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The table below compares brokerage accounts with retirement accounts.
|Brokerage Account||Retirement Account|
|Taxes||May incur capitals gains tax on investment income; investments sold 1 year or less after buying are subject to ordinary income tax||Typically no capital gains; tax-deferred or tax-free growth|
|Contributions||Unlimited||Caps on annual contributions|
|Withdrawals||No limits or penalties||Penalties for withdrawing before a certain age, unless exceptions are met|
|Primary Use||Stock trading, options trading, additional long-term investments after maxing out retirement accounts||Long-term growth, retirement savings|