At Investor Junkie, we reviewed over 100 investing and personal finance services. Our goal is to bring you the most honest, simple, and informative reviews. Turns out, users also want to compare specific services.
This review compares TD Ameritrade Essential Portfolios and Merrill Edge Guided Investing (MEGI). The better service depends on your needs. So let's dive in!
According to our readers (you!), when it comes to robo advisors, people care most about the fees, minimum investment requirements, and whether or not the service supports for 401(k) plans. Let's look at how TD Ameritrade Essential Portfolios and Merrill Edge Guided Investing (MEGI) stack up against each other on these threads.
To start, we will compare the fees for trading with both robo advisors. TD Ameritrade Essential Portfolios has a fees starting at 0.30% fee per year. To contrast, Merrill Edge Guided Investing (MEGI) has annual fees of 0.45%.
When it comes to fees, TD Ameritrade Essential Portfolios is the cheaper service.
Let's consider the minimum investment that's required to use both TD Ameritrade Essential Portfolios and Merrill Edge Guided Investing (MEGI).
At $5,000, both services have the same minimum deposit.
Both TD Ameritrade Essential Portfolios and Merrill Edge Guided Investing (MEGI) have the same $5,000 minimum deposit.
Unfortunately, neither service offers assistance with your 401(k) and you will have to find another service if this is a requirement for you.
Overall, TD Ameritrade Essential Portfolios gets a 7/10 rating, while Merrill Edge Guided Investing (MEGI) gets a 8/10 rating. For more information on either service, you can read our full reviews on TD Ameritrade Essential Portfolios and Merrill Edge Guided Investing (MEGI).
About TD Ameritrade Essential Portfolios
With TD Ameritrade's robo advisor, you can take advantage of having at least some of your portfolio professionally managed while you maintain other self-directed investments. The advisory fee is reasonable, and the company offers local branches as a point of contact. However, details of the service's asset allocation remain cloudy.
About Merrill Edge Guided Investing (MEGI)
MEGI is a robo advisor that combines automated investing with active management of your portfolio. It invests your money in index-based ETFs, but it actively manages your portfolio allocation. This gives you an opportunity to both outperform the market and minimize losses in a downturn. The major negative is that the management fee is higher than those of most other robo advisors. But the active management component may very well justify the higher fee.
|Review||TD Ameritrade Essential Portfolios Review||Merrill Edge Guided Investing (MEGI) Review|
Overall rating as by Investor Junkie.Rating
|Commissions & Fees|
|Ease of Use|
|Tools & Resources|
|Accounts Available||Taxable, Joint, Roth IRA, Traditional IRA, Rollover IRA, Custodial, SEP IRA, SIMPLE IRA, Trusts, 529, Coverdell||Taxable, Joint, Roth IRA, Traditional IRA, Rollover IRA, Custodial, SEP IRA, SIMPLE IRA, 401(k), Solo 401(k), 529|
Does the robo-advisor offer assistance with your employer sponsored retirement plan?401(k) Guidance
|Tax Loss Harvesting||Yes — All Taxable Accounts||No|
|Retirement Planning Tools||No||Yes|
|Automatic Deposits||Yes||Daily, Weekly, Biweekly and Monthly|
|Clearing Agency||N/A||Merrill Lynch|
|Socially Responsible Investing||No||No|
|Invests in Commodities||No||No|
|Invests in Real Estate||No||No|
How can you access the sevice? Website only? Via smartphone app?Access
|Website, iOS App, Android App||Website, iOS App, Android App|
More security to prevent unauthorized access to your account.Two-Factor Authentication
|Customer Service||Phone — 24/7; Live Chat — 24/7; 100+ Local Branches||Phone: 24/7; Live Chat: 24/7; Email|
|Assets Under Management||$0||$0|
|Number of Accounts||N/A||N/A|
|Sign Up||Sign Up|