TD Ameritrade

Market volatility has led to longer than expected phone wait times. Visit our Top FAQs page for ways you can self-service. Learn about our COVID-19 response, including branch closings, in a message from our CEO.

Top FAQs

Increased volatility has increased questions. Here's how to get answers fast.

Volatility in the market has led to increased call volume. As always, we're committed to providing you with the answers you need. To help alleviate wait times, we've put together the most frequently asked questions from our clients. Hopefully, this FAQ list helps you get the info you need more quickly. 

To learn more about how we're responding to the ever-changing environment, read this letter from our CEO.

Pattern Day Trader Rule

What is the Pattern Day Trader rule and how can I be sure I'm not breaking it?

Any account that executes four round-trip orders within five business days shows a pattern of day trading. A round trip occurs when you buy and sell (or sell short and buy to cover) the same stock or options position during the same trading day. If you have been flagged as a pattern day trader, you will need at least $25,000 in total account value at the start of the day or you will have to wait 90 days before you can day trade. Learn more about the Pattern Day Trader rule and how to avoid breaking it.

If you would like to request the removal of the pattern day trader flag on your account, as a one-time exception to the Pattern Day Trader rule, please go to Client Services > Message Center to write us, or call our Margin Risk Department at 877-877-0272.

Margin Calls

What is a margin call?

A margin call is issued on an account when certain equity requirements aren't met when using borrowed funds (margin). When a margin call is issued, you will receive a notification via the secure Message Center in the affected account. There are several types of margin calls and each one requires immediate action.

Learn more about margin trading and various margin strategies

What should I do if I receive a margin call?

Margin calls are due immediately and require you to take prompt action. You can either close positions purchased on margin or deposit cash by ACH or wire. To use ACH, you must have connected a bank account. Most banks can be connected immediately. However, if you’re asked to look for test deposits in your bank account, you’ll be unable to transfer money right away.  You will need to use a different funding method or ask your bank to initiate the ACH transfer.

Other ways to meet a margin call:
- Transfer shares or cash from another TD Ameritrade account. To connect TD Ameritrade accounts for cash transfers, log in and go to My Account > Deposits & Transfers > Account/Bank Connections.
- Use mobile check deposit from the TD Ameritrade mobile app (Typically, a mobile check deposit appears in your account within minutes; however, if your check is returned for insufficient funds or is delayed for any other reason, that may result in a sellout of your positions without notice, regardless of your intent to cover them.)

For New Clients

How can I learn to trade or enhance my knowledge?

With timely articles and webcasts, an extensive library of how-to videos, and an immersive curriculum, our comprehensive resources will help you become a more informed trader.

Our Education Center also offers personalized learning paths  – just log in, tell us about your goals and interests, then choose a topic you want to learn more about. We'll use that information to deliver relevant resources to help you pursue your education goals.

Also, be sure to check out live market coverage and education from our media affiliate, the TD Ameritrade Network.*

 

 

*TD Ameritrade Network is brought to you by TD Ameritrade Media Productions Company. TD Ameritrade Media Productions Company and TD Ameritrade, Inc. are separate but affiliated subsidiaries of TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation. TD Ameritrade Media Productions Company is not a financial adviser, registered investment advisor, or broker-dealer.

How can I learn to set up and rebalance my investment portfolio?

Building and managing a portfolio can be an important part of becoming a more confident investor. Interested in learning about rebalancing? Our Education Coaches offer weekly webcasts on the Building Blocks of a Self-Directed Portfolio; check out this recorded session on the Portfolio Rebalancing Process

For a deeper dive, log in to your TD Ameritrade account to access the Simple Steps for a Retirement Portfolio course, offering step-by-step instructions on how to build a retirement-focused portfolio. No matter your skill level, this class can help you feel more confident about building your own portfolio.

 

Other questions?

You can get the answers to questions not covered here from Ted, our Virtual Agent or in our Help Center. After you log in to your account, click Support at the top of any page on the site, then Ask Ted or Help Center.

Funding and Transfers

How do I set up electronic (ACH) transfers with my bank?

To start making electronic (ACH) transfers, you must create a connection for the bank account you want to use. Before you try to connect your TD Ameritrade account to your bank account, we suggest contacting your bank to make sure that it permits ACH deposits and withdrawals, and that you have the correct routing and account numbers.

Setting up a bank connection
Log in to your account, go to My Account > Deposit & Transfers, and select "Account/Bank Connections". Choose "Electronic" (Bank ACH). If you already have bank connections, select "New Connection". Enter your bank account information.

In most cases, we can verify your bank account information immediately, enabling you to make deposits and withdrawals right away. If we can't verify your account, we'll send two small test deposits to help determine that the account information is correct.

Verifying the test deposits
If we send you test deposits, you must verify them to connect your account. Here’s what to do:

1. Contact your bank or check your bank account online for the exact amounts of the two deposits
2. Log in to your TD Ameritrade account
3. Go to My Account > Deposits & Transfers > Account/Bank Connections and enter each amount

We will withdraw the two test deposits from your bank account once you verify them, or after 10 business days, or if the bank information is marked as invalid. Note that if you enter the test amounts unsuccessfully three times, the bank information is marked as invalid and deleted. If that happens, you can enter the bank information again, and we will send two new amounts to verify your account.

About IRA deposits
ACH funding is not available for some retirement accounts. Federal law sets IRA contribution limits, as stated in the Internal Revenue Code; you cannot exceed maximum contribution limits. Applicable state law may be different. TD Ameritrade does not provide tax or legal advice. Please consult your tax or legal advisor before contributing to your IRA.

Still looking for more information? Here is a step-by-step walk-through of the process.

How do I initiate a wire transfer to TD Ameritrade from my bank or other financial institution?

Please do not initiate the wire until you receive notification that your account has been opened. To avoid a rejected wire or a delay in processing, include your active TD Ameritrade account number. 

If your bank is located in the United States

Wells Fargo Bank, NA
420 Montgomery Street
San Francisco, CA 94104
ABA transit routing # 121000248

For credit to:
TD Ameritrade Clearing, Inc.
Account # 4123214561


*For benefit of:
Your nine-digit TD Ameritrade account number
Your name
Your address

*Required for timely and accurate processing of your wire request.

Please contact TD Ameritrade, and not Wells Fargo Bank, with questions or concerns about a wire transfer. Please do not send checks to this address.

If your bank is located outside the United States

First National Bank of Omaha
16th & Dodge Streets
Omaha, NE 68102
ABA # 104000016
Swift Code / BIC: FNBOUS44XXX (If your bank requires it)

For credit to:
TD Ameritrade Clearing, Inc.
A/C # 16424641

*For benefit of:
Your nine-digit TD Ameritrade account number
Your name
Your address

*Required for timely and accurate processing of your wire request.

Please contact TD Ameritrade, and not First National Bank of Omaha, with questions or concerns about wire transfers.

How do I deposit a check?

Mobile deposit

Fast, convenient, and secure. Deposit a check right from your smartphone or tablet with our app. Mobile check deposits are limited to $50,000 per day for non-retirement accounts and $100,000 for retirement account rollovers.

Mobile check deposit not available for all accounts. Other restrictions may apply. See Mobile Check Deposit Service User Agreement for complete terms and conditions.

Mailing checks:

Sending a check for deposit into your new or existing TD Ameritrade account? Make checks payable to "TD Ameritrade Clearing, Inc." (except third party checks)

For non-IRAs, please submit a Deposit Slip with a check filled out with your account number and mail to:

Regular Mail: PO Box 2760, Omaha, NE 68103-2760
Overnight Mail: 200 S 108th Ave., Omaha, NE 68154-2631

For IRAs, please submit an IRA Deposit Slip with a check filled out with your account number and mail to:

Regular Mail: PO Box 2789, Omaha, NE 68103-2229
Overnight Mail: 200 S 108th Ave., Omaha, NE 68154-2631

When will my funds be available for trading?

Funds must post to your account before you can trade with them. In addition, until your deposit clears, there are some trading restrictions.

Wire from a bank
Time to post: Immediate once received from the bank (domestic: 1-3 hours; int’l: 1-2 days)
Funds available to trade most stocks priced over $5 per share: Immediate once posted
Funds available to trade options and most stocks priced under $5 per share (commissions may apply): Immediate once posted 
Funds available for withdrawal: Immediate once posted

Bank-initiated ACH
Time to post: Immediate once received from the bank (1-2 days)
Funds available to trade most stocks priced over $5 per share: Immediate once posted
Funds available to trade options and most stocks priced under $5 per share (commissions may apply): Immediate once posted 
Funds available for withdrawal: Immediate once posted

ACH initiated from your TD Ameritrade account* 
Time to post: Immediate if received before 7 p.m. ET on business days
Funds available to trade most stocks priced over $5 per share: Immediate once posted
Funds available to trade options and most stocks priced under $5 per share (commissions may apply): Up to 4 business days once posted 
Funds available for withdrawal:  Up to 4 business days once posted

Mobile check deposit
Time to post: Typically within minutes
Funds available to trade most stocks priced over $5 per share: Immediate once posted
Funds available to trade options and most stocks priced under $5 per share (commissions may apply): Up to 4 business days once posted 
Funds available for withdrawal: Up to 4 business days once posted

Mailed checks 
Time to post: Typically within one business day after receipt
Funds available to trade most stocks priced over $5 per share: Immediate once posted
Funds available to trade options and most stocks priced under $5 per share (commissions may apply): Up to 4 business days once posted
Funds available for withdrawal: Up to 4 business days once posted

Cash transfers** between TD Ameritrade accounts 
Time to post: Typically within minutes
Funds available to trade most stocks priced over $5 per share: Immediate once posted
Funds available to trade options and most stocks priced under $5 per share (commissions may apply): Immediate once posted
Funds available for withdrawal: Immediate once posted

*ACH deposits initiated from your TD Ameritrade account cannot be canceled once they are submitted.

**Securities transfers and certain cash transfers can take 1-3 business days, depending on the assets involved. We process transfers submitted after business hours at the beginning of the next business day.

Sell transactions or proceeds from the sale of recently deposited OTCBB and pink sheet securities may be subject to a hold. Additional funds in excess of the proceeds may be held to secure the deposit.

 

How do I transfer an account or assets from another brokerage firm to my TD Ameritrade account?

To transfer assets from another brokerage company, transfer agent, or mutual fund company, log in to your account, and go to My Account > Account Transfer. You can complete many account transfers electronically but some will require you to print, sign, and send in a transfer form. Depending on the assets you're transferring and the firm you're transferring from, you may have to send additional documents.

You can transfer:

- All of an account at another company
- Assets you select from an account at another company
- A mutual fund account
- An IRA

You can also transfer an employer-sponsored retirement account, such as a 401(k) or a 403(b). Find out more on our 401(k) Rollovers page.

How do I transfer between two TD Ameritrade accounts?

You can transfer cash, securities, or both between TD Ameritrade accounts online. You can make a one-time transfer or save a connection for future use.

Connect your accounts for internal transfers 
Go to My Account > Deposits & Transfers > Account/Bank Connections, and select "TD Ameritrade Account." In some cases, we may ask you to print, complete, and return a form (Letter of Instruction to Connect TD Ameritrade Accounts for Cash Transfers), which you can return to us through the secure Message Center (using a scan or picture of the completed form), by fax, or by mail. Once your accounts are connected, you’ll be able to transfer cash online any time without additional forms.

Log into the account that will send the transfer and go to My Account > Deposits & Transfers > Internal Transfer, then complete the online request. Cash transfers typically occur immediately. Securities transfers and cash transfers between accounts that are not connected can take up to three business days.

Restrictions/limitations
Due to industry regulations, there may be restrictions on transfers involving certain account types (such as legal entity accounts and custodial accounts). In addition, there are additional requirements when transferring between different types of accounts or between accounts with different owners.

 

Opening a New Account

What is the minimum amount required to open an account?

There is no minimum to open a new account; however, a $2,000 deposit is required to be considered for margin and options privileges, regardless of any promotional offer.

What is the fastest way to open a new account?

Opening an account online is the fastest way to open and fund an account. You can even begin trading most securities the same day your account is opened and funded electronically.

Interested in transferring your account to TD Ameritrade? It can be done in two simple steps.

What types of investments can I make with a TD Ameritrade account?

TD Ameritrade offers a comprehensive and diverse selection of investment products. You can trade stocks, options, mutual funds, ETFs, futures, forex, and bonds and CDs in a standard account. Please note that investment choices may vary in less common account types such as Trust accounts, 529 education accounts, and pension plans. Each plan will specify what types of investments are allowed. See account types and investment products for more information.

Can I trade margin or options?

Yes. As you're completing the account application, simply complete the margin and/or options section. We'll review the information, and if appropriate, extend margin and/or options privileges to your account.

For existing clients, you need to set up your account to trade options.

Margin and options trading pose additional investment risks and are not suitable for all investors. In addition, certain account types may not be eligible for margin, options, or advanced options trading privileges. Please read Characteristics and Risks of Standardized OptionsMargin Disclosure Document, and the Margin Account Handbook.

Are there any fees?

We believe in fair, straightforward pricing and for you that means $0.00 commissions on online US exchange-listed stocks, ETFs and options regardless of account balance or how many shares you buy. For options trades a $0.65 per contract fee applies. You won't be charged any platform, inactivity, or market data fees. Please review our commission and fees for complete details.

Is my account protected?

If you lose cash or securities from your account due to unauthorized activity, we'll reimburse you for the cash or shares of securities you lost. We offer you this protection, which adds to the provisions that already govern your account, in case unauthorized activity ever occurs and it was through no fault of your own. Explore more about our asset protection guarantee. 

TD Ameritrade is a member of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation ("SIPC"), which protects securities customers of its members up to $500,000 (including $250,000 for claims for cash). Explanatory brochure is available on request at www.sipc.com.

Additionally, TD Ameritrade provides each client $149.5 million worth of protection for securities and $2 million of protection for cash through supplemental coverage provided by London insurers. In the event of a brokerage insolvency, a client may receive amounts due from the trustee in bankruptcy and then SIPC. Supplemental coverage is paid out after the trustee and SIPC payouts and under such coverage each client is limited to a combined return of $152 million from a trustee, SIPC and London insurers. The TD Ameritrade supplemental coverage has an aggregate limit of $500 million over all customers. This policy provides coverage following brokerage insolvency and does not protect against loss in market value of securities.

Can I trade OTC bulletin boards, pink sheets, or penny stocks?

Yes. Over-the-counter bulletin board (OTCBB), pink sheets, and penny stocks can be bought and sold via the web, IVR phone system, or with a broker for the same flat, straightforward pricing that you get with other types of trades. Before placing an order for OTCBB security, please review the OTCBB Securities Trading Rules. You should also take the time to carefully research the company and examine your investment objectives.

A $6.95 commission applies to OTCBB securities, pink sheets, and penny stocks. To see all pricing information, visit our pricing page.

How does TD Ameritrade protect its client accounts?

TD Ameritrade, Inc. is a member of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC), which protects securities customers of its members up to $500,000 (including $250,000 for claims for cash). Explanatory brochure available on request at www.sipc.org.

Additionally, TD Ameritrade provides each client $149.5 million worth of protection for securities and $2 million of protection for cash through supplemental coverage provided by London insurers. In the event of a brokerage insolvency, a client may receive amounts due from the trustee in bankruptcy and then SIPC.  Supplemental coverage is paid out after the trustee and SIPC payouts and under such coverage each client is limited to a combined return of $152 million from a trustee, SIPC, and London insurers. The TD Ameritrade supplemental coverage has an aggregate limit of $500 million over all customers. This policy provides coverage following brokerage insolvency and does not protect against loss in market value of the securities.

Login Help

What if I can't remember the answer to my security question?

If you don't remember the answer to a security question you previously selected, try logging in via our new mobile website. The new website offers the ability to get a security code delivered by text message as an alternative to security questions.

What if I forgot my user ID and/or password?

Retrieve your user ID.
Reset your password.

Tax Questions and 1099 Tax Form

Tax deadline extension from April 15 to July 15

The filing deadline for 2019 tax returns has been extended by three months, from April 15, 2020, to July 15, 2020. Taxpayers and businesses will have this additional time both to file and to make payments without interest or penalties. This extension will be automatic – no paperwork is required for it. 

Where can I find my consolidated 1099 tax form and other tax documents online?

You can find the most recent versions of your consolidated 1099 and other tax documents in our Tax Center under "Your Year-end Tax Documents" module. 

I received a corrected consolidated 1099 tax form after I had already filed my taxes. What should I do?

The IRS generally requires that you file an amended return on Form 1040X. You may also wish to seek the advice of a licensed tax advisor.

TD Ameritrade must issue a corrected 1099 when mutual funds and Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) reallocate or reclassify their distributions in January for the previous tax year. Occasionally this process isn't complete, or TD Ameritrade has not yet received the updated information, by the time 1099s are due to be mailed.

IRS regulations require that we issue a corrected 1099 within 30 days of receiving information showing that the previously issued form was incorrect.

Breaking Market News and Volatility

Where can I go to get updates on the latest market news?

Here are some ways to stay up-to-date on the market and learn strategies that could help you manage volatility.

What's JJ Kinahan saying?
See the Daily Market Update in The Ticker Tape® from our Chief Market Strategist JJ Kinahan. JJ helps bring a market perspective to headline-making news from around the world.

How are the markets reacting?
Tune in to our media affiliate, TD Ameritrade Network*, for real-time analysis from market professionals. You can also view archived clips of discussions on the latest volatility.

*TD Ameritrade Network is brought to you by TD Ameritrade Media Productions Company. TD Ameritrade Media Productions Company and TD Ameritrade, Inc. are separate but affiliated subsidiaries of TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation. TD Ameritrade Media Productions Company is not a financial adviser, registered investment advisor, or broker-dealer.

How can I learn more about developing a plan for volatility?
Our Education Center has a variety of courses and videos designed to help you understand volatility and develop a plan of action. You can get started with these videos:

Handling Market Downturns
The COVID-19 Coronavirus Impact on U.S. and World Markets
- Should You Stay Invested During a Recession?
3 Tips for Surviving a Market Selloff
Stock Order Types: Limit Orders, Market Orders, and Stop Order

thinkorswim Platform Questions

I have a question about using thinkorswim.

thinkorswim is a powerful trading platform. We have many resources that can help you maximize your experience:

Full playlist of brief how-to videos, including thinkorswim Tutorial: Introduction to thinkorswim.

- The thinkorswim Learning Center is available via web or directly in the platform. Just click “Education” across the top navigation (between “Tools” and “Help”). Then select “Learning Center”. Or download the How to thinkorswim Guide—a comprehensive guide to everything thinkorswim.

I'm looking to find articles and news within thinkorswim.

thinkorswim allows you to stream live news directly in the platform. Through the gadgets in the left sidebar, you can access:

- Live News: Curated articles mentioning specific positions
- Trader TV: Live video streams from our media affiliate, TD Ameritrade Network, and CNBC

For help customizing your gadgets, check out our video: Customizing Gadgets in the Left Sidebar on thinkorswim.

TD Ameritrade Branches

How are local TD Ameritrade branches impacted?

Out of an abundance of caution, to protect both our clients and associates from the spread of COVID-19, we have decided to close our network of branches nationwide. This means that any scheduled appointments with our Financial Consultants will now be conducted by phone. We’ll update you as soon as conditions change in your local area and branches can reopen. You can also check the branch locator for the most up to date information on your local branch.

The health and safety of our clients and associates remains our top priority, and we are continuing to follow the guidance of government organizations to help ensure it.

Check the background of TD Ameritrade on FINRA's BrokerCheck