Online brokers continue to try and outdo one another by adding more site features, lowering trade commissions, adding free online seminars, education centers, and more. In a recent article published in USA Today (read it here), a list of the most active brokers was revealed based on total average trades made per day.
So, are cheap commissions the key to being a successful and active online broker? Not exactly.
The most active broker as ranked by total number of trades made was TD Ameritrade with 411,000, followed by Interactive Brokers with 340,000 total average daily trades. While Interactive Brokers is known for its competitive commissions, TD Ameritrade offers a slew of trade tools coupled with $9.99 flat fee trades to make itself stand out.
The rest of the list is comprised of Charles Schwab, Fidelity, Etrade, Scottrade, TradeStation, and OptionsXpress. Full ranking below:
One fact to point out though is the size of each broker. Most of the brokers featured have clients numbered in the millions, which puts the power of numbers on their side.
Perhaps a more interesting way to rank broker activity would be to order them based on average trades made per client each day. Such a ranking would reveal the true leader in activity. In the meantime, TD Ameritrade reigns supreme.