Messages: What Members Are Asking On-Line
by CI Staff
Monthly Brokerage Charges
A suggestion to follow the truly superior Product Comparison report of on-line discount brokers (January/February 2004 Computerized Investing): Please urge all members to call the broker(s) they select before opening an account and review as thoroughly as they can the precise costs of the type of trading they plan to do.
For example, Interactive Brokers, mentioned in your article, does not charge one cent per share as you state. Rather they have a flat $10/month fee against which they subtract one cent per share per trade up to $10 each month.
Every other broker in your chart whom I called also had variations to the charge(s) you published. In some cases these changes could be substantial. (InvestIN Securities, for example, has a fixed charge of $29.95 per month against which costs are discounted.)
Thank you for a wonderfully informative article. The list of names alone justifies the work you did.
CI Editors Respond:
Thank you for bringing these issues to our attention. It is always good advice to confirm prices and fees before signing up for a service. We confirm the data in our comparison survey with every broker prior to publication, but are not able to report all aspects of fees. The comparison focuses in on commission costs, but it seems that more brokerage firms are establishing a minimum monthly charge that serves as a credit against trading commissions. We will study how to address these fees in future brokerage comparisons.
Guide to Computerized Investing
T here was reference in the Message Board to something identified as the 14th Edition of Computerized Investing, and an article comparing Fundamental Stock Screening Systems.
Can you advise the date of this issue?
CI Editors Respond:
The AAII used to publish an annual Guide to Computerized Investing. While the last edition was printed in 2000, we have transformed the book into an electronic guide on our Web site. Different sections of the on-line guide are updated as the areas are addressed in Computerized Investing product comparisons.
Subscribers can access the guide by clicking on the CI Guidebook link found within the CI Links box of the Computerized Investing Web site. The Guide is modeled after the comparison articles that are featured in each issue of Computerized Investing. It begins with an overview of investing, investment software and information services, as well as a discussion of hardware needs to help you get started. Subsequent chapters cover all areas of investment software including:
- portfolio management;
- fundamental stock analysis;
- technical analysis;
- mutual fund analysis; and
- financial information services.