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ETF investors, stay away from this freebie

Here’s how to make ETF naysayers gloat: Take advantage of an offer one online brokerage firm has for 500 free stock trades and buy and sell your brains out.

The emergence of exchange-traded funds is the most significant pro-investor development of the past two decades. ETFs cost little to buy, little to own and you can build a portfolio that will carry you through many decades with half a dozen or fewer funds. But there’s one nagging criticism of ETFs: Investors are sometimes negating the many virtues of these products by trading them too much.