What are the different types of brokers? I have seen brokerage prices vary from the Etrade top end of $32.95 to the $6.00(?) Interactive Broker trades. I am quite confused as to the difference between the discount brokers and the expensive ones. Why would anyone, active trader or the occasional mom-and-pop trader, choose the expensive brokerage firm?

Are there hidden fees and charges that I not aware of? Or is there something in the fine print of the discount brokers that drives business to the higher cost brokers?

Are there any resources (wiki or other information websites or books) that explain the basics and differences?