TD Ameritrade

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Flag of the United States.svg.png This article contains details specific to United States (US) investors.

TD Ameritrade is a large online broker that originated from the merger of Ameritrade Holding Corporation and TD Waterhouse USA.

Boglehead-style investing at TD Ameritrade

The building blocks of Boglehead-style investing are low-expense-ratio index mutual funds and/or ETFs. Vanguard fans would suggest that Vanguard has the best and most complete lineup of such funds, and that the most convenient place to hold Vanguard mutual funds is directly at Vanguard. Thus, the Bogleheads forum and Wiki tends to be Vanguard-oriented. But, investing according to the Boglehead philosophy certainly does not require you to invest at Vanguard nor use Vanguard products. Here are some notes on how to do it at TD Ameritrade.

Tools for Boglehead-style investing

  • TD Ameritrade has commission free ETFs and stock trades in addition to several no transaction fee mutual funds. Please see ETFs vs Mutual Funds for details on ETF pros and cons.
Vanguard Fund Similar TD Ameritrade ETF Notes
US Stocks
Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund (VTSMX; 0.15%) SPDR Portfolio Total Stock Market ETF

(formerly THRK) (SPTM; 0.03%)

Vanguard Large Cap Index Fund (VLACX; 0.18%) SPDR Portfolio Large Cap ETF

(formerly ONEK) (SPLG; 0.03%)

Vanguard Mid Cap Index Fund (VIMSX; 0.18%) SPDR Portfolio Mid Cap ETF

(formerly SMD) (SPMD; 0.05%)

Vanguard Small Cap Index Fund (NAESX; 0.18%) SPDR Portfolio Small Cap ETF

(formerly TWOK) (SPSM; 0.05%)

Vanguard REIT Index Fund (VGSIX 0.26%) iShares Core US REIT ETF (USRT; 0.08%)
International Stocks
Vanguard Total International Stock Index Fund (VGTSX; 0.18%) SPDR Portfolio Developed World ex-US ETF (SPDW; 0.04%)

iShares MSCI ACWI ETF (ACWI; 0.31%)

Vanguard Emerging Markets Index Fund (VEIEX; 0.32%) SPDR Portfolio Emerging Markets ETF

(formerly GMM) (SPEM; 0.11%)

Vanguard FTSE All-World ex-US Small-Cap Index Fund (VFSVX; 0.27%) SPDR S&P International Small Cap ETF (GWX; 0.40%) GWX does not include emerging market small caps
Vanguard Global ex-U.S. Real Estate Index Fund (VGXRX 0.35%) iShares Global REIT ETF (REET; 0.14%) REET includes US and Global REITs.
Bonds and Fixed Income
Vanguard Total Bond Market Index Fund (VBMFX; 0.15%) SPDR Portfolio Aggregate Bond ETF (formerly BNDS) (SPAB; 0.04%)
Vanguard Inflation-Protected Securities Fund (VIPSX; 0.20%) SPDR Bloomberg Barclays TIPS ETF (IPE; 0.15%) VIPSX is not an index fund. VIPSX does not have a Vanguard ETF equivalent.
Vanguard Prime Money Market Fund (VMMXX; 0.16%) Federated Prime Cash Obligations Fund (PCOXX; 0.20%) VMMXX and PCOXX have similar credit quality and similar yields. The minimum has recently been abolished for TD Ameritrade account holders
  • Some investors may wish to tilt their portfolio to increase Value stocks. These investors may consider using the following:
    • International Value: iShares MSCI EAFE Value ETF (EFV; 0.39%)
    • Large Value: SPDR Portfolio S&P 500 Value ETF (SPYV; 0.04%)
    • Mid Value: SPDR S&P 400 Mid Cap Value ETF (MDYV; 0.15%)
    • Small Value: SPDR S&P 600 Small Cap Value ETF (SLYV; 0.15%)
  • Corresponding Growth ETFs are also available.
  • Some users may have employer-sponsored TD Ameritrade accounts which prohibit using ETFs. The lowest expense ratio NTF (No Transaction Fee) mutual funds at TD Ameritrade for various asset classes are as follows:
    • Total US Stock Market Fund: T. Rowe Price Total Equity Market Index Fund (POMIX; 0.40%).
    • S&P 500 large-cap US Equities fund: SSgA S&P 500 Index Fund Institutional Class (SVSPX; 0.16%).
    • Extended Stock Market mid and small-cap US Equities fund: T. Rowe Price Extended Equity Market Index Fund (PEXMX; 0.42%).
    • Small Cap Stock Market Index: Dreyfus Small Cap Stock Index Fund (DISSX; 0.50%).
    • Developed International Stock Index: T. Rowe Price International Equity Index Fund (PIEQX; 0.50%). Note: this index excludes Canada, Emerging Markets, and Small Cap equities.
    • Total Bond Market Index: T. Rowe Price U.S. Bond Enhanced Index Fund (PBDIX; 0.30%).[1]
    • TIPS Fund: American Century Investments Inflation Adjusted Bond Fund Investor Class (ACITX; 0.48%).

Brokerage account

You can buy mutual funds from various fund families, ETFs, individual stocks, bonds, and brokered CDs all within the same TD Ameritrade brokerage account.

  • TD Ameritrade's full fee schedule is here.

See also


  1. While PBDIX has historically tracked the Barclays Capital U.S. Aggregate Bond Index well, please see T. Rowe Price's PBDIX Objective Section for more details.