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335 e*Trade Consumer Reviews and Complaints

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: June 10, 2018

I have had several brokerage accounts over the years. e*Trade has grown to be the worst. I have had multiple problems with them over the years. I have recently had them sell contracts I owned, an hour before the close of markets, without my permission. They said because they would be required to fill the contract, which is not true when you own the contract, only when you sell it. Was credited $100, a fraction of what I could have sold it for prior to the close. Filed complaint with SEC.

e*Trade is also constantly changing the margins on specific stocks to promote trading. They will use the excuse they feel you are too concentrated in a certain area. That is at their discretion, or more accurately the discretion of the low wage workers they hire to evaluate your account. If you use their 25% margin option they offer, they will raise it as soon as you do. I rarely go below 50% on my margin when I use it, but this does not stop their margin department from raising the margin requirements between 35%-55% on specific stocks due to increased concentration in the account. Even if raising the margin will have no effect on your concentration. Math is clearly foreign to them.

Then there is their timing and erratic policy changes. They recently raised the margin on my BAC stock 21 minutes after market closed on one day, only to raise it back the next day 3 minutes after the market opened. No trading took place in my account during this period. Nothing changed in my account to warrant such erratic policy changes. Like what could I have done anyway between market closed one day and market open the next day, even if I wanted to.

It is just the most inept company I have ever dealt with. Trying to explain things to them over the phone is like talking to a child. Their answers are scripted and it is clear they have little to no trading experience when you talk to them on the phone. I often have to prompt them to use google so they understand trading terminology. e*Trade makes thousands on my accounts each year, and I will be moving my accounts to a new broker. I would not recommend e*Trade to my worst enemy. Worst brokerage service I have had to deal with. They will lose my business as a result.

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2 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: May 17, 2018

Untrustworthy, unreliable and unpredictable investment and banking platform. Up until this week I had had an e*Trade account for around ten years and was perfectly happy using it. As such, my e*Trade account had become central to my investment, savings, and retirement interests. That all changed when I tried to add an external account into which I could transfer funds.

Seven days ago e*Trade suspended, and then closed, my account on the pretext of suspicious activity (i.e attempting to add the external account). It was claimed by e*Trade that they had information that the external account was associated with fraud; and abruptly closed my e*Trade account. It is not clear to me how they came to that conclusion, as the external account is with one of the largest banks in the US, and provided no explanation or evidence of wrong-doing on my part (as there was none) or of the external bank.

Prior to the account being suspended I had initiated a transfer of funds (a non-trivial amount) into my e*Trade account. When the account was closed I attempted to recall the funds, but was unsuccessful. I am now advised by the sending bank that the funds were transferred successfully to my (now closed) e*Trade account; and they have provided a federal trace number as evidence. e*Trade however maintain that since the account is closed they have not, and are not able to, receive the funds; which is in contradiction to evidence provided by the trace.

To try and sort out the mess created by the abrupt closure of the account I've called e*Trade every day for the past week, sometimes more than once a day - each time having to run the call center gauntlet of security questions and interrogation by the new person I speak to - to try and resolve the multitude of difficulties the account closure has created. This has consumed multiple hours of aggravation; having to appraise each new customer support individual of the issues at hand, and being placed on hold or transferred to individuals unable to resolve these issues as they have arisen.

With regard to the missing funds, it is now one week since I initiated that associated transfer yet there is still no acceptance on e*Trade's part that they have received the funds, where they have gone, or when they will be returned. I am exasperated with the lack of progress and don't know what else to do. The best e*Trade can advise, as we head into the second week of this debacle, is to call back in 24-48 hours.

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6 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: April 27, 2018

My account has been locked for several weeks. I have contacted e*Trade more than 6 times in the last few weeks with no action taken yet. I receive the same response every time, "We will take care of it". I furnished all the documents they requested 3 weeks ago. I am now at risk of losing thousands of dollars in restricted stock units within the next 96 hours.

8 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: April 4, 2018

I've had an e*Trade account for over 21 years. In February e*Trade forced me to either sign that I read and understood 6 exchange agreements or I would lose access to my account. I read the agreements but can't honestly say I understood them so I chose not to sign them. I was promptly locked out of my account. e*Trade staff that I talked to didn't understand exactly what the agreements were about either. It turned out the agreements pertained to use of real time quotes. I found that out by talking to someone in TD Ameritrade, because I couldn't get an answer from e*Trade staff. e*Trade staff appears to be woefully undertrained. I don't use real time quotes but e*Trade did not offer the opportunity to opt out.

There were only two choices: sign the agreements or have my account held hostage. e*Trade held my account hostage for about a week and then somebody in e*Trade used their brain and allowed me to opt out of real time quotes, because e*Trade apparently got numerous complaints about their behavior. I was locked out of my account during an extremely volatile time in the market but could not access my account to protect my assets. A corporate manager offered me $100 for my inconvenience and losses. I told him that was an insult because I lost several thousand dollars during the time I was locked out of my account. I filed a complaint with the SEC. I'm still waiting to hear what the SEC is going to do. My guess is nothing. The e*Trade compliance analyst wrote up a brief analysis of the issue and said e*Trade would do nothing to make me whole. The analyst lied about things I said.

I complained to the CEO of e*Trade. Now e*Trade has told me I have to move my account. I was planning to move my account anyhow but thought what kind of firm screws over a 21 year customer and then asks them to leave? I suggest to anyone thinking about opening an account at e*Trade to think twice. There are far better brokerage firms to have your account than e*Trade. e*Trade actually states the following: "e*Trade Securities reserves the right to block my access to the Service without notice, for any reason or for no reason." Think about that when you ponder opening an account with e*Trade, because e*Trade can and will block access to your account. I know that from experience.

Updated on 04/18/2018: After writing about my problems with e*Trade holding my account hostage (4/4/18) I thought of a couple other negative aspects to e*Trade when compared to some other brokerage firms:

1. Some companies offer a DRIP program where an investor owning shares of equities in the company can reinvest the distributions at a discount to market price. When the investor purchases and holds shares of those equities through a brokerage firm the investor can still participate in the DRIP program, but only if the brokerage firm participates on the investor’s behalf. I hold an equity from a company with a DRIP plan discount and I hold that equity in two brokerage firms, Fidelity and e*Trade.

Fidelity automatically participates in the company’s DRIP plan and my shares are automatically reinvested at the discount price (currently a discount of 2.5%). e*Trade does NOT participate in the company’s DRIP plan and distributions are reinvested at market price. While this doesn’t add up to a lot of money, a 2.5% discount can amount to a fair chunk of change if you have a lot of shares or if you hold that equity for a long time. The point is some brokerage firms watch out for their clients and try to maximize their client’s earnings while other brokerage firms twiddle their thumbs and do little to help their clients. Every dollar counts, so why go to a brokerage firm that isn’t willing to work for you?

2. I transferred my account from e*Trade to Ameritrade. It’s a decent sized account. Ameritrade promptly assigned a financial consultant to my account. I also have a financial consultant with my Fidelity account. e*Trade never assigned anyone to my account in the 21 years I had my account with them. It was strictly a bare-bones effort by e*Trade. It was like they couldn’t be bothered with trying to help a client. But considering their overall lack of knowledge (my opinion) it might well be better that they don’t try to help.

The overall lack of assistance by e*Trade didn’t bother me because I mostly do my own thing. HOWEVER, when some problem arises (as it did at e*Trade) it’s nice to have a name you can call and get some help fixing the problem. I did not have that with e*Trade. When e*Trade locked me out of my account I had no one I could contact except customer service and most of e*Trade’s customer service people are poorly trained. Sometimes they don’t even respond to a secure message, sometimes they are late in responding, sometimes they totally miss the point. After my experience with e*Trade I am very glad the other two firms have a financial consultant assigned to my account. Those two firms show some class that e*Trade simply doesn’t have, based on my recent experience.

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11 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: March 14, 2018

Great, proactive customer support, both at corporate and branch levels. More customization options would be helpful, particularly on data presentation and download.

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Verified Reviewer
Original review: March 12, 2018

e*Trade is the worst brokerage all around. Frequent platform/quotes outages, options platform errors and limitations – all that with some of the highest commissions in the industry. After e*Trade took over OptionsHouse accounts I have transferred out two of my accounts and in the process of transferring out my last account to another brokerage. Last week I lost few hundreds because e*Trade had quotes outage. Not the first time, and e*Trade refused to make it up to me. Did not even credited some commission-free trades. e*Trade’s IT department is incompetent and careless. After taking over OptionsHouse in 2017, e*Trade removed many features from what used to be a very nice platform and managed to break some functionality.

e*Trade took months to ‘copy’ the functionality to another platform just to create a piece of garbage with an awful not user friendly platform. I spent a lifetime designing financial systems and made many suggestions on platform improvements none of which got implemented. e*Trade messed up my taxable transactions by mistakenly changing cost basis to zero. After I brought this up – the Cost Basis department intervened and manually added another transaction that erroneously increased the cost basis by $71,000. From what I read from in other customer complaints – many had a similar experience. Today is March, 11 but e*Trade still did not deliver all 1099 forms for 2017. Stay away from e*Trade - other brokerages - Fidelity, Ameritrade, TastyWorks have competent employees and treat customers better than e*Trade.

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7 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: March 10, 2018

I have been fighting with e*Trade for years to get my Cisco certificate shares. I closed my account long ago and asked for my Cisco shares to be sent to me. When they never arrived I called e*Trade who told me I had to call another company that handles the mailing of trades. They stated they had not received anything from e*Trade for me to be mailed, they stated I would need to call e*Trade back to discuss the problem. I suppose you can see where this is going as this went on for months, including myself trying to get the FTC involved to mediate the problem. Nothing EVER happened. Cisco acknowledges my shares but to have them replaced I must put a stop on them, purchase a surety bond and sign affidavits they lost, all at my cost. Not once did anyone from e*Trade try to help in any way. Very frustrating company to deal with, I would recommend you find someone better to deal with.

8 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: March 8, 2018

This place is not a good place to put your money. I kinda done more in depth research after I opened both accounts banking and brokerage. You really don't see much good reviews of this place but anyway I opened these accounts and maybe almost 2 months later closed with no notice. I logged in to my account via mobile and could not see my brokerage acct so I called and was told my acct was closed. "Why?" I asked then. The rep says she didn't have that info will send a letter blah blah. "Ok. How do I get my money." The rep tells me that they will send it back automatically to the account I made a deposit with.

I give it a day. Call back and now it takes up to 2 weeks to receive it that way so I had to write a letter and upload it with signature and instructions on how I would like to receive my money. This is **. I shouldn't have to jump through hoops to get my money back. This place is garbage. I'm glad I still have FIDELITY. Way better than e trash. Customer service is just as garbage as this company.

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8 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: March 3, 2018

This is an economical way to trade stocks. I have had excellent support when I have called staff for assistance. I have used this company for years and have no plans to change brokers.

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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Feb. 22, 2018

Wish I had found this site before transferring my accounts to e*Trade! Customer Service is terrible. One Customer service rep tells you one thing, then the next tells you something different. Shortly after opening three IRA accounts I get an urgent email alert that said they tried to contact me by phone but couldn't. I was home and my phone did not ring. OK, so I call them and after a short while on hold while they "research" the problem, they come back and say It's no problem, and don't know why I got the email. This happened three times within several days with the same result. Finally got a rep that knew what she was doing and she resolved the problem.

Before I transferred my accounts to e*Trade, I called a customer service rep with several questions. One being if I could set up automatic quarterly distributions to a nonprofit charity - my church. The rep spent several minutes researching and I think checking with her supervisor. She came back on the line and said no problem, but that I would have to include a separate letter in addition to two forms. After the accounts were set up and activated, I completed and uploaded two forms plus a separate letter they said was required.

Two weeks later and no distribution, I again contacted customer service: "Oh, we (the back office) can't do automatic distributions to a charity, you have to resubmit the paperwork each time". I asked why they hadn't notified me of that. The reply "you should receive a message in the next day or two!" Yeah, Sure! BTW, one of the forms I submitted has boxes to check that indicate it is for automatic and quarterly distributions. There is no mention on the form that it is not allowed for charities or that it is only allowed for transfers to another account I might have at e*Trade.

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12 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Feb. 15, 2018

At first I thought these terrible reviews were lopsided given e*Trade's position as a major US online brokerage. Upon experiencing first hand, I can whole-heartedly agree that these reviews are absolutely accurate. Day 1: Account is opened, funds wired. Brokerage account ready to trade. Place a pre-market short trade that gets filled at 8:42am. Everything seemingly working great - I switched brokerages for execution like this. Then at 9:30am market opens soft, I look to get out of the trade at a slight loss and lo and behold, my account is MISSING on the site. Log in works, but no accounts shown, no balances and everything is blank. WHERE IS MY MONEY?

Frantically I call customer service - e*Trade claims they cannot verify my info and my account in "locked" for my safety. Need to send them a copy of social security to unlock. I tell them you allowed me to trade earlier but now I can't get out. Dangerous situation - over the course of a 45 min call they continue to refuse to unlock it. Tell them I'm a repeat customer so they look into it and will call me back.

11am no response and I call them back. A new rep keeps putting me on hold, I'm down about $2k now still needing to get out of the position. Comes back, "this is our process we can't do anything about it". 3pm and I'm on the phone again. Now down $5k. New rep offers me to get on the line with one of their traders and try to "bust" the trade (ie: reverse it somehow). I ask them why I wasn't offered this earlier. Trader doesn't want to do it since he would be losing money... "sorry can't be done". Well then why did you offer it? 6pm and I get home and finally able to upload my SS card via the mobile app. But now down $6k and very frustrated with the whole experience.

Day 2: Market opens up +400pts and I can get out at a minor loss, at least better than the day before. MY ACCOUNT IS STILL NOT ACTIVE. Call them and get the response "we see your uploaded SS image, but operations will take 2-3 days to get this sorted out". I tell them I need to get out of this trade! They said I might be able to place it over the phone but I will have tax implications where my money could get trapped for 1+ years because of the SSN issue. WHAT? I tell them to expedite my account verification.

12pm. Get a call saying my account is finally active. Try to log in online and via app and STILL NO ACCOUNT. 1pm. Get another call saying my account is active and I am so irate at this point. Turns out e*Trade randomly changes my login into something obscure without ever informing me and need to get that fixed.

3pm. Finally my account is there, now down $10k. I call in demanding some recourse, close my trade at a loss since I don't want to take weekend risk and market feels weak. They said they'll launch an inquiry and see if they can get investment credit back to my account. I say okay. Day 4 (following Tuesday): Different departments are still reviewing the inquiry when I call in. I lay it out very clear. I'm a repeat customer. If there was an error in SSN why did the acct clear for the first trade? I just wanted to cover/close my position and you offered no help. They say they need more time to review - but rep says he understands.

Day 6: Get a call final decision is "we did everything correctly and are unable to assist you in your situation". Rep sounds very sorry on the phone but probably knew this was going to be the answer from the beginning. Overall - beyond losing $10k right off the bat, e*Trade customer service is absolutely horrendous. Robotic answers, constant "let me place you on hold". This ordeal was at least 5 hrs of phone time with 5 different reps. BEWARE. This is a terrible brokerage that can lock your account at a whim leaving you exposed to market conditions. I would avoid them at all costs.

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15 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 25, 2018

Finally decided to utilize my margin account. Transferred cash and bought. Few days later received a margin call. A small fluctuation and you get a margin call and within hours they sell without giving you a chance to resolve. So, this week there was an intra-day fluctuation in my positions which we all know happens and is normal, but E-Trade went ahead and sold my shares to settle the margin call. I contacted them asking why they sold my shares so fast based on intra-day fluctuation, and without allowing me to resolve.

Upon insisting for an explanation I was transferred to another more aggressive rep who matter-of-factly informed me I wasn't a big enough investor to them. He said if I had a few millions with them, they wouldn't have sold... They use margin as a trap to sell your shares. They benefit massively because they wait for intra-day fluctuation to sell your position for cheap. While they did email before they sold the shares, the email is generic and with a general subject line.

Instead of titling it something along the lines of "Margin Call" it simply says customer service, a boring cut and paste message with no details in the body but you miss it and they sell your shares. Overall I'm frustrated, lost a lot of money due to E-Trade's intra-day margin call trap. Hopefully someone will avoid the mistake I made with E-Trade. For peace of mind and unless you're a professional trader watching your positions all day, strictly trade cash. E-Trade margin trap is simply not worth it.

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10 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Jan. 23, 2018

When I started years ago their rates were competitive -- I never had any problems with the limited service I needed. My last renewal of a CD was for 0.1% -- outrageous! When I went to close the account I was told that I needed to download forms online and then mail them in; impossible to do it online. Then they took about 3 weeks to process the withdrawal. When I went online to check, since my account was closed I was denied all but limited access to my account and even that was impossible to get. I called and their automated phone system kept bouncing me (un-asked) to different options but, to give them credit, when I finally got a person they were helpful and efficient. I'm glad I closed my accounts.

9 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Nov. 14, 2017

e*Trade's customer service area is horrific. They never give the the same answer, they take several days to complete a simple withdrawal, and never admit their mistakes. I am so disappointed in how they handle transactions, I would never recommend them to anyone, not even small accounts.

22 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 28, 2017

Have been doing business with this firm for many years. Recently, their service has been horrible. They tell you one thing and that happens to be incorrect. It is almost impossible to log in to their website. Telephone calls result in transfers to areas that cannot assist you. Can no longer do business with these people. Very poor service and technology.

24 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Oct. 7, 2017

Maybe it's just that I am new to investing in stocks directly, but when I accidentally tried to transfer an amount greater than what was available for withdrawal in my account, the difference was automatically borrowed on a margin with no attempt to obtain confirmation that this was the action I intended. To me it seems almost predatory that one would not be notified in any way that they are withdrawing more money than what is "available for withdrawal" (and truly, with that phrasing, it seems funny that one should even be capable of doing so).

I did not notice the negative cash balance until I went to go and withdraw more money, so a not insignificant amount of interest had been accumulated. I will learn from this mistake, but I will never be using e*Trade again. Upon contacting e*Trade customer service about whether there was any sort of confirmation or at least notification in place to make customers aware when they are literally borrowing money, I was informed that no, there was no such measure in place, but that they would note my feedback. I'm sure they will seeing as this "flaw" in their system got them a nice chunk of money in interest from me.

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26 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Sept. 6, 2017

I set up a custodial account for my niece nearly 18 years ago, and recently received a letter from the IRS stating I owe back taxes for dividends the account received nearly 2 years ago. When I called E-Trade asking why this dividend was reported under my tax ID, and not my niece's, I was told that I, as custodian, am the responsible party for any taxes. This goes against all of the research I have done, and, actually would negate the entire reason for the account if it were true. My complaint about E-Trade is not only that their customer service reps know nothing; I also am upset that this dividend was reported under my tax ID and not my niece's.

21 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: Aug. 26, 2017

One time I had a very large account with them. I engaged a money manager at another brokerage and tried to transfer part of the account to the other brokerage. It took 10 months, because e*trade kept falsely saying there were margin clerking problems. Luckily the money manager was patient and didn't just boot me. Another time I had a dispute of around $60000 with them. Their legal position was ridiculous, that I had to keep re-filing my account documents due to imperfections that were mostly their fault and that anyone else would ignore. The problem was that they would state their legally unsupportable nonsense on the phone but refused to put it in writing on their "Secure Message" messaging system.

Needless to say. They also refused to use e-mail also. They kept promising to give me a written reply, but never did. I recounted this story to other knowledgeable people who know me. Some said I might be a victim of race discrimination, and others said it was just likely that e*trade just doesn't like my personality and decided to treat me sadistically instead of flat out canceling my accounts.

Suggestion: Make recordings of your contentious telephone calls with them, and perhaps transcribe the calls as well. Then if they've promised to put it in writing you'll already have it in writing, to one way of thinking at least. They haven't reduced their commissions the way other brokerages have. Also they have an annoying $38 "reorganization fee" that makes some investments major long term money traps for the unwary.

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30 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: Aug. 25, 2017

My Account was restricted for some mysterious reason and now I have been waiting for a week for e-trade to unlock my account. They keep promising to call me back to unlock it (the department that does this does not accept inbound calls!) But I am still waiting. I now have no access to my money and each person I speak to doesn't really sound like they care to help. No managers available just no, thats all I hear - pathetic!

33 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: July 10, 2017

E*TRADE keeps changing fee structure on its mutual funds and ETFs. I had DCA into few funds for couple of years. These are small amounts I deposit into mutual funds. In my recent account review I noticed that my account value was falling instead of great stock market returns. I came to know that for past 6+ months E*TRADE was charging me $19.99 for each auto deposit of $250 into 3 funds. Apparently E*TRADE changed these funds from NTF to fees based without proper notifications. That's whopping $350 fees they charged me without my knowledge.

I never received any notification about fee structure change for my holdings. Despite several requests to refund fees, E*TRADE representatives behaved rudely and shoo'd me away. I am really upset and feel cheated with E*TRADE! Buyers beware of con artists at E*TRADE who want to make money using unfair tactics, making it customer’s fault! Do they expect small investors to watch for sudden fee structure changes for individual holdings!!!

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30 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: June 25, 2017

I have been trying for 16 years to get the money out of a custodial account originally established in my name for college savings. Clearly, we weren't able to use it for college. Apparently it isn't enough mine to liquidate or change the investments, despite being well over 18, but it IS enough mine to charge me taxes and fees. It isn't enough my parents for eTrade to allow them access either, because I am over 18 (in fact the account is well over 18 years old, so there should be no question of that).

The funds are worth less than a quarter of what they were initially, however, as funds change they just combine lots and reinvest things, losing the cost basis each time and sending tax forms as if all the shares were purchased at $0, often as short term gains. However, the records they make available are so incomplete that I cannot begin to match the current shares with the original purchases, and fixing the cost basis has become a costly and time consuming venture... and then when it is corrected, they will change the lots and reset it to $0 again.

Seriously, this investment has cost me more in fees, taxes, and trying to get professional help to get the account closed than the investment was ever worth. It has been a two decade mistake with the most miserable financial services company I've interacted with. I just wish the entire account would vanish - it isn't enough money to miss anymore, despite it being an initial attempt at college savings - and it continually saps my time and money to try to deal with them. Fidelity wasn't even able to help me get my money from eTrade, and otherwise their service has been fantastic in helping me consolidate and manage funds.

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33 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: June 17, 2017

I lost my wife in 2000 and she had an e*Trade account that I automatically inherited. Life gets in the way and quite frankly I forgot about it until I recently came across some paperwork. OK that was my fault. I tried to log in using the information I found without success so contacted e*Trade. Answer back was, "We closed that account (why?) and since we don't keep record more than 7 years, it's done." Tough luck. I've had the same telephone number for years but no one called or emailed. I agree that Customer Service is a joke and virtually useless. Got a voice mail saying "yep, Account closed, money gone - no further action is required on your behalf!" Pressed them for reasons they closed the account in writing and I eventually got a BS letter. That has been passed on to legal representation. $7,000 - 10,000 just vaporized without trace. I call this Corporate Theft.

47 people found this review helpful
Verified Buyer
Original review: June 6, 2017

Etrade shut down my Etrade account without explanation. I had a grey sheet penny stock and Etrade said "Either transfer your shares or we will sell your shares automatically." Etrade will not divulge why they will not service my account. I cannot sell my shares as on the grey sheets. It is not possible. Etrade did find the shares when they sold them for me. Etrade also will not reimburse me for the cost of the trade(s) to acquire the shares.

Something is going on illegal here imo since Etrade will not divulge the reason why they shut down my account. They also found shares I could buy out of thin air even though there was a seller wanting me to buy their shares (which did not happen). The company (MIKP) is not selling shares so where is Etrade getting these shares. The Etrade traders claimed they did a workaround to get me the shares. Worst experience of any brokerage out there.

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32 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: May 15, 2017

I have been a customer with e*Trade for 12 years. Sunday, I logged into my account and discovered that all 3 of my accounts had been frozen. E*Trade did not proactively notify me by email or phone. I am lucky that I discovered the fact two days after they froze it. I got grilled to the nth degree by their rep and manager--very private and intrusive questions way beyond the questions they have asked in the past when needing to verify my identity (beyond the 8 question list). These were questions to uncover a crime (but no crime had been committed). Although the reps were evasive, I could tell that some wire transfers I made to buy and sell property were being viewed as "suspicious activity" and that they were getting ready to submit a SAR (or perhaps had already done so).

No one I spoke to could tell me what was going on. In fact, I asked the manager on duty what department was reviewing my information and who could I talk with to resolve the matter and re-activate my account. He claimed arrogantly that "he" was the top level on duty for the day, and there was nothing else I could do. Well, I called back and got a very nice rep, and he immediately gave me the information for the activation department. Why couldn't the manager have provided me that info?

I did call the activation team this morning, but still no one can tell me when my answers and documentation will be reviewed and when my account will be re-activated. I am traveling all day tomorrow and have no access to my funds. And I am also a cancer patient who has to pay for appointments out-of-pocket. I feel completely powerless and resent the way I was treated. I am very concerned about getting access to my account back. I have a significant amount of deposits with them. I do not recommend banking with e*Trade, but I also wonder if all banks are like this now due to the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA). BEWARE!

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36 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: May 5, 2017

Rolled my 401K into E-trade, a relatively large amount. Shortly after applied for a loan. Was told it would take 3-5 business days... Three Weeks later... After overnighting additional paperwork on a weekend, (thus not slowing the process, they had it by Monday morning) and instantly wiring funds to make up for a trading shortfall of $90, in order to make certain that the full loan amount was available, and being told about 10 times that it would take 3-5 business days, I am now told loan paperwork is completed, and all is good on the money side... It will take 3-5 business days to receive the funds from the loan...

This company is a Time fabric oddity. Every step of every process takes 3-5 business days and after you've waited and worked for 15-20 business days, guess what? It will take 3-5 business days longer for whatever step is next. I don't think they could handle a ham sandwich if they were spotted the bread and the cheese. Let alone hundreds of thousands of dollars in personal investments. Tried to speak to a supervisor, was told there was only one available. They asked if he could call back, I said, "let me guess it will take 3-5 business days!" Steer clear.

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30 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: May 5, 2017

Out of courtesy, I informed my account manager I was transferring 2000 to another company. After a few weeks, I found out they were lying to me. Even though they had the same SS number on the application and the only thing different was the lack of a middle initial, E*TRADE wanted me to submit a new application for transfer with a Notary signature. I called my rep and he assured me they were sending the check that day.

Long story short, they NEVER sent the money and lied to the rep and me. The span of time was March 15th until May 2nd when they finally sent a check and debited my account. SIX PLUS WEEKS! This is a crime! My rep has been wonderful and now will have to suffer as the lying and deceitful practices has forced me to move my account and that of my spouse. I will not put up with this and suggest you don't either!!!

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22 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer
Original review: April 25, 2017

I contacted E*trade on 11/23/16 to inquire about my account. Something seemed off and I asked the customer service rep if a recent company merger had been reflected correctly with the corresponding shares in my account. The rep told me he had found a discrepancy and would need to do a manual update. On 12/2/16, I spoke to the rep again and he told me I would see the correction in my account after a couple of days. On 12/7/16, I assumed the E*Trade rep was done working on my account. On this day I saw a $3,000 GAIN in my portfolio. I thought I hit the jackpot! After so many months of watching my shares lose money with this company, I thought I finally got a break and finally made a profit. After watching the stock go up and down by a few dollars for over an hour, once it started dipping under $3,000 I decided to sell all my shares belonging to this particular company.

Later on that evening, I received an E*Trade secure message and voicemail message (at 7:00pm) from the E*Trade rep stating that he apologized for the delay in the updates for the cost basis and he noticed when he went in to re-add the cost basis I had sold it off. He mentioned that I may have noticed that the cost-basis was set to 0.00. I did not notice the cost-basis was set to 0.00 - What I DID notice was over a $3,000 GAIN for my shares. I acted on this MISLEADING and INCORRECT DATA in my account. What the $3,000 dollars actually represented was the TOTAL AMOUNT for my shares for this one certain company - NOT AGAIN. When I sold my shares, instead of making a $2,980.18 profit, I LOST $1,420.26!!! I had originally paid $4,400.44 for these shares.

Please note, if I knew the E*Trade rep would be working in my account that day - I would not have sold my shares for such a huge loss. I can't afford to lose that much money. My portfolio did not reflect the correct loss/gain total for these particular shares on that day because of this person's negligent actions and I acted on the erroneous data.

E*Trade refuses to reimburse me for the $1,420.26 loss I incurred because of their careless manual update. They weren't considerate enough to inform me that they were in my account after the timeframe they had specified. They should have told me when they were going to be in my account and for how long - and also to let me know when it would be ok to go back into my account. I spoke to the E*Trade rep's supervisor, and he admitted that everything happened exactly as I had described and offered me $300.00, but he said that's all he could give me. I told him this was unacceptable because this whole mishap was not my fault - it was E*Trade's fault and they needed to make it right and reimburse me for the entire amount.

The stocks I sold are actually worth $308 per share now (16 shares are worth $4,928). The stock also hit $313 per share not too long ago. So truth be told, I actually lost $1,948 as of today and I'm just asking E*Trade to reimburse me $1,420.26. I would be grateful to just break even. I totally own up to and accept my stock market mistakes/losses - And E*Trade should own up to theirs and fix the mistakes they make on their client's accounts. Why should I pay for their mistake and negligence?! My account history shows that I'll let my stock shares pretty much die before ever considering selling them off as losses. I always have hope that they'll come back to life eventually. I also have high hopes that E*Trade will do the right thing and reimburse me the money they cost me on December 7, 2016.

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20 people found this review helpful
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Verified Reviewer
Original review: April 16, 2017

Had very bad experience with their customer service. They make system complicated for us simple people to understand. I do not do taxes or stocks for a living. I am an engineer and would like to stay that way. They put my residency status as foreign national when I have been working here for seven years. When I asked them about it and kindly requested to amend it, they completely disowned the problem. Redirected it to be my problem and refused to help me at any cost. Unfortunately, I have to deal with this problem as-is. Morgan Stanley would never do this.

13 people found this review helpful
Verified Reviewer Verified Buyer
Original review: Feb. 24, 2017

I have traded for a few years now with Etrade. I understand there are risks involved in the market. As a beginner I was led to believe that you can invest your money and hope to see some sort of gains. After these few years I have learned how manipulating Etrade's platform is. The sad part is they call you a customer elite when you have met a certain amount of trades but when you lose money or need any assistance you're not so elite anymore. Don't be surprised that it is this brokerage firm involved in taking parts of your funds. Every issue I have ever had has never been properly resolved.

I have given up on this company and will be closing my account due to what's left. They may call their strategy a self direct platform where you are responsible for every trade you make but it's actually nonsense. If you deposit money to a brokerage, trust that it will be safe, pay for every trade you make you would think they will guide or help you during your experience of trading.

Etrade is not that type of brokerage that will help you. They will never send a red flag on purchases that may delist or expire. If they were smart enough to design such a platform then they would have designed a system from making highly risky stocks marginable or stocks that will expire tradeable. I have lost so much respect and time for them. Please save yourself the time and "hard earned" money from ever investing in the market or any brokerage firms such as Etrade. These firms are not around marketing to us for our best interests. It's "your money" that they want!!!

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20 people found this review helpful
Verified Buyer
Original review: Feb. 2, 2017

After being with E-Trade over 20 years I had not traded in the last couple of years because of investments targeted by the OOovvvomitt administration coal companies to be frank. I decided to set up a traditional Ira and for some reason which they would not tell me they had decided to end our business relationship as they state it. After wasting countless hours talking and being on hold and BS so called customer service I was told the reasons are in the mail? Unbelievable! They can't even be decent enough to tell you texting or by the phone. And behind the scenes closing all my accounts without even telling me!

Evidently you are only valuable to E-Trade when you are still worth tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars. Where was this attitude when I was shoveling day trading money for decades to E-Trade? They use you like a wet rag and throw you out like yesterday's news without even telling you anything. Not man enough to do it even behind a keyboard. Btw they lied about the reasons being sent in the mail! I still have not received that yet previously promised! Bunch of Greedy ** running the company and pansies too IMHO! Beware! E-Trade is as crooked as they come.

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24 people found this review helpful

eTrade expert review by ConsumerAffairs

E*TRADE is an online brokerage firm that offers consumers several financial tools for investing. Their online trading platform offers both a simple, easy-to-use interface as well as a more detailed and complex system for more advanced investors. E*TRADE was founded in 1982 and made its first electronic trade the following year.

  • Suggestion wizard: E*TRADE’s homepage features a wizard where potential investors can provide some basic information and then receive recommendations on which type of products and assets might be right for them. They do not need to provide any personally identifiable information to receive the recommendations.

  • Platform: E*TRADE’s platform provides clients with a one-page view of all their investments with options for researching more thoroughly. Investors who are concerned about the speed at which their transactions are processed and the way they are executed can find all the relevant information on the E*TRADE site.

  • Resources and tools: The E*TRADE website has stock market news articles, lists of investment ideas, historical charts to track trends and more. Account holders can also access tools like watch lists and advanced searching to screen stocks for their portfolio.

  • Education: Those who want to learn more about finances, trading, the stock market and other related topics can find educational resources on the E*TRADE site. The Knowledge Center section of the site has information articles and videos designed all types of investors.

  • E*TRADE Pro: Those who have an account with more than $250,000 or who execute more than 30 trades during a quarter can access the company’s Pro platform for free. It offers more advanced tools and data for experienced traders.

  • Best for: E*TRADE has tools that make it a best choice for all types of investors.

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The ConsumerAffairs Research Team believes everyone deserves to make smart decisions. We aim to provide readers with the most up-to-date information available about today's consumer products and services.

e*Trade Company Information

Company Name:
Year Founded:
1271 Avenue of the Americas, 14th Floor
New York
Postal Code:
United States
(800) 387-2331

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