The best discount stock brokers are those who offer competitive pricing, attentive customer support, and powerful trading platforms. With that said, unfortunately, a lot of discount stock brokers skimp on customer support and trading platforms to afford offering low commissions to clients. After all, if a an online brokerage is offering trades for less than the industry standard, surely costs are cut from other areas.
For 2018, out of all of the top discount stock brokers, Ally Invest is the best. Just like TD Ameritrade, Ally has 24/7 customer service, but trades are drastically cheaper ($3.95 at Ally vs $6.95 at TD) and Ally doesn’t skimp one bit with investor education or trading tools. Simply put, Ally Invest has the lowest per-trade commissions out of every broker in the United States that offers 24/7 customer service. Additionally, Ally’s full suite of trading tools available within the Ally platform add a ton of value and are 100% free.
The Top 5 Best Discount Stock Brokers for 2018
TD Ameritrade – Best for non-cost conscious
Special Offer: $300 cash and 90 days of commission-free trades when you deposit $100,000
Although it won’t come cheap, TD Ameritrade offers quality service with quality investing technology. If cost is no object, and you don’t mind paying $6.95 for every trade, TD’s free trading platforms (thinkorswim), 24/7 customer service, and access to educational market material are excellent. Keep reading…
Ally Invest – Best for all investors and traders
Special Offer: Up to $3,500 cash bonus + commission free trades for new accounts
With virtually all of the same features that the high-priced, well-known mega brokerage TD Ameritrade, Ally Invest charges a fraction of the cost for stock trades. Commissions go as low as $3.95 for active investors, and Ally’s platform is simple and highly effective. Keep reading…
TradeStation – Best for professional investors
Special Offer:All-New Pricing. Now Only $5/Trade + No Software Fees.
Since TradeStation underwent a massive rebranding effort, the once “professional trader only” brokerage is now very welcoming to all traders, but TradeStation’s PC-based trading platforms cater to an elite level of traders. Keep reading…
tastyworks – Best for highly active traders
Special Offer: New for 2018! Commissions on Equity Options Trades Capped at $10 Per Leg!
The same fine people who developed TD Ameritrade’s popular downloadable trading platform, thinkorswim, went on to make another hit piece of trading software yet again. tastyworks offers free closing trades and is an excellent choice for investors who know they will quickly enter and exit positions in the market on a day-to-day basis. Keep reading…
Firstrade – Best for overseas (non-US) investors
Special Offer: Get up to $200 in Transfer Fee Rebates
Make no mistake, Firstrade definitely doesn’t have the name recognition that most of these brokers do, but the small New York based broker offers cheap trades and usable online platforms to place them. Firstrade is best suited for international and overseas residents who still want to trade on American stock exchanges, because Firstrade is one of the few US-based brokerages that accepts foreign clients. For US residents, all of the other brokers on this list are unequivocally a stronger choice.
Finding the best discount stock broker shouldn’t be a difficult task. We hope that this guide aids in your selection. Selecting a stock broker with the lowest fees is one of the most important things you can do as an investor.Of course, it’s also important not to sacrifice quality customer service and trading platform technology, but to this day, we still do not understand why investors are complacent with choosing a broker that offers less and charges more.
Anyway, here are some other useful resources for trading stocks: