Ally Invest vs TD Ameritrade

If you are looking for value in the brokerage services Ally Invest and TD Ameritrade are among the best! 

In our head to head comparison, we are going to strip down Ally Invest (formerly known as TradeKing) and TD Ameritrade. That way we can find the best online broker for your investing style.

Our team analyzed Ally Invest and TD Ameritrade from top to bottom. We based our recommendations on the general features that Ally Invest and TD Ameritrade have to offer.

Our comparison is going to give you a broad view of what they have to offer. In this review, we put a strong emphasis on fees and commissions, investment options, and trading platforms.

We will compare Ally Invest and TD Ameritrade to help you decide which online stock broker is best for your investment needs. 

Quick Glance

While both Ally Invest and TD Ameritrade are reputable well-known brokerage firms in the United States, there are a few distinct differences between TD Ameritrade and Ally Invest.

Ally Invest

Minimum Deposit: $0.00

Fees: 0.00 commissions on stocks, ETFs and options are $0.50 per contract

TD Ameritrade

Minimum Deposit: $0.00

Fees: $0.00 commissions on stocks, ETFs and options are $0.65 per contract

Now that we got a brief understanding, let’s dive in!

Ally Invest vs TD Ameritrade: Trading Fees and Commissions

Both brokers have basic investment options with little to no commissions. Neither Ally Invest or TD Ameritrade requires a minimum deposit. 

Trading Fees & Commissions  Ally Invest  TD Ameritrade 
Stocks

$0.00

$0.00

Options

$0.50

$0.65

ETFs

$0.00

$0.00

Mutual Funds 

$49.99

$9.95

A comparison of Ally Invest’s fees vs TD Ameritrade’s fees demonstrates that Ally Invest is the cheaper trading platform. If you are starting to invest as a beginner, Ally Invest may be the better stock broker for your needs.

Ally Invest vs TD Ameritrade: Investment Selection

Ally Invest and TD Ameritrade have both recently increased their investment section. Ally Invest was founded in 2005 (purchased TradeKing in 2016)  whereas TD Ameritrade was founded in 1971. TD Ameritrade has more experience in the field with more investment options to prove it. 

Investment  Ally Invest  TD Ameritrade 
Stocks

OTCBB/ Pink Sheets

Options

Futures

🚫

Forex

ETF

Mutual Funds 

8,000+

13,000+

Bonds

Advisor Service

International Trading 

🚫

Who Has a Wider Investment Selection?

Simply put, TD Ameritrade has a bit more to offer the average investor.

TD Ameritrade offers a wider variety of investments that Ally Investment. TD Ameritrade roughly 5,000 more mutual funds. 

Ally Invest vs TD Ameritrade: Trading Platforms 

Both Brokerages offer investors online web investing. They both have trading platforms that are user friendly, clean and well designed. 

Stay with us, we’re going to go over the pros and cons. Let’s see how they compare!

Ally Invest

Desktop 

The Ally Invest offers banking and investing all in one! Ally Invest offers InvestLIVE, a platform that works on desktop and mobile devices.

The homepage is easy to use and customizable with your favorite widget! There are numerous widgets including news, charts, quotes, portfolios, watch lists and other useful research tools. 

The Desktop interface is easy to operate and has good searching functions. You can type in both the company’s name or the asset ticker symbol. 

Ally Invest offers many order types, here is a list of a few:

  • Market
  • Limit
  • Stop limit
  • Stop loss
  • Trailing stop 
  • Market on close

Mobile 

Ally Invest offers two investing apps, Ally Mobile and Ally Forex. These apps offer live quotes, ACH transfers, data charts, watchlists and more.

Ally Forex focuses on foreign exchange and they have average daily turnovers of $3.2 trillion dollars! Ally Forex has a ton of data so you can always stay updated on the go.

TD Ameritrade

Desktop 

TD Ameritrade has been leading the way with their desktop platforms. They have two platforms, a traditional platform, and thinkorswim. The traditional desktop platform has all of your basic needs as an investor. Thinkorswim is a slightly more advanced platform.

The thinkorswim platform has a ton of positive feedback from users. This platform is made for the active more experienced investor who’s interested in purchasing stocks, options, futures, forex ETFs and more. There are countless tools, charts, and studies available for you.

All in all TD Ameritrade has great platforms with great search functions. They have easy to use automatic search suggestions. All you need to do is type in the company’s name or the asset ticker symbol.

TD Ameritrade offers the following order types:

  • Market
  • Limit
  • Stop limit
  • Stop loss
  • Trailing stop (percentage or amount)

Mobile 

TD Ameritrade offers two easy to use trading apps that are almost identical to the desktop platforms. The traditional platform allows you to do just about everything you can do on the desktop version, there isn’t much of a difference.

The second app is for thinkorswim users. The app provides the ability to trade, research and follow stocks on the go.

Ally Invest vs TD Ameritrade: Education & Research Platforms

Ally Invest and TD Ameritrade both offer great educational and research platforms. There are many videos, charts, and strategies available on these platforms. 

Let’s take a closer look!

Ally Invest

Education

At Ally Invest, they make it easy for their clients to learn. There are tutorial videos, webinars, and quality educational articles available.

The educational content that they provide ie beginner friendly and super helpful. The articles are in the ‘Do it right’ section and the tutorials are located in the ’How to’ section. 

Research

Ally Invest has a bunch of tools for stocks and options traders. If you’re an ETF or mutual fund trader no worries, for the most part, they’re treated the same as stocks, just make sure you know you’re getting into.

TD Ameritrade

Education

TD Ameritrade has great educational material! For the most part, they focus on webcasts and educational articles. 

The paperMoney demo account is a great place to get information worth your time. The paperMoney account is operated by thinkorswim and they offer a wide array of charts and professional tools. The best part is that it’s free!

Research

We tested TD Ameritrade and found great research tools. On thinkorswim they have easy to use charting tools and trading investment ideas for stocks, ETFs, mutual funds and fixed incomes.

Do they Have Robo-Advisors?

YES!

Both Ally Invest and TD Ameritrade provide optional Robo-advisory. Because this is optional, there are requirements and fees that go along.

Ally Invest

If you want to automate your investing portfolio, Ally Invest can help out. They off an AI managed portfolio for an annual fee of 0.30% of total assets in your portfolio. There is also a minimum deposit of $500. 

Aside from your personal investing account, Roth IRA, traditional IRA joint taxable accounts, 529 plans and more are supported. Ally Invest does not offer automatic rebalancing or tax-loss harvesting.

TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade also has automated investing available. They require a higher investment minimum than Ally Invest, $5,000. Similar to Ally Invest, TD Ameritrade has a management fee of 0.30% annually.

They offer tax-loss harvesting, automatic rebalancing, and other unique services. 

Ally Invest vs TD Ameritrade: Customer Support

Customer support is a make or break when choosing an online broker. For the most part, both Ally Invest and TD Ameritrade have available and active customer support.

Ally Invest

Ally Invest has a live chat that works around the clock (24/7). There are three ways to contact Ally invest:

  1. Live chat
  2. Phone
  3. Email

Contacting Ally Invest by phone provided the most relevant answers in the shortest time.

You can ask just about any question. If you need to retrieve account information or get trade assistance, they’re there to help. Just make sure that you log into your account or give proper account information.

TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade also has a support team that is available 24/7. They have three channels of customer support:

  1. Telephone
  2. Live chat
  3. Via email

To our knowledge, customer support speaks in English, Spanish and Chinese.

TD Ameritrade provides quick relevant answers throughout their routes of contact. The live chat is a great way to get answers on the spot. 

Margin Rates

If you trade on margin, then margin rates will affect your portfolio’s returns. As an investor, it is important to find a company with reasonable interest rates.

Amount TD Ameritrade Ally Invest
Below $24,999

10.00%

9.50%

$25,000 – $49,999

9.75%

9.25%

$50,000 –  $99,999

8.75%

8.50%

$100,000 – $249,999

8.50%

7.25%

$250,000 – $499,999

8.25%

6.25%

$500,000 – $999,999

N/A

5.75%

Above $1,000,000

N/A

5.00%

Between TD Ameritrade and Ally Invest, Ally Invest offers investors the lowest margin rates on every tier.

Security 

Ally Invest and TD Ameritrade have strong levels of security. Both brokers take security very seriously and back up their clients.

Ally Invest accounts are FDIC- insured. They are also a member of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC), meaning that clients are protected up to $500,000.

Just like Ally Invest, TD Ameritrade is a member of the SIPC and their accounts are ensured with the FDIC

Security is very important when it comes to online brokers. As some of the largest US brokers in the market, Ally Invest and TD Ameritrade are safe platforms to invest. 

Bottom Line

Investors looking to compare Ally Invest vs TD Ameritrade will find that these two online discount brokers appeal to different types of investors. 

Ally Invest charges some of the lowest fees and commissions in the industry, while TD Ameritrade is a higher cost trading platform. However, the reason for this is that TD Ameritrade’s platforms are extremely robust and powerful, and the company also offers its clients access to tons of investment research. In a sense, one could argue that TD Ameritrade offers more value.

Both online discount brokers provide solid investment platforms but you can’t deny that Ally Invest has a cheaper pricing structure. They may be better for novice investors who are starting to invest with little money. They also have a newer platform (built upon TradeKing’s platform).

TD Ameritrade’s cost structure can be justified for investors who want high-level stock and options trading. They offer top of the line tools, free research reports, and extensive educational webinars. 

Now that you found the right broker, get investing!