Comparing brokers side by side is no easy task. For our annual broker review, we assess over a dozen brokers on hundreds of different variables to find the best online broker
. Yielding a database of over 4,000 data points, let's compare E*TRADE vs Merrill Edge.
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