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Author: DanQuisenberry Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 41315  
Subject: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/25/2008 10:42 PM
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Greetings All,

Over the last week I've heard more than a few stories about the difficulties in logging on to certain brokerages online (Fido and TD Ameritrade) and long wait times to get through on the telephone (A friend told me that it took him over forty minutes to speak to a rep at TD Ameritrade on Wednesday). I would love to hear any comments on Fido, TD Ameritrade, or Charles Schwab in particular but also positives and negatives on brokerages that board members use and how they held up during the past week.

Thanks in advance,
DQ
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Author: brewer12345 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31441 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/25/2008 10:53 PM
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On tuesday, I found Schwab's site to be a little slow but still acceptable (got my trades done in timely fashion). On wednesday, I waited a solid half hour on the phone to talk to Schwab about refinancing my mortgage.
Conclusion: anyone who originates mortgages for a living should be doing well this quarter (heresy, I know).

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Author: FatBrainMartian Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31442 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/25/2008 10:53 PM
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I would love to hear any comments on Fido, TD Ameritrade, or Charles Schwab in particular but also positives and negatives on brokerages that board members use and how they held up during the past week.

at least when I used it, there were no issues with TDA's institutional site last week. I can't come up any serious negatives in dealing with them. Far from it - by and large they do a superb job, though there are of course the occasional issues (coding issues, site issues, etc.) that would probably come up in any circumstance with any other broker.

I did have occasional to try to a Fido retail account and noticed unusually long wait times, but they answered within 10 minutes or so. Only problem is that the person who answered couldn't supply an answer to my issue, but she soon enough found somebody who explained what happened in my situation.

note

Long-term, my issue with TDA is probably that they supply only stripped down GS research (two pages max) - though you can pay a bundle for BS research too as an institutional customer. Fido by comparison provides Lehman research which is quite valuable and useful.

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Author: PLynchJr Three stars, 500 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31443 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/26/2008 12:02 AM
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I'm cheap. I use Tradeking. No problems this week or since I joined about 2 years ago.

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Author: TMFKMHinson Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Coverage Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31445 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/26/2008 3:18 AM
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Hi DQ...

I would love to hear any comments on Fido, TD Ameritrade, or Charles Schwab in particular...

I use Schwab, TD Ameritrade, Scottrade and Fidelity. If I had to consolidate down to one, I'd use Schwab. Their customer service is knowledgeable and outstanding, I've never had any trouble with them, they offer everything I need. Their fees are a little higher across the board, but they offer a complete package I'm happy with. I like Scottrade because it's cheap and their customer service is decent. I'm happier dinking and dunking my way into positions over time with them at $7 a trade... but their options for portfolio cash are dismal and their options trading is limited (i.e. can't write puts or probably do a few other things you might be interested in), so they don't offer the complete package in my opinion. At $7 a trade though, they serve a purpose. TD Ameritrade is fine... I just like Schwab a little better. I've never been that happy with Fido, but it's mainly their interface I don't like. I've never had any functional problems. This week I didn't do a lot, but I did close out a position to raise a little cash, and my trades on TD Ameritrade and Schwab went through quickly and without a hitch.

Hope that helps a little.
kevin

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Author: PCScipioA One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31449 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/26/2008 11:19 AM
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Have used Schwab and E*Trade for years. The former wins hands down for customer service; reps are much, much more knowledgable. I don't trade much or urgently (6-12/mo), so I can't compare in that regard.

I'd have consolidated with Chuck years ago, but I do banking as well and E*Trade has better savings account rates and money transfer capabilities. Of course, you need to keep any E*T Bank accounts under FDIC limits. ;-)

cheers
skip

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Author: jaroman Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31450 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/26/2008 12:51 PM
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I had no problem at Fido or Scottrade. I dont do option trading, so I am happy with both.

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Author: MIDD85 Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool Global Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31451 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/26/2008 1:59 PM
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I use the Flagship service with Vanguard and they have been easy and fast. I mostly buy electronically which is easy and efficient but they pick up the phone immediatly and have offered good advice.

Peter

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Author: Hohum77 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31452 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/26/2008 2:40 PM
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I have two accounts with TD Ameritrade-

On Tuesday (1/22) - I could not log in to one account. After a couple of timed-out attempts, I called the 1-800 number, and got response that indicated one could place orders via a broker for the online price. Never placed an order figuring it would take too long i.e provide account info, authentication, place order, verify order. Now, I could log into the TDA Izone, their cheaper trading service- must be a separate system.


Rest-of-week no log-on problems

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Author: tzuri One star, 50 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31453 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/26/2008 3:47 PM
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No problems with TD Ameritrade institutional site on Tuesday.

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Author: BenHacker Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31454 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/26/2008 7:43 PM
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TD Ameritrade Retail - no problem Monday night or Tuesday morning

Interactive Brokers - lots of timeouts both Monday night (from 10pm to 2am) and Monday morning. I got through eventually but it was lame.

OptionsXpress/BrokersXpress - no issues Monday night.

Ben

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Author: aliasjb1 One star, 50 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31460 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/27/2008 7:51 PM
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I was watching the ticker about 15 minutes after the market opened on Wednesday, and a stock I had just sold at a significant loss (jaso) was down below 50. I decided to buy back in, but the site froze. Twice I tried to get back in, at the same time calling to make a trade and getting a message saying that the phone system was overloaded and they were sorry. By the time I could get to the site again, the stock was up at about 58, which is where I had sold it.

After the trading day was over I called, and they gave me 50 free trades over the next 90 days, which is not of much value since I usually do about 7-8 trades/year. At any rate, you get free trades when Ameritrade screws up.

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Author: RaptorD Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31495 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/29/2008 4:50 PM
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.
I use Schwab, TD Ameritrade, Scottrade and Fidelity.

Tsk, tsk, Kevin, talk about a name dropper.

I would divide up my Scottrade account and use all those brokers too, but so far none of them will let me start with $5.

I get it, you're rich. :)

Dan

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Author: TMFKMHinson Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Coverage Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31496 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/29/2008 7:08 PM
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Ha! Too funny Dan.

I get it, you're rich. :)

...says the man who's retired to the one slaving away in his tiny, gray cubical right now contemplating where it all went wrong... just like he does every day... and most evenings. :(

I take it your vocation hasn't changed since this morning?

"What do you do for a living?"

[RaptorD] I invest for myself and I'm, uh, <whisper> I'm a RETIRED builder.


Sheesh! ;-)

kevin

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Author: RaptorD Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31499 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/29/2008 9:50 PM
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.
Ok, um, we don't talk about that, Kevin. Besides, I love having rich friends! I admit it, I retired about 9 years ago at 46. Now we shouldn't have to bring that up again for oh, about 9 years. Plus, you can play the age jokes on me from now on!

You got me. I'll give you a pass this time, my friend. Extend the same courtesy to the raptor, eh? :) Besides, I've been considering starting another business or going to work somewhere for quite awhile. A few more years of "considering" and I might have to get off my butt and actually do something about it.

Dan, poor, poor Dan

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Author: TMFKMHinson Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Coverage Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 31503 of 41315
Subject: Re: One More on Brokerages Date: 1/29/2008 11:23 PM
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Yikes! I review that last post I put up here, and it sure comes off as a heck of a lot more touchy about things than I really was. Perhaps that pesky bold formatting didn't help. The tone was unintentional, as was my name dropping (although to review... I use Fidelity, Schwab, Scottrade... oh wait, nevermind). Funny post you put up, though I'll likely be prone to defensiveness about being called rich even when I am someday. ;-) Public school roots and all I guess. Anyway, I assure you my intent was much more light-hearted than I came off. Hopefully I'll be wrapping it up here at the office shortly, and I'm booking a day of vacation tomorrow as the mountains are supposed to get 18 inches or so overnight. I'll be doing my best to shake my frazzled and apparently overly-touchy nerves with a morning full of knee deep freshies and the mountain to myself I hope.

I can extend that courtesy to the raptor... I'll be happy to replace such talk with age jokes any day. Although, wait... I may not have gobs of room to talk. But... I think I have just enough. Nice. :)


kevin

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