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TD Ameritrade vs Firstrade 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 Firstrade better than TD Ameritrade? After scoring brokers on over 4,000 data points for our 2019 review, TD Ameritrade (86.98%) is better than Firstrade (67.1%). The extra cost of trading with TD Ameritrade is worth every cent – the brokerage delivers fantastic platforms, research, mobile apps, education, and customer service. This outstanding all-round experience makes TD Ameritrade our No. 1 overall broker in 2019.

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Overall Rating

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
Overall 4.5 3.5
TD Ameritrade Review Firstrade Review

Trading Fees

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
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 $0.00
Options Per Contract Fee $0.75 $0.00
Mutual Fund Trade Fee $49.99 $0.00
Broker Assisted Trades Fee $44.99 $19.95
Commissions & Fees 3.5 4
Winner check_circle

Margin Rates

Feature TD Ameritrade
Open Account
Firstrade
Open Account
Under $24,999.99 10.25% 9.50%
$25,000.00 to $49,999.99 10.00% 9.00%
$50,000.00 to $99,999.99 9.00% 8.50%
$100,000.00 to $249,999.99 8.75% 8.00%
$250,000.00 to $499,999.99 8.50% 7.75%
$500,000.00 to $999,999.99 8.50% 6.00%
Above $1,000,000.00 7.75% 5.25%
Commissions & Fees 3.5 4
Winner check_circle

Account Fees

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
IRA Annual Fee $0.00 $0.00
IRA Closure Fee $0.00 $0.00
Returned ACH Fee $25.00 $50.00
Returned Wire Fee $25.00 $50.00
Stock Certificate Processing Fee $0.00 $300.00
Stock Certificate Delivery Fee $500.00 $300.00
Paper Statement Fee $0.00 $5.00
Paper Confirmation Fee $0.00 $3.00
Domestic Wire Fee $25.00 $30.00
International Wire Fee $25.00 $50.00
Commissions & Fees 3.5 4

Investment Options

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
Stock Trading
Yes Yes
OTCBB / Pink Sheets
Yes Yes
Options Trading
Yes Yes
Complex Options Max Legs
4 2
Futures Trading
Yes No
Forex Trading
Yes No
Commission-Free ETFs 571 all
Mutual Funds (No Load)
5185 5234
Mutual Funds (Total)
12418 12603
Bonds (US Treasury)
Yes Yes
Bonds (Corporate)
Yes Yes
Bonds (Municipal)
Yes Yes
Advisor Services
Yes No
International Trading
Yes No
Offering of Investments 4.5 3.5
Winner check_circle

Order Types

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
Order Type - Market
Yes Yes
Order Type - Limit
Yes Yes
Order Type - Stop
Yes Yes
Order Type - Trailing Stop
Yes Yes
Order Type - Contingent
Yes Yes
Order Type - MultiContingent
Yes Yes
Order Type - OCO
Yes Yes
Order Type - OTO
Yes Yes
Order Type - OTOCO
Yes No
Offering of Investments 4.5 3.5
Winner check_circle

Trading Platforms

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
Desktop Platform (Windows)
Yes No
Desktop Platform (Mac)
Yes No
Web Platform
Yes Yes
Paper Trading
Yes No
Trade Journal
Yes No
Watch Lists - Total Fields
514 13
Two-Factor Authentication Login
Yes No
Heat Mapping
Yes Yes
Platforms & Tools 5 2
Winner check_circle

Charting Features

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
Charting - Trade Off Chart
Yes No
Charting - Indicators / Studies
411 58
Charting - Drawing Tools
22 5
Charting - Historical Trades
Yes No
Charting - Corporate Events
Yes Yes
Charting - Automated Analysis
Yes No
Charting - Save Profiles
Yes No
Charting - Study Customizations
9 6
Charting - Custom Studies
Yes No
Platforms & Tools 5 2
Winner check_circle

Day Trading

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
Stock Alerts - Basic Fields
Yes Yes
Stock Alerts - Advanced Fields
Yes No
Streaming Time & Sales
Yes No
Streaming TV
Yes No
Direct Market Routing - Stocks
Yes No
Direct Market Routing - Options
Yes No
Ladder Trading
Yes No
Trade Hot Keys
Yes No
Level 2 Quotes - Stocks
Yes No
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 TD Ameritrade Firstrade
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
Yes No
Trading - Mutual Funds
No No
Trading - Simple Options
Yes Yes
Trading - Complex Options
Yes No
Trading - Option Rolling
Yes No
Touch / Face ID
Yes Yes
Winner check_circle

Mobile App Features

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
Watch List Syncing
Yes Yes
Stock Alerts - Basic Fields
Yes No
Stock Alerts - Advanced Fields
No No
Charting - After Hours
Yes No
Charting - Drawing
Yes No
Charting - Study Customizations
Yes Yes
Customizable Homescreen
No No
Heatmapping
No No
Stream Live TV
Yes No
Barcode Lookup
Yes No
Mobile Trading 4.5 3.5
Winner check_circle

Research Overview

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
Research - Stocks
Yes Yes
Research - ETFs
Yes Yes
Research - Mutual Funds
Yes Yes
Research - Pink Sheets / OTCBB
Yes Yes
Research - Fixed Income
Yes Yes
Research - Futures
Yes No
Research - Forex
Yes No
Screener - Stocks
Yes Yes
Screener - ETFs
Yes Yes
Screener - Mutual Funds
Yes Yes
Screener - Options
Yes No
Screener - Bonds
Yes Yes
Misc - Portfolio Builder
Yes No
Misc - Portfolio Allocation
Yes Yes
Research 5 4
Winner check_circle

Stock Research

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
Stock Research - Reports
7 1
Stock Research - Earnings
Yes Yes
Stock Research - Insiders
Yes Yes
Stock Research - Metric Comp
Yes Yes
Stock Research - SEC Filings
Yes Yes
Stock Research - Social
Yes No
Stock Research - Balance Sheet
Yes Yes
Stock Research - Cash Flows
Yes Yes
Stock Research - News
Yes Yes
Stock Research - ESG
No No
Research 5 4
Winner check_circle

ETF Research

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
ETFs - Strategy Overview
Yes Yes
ETFs - Top 10 Holdings
Yes Yes
ETFs - Sector Exposure
Yes Yes
ETFs - Risk Analysis
Yes Yes
ETFs - Performance Analysis
Yes Yes
ETFs - Ratings
Yes Yes
ETFs - Morningstar StyleMap
Yes Yes
ETFs - Reports
Yes Yes
Research 5 4
Winner check_circle

Mutual Fund Research

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
Mutual Funds - Strategy Overview
Yes Yes
Mutual Funds - Prospectus
Yes Yes
Mutual Funds - Reports
Yes No
Mutual Funds - Fees Breakdown
Yes Yes
Mutual Funds - Top 10 Holdings
Yes Yes
Mutual Funds - Asset Allocation
Yes Yes
Mutual Funds - Sector Allocation
Yes Yes
Mutual Funds - Country Allocation
No Yes
Mutual Funds - StyleMap
Yes Yes
Mutual Funds - 3rd Party Ratings
Yes Yes
Research 5 4
Winner check_circle

Options Trading

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
Option Chains - Streaming
Yes No
Option Chains - Total Columns
33 8
Option Chains - Greeks
5 5
Option Chains - Quick Analysis
Yes No
Option Analysis - P&L Charts
Yes No
Option Probability Analysis
Yes No
Option Probability Analysis Adv
Yes No
Option Positions - Greeks
Yes No
Option Positions - Adv Analysis
Yes No
Option Positions - Rolling
Yes Yes
Option Positions - Grouping
Yes No
Platforms & Tools 5 2
Winner check_circle

Beginners

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
Has Education - Stocks
Yes Yes
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 Yes
Paper Trading
Yes No
Videos
Yes Yes
Webinars (Monthly Avg)
500 5
Webinars (Archived)
Yes Yes
Live Seminars
Yes No
Progress Tracking
Yes No
Interactive Learning - Quizzes
Yes No
Investor Magazine
Yes No
Education 5 3
Winner check_circle

Banking

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
Retail Locations
364 2
Member FDIC
No No
Checking Accounts
Yes Yes
Savings Accounts
No No
Credit Cards
Yes No
Debit Cards
Yes Yes
Mortgage Loans
No No
No Fee Banking
Yes No
Banking 3 2
Winner check_circle

Overall

Feature TD Ameritrade Firstrade
TD Ameritrade Review Firstrade Review
Overall 4.5 3.5
Winner check_circle
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 Firstrade vs TD Ameritrade.

To start this comparison, first, we will take a look at the online broker commission rates for placing regular stock and options trades. TD Ameritrade charges more than Firstrade for placing regular stock trades ($6.95 and $0, respectively). For options trading, TD Ameritrade has a base fee of $6.95, and Firstrade a base fee of $0. Firstrade's per contract rate of $0 is less than TD Ameritrade which charges $0.75. 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. TD Ameritrade offers clients Stock Trading, Options Trading, Mutual Funds, Forex Trading and Futures Trading while Firstrade offers Stock Trading, Options Trading and Mutual Funds. Looking at mutual funds, TD Ameritrade trails Firstrade by 185 total mutual funds, with Firstrade offering 12603 and TD Ameritrade offering 12418.

Trading access aside, by comparing popular features and functionality, we can break down relevant differences between both brokers. TD Ameritrade has virtual trading, Firstrade doesn't. Taking a look at mobile trading, Both Firstrade and TD Ameritrade 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. Checking Accounts and Debit Cards are offered by Firstrade while TD Ameritrade offers Checking Accounts, Debit Cards and Credit Cards.

Overall, between Firstrade and TD Ameritrade, TD Ameritrade is the winner.

Firstrade Review
TD Ameritrade 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.

TD Ameritrade, Inc. and StockBrokers.com are separate, unaffiliated companies and are not responsible for each other’s services and products. View terms.

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