TD Ameritrade Saw Increase in Mobile Trades on Black Friday

Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN) wasn't the only company to enjoy brisk sales from smartphones on Black Friday. TD Ameritrade also saw an uptick in mobile trades. For Black Friday of 2017, TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation (AMTD​) reported that mobile trading increased to 28% of trades from 24% of trades last year. In 2015, 21% of trades during the kickoff to the holiday shopping season occurred on mobile devices.

"Black Friday is a great example of why access to the markets via mobile is so vital for investors," said Victor Jones, director of trading for TD Ameritrade, in a press release announcing the results. "We continue to see investors placing a record number of trades from their mobile devices on big holidays like this because many are on-the-go and not able to access their computer to place trades."

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According to TD Ameritrade, among the stocks clients traded on Black Friday, Marathon Patent Group, Inc. (MARA) was the most active, followed by Amazon, which has been a top stock on Black Friday for three years in a row, as well as Riot Blockchain, Inc. (RIOT), General Electric Company (GE) and Qudian Inc. (QD).

The increase in the use of mobile devices isn't reserved only for Black Friday. The the Omaha, Nebraska-based online brokerage said that it has seen record-breaking mobile averages for fiscal 2017, with average mobile trades per day coming in at 111,600. That compares with an average of 90,000 in fiscal 2016. For fiscal 2017, 22% of total trades were made on a mobile device compared with 19% in the year-ago period. The company also saw an average of 799,000 mobile monthly users, which is up from 638,000 in fiscal 2016.

With the stock markets surging, TD Ameritrade has been enjoying an uptick in the number of trades in recent months. As of the end of October, the company said that clients made an average of 680,000 trades each day, which marks a 55% increase from a year ago and a 19% increase from September. Meanwhile, total client assets hit $1.14 trillion at the end of October, up 49% from last year and 2% from September. The discount brokerage also said that average spread-based balances increased 31% from last year and 14% from September to $150.9 billion, while the average fee-based balance increased 29% from last October and 5% from September to $217.7 billion.

TD Ameritrade also reported that, while customers were net buyers for nine months in a row, it was from September to October that the broker saw its Investor Movement Index (IMX) jump close to 4% to reach the second highest reading in the history of the index. The online trading firm said that October was characterized by strong U.S. markets, positive quarterly earnings on behalf of all sorts of companies and a global economy that is strengthening. Taken together, that appeared to influence retail investors' behavior on the positive side.