Scottrade rated best discount broker

Closeup of hundred dollar bills

Members of the American Association of Individual Investors have given Scottrade top marks for overall satisfaction four years in a row.

TD Ameritrade, Fidelity, Charles Schwab and E-Trade Financial came in second through fifth in the association's 2007 survey.

A discount broker may provide information about a stock or mutual fund, but it doesn't offer advice on where to put your money. That's what distinguishes it from a full-service broker.

It's a little surprising that Scottrade does so well with the do-it-yourself set since it charges $7 for an online trade -- twice as much as some competitors.

But you only need $500 to open an account, there are no annual or monthly maintenance fees, and it's relatively easy to speak with someone in person at more than 300 offices across the country.

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