T Nation



I'm looking to start investing my hard earned dollars and am wondering if E-trade is a good way to go. I'm in Germany so my options here are limited to banks on base that I'm less than enthused about. After looking around on their site it looks as though they have very diverse options, which is what I'm looking for, and they've been around for a while so it seems they're a stable company.

Anyone have any tips/cautions to offer about this particular company??


I just put some stock into Ameritrade not too long ago and its pretty good/user friendly. I dont know anything about stocks either. I just sent them a check with certified mail and it went through no prob.


i've been using etrade since 2000. no complaints whatsoever.

i am much more active with my scottrade account, so i would also recommend them if it's an option for you.


go with scottrade.

I have been very unhappy with E-trade over the years. They changed the rules on trade costs (they advertised $9.95, two months later the price went up to $20), and they change the "activity fees" once every year or so. At first, there was no minimum activity rate. Then they instituted a minimum balance... so I invested to meet the minimum balance. Then they decided that the minimum balance wasn't enough, you also have to do a certain number of trades per year to prevent getting a $50 (I think quarterly) fee. It's a load of crap.


I have accounts all over, Merrill Lynch, Fidelity, Raymond James, E-Trade, Ameritarde, ScottTrade, and Schwab...and all of them have thier pluses and minuses...

It all depends on what type of investing you plan on doing. If you are simply just putting money into a brokerage account, any will work, however ScottTrade or AmeriTrade are the cheapest...but that also depnds n how much money you are putting into the account. They also offer very comprehensive and user-friendly sites.

However, if you are planning on going with a retirement type of account and investing primarily in mutual funds, Fideltiy or Schwab would be the best option.

And finally if you are trading options, or commodities, I would go with Merrill. Anyhow, good luck, and happy investing!


The Motley Fool offers a good on-line broker evaluation comparison chart. They also have some very informative articles. Basic registration is free.