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Ameritrade Trashed

Tanona writes that TD Ameritrade's nearly 10% cut in guidance was not expected.

"While TD Ameritrade can't control the markets or, in general, activity trends, it appears to be having some issues achieving the much-anticipated savings from the conversion." Ameritrade acquired purchased Toronto-Dominion Bank's retail brokerage, TD Waterhouse, in January 2006.

TD Ameritrade's stock was down $1.28 to $15.59 on Tuesday.

Charles Schwab (SCHW) fared a bit better, partially from an acquisition in the quarter. The brokerage's profit rose 12% to $273 million, or 22 cents a share, meeting analysts' expectations.

Revenue rose 9% to $1.15 billion.

But average daily client trades dropped 16% last quarter to 230,400.

Schwab added 193,000 new brokerage accounts in the quarter, up 4% from a year earlier and 20% from the fourth quarter. The average fee per trade rose 7% from a year earlier to $14.33.

"With more predictable revenues and sustained expense discipline, we remained focused on delivering consistently strong financial performance," says CFO Chris Dodds. "Despite reduced client trading activity late in the quarter, we were able to increase our marketing investment by 35% over last year and still achieve a 33.9% pretax profit margin."

Total client assets rose 16% to $1.3 trillion. In the first quarter, on the heels of its $115 million purchase of 401(K) Co. from Nationwide Financial Services (NFS).

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