Etrade vs Vanguard

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NitaaiDoc
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Joined: Mon May 25, 2020 9:34 pm

Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by NitaaiDoc »

Hi,
New to the forum. What a storehouse of investing knowledge. Thanks all.
I have a etrade brokerage account. I will like to invest in Vanguard index funds only from now on. Is it beneficial to purchase them through Vanguard website or continue with Etrade as there are no transaction fees there also. I heard that after a certain amount invested at Vanguard one gets an access to a personal advisor which is a plus. Thanks again.
dru808
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by dru808 »

Buy at etrade, even if mutual funds arent’t ntf you can just buy the etf without charge. No point in moving. I believe the benefits you write of are slowly disappearing.
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galawdawg
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by galawdawg »

NitaaiDoc wrote: Mon May 25, 2020 9:38 pm Hi,
New to the forum. What a storehouse of investing knowledge. Thanks all.
I have a etrade brokerage account. I will like to invest in Vanguard index funds only from now on. Is it beneficial to purchase them through Vanguard website or continue with Etrade as there are no transaction fees there also. I heard that after a certain amount invested at Vanguard one gets an access to a personal advisor which is a plus. Thanks again.
I switched to E*TRADE last year after thirty years with Vanguard, but I still only have Vanguard mutual funds. There are no more benefits at Vanguard for larger accounts (formerly Flagship benefits). While we used to have access to a financial planner and an annual financial plan, that benefit disappeared, along with free TurboTax, a dedicated Flagship representative, a cash management account and others. Now if you want an "advisor", you have to subscribe to their Personal Advisory Service which costs 0.30% of all assets under management. Many here find that additional cost service adds no real benefit.

So buy the Vanguard funds at E*TRADE as long as they have no transaction fee. Same product as Vanguard offers but much, much better service.
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Cheez-It Guy
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by Cheez-It Guy »

E-Trade was recently acquired by Morgan Stanley, so don't be too surprised if there are changes on the horizon.
nanameg
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by nanameg »

galawdawg wrote: Tue May 26, 2020 6:25 am
NitaaiDoc wrote: Mon May 25, 2020 9:38 pm Hi,
New to the forum. What a storehouse of investing knowledge. Thanks all.
I have a etrade brokerage account. I will like to invest in Vanguard index funds only from now on. Is it beneficial to purchase them through Vanguard website or continue with Etrade as there are no transaction fees there also. I heard that after a certain amount invested at Vanguard one gets an access to a personal advisor which is a plus. Thanks again.
I switched to E*TRADE last year after thirty years with Vanguard, but I still only have Vanguard mutual funds. There are no more benefits at Vanguard for larger accounts (formerly Flagship benefits). While we used to have access to a financial planner and an annual financial plan, that benefit disappeared, along with free TurboTax, a dedicated Flagship representative, a cash management account and others. Now if you want an "advisor", you have to subscribe to their Personal Advisory Service which costs 0.30% of all assets under management. Many here find that additional cost service adds no real benefit.

So buy the Vanguard funds at E*TRADE as long as they have no transaction fee. Same product as Vanguard offers but much, much better service.
Galawdawg can u describe what E*TRADE is like and why you find the service there so much better than at Vanguard?
TSPballer
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by TSPballer »

+1 for E*Trade

They've been my only broker for 10+ years. They don't have every VG fund available to buy but they have everything that I'll ever need.

Why ET?

Their customer service has always been on point when any issues arose.
Their website/mobile app are very user friendly.
Excellent security with their hard token security keys.
$0 commission on trades (the new norm, but still worth mentioning)

Hope this helps!
bugleheadd
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by bugleheadd »

i use etrade and fidelity. both are good.
CRTR
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by CRTR »

I feel uniquely qualified to comment given we've had accounts at both Etrade and Vanguard for >20 years. We are Flagship clients at Vanguard and have some sort of special status at Etrade (they keep changing the name: used to be Platinum, then Premium, now "Special Active Trader" status).

As GALAWDAWG clearly pointed out, there has been a steady reduction in Flagship benefits over the years. During that same period, we've gone through ~8-10 personal Flagship representatives. They were all very competent and helpful, which was important because other parts of Vanguard customer service are a mess. On the other hand, the high turnover made it impossible to maintain a relationship.

At Etrade, we've had the same personal "Financial Consultant" the entire time. Like the Flagship representatives, he's been a great resource. Wow, does he take good care of us. On average, Etrade's customer service is, IMHO, much better than Vanguard's and it is nice having a direct line to one guy, who can take care of anything quickly!

Not all Vanguard funds are transaction free at Etrade. Their Admiral share class of their actively managed lineup may not be NTF at Etrade. We own a couple (VMNVX, VGCAX, VFIRX) and our "Financial Consultant" guy always gets the transaction fee refunded but I'm not sure this is standard practice (an example of my Etrade reps care). Furthermore, these same mutual funds can't be purchased online: we have to call into the "Bond Desk" and the trades are placed manually.

As Cheez-It Guy mentioned, Etrade was acquired by Morgan Stanley. Nobody (including my personal account rep) knows what's going to happen there. Our Etrade rep seem to think they will be expanding/integrating banking services (cash management, credit cards, etc) and pushing advisor services first but he admits this is just conjecture. So, who knows what's going to happen there.

My final point on this topic is that due to the steady decline in customer service at Vanguard (as WIDELY discussed on this board), We are in the process of closing our accounts there and consolidating everything at Etrade. Lol, every time we move an account to Etrade, they throw $$ money at us. They have an active, hassle free, bonus system for account or $$ transfers. It's nice to get the $2500 but it's not really a factor for getting our $$ out of Vanguard into Etrade.
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galawdawg
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by galawdawg »

Here is what my experience has been, the experience of others may vary.

1. Prior to opening the account, I contacted the closest E*TRADE office (Atlanta) to ask a number of questions. I also reached out to Schwab, Fidelity and Merrill Edge. E*TRADE was incredibly responsive, responding to all of my questions very quickly and thoroughly.
2. The local E*TRADE representative discussed account promotions and even suggested we not move our entire portfolio initially so that we could maximize the bonus offers. Once we moved $1 million and received the bonus, he reached out to confirm that the bonus posted correctly and provided details on a new bonus offer for existing customers that we could also receive by moving over the remainder of our portfolio. E*TRADE aggregated the amounts of our retirement and non-retirement accounts, both joint and individual, in calculating the bonus offers, which allowed us to receive a significant bump in the amount. Our local representative followed up with us at each stage of the ACATS transfer to confirm when the shares would be in our E*TRADE account, confirmed when the arrived and were posted, estimated when the cost basis information would transfer over and then confirmed when cost basis information was received.
3. The local E*TRADE representative has been very responsive to our needs or inquiries. He has responded to emails even on the weekends and we have both his direct line and cell phone number. And on the couple of occasions we reached out to their twenty-four hour Elite Services Team by phone or message, not only did we receive prompt and correct information from that inquiry but our local representative also contacted us to be sure that whatever we needed was handled well.
4. E*TRADE has customer service representatives available twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week (Elite Services Team for those with larger portfolios). Every time I have reached out to them, I have received prompt, courteous and responsive service. Try reaching someone at Vanguard outside of normal business hours.
5. We have received no sales pitches or upsells. Our local representative likes Vanguard funds, particular their index funds. He thought our 80/20 portfolio of VTSAX and VBTLX was well suited to our financial situation. He did mention that if we felt in the future that we needed assistance in additional planning or making changes to our investment plan, that he was available to assist.
6. Thus far, every interaction has been positive and we have received the correct information the first time each time we have made an inquiry.

I posted a thread on my experience moving away from Vanguard (the brokerage, not the funds), which may provide some additional information: viewtopic.php?t=291658

And as CRTR mentioned, most but not quite all Vanguard funds are available with NTF. Here is a list of NTF Vanguard funds that I compiled from the E*TRADE website: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1OpHwVx ... sp=sharing
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galawdawg
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by galawdawg »

CRTR wrote: Tue May 26, 2020 9:24 am As Cheez-It Guy mentioned, Etrade was acquired by Morgan Stanley. Nobody (including my personal account rep) knows what's going to happen there. Our Etrade rep seem to think they will be expanding/integrating banking services (cash management, credit cards, etc) and pushing advisor services first but he admits this is just conjecture. So, who knows what's going to happen there.
Hopefully it won't be as obtrusive as Vanguard's marketing of PAS that coincided with the time I began looking at moving away from Vanguard.

I don't know if it is still the case, but the last month or two I was at Vanguard, I was forced to see the large Vanguard PAS banner ad AND a Vanguard PAS pop-up ad EVERY TIME I logged in. I had to click on the X on the pop-up and then had to scroll down below the banner ad just to see any of my account information.

Image

I had previously notified Vanguard that I did not wish to receive any marketing, including any PAS marketing. So when this started appearing, I sent a secure message to the "Flagship pool" representatives (since I no longer had a dedicated representative) complaining about it. I received a curt reply almost forty-eight hours later that "We apologize for any inconvenience you may have experienced during this transitional period. Please know that your feedback is important to Vanguard, and I have forwarded your thoughts to the appropriate area." I can't help but wonder if the "appropriate area" was the deleted messages folder or trash can!

The obnoxious PAS ads at log-in persisted. While I had already made the decision to move my portfolio from Vanguard, that experience was confirmation that I was making the correct decision.
nanameg
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by nanameg »

I agree the marketing push is intense for PAS at Vanguard. I did hire one this April and I’m not overly impressed as I’ve described elsewhere.

Is there a fee for the representative who helps you at E*trade?

Do u think the website and platform is user friendly for a iPad only, no computer skills 64 year old?
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galawdawg
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by galawdawg »

I don't pay a fee for the assistance of our local representative, but I also don't ask him to assist with financial planning, investment decisions and such. He pretty much does the same thing as Flagship representatives did at Vanguard when they were at their best, but he is proactive and much more responsive than even the best Flagship reps were.

I suspect you can get more hand-holding and advice from E*TRADE at additional cost. I'd recommend you reach out to them and ask questions. That will give you the information you are looking for and it will also give you some idea how responsive and helpful they are.

I find the advice here at Bogleheads is as good as I ever received from Vanguard and generally much better.

I like E*TRADE's website and app; I find them more robust and much more reliable than Vanguard. I don't use Apple products, so I don't know how their iPad or iPhone apps are. I'd imagine you can download them and give them a try. You can do research and such even if you don't have an account.
jajlrajrf
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by jajlrajrf »

I have both E-Trade and Vanguard accounts for different reasons, and generally prefer E-Trade. More transparency, and I prefer their security / 2-factor options to Vanguard's.
Topic Author
NitaaiDoc
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by NitaaiDoc »

Thanks for the info all.
Will stick with Etrade.
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Tubes
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by Tubes »

I moved from E-trade to Vanguard 10 years ago in order to achieve those Flagship benefits. And now they are gone (see previous answers).

I liked E-trade's web interface better. I did have some glitches with constant amendments to 1099s, but I think that was an underlying fund causing them problems, and not their fault.

Finally, E-trade's hardware token key is real security. I miss that.

My portfolio has simplified enough now so I won't be changing from VG at this time.
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ruralavalon
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by ruralavalon »

Thanks galawdawg and CRTR for the insights on customer service and availability of Vanguard funds with E*Trade.

I have been satisfied with Vanguard customer service, and somehow don't receive any marketing push for VPAS or popups about switching to brokerage accounts. I don't know how we got under the marketing radar. We are Flagship but don't miss the old Flagship benefits, we never used them.

I went to Vanguard 16 years ago to get away from Morgan Stanley, so their pending acquisition of E*Trade is of some concern to me.

Does E*Trade have an app for Android users?
"Everything should be as simple as it is, but not simpler." - Albert Einstein | Wiki article link:Getting Started
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galawdawg
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by galawdawg »

ruralavalon wrote: Fri May 29, 2020 11:55 am Does E*Trade have an app for Android users?
Yes, they have two apps.

E*TRADE (https://play.google.com/store/apps/deta ... y&hl=en_US)
Power E*TRADE (https://play.google.com/store/apps/deta ... e&hl=en_US_)

I just use the E*TRADE app, it does everything I need.
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ruralavalon
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by ruralavalon »

galawdawg wrote: Fri May 29, 2020 12:07 pm
ruralavalon wrote: Fri May 29, 2020 11:55 am Does E*Trade have an app for Android users?
Yes, they have two apps.

E*TRADE (https://play.google.com/store/apps/deta ... y&hl=en_US)
Power E*TRADE (https://play.google.com/store/apps/deta ... e&hl=en_US_)

I just use the E*TRADE app, it does everything I need.
Thank you.
"Everything should be as simple as it is, but not simpler." - Albert Einstein | Wiki article link:Getting Started
tashnewbie
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by tashnewbie »

I'm a new investor and Vanguard is my first real brokerage house (I also have a small account at Schwab). This discussion has been informative and makes Etrade seem very attractive. It'll be interesting to see if there are any negative changes at Etrade as a result of the Morgan Stanley acquisition.
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siamond
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by siamond »

I've been using both for years. Vanguard for IRAs and Roth-IRAs, E*Trade for taxable account + checking/savings. All investments with Vanguard funds. I don't see any reason to change. I still have a small HSA at Fidelity, waiting for some significant medical expenses to get rid of it...
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beyou
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Re: Etrade vs Vanguard

Post by beyou »

I have both.
No doubt better service and tech at Etrade.
I do use admiral funds not available online at etrade though, so I do keep $ at Vanguard.

Yes the Flagship service is not what it used to be, but I need very little help from either firm and did get the help needed at both when those rare situations arose. For me, being able to do all my business online is important. Both have had needs where cust svc had to get involved, did well, but very rare over many years.
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