E*TRADE vs Merrill Edge Review
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 E*TRADE better than Merrill Edge? After scoring brokers on over 4,000 data points for our 2019 review, E*TRADE (83.68%) is better than Merrill Edge (77.93%). While E*TRADE may not offer the cheapest trades, the Power E*TRADE platform is great for options trading, and the broker offers two great mobile apps.
To start this comparison, first, we will take a look at the online broker commission rates for placing regular stock and options trades. E*TRADE and Merrill Edge have equal fees for trading stocks (equities), $6.95 per trade. Looking at options, the base fees charged are the same for both brokers, $6.95. Option contracts at both of the brokerages are the same at $0.75 each. It's important to note that not all brokers charge a flat fee per trade. Thus, it is important to read the full commission notes for each broker, which we include with each online broker review.
Next to commission rates, being able to trade what you want is important. Merrill Edge provides its clients with Stock Trading, Options Trading and Mutual Funds while E*TRADE provides clients access to Stock Trading, Options Trading, Mutual Funds and Futures Trading. Looking at mutual funds, Merrill Edge trails E*TRADE by 5,353 total mutual funds, with E*TRADE offering 9062 and Merrill Edge offering 3709.
Trading access aside, by comparing popular features and functionality, we can break down relevant differences between both brokers. E*TRADE nor Merrill Edge offers virtual trading. Taking a look at mobile trading, Both E*TRADE and Merrill Edge offer clients access to an iPhone App, iPad App and Android App. Not to be left out, online banking is also a nice benefit for many investors, and some brokerages provide these services to clients. Clients can have Checking Accounts, Savings Accounts, Debit Cards, Credit Cards and Mortgage Loans at Merrill Edge while customers at E*TRADE can have Checking Accounts, Savings Accounts and Debit Cards.
Overall, between E*TRADE and Merrill Edge, E*TRADE is the winner.
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.