In our never ending quest to bring you the best online discount broker, today we review TradeKing. In December of 2005, TradeKing opened for business as an online discount broker. Based out of Boca Raton Florida, TradeKing continues to receive awards from Smart Money and Barrons for service, quality and overall excellence, TradeKing excels in all areas. When compared to other online discount brokers, TradeKing ranks as one of the top options.
Probably the best thing feature TradeKing offers is a flat pricing structure. Unlike other brokers like E*Trade and Scottrade, TradeKing does not charge an additional fee for phone or broker assisted trades. Whether you’re on the road calling in a trade or sitting at home clicking “execute’, the cost is only $4.95. There are no tier levels or minimums that need to be met, so don’t expect to see hidden costs on your monthly statement for trades. Options trading holds the same structure as each trade is $4.95 and every contract is an additional $0.65. Again there are no tiers or extra costs associated with these prices, which makes them extremely attractive. Brokers like E*Trade and TD Ameritrade can charge in excess of $50 for broker assisted help, so TradeKing is certainly a thriftier option.
TradeKing Award Winning Customer Service
TradeKing offers the standard allotment of contact options, having phone support and live chat support available from 8am to 6pm ET Monday-Friday and email support available 24/7. TradeKing vows to reply to all emails during normal business hours within 120 minutes and within 24 hours on the weekend. Having had to contact them a few times through email, I can tell you that they are always quick to respond. In testing their live chat feature, I always had a representative within 60 seconds so it appears that all of the rewards for top-notch customer service are well deserved.
TradeKing Account Opening Process and Special Offers
Opening a TradeKing account is very easy. After filling out a few short forms online your application is approved within a few minutes and that’s it! TradeKing does have a pretty cool feature in that your password must be typed in on their online keyboard.
One of the other attractive features that TradeKing offers is cash bonuses for opening up a new account or transferring an existing account their way. Currently, if you open a TradeKing account before November 30th fund that account with at least $2,500 and make just 1 trade, TradeKing will give you an additional $50. If you are transferring an existing account, TradeKing will reimburse you up to $150 for the fees associated with the transfer. Plus, if you know a lot of wanna-be investors, you can earn $50 for every friend you refer to them. Not to shabby.
TradeKing Community and Special Features
Something that amazes me every-time I visit TradeKing.com is that they have a leaderboard which shows how some of their best investors are doing. The leaderboard lists the percentage increase that the user has experienced over a given time period as well as their last transaction. Unfortunately it does not tell you whether they bought or sold the investment, only that they traded it. Darn!
The TradeKing community is pretty large and informative. In addition to a lot of tutorial videos that help both amateur and experienced traders, TradeKing offers expert advice via online blogs and forums, and they even list over 18,000 members user names and how active those users are in the community.
All in all, TradeKing continues to thrive even though they are still less than four years old in the online discount broker space. With the low cost on trades, excellent customer service and allotment of free money for signing up now, it would be difficult to think of any reason why you shouldn’t use TradeKing for your online investing needs.
To learn more about TradeKing or to open an account, visit the official website.
Published or updated March 21, 2012.