How to Buy Stocks on E*TRADE

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Contributor, Benzinga
May 20, 2021

E*TRADE remains a top online broker option for all types of investors. E*TRADE offers 3 different trading platforms and a wide variety of investment choices. The company prides itself on simplicity — you can trade, research and bank all on the same platform.

How to Buy Stocks on E*TRADE

  1. Open an E*TRADE Account.

    You’ll be able to access the market in a matter of minutes, once you start an E*TRADE account, but first, you need to open an account. Make your way to E*TRADE's website and look for the “Open An Account” button in the top right-hand corner.

    E*TRADE offers a multitude of account options, so you’ll need to define your goals before getting started. Let's take a look at your options with E*TRADE.

    Open An E*Trade Account
    The taxable brokerage account offers options for joint and custodial management. Once you decide which type of account to open, take a little time to familiarize yourself with E*Trade in detail.

  2. Fund your Account

    You’ll need to fund your account after you open it. Connect your new E*TRADE account with your bank to transfer funds for trading, or you can send a check.

    E*TRADE doesn't require an account minimum to get started.

  3. Understand Fees and Trading Platforms

    Understand Fees And Trading Platforms

    E*TRADE’s price structure is better for investors making 30 or more trades per quarter. Still, the fees aren’t outrageous for the service provided and you do get access to the latest research. E*TRADE Premium is available to clients who make 30 trades per month or have $250,000 account balances; otherwise, you’ll pay $99 for the extra offers.

    E*TRADE has three different trading platforms. E*TRADE Pro is a specialized trading application with impressive research and charting tools. Called OptionsHouse, you’ll have access to 30 different chart drawing features.

    The web platform isn’t as high-tech as OptionsHouse, but it has a simple interface and charting tools. Professional guidance is available and you can trade stocks from 77 different countries. The mobile app is similar to the web platform, but enables you to trade from anywhere in the world.

  4. Figure Out Which Stocks to Buy

    E*TRADE offers not only stocks, but ETFs, mutual funds, options, and futures.

    Stocks come in several categories: individual company stocks, large cap stocks, small cap stocks, microcap stocks, stock baskets, sector stocks and so on.
    Figure Out Which Stocks To Buy
    You can easily add new stocks to your portfolio with a few clicks, regardless of which platform you’re using.

    Just type the desired stock symbol under the stocks tab and locate the security you want to purchase.

    Then, decide on the type of order you want to place. Market orders will purchase the stock immediately and limit orders will purchase the stock when it reaches (or drops to) a certain price.

    Once you’ve entered your order preferences, execute the trade.

Trade with E*TRADE

Disclosure: E*TRADE charges $0 commission for online US-listed stock, ETF, and options trades. Exclusions may apply and E*TRADE reserves the right to charge variable commission rates. The standard options contract fee is $0.65 per contract (or $0.50 per contract for customers who execute at least 30 stock, ETF, and options trades per quarter). The retail online $0 commission does not apply to Over-the-Counter (OTC), foreign stock transactions, large block transactions requiring special handling, transaction-fee mutual funds, futures, or fixed income investments. Service charges apply for trades placed through a broker ($25). Stock plan account transactions are subject to a separate commission schedule. Additional regulatory and exchange fees may apply. For more information about pricing, visit

E*TRADE’s platforms make it easy to buy and sell stocks with the swipe of a finger. The commissions are higher than some other online brokerages, but E*TRADE combines extensive research tools with reliable customer service to provide unique value to customers.

An E*TRADE account gets you access to current events and economic news, as well as theories and strategies for maximizing returns. E*TRADE was a trailblazer as an online brokerage and you won’t find many platforms that make it easier to save and invest.

Alternatives to E*TRADE

Not convinced E*TRADE is the right brokerage for you? Check out a few of our other favorites brokers.

Frequently Asked Questions on E*TRADE


How long do deposits take on E*TRADE?


It depends if you’re making your deposit by cash or check. If you deposit by check you can expect around 5 business days once it’s been received. If you’re transferring a deposit into your account by wire transfer then it will appear in your account the same business day if it’s before 6pm EST.


How much does E*TRADE charge per trade?


It is free to trade stocks and ETFs on E*TRADE but there is a mutual fund commission of $19.95. In addition, the maintenance and annual IRA fees are $0.


Is E*TRADE a good place for novices?


E*TRADE allows beginners to learn about trading through their educational tools, tutorials and customer services (when they have questions or need help).


How many day trades can I do per day?


FINRA allows no more than 4 trades per day.