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Best brokers for free stock trading in the US in 2023

Fidelity Logo
1st place
Fidelity
TD Ameritrade Logo
2nd place
TD Ameritrade
E*TRADE Logo
3rd place
E*TRADE

How did we pick the best brokers for free stock trading in the US in 2023?

  • We checked whether the broker is overseen by a trusted regulator
  • We checked stock fees at over 100 brokers
  • We looked beyond “no commission” pledges to check non-trading fees and other costs
  • We used real money to test all trading platforms for user-friendliness and functionality
  • We assessed market coverage and the overall quality of each broker's services
Save hours of research!
Our expert team has done all the work for you, and reviewed brokers based on BrokerChooser's unique methodology. This includes collecting more than 500 data points for each broker. Now let's jump straight to the results.


Top commission-free stock trading platforms in the US in 2023


  1. Fidelity - the best online broker for free stock trading in the US in 2023. Commission-free US stocks and ETFs. Great trading platforms and research. US and international stocks.
  2. TD Ameritrade - Low trading fees (free stock and ETF trading). Superb desktop trading platform. Great customer support.
  3. E*TRADE - Low trading fees (free stock and ETF trading). User-friendly mobile trading platform. Great research tools.
  4. Merrill Edge - Low trading fees. Easy and seamless account opening. Strong parent company.
  5. Charles Schwab - Free stock and ETF trading. Outstanding research. Great customer service.

Best brokers for free stock trading in the US in 2023
Overview

Despite all of them offering free stock trading, there can still be significant differences among zero-commission brokers. A good selection of stocks to trade, easy-to-use mobile apps or desktop trading platforms, the absence of add-on fees and a rock solid regulatory background can make all the difference.

Fidelity TD Ameritrade E*TRADE Merrill Edge Charles Schwab
Number of stock markets 25 4 5 4 4
Overall fee score 3.6 stars 4.1 stars 4.3 stars 4.4 stars 4.3 stars
Trading platform combined score 4.7 stars 4.6 stars 4.5 stars 4.5 stars 4.1 stars
Regulation Great Great Great Great Great

Best brokers for free stock trading in the US in 2023
Fees and platform features

Let's take a look at the key details of the best brokers for commission-free trading in the US in 2023.

Other fees and costs at the best free stock trading platforms

The promise of free stock trades can sour quickly if you need to deposit a fortune just to get started or pay a hefty fee simply to retrieve your funds. Here's what, if anything, the best free stock trading apps will charge you for services other than stock trading.

Fidelity TD Ameritrade E*TRADE Merrill Edge Charles Schwab
Inactivity fee No No No No No
Withdrawal fee $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Account fee No No No No No
Minimum deposit $0 $0 $0 $0 $0

Trading platform features and scores at the best commission-free brokers

A user-friendly trading interface, including easy search functions and offering secure login, can greatly enhance your trading comfort.

Fidelity TD Ameritrade E*TRADE Merrill Edge Charles Schwab
Desktop platform score 4.3 stars 4.5 stars - 4.3 stars 4.0 stars
Web platform score 4.5 stars 4.3 stars 4.5 stars 4.3 stars 4.3 stars
Mobile platform score 5.0 stars 4.8 stars 4.5 stars 4.8 stars 4.2 stars
Mobile two-step authentication Yes Yes No Yes Yes
Mobile search function Great Mid-range Great Mid-range Mid-range

Market coverage

The best free stock trading platforms offer you thousands of instruments to choose from, covering major US and global markets.

Fidelity TD Ameritrade E*TRADE Merrill Edge Charles Schwab
Number of stock markets 25 4 5 4 4
Number of ETFs 2,300 2,300 2,300 2,300 2,300
Fractional shares available Yes No No No Yes

Account opening and funding

Fidelity TD Ameritrade E*TRADE Merrill Edge Charles Schwab
Account opening score 4.2 stars 4.0 stars 4.2 stars 5.0 stars 4.6 stars
Deposit/withdrawal user-friendliness Great Great Great Great Great
Deposit by bank transfer Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Deposit by credit/debit card No No No No No
Deposit by electronic wallets Yes No No No No

Not sure which broker is best for you? For a tailored recommendation, check out our broker finder tool. You can enter your country and it will narrow down the list of brokers to those that are available where you live. Want more details? Compare brokers with the help of our in-depth comparison tool.

Best brokers for free stock trading in the US in 2023
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And now, let's see in detail which are the best brokers for free stock trading in 2023, one by one:

Fidelity Logo

#1 Best brokers for free stock trading in the US
Fidelity

Recommended for investors and traders looking for solid research and great trading platforms

Visit broker

Fidelity snapshot
US stockbroker
Countries served US
Overall score 4.8 stars
Time to open account 1-3 days
Overall fees score 3.6 stars
Markets/products score 4.0 stars
Read review For a detailed analysis of Fidelity, check out our review for 2023
TD Ameritrade Logo

#2 Best brokers for free stock trading in the US
TD Ameritrade

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

Visit broker

TD Ameritrade snapshot
US-based stockbroker
Countries served US, China, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Taiwan, Canada (through TD Direct Investing)
Overall score 4.9 stars
Time to open account 1-3 days
Overall fees score 4.1 stars
Markets/products score 3.9 stars
Read review For a detailed analysis of TD Ameritrade, check out our review for 2023
E*TRADE Logo

#3 Best brokers for free stock trading in the US
E*TRADE

Recommended for investors and traders looking for solid research and a great mobile trading platform

Visit broker

E*TRADE snapshot
US stockbroker
Countries served US
Overall score 4.8 stars
Time to open account 1-3 days
Overall fees score 4.3 stars
Markets/products score 2.9 stars
Read review For a detailed analysis of E*TRADE, check out our review for 2023
Merrill Edge Logo

#4 Best brokers for free stock trading in the US
Merrill Edge

Recommended for investors and traders looking for low fees, quick account opening and simple platforms

Visit broker

Merrill Edge snapshot
US discount broker
Countries served US
Overall score 4.8 stars
Time to open account 1 day
Overall fees score 4.4 stars
Markets/products score 2.5 stars
Read review For a detailed analysis of Merrill Edge, check out our review for 2023
Charles Schwab Logo

#5 Best brokers for free stock trading in the US
Charles Schwab

Recommended for investors and traders looking for solid research, low fees and great customer service

Visit broker

Charles Schwab snapshot
US discount broker
Countries served US
Overall score 4.8 stars
Time to open account 1 day
Overall fees score 4.3 stars
Markets/products score 3.1 stars
Read review For a detailed analysis of Charles Schwab, check out our review for 2023

Best brokers for free stock trading in the US in 2023
FAQ

What is commission-free stock trading?

Commission-free stock trading means that the broker does not charge you a fee for buying or selling a stock. Normally, brokers would charge either a flat fee or a per-share commission (or a combination of both) for stock trades. Commission-free stock trading was pioneered by US-based mobile-only broker Robinhood in the 2010s, and became near-universal among US brokers in 2019-20.

Is there a catch to free stock trading?

Brokers offering commission-free stock trading often make money from non-trading fees, from commissions on products other than stocks, or from routing clients' stock trade orders to specific market makers, a controversial practice called payment for order flow. In the latter case, customers often do not get the best execution price available on the market, and as such may incur an implicit (though small) cost on each stock trade.

Are free stock trading apps safe?

Your best bet to find a safe broker is to look for one that is regulated by a top-tier financial authority such as the US Securities and Exchanges Commission. In other aspects of safety, many stock trading apps require two-step authentication, where you are sent a one-time password or a similar prompt after entering your ID and regular password. A growing number of mobile trading apps also use biometric authentication (such as fingerprint readers) to make the login process more convenient without compromising security.

Best brokers for free stock trading in the US in 2023
Further reading on free stock trading

Author of this article

Ádám Nasli

Author of this article

Ádám worked in banking and investment, and holds a professional degree in this field. He is a motivated finance expert, having joined BrokerChooser in 2018. He's also eager to help people find the best investment provider for them, and to make the investment sector as transparent as possible. In his spare time, he loves learning new things, especially data science, algo-trading, programming and trading.

Ádám Nasli

Analyst head

Ádám worked in banking and investment, and holds a professional degree in this field. He is a motivated finance expert, having joined BrokerChooser in 2018. He's also eager to help people find the best investment provider for them, and to make the investment sector as transparent as possible. In his spare time, he loves learning new things, especially data science, algo-trading, programming and trading.

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

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