ChoiceTrade is excellent for high-volume options traders using the $20 per trade limit commission-free options trading at $0.40 per contract. If you trade over 50 contracts for each transaction, your fees are capped at $20. Regulatory expenses, exchange fees, and surcharges for cash-settled options are additional. The proposition for ChoiceTrade is simple. ChoiceTrade features tools for options traders and is reasonably priced.
List of Contents
Overview : ChoiceTrade
Country of regulation: USA
Trading fees class: Low
Inactivity fee charged: Yes
Withdrawal fee amount: $5
Minimum deposit: $100
Time to open an account: 1-3 Days
Demo account provided: Yes
Products offered: Stock, ETF, Options
ChoiceTrade is a US brokerage authorized by the SEC and FINRA, two of the highest-ranking US regulators. ChoiceTrade does not impose a fee on transactions of listed stocks and ETFs. The mobile trading platform is straightforward to use. The account opening process is entirely digital and quick, uncommon among US brokers. ChoiceTrade withdrawal costs are expensive, at $60 for non-US citizens and $35 for US residents. The quarterly inactivity cost of $35 is equally costly. To initiate a withdrawal, you must contact customer service; only a bank transfer is possible. It is only possible to trade stocks, ETFs, and options.
- Monday–Friday, 9–5 phone support is available (Eastern time). Phones are answered quickly.
- Customers can’t chat online.
- Open phone lines have live brokers.
- The website doesn’t specify which countries support non-U.S. accounts.
- The website supports over 100 languages.
ChoiceTrade offers U.S. stocks, ETFs, and options. The company doesn’t support mutual funds, fixed income, futures, futures options, commodities, international assets, currencies, or cryptocurrencies. ChoiceTrade’s limited offering is understandable, but it still limits traders. ChoiceTrade allows:
- Stocks on the easy-to-borrow list (including OTC)
- Simple and multi-leg choices (up to four legs)
ChoiceTrade offers commission-free stock, ETF, and options trading (options have a $0.40 per contract fee with a $20 limit). NYSE, Nasdaq, and AMEX stocks and ETFs traded at $1 or more per share qualify for zero-commission trades. Surcharges apply to other stocks. Pre- and post-market trades cost $0.005/share. ChoiceTrade’s $20-per-option cap can save high-volume options traders money.
ChoiceTrade’s commissions and fees:
- Most stocks and ETFs cost nothing.
- OTCBB/penny stocks cost $12 each.
- Leg-based options commission is $0.
- Options per contract fee are $0.40, $20 cap per trade, 250 contracts per leg, and a max of 4 legs per trade.
- Margin interest is Fed Funds plus six points. (August 2022 Fed Funds is 2.33%, so 8.33%)
- Non-U.S. accounts pay $10 monthly.
- $40 quarterly inactivity fee if you make at most five trades.
- Accounts closed without trading cost $25.
- Full transfers cost $75 and partial transfers $35.
- $5 for exercise and assignment.
- $50 for voluntary corporate action.
- Outgoing domestic wires cost $35, international ones $60.
- ChoiceTrade doesn’t print checks, so there are no fees.
- Paper trade confirmations cost $1 (minimum $5 per month).
- $10 per paper statement
- Customers pay fractional clearing and exchange fees.
- ChoiceTrade Elite charges $24.99 per month for accounts under $30,000.
ChoiceTrade’s order types are functional but constrained, as in other areas. You can place limit and stop orders for various kinds and enter the market.
Account opening with ChoiceTrade is easy. You can open an account online, request a new account packet via mail, or download the necessary forms from the website. Account creation online is simple. Start by entering your citizenship status (U.S. citizen, resident alien, or non-resident) and selecting an account type (individual, joint, custodial, IRA, or specialty) (i.e., corporate, non-profit, investment club, LLC, partnership, or trust). Cash accounts commence at $100, margin accounts at $2,000, and day trading accounts at $25,000.
ChoiceTrade’s web platform is easy to set up but needs to be updated and more convenient. The broker’s newest platform is ChoiceTrade Elite by iVest. ChoiceTrade Elite is more straightforward to use than the website and web-based application. The Elite platform offers superior charting and the ability to drag-and-drop widgets to personalize trading workflows. ChoiceTrade Elite costs $29.95 per month but is free for accounts with a minimum balance of $30,000. QuoteStream ($14.95–$24.95/month) and DasTrader ($135) are the company’s other trading platforms; however, we only reviewed the web, Elite, and mobile app platforms.
ChoiceTrade is downloadable on Android and iOS. On mobile and web platforms, stocks, ETFs, and options may be traded. All web order types are supported on the mobile application. You must be familiar with ticker symbols to create watchlists. Company searches cannot be conducted despite the “SEARCH COMPANY” button. Following configuration on a standard trading website, the app streams real-time news or quotes but has limited charting, research, and news capabilities.
The standard website for ChoiceTrade could be more convenient. Streaming quotes are available, but the charting needs to be updated compared to competing brokers’ platforms. Nonetheless, you can choose a chart type (line, area, OHLC, candlestick, or hollow candle) and a timeframe between one minute and ten years. Quick graphs need more technical indicators.
Streaming data and widgets allow you to customize the workflow of the Elite platform. The ChoiceTrade Convenience Tool automates the verification and submission of newsletter trades. The order ticket is simple, and there is no trading directly from the chart.
Account and Research Amenities
ChoiceTrade lacks particular account and research features typical of larger brokers. It provides limited research tools such as screeners, trading idea generators, and charts.
- Stock Screener: The web screener from ChoiceTrade is simple. The screener on ChoiceTrade Elite gives you real-time data and lets you make changes. Make a new watchlist or add results from a screener.
- ETF and Mutual Fund Screener: ChoiceTrade lacks ETF and mutual fund screeners. ETFs appear in stock screener results.
- Options Screener: The Elite platform’s “Find” tab has several tools for generating options trading ideas. Your market outlook suggests trades.
- Fixed Income Screener: ChoiceTrade does not have a screener for fixed income.
- Tools and Calculators: ChoiceTrade lacks retirement, investment, and life planning calculators. Open a trade ticket and do a fundamental trade analysis by clicking the options tab on each stock’s research page. Journalize the transaction. ChoiceTrade Elite made a good research heat map.
- Trading Idea Generators: On the Elite platform, covered calls, bullish options strategies, and others lead to stock information pages. Click the options tab for a pre-loaded trade ticket. Lightly analyze the suggested trade and use a slider to change the order price.
- News: ChoiceTrade provides stock and market data like any broker. Each Elite stock page is equipped with a news feed and StockTwits posts. Benzinga’s real-time news costs $99 per month.
- Third-Party Research: ChoiceTrade platforms lack third-party research.
- Charting: ChoiceTrade’s standard web platform has minimal charting. Elite’s charting package includes many options, studies, and ways to assess a strategy’s profit potential. This platform isn’t for advanced technical analysis.
- Cash Management: ChoiceTrade does not offer cash sweeps of uninvested funds.
- Fractional Dividend Reinvestment Program (DRIP): ChoiceTrade does not offer a dividend reinvestment program.
- SRI/ESG Research Amenities: ChoiceTrade does not support SRI or ESG screening.
ChoiceTrade has made some recent enhancements, but it still has work to do to provide enhanced security for its customers.
- No two-factor authentication is available.
- ChoiceTrade is a member of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC); thus, accounts are covered to a limit of $500,000 ($250,000 for cash). They have no extra SIPC insurance coverage.
- There were no recent platform failures or data breaches at the organization.
ChoiceTrade is straightforward regarding its commissions and costs, which are explained in detail on its website. While the initial and maintenance margin requirements for various positions are briefly described on the website, there is no indication of the margin interest rate you will pay beyond the statement, “Our margin rate is Fed Funds + 6 points.” Some consumers may be qualified for reduced margin rates; however, you must contact the firm for specifics.
Available Account Types
- Individual and joint taxable trading accounts
- Managing accounts
- Specialty accounts include accounts for limited liability companies, investment clubs, corporations, trusts, partnerships, and non-profit organizations.
The majority of traders will open individual taxable accounts. ChoiceTrade only provides a few tools to assist these specialist accounts and has stopped accepting personal retirement accounts (IRAs).
ChoiceTrade’s educational options are limited. The Elite platform has videos for platform walkthroughs and brief and comprehensive user instructions. ChoiceTrade provides demo accounts, which clients and potential customers may use to familiarize themselves with the platform and practice placing trades.
Pros and Cons
✔ J.D. Power customer satisfaction scores are the highest.
✔ Excellent average NCQA plan rating
✔ Members have access to complimentary mental health resources.
✘ Plans are marketed in eight states and the District of Columbia.
✘ Limited plan types
- Options transaction charges are set at $20 per trade, allowing high-volume traders to manage their expenses. If you trade more than 50 contracts per transaction, you will reach the $20 limit and not be charged the $0.40 per contract price for the remaining contracts. The more significant your relative savings with ChoiceTrade are, the more you trade above the limit.
- You may construct your desired layout by dragging and dropping widgets on the ChoiceTrade Elite platform, a browser-based streaming website. Displays for option chains can also be customized.
- The auto staging tool (the ChoiceTrade Convenience Tool) enables you to manage your newsletter subscription trade triggers without manually entering them. The device is populated with trades advised by newsletters, allowing you to examine them and select which to submit to the market.
- ChoiceTrade provides support for U.S. stocks, ETFs, and options. Other trading products, such as mutual funds, fixed income, futures, futures options, commodities, FX, and cryptocurrencies, are unavailable to customers.
- There are few news alternatives on ChoiceTrade. They need more breadth of possibilities offered by larger brokers. Benzinga offers real-time streaming news for $99 per month.
- The only free platform available is ChoiceTrade’s primary web platform, which is obsolete and offers limited capabilities. You may either maintain $30,000 in your account or pay a monthly access charge of $29.95. QuoteStream Trader costs between $14.95 and $24.95 per month, and DasTrader costs $135.
Is ChoiceTrade A Worth Broker to Get?
ChoiceTrade’s competitors have expanded and invested considerably in platform features and capabilities. ChoiceTrade’s platform, products, and educational/research resources must be more vital. The firm may appeal to specific options traders, but most traders and investors need more here. If the firm upgrades its goods, this may alter. ChoiceTrade can only currently provide investors with strong options traders.
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