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Author: imdajunkman Three stars, 500 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 35357  
Subject: Re: Brokers, Cribbage, & Mosquitoes Date: 7/6/2006 4:50 PM
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To Ken (and anyone else who is suffering the high commissions and wide spreads that bond buyers endure).

Bonds are an institutionally dominated market. The figure I keep seeing is that only 2% of all bond buys or sells are done by individuals. Until we bond customers have greater clout (the way that stock buyers and sellers most certainly do from their sheer numbers), we will continue to suffer disparities, if not abuses.

As far as I know, nobody beats Interactive Brokers on bond commissions and spreads. But how many of you have made an effort to set up an account with them? Until they have a loyal and growing customer base, there is no reason for other brokers to compete for your business by lowering their prices. They are depending on your inertia so they can continue to do "business as usual".

Complaining feels good, but you need to vote with your feet. Mind you, IB isn't perfect. They don't as yet trade Treasuries, nor Agencies (with rare exception), nor even the whole of the secondary corporate market. Bonds are't yet a "main menu" item for them, likely because the potential customer base is so small. But throwing some business their way to the extent that you can helps to grow their bond trading capabilites and benefits all of us eventually. It's a matter of having faith that individual action is important. By acting now, those who follow can benefit.

Charlie



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