menu
Open an account today. Get Started
Advertisement
Overall

Capital One Investing is a great fit for investors seeking automatic investment plans, and customers of Capital One 360. It also offers casual investors an easy way to research and trade.

Commissions & Fees
Offering of Investments
Platforms & Tools
View More
Best in Class
  • Banking
arrow_drop_down arrow_drop_up

By Blain Reinkensmeyer on February 16th, 2016 | Last updated: December 6th, 2016

Dislikes
  • No trade platform
  • Limited offering of trade tools
  • After-hours trading not supported
  • No complex options
Special Offer Get up to a $600 bonus when you fund your new account - Learn More


Capital One Investing Review

February 16th, 2016: This Review has been updated to reflect the latest research and results from the 2016 Review.

Capital One Investing started out as ShareBuilder back in 1996 (Capital One acquired ShareBuilder in 2011) with the goal of making investing affordable and easy.

Today, in 2016, Capital One Investing continues to thrive, thanks to its automatic investments, pleasant customer service, and clean website.

Commissions & Fees

Capital One Investing is the only broker to offer its customers a separate rate to take advantage of discounted automatic investments.

Under the broker’s base commission structure, regular stock trades cost $6.95, options trades run at $6.95 plus $0.75 per contract (complex, multi-legged options are not supported), and automatic investments are $3.95 each.

Compared to the big-name brokers such as TD Ameritrade, ETRADE, Scottrade, Fidelity Investments, and Charles Schwab, Capital One Investing is less expensive. However, compared to other discount brokers such as OptionsHouse, TradeKing, and the like, Capital One Investing is more expensive.

Capital One InvestingE*TRADETD AmeritradeScottradeOptionsHouse
Stock Trade Fee (flat)$6.95$9.99$9.99$7.00$4.95
Options Base Fee$6.95$9.99$9.99$7.00$4.95
Options Per Contract Fee$0.75$0.75$0.75$0.70$0.50
Mutual Fund Trade Fee$19.95$19.99$49.99$17.00$20.00
Broker Assisted Trades Fee$19.95$25.00$44.99$32.00$25.00
Commissions & Fees 3/5 1.5/5 1/5 2/5 4.5/5

Where Capital One Investing comes out on top in a big way is with its automatic investments (also known as the ShareBuilder Plan), giving customers the ability to automatically buy shares of stocks, ETFs, or select mutual funds each month (all automatic investments take place on Tuesdays). It is this simplicity that makes Capital One Investing so attractive for investors who want to "set it and forget it" with their IRAs.

Customer Service

Capital One Investing's phone customer service was consistently an enjoyable experience, and we were impressed. Reps were always enthusiastic, professional, and helpful. We were on hold for more than one minute only once and the reps were clearly well trained, always making sure to conclude all calls on a warm closing note.

Phone aside, email support yielded mostly positive experiences. Email testing yielded three perfect 100% test scores but also one test with a score of less than 50%. We received replies to more than half of all emails in less than one hour, while one took nearly five days. Live chat support had similar results. In the end, Capital One Investing had more highlights than lowlights across the board; however, compared to the rest of the industry, the broker finished in the middle of the pack. See: Best Brokers for Customer Service.

Ease of Use

The shining star in Capital One Investing’s arsenal is the website's ease of use. Everything, from navigation to placing trades and performing research, is an effortless experience. The website boasts a very clean design, and it is clear Capital One Investing takes its time before launching anything new to ensure top-notch user experience.

If there is one recommendation we would make for Capital One Investing in 2016, it would be to create a customizable dashboard for customers to replace the current boring My Accounts overview page.

Research

For research, we found Capital One Investing 's coverage of equities, ETFs, and mutual funds to be very strong, thanks to their use of Morningstar as their primary provider. Although the broker purposely supports little more than 1,000 mutual funds for trading (focus on quality over quantity), we were impressed by the depth of research provided.

Capital One Investing quote screen

After pulling up Apple (AAPL) in the research area, we were pleased to see four third-party research reports available for us to read. To dig deeper into research, customers have ability to build custom side-by-side stock comparisons and compare fundamental data.

Capital One Investing’s research offering extends beyond vetting potential trades – it also includes client portfolios. The Portfolio Allocation and Analysis tools allow customers to assess their portfolio allocation, returns, and even break down their real equity exposure by fund. Full transparency into the client’s portfolio is something few other brokers provide.

Capital One Investing Portfolio Analysis

Platforms & Tools

Capital One Investing does not offer a formal desktop or web-based trading platform; instead, it relies on its website. Put simply, there isn’t anything for advanced traders to be excited about because active traders are not Capital One Investing's target market. See: Best Brokers for Platforms & Tools.

That said, Capital One Investing does have its fair share of innovative tools for regular investors. Our favorite is the PortfolioBuilder tool, which launched in 2014. Using PortfolioBuilder, customers can create their own diversified portfolio with up to eight ETFs, aligning their investment style and long-term goals. Once a new portfolio is compiled, it can be purchased for a single flat rate of $18.95.

To make selling a seamless experience, in 2015 PortfolioBuilder was updated to apply the same flat $18.95 rate for sales, instead of charging $6.95 for each security being sold. Users can even see the percentage of each investment that went towards the total commission.

Capital One Investing Portfolio Builder

Tools aside, as far as investments go, Capital One Investing has a mixed offering. Complex options are not supported, nor are after-hours trades or shorting. However, Capital One Investing, through Capital One, is the only company (alongside Bank of America Merrill Edge) to offer credit and debit cards, checking and savings accounts, as well as home mortgages. Through Capital One 360, the company also supports universal login for customers for easy account management.

Closing Thoughts

Capital One Investing shines in ease of use; it performs very well in research and customer service, but suffers in its efforts to appease the tool-hungry active trader.

Capital One Investing should only continue to thrive in doing what it does best, offering a great solution for casual investors and those seeking automatic investments, as well as giving current Capital One 360 customers an easy way to access the markets.


Blain Reinkensmeyer

Reviewed by Blain Reinkensmeyer Blain heads research at StockBrokers.com and has been involved in the markets since placing his first stock trade back in 2001. He developed StockBrokers.com's annual review format six years ago which is respected by broker executives as the most thorough in the industry. Currently maintaining funded accounts with more than a dozen different US regulated online brokers, he's executed thousands of trades through his career and enjoys sharing his experiences through his personal blog, StockTrader.com.


Ratings Overall

Best in Class

2016
11

Overall
  • Banking
2015
13

Overall
  • Banking
  • New Investors
2014
 8

Overall
  • Customer Service
  • New Investors
2013
12

Overall
  • Customer Service

Commissions & Fees

Commission Notes

ShareBuilder offers one set of primary commission rates along with a special rate for discounted automatic investing.

Note that Costco member exclusive pricing ended September 1, 2015. Existing co-branded accounts (opened prior to September 1) can continue to access Costco pricing ($5.95 online trades, $9.95 PortfolioBuilder trades and $2.00 automatic trades).

Stock Trades
Regular trades - All regular stock trades are $6.95 each. For stocks priced under $1.00, add $0.007 per share with a minimum $6.95 commission, maximum of the lesser of either 15 percent of the principal amount or $500.

Automatic investments - Automatic investments are $3.95 per trade. All automatic trades are made on Tuesdays.

Other notes - PortfolioBuilder trades are $18.95 each time you buy or sell or portfolio of 6 to 8 ETFs. Phone orders available for $19.95 per trade. Capital One Investing does not currently support the ability to short stocks.

Option Trades - Options trades cost $6.95 + $.75 per contract.




Trade Commissions Breakdown

Stock Trade Fee (flat)* $6.95
Stock Trade Fee (per share)* N/A
Options Base Fee* $6.95
Options Per Contract Fee* $0.75
Options Exercise Fee $20.00
Options Assignment Fee $20.00
Mutual Fund Trade Fee $19.95
Broker Assisted Trades Fee $19.95
Minimum Deposit $0.00

Margin Rates

Under $24,999.99 8.20%
$25,000.00 to 49,999.99 7.75%
$50,000.00 to $99,999.99 7.20%
$100,000.00 to $249,999.99 7.00%
$250,000.00 to $499,999.99 5.75%
$500,000.00 to $999,999.99 5.40%
Above $1,000,000.00 5.20%

Miscellaneous Fees

Bond Trade Fee N/A
Treasury Trade Fee N/A
IRA Annual Fee $0.00
IRA Closure Fee $75.00
Returned ACH Fee $5.00
Returned Wire Fee $5.00
Stock Certificate Processing Fee $0.00
Stock Certificate Delivery Fee N/A
Paper Statement Fee $5.00
Paper Confirmation Fee $5.00
Domestic Wire Fee $30.00
International Wire Fee $30.00


Account Features

Offering of Investments

Advisor Services help
Yes
Bonds (Corporate) help
No
Bonds (Municipal) help
No
Bonds (US Treasury) help
No
CDs help
No
Clearing Firm help
Pershing
Commission Free ETFs help
0
Direct Market Routing - Stocks help
No
Direct Market Routing - Options help
No
DRIPs help
Yes
# of Easy to Borrow Stocks help
0
Forex Trading help
No
Futures Trading help
No
Member FINRA help
Yes
Member SIPC help
Yes
Mutual Funds help
Yes
Mutual Funds (Load) help
0
Mutual Funds (No Load) help
1202
Mutual Funds (NTF) help
459
Mutual Funds (Total) help
1202
Mutual Funds Phone Trades help
Yes
Mutual Funds Web Trades help
Yes
No Fee IRAs help
Yes
No Inactivity Fees help
Yes
No Minimum Deposit help
Yes
Options Exercising (Phone) help
Yes
Options Exercising (Web) help
Yes
Options Trading help
Yes
Options Trading (Mini) help
No
Options Trading (Weekly) help
Yes
OTCBB / Pink Sheets help
Yes
Stock Trading help
Yes

Customer Service

Phone Support help
Yes
Email Support help
Yes
Live Chat (Current Clients) help
Yes
24/7 Support help
No

Platforms & Tools

Desktop Platform (Windows) help
No
Desktop Platform (Mac) help
No
Web Platform help
No
Active Trading Platform help
NA
Auto Investing help
No
Charting - Display Corporate Events help
Yes
Charting - Drawing Tools help
1
Charting - Notes help
No
Heat Mapping help
Yes
Ladder Trading help
No
Level 2 Quotes - Stocks help
No
Level 2 Quotes - Options help
No
Option Chains - Streaming Real-time help
No
Option Analysis - P&L Charts help
No
Stock Alerts Delivery - Email help
Yes
Stock Alerts Delivery - Sound help
No
Stock Alerts Delivery - Text SMS help
Yes
Streaming Time & Sales help
No
Streaming TV help
No
Trade Hot Keys help
No
Virtual Trading help
No
Watch Lists - Streaming Real-time Quotes help
No

Research

Research - ETFs help
Yes
Research - Mutual Funds help
Yes
Research - Pink Sheets / OTCBB help
Yes
Research - Fixed Income help
No
Equity Research - Research Reports help
4
ETF Research - Top 10 Holdings help
Yes
ETF Research - Morningstar Style Box help
Yes
ETF Research - Research Reports help
Yes
Mutual Fund Research - Research Reports help
Yes
Mutual Fund Research - Fees Breakdown help
Yes
Mutual Fund Research - Performance Analysis help
Yes
Mutual Fund Research - Top 10 Holdings help
Yes
Screener - Stocks help
Yes
Screener - ETFs help
Yes
Screener - Mutual Funds help
Yes
Screener - Options help
No
Screener - Bonds help
No

Education

Has Education - Stocks help
Yes
Has Education - ETFs help
No
Has Education - Options help
No
Has Education - Mutual Funds help
Yes
Has Education - Fixed Income help
No
Has Education - Retirement help
No
Investor Dictionary help
Yes
Client Webinars help
No
Live Seminars help
Yes
Videos help
No
Retirement Calculator help
Yes
Community Forums help
No

Mobile Trading

iPhone App help
Yes
iPad App help
Yes
Apple Watch App help
No
Android App help
Yes
Android Tablet App help
No
Mobile Site help
Yes
Quotes (Real-time) help
Yes
Quotes (Streaming Real-time) help
No
Watch List Syncing help
Yes
Market Movers (Top Gainers) help
Yes
Stock Alerts Delivery - Push Notifications help
No
Customizable Homescreen help
No
Stream Live TV help
No
Trading - Stocks help
Yes
Trading - Stocks (After-Hours) help
No
Trading - Simple Options help
Yes
Trading - Complex Options help
No

Banking

Member FDIC help
No
Checking Accounts help
Yes
Savings Accounts help
Yes
Debit Cards help
Yes
Credit Cards help
Yes
Mortgage Loans help
Yes
Mobile Check Deposit help
Yes
ATM Fee Reimbursement help
No
No Fee Banking help
Yes
Retail Locations help
800

Active Trading

Receives Payment for Order Flow (Equities) help
No
Client Liquidity Rebates help
No
Financial Information Forum (FIF) Participant help
No

Compare Capital One Investing

Select one or more of these brokers to compare against Capital One Investing.

All pricing data was obtained from a published web site as of 2/16/2016 and is believed to be accurate, but is not guaranteed. The StockBrokers.com staff is constantly working with its online broker representatives to obtain the latest pricing data. If you believe any data listed above is inaccurate, please contact us using the link at the bottom of this page. For stock trade rates, advertised pricing is for a standard order size of 500 shares of stock priced at $30 per share. For options orders, an options regulatory fee per contract may apply.




arrow_drop_upBack to top