E*TRADE Review 2017 | Stock Trading for Beginners

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Pros / The educational section has articles, videos and webinars geared for beginning and intermediate traders.

Cons / The online stock trading fees are higher than most of the other services we reviewed.

Verdict / E*TRADE Financial offers an online stock trading service that can grow with you, with courses suitable for novices and articles for experienced traders. Although its fees are a little higher than most, its tools are comprehensive and have help features, and its mobile apps are among the best.

E*TRADE is one of the best providers of online stock trading for beginners because it has an excellent educational section with a variety of resources, including videos on how to use the e-trading platforms and webinars on the basics of stock trading to articles that analyze the current market. Its platforms are geared toward meeting both simple and advanced online stock trading needs, so it can grow with you as you gain experience.

Online stock trading can be confusing and risky, so it’s important to understand the basics before investing your hard-earned money. E*TRADE’s educational section can give you the information you need to get started, plus more advanced analysis that demystifies stocks for beginners. The resource center covers topics from beginner investor education to how to design your investment portfolio. The types of resources include things as various as articles, webinars and live seminars. One thing this online stock trading service lacks is a mock-up of the market so you can practice investing without actually investing real money. We consider this one of the most important tools in simplifying the stock market for beginners.

This stock trading service offers two online panels. The E*TRADE 360 platform is geared for the beginning stock trader and is customizable and easy. It uses charts and graphs to display your account’s progress and current activity. You can arrange the windows on the screen to show only the data that’s important to you, whether that is streaming market data, graphical displays of your account’s progress and watchlists to help you track important stocks.

The advanced E*TRADE Pro platform is designed for active day traders who place 30 or more trades per month. It has additional features, such as in-depth trading and analysis tools, streaming market data, and live CNBC updates as well as a number of charts and extended trading hours.

Both online stock trade platforms allow you to set alerts, view watch lists and receive streaming quotes. They have tools for risk evaluation, profit-and-loss estimation and stock volatility reporting. In addition, the platforms offer an automated trade feature, allowing you to schedule trades for a set time.

The platforms have help sections with an indexed knowledgebase and access to the training video. There are also content-sensitive help sections that can give you more information specific to the window of the platform you are looking at.

The online stock trade fees are somewhat higher than with other services. The stocks, options and exchange-traded funds start at $9.99. However, if you make more than 150 trades per quarter, this prices drops to $7.99. The options trade fees are also among the highest of those we reviewed.

However, E*TRADE’s other financials are competitive or, in some cases, cheaper. Broker-assisted trades cost $25, which is on the low end of fees charged by the services we reviewed. Also on the low end is the amount of money you need to invest to start an account — $500. A couple of online stock trading companies on our lineup do not require a minimum investment, but of those that do, the average is $2,300. The margin rates range more widely than those of many online trading companies we reviewed, but they are within the norm.

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Online stock trading can be confusing and risky, so it’s important to understand the basics of the market before you begin investing your hard-earned money. E*TRADE’s knowledge center can give you all the information you need to get started, plus more advanced analysis that explains stocks and investing for beginners. The knowledge center covers topics such as investor basics and how to design your investment portfolio — you can read articles, watch live and recorded webinars, and tune in for live seminars.

One thing this online stock trading software lacks is a market simulator to practice investing without actually investing real money. We consider this one of the most important tools in simplifying the stock market for beginners.

E*TRADE is one of the best trading platforms for beginners because of its excellent online customizability. The E*TRADE 360 platform is geared for the beginning stock trader and is customizable and easy to understand and use. It displays charts and graphs to show activity in your account and the progress of your investments. You can arrange the windows on the screen to only show information or graphs that are important to you, whether that is streaming market data, graphical displays of your account’s progress or watch lists to help you track important stocks.

The more advanced platform is called E*TRADE Pro. This platform is designed for active traders who place 30 or more trades per month. It has additional features such as in-depth trading and analysis tools, streaming market data, live CNBC updates and several extra charts. It also offers extended trading hours.

Both online stock trade platforms allow you to set alerts, view watch lists and receive streaming quotes. They have tools for risk evaluation, profit-and-loss estimation and stock volatility reporting. In addition, the platforms offer an automated trade feature which allows you to schedule trades for a specific time.

The platforms also have help sections with an indexed knowledgebase and access to the training video. There are also content-sensitive help sections that can give you more information specific to the window of the platform you are looking at.

E*TRADE has one of the best mobile stock trading apps for beginners. The app can work across multiple devices, including Apple and Android products and even Apple’s smartwatch. You can use the app to make trades and watch how things are developing in the market. The broker also offers the ability to research potential stocks on the app before trading. If you’re confident enough, you can even use the app to place conditional orders, which are stock trades that don’t go through unless certain market conditions are met. For example, you can set a limit order to buy a stock once it reaches a certain price.

E*TRADE’s online stock trade fees are slightly higher than some online brokers, but we thought they were still comparable. The stocks, options and exchange-traded funds start at $6.95. However, if you make more than 30 trades per quarter, this prices drops to $4.95. The fee to trade 10 option contracts, which is $17.49 is among the highest of those we reviewed, but we don’t think many beginning investors will trade options right away.

The other fees remain competitive and are, in some cases, cheaper than other brokerages we reviewed. Broker-assisted trades cost $25, which is on the low end of fees charged by the services we reviewed. Also on the low end is the amount of money you need to invest to start an account: $500. Several online stock trading brokers that we reviewed do not require a minimum investment, but of those that do, the average is $2,300. E*TRADE’s margin rates do range more widely than those of many online trading companies we reviewed. But because they are within the norm of other brokers and most beginning investors won’t be trading on margin, this didn’t have much effect on our rankings.

E*TRADE is one of the best online stock trading brokers for beginners because it has a terrific educational section full of articles, videos and webinars, plus it offers live events and 24/7 live assistance. Its trading platforms are easy to use, and the mobile app has excellent features for trading anytime, anywhere and on almost any device. More than that, this service grows with your skills, offering intermediate courses and advanced trading platforms for experienced traders. E*TRADE is a great platform for embarking on your stock trading adventure.

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Originally published at www.toptenreviews.com.