WellsTrade Broker Review
WellsTrade is a branch of Wells Fargo that focuses on providing online broker services to its clients. They offer the standard financial trading instruments like stocks, options, ETFs, mutual funds and fixed income products like bonds and CDs. As a subsidiary of Wells Fargo who has been open since the 19th century, it’s safe to say that your money will be safe and that you can expect reliable technology and services. Their customer service was great even though it takes a while to open an account with their application process. They were there when I needed them and were able to answer all my questions in a quick and professional manner but what I liked most is that they are available 24/7.
WellsTrade has a ton of different resources for retirement and their investing education section is full of awesome articles from opening bank accounts, managing personal finances, investing in the market, retirement and education finances. This is a great place to check out for anyone but especially if you are young and are just starting out on your own. Since WellsTrade is a part of WellsFargo they have a lot to offer from excellent customer service to investing and retirement resources.
Commissions & Fees
WellsTrade has decent commission rates compared to other full service brokers with stocks costing $8.95 unless you also have a bank account with them and sign up for the PMA package that will reduce your commissions down to $6.95 which is a good deal. For options its a base price of $9.95 plus $1 per contract with exercises and assignments costing the the price of an agent assisted trade of $25 plus the normal commission. These prices are on the higher end of the scale with plenty of other discount brokers offering much cheaper prices than that. For instance, TradeKing has option commissions at just $4.95 plus $0.65 per contract so if you were gonna trade 10 contracts with them it would cost $11.45. With WellsTrade 10 contracts would cost you $19.95! That’s a big difference and will add up over the course of a year.
Trading Platforms & Tools
At WellsTrade, you will have access to their web-based online trading page that offers the bare essentials like real time quotes and market data, alerts, order status and basic charting capabilities. Their best feature is the news and research section that has a plethora or reports and analyst notes to read through. They do not offer direct market access or hotkey capabilities so speed will be lacking through WellsTrade. I wasn’t very impressed with their trading platform as it seemed sluggish and basic on just about all aspects. The one thing I did like is the simplicity of it all. There’s not a ton of tools and features so it makes things feel more streamlined. However, active traders could not use this to trade everyday as it is too slow but casual traders could get away with it especially if they are using another charting software.
Overall, WellsTrade is a solid broker that will meet the expectations of casual investors and traders but if you’re like me and trade for living you’re going to need more powerful tools including a trading platform that has direct market access and preferably a commission schedule based on shares traded not trades executed. They still offer plenty of resources with banking and retirement services more of their focus. However, I cannot recommend them for active traders because they do not have the necessary tools we require like a powerful trading platform and their commissions are just too high.
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