Volatility Was a Godsend for Retail Brokers in the First Quarter

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(Bloomberg) -- Retail brokerages E*Trade Financial Corp. and Charles Schwab Corp. welcomed the return of volatility.

The jump in the VIX from single digits to an average reading of 17.4 for the first quarter may have worried their clients, but the brokers saw a record number of average daily trades. Transactions for each of the firms surged more than 30 percent in the year’s first three months over the prior quarter.

Charles Schwab posted its highest quarterly revenue ever and E*Trade recorded the most sales in a quarter since 2009. TD Ameritrade Holding Corp., the other large public retail broker, reports earnings on April 24.

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