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Interactive Brokers vs. TD Ameritrade
It comes down to the wire for these two trading platform behemoths.
Interactive Brokers and TD Ameritrade are two of the biggest names in the industry. And with so many features in common, the right platform for your portfolio depends entirely on your level of trading experience.
Which one is better?
- Choose Interactive Brokers if you’re a day trader or professional investor.
- Choose TD Ameritrade if you’re a new to intermediate investor.
Interactive Brokers and TD Ameritrade are notoriously well-known in the trading industry — and for good reason. They stand as two of the best-equipped, most sophisticated platforms on the market.
Naming one of these platforms an unequivocal winner isn’t only tough — it’s complicated. And that’s because when these platforms are put head to head, it becomes starkly evident that Interactive Brokers and TD Ameritrade have a lot to offer — a point further complicated by the fact that many of their available features are the same.
Among the common offerings we find a sweeping selection of tradable securities, numerous account options, elaborate charting tools, robust research resources, paper trading, robo-advisors and no less than five unique trading platforms apiece.
With so much in common, where do we draw the line? It comes down to the type of trader each platform is best equipped to serve.
To be fair, TD Ameritrade is more than capable of satisfying the advanced investor. And Interactive Brokers offers IBKR Lite — a platform designed with the beginner investor in mind. But when push comes to shove, Interactive Brokers is the better platform for professional traders, boasting numerous third-party software integrations and wider access to international markets. And TD Ameritrade is more approachable for beginners, with less complex pricing and 24-hour customer support.
How do Interactive Brokers and TD Ameritrade compare?
|Interactive Borkers||TD Ameritrade|
|Overview||Interactive Brokers offers an impressive range of tools and low fees for active or professional investors. In late 2019, it introduced IBKR Lite, a platform aimed at casual investors that charges no commissions on stocks and ETFs listed on US exchanges.||TD Ameritrade is an online brokerage service designed for beginner investors and active traders. It features user-friendly trading platforms and a variety of mutual funds. It may be best for new investors, frequent traders and advanced traders.|
|Stock trade fee||$0||$0|
|Option trade fee||$0 + $0.65/contract||$0 + $0.65/contract|
or $25 Broker-assisted
|Minimum deposit to open||$0||$0|
|Tools and research|
|Reputation and customer reviews|
|Apple App Store reviews|
|Google Play Store reviews|
Both of these platforms are well worth their salt and worthy of any investor’s consideration. But Interactive Brokers is better equipped to serve professional traders, and newbies will find more support with TD Ameritrade.
Before you apply, review your account options with multiple providers to find the platform that can best meet your needs.
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