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Scottrade Review

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  • Pros
  • Excellent customer service
  • No fees for account maintenance/inactivity
  • 3,000+ mutual funds to choose from
  • 500+ local branches
  • IRA calculator
  • Cons
  • 0.5% of principal value commission for stocks under $1

Scottrade IRA Accounts

New and old investors alike will be thrilled to see the array of options Scottrade has to offer as well as the top-notch customer service representatives that stand behind you. Within their Flexible Reinvestment Program, you can select from a Roth IRA or Traditional IRA-both which come highly rated. Scottrade has the largest branch network among online investment companies with over 500 locations.

Scottrade's menu of investment products, that your funds can be invested in include stocks, bonds, mutual funds and exchange traded funds (ETFs). The site offers access to objective third-party research for their account holders, such as access to Standard & Poors views and news, as well as the S&P ranking changes. The availability of these educational tools and information at the Scottrade site insures your savings are working hard to help you meet your financial goals.

Fee Structure

Scottrade online trading fees begin at $7 for stock and ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds). Broker assisted trades and phone trades incur higher fees, and some investment options such as mutual funds may incur higher fees depending on the fund and type of trade. The fee structure for all trades and services is readily available at the Transparent Trading Fees page at the Scottrade website. There are no account maintenance fees.

Execution of Trades

Scottrade is noteworthy for its efficient trade execution, the process of completing the transaction between the buy and seller of a particular stock or financial instrument. Remember that prices continuously change while the markets are open, so it's important that your broker quickly completes your transaction. With Scottrade, investors can be sure that they are getting the price they want when they click to complete a transaction.

Roll Over Existing IRA accounts

If you have an old 401(k) or IRA you can roll it over into a Scottrade account and then have access to the full range of investment choices. What's more they'll refund any transfer-out fees when you roll over to a Scottrade IRA.

When you roll over an IRA or old 401(k) to Scottrade, they help you gain a holistic view of your investment planning to allow you to reach specific financial goals while avoiding negative tax consequences.

A traditional 401(k) plan can be rolled over to a traditional IRA, while a Roth 401(k) rolls over into a Roth IRA. You can roll over all your assets from the existing account, or only part if you prefer. After the roll over, you can continue to make contributions to the new Scottrade account. Earnings will grow tax-deferred with the traditional IRA account, and tax-free with a Roth IRA account.

Tax-Free Growth with a Roth IRA

Opening a Scottrade Roth IRA allows you to make after-tax retirement contributions, and subsequently your money grows tax-free, provided it is in the account for at least 5 years. While the contributions are not tax-deductible, your money grows tax-free. Withdrawals from a Roth IRA are made tax-free, provided you follow the rules. The Roth option allows you the security of counting on a specific amount of tax-free assets, and there are no required minimum distributions. You can contribute up to $5,500 per year to your Roth IRA up to age 49, and up to $6,500 per year if you are age 50 or more.

Scottrade Traditional IRA

The traditional IRA is a great vehicle for reaching your retirement goals, as there are no annual income limits on who can open an account, and your contributions are tax-deferred. For some, depending on your income and eligibility, contributions to the IRA account may also be tax-deductible. Annual contribution limits are the same as they are for the Roth IRA, up to $5,500 for those up to age 49, and $6,500 for those who are 50-years-old or older. There are penalties for withdrawals prior to age 59 ½. Withdrawals made after age 59 ½ are taxed as ordinary income.

The SEP IRA

For the self-employed, Scottrade offers the Simplified Employee Pension, or SEP IRA. The selling point here is that you may be able to make higher annual contributions than with the traditional or Roth IRA, should you be fortunate to have the income for such high contributions. The self-employed must calculate their maximum allowed contribution using a worksheet available from the IRS website. Spend a few minutes on this calculation and reap the rewards down the line.

The SEP IRA functions like the traditional IRA in that contributions are tax-deferred, until withdrawal.

Scottrade SIMPLE IRA

This is another IRA that the self-employed can use, but it's also aimed at small business, so if you work for a small business you can ask your employer if they can offer a SIMPLE IRA via Scottrade. The advantage here is the high annual allowable contributions of up to $12,500 for those age 49 or less, and $15,500 for those 50 or older. This type of IRA also allows you to build your nest-egg with tax-deferred dollars.

Scottrade Resources and Customer Service

Shopping for an IRA can be a bit confusing with all the choices available. Scottrade has a great tool on their IRA landing page, called Find Out Which IRA is Right For You. Scroll through the tool for a quick introduction to your options, and when you are ready to open an account you can do it in about ten minutes. You will need your basic personal and financial information to start your IRA.

Scottrade is ready with multiple options for customer support. You can contact your local Scottrade branch during regular business hours, or call their toll-free number during their extended business hours. Use the online tool to find your nearest local branch. You can also access customer service via chat and email, or via social media on Facebook or Twitter.

Whether you're interested in a Rollover IRA or one of the many other types they offer (Traditional, Roth, SEP, or Simple) you can count on the expertise and financial fortitude of this provider.

Scottrade's website couldn't be easier to navigate and with a comprehensive knowledge center, you're guaranteed a wealth of new and up-to-date information. Monitor your balances on the go with their mobile ready application and even if your account goes inactive you won't be penalized with a fee.

Verdict - Very Good

With over 3,000 mutual funds to choose from, no account maintenance fees and a range of investment IRA options, Scottrade comes out on top. Online stock trades are $7 and the online tutorials can help you get started if you're unsure about the tools at your disposal. Seriously consider Scottrade if you want to grow your nest egg.

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Scottrade Consumer Reviews

Average Customer Rating

6 out of 10 rating 6 2 User Reviews

User Rating Distribution

Ratings: 10 - 9 0
Ratings: 8 - 7 1
Ratings: 6 - 5 0
Ratings: 4 - 3 1
Ratings: 2 - 1 0
8 out of 10 rating 8 Good sign up promotions Mobile app

Since being with Scottrade I have had no issues. They offer good deals and promotions when you first sign up and it is easy to use. The only problem is the mobile app is useless, so if you are looking for a good program to be able to use on your phone, this is not hte one for you.

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4 out of 10 rating 4 None Do not offer what they advertise

I chose to sign up with Scottrade because of what they advertised they offered, but what they say they offer, they certainley do not provide.

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In order for MoneySavingPro to remain a consumer free service, many of the companies covered in our industry reviews compensate MoneySavingPro for new sign ups.

However, the results of our comparison tools, the rankings of the providers and the information presented is not affected by compensation. Indeed, many of these companies approach us for an advertising partnership after we have already written a published their reviews.

While we try to research and review as many providers as possible in the 100+ industries we cover, we have not reviewed every company available.

Our rating system is independent of compensation and reflects our true understanding of the industry and the company based on a variety of factors. The companies that receive the highest rating will always be the providers that we believe offer the best value to the consumer.

Advertiser Disclosure

In order for MoneySavingPro to remain a consumer free service, many of the companies covered in our industry reviews compensate MoneySavingPro for new sign ups.

However, the results of our comparison tools, the rankings of the providers and the information presented is not affected by compensation. Indeed, many of these companies approach us for an advertising partnership after we have already written a published their reviews.

While we try to research and review as many providers as possible in the 100+ industries we cover, we have not reviewed every company available.

Our rating system is independent of compensation and reflects our true understanding of the industry and the company based on a variety of factors. The companies that receive the highest rating will always be the providers that we believe offer the best value to the consumer.