TD Ameritrade Review and Tutorial 2020

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Contents

TD Ameritrade Review and Tutorial 2020

Go to the Brokers List for alternatives

TD Ameritrade Facts & Figures

One of the largest discount brokers in the US, with a fixed trading commission and access to a large array of trading products and securities

Bonus 60 days free trades when depositing $3k
Instruments Forex, Stocks, Futures, E-minis
Demo Account Yes
Min. Deposit None
Min. Trade None
Regulated By SEC
MT4 Integration No
MT5 Integration
Mobile Apps iOS and Android
Auto Trading No
Trade Signals No
Islamic Account No
Forex
GBPUSD Spread Variable
EURUSD Spread Variable
EURGBP Spread Variable
Assets

TD Ameritrade is a publicly traded online broker, boasting over 7 million users and processing approximately 650,000 trades each day. Its comprehensive offering facilitates trading in stocks, forex, futures, options, ETFs, and other securities. This review will examine all aspects of their service, including account fees, trading platforms, mobile apps, and much more.

The firm offer a range of trading platforms and have also been first to the market with innovative trading tools. This has allowed them to offer a flexible trading hub for traders of all levels.

There are a range of account options which also cater to different types of trader.

The thinkorswim platform was originally a different brand entirely but has now been brought under the TD Ameritrade umbrella. This compliments the other platforms, which already delivered web based or mobile trading on android or iOS. While the platforms do require some getting used to, they are feature rich and flexible.

Account Types

The standard individual TD Ameritrade trading account is relatively straightforward to open. Once you have filled in the necessary forms and TD Ameritrade have finished their checking, you can start trading. As mentioned above, no minimum deposit is required to open an account. However, the minimum electronic funding is $50.

If you wish to use margin you will require a minimum balance of $2,000. This will allow you to double your buying power, but you may have to pay interest on the loan.

Trading Platforms

Whether you live in the UK or Canada, once you sign in to your brokerage account you will have access to the same robust TD Ameritrade trading platforms. In fact, you will have three options, TD Ameritrade.com and Trade Architect which are web-based, as well as desktop application thinkorswim.

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TD Ameritrade.com

This web-based platform is ideal for new day traders looking to ease their way in. Having said that, you will be met with a whole host of information, which can make site navigation somewhat difficult. Fortunately, you can utilise the ‘Ask Ted’ chatbot, who will be able to answer questions.

You also get access to a Portfolio Planner tool. This allows you to build a target asset allocation plan, helping to create a balanced portfolio of securities. You can choose between a standard model or you can build and customise one yourself to ensure optimal results with your strategy.

Trade Architect

TD Ameritrade’s Trade Architect is the next level up in terms of trading tools and real-time features. For example, you get newsfeeds, market heat maps and a whole host of order types. The platform is also clean and easy-to-use. Accessing data feeds is straightforward, you can customise charts, plus you have 30 stock and option screeners.

The system has also been streamlined so completing basic tasks, such as placing stop-loss limits and trailing stop orders is quick and hassle-free. In addition, there are option trading tools, such as probability analysis, profit and loss graphs, as well as target zone tools. As a result, Trade Architect is a good choice for traders with some experience looking to invest a modest sum of funds.

Thinkorswim

Originally a standalone broker until TD Ameritrade took it over in 2009, thinkorswim is considered the crown jewel in the platform offering. Once you download this desktop platform, serious traders can benefit from all of the features found in Trade Architect, plus advanced trade capabilities. In fact, it is so sophisticated, that only TradeStation offers such a comprehensive platform.

You get access to dozens of charts streaming real-time data and over 300 technical studies for each chart. This is actually the highest number in the industry and each study can be customised. Explore ThinkScript which is thinkorswim’s proprietary coding language and you can you can also create your own indicators.

  • Backtesting
  • Company profiling
  • Plotting FRED data
  • Customisable screeners
  • Sophisticated earning analysis tools
  • Real-time stock scanning and sharing charts
  • Ability to replay historical markets tick by tick
  • Access to both economic and corporate calendars

Experienced traders will struggle to find such an advanced, reliable and easy-to-use platform. Customisation can go as far as the user’s imagination will take them. Therefore, in terms of trading tools and platforms, TD Ameritrade user reviews report the highest levels of satisfaction.

Also note, all three platforms can be used to trade a huge range of instruments, from penny stocks to cryptocurrency, such as ethereum and litecoin.

Minimum Initial Deposit

One of the immediate benefits of a TD Ameritrade brokerage account is that there is no minimum initial deposit requirement. This is good for beginners and those with limited initial capital. In fact, this is fantastic when compared to pricing at other competitors, where account minimums can range from $500 to $10,000.

Spreads & Commissions

Reviews and research show TD Ameritrade don’t score so well in terms of margin rates and commission fees. Commissions are higher than the industry average at $6.95 per trade for stocks and ETFs. This is actually twice as expensive as some other discount brokers. In fact, when you compare TD Ameritrade vs Etrade, Interactive Brokers and Scottrade, it is only Etrade that charges as much.

Having said that, you can benefit from 101 commission-free ETFs. The only downside is that any commission-free ETFs sold within 30 days of purchase are subject to a $13.90 trading fee.

The question that will be answered below though, is are the powerful trading tools and extensive research resources enough to make these high brokerage fees good value for money?

Bonus

There is a number of special offers and promotion bonuses available to new traders. In fact, new account cash bonuses range from $100 for deposits between $25,000 and $99,999 all the way up to $1000 promotions for high dollar accounts.

On top of the deposit bonuses, TD Ameritrade occasionally release promo offer codes, as well as giving users up to 500 free trades. It’s also worth keeping an eye on their website for transfer bonuses.

Leverage

Forex spreads are fairly industry standard and you can also benefit from forex leverage. This is essentially a loan, allowing you to increase your position and potentially boost profits. However, trading on margin can also amplify losses.

In addition, TD Ameritrade’s margin costs are among the most expensive in the industry. The base margin rate is 7.75%, while the maximum rate is 9%. You will also have to hold a $2,000 minimum account balance for a margin account.

Other Trading Fees

Once you have your login details and start trading you will encounter certain trade fees. For example, domestic wire withdrawal will cost $25. Account transfers will cost $75, and a forced margin sellout is charged at $25 plus broker commission.

Despite that, TD Ameritrade’s pricing structure is fairly transparent. In addition, you won’t have to pay any annual or inactivity fee, unlike Interactive Brokers.

Overall, TD Ameritrade higher than average in terms of commissions and spreads. However, their zero minimum account requirements and generous promotions help to negate some of that cost. So, if you’re looking for low futures, options and mutual funds fees, you may want to head elsewhere. If you’re looking for a cheap start and a generous cash welcome, then TD Ameritrade may be a sensible choice.

Mobile Apps

When you open a new account, you will also have access to two mobile apps, TD Ameritrade Mobile and TD Ameritrade Mobile Trader. The former is designed for beginners and casual investors. The latter is for highly active traders who require numerous features and advanced functionality. On the whole, iPhone, iPad and Android app reviews are very positive.

TD Ameritrade Mobile

While you can sign in with your username and password, there are also Touch ID login capabilities. Once you’re into the app, you can customise positions and watch list views. Accessing much of their in-depth research is straightforward while viewing margin balance and account information is quick and easy.

In addition, you can utilise Social Signals analysis. You’ll also find the mobile app is compatible with both iOS and Android devices.

TD Ameritrade Mobile Trader

The Mobile Trader application allows for advanced charting, with an impressive 328 technical studies. In addition, you get a long list of order options. The interface is sleek and easy to navigate. Reviews show even making complex options trades is stress-free.

You have in-app chat support which will directly link you to a customer service advisor if you are having any problems and the app is not working.

There is even a screen sharing function. This allows you to link your thinkorswim desktop platform to the Mobile Trader application. You simply select the quotes tab, choose a colour next to the search bar that matches in thinkorswim, pull up a quote and thinkorswim will follow your lead. In fact, it’s so thorough that some users argue it is currently the best in the industry.

Having said that, some reviews suggest an ability to screen and set advanced alerts would improve the Mobile Trader app even further.

Methods of Payment

Clients can make direct deposits and withdraw funds with relative ease through the TD Ameritrade network.

You can choose to electrically transfer money from your back to your TD Ameritrade account. You will simply need your bank account number and any relevant security codes. Completion usually takes 30 minutes to 3 business days. However, you have to transfer a minimum of $50 and can transfer a maximum of $250,000.

The most popular funding method is wire transfer. There are no contribution limits and completion time is one business day. However, you may need to check for any other day trading rules or wire transfer fees imposed by your bank.

You can also use Paypal to fund your account and make withdrawals. Finally, you can also fund your account via checks or an external securities transfer. It may also be worth heading to their website to check for any current rewards or offers for using specific funding methods.

Demo Account

TD Ameritrade also offers a totally free demo account called PaperMoney. Funded with simulated money, you don’t have to risk real capital until you feel confident. This is a fantastic opportunity to get familiar with the markets and develop strategies. It’s also a fantastic way to test the TD Ameritrade trading platform.

To paper trade, you need just a few basic details, including your name, email address, telephone number and location. Once your confidence has grown, it’s then straightforward to close your demo account and upgrade to a live trading account.

Additional Features

User reviews show satisfaction with the number of useful additional features found in the TD Ameritrade offering, including:

  • Social Signals – The Social Signals feature provides a real-time streaming feed of algorithmically filtered relevant tweets. You also get a summary chart of the most talked about brands. Many feel this is easier to use than StockTwits.
  • Peer Comparison – The Peer Comparison tab allows you to locate clean customisable charts displaying a security’s recent performance against its competitors. This is then followed up with a table of relevant metrics.
  • Free research – You can find streaming news from Zacks, Dow Jones, briefing.com, plus a number of other sources. In addition, there is analysis from Market Edge, CFRA, Credit Suisse and Vickers.
  • Interactive learning – TD Ameritrade offers a range of ways you can learn, from videos and articles to slideshows and quizzes. In addition, they will monitor your progress and awards points and virtual trophies as you improve. In fact, video training reviews are quick to highlight how comprehensive and useful their educational resources are.
  • Earnings calendar tools – This allows you to track earnings announcements of companies of interest. It can help you prepare for upcoming data releases and predict future price movements.

Regulation & License

In the day trading world, it’s important you can trust your broker. Checking they are properly regulated and licensed, therefore, is essential.

Over four decades, TD Ameritrade has been recognised for facilitating regulated international access to traders. The company is regulated by FINRA. In addition, clients accounts are protected under FDIC (deposit accounts held at TD Bank) and SIPC. On top of that, excess-SIPC coverage is provided by London insurers.

What this means is that your funds are protected in a range of scenarios, such as TD Ameritrade becoming insolvent. They are licensed in numerous locations, from the USA to Hong Kong. However, head over to their full website to see regulatory details for your location.

Benefits

There are a number of very good reasons to choose TD Ameritrade, including:

  • There is a huge selection of instruments.
  • You get fast and reliable customer service.
  • You can make advanced orders, including OCO and brackets.
  • TD Ameritrade provides rich in-depth research and educational resources.
  • Extended 24/7 trading hours allows for international access to the markets.
  • They facilitate automatic synching between desktop and mobile trading platforms.
  • There is access to over 350 technical studies, 20 drawing tools and 8 Fibonacci tools.
  • You get free access to the advanced thinkorswim platform, with no account minimum.
  • There is access to over 100 commission-free ETFs and hundreds of no-transaction-fee mutual funds.
  • Portfolio margin gives some users increased leverage by basing margin requirements on total portfolio risk.
  • You can choose between three trading platforms, ensuring there is a platform for traders of all experience levels.
  • There are automated trading capabilities, including robo-advisors from their Investment
  • Management Services and Essential Portfolios. Reviews of which show high levels of customer satisfaction.
  • The Economic Data tool allows access to a range of data about the health of global economies.
  • On the platform, you will find active chat rooms to share ideas and communicate with thousands of experienced traders.

Drawbacks

Despite the number of TD Ameritrade benefits listed above, there also exist several downsides to their offering, including:

  • Trading costs are inescapably high. When you put TD Ameritrade vs OptionsHouse and other competitors, you realise TD Ameritrade’s commission rates for stocks and ETFs, in particular, are well above the industry norm.
  • You will be hit with a $19.99 short-term trading fee if you sell any of your commission-free ETFs within 30 days.
  • Broker-assisted trade commissions are around $44.99, while other firms keep prices around $25 to $35.
  • You also have stringent margin maintenance requirements to contend with.
  • Security could be improved through the use of a two-factor authentication feature. A feature which several competitors do offer.
  • New traders may be overwhelmed by the vast amount of information and tools available. As a result, novice traders may want to look for a cleaner more streamlined trading platform.

For those trading bitcoin to penny stocks, all of the above points have dragged down TD Ameritrade reviews and ratings. However, there remain numerous positives. So whether the pros outweigh the cons will be a personal choice.

Trading Hours

TD Ameritrade trading and office hours are industry standard. The company was one of the first to announce it would offer 24-hour trading. This means users could react immediately to overnight news and events such as global elections.

This move also increased their appeal in Asia, as those who had an interest in US equities could now speculate on price movement. In the off-hours between Sunday 20:00 EST and Friday 20:00 EST, customers can trade 12 ETFs.

So, for those interested in premarket hours and a range of instruments, from index funds to bitcoin (BTC) futures and options, there will always be a trade opportunity at TD Ameritrade.

Contact & Customer Support

TD Ameritrade now offers 24/7 support via email, text and even Facebook Messenger. User reviews show wait time for phone support was less than two minutes. Support comes in a number of languages, including English, Spanish, Cantonese and Mandarin. Simply head over to their website for the 24-hour number where you are based.

Emails are usually returned within 12 hours. Agents are well trained with an in-depth knowledge of both trading platforms and accounts. They should be able to help you with any TD Ameritrade.com login problems, or when the website goes down.

Unfortunately, the ‘Ask Ted’ live chat support is only for clients using the thinkorswim platform. So, there is room for improvement in this area. But if you do have access to live chat, they can help you with everything from forgotten usernames and premarket trading to referral bonuses and options approval.

Overall then, reviews show traders were extremely content with TD Ameritrade’s customer support and helpdesk. But if you want direct contact, you could head down to their numerous offices or attend one of their events. You can also head to their ‘Contact Us’ section for the nearest mailing address in your location.

A Brief History

From their headquarters in Omaha, Nebraska, TD Ameritrade have been serving customers since 1971. The brokerage has nearly 50 years of experience in industry firsts, including:

  • 1998 – TD Ameritrade were among the first to introduce touch-tone trading.
  • 1994 – They were also one of the first to pioneer online day trading.
  • Late 1990s – TD Ameritrade introduced online options order entry and electronic trade confirmations through email.
  • 2000s – They were the first to guarantee trade execution speeds of 10 seconds and introduce paperless account creation.

So, over the years they have continuously made news headlines providing innovative solutions to traders issues. As a result, they now offer truly global trading in a huge range of instruments, including bitcoin, money market mutual funds, bonds, and other fixed-income securities.

Head over to their official website and you will see the aim of the brokerage exchange has always remained the same. They have “been empowering clients by helping them take control of their financial lives.” But what do user reviews say when you delve beneath the headlines?

Safety & Security

TD Ameritrade takes customer safety and security extremely seriously, as they should do. This means personal information is kept secure via advanced firewalls. Anomaly detection and intrusion technology are also used to detect any unusual behaviour from your account.

TD Ameritrade websites are secure and use 128-bit encryption to transmit all data between your computer and their websites.

There is also a TD Ameritrade’s Asset Protection Guarantee which will reimburse your account if you lose any funds as a result of unauthorised activity. Their website states they will “reimburse you for the cash or shares of securities you lost.”

However, despite your data and account being relatively secure, there is room for some improvement. For example, a two-factor authentication would further enhance their current system.

TD Ameritrade Verdict

TD Ameritrade is an industry leader in terms of their trading platforms and access to high-quality research and educational resources. Throw in a $0 minimum deposit requirement, detailed user guides and access to after-hours trading, and they should be a serious contender on your broker shortlist.

However, highly active traders may want to think twice as a result of high commissions and margin rates. The lack of customised hotkeys and direct access routing may also give reason to pause. Overall then, if you’re a moderately active trader who wants a powerful platform and access to extensive research, then TD Ameritrade could well be the right choice.

Accepted Countries

TD Ameritrade only accepts traders from United States.

TD Ameritrade Review

Excellent for beginners and a great mobile experience

Investopedia is committed to rigorous editorial standards to provide our readers with the best advice and recommendations. We may receive compensation when you click on links to products we reviewed. Learn more about our methodology and review process.

  • Account Minimum: $0
  • Fees: Free stock, ETF, and per-leg options trading commissions in the U.S., as of October 3rd, 2020. $0.65 per options contract.

TD Ameritrade remains one of the largest online brokers and it has continued to build on its edge with beginner investors. TD Ameritrade reaches customers and prospects with on-ramps to its services constructed on a variety of social media sites, including Twitter and Facebook. Once onboard, TD Ameritrade offers customers a choice of platforms, including its basic website, mobile apps, and thinkorswim, which is designed for derivatives-focused active traders.

Although Charles Schwab announced that it was acquiring TD Ameritrade at the end of Nov. 2020, the merger of the two brokerage behemoths is expected to take several years to complete. In the meantime, TD Ameritrade is functioning as a separate entity, so we will look at how it ranks as a standalone brokerage and help you decide whether it is a good fit for your investing needs.

Key Takeaways

  • Rated our best broker for beginners and best stock trading app.
  • Education is a key component of TD Ameritrade’s offerings.
  • Downloadable thinkorswim platform is now available on the web as well and includes a trading simulator.
  • Focused on improving its mobile experience and functionality in 2020.

Who TD Ameritrade Is For

TD Ameritrade is one of the larger online brokers in the U.S., so it offers multiple platforms aimed at different levels of expertise. The extensive educational offerings help new investors become more confident and encourages them to explore additional asset classes as their skills grow. For active investors and traders, the thinkorswim platform offers all the data, charting, and tools needed to find market opportunities. The sheer number of tools and research available through TD Ameritrade can be a bit overwhelming.

Extensive research capabilities and numerous news feeds

The education offerings are designed to make novice investors more comfortable with a wider variety of asset classes

Additional support channels have been developed using Facebook Messenger, WeChat, Twitter and others

Clients may have to use more than one trading system to find all the tools they want to use

The website is so packed with content and tools that finding a particular item is difficult

Pros Explained

  • TD Ameritrade optimized its traditional website for mobile browsers with a dashboard where clients can quickly access account details, balances, balance history, positions, news, and more. The well-designed mobile apps are intended to give customers a simple one-page experience where they can quickly check in on the markets and their accounts.
  • The thinkorswim downloadable platform’s toolset has been largely copied over to the web. That means customers can use its powerful analysis tools and real-time streaming data to trade equities, options, futures, options on futures, and forex on the web. To reflect its growing footprint in Asia, TD Ameritrade made the platform available in traditional as well as simplified Chinese.
  • Taking advantage of the physical locations TD Ameritrade acquired when it purchased Scottrade several years ago, the broker offers in-person education at more than 280 offices as well as multiple training pathways available on its website and mobile apps. In addition, the TD Ameritrade Network offers nine hours of live programming in addition to on-demand content. 
  • Streaming real-time data on thinkorswim, the website, and the mobile apps is unlimited.

Cons Explained

  • Customers may have to use multiple platforms to utilize preferred tools. Options-specific tools abound on thinkorswim, but fundamental research for equities and fixed income tools are mostly available only on the website. This is a common issue shared by large brokers with multiple platforms.
  • TD Ameritrade clients can choose from a huge array of account types, which should be an advantage. However, it can lead to confusion for new investors who are unsure of what they mean. During the setup process, there should be more help available for clients to be sure they are starting out with the correct account type.
  • Over-the-counter (penny stock) trades are subject to a commission of $6.95 per trade.
  • Clients are paid a tiny rate of interest on uninvested cash (0.01–0.05%) unless they take action to move cash into money market funds.

Usability

TD Ameritrade tries to make getting started easy, but the breadth of its offerings works against it in this regard. New customers can open and fund an account on the website or mobile apps. The tricky part, however, is choosing the correct account type as TD Ameritrade has a lot to choose from. Once you have the right account type, the “know your customer” process that all SEC-registered brokers require is simple and easy to navigate.

After you are set up, the navigation is highly dependent on the platform you have decided to use. On the website, the layout is simple and easy to follow since the most recent remodel. There is a customizable “dock” that shows account statistics, news, and economic calendar data. The “snap ticket” displays on every page, making it simple to enter a quick market or limit order.

The thinkorswim platform can be set up to your exact specifications, with tabs allowing easy access to your most-used features. Customization options on the website are limited, while on thinkorswim, you can specify everything from the tools on each page to the font used to the background color. Every aspect of trading defaults can be set on thinkorswim. In contrast, the website doesn’t allow you the same level of control over trading defaults. Most customization options are stored in the cloud, so once you have set them up, they follow you from one device to another.

TD Ameritrade has native mobile apps for iOS and Android as well as a mobile web experience that resizes the screen according to the device you’re using. If you set up a watchlist on one platform, it will be accessible elsewhere. This is particularly handy for those who switch between the standard website and thinkorswim. All available asset classes can be traded on mobile devices.

Trade Experience

Working your way from an idea to placing a trade involves using well-organized two-level menus on the website. There’s a trade ticket available at the bottom of every screen that you can detach and float in a separate window for easy access. Charts can also be detached and floated to set up a trading environment, but this is a more involved process compared to what is available through thinkorswim. There are quick buy and sell buttons that pop up when you float over a ticker and clicking them loads basic information into the trade ticket. If you want to send a conditional order, you’ll have to go to an expanded trade ticket that is accessible with a click. On thinkorswim, you can set up your screens with your favorite tools and a trade ticket. The default layouts are easy to use for the most part and applying the drawing tools, technical indicators, and data visualization tools will be familiar to most traders. Thinkorswim allows traders to create their own analysis tools as well use a built-in programming language called thinkScript.

On the web, you can customize the order type (market, limit, etc.), order quantity, order side (buy or sell), and tax-lot methodology. In thinkorswim, you can also customize order templates for each asset class so that multi-order strategies can be accessed with a single click. You can stage orders for later entry on all platforms.

Mobile Trade Experience

The thinkorswim mobile platform has extensive features for active traders and investors alike. The workflow for options, stocks, and futures is intuitive and powerful. You’ll find lots of bells and whistles that make the mobile app a complete solution for most trading purposes, including streaming real-time data and the ability to trade from charts. The regular mobile platform is almost identical in features to the website, so it’s an easy transition.

TD Ameritrade Review 2020

&#127942 Top 5 Stock Brokers:

&#127942 Top 5 Forex Brokers:

Summary

Recommended for investors and traders looking for solid research and a well-equipped desktop trading platform

TD Ameritrade was founded in 1978 and it is one of the biggest US-based stockbrokers . It is regulated by top-tier regulators like the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).

TD Ameritrade is considered a safe broker since it has a long track record, is listed on a stock exchange, has a banking background, discloses its financials, and is regulated by top-tier regulators.

We selected TD Ameritrade as Best desktop trading platform and Best broker for options for 2020, based on an in-depth analysis of 57 online brokers that included testing their live accounts. Check out the complete list of winners.

TD Ameritrade pros and cons

TD Ameritrade’s trading fees are low and it has one of the best desktop trading platforms, Thinkorswim. The customer support team gives fast and relevant answers.

With a TD Ameritrade account you can trade only in the US markets. The account opening is slow and not fully online. TD doesn’t provide credit/debit cards and electronic wallets for money transfers.

Pros Cons
• Low trading fees (free stock and ETF trading) • You can trade only in the US markets
• Superb desktop trading platform • Slow and not fully digital account opening
• Great customer support • No credit/debit cards and electronic wallets for money transfer
TD Ameritrade main features and highlights
��️ Country of regulation USA
�� Trading fees class Low
�� Inactivity fee charged No
�� Withdrawal fee amount $0
�� Minimum deposit $0
�� Time to open an account 1-3 days
�� Demo account provided Yes
��️ Products offered Stock, ETF, Forex, Fund, Bond, Options, Futures

Gergely Korpos

Author of this review

Everything you find on BrokerChooser is based on reliable data and unbiased information. We combine our 10+ years finance experience with readers feedback. Read more about our methodology

TD Ameritrade review
Fees

TD Ameritrade provides free stock and ETF trading. The forex, bond, and options fees are low as well. On the other hand, they charge high fees for mutual funds.

Pros Cons
• Low trading fees • High fund fees
• Low non-trading fees
• Free stocks and ETFs
TD Ameritrade fees snapshot
Assets Fee level Fee terms
US stock Low Free stock and ETF trading
EURUSD Low The fees are built into spread, 1 pips is the average spread cost.
Mutual fund High $49.99 per transaction, there are also

4,000 free funds

Inactivity fee Low No inactivity fee

How we ranked fees

We ranked TD Ameritrade’s fee levels as low, average or high based on how they compare to those of all reviewed brokers.

To get things rolling, let’s go over some lingo related to broker fees. What you need to keep an eye on are trading fees, and non-trading fees.

  • Trading fees occur when you trade. These can be commissions, spreads, financing rates and conversion fees.
  • Non-trading fees include charges not directly related to trading, like withdrawal fees or inactivity fees.

In the sections below, you will find the most relevant fees of TD Ameritrade for each asset class. For example, in the case of stock investing, commissions are the most important fees.

We also compared TD Ameritrade’s fees with those of two similar brokers we selected, Charles Schwab and E-Trade. This selection is based on objective factors such as products offered, client profile, fee structure, etc. See a more detailed rundown of TD Ameritrade alternatives.

To have a clear overview of TD Ameritrade, let’s start with the trading fees.

TD Ameritrade trading fees

TD Ameritrade trading fees are low. In 2020, many US brokers, including TD Ameritrade, removed the commission of stocks and ETFs.

Stock fees and ETF fees

TD Ameritrade provides free stocks and ETFs.

TD Ameritrade stock and ETF commission of a $2,000 trade

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
US stock $0.0 $0.0 $0.0

If you prefer stock trading on margin or short sale, you should check TD Ameritrade financing rates.

But what is the financing rate? A financing rate, or margin rate, is charged when you trade on margin or short a stock. This basically means that you borrow money or stocks from your broker to trade. For this borrowed money/stock you have to pay interest. This is the financing rate. It can be a significant proportion of your trading costs.

TD Ameritrade has high margin rates.

TD Ameritrade annual financing rates for stocks, futures and options

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
USD margin rate 10.3% 9.3% 9.8%

TD Ameritrade’s financing rates are volume-tiered. It applies a base rate plus a premium/discount depending on the borrowed amount. The base rate is set by TD Ameritrade and it can change in time. At the time of our review, the base rate was 9.0%

TD Ameritrade – annual financing rates

Debit balance Rate% Base rate + / –
$250,000 – $999,999 8.25% -0.75%
$100,000 – $249,999 8.50% -0.50%
$50,000 – $99,999 8.75% -0.25%
$25,000 – $49,999 9.75% +0.75%
$10,000 – $24,999 10.00% +1.00%
Under $10,000 10.25% +1.25%

The financing rates above are also applied for options and futures trading, not just stocks.

Forex fees

TD Ameritrade’s forex fees are low. Charles Schwab and E-Trade doesn’t offer forex trading.

To have a clear picture on forex fees we calculated a forex benchmark fee for major currency pairs. This catch-all benchmark includes commissions, spreads and financing costs for all brokers.

Forex benchmark fee of a $20,000 30:1 long position held for one week

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade Interactive Brokers
EURUSD benchmark fee $13.0 $17.9
GBPUSD benchmark fee $9.3 $13.6
AUDUSD benchmark fee $13.3 $12.0
EURCHF benchmark fee $5.3 $7.1
EURGBP benchmark fee $9.7 $13.0

Fund fees

TD Ameritrade charges generally high fees for funds.

TD Ameritrade commission for a $2,000 fund purchase

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
Mutual fund

4,000 free mutual funds”> $24.8

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
US Treasury bond $0.0 $0.0 $0.0

There is no commission for the US Treasury bonds. In the case of corporate bonds, TD Ameritrade will charge $1 per bond on secondary transactions (subject to a $10 minimum and a maximum of $500).

Options fees

TD Ameritrade options fees are low.

TD Ameritrade stock index options commission of 10 contracts

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
US stock index options $6.5 $6.5 $6.5

The options fees are based on the number of traded options contracts.

Futures fees

TD Ameritrade futures fees are average and are calculated on a volume base, $2.25 per contract.

TD Ameritrade stock index futures commission of 10 contracts

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
US stock index futures $22.5 $15.0 $15.0

Non-trading fees

TD Ameritrade has low non-trading fees. For instance, there is no inactivity fee.

There is no withdrawal fee either if you use ACH transfer. The withdrawals to other banks using wire transfer cost $25. Clients outside the US can only use this wire transfer. We tested ACH, so we had no withdrawal fee.

TD Ameritrade non-trading fees

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
Account fee No No No
Inactivity fee No No No
Deposit fee $0 $0 $0
Withdrawal fee $0 $0 $0

TD Ameritrade review
Account opening

As a new client, you can change from many different account types at TD Ameritrade and as US citizen you will face no minimum deposit. Unfortunately, the process is not fully digital.

Pros Cons
• No minimum deposit • Not fully digital
• Many account types

Can you open an account?

TD Ameritrade targets U.S. clients. On the other hand, we discovered some countries where TD Ameritrade is available: China, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore. For Canadian clients the TD Direct Investing solutions are available within the TD Group, but not TD Ameritrade.

Watch out! The offered services may vary in different countries. For example, clients from Hong Kong, Malaysia and Singapore can’t trade with mutual funds and forex, only stocks, ETFs, and options are provided.

What is the minimum deposit at TD Ameritrade?

The required TD Ameritrade minimum deposit is $0 for U.S. clients if you choose the basic cash account. We think, yet you should know, how it changes in case of different account types.

TD Ameritrade minimum deposit

Trading preferences Minimum deposit
Trading at basic accounts $0, but electronic funding has a $50 minimum
Margin trading* $2,000
Day trading $25,000
Trading with TD Ameritrade portfolios $5,000 – $250,000

*You trade with money borrowed from the broker, also called trading on leverage

The minimum deposit for non-US clients can be higher. For example, the minimum deposit is $3,500 for Malaysian and Singaporean clients.

Account types

TD Ameritrade offers several account types:

TD Ameritrade account types

Account type Short description
Individual The account is owned by a single individual
Joint accounts Two or more account owners
The account is owned by a legal entity
Retirement accounts (Traditional IRA, Roth IRA, etc.) Individual retirement accounts which are available only for US clients
Pension accounts For self-employed individuals and small businesses which are only available for US clients
College savings, e.g. 529 Plan Accounts for college savings plans which are available only for US clients
Custodial or Guardianship accounts Special accounts which are available only for US clients
Trust The account owner entitled to transfer assets to one or more trustee which is available only for US clients
Accounts for trading with portfolios managed by TD Ameritrade, these accounts are available only for US clients

In this review, we tested the Individual Brokerage Account.

How to open your account

TD Ameritrade has straightforward, but not fully digital account opening process. When you complete the online account opening form, you have to mail or fax the generated document and the copy of the relevant ID card to TD Ameritrade. It took us 3 business days for us to open the account.

In the following steps, we walk you through the account opening at TD Ameritrade:

  1. Choose the account type, state your investment/trading preferences
  2. Add personal information, like Social Security Number, residency, and your employment status
  3. Review your information
  4. Acknowledge the terms and conditions
  5. Print and mail/fax the application

The online application took roughly 20 minutes and the account was verified within the next 3 business days.

TD Ameritrade review
Deposit and withdrawal

TD Ameritrade has user-friendly account funding and charges no deposit fees, but are several drawbacks as well. You can use only bank transfer and a high fee is charged for wire transfer withdrawals.

Pros Cons
• No deposit fee • Credit/Debit card not available
• User-friendly • High withdrawal fee for wire transfers

Account base currencies

At TD Ameritrade, you can hold your cash only in USD.

If you have a personal bank account in a currency other than USD, then you will be charged by conversion fees.

A convenient way to save on currency conversion fees is by opening a multi-currency bank account at a digital bank. Revolut or Transferwise both offer bank accounts in several currencies with great currency exchange rates as well as free or cheap international bank transfers. Opening an account only takes a few minutes on your phone.

Deposit fees and options

Let’s start with the good news. TD Ameritrade charges no deposit fees. In terms of deposit options, the selection varies. U.S. clients can use checks, ACH, and wire transfers, while clients from Hong Kong, Malaysia, and Singapore can use only wire transfer and checks to deposit.

Unfortunately, credit/debit cards and electronic wallets are missing.

TD Ameritrade deposit options

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
Bank transfer Yes Yes Yes
Credit/Debit card No No No
Electronic wallets No No No

We tested ACH transfer and it took 1 business day. The minimum transfer amount is $50. The wire transfer can take several business days.

You can only deposit money from accounts that are in your name.

TD Ameritrade withdrawal fees and options

TD Ameritrade charges no withdrawal fees in most of the cases. The only exception we find is the bank/ wire transfer, which costs $25.

TD Ameritrade withdrawal fees and options

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
Bank Transfer Yes Yes Yes
Credit/Debit card No No No
Electronic wallets No No No
Withdrawal fee $0 $0 $0

How long does it take to withdraw money from TD Ameritrade? We tested the ACH withdrawal and it took 2 business days.

You can only withdraw money to accounts in your name.

Follow us through the next steps to see how to withdraw money from TD Ameritrade:

  • Log into the account
  • Go to the ‘My account’
  • Select the ‘Deposits and transfers \ Withdrawal’ menu
  • Your TD Ameritrade account is pre-selected as ‘Transfer from’
  • Select the account you want to withdraw the money to as ‘To bank connection’
  • Add the amount you wish to withdraw and set the frequency and date of the withdrawal
  • Initiate the withdrawal

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TD Ameritrade review
Web trading platform

TD Ameritrade offers a good web-based trading platform with a clean design. On the flip side, there is no two-step login and the platform is not customizable.

Pros Cons
• User-friendly • No two-step (safer) login
• Clear fee report • Limited customizability (for charts, workspace)
• Good variety of order types
TD Ameritrade platforms to choose from
Trading platform Score Available
Web 3.8 / 5 stars Yes
Mobile 4.4 / 5 stars Yes
Desktop 4.8 / 5 stars Yes

Let’s point out our key findings on the platform selection first. TD Ameritrade offers both web and desktop trading platforms. The first, web is suitable for trading execution and research on investment products, like stocks and ETFs. You are interested in trading with complex products? No worries, then Thinkorswim is just right for you. Thinkorswim is the inhouse developed desktop platform of TD Ameritrade. This offers more products as forex and futures and has sophisticated technical research tools.

The web trading platform is available in English, Chinese .

The following table summarizes the main features of the web trading platform and the Thinkorswim desktop trading platform.

TD Ameritrade – web and desktop platform compare and contrast

Web trading platform Thinkorswim
Stocks, ETFs, options Yes Yes
Mutual funds Yes Quotes only
Fixed incomes Yes No
Futures, options on futures, forex No Yes
Charting Yes Yes, more advanced
Research & third-party analysis Yes Yes, but limited
Demo account No Yes
Newsfeed Yes Yes

Look and feel

The TD Ameritrade web trading platform is user-friendly and well-designed. However, it is not customizable.

Login and security

TD Ameritrade provides only a one-step login authentication. A two-step login would be more secure.

When you first log in on a new device, you have to give an answer to your security question. After the registration, you can access your account using your regular ID and password combo.

Search functions

The search functions are OK. We were happy to see that automatic suggestion works on the platform. You can search by typing both a company’s name or asset’s ticker.

On the flip side, the relevancy could be further improved. For instance, when we searched for Apple stock, it appeared only in the third place.

Placing orders

You can use the following order types:

  • Market,
  • Limit,
  • Stop-Market,
  • Stop-limit,
  • Trailing stop %,
  • Trailing stop $

If you are not familiar with the basic order types, read this overview.

There are also order time limits you can use:

  • Good ‘til canceled (GTC),
  • Good ‘til canceled extended hours,
  • Day,
  • Day + extended hours,
  • Extended hours am/pm,
  • Immediate or Cancel (IOC),
  • Fill or Kill (FOK),
  • All or Nothing (AON)

Alerts and notifications

You can set a broad range of alerts and notifications. If you want to set them, go to ‘Research & Ideas’ and select ‘Alerts’ section.

You can set up alerts on 2 email addresses and 2 phones to stay tuned.

Portfolio and fee reports

TD Ameritrade has clear portfolio and fee reports. Go to ‘My Accounts’, select ‘History & statements’ and finally select the ‘Transactions‘ section.

You can download the reports, but only in CSV format.

TD Ameritrade review
Mobile trading platform

The TD Ameritrade Mobile trading platform is great. It is user-friendly and well-designed. However, it lacks the two-step login.

Pros Cons
• User-friendly • No two-step (safer) login
• Good search function
• Price alerts

It is great that TD Ameritrade offers two mobile trading platforms. Based on the level of your proficiency and goals, you can select which one you want to use. To show you a clear picture, we summarized the main differences between the two.

TD Ameritrade mobile trading platforms

TD Ameritrade Mobile TD Ameritrade Mobile Trader
Stocks, ETFs, options Yes Yes
Futures, forex No Yes
Mutual funds Only quotes Only quotes
Conditional trading, virtual trading, chart drawing No Yes

In this review, we tested TD Ameritrade Mobile.

The app is available both for iOS and Android, but our test was done on iOS. The mobile trading platform is available in English .

Look and feel

Similarly to the web trading platform, TD Ameritrade mobile platform is user-friendly, has only a one-step login, provides an OK search function, and you can easily set alerts.

Placing orders

The order types and order time limits are limited compared to the web platform. You can use the following order types:

There are also order time limits you can use:

  • Fill or Kill (FOK),
  • All or Nothing (AON)

TD Ameritrade review
Desktop trading platform

The Thinkorswim desktop platform is one of the best on the market, we really liked it. The only feature we missed was the two-step authentication.

Pros Cons
• User-friendly • No two-step (safer) login
• Clear fee report
• Good customizability (for charts, workspace)
• Trading support functions
• Great learning materials

Thinkorswim is available in English and Chinese .

Look and feel

Thinkorwsim has a great design and it is easy to use. It is also highly customizable, you can easily set your own layouts.

Login and security

Security, similarly to web and mobile trading platforms, provides only a one-step login. A two-step login would be safer.

Search functions

The search functions are OK. You can search for an asset by typing its name or ticker as Thinkorswim has an automatic suggestion feature. We were not 100% delighted with the relevancy. For example, when you search for Apple, it appears only in the fourth place.

Placing orders

You can use several order types:

  • Market,
  • Market on close,
  • Limit, Limit on Close,
  • Stop-Market,
  • Stop-limit,
  • Trailing stop %,
  • Trailing stop $

There are also order time limits you can use:

  • Good ‘til canceled (GTC),
  • Good ‘til canceled extended hours,
  • Day, Day + extended hours,
  • Extended hours am/pm,
  • Fill or Kill (FOK),
  • All or Nothing (AON)

Alerts and notifications

You can set alerts and notifications on the Thinkorswim desktop trading platform by using the MarketWatch function.

From price to news alerts, you can find a lot of alert types. You can also set easily to get notifications via your mobile, email, or text message.

Portfolio and fee reports

TD Ameritrade has clear portfolio and fee reports. Go to ‘Account information’, if you want to check them. You can easily customize the tab and add commission reports, profit/loss balance, margin level, etc.

TD Ameritrade review
Markets and products

At TD Ameritrade you can trade with a lot of asset classes, from stocks to futures and forex. We also liked the additional features like social trading and the robo-advisory service. On the other hand, the offered products cover only the U.S. market.

The availability of products may vary in different countries. For example, clients from Singapore can only trade with stock, ETF, options, and futures. US clients can trade with all the products listed below.

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
Stock Yes Yes Yes
ETF Yes Yes Yes
Forex Yes No No
Fund Yes Yes Yes
Bond Yes Yes Yes
Options Yes Yes Yes
Futures Yes Yes Yes
CFD No No No
Crypto No No No

In the following lines, we share a clear overview of TD Ameritrade’s product offering in comparison with its competitors.

Stocks and ETFs

During our TD Ameritrade review, we discovered that it covers products only from the U.S. market. It offers roughly the same number of stock exchanges and ETFs as Charles Schwab or E-Trade.

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
Stock markets (#) 5 4 5
ETFs (#) 2,300 2,300 2,300

You can trade on the following stock exchanges: NYSE, NASDAQ, AMEX, OTCBB, other OTCs.

Forex

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
Currency pairs (#) 77

Funds

The selection of funds is great, it beats Charles Schwab and E-Trade.

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
Fund providers (#) 740 600 530

You can find funds from the biggest fund providers like BlackRock or Vanguard and from smaller ones too.

Bonds

TD Ameritrade has a smaller bond selection compared to Charles Schwab and E-Trade.

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
Bonds (#) 40,000 60,000 88,000

TD Ameritrade’s bond offer covers both government and corporate bonds.

Options

At options offer, TD Ameritrade is average if you compare with brokers, like Interactive Brokers that gives access to options markets all over the world.

In comparison with its closest competitors, like Charles Schwab or E-Trade, the available number of options markets is great.

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
Options markets (#) 8 8 1

We found the following exchanges available: CBOE, AMEX, PHLX, ISE, BOX, NASDAQ, NYSE BATS, and C2.

Futures

Similarly to options, the futures offer is average as well.

TD Ameritrade Charles Schwab E-Trade
Futures markets (#) 5 8 3

You can trade with futures on these exchanges: CFE, CME, ICE, ICE EU, LIFFE.

Social signals

TD Ameritrade supports social trading via Thinkorswim. Under the “Tools” menu you can set up a public profile, and with the help of this, you can follow fellow traders and share your own results.

This is a good opportunity for searching for new ideas or if you like one, easy to follow: just a few clicks and you can confirm your copied deal. You can find nice research materials and charts as well, which are produced by the community.

TD Ameritrade Managed Portfolios

TD Ameritrade offers three managed portfolios which are great if you need help to manage your investments.

  • Essential Portfolios
  • Selective Portfolios
  • Personalized Portfolios

The Essential Portfolios is a robo-advisory service. First, you have to answer questions about your investment goal, risk tolerance, and time horizon. Based on your answers, you can choose from five ETF portfolios. These portfolios will be automatically rebalanced when needed. $5,000 is the minimum to start a TD Ameritrade Essential Portfolio.

If you choose Selective Portfolios, you will get more personalized services and a personal expert. The minimum to start this premium account is $25,000.

From $250,000 TD Ameritrade offers a professionally managed Personalized Portfolio.

TD Ameritrade review
Research

TD Ameritrade has great research tools. You can use many tools, including trading ideas and detailed fundamental data.

Pros Cons
• Good interactive chart None
• Trading ideas
• Data on asset fundamentals

Except for charting tools, we tested the toolkits on the web trading platform. We tested the charting tool on Thinkorswim desktop platform as it seemed better than other platforms’ charting tools.

Similarly to the trading platforms, the research tools are available in English and Chinese.

Trading ideas

Are you a beginner or in the phase of testing your trading strategy? We have good news for you.TD Ameritrade provides trading and investment ideas for stocks and ETFs, mutual funds, and fixed incomes.

To have a clear view, worth to note the ideas come from third-party providers, such as analyst outlooks from TD Group, CFRA, Thomas Reuters, etc. The overviews and ideas are separated by timing or equities.

  • The stocks are assessed by several third-party analysis. For example, we found 8 third-party analysis at Apple, usually giving recommendations as well.
  • ETF‘s rating is supported by CFRA, and TheStreet, however, plenty of market reports are also available.
  • You can also find Morningstar ratings for mutual funds.

Fundamental data

TD Ameritrade offers fundamental data, mainly on stocks. Go to ‘Fundamentals‘ and look for ‘Financial statements for 5years’ or ‘Basic performance and rating metrics’. At the same line under ‘Earnings‘, ‘Valuation‘, and ‘Peer Comparison‘ we found a huge amount of information. Yet, our favorite part was the benchmarking under the Valuation menu.

Charting

TD Ameritrade has good charting tools. You can use 400 technical indicators and the charts are easily editable. By the way, the number of indicators TD Ameritrade offers is one of the most extensive on the market.

Newsfeed

The newsfeed is OK. It was easy to read for us, but we missed visual elements, like charts or pictures. It is provided by thirdparties, like Benzinga, CNBC, MarketWatch, etc.

Other research tools you will enjoy

You can use well-equipped screeners. If you want to try them, go to ‘Research & Ideas‘ and select ‘Screeners. From the basic company information to technical indicators, you can use a wide range of filters.

TD Ameritrade review
Customer service

TD Ameritrade has great customer service. They are available 24/7 and give relevant answers.

Pros Cons
• Phone support None
• Live chat
• Fast response time

In our test, we tried all three channels of customer support:

The customer support line is available in English, Chinese and Spanish languages.

The live chat is great. The answers are fast and relevant.

The phone support is also good. The customer support team was very kind and gave relevant answers. The response time was OK as an agent was connected within a few minutes.

The email was also quick and relevant, we got our answers within 1 day.

It is also a big plus that TD Ameritrade support team is available 24/7.

TD Ameritrade review
Education

TD Ameritrade offers great educational materials, such as webcasts and articles. The top league Thinkorswim platform has a demo account with a virtual balance for head-starting without any risk.

Pros Cons
• Demo account None
• Trading platform tutorial
• Educational videos

Beyond the demo account, TD Ameritrade offers many other ways to improve your knowledge:

  • Demo account
  • Platform tutorial videos
  • General educational videos
  • Webinars
  • Quality educational articles

We really liked the papermoney demo account/trading simulation and the webcast videos. The papermoney account is powered by Thinkorswim offering the full range of professional trading and charting tools while testing your skills cost even not a penny. The account gives access to the complex markets (options, futures, etc) with a dedicated amount of virtual money (in the case of stocks & ETFs it is virtual $100,000).

Worth to mention that the Thinkorswim platform has a separate learning center, where we found useful articles and education materials (besides the platform’s FAQ). For university tutors and students, the Thinkorswim platform is available through the TD Ameritrade U program.

The webinars (called webcast) are focusing on various subjects and different levels (from beginners to advanced) and scheduled basically all day long (10-11 times/business day, except Friday). Don’ worry if you cannot catch any real-time occasion. It’s available later as well.

TD Ameritrade review
Safety

TD Ameritrade is regulated by top-tier US regulators, like the SEC and the FINRA. You are also protected by a high investor protection amount, $500,000 for securities and $250,000 for cash. On the negative side, negative balance protection is not provided.

Pros Cons
• Majority of clients belong to a top-tier financial authority • No negative balance protection
• High level of investor protection
• Banking background

Is TD Ameritrade regulated?

Yes, it is regulated by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission, Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) .

TD Ameritrade is based in USA and was founded in 1978.

Is TD Ameritrade safe?

To be certain, we highly advise to check two facts:

  • how you are protected if something goes wrong
  • and what the background of the broker is.

TD Ameritrade operates several legal entities, but all customers are covered by the U.S. investor protection scheme, called SIPC. This is because the US legal entity, TD Ameritrade Clearing, Inc. provides clearing and custodial services, holds the assets on behalf of other legal entities.

The SIPC investor protection scheme protects against the loss of cash and securities in case the broker goes bust. The limit of SIPC protection is $500,000, which includes a $250,000 limit for cash. This amount is substantially higher than the amount most national investor protection schemes provide. Plus, the TD Ameritrade has an additional insurance policy, which results in a total coverage up to $152 million ($2 million cash limit) per client and $500 million aggregated limit.

Not all investments are protected by SIPC. In general, SIPC covers notes, stocks, bonds, mutual funds and other investment company shares, and other registered securities. It does not cover instruments such as unregistered investment contracts, unregistered limited partnerships, fixed annuity contracts, currency, and interests in gold, silver, or other commodity futures contracts or commodity options.

For summarizing the different regulators, legal entities, investor protection amounts, we compiled this handy table:

TD Ameritrade legal entities

SIPC: $500,000 ($250,000 cash limit) plus additional insurance

Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)

Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA)

Country of clients/Product Protection amount Regulator Legal entity
TD Ameritrade, Inc.
Hong Kong SIPC: $500,000 ($250,000 cash limit) plus additional insurance Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission TD Ameritrade Hong Kong Ltd.
Malaysia, Singapore SIPC: $500,000 ($250,000 cash limit) plus additional insurance Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) TD Ameritrade Singapore Pte. Ltd.
Futures & Forex No protection Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) TD Ameritrade Futures & Forex LLC.

TD Ameritrade does not provide negative balance protection.

Background

TD Ameritrade was established in 1978. The longer track record a broker has, the more proof we have that it has successfully survived previous financial crises.

A good chunk of TD Ameritrade’s common stocks is owned by the Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD), therefore TD Ameritrade has a banking background, and as such, it is subject to tougher regulation than brokers.

TD Ameritrade is listed on the stock exchange, NASDAQ, which is a big plus for safety as TD Ameritrade releases financial statements regularly and transparently.

Having a banking license, being listed on a stock exchange, providing financial statements, and regulated by a top-tier regulator are all great signs for TD Ameritrade’s safety.

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