Comparing brokers side by side is no easy task. For our 2017 Broker Review
, we factored in 308 different variables to assess 16 different brokers. So when taking a look at Firstrade vs TradeStation Securities, there is a huge database of information available to us.
To start this comparison, first we will take a look at the broker commission rates for placing regular stock and options trades. TradeStation Securities charges more than Firstrade for placing regular stock trades ($5.00 and $4.95, respectively). With options, the base fees charged are $5.00 (TradeStation Securities) and $4.95 (Firstrade). Each contract then costs $0.65 at Firstrade and $0.50 at TradeStation Securities for a difference in price of $0.15 per contract. Not all brokers charge a flat rate fee per trade though, so it is important to read the full commission notes to know the complete breakdown (go to any online broker review
page, then scroll to the "Commissions Notes" section).
Next to commission rates, being able to trade the instrument you want is important. TradeStation Securities provides its clients with Stock Trading, Options Trading, Mutual Funds and Futures Trading while Firstrade gives clients access to Stock Trading, Options Trading and Mutual Funds. Looking at mutual funds, Firstrade offers its clients access to 12191 different mutual funds while TradeStation Securities has 4854 available funds, a difference of 7,337.00. Commission free ETFs also should not be forgotten, Firstrade offers 12 versus TradeStation Securities's total of 0.
Lastly, taking a look at popular features and functionality, we can go a bit deeper to really break down the difference of both brokers. TradeStation Securities makes virtual trading available to clients, while Firstrade does not. Taking a look at mobile trading, Firstrade gives clients access to an iPhone App and Android App while TradeStation Securities has 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 and Debit Cards at Firstrade while clients at TradeStation Securities can have none of these. On the whole, when it comes to tools, research, and trading on the go, TradeStation Securities posted awards for Best in Class - Platforms & Tools in 2014, while Firstrade found itself with none of these.
Overall, both Firstrade and TradeStation Securities hold a 3.50 star rating.