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Subject:  Re: Hate your broker? Date:  2/4/1999  4:51 AM
Author:  Fooltocry Number:  9886 of 50510

Firstly, thanks to those who have shown an interest. I will try to keep this tread alive as long as possible, because just maybe someone from the press or a discount broker may be reading and do something positive. We can only hope! I also posted a link from the E-trade stock folder after their recent system failure. Maybe some more interest will be generated from that one.


The list so far with additions:

Requirements for the Ideal On-line Broker

1. Trade time < 1 minute for market orders.
2. Real-time quotes. Up-time 99% during trading hours.
3. Phone service. Answer < 10 'rings'; connected to live person < 5 minutes.
4. Globally orientated. (See note 1 below)
5. Commissions .....
6. Extra fees....
7. Application waiting list. (note 2)
8. Realtime accounts update. (3)
9. Easily printable information. (4)
10. Full fee disclosure.
11. Quicken/Money interface.

(1) Globally orientated.
I put this one in to highlight the fact that most on-line brokers do not seem to cope very well with non-US residents. Anything from no support at all (ScotTrade) to legalese that is tailored specifically to the US clientel. The Ideal On-line Broker should accept and handle investors from all over the world, and provide adequate information on the relevent tax issues (withholding, CGT). Enrollment forms should be tailored specifically to the investors circumstances.

(2) Application waiting List.
A good suggestion this. In order to cope with rapid client growth, no new accounts would be opened until the TIOB is able to cope as a whole, not just the computer systems.

(3) Realtime Account Updates.
A tricky one this. When do you update the account? When the trade has been entered or when it has been executed? I'll leave this open to discussion.

(4) Easily Printable Information.
This seems to be a feature requested often, perhaps mainly by those who have been burned by brokers by not having hard-copy proof of deals. So be it. Your choice: print, or log locally for later off-line printing.

Feel free to add your own explanations (especially for 4 & 5). I don't want to do all the work!

A good start, but more interest would be good. If you too believe this thread can help, advertise! Point others this way! Nominate for post of the day! Support the cause! Create your own "Ideal On-line Broker!

Keep the ideas coming!
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