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    Buying Individual Stocks

    Hi Y'all,

    I have a Vanguard fund account with a couple admiral fund in there. So, what is the easiest & best way to invest in individual stocks? Should I use a discount brokerage? Or should I just stick with Vanguard? Any help would be great!
    Thanks

    #2
    My brokerage account is with Vanguard and I like them a lot for that purpose. Their fees are reasonable and the web site is easy to navigate.

    I've also had accounts at Schwab and TD Ameritrade and I really hate their sites.

    (Now whether or not one should invest in individual stocks is another matter).

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      #3
      The bulk of our portfolio is with Vanguard but our individual stocks are with Scottrade. I think Vanguard has good service though so if you are just starting out, keeping it all in one place certainly has its advantages.
      Steve

      * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
      * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
      * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

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        #4
        execution is one side of the decision. credit risk is another side. sipc will insure brokerage accounts up to about 500k, including 250k in cash last I checked. the sipc is not a government agency and their finances may not be in great shape to handle a large bankruptcy. some speculate the government would step in to bail them out and perhaps that is true...perhaps not. some brokerage firms take out excess insurance policies for amounts greater than sipc. those insurance companies tend to be very weak.

        so your first line of defense is the brokerage firm itself. if the brokerage is a subsidiary of a bank or something, the bank is not obligated to bail them out. but for small discount brokers they might tend to do so. they take little risk on their balance sheet and offer decent revenues over time. but banks themselves take a fair amount of credit risk. money managers are less risky businesses, so brokerage firms owned by investment advisers might be less risky, depending upon circumstances. so if you start looking into the finances of firms like fidelity, vanguard, trowe price and perhaps schwab, it might be a good place to start. independent firms or firms owned by riskier banks (some regionals, etc.) might need a close look.

        also, diversification among brokerage firms is a key strategy in protecting your assets. if you hold everything in one place and they go down, even if you get everything back you may have to wait some time before you see the cash. your may have an opportunity to see if your creditors/landlord has a sense of humor...
        Last edited by smk; 06-13-2013, 05:16 PM.

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          #5
          Originally posted by firehawkocean View Post
          Hi Y'all,

          I have a Vanguard fund account with a couple admiral fund in there. So, what is the easiest & best way to invest in individual stocks? Should I use a discount brokerage? Or should I just stick with Vanguard? Any help would be great!
          Thanks
          If you have less than $50k with Vanguard and plan on trading more than 25 times (buy and/or sell) per year, I'd look for another broker since they'll charge $20 on all trades after those first 25.

          If you have the $50k or aren't going to trade that much then I'd just stick with them and their $7/trade commission. You could also trade their ETF's for free. However if you trade the same ETF more than 25 times per year they may restrict you from trading that ETF for 60 days.
          The easiest thing of all is to deceive one's self; for what a man wishes, he generally believes to be true.
          - Demosthenes

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            #6
            I have all of my individual stocks with my brokerage account. I like the convenience of having everything in the same place. The trading fees are higher, but I don't trade that much. I buy and hold for the most part, so it isn't that big a deal for me.
            Brian

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              #7
              I use scottrade, have for 5+ years and have been very happy with them.

              Rarely, I have had issues trying to buy stocks and I call my local branch and they will enter my order over the phone at no addtional charge. issues have only been with cheap $2-5 stocks that I was trading in and out of alot, never had any issues otherwise.

              The only thing I dislike is that it takes 2-3 days to get a check mailed from them so you need to plan ahead, for example $20,000 to buy a car. (I wish the local branches could authorize checks) Also with over 5K in an account you can have a debit card which is nice.

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                #8
                I thought about using my retirement broker to open a stock market account for the convenience of keeping everything together, but does it really matter? I decided it doesn't and opened up a TradeKing account because it only costs $4.95 per trade and they offer lots of support and research tools for being such a discount broker.

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