One of the most important investment decisions you will ever make has nothing to do with bonds, stocks or mutual funds. It is choosing the right broker for you. There are lots of companies out there who are offering online brokerage services and many of these are just as good as the conventional ones. Perhaps you may not be a seasoned investor yet. This does not mean that you have to settle for less. You require the services of a high quality, cutting edge, low cost and customer focused online brokerage service. There are lots of factors that you need to consider before you choose an online broker. If you are a novice trader, do not rush for discounts. They are not always good deals. A full service broker is best for an investor who is just learning the ropes and is yet to garner confidence and good knowledge of the market. As you become a more and more sophisticated trader, you can graduate into investing more money.
When it comes to online brokerage services, availability is key. You do not want to try accessing the website to trade only to find it inaccessible or slow. You can try hitting the website at different times of the day especially during peak hours. You can check on how fast the site is loading and verify some links to ensure no technical difficulties exist. Even though we are all lovers of the internet, we cannot all be at our computers all the time. Therefore, it would be advisable to check whether the firm offers other options you may be interested in. such options may include fax ordering, touch-tone telephone trades and the low tech over the phone trades. The broker has to be flexible. As with all other products, the price is not everything. Remember that you get what you paid for. Do not open an account simply because it has the lowest cost of commission. This advertised rates may entice you, only for you to be faced with other costs such as higher fees for limit order and options. In addition, ensure that you look at the minimal balance of the broker. Some will go as high as 10,000$, which is not a light amount.
When it comes to choosing an online broker, the primary thoughts of most brokers will be purchasing stock. However, there is much more than just stock in this market. There are many other assets that you may trade in such as bonds, options, futures and even silver/gold certificates. Some online brokerages also offer financial services such as credit cards and checking accounts. For a novice online brokerage for beginners who are just getting into the market, I would recommend TD Ameritrade or Charles Schwab. Both of these brokers offer high level customer service and abundant online content for educational purposes. In addition to this, the investor is given access to an array of low cost investments which may increase in size as the investor gains experience.