Global online investing company to offer Middle East customers direct access to US investing products & services from the Dubai International Financial Centre

E*TRADE FINANCIAL Corporation (Nasdaq: ETFC), a leading S&P 500 and NASDAQ Financial 100 company, today announced the opening of its flagship office in the Middle East, located at the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC).  Through its new dedicated Web site,www.uae.etrade.com, the Company will offerHigh Net Worth Individual investors* online access to the US stock markets.  The move sets out to provide customers in the region with global access, better value and high-speed transactions.  Commissions start from as low as $9.99 per trade, with 2-second execution guarantees on S&P 500 stocks, advanced trading tools and research, and priority customer service through a dedicated team of Relationship Managers.

In a statement released today, Mathias Helleu, Executive Vice President of E*TRADE Financial’s International operation, stated, “Our launch in the UAE marks a very important step in the company’s global expansion plans.  The US stock market provides many opportunities to the UAE investor, including superior liquidity, transparency, access to real-time market data and over 5,000 dynamic companies that are shaping their respective industries.”

Assem O. Kabesh, Chief Business Development Officer of the DIFC and Member of the Board of the DIFC Authority, added, “New technology has helped bridged the gap that previously separated investors in the Middle East from stock markets in the West. Today, thanks in part to advances in technology, investors from this part of the world can now fully participate in any market, anywhere, in real time. In that spirit, I’m pleased to welcome 
E*TRADE FINANCIAL to the growing DIFC family. I am confident that the firm will make a significant contribution to the DIFC’s mission of connecting investors from both East and West.”

E*TRADE FINANCIAL’s development in the Gulf area will be headed up by Mikaal Abdulla, General Manager and Group Vice President, an experienced member of the Company’s senior management team with eight years experience helping the company expand globally.  Mr. Abdulla stated, 
“Due to the rapid growth of Internet penetration in the Middle East and the increasing sophistication of the local investor, we see a great deal of opportunity in the region.  Our existing customers in the GCC are amongst the most active traders we have globally.  With the incredible growth in the UAE stock market over the past six years we now are experiencing a natural correction.  E*TRADE FINANCIAL is seeing many customers move investments into the US stock market that has been performing well. Furthermore, the US market is a means to diversify investments between the DFM and the NYSE & Nasdaq.”

Mr. Abdulla went on to say, “We believe that E*TRADE FINANCIAL’s twenty years of innovation in online investing and global scale with more than four million accounts executing more than 35,000,000 trades last year, will bring real product and cost advantages to the UAE investor.”

*  Individual clients need to meet the eligibility criteria as set in “The DFSA Rulebook”.

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