Stocks

Where to Trade Stocks Online

Before jumping into stocks, it is important to figure out which platform offers the best solution for trading stocks online. There are some key things to consider.

trade stocks online

Traders new to stock trading online can be exciting, and can free the savvy trader to financial independence.

Commissions

Profitable trades get charged a certain margin by the broker as do the losses. This margin should be as slim as possible. Choose a platform that charges low commissions. As the trading volume increases, the cost of trading also increases and the best broker should lower their margins even further.

Financial Market News

The best online brokers in the business provide streaming news and real time price updates for stocks and options. As long as customers get the most up-to-date information on their platform, they can easily enter into profitable trades. Timely information can mean profitable trades consistently and platforms that offer information regularly should be preferred.

Stock Portfolio

It is important to have access to a large number of stocks and trading instruments so that you never miss the action in any part of the market. When choosing an online stock broking platform, check the number of financial instruments in terms of stocks and options that are available on the platform and other competing platforms. Investors can choose platforms based on the various online reviews available.

Various Accounts Available

Investors should check if the broker provides the type of accounts that you need in case you want specific accounts such as IRA. Some online stock brokers do not offer such options and it would be important to ask or check online before making a commitment.

Payment Method

Finally it is important to check whether you can deposit funds into your account using a visa check card or other card that you use.

Here are the top 5 trading platforms for 2013:

TD Ameritrade

Ranked the top stock trading platform online, the platform offers among other advantages, and easy to use platform loaded with great tools.

E*TRADE

E*TRADE is easy to use, offers various tools on its platform and is available in a mobile version. It also offers great investment advice.

TradeKing

Apart from the attractive low trading commissions, TradeKing is also a darling for the thousands of investors on it who provide trade ideas and research.

OptionsHouse

Options House also has low trade commissions from as low as $3.95 flat fees. Additionally traders get 150 free trades for every new account.

Should I Participate in My Companies Employee Stock Purchase Plan?

Employee Stock Purchase Plans, ESPP are frequently offered as a perk by many large-scale, publicly traded companies. With employee stock purchase plans, companies offer employees the chance to own a part of their future, as well as their place of employment through stocks. An employer will usually offer a discounted price for shares in the company. Often, companies will also allow the payment on the cost of the stock to be deducted directly from a paycheck, eliminating the hassle of paperwork, as well as spreading the cost over a span of time.

Stock purchase plans benefit everyone involved. The employer gets the boost in revenue shares through the employees buying stocks. This allows the company more assets to innovate and expand. The employer also gets to tout the fact that the company is employee owned thus attracting the best and brightest talent who are enticed by the possibility of owning a portfolio. The price of the employer’s stock may also rise if enough of the employees buy enough shares to force a price hike. The employee gets a discounted share in the company, a vote in the share-holders’ meeting, and the pride of owning a portfolio. There is also the distinct possibility that the stock may mature and grow which would net the employee a tidy little profit.

Of course, there are downsides to this form of employee compensation. As a stock can rise dramatically leading to exponential profit, it can also decline sharply eliminating your stock purchase or at the very least rendering them almost worthless. This is a continuing source of anxiety for investors. If your company’s CEO resigns and the stock that you just purchased drops, there is a real potential that you may instantly lose money. If that hypothetical were to happen your company could also lose much money in the blink of an eye as the price of their shares also drops.

This demonstrates the need to be conservative when playing the market, even when it comes to employee stock purchase programs. Only invest in the employee stock program if you truly believe in the company that you work for. If you really believe that they will not only be around in five years but also will be posting a profit, then by all means, invest in your workplace. If you think that management is incompetent and the products are shoddy, then don’t waste your time or money. Other red flag warnings to decline on an ESPP include recent scandals, deficits, and reduction of other benefits. These can be indicators that the company is not on stable financial ground and needs to raise funds.

A good rule of thumb to follow when it comes to the employee plans is this; Would I invest in this company even if I didn’t work for it? If the answer is yes, then go see Human Resources and fill out the paperwork. If the answer is no, then ignore the discount being offered and leave your money in your wallet.

How a Target-Date Fund Works

A “target-date” fund is a mutual fund consisting of typical assets such as stocks, bonds, cash or cash equivalents. Brooklyn Nets The percentage mix of assets is reshuffled automatically by the fund to meet the objective of the investor by a certain future date, such as retirement. The main advantages to a target-date fund are: low minimum investment which provides for greater diversification of outside investments, the fund is managed by a professional fund manager, and there is low investor maintenance or monitoring once the initial investment has been made. As the preselected date approaches, a target-date fund will shift assets towards more conservative investments to avoid or attempt to mitigate any downturns in the economy. This re-allocation is done with no direction or input of the investor but by the mechanics of the fund itself. When selecting a target-date fund, it is important to examine the initial composition of the fund assets. All funds typically have different percentage allocations based in equities or stocks, bonds, and cash. Joc Pederson Jersey The difference between the funds rests in the make up of the allocations. One fund may be made up strictly of domestic equities and treasury bonds, while another fund may have a portion of the equities and bonds based internationally. air max pas cher There can be other differences among funds, such as what type of equities are in the asset mix, whether they are large, small or mid-cap stocks, or if the equities are from emerging markets, or the type of bonds and cash equivalents that make up a portion of the fund. Adidas Yeezy 350 Dames A disadvantage of a target-date fund is that they are not independent. Kanken Mini The target-date fund is usually a compilation fund made from the offering company’s other funds. nike air max 90 soldes This compilation of other funds can lead to higher expense fees depending upon how a fund company computes their charges, the fee for managing the target-date fund may include all or part of the fees charged for the component funds. Nike Paris Hence the investor in the target-date fund is paying a fee for the cost of managing the component fund as well as the target-date fund. nike air max 90 pas cher Whether an investor should or should not invest in target-date funds depends upon how much the investor wants to be actively involved in the management of his or her retirement fund. If the investor wants to be an active participant continuously until retirement, then a target-date fund is not the best investment choice. Nike Air Max 2017 Dames wit Conversely, if an investor does not want to be involved in the direction or management then a target-date fund offers that convenience, however, the more passive investor will need to investigate, compare, and analyze the target-date fund before committing to invest in the fund in order to assure that the retirement goals will be met. An investor must perform due diligence with any fund. nike air max pas cher With a target-date fund the diligence and investigation must be in depth and up front.

E-Trade Review

E-Trade is highly recommended in today’s world of Internet and online stock trading. Many business publications have also given E-Trade high marks. Deciding which online brokerage firm to trust with investment money is a decision that should be researched, and chosen according to the broker’s reputation and services.

What E-Trade Offers Investors

Originally, E-Trade was an online stockbroker business that offered discount executed trades, and that was all. Today, it has become a brokerage firm that offers a full line of services to its clients who are looking to invest their money wisely. E-Trade handles the buying or selling of stocks for its customers, offers expert advice, and up-to-the-minute business news relating to stocks, and a varied list of features.

E-Trade For Beginning Traders

While well-suited to the active, experienced investor, E-Trade is also popular with beginning investors who might have only a thousand dollars to risk. The more active an investor becomes, the lower the commission rates. Becoming an investor is relatively simple. It requires an investor open an account, and fund it with at least $1,000. Once the money is credited to the investor’s account, trading is allowed.

How To Make A Trade

Buying and selling stocks, or making a trade, as it is commonly referred to, is in real-time. A first-time investor simply goes to their personal Accounts page, and follows the directions. Commission rates range from $6.99 to $9.99. An investor will be charged for each trade that is placed. Many times, the commission rate varies, depending on the balance of the trading account, and how often the investor places a trading order during a three-month period. The investor is responsible entirely for the buy and sell orders for stock in the investment account, as well as the choice to buy or sell bonds, futures, options or mutual funds

Products and Services of E-Trade

The services that E-Trade offers online are abundant, and comparable to much larger brokerage firms. E-Trade also offers convenient banking transactions, such as secure savings accounts, aside from trading accounts. The company also offers a wealth of references for investment research. Training seminars, and financial planning services are offered free of charge. E-Trade also offers offices in 16 states throughout the United States, if an in-person visit is preferred.

The Positives of E-Trade

While there is always up-sides and a down-sides to choosing a brokerage firm, one of the pros to using E-Trade is the easy access that common, everyday investors have to foreign markets, and the wide range of investment tools available. Also, E-Trade offers 24-hour telephone support for questions or concerns that can arise after markets close. E-Trade apps for smart phones are also reliable and easy to use.

The Negatives of E-Trade

There are also down sides to E-Trade, being that there is no live chat feature available on the website, and there are more features available to active traders than beginning traders. The fees and commissions are also higher the fewer trades an investor makes, encouraging the trader to risk additional money.