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Merrill Edge vs ChoiceTrade 2019

The StockBrokers.com annual review (9 years running) takes six months to complete and produces over 30,000 words of research each year. Here's how we test.

Is Merrill Edge better than ChoiceTrade? After scoring brokers in nine separate categories for our 2019 review, Merrill Edge (77.93%) is better than ChoiceTrade (45.72%). Backed by parent company Bank of America, Merrill Edge delivers fantastic research, customer service, universal account support, and customer rewards. Merrill Edge offers 10 commission-free stock or ETF trades each month to investors with balances above $20,000.

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Overall Rating

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Overall 4 2.5
Merrill Edge Review ChoiceTrade Review

Trading Fees

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Minimum Deposit $0.00 $0.00
Stock Trade Fee (per trade) $6.95 $0.00
ETF Trade Fee $6.95 $0.00
Options Base Fee $6.95 $5.00
Options Per Contract Fee $0.75 $0.15
Mutual Fund Trade Fee $19.95 N/A
Broker Assisted Trades Fee $29.95 $30.00
Commissions & Fees 4 3.5
Winner check_circle

Margin Rates

Feature Merrill Edge
Open Account
ChoiceTrade
Under $24,999.99 10.63% 8.25%
$25,000.00 to $49,999.99 9.50% 8.25%
$50,000.00 to $99,999.99 9.50% 8.25%
$100,000.00 to $249,999.99 8.13% 8.25%
$250,000.00 to $499,999.99 8.13% 8.25%
$500,000.00 to $999,999.99 7.88% 8.25%
Above $1,000,000.00 7.25% 8.25%
Commissions & Fees 4 3.5
Winner check_circle

Account Fees

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
IRA Annual Fee $0.00 $50.00
IRA Closure Fee $49.95 $50.00
Returned ACH Fee $30.00 $40.00
Returned Wire Fee N/A $40.00
Stock Certificate Processing Fee $500.00 N/A
Stock Certificate Delivery Fee N/A N/A
Paper Statement Fee $5.00 $5.00
Paper Confirmation Fee $3.00 $1.00
Domestic Wire Fee $24.95 $35.00
International Wire Fee $24.95 $60.00
Commissions & Fees 4 3.5

Investment Options

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Stock Trading
Yes Yes
OTCBB / Pink Sheets
Yes Yes
Options Trading
Yes Yes
Complex Options Max Legs
2 0
Futures Trading
No No
Forex Trading
No No
Commission-Free ETFs 0 0
Mutual Funds (No Load)
2471 0
Mutual Funds (Total)
3709 0
Bonds (US Treasury)
Yes No
Bonds (Corporate)
Yes No
Bonds (Municipal)
Yes No
Advisor Services
Yes No
International Trading
No No
Offering of Investments 3 2
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Order Types

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Order Type - Market
Yes Yes
Order Type - Limit
Yes Yes
Order Type - Stop
Yes Yes
Order Type - Trailing Stop
Yes Yes
Order Type - Contingent
No Yes
Order Type - MultiContingent
No Yes
Order Type - OCO
No No
Order Type - OTO
No No
Order Type - OTOCO
No No
Offering of Investments 3 2
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Trading Platforms

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Desktop Platform (Windows)
Yes Yes
Desktop Platform (Mac)
Yes Yes
Web Platform
Yes Yes
Paper Trading
No Yes
Trade Journal
No No
Watch Lists - Total Fields
285 4
Two-Factor Authentication Login
Yes No
Heat Mapping
Yes No
Platforms & Tools 4 2
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Charting Features

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Charting - Trade Off Chart
Yes No
Charting - Indicators / Studies
95 20
Charting - Drawing Tools
22 0
Charting - Historical Trades
Yes No
Charting - Corporate Events
Yes No
Charting - Automated Analysis
Yes Yes
Charting - Save Profiles
Yes No
Charting - Study Customizations
8 1
Charting - Custom Studies
No No
Platforms & Tools 4 2
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Day Trading

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Stock Alerts - Basic Fields
Yes No
Stock Alerts - Advanced Fields
Yes No
Streaming Time & Sales
Yes Yes
Streaming TV
No No
Direct Market Routing - Stocks
No No
Direct Market Routing - Options
No No
Ladder Trading
No No
Trade Hot Keys
Yes No
Level 2 Quotes - Stocks
Yes Yes
Level 2 Quotes - Options
Yes No
Trade Ideas - Backtesting
Yes No
Short Locator
No No
Client Liquidity Rebates
No No
Winner check_circle

Mobile Trading Apps

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
iPhone App
Yes Yes
Android App
Yes Yes
Apple Watch App
Yes No
Trading - Stocks
Yes Yes
Trading - After-Hours
Yes Yes
Trading - Conditional Orders
No No
Trading - Mutual Funds
Yes No
Trading - Simple Options
Yes Yes
Trading - Complex Options
Yes No
Trading - Option Rolling
No No
Touch / Face ID
Yes No
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Mobile App Features

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Watch List Syncing
Yes Yes
Stock Alerts - Basic Fields
Yes No
Charting - After Hours
Yes Yes
Charting - Drawing
Yes No
Charting - Study Customizations
Yes No
Customizable Homescreen
Yes No
Heatmapping
Yes No
Stream Live TV
No No
Barcode Lookup
No No
Mobile Trading 4.5 2
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Research Overview

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Research - Stocks
Yes Yes
Research - ETFs
Yes Yes
Research - Mutual Funds
Yes No
Research - Pink Sheets / OTCBB
Yes Yes
Research - Fixed Income
Yes Yes
Screener - Stocks
Yes No
Screener - ETFs
Yes No
Screener - Mutual Funds
Yes No
Screener - Options
Yes No
Screener - Bonds
Yes No
Misc - Portfolio Builder
Yes No
Misc - Portfolio Allocation
Yes No
Research 4.5 1.5
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Stock Research

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Stock Research - Reports
3 0
Stock Research - Earnings
Yes Yes
Stock Research - Insiders
Yes Yes
Stock Research - Metric Comp
Yes No
Stock Research - SEC Filings
Yes Yes
Stock Research - Social
No No
Stock Research - Balance Sheet
Yes Yes
Stock Research - Cash Flows
Yes Yes
Stock Research - News
Yes Yes
Stock Research - ESG
Yes No
Research 4.5 1.5
Winner check_circle

ETF Research

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
ETFs - Strategy Overview
Yes Yes
ETFs - Top 10 Holdings
Yes No
ETFs - Sector Exposure
Yes No
ETFs - Risk Analysis
Yes No
ETFs - Performance Analysis
Yes No
ETFs - Ratings
Yes No
ETFs - Morningstar StyleMap
Yes No
ETFs - Reports
Yes No
Research 4.5 1.5
Winner check_circle

Mutual Fund Research

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Mutual Funds - Strategy Overview
Yes No
Mutual Funds - Prospectus
Yes No
Mutual Funds - Reports
Yes No
Mutual Funds - Fees Breakdown
Yes No
Mutual Funds - Top 10 Holdings
Yes No
Mutual Funds - Asset Allocation
Yes No
Mutual Funds - Sector Allocation
Yes No
Mutual Funds - Country Allocation
Yes No
Mutual Funds - StyleMap
Yes No
Mutual Funds - 3rd Party Ratings
Yes No
Research 4.5 1.5
Winner check_circle

Options Trading

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Option Chains - Streaming
Yes Yes
Option Chains - Total Columns
69 11
Option Chains - Greeks
5 1
Option Chains - Quick Analysis
Yes Yes
Option Analysis - P&L Charts
Yes Yes
Option Probability Analysis
Yes Yes
Option Probability Analysis Adv
No No
Option Positions - Greeks
Yes No
Option Positions - Adv Analysis
Yes No
Option Positions - Rolling
No No
Option Positions - Grouping
Yes Yes
Platforms & Tools 4 2
Winner check_circle

Beginners

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Has Education - Stocks
Yes No
Has Education - ETFs
Yes No
Has Education - Options
Yes Yes
Has Education - Mutual Funds
Yes No
Has Education - Fixed Income
Yes No
Has Education - Retirement
Yes No
Paper Trading
No Yes
Videos
Yes No
Webinars (Monthly Avg)
0 0
Webinars (Archived)
No No
Live Seminars
Yes No
Progress Tracking
No No
Interactive Learning - Quizzes
Yes No
Investor Magazine
Yes No
Education 4.5 1
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Banking

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Retail Locations
4400 0
Member FDIC
Yes No
Checking Accounts
Yes No
Savings Accounts
Yes No
Credit Cards
Yes No
Debit Cards
Yes No
Mortgage Loans
Yes No
No Fee Banking
No No
Banking 5 0.5
Winner check_circle

Overall

Feature Merrill Edge ChoiceTrade
Merrill Edge Review ChoiceTrade Review
Overall 4 2.5
Winner check_circle
Using data from our latest annual broker review which tested more than a dozen different online brokers over six months, we can compare ChoiceTrade vs Merrill Edge 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. Merrill Edge charges more than ChoiceTrade for placing regular stock trades ($6.95 and $0, respectively). With options, the base fees charged are $6.95 (Merrill Edge) and $5.00 (ChoiceTrade). Option contracts are pricier at Merrill Edge, costing $0.75 versus $0.15 at ChoiceTrade. 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. ChoiceTrade provides its clients with Stock Trading and Options Trading while Merrill Edge provides clients access to Stock Trading, Options Trading and Mutual Funds. As far as mutual funds go, Merrill Edge boasts an offering of 3709 mutual funds compared to ChoiceTrade's 0 available funds.

Finally, by comparing the each broker's website and platform features, we can surface interesting differences. ChoiceTrade offers virtual trading while Merrill Edge does not. For mobile trading, ChoiceTrade offers the iPhone App and Android App while Merrill Edge offers the iPhone App, iPad App and Android App. Online banking is also used by many customers, and multiple full-service brokerages provide these services. Clients can have Checking Accounts, Savings Accounts, Debit Cards, Credit Cards and Mortgage Loans at Merrill Edge while customers at ChoiceTrade can have none of these.

Overall, between ChoiceTrade and Merrill Edge, Merrill Edge is the winner.

ChoiceTrade Review
Merrill Edge Review


All pricing data was obtained from a published web site as of 02/18/2019 and is believed to be accurate, but is not guaranteed. 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.

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