OptionsXpress Review



OptionsXpress OptionsXpress have been around since 2000, it’s hard to believe they are over ten years old already. Initially created as an options broker they have gradually introduced more services over the years. As of 2011 they provide access to all investment products with the exception of Certificates of Deposits (CDs).

In early 2011 it was announced that OptionsXpress would be taken over by industry stalwart Charles Schwab. Schwab say they intend to operate OptionsXpress as a completely separate entity within the group, so don’t expect any imminent changes, although long term you have to think they will merge.

 

OptionsXpress Fees

Stock Trades Options Base Per Contract Min Deposit Broker Assisted Mutual Funds
$14.95 $14.95 $0.00 $0.00 $14.95 $9.95

Website and Sign-up

OptionsXpress has a clean and functional website, the text is easy to read and everything is easy to find. All too often I find brokers cramming their homepage with Terms and Conditions that are made deliberately difficult to read. Not so with OptionsXpress, they make everything clear and easy to understand, there’s no need for a magnifying glass here.

The account sign-up process was similarly quick and painless. It took me just a few minutes to complete the process, there’s a handy online signature facility, so you can easily create your own signature using the mouse. No forms to print and no identification to fax off, if only all brokers were this easy, a big thumbs up to OptionsXpress for this.

Trading Platform

OptionsXpress Tools

OptionsXpress have a fully featured professional style platform called Xtend. It offers over 20 different tools to help you find, analyze, execute and monitor trades; it’s easy for both beginners and intermediate traders to get a handle on.

But one of the best features of Xtend is the All-in-One trade ticket. This takes one click trading to the next level and enables you to action a trade from anywhere within the system simply by clicking on the relevant ticker or investment product.

It’s then just a case of entering the details on the screen, trade size; stops, margin etc and you’re done, you then close the pop-up and go back to where you started. It really is a joy to behold, I wish all trading systems worked this way.

Pros

  • Best in class customer service
  • Well-designed trading tools and cutting-edge trading technology
  • Free streaming quotes
  • $100 bonus for opening new account
  • No fee IRA accounts
  • Great research for fundamentals
  • Free virtual trading account
  • No money down to open cash account
  • Free account transfers
  • Free instructor lead online classes
  • Free broker-assisted trading
  • Full platform features are available to all traders

Cons

  • High trading costs for stocks and ETFs
  • No online trading community

Summary

OptionsXpress is certainly a quality broker with a quite exceptional trading platform. In fact I would go as far to say that it’s one of the best trading platforms available from any retail broker. One of the other things OptionsXpress excel at is online training. As a member you’ll get access to some excellent live seminars, training videos and structured courses to help you develop your trading skills.

If you’re a beginner this is an invaluable training resource and is worth many times what it would cost you to attend some other training seminar from a guru you’ve never heard of, especially since it’s all provided FREE of charge. It has to be said they are not the cheapest broker around, they make up for that to some extent with excellent customer service, but you have to think that some of their fees are a little on the expensive side, and they’re unlikely to get any better now that Charles Schwab have bought them out.

Would I recommend OptionsXpress? Yes I would, not only for their superb platform but also the level of training and customer service you’ll get. If you’re a significant investor and trade thousands of stocks at a time, then the steep fees are unlikely to make much of a difference to your bottom line. A beginner or trader with limited funds would be better off choosing TradeKing who have a more than adequate trading platform for your needs but offer significantly cheaper fees and commissions.

Sign-up for an Account with OptionsXpress Now!




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