of dependable customer service.
See Related: History of Impact Investing: 8 Things to Know
SoFi makes up for its lack of complex features with cost and a user-friendly platform. Due to the lack of costs, low account minimums, and free financial planning from the firm’s financial advisers, the company offers a great trading platform for novices. It also gives consumers the option of doing their own investing or employing a Robo-advisor to automate the process. However, the trading restrictions drove it to the bottom of our priority list. It also replaces the best TD Ameritrade alternatives.
- There is a $1 account minimum and a 0% yearly administration charge for its Robo-advisor account.
- Financial guidance is available at no cost.
- There are a limited number of investing alternatives.
- There will be no tax-loss harvesting.
Merrill Edge’s clients have access to a wide range of educational materials and research tools. The company’s fees and margin rates, on the other hand, are significantly higher than those of its rivals, making it a good alternative for long-term investment rather than active trading.
- Customer care is available 24 hours a day through phone and lives chat assistance.
- Third-party research and educational resources abound.
- Fees for financial adviser services are rather high.
- The functionality of the mobile app is insufficient.
See Related: How to Invest in Wind Energy | Best Wind Stocks
What is TD Ameritrade?
TD Ameritrade is a full-service brokerage business for eligible account holders that provides access to a diverse range of products, including stocks, bonds, mutual funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), options, futures, and currencies, foreign ADRs, and initial public offers (IPOs).
TD Ameritrade has continually distinguished itself for its relevance for both beginning and expert investors, despite fierce competition in the brokerage industry. Its personalized instruction is tailored to your investment style and objectives, and it provides you with the knowledge you need to stay on track.
Why TD Ameritrade May Not Be The Best Option For You
TD Ameritrade has a broad appeal, yet it may not meet your requirements. While TD Ameritrade has many investment options, it does not cover everything. For example, while the firm allows you to participate in bitcoin futures, it does not enable you to buy digital tokens.
Again, if you’re a younger investor who loves next-generation asset classes, this may be a drawback. The educational materials provided may not be useful to you, or you may find them too stuffy. Alternatives to TD Ameritrade might provide a lot more enjoyment.
What Are Online Stock Trading Platforms and How Do They Work?
When you join an online stock trading platform, you usually invest using a mobile app or a secure website on a desktop computer.
You may fund an account – formally known as a brokerage account – by connecting it to a bank checking or savings account. After that, you can trade stocks, bonds, ETFs, and occasionally more exotic investments such as options and currencies.
These platforms often have search bars that allow you to look for the ticker or name of stocks, funds, and other assets offered on the site. You may acquire your chosen amount of shares with only a few clicks once you’ve decided what to invest in.
Most online stock trading systems include various research tools for evaluating equities and market activities. Many investing applications, for example, have stock screeners that let you locate stocks based on criteria like market size, profits per share, and, in the case of mutual funds, expense ratio.
Alternatives to TD Ameritrade to Consider
TD Ameritrade is the gold standard for broad access to financial choices. Furthermore, this brokerage is a good fit whether you’re an experienced day trader or just getting started in the capital markets.
Investing is not a one-size-fits-all undertaking. Because trading isn’t your first goal, you could choose a platform that prioritizes ease and intuitiveness. Alternatively, you may be considering a job on Wall Street. TD Ameritrade may not offer what you’re looking for in any scenario.
Make sure you know what you’re attempting to accomplish. After that, weigh the benefits and drawbacks of each brokerage to choose which one best meets your objectives and tactics. You should select a brokerage that works with your investments because everyone is different. If your objectives change, contact your broker for assistance or move to a broker who is more suited to your needs.
Investors use online platforms to trade securities, get market information, and more. In addition to their online trading tools, several brokers also provide human investment planning guidance.
Online Stock Trading Platform
Purchase and sell assets from your computer or smartphone using an online stock trading platform. Financial institutions provide these accounts, which are also known as brokerage accounts.
When you set up an account and deposit cash, it joins you with certain other stock market participants, enabling you to trade stocks, bonds, and other financial assets like ETFs.
While all brokerages now enable users to trade online (rather than calling a trader on the stock exchange floor), some online stock trading platforms operate entirely online, while others combine stock trading with conventional financial counselors.
See Related: Ways to Invest in Cobalt (Sustainably)
Brokers of Many Types
Stockbrokers may be divided into bargain and full-service brokers, even though each trading platform is unique. Self-directed portfolios are offered by discount brokers and demand a hands-on investment strategy in which you choose your stocks, bonds, and ETFs.
You have total control over your securities and when you want to swap them with a bargain broker. Discount brokers include Robinhood and Webull. These brokers usually have low or no account minimums, and they may eliminate part of their costs if you execute a specific number of free trades each month, making them perfect for active or regular traders.
Full-service brokers provide a more traditional approach. These services often connect you with a financial consultant who may advise which stocks to buy or even manage your whole portfolio for you and provide online access to your investments.
Many full-service brokers offer retirement and estate planning, wealth management, and tax planning. As a result, account minimums and fees are significantly higher, making them best suited for high-net-worth investors seeking a more personalized level of care.
When hiring a broker, there are a few things to consider. Investor-friendly features and fees that traders can easily justify are available on the best online stock trading websites. We looked at the following factors to come up with a list of companies that consumers should consider this year:
Regarding fees, you’re in luck: most online brokers have slashed their trading commissions on stocks and ETFs to $0.
Consider the broker’s degree of advice and research tools, the quality of the digital trading software, and the broker’s ability to execute trades swiftly and reliably, among other factors.
Ultimately, the account you desire will be determined by your particular investment strategy, which will include how frequently you want to trade and whether you’re a novice or a seasoned trader. We looked at how each investing platform catered its services to a specific type of customer.
Finally, deciding on the best brokerage platform boils down to who you are now as an investor and who you want to be in the future. The ranking might help you narrow down the field once you’ve answered these key questions.
If you’re just getting started as an ambitious options trader, you might be better off looking at the selections for options traders rather than the general best for beginners’ picks.
However, as you gain experience as an investor in the search for TD Ameritrade alternatives, you may discover that your objectives and approach to the market have shifted. Maybe you want a more sophisticated platform with more assets and exchanges, or perhaps you want to simplify things and adopt a more passive strategy.
The benefit of the high degree of competition in the brokerage industry is the large number of brokers who can meet your demands, no matter how they vary over time as the best Td Ameritrade alternatives.
- Best Impact Investing Books to Read
- Benefit Corporation vs B Corp: What’s the Difference?
- Important Pros and Cons of Electric Vehicles
Kyle Kroeger, esteemed Purdue University alum and accomplished finance professional, brings a decade of invaluable experience from diverse finance roles in both small and large firms. An astute investor himself, Kyle adeptly navigates the spheres of corporate and client-side finance, always guiding with a principal investor’s sharp acumen.
Hailing from a lineage of industrious Midwestern entrepreneurs and creatives, his business instincts are deeply ingrained. This background fuels his entrepreneurial spirit and underpins his commitment to responsible investment. As the Founder and Owner of The Impact Investor, Kyle fervently advocates for increased awareness of ethically invested funds, empowering individuals to make judicious investment decisions.
Striving to marry financial prudence with positive societal impact, Kyle imparts practical strategies for saving and investing, underlined by a robust ethos of conscientious capitalism. His ambition transcends personal gain, aiming instead to spark transformative global change through the power of responsible investment.
When not immersed in the world of finance, he’s continually captivated by the cultural richness of new cities, relishing the opportunity to learn from diverse societies. This passion for travel is eloquently documented on his site, ViaTravelers.com, where you can delve into his unique experiences via his author profile.