Compare Discount Brokers

Choosing a broker is no easy. Always perform a Comparison Discount Brokers exercise.

Word to the wise!

Check with each of their individual websites for their updated current commissions, fees, products available and other information.

Also, read their policies as they may have changed, just like in any other business.

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See the table for a comparison of five online discount brokerage firms.

Why OptionsXpress?

I hope this comparison table helped.

Ask any investor - they will tell you their favorite online discount brokerage firm and why.

I have tried a couple - scottrade, E-trade, and finally OptionsXpress.

In my opinion OptionsXpress is the better firm.

Why? you ask..

Well because I wanted a firm whose tools matched my investing lifestyle. I wanted a firm that I did not have to constantly watch my trades. What do I mean?

Well when I set a buy order in OptionsXpress, I also have the option of setting two sell orders in addition - a stop - limit order, and a sell-gain order.

Let me explain with an illustration.

Suppose I want to buy stock XYZ for $11.4. Well I also want to make sure that if the stock XYZ goes down $1.40 it automatically sells, and it it goes up $2.40 it automatically sells as well. I can do this in OptionsXpress in one order.

I create a buy order for stock XYZ for $11.40 I create a trigger sell order tied to this buy order with a stop-limit of $10 and a third order with a sell- gain limit of $13.80. As long as my buy order is executed, then the other two order will be triggered when stock XYZ reached the stop limit and the gain limit.

In most of the online brokerage firms this option is not available. You have to first create a buy order. The buy order has to execute and THEN you go back and create a sell order.

Cumbersome and dangerous - especially in a volatile market when the stock can start the day climbing and before you know it - some news or something causes it to plummet.

Other reasons I like OptionsXpress:

* Low online trading cost - $14.95 to begin and $9.95 trades after 8 trades

* No minimum balance required

* Lowest amount of fees compared to other brokers.

* IRA friendly with no maintenance fee.

* Trade Stock, Options, Mutual Funds, and Bonds.

* High rated website for usability.

* Full suite of investing tools.

* Advanced trading - Virtual Trading is free.

* Free mobile application to trade on the go!

* Voted #1 Easiest to Use Online Broker by Barron's

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