The investment brokerage industry has become incredibly competitive, with firms routinely offering all kinds of incentives – from cash bonuses to free trades and more. As can be expected, the offers – and the firms making them – change throughout the year. Here is a list of the best broker promotions, deals and bonuses of 2019.
Below is a list of ten brokerage firms and their promotions, deals and bonuses in 2019. It’s up to you to decide which is the best offer for your particular situation, so we’ve listed them in alphabetical order for your to peruse. Enjoy!
TD Ameritrade is offering 60 days of commission-free trades and up to $600 in cash bonuses based on the amount you transfer into one of their accounts. The offer applies to both regular and IRA accounts.
The cash bonus amount is determined based on the size of your deposit:
- No bonus, but free trades for up to 60 days with a minimum deposit of $3,000
- $100 bonus, plus free trades for up to 60 days with a deposit between $25,000 and $99,999
- >$300 bonus, plus free trades for up to 60 days with a deposit between $100,000 and $249,999
- >$600 bonus, plus free trades for up to 60 days with a deposit of $250,000 or more
The free trading offer applies to stocks, ETFs, and options. In order to qualify, you must make the qualifying balance deposit within 60 days of opening your account. You also must maintain the initial deposit amount for a minimum of 12 months.
Ally Invest is currently offering two different types of bonuses for new account holders. If frequent trading is your thing, they have a bonus of 90 days free trading (up to 200 trades) and if you’re after cash, they’ll offer up $200.
Here are the details on both:
- 90 days of free trading – When you open an account with an initial deposit of at least $10,000, you’re in line for 90 days of free trading. This includes both stocks and options contracts. The $10,000 must remain in the account for a period of 90 days (minus any trading losses). If you remove the amount of money from the account before the 90 days are up, Ally can charge you the cost of the trades.
- $200 cash bonus – If you have $25,000 to deposit then you can take advantage of the $200 cash bonus offer. The $25,000 must be deposited within the first 15 days of account opening and must remain in the account for a period of 90 days. Three trades must also be made within the first 90 days. No more than 10 days after you’ve satisfied the bonus requirements, the $200 will be deposited in your account. It must remain there for at least 120 days before it can be withdrawn.
Scottrade, the people who brought us the $7 trade, are offering a bonus of 700 free trades or up to $2,500 in a cash bonus.
The bonus arrangement looks like this:
- $100 bonus on deposits of $50,000 to $99,999
- $300 bonus on deposits of $100,000 to $249,999
- $600 bonus on deposits of $250,000 to $499,999
- $1,000 bonus on deposits of $500,000 to $999,999
- $2,500 bonus on deposits of $1 million or more
Funds must come from sources outside Scottrade and must remain on deposit for a minimum of one year.
In addition, Scottrade will also reimburse account transfer fees of up to $100 when you transfer your account with a value of $10,000 or more.
In addition to regular low stock trading fees of $8.95 per trade, Charles Schwab is currently offering 500 commission-free online trades for an entire year. The offer includes quarterly one-on-one check-in sessions with a trading coach over the course of the year.
In order to qualify, you need to open a new account and make a net deposit of $50,000 or more. The deposit must be made within 45 days of opening the new account.
E*Trade is currently offering a cash bonus of up to $2,500, plus 60 days of free trades. The offer however is based on a sliding scale, and looks like this:
- $2,500 bonus + free trades on deposits of $1,000,000 or more
- $1,200 bonus + free trades on deposits between $500,000 and $999,999
- $600 bonus + free trades on deposits between $250,000 and $499,999
- $300 bonus + free trades on deposits between $100,000 and $249,999
- $200 bonus + free trades on deposits between $25,000 and $99,999
- Only free trades on deposits between $10,000 and $24,999
The offers apply to both regular brokerage accounts and IRAs. Regular stock commissions are $9.95 per trade, and IRAs have no annual fee. In order to qualify for the offers, you must deposit the required minimum for each bonus within 60 of opening the account.
Fidelity Investments already offers an attractive investment platform with regular stock trades at $7.95 per trade. But they are also offering a free trades bonus with both regular accounts and IRAs. The offer is open to both new accounts and new deposits into existing accounts.
Like E*Trade, Fidelity Investments also uses a sliding scale but only two tiers for free trades
- $50,000 – $99,999 deposit – 100 free trades
- $100,000+ deposit – 200 free trades
The offer is open to both new and existing account holders. You must designate an existing eligible Fidelity brokerage IRA or brokerage account or open and fund a new eligible Fidelity brokerage IRA or brokerage account. The bonus will be calculated on net deposits into the qualifying account over a 60-day period from the time of registration.
FirsTrade is offering up to 500 commission-free trades for 30 days. Eligibility rules require you to open a new account and deposit at least $2,000 into it within 30 days of opening. That’s on top of their already low stock trading fee of $6.95 per trade.
They are also offering cash bonuses for larger deposits, in addition to 500 commission-free trades for 30 days:
- 500 Free trades on $2,000 minimum deposit
- $100 bonus + free trades on deposits between $25,000 and $49,999
- $200 bonus + free trades on deposits between $50,000 and $99,999
- $300 bonus + free trades on deposits over $100,000
The account must remain open for 12 months with the minimum funding or assets required for participating in the offer. If not, FirsTrade may charge the account for the cash and commission credits awarded to the account. Qualified IRA account holders must also have a brokerage account with FirsTrade to receive cash rewards.
FirsTrade does disclose that they will issue a Form 1099 on bonuses paid of $600 or more during the calendar year.
FirsTrade is also offering to rebate up to $200 in transfer fees if you transfer at least $10,000 from another brokerage firm.
Merrill Edge is offering 300 no-fee online trades when you open up a new account with them (the normal trading fee is $6.95 per trade). The free trade offer applies to trades on both stocks and ETFs.
Along with the free trades, they are also offering the following bonus schedule:
- $20,000 or more, $100 bonus
- $50,000 or more, $150 bonus
- $100,000 or more, $250 bonus
- $200,000 or more, $600 bonus
On the surface, this doesn’t look as generous as the previous broker bonuses, but on closer inspection, you’ll see that the $600 kicks in at $200,000, while the others all require $250,000 to get the same bonus money.
The offer applies to new accounts only. You must make a qualifying deposit to your new account within 45 days and maintain the deposit for a minimum of 90 days. Like FirsTrade, Merrill Edge confirms that they may issue a 1099 on the cash bonus.
USAA is offering 50 free trades.
To be eligible the trade must be an equity security, 1,000 shares or less, priced greater than $1, and placed through a self-service channel. Options are not subject to the free trades. After 50 free trades or 90 days (whichever comes first) the account will revert to your gold or platinum fee schedule, depending on asset and activity levels. The offer is good through December 31, 2015.
Have you taken advantage of any of these promotional offers yet?Topics: Investing