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Visit Online Stock Trading Site Before Committing

Aug 17, 2007
You can learn a lot by visiting an online stock trading site before opening a brokerage account and joining in the investing fun. Most companies who host an online stock trading site will allow visitors to peruse their site to ensure it is a good match between an investor and an online brokerage.

The first step is to decide if you need a full-service online stock trading brokerage or a discount service. Full-service brokers have their time and place but note that in the current competitive environment discount brokerage services tend to offer almost the same facilities as full-service firms. Make sure that you weigh all options before deciding which one is right for you.

You will be able to determine what resources are available, including research and help in making decisions, as well as the timeliness of the trades you may want to make. You will need to determine if the quotes on the site are in real time or delayed. Some online stock trading sites offer delayed quotes with which the price you buy or sell a particular stock may be different at the time of your transaction.

Accepting open orders is also important if you expect a price fluctuation throughout the day. For example, the ability to put in a buy order for a set number of stocks, if the price falls to a certain amount could be important to you later on. The same would be for a sell order placed with an stock trading website online. You want to make the deal but only if the price is what you specify.

Service Justify Trading Costs

By looking through an online stock trading site you can determine if the costs of making trades through the brokerage is worth the service they are offering. With competition really heated among the many online brokerage sites, prices have dropped considerably with many offering trade rates of $9.95 or less. Some sites offer one-and-a-half percent rate, with a maximum of $9.95. There is some full-service online stock trading sites that are part of a large brick-and-mortar brokerage that charge up to $30 per trade, justifying the charge by the myriad of services offered.

Be prepared, however as that per trade cost is for both ways of the deal. You will be charged when you buy the stock and you are charged again when you sell it. Each separate stock bought or sold is considered one transaction, even if you put the orders in at the same time. For example, you submit an order to purchase ten shares of each, of three different stocks, you will be charged the trade cost, times three. When you sell those three company's stocks, you are charged again, whether you made money or not.
About the Author
For more information on getting started in stock trading online Check out Online Stock Trading Site at http://www.online-stock-trading-4u.com
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