I just came across Smart Money’s 2009 discount broker survey, which ranks the most popular brokerage firms by categories like commissions, research, and customer service. E*Trade (ETFC) came out on top, with Fidelity and Charles Schwab (SCHW) rounding out the top 3.
However, I noticed that my broker of choice, thinkorswim, did not make it into the survey. You’d figure that the firm ranked #1 by Barron’s would make the cut.
Interactive Brokers (IBKR) also failed to make the cut. I found that a bit unusual given than thinkorswim is almost certainly bigger than companies like WallStreet*E and SogoTrade. And IB is just enormous – at least with active traders, though those guys probably don’t read Smart Money magazine.
I put an email into the good folks at Smart Money asking them if there’s any particular reason thinkorswim wasn’t included. I plan on giving thinkorswim a ring as well.
Maybe the merger with TD Ameritrade (AMTD) is a factor?
For now, here are the best discount brokers, as compiled by Smart Money. If I learn anything, I’ll post it here.
1) E*Trade (ETFC)
3) Charles Schwab (SCHW)
5) TD Ameritrade (AMTD)
6) Muriel Siebert
9) OptionsXpress (OXPS)
10) Banc of America (BAC)
15) Zecco Trading
Disclosure: I am an OptionXpress (OXPS) shareholder