TD Ameritrade: Most Diverse Offering of Free ETF Trades

TD Ameritrade has expanded its commission-free ETF trading program after almost tripling the number of ETFs eligible and now offers the largest selection of free ETF trades on any brokerage platform.

Effective October 17, TD Ameritrade will allow clients to trade 296 ETFs commission-free from its previous 100 lineup. Through the updated commission-free ETF program, registered investment advisors and individual investor clients will have access to ETFs from eight leading providers, including AGFiQ QuantShares, First Trust Portfolios, iShares ETFs, J.P. Morgan Asset Management, PowerShares by Invesco, ProShares, State Street Global Advisors and WisdomTree.

AGFiQ Asset Management, First Trust Portfolios LP, J.P. Morgan Asset Management and ProShare Advisors LLC will be new additions to the TD Ameritrade commission-free program. ETFs from State Street Global Advisors, WisdomTree Investments Inc. and PowerShares will be replaced with other ETFs from those firms. Moreover, some of the iShares ETFs from BlackRock currently offered on a commission-free basis will remain while others will be replaced.

However, the brokerage firm has dropped Vanguard ETFs from its list of commission-free options. Investors, though, will still be able to trade Vanguard products on TD’s brokerage platform but they will come with trading fees.

The move is seen as a way for the discount brokerage to better compete with rivals like Charles Schwab & Co, which also offers a broad range of commission-free ETFs on its Schwab ETF OneSource program.

“Clients asked us for greater choice and a wider variety of high-quality, commission-free ETFs. We’re delivering in a big way: we’ve assembled the largest list of commission-free ETFs in the business, while still retaining our open-architecture approach, with no proprietary ETFs,” Jim Dario, managing director of product management for TD Ameritrade Institutional, said in a note. “The new platform will feature some of the biggest names in the ETF industry, with ETFs selected to cover a range of investment strategies and enable investors and advisors to create tailored, diversified portfolios.”