Top 20 brokerage firms

top 20 brokerage

There are dozens of inventory brokerage homes within the United States. But 4 primary corporations stand out due to their call, offerings, their general amount of patron belongings, and the range of customers they serve. They are regularly known as the “huge four brokerages.” Each of those firms—Charles Schwab, Fidelity Investments, E*TRADE, and TD Ameritrade—incorporate the pinnacle in phrases of clients and property.

This brief article outlines the products, services, and rate shape of each brokerage. They are listed in no specific order.

Charles Schwab

Charles Schwab become based in 1971 and is based totally in San Francisco. It is one of the main investment brokerages and IRA custodian corporations in the U.S.

As of Dec. 31, 2019, Charles Schwab held $four.04 trillion in client property, with a total of 12.three million lively brokerage debts. It also operates Schwab Bank, one of the largest banks within the United States, which permits its brokerage customers to link their trading bills with a checking account. The company boasted 1.four million lively banking money owed as of the cease of 2019. Schwab clearly shines with registered funding guide (RIA) bills, where $1.nine trillion of assets under management (AUM) sits.

The corporation offers customers a series of funding merchandise inclusive of shares, mutual budget, alternate-traded finances (ETFs), money market budget, fixed income merchandise, options, futures, coverage and annuities. Clients can invest in each Schwab’s proprietary merchandise and different third-birthday party investments.

Schwab, the choices united states of america’s first real cut price brokerage, has continuously been rated one of the most inexpensive brokerage firms in the United States. Effective Oct. 2019, Schwab reduce commissions from $four.ninety five to $0.00 for all U.S.- and Canadian-indexed stocks, ETFs, options on line, and mobile trades. Options trades nevertheless have the usual $0.65 in line with-settlement charge.

The running fee ratio (OER) costs for actively managed mutual finances can range from zero.21% to one.ninety two%. Fees for passively controlled mutual budget can range from zero.02% to zero.39%. Annual portfolio control costs at Schwab begin at zero.80% for the choices Schwab Private Client account. These costs decrease for customers with better asset levels.

The firm additionally offers clients a worry-loose, passive approach to making an investment thru its robo-consultant provider called Intelligent Portfolios. The online platform provides customers with an automatic experience, giving them get entry to to a sequence of ETFs that rebalances in line with the choices client’s funding goals. The service calls for a minimal $five,000 investment and is derived with out a advisory or commission expenses.

On November 25, 2019, Charles Schwab introduced plans to gather competitor TD Ameritrade in a stock transaction worth about $26 billion. Schwab anticipates the choices sale to shut by way of the end of 2020, with full integration of the two businesses predicted to take among 18 and 36 months.

Fidelity Investments

Fidelity Investments is the country’s biggest keeper of 401(okay) retirement savings plans. Founded in 1946 as Fidelity Management & Research, the organization is based totally in Boston.

According to the choices company’s internet site, Fidelity had $7.3 trillion in consumer belongings as of March 31, 2020, with an active 30.8 million brokerage bills. The agency additionally boasted 32 million man or woman buyers and extra than 2.2 million commissionable trades in line with day.

Fidelity is the first-class preference for brokerage customers who also want to put money into Fidelity ETFs and mutual price range. The company additionally offers investments in 1/3-party merchandise.

Fidelity touts its zero account fees and no minimums to open a retail brokerage account, which includes IRAs. Following Schwab’s lead, Fidelity additionally offers commission-loose stock, ETF, and options trades. Options trades nevertheless have the usual $zero.sixty five consistent with-settlement price.

There are not any minimums to invest in Fidelity mutual budget. Fidelity does no longer rate an rate ratio price for certain proprietary mutual finances and gives hundreds of different budget with out a transaction charges.

Portfolio advisory carrier costs variety from zero.50% to 1.50% primarily based on the amount invested. Minimum investments range from $25,000 to $250,000 based totally on the choices funding options. For its automatic Fidelity Go carrier, the choices corporation prices a 0.35% advisory rate but requires no account minimum to open an account.

Through its mutual budget and different advisory services, Fidelity has tens of thousands and thousands of non-brokerage clients, some thing the choices others can not claim.


Founded in 1982, E*TRADE commenced as a retaining corporation and has converted right into a main on line cut price brokerage provider. The corporation was hit hard at some stage in the 2007-2008 financial crisis due to high exposure to subprime mortgage portfolios. Its stock dropped 86.7% in 2007 before the choices organization implemented a complete turnaround plan.

The turnaround worked and E*TRADE has emerge as a leading financial corporation for its mobile accessibility, on-line trading gear, and customizable person revel in. As of Feb. 2020, E*TRADE had greater than 5.2 million retail brokerage debts with extra than $360 billion in client property.

Just like the other pinnacle brokers, E*TRADE gives customers get right of entry to to ETFs, mutual price range, stocks, options and fixed profits merchandise. The firm additionally gives checking debts and a financial savings account with $1.25 million in FDIC coverage. Clients also can pick out a prebuilt portfolio, which offers them a diverse portfolio of mutual price range or ETFs constructed via an investment method group.

In 2019, E*TRADE joined Schwab and Fidelity in presenting no-fee buying and selling. E*TRADE cut commissions on inventory, options and ETF trades to $0 every, even as options contracts are charged $zero.sixty five every ($zero.50 with 30+ trades in keeping with region).

On Feb. 20, 2020, investment banking organization Morgan Stanley introduced it would collect E*TRADE in an all-stock transaction worth about $13 billion. The acquisition is anticipated to close in the fourth sector of 2020.

TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade turned into based in 1971 and is based in Omaha, Nebraska. The corporation became TD Ameritrade after the old Ameritrade received TD Waterhouse Group in 2006. It acquired St. Louis-based rival Scottrade in 2017. Client debts had been completely merged and included into the choices TD Ameritrade system by means of February 2018.

TD Ameritrade is considered one of the pinnacle brokerage corporations inside the U.S. because of its fee and pleasant of carrier. The company presents clients with a 24/7 customer support machine, a consumer-friendly website with mobile get admission to, research and superior trading equipment. The firm is considered a top broker for starting traders.

According to the organization website, TD Ameritrade has more than $1 trillion in patron assets. Furthermore, it boasts greater than 11 million patron accounts, with customers putting a mean of 500,000 trades per day.

Investment products variety from shares, ETFs, mutual budget, options and fixed-income investments. Clients can also pick to invest in futures and foreign exchange foreign money.

TD Ameritrade does now not require an account minimum, expenses no platform prices and requires no trade minimums. TD Ameritrade offers commission-unfastened trading, charging no commissions on on line trading of U.S. exchange-listed stocks, ETFs and options. A $0.65 in line with agreement fee applies for options trades. 

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Fidelity. “We are Fidelity.” Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

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Fidelity. “Fidelity Works.” Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

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Fidelity. “Personalized funding control.” Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

Fidelity. “Fidelity Go.” Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

Fidelity. “2020 Fidelity Investments by way of the choices numbers (as of 3/31/20),” page 1. Accessed Aug. 1.

E*TRADE. “About us.” Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

E*TRADE. “E*TRADE Financial addresses the choices potential effect of recent downgrades of asset-backed securities.” Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

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E*TRADE. “E*TRADE Financial Corporation reviews initial development of turnaround plan,” pages 1-2. Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

Morgan Stanley. “Morgan Stanley to Acquire E*TRADE, Creating a Leader in all Major Wealth Management Channels.” Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

E*TRADE. “Investment Choices.” Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

E*TRADE. “E*TRADE Bank.” Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

E*TRADE. “Prebuilt Portfolios.” Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

E*TRADE. “#1 Digital Broker E*TRADE Announces $zero Base Rate Commissions for Online Stock, ETF, and Options Trades.” Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

E*TRADE. “Pricing and Rates.” Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

TD Ameritrade. “2018 Annual Report,” pages three and 23. Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

TD Ameritrade. “TD Ameritrade Launches.” Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

TD Ameritrade. “2018 Annual Report,” pages i and four. Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.

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TD Ameritrade. “Pricing.” Accessed Aug. 1, 2020.