If you like to trade US stocks, options or futures, one of the best platform you can use is TD Ameritrade. For users from Asia, you can register with TD Ameritrade Singapore.
TD Ameritrade is a company of over 40 years and with more than 100 branches. Some brokerage companies impose minimum amount of deposit to open an account but not TD Ameritrade. There is no maintenance fees, yearly or monthly fees or platform fees for TD Ameritrade. You can start using the tools, monitoring stock prices, trading in simulation mode etc even before funding your account.
TD Ameritrade is a member of FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) and SIPC (Securities Investor Protection Corporation). FINRA's mission is to safeguard the investing public against fraud and bad practices. SIPC protects against the loss of cash and securities – such as stocks and bonds – held by a customer at a financially-troubled SIPC-member brokerage firm. The limit of SIPC protection is $500,000, which includes a $250,000 limit for cash.
TD Ameritrade is a mature platform with large community. Trading can be done from desktop and mobile (Anfroid and iOS). There are very powerful charting features on this platform. You can also install Thinkscript to enhance your analysis.
I opened a new account from TD Ameritrade Asia in 2016 after receiving notification from TD Ameritrade US. Depending on your selection of education partner at that time during account application, here is the rate I got.
|Futures Rates||USD2.25 + fees|
USD0.15 per share min,
USD5.00 max. USD9.95
My friends and I applied account together at the same time. Some selected a "Danxxx Lxx" in the education partner field. Their rates are double of what we obtained. We selected "Beyxxx Insxxxx". You can send a letter to TD Ameritrade to ask for lowe rates. Or it will be much better if you trade actively first, then ask for lower rate with your transaction record.