Using data from our latest annual broker review which tested more than a dozen different online brokers
over six months, we can compare Charles Schwab vs TradeStation Securities to determine which broker is best. Let's dive in.
First, we will break down the commission charges of both brokers for placing stock and options trades. TradeStation Securities charges $5.00 per stock trade which is $0.05 more than Charles Schwab which charges customers $4.95 per trade. Looking at trading options, Charles Schwab's base fee is $4.95 while TradeStation Securities's is $5.00. Each option contract then costs $0.65 at Charles Schwab and $0.50 at TradeStation Securities. Instead of flat rate fees, several brokers charge a per-share fee instead. For a complete review of trading charges, read our full online broker reviews
Next, investors want to make sure they can trade the investment vehicle they want. Both Charles Schwab and TradeStation Securities support Stock Trading, Options Trading, Mutual Funds and Futures Trading. As far as mutual funds go, Charles Schwab boasts an offering of 5509 mutual funds compared to TradeStation Securities's 4951 available funds. And, commission free ETFs deserve a comparison, with TradeStation Securities falling behind Charles Schwab, offering 0 commission free ETFs compared to Charles Schwab's 244.
Finally, by comparing the each broker's website and platform features, we can surface interesting differences. TradeStation Securities has virtual trading, Charles Schwab doesn't. For mobile trading, Both Charles Schwab and TradeStation Securities offer clients access to an iPhone App, iPad App and Android App. Online banking is also used by many customers, and multiple full-service brokerages provide these services. Checking Accounts, Savings Accounts, Debit Cards, Credit Cards and Mortgage Loans are available to clients of Charles Schwab while TradeStation Securities offers customers none of these. All factors considered, when it comes to platform tools, research, and mobile trading, Charles Schwab posted awards Best in Class - Platforms & Tools and Best in Class - Research in 2018, while TradeStation Securities found itself with Best in Class - Platforms & Tools.
Overall, Charles Schwab takes the upper hand with 4.50 stars over TradeStation Securities's 3.50 stars.