PROS / Scottrade has a fully equipped knowledge center to help you make trading decisions.
CONS / The broker-assisted trade fee is on the high end of sites we reviewed.
VERDICT / Scottrade has a great knowledge center and offers four platform options to meet the needs of all levels of traders.
Scottrade is a well-designed online stock broker that can meet the needs of both novice and advanced traders. It has straightforward pricing and does not charge extra fees for account maintenance or inactivity, making it a good option for online stock trading.
There are four different stock trading platforms: Scottrade, Scottrader, Scottrade Elite and OptionsFirst. Scottrade is designed for the average online user and provides basic stats and good account monitoring tools. Scottrader is stepped up a bit, with live-streaming stock quotes, personal stock lists and free Dow Jones news. This platform is fully customizable. Scottrade Elite is the most advanced platform and is designed for active traders. Its features include Dow Jones and Comtex news, top-performer scanners, charting ability and access to Level II quotes. OptionsFirst is specifically for option trading. It lets you access advanced option trading tools like risk assessment, market watch, hot lists and option chains. Scottrade does a good job at providing trading tools for beginners and advanced traders.
The trading platforms are easy to use and customizable. To make the platforms fit your needs, you can create up to three homepages for viewing your account and trading information. You can select which windows you want to view – including quick quotes and a portfolio manager – and have up to 23 tables displayed on a page at one time. The drag-and-drop functionality makes organizing your viewing windows quick and easy.
Scottrade charges $7 to buy stocks online. The broker-assisted trade fee is $32, which is one of the higher fees among the sites we reviewed. The firm offers a wide variety of investing options, including IRAs, mutual funds, exchange-traded funds, stocks, bonds and international investing. Opening an account with Scottrade requires an initial deposit of $500.
The Scottrade website has a knowledge center with tutorials to help you learn the best way to use the company's online trading tools. There are also investment planning calculators and videos that provide interactive resources for helping you make informed trade decisions. This online discount broker hosts educational events both in person and online. These in-person events and live webinars are free to Scottrade users.
Scottrade offers a range of online investing options with low fees and commissions. However, the broker-assisted fee is high when compared to other online stock trading sites. Pricing is straightforward, and you are not charged extra for maintenance or inactivity. The knowledge center is a good resource for both novice and advanced traders with its mix of live events and interactive tools. The trading platform lets you customize which tables are displayed and how they are arranged. If you need additional assistance with your online trading, Scottrade's customer service representatives can be accessed in person, over the phone and online.