Schwab vs. TD Ameritrade

J Livermore

Junior member
15 1
This post is primarily aimed at any trader who may have recently picked an online broker for the first time in the last year or two, as I am new to the online world.

What experiences have you had with either TD Ameritrade and/or Charles Schwab? I am looking to re-enter the trading world after being a long term investor for years. The reason why I am focused on these two brokers is they both have offices near where I live and I want to be able to phone in an order to exit a position in the event my computer ever goes down.

Specifically, how helpful are they in answering your questions and guiding you in the use of their software? How easy do you find it to use their charting and other software? How quickly can buy/sell orders be placed once you see a trade you want to do?

What other advantages or negatives does each offer that the other doesn't?

Any advice you can give will be appreciated.
 

stillkicking

Member
56 16
I began using TD in 11/2018. While their commissions are a bit higher at $6.95 per trade, they give you their ThinkorSwim trading platform for free. I really like this platform as it gives me most everything I need to trade efficiently. Trades are instant if you do a market order. Best to have a decent speed connection to the internet, though. I have never had a system outage on their part but at my end, I do have two TOS systems running on separate computers in case I have an issue. TOS is very memory intensive so load up your system if it has less than 6 to 8 GB of RAM.

Their customer support is two fold. TD has theirs and TOS has their own. You can call, email or use either ones on-line support dialog. I get replies back the same day or next day, in most cases, if I use the two latter ones. My preferred method so I have it in writing.

They do offer you sessions with a trainer at their local offices as I did get a call from the one in my area offering to have me come in. They also give you this help from the main office on-line every six months, as I seem to recall. I have never taken advantage of either preferring to muddle through it on my own.

The TOS tech support is top notch, IMHO. They have always worked to resolve any issues I have had or will take the issue back to their in-house developers to work on for an update.

I'm quite satisfied and will continue using them.
 
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stillkicking

Member
56 16
Let me just add to my comments from yesterday... TD and TOS also gives you the Benzinga squawk box "radio feed" for free in real time. This would cost you $150/month to subscribe to on your own. You're getting up to the second, timely trading information all day long that is actionable and can make you $$.

Finally, TOS gives you paper trading to learn by. Not sure this is offered by Schwab's system
 

wackypete2

Legendary member
10,175 2,031
I agree with most of what Stillkicking has to say about TD Ameritrade. They have come a long way since I started with them daytrading via phone lines and 300 baud modem! The TOS platform is great but can be a little slow when the market heats up. Their customer service is professional and I've never had a serious problem in the many years I've used them.

Peter
 

J Livermore

Junior member
15 1
Does TD offer fundamental analysis? If so, how helpful and reliable have you found it to be? Do they offer FA from more than one source in order to offer choices?
 

J Livermore

Junior member
15 1
I began using TD in 11/2018. While their commissions are a bit higher at $6.95 per trade, they give you their ThinkorSwim trading platform for free. I really like this platform as it gives me most everything I need to trade efficiently. Trades are instant if you do a market order. Best to have a decent speed connection to the internet, though. I have never had a system outage on their part but at my end, I do have two TOS systems running on separate computers in case I have an issue. TOS is very memory intensive so load up your system if it has less than 6 to 8 GB of RAM.
I have a follow up question. Does TD have live brokers for phoning in orders? I realize the commission would be jacked up in price but if my internet connection ever went down it would be a necessity to exit my position.
 

wackypete2

Legendary member
10,175 2,031
I have a follow up question. Does TD have live brokers for phoning in orders? I realize the commission would be jacked up in price but if my internet connection ever went down it would be a necessity to exit my position.
Yes, they do have live phone brokers who are strictly business. Make sure you know what you want when you call especially during fast moving markets or near closing time.

Peter