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Updated Sunday, January 9, 2011

Charts Grade: C

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The Merrill Edge charts are a mixed bag.  Charts are fairly small in size and the plot lines are very narrow which often makes it hard to discern details.  Many standard features are here, such as plot types, comparison charts, technical indicators and event indicators.  Other fairly standard features such as drawing tools and customizing chart colors are unfortunately missing.  Those investors that like to plot large, detailed charts should look elsewhere.


To retrieve charts at Merrill Edge, enter a stock symbol in the top text box to retrieve the quote.  Next select to view the company profile and then switch to the charting tab.  Once charts are loaded, these same steps need to be followed in order to switch securities.  A more streamlined menu with less clicks would be preferred.

For our first chart example let's take a look at a one year line chart for Goldcorp (GG).  Note the fairly small chart size and narrow line width, neither of which are customizable (click on images for larger views):

Next let's look at a three year line chart comparing Goldcorp with three other major mining companies.  It is hard to distinguish between the different lines because of the small chart size, narrow line width and hard to discern colors:

In total there are 22 different technical indicators along with dividend, earning, split and rating change events.  Here is a six month candlestick chart with bollinger bands, MACD lower indicator and dividend and earnings events.  The MACD chart is not shown for the first few dates which is an inherent design flaw:

Chart settings can be saved by clicking on the Save Chart Settings link.  This will load a dialogue box to enter a name.  Once this is done, chart settings can be loaded by clicking on the My Saved Settings link and selecting the previously saved name:

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