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Re: Stock and ETF brokerage costs plunge

Posted: Thu Oct 10, 2019 8:33 pm
by Tyler
ochotona wrote:
Thu Oct 10, 2019 6:45 pm
Fidelity... Now zero commissions!
Boom! I'm really happy to see that. And really glad that I wasn't tempted to switch funds recently just because they didn't have commissions. Being slow to make changes paid off. 8)

I imagine that BlackRock probably got a lot of business through Fidelity because they had a deal to not change commissions on iShares ETFs. Now that the playing field is leveling, I wonder if this will eventually force them to also lower their ER's to be more competitive with some of the other ETF providers like Schwab.

Gotta love competition.

Re: Stock and ETF brokerage costs plunge

Posted: Fri Oct 11, 2019 6:01 am
by ochotona
Double checked, no MOC on regular Schwab website. Also, there was a bug which caused the fractional shares to not trade, they took care of them for me by hand the next day, at the same price. Not great, but whatever.

Re: Stock and ETF brokerage costs plunge

Posted: Fri Oct 11, 2019 11:18 pm
by InsuranceGuy
Fidelity seems to be winning on this front given that they already had $0 commissions for 500+ ETFs. Plus Fidelity doesn't sell your order flow to the highest bidder, Schwab made $130m+ by selling order flow last year.

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/10/11/fidelit ... -fees.html

Lastly, Fidelity and Vanguard both offer cash sweep options of 1.5%+ while Schwab, TD Ameritrade, and E-Trade pay <0.2%.

Re: Stock and ETF brokerage costs plunge

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 7:43 am
by ochotona
1.4 cents per share ding. That sucks. Glad I found out how to do MOC. The cash thing sucks.

Re: Stock and ETF brokerage costs plunge

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 10:15 am
by InsuranceGuy
Fidelity has been fairly transparent on what the difference in executed price vs bid(sell)/ask(buy) price is for each trade. My own trade history is spread across various brokerage/IRA/401k accounts with holdings varying from $50k to $600k. The average price improvement is $5.80/trade over 11 trades in the past 12 months.

Given that trading costs have been pretty low before this change ($5-$10) many brokerages can make nearly all of this fee income back by selling their order flow unless they were double dipping to begin with.

Re: Stock and ETF brokerage costs plunge

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 11:07 am
by ochotona
InsuranceGuy wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 10:15 am
The average price improvement is $5.80/trade over 11 trades in the past 12 months.
What does it work out to on a per share basis? Anything like 1.4 cents per share?

Everyone going to zero commissions really starts putting the focus on smaller and smaller and finer and finer points about order flow, customer service, online user experience, do you like the cookies & coffee they serve in the local branches, etc. Here's a summary of the war in my brain. I don't know what to do. Maybe move my two actively traded accounts to Fidelity, and leave the quiet ones at Schwab. $25 hostage fee.

Screenshot 2019-10-12 at 11.31.43 AM.png
Screenshot 2019-10-12 at 11.31.43 AM.png (72.87 KiB) Viewed 7467 times

Re: Stock and ETF brokerage costs plunge

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 11:38 am
by InsuranceGuy
ochotona wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 11:07 am
What does it work out to on a per share basis? Anything like 1.4 cents per share?
It took me a few minutes to download my history, but it is 0.6 cents per share.

I do agree that we are starting to talk about nickel and dimes and not huge dollars, my point was only that in many cases for an average investor can be the similar to previous trading commission costs.

EDIT: Nice comparison chart. From my perspective: I have never been to a branch so never had a cookie (that may change now that I know), the Fidelity website seems to work well for me, I agree on the 2% Fidelity card and personally use the Alliant CU cash back card that has no ATM/foreign trans fees. I have no vested interest in any of the brokerage houses, I use Fidelity and have used E-Trade, Merrill, Schwab, and Vanguard in the past.

Re: Stock and ETF brokerage costs plunge

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 1:21 pm
by pugchief
ochotona wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 11:07 am
InsuranceGuy wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 10:15 am
The average price improvement is $5.80/trade over 11 trades in the past 12 months.
What does it work out to on a per share basis? Anything like 1.4 cents per share?

Everyone going to zero commissions really starts putting the focus on smaller and smaller and finer and finer points about order flow, customer service, online user experience, do you like the cookies & coffee they serve in the local branches, etc. Here's a summary of the war in my brain. I don't know what to do. Maybe move my two actively traded accounts to Fidelity, and leave the quiet ones at Schwab. $25 hostage fee.


Screenshot 2019-10-12 at 11.31.43 AM.png
1. Depending on how much cash you keep in your sweep account, you can make back that $25 from the interest differential in short order.
2. If you are moving enough assets, Fidelity may reimburse any exit fees. Doesn't hurt to ask. I recently had a $75 account closing fee at e*trade reimbursed by Merrill Edge as part of the deal.
3. You can often score huge cash bonuses when moving larger sums: current offers

Re: Stock and ETF brokerage costs plunge

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 1:27 pm
by ochotona
InsuranceGuy wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 11:38 am
EDIT: Nice comparison chart. From my perspective: I have never been to a branch so never had a cookie (that may change now that I know), the Fidelity website seems to work well for me, I agree on the 2% Fidelity card and personally use the Alliant CU cash back card that has no ATM/foreign trans fees. I have no vested interest in any of the brokerage houses, I use Fidelity and have used E-Trade, Merrill, Schwab, and Vanguard in the past.
So the momentum strategies I use in my VP have 2.5 trades per year on average. This would imply that Schwab makes from me, on average, about $770 per year in lost price improvements. If I run around that by sending 99% of the trades through MOC, and do next-day clean-up with regular market buy orders (I sell an ETF using MOC, but only buy 98% of the replacement ETF using MOC so as not to run out of cash), they're down to 1% of that, or $7.70 per year. I can live with that. Even if it's 1.4c per share not 0.6c per share, that's $18 per year.

But I still might move!

Re: Stock and ETF brokerage costs plunge

Posted: Sat Oct 12, 2019 10:34 pm
by thisisallen
Fidelity will reimburse the fee that another brokerage may charge you to transfer funds to Fidelity. Just need to show Fidelity your statement from the other company confirming the fee/charge.

Re: Stock and ETF brokerage costs plunge

Posted: Sun Oct 13, 2019 5:30 am
by ochotona
thisisallen wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 10:34 pm
Fidelity will reimburse the fee that another brokerage may charge you to transfer funds to Fidelity. Just need to show Fidelity your statement from the other company confirming the fee/charge.
Where do present the statement? Online or at a branch?

Re: Stock and ETF brokerage costs plunge

Posted: Sun Oct 13, 2019 9:37 am
by sophie
I don't have a Schwab account so I can't speak to that brokerage's features in this area, but a few additions to the Fidelity positive list:

1) A cash account with an ATM card where you are reimbursed for all ATM fees. (disadvantage: the sweep pays almost zero interest, but on the other hand it is FDIC insured for a ridiculously large amount, like $600K).

2) A brokerage account that can be firewalled from long-term investments and that can do everything that a normal online checking account does except for ATM withdrawals - and you can set the sweep to a money market fund. Pairs well with the cash account. Elegantly gets around rules limiting savings account transactions that force you into a dual bank account structure.

3) An completely-investible HSA that neatly avoids having to deal with two institutions, logins etc.

Their website software is the one real negative of Fidelity. Glitches are common and it is often awkward to use. I hope they are planning to update it.