Merrill Lynch Online (Edge) - Invest Independently or With Professional Advice and Guidance
Merrill Edge is a new Merrill Lynch online discount brokerage providing financial advice and investment banking services, which is now owned by BOA.
Merrill Lynch Online Brokerage Review
If you are looking for first-class personalized service for online stock trading then Merrill Lynch Online is the perfect option that would work in your favor. They are continuously working on improving themselves so that they can provide better services and features to their investors. One of their latest developments is a product known as Merrill Lynch Direct which is very useful for online stock trading. Currently Merrill Lynch comes under the organizational umbrella of the Bank of America and is reputed to be one of the best known brokerage firms online. Merrill Lynch has come a long way, and it has now grown into a big full service brokerage firm.
Most of the Merrill Lynch's clients or investors are wealthy because they can afford to pay for having an account with the firm. Truth be told, this is an expensive brokerage firm and you will have to pay very high commissions and fees if you choose Merrill Lynch but if you have a high net worth as a trader, then it won't be much of a problem. It provides comprehensive and superb services, so if time is of the essence for you, then Merrill Lynch would work for you. With Merrill Lynch you will experience the goodness of smooth services.
As discussed above, Merrill Lynch is quite an expensive broker and is meant for wealthy people who don't want to sweat over their investments or for traders who have high net worth. Hence, opening an account with Merrill Lynch is quite costly, you will need an initial investment of $2000 and you will have to maintain this balance at all times. You would also be charged a fee of $25 for each quarter as account maintenance fee.
Fees & Commissions
If you choose to trade in the market and limit trades of Merrill Lynch, then you will need to shell out $29.95 per trade. The broker assisted trades are very expensive and the fees can be anything from $50 right up to $150. The only saving grace is the option contract, which costs only $1.50, which is almost the same rate as the other online brokers in the market.
As an investor of Merrill Lynch Online, you will be provided with a huge selection of investment vehicles. You can take your pick from exchange-traded funds, mutual funds, options, stocks and fixed income investments like US treasury and municipal bonds, zero-coupon bonds, certificates of deposit, corporate bonds and convertible bonds. You can also have access to accounts like IRA, Roth IRA, Coverdell ESA, 529 Plans and Custodial Accounts.
Being a member, and that too a long time one, of SIPC, Merrill Lynch offers its investors secure and very easy to use services. There is a fraud system on the website that checks for any malpractice. The website is very easy to navigate and all the unnecessary things are done away with, which means that you'll only find the significant things on the website. So there is no clutter, only smooth navigation. Overall, the website's ease of use is rated very high.
The trading/investment tools of Merrill Lynch Online are very effective and the firm has much to offer. You can have access to basic tools such as level I and II quotes, alerts, graphs, charts, calculators and stock search with the click of a mouse button. There are also educational resources such as analyst research or reports, streaming news, newsletters, podcasts and tax information. You can also try out features such as phone trading and internet trading.
The amazing thing about Merrill Lynch is that it is all about customer service; customer satisfaction is topmost on its priority list. Merrill Lynch has over 600 offices nationwide that offers support and help to the traders. You can also contact the customer support by email or by making a phone call. Other attractive features include FAQs, virtual tours, tutorials, online documentation, trading help section, etc. There is no dearth of customer support features with Merrill Lynch.
If you are looking for superb brokerage services, then Merrill Lynch Online is just what you are looking for. The only major downside is that its commission is the highest among all other brokers. However, investors who can afford it should opt for it and experience the difference in the quality of services. All it requires is the money or the high net worth and then you could be one of the few lucky ones who have the chance to experience the rich services of Merrill Lynch.
Online equity and ETF trades for as little as $0. Learn More...
- Huge focus on retirement planning, variety of tools available.
- Great research available to customers.
- 30 free equity trades per month with $25,000 or more on your account.
- Nice website look and feel.
Disadvantages/Customers don't like
- Bond trading only via telephone line with live broker.
- Pricing tiers are a bit confusing.
Written by: Goran Dolenc
What Is Your Experience With Merrill Lynch Online?
How Others Rate Merrill Lynch Online?
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