I opened an etrade account about a year ago wanting to learn about trading stocks. I purchased 8 stocks from 5 difference companies. I just found out today that I have been accruing a 40 dollar "maintenance" quarterly fee by etrade for having an inactive account. I was never notified or forewarned about the fee. And because I was never notified by etrade, I had a negative balance. But today I received an email from Etrade, one of 5 emails over the course of a year that states a trade confirmation in my account. Apparently, etrade can sell your stocks for you whenever they feel like it without contacting you, yet they will send you an email after they do what they want with your account. I am a college student with very little money to go by. I had initially invested 150 dollars into etrade. So not only did I have to pay a high fee for each transaction, I have been paying a "maintenance" fee for the past year that costs almost as much as I had invested in stocks. Totally unscrupulous. Its big business stepping on the individual. It is a complete lack of respect for the individual. Etrade conducts itself in a very unsavory manner that I find disgusting.
This is a warning to other people who, like me, thought that Etrade would be user friendly and would not secretly siphon my money away without my knowledge.