Using data from the StockBrokers.com 2017 Broker Review which tested 16 different online brokers
over six months, we can compare E*TRADE vs Interactive Brokers 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. E*TRADE charges $6.95 per stock trade which is $6.95 more than Interactive Brokers which charges customers $0 (the broker charges a per share rate instead) per trade. Looking at trading options, Interactive Brokers's base fee is $0 while E*TRADE's is $6.95. Each option contract then costs $0.75 at E*TRADE and $0.70 at Interactive Brokers. 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. E*TRADE and Interactive Brokers provide clients with Stock Trading, Options Trading, Mutual Funds and Futures Trading. As far as mutual funds go, E*TRADE offers its clients access to 8652 different mutual funds while Interactive Brokers has 8026 available funds, a difference of 626. And, commission free ETFs deserve a comparison, with E*TRADE having the upper hand thanks to its 133 available commission free ETFs compared to Interactive Brokers's offering of 33.
Finally, by comparing the each broker's website and platform features, we can surface interesting differences. Interactive Brokers has virtual trading, E*TRADE doesn't. For mobile trading, E*TRADE and Interactive Brokers both have a 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 and Debit Cards are available to clients of E*TRADE while Interactive Brokers offers customers none of these. All factors considered, when it comes to platform tools, research, and mobile trading, Interactive Brokers was rated Best in Class - Platforms & Tools and Best in Class - Mobile Trading in 2017, while E*TRADE was rated Best in Class - Research and Best in Class - Mobile Trading.
Overall, both E*TRADE and Interactive Brokers hold a 4.00 star rating.