Positions at discount brokerages

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Arizona Bay's picture
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Joined: 2006-07-27

Does anyone know anything about positions at branches of discount brokerages like Fidelity?  I hear they have a position called Investment Representative, which segues into a role as a Financial Planning Consultant.  Seems to not have the potential for as much cash flow as a wirehouse, but more stability and not as much hardcore prospecting involved. 
Any insight is appreciated.

The Judge's picture
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Joined: 2006-06-06

I know people that have gone down that road, and in every case they've never stayed long.  If you are simply looking to collect a paycheck at a job, I guess you could consider it- versus another 9-5 job in another industry.
In most cases, you are expected to sell.  And remember the types of clients you are/will be dealing with: generally do-it-yourselfers who are often very cost-sensitive.  Fine- there's always a market for companies to service these clients.  Still, the last thing you want to be doing is trying to shove every new-offering closed-end fund to people to try and make a living.  Or at least to exceed your numbers.
Consider going the bank broker path if you are looking to build a practice, yet still have significant support in lead generation.  More importantly, choose one that has a well-established and developed platform, not just mf's and annuities. 

StLbroker's picture
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Joined: 2006-08-02

Don't do it.  unless you are about to give up the industry altogether.

NASD Newbie's picture
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Joined: 2005-08-01

When I opened my account at Fidelity--about six months ago--I sat and talked with the fellow who was handing me the paperwork and pointing at where I should sign.
He said that he had been there less than two years, had a 7 and 66. He also indicated that he rarely talks to people at a level that could be construed as giving advice.
I asked if he was "my broker" and he said no--that they don't have individual clients.
I asked how he was paid and he said, "Not very well" with a smile.  I didn't push for a number.  He said that they're paid a base plus a bonus based on the profitabilty of their branch.  Then he added, "You're a high up guy where you work so maybe you'd understand.  The rumor is that with his bonus our branch manager makes about 100,000.
As Da Judge has said, it's really just another 9 to 5 job, but one that requires a Series 7.
That said, if you're a kid who has about zero chance of talking somebody into writing a large check or signing an ACAT to bring a good sized account over spending time at Schwab or Fidelity could be time well spent.  You pick up a Series 7 and do no harm to your U-4.
And along the way you get to smile and talk about the market with a lot of geezers who come in with a million dollars that they want to use as the SMA for selling naked straddles--like me, more or less.

Rugby's picture
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Joined: 2006-06-06

NASD Newbie wrote:
 And along the way you get to smile and talk about the market with a lot of geezers who come in with a million dollars that they want to use as the SMA for selling naked straddles--like me, more or less.

You may want to look at Interactive Brokers, Options express or thinkorswim.com for this type of options trading.  I have a friend who trades alot of options.  Costs, software, and executions are likely better than Fidelity.

NASD Newbie's picture
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Joined: 2005-08-01

Rugby wrote:NASD Newbie wrote:
 And along the way you get to smile and talk about the market with a lot of geezers who come in with a million dollars that they want to use as the SMA for selling naked straddles--like me, more or less.

You may want to look at Interactive Brokers, Options express or thinkorswim.com for this type of options trading.  I have a friend who trades alot of options.  Costs, software, and executions are likely better than Fidelity.

I'm paying $8 per stock trade and $8 plus .75 per contract for options--I have a debit card to access my funds if I need them, my paycheck is direct deposited and there is an office a few blocks away.
I really can't understand why everybody doesn't do business with Fidelity or SChwab.

compliancejerk's picture
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Joined: 2004-12-03

NASD Newbie wrote:Rugby wrote:NASD Newbie wrote:
 And along the way you get to smile and talk about the market with a lot of geezers who come in with a million dollars that they want to use as the SMA for selling naked straddles--like me, more or less.

You may want to look at Interactive Brokers, Options express or thinkorswim.com for this type of options trading.  I have a friend who trades alot of options.  Costs, software, and executions are likely better than Fidelity.

I'm paying $8 per stock trade and $8 plus .75 per contract for options--I have a debit card to access my funds if I need them, my paycheck is direct deposited and there is an office a few blocks away.
I really can't understand why everybody doesn't do business with Fidelity or SChwab.

newbie,
Just HOW small is the firm you work to allow you have accounts elswhere.  I know it's not a regulatory requirement but most firms require all pro accounts to be "in house", for the ease of supervision ... oh I forgot you make your own guidelines.

NASD Newbie's picture
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Joined: 2005-08-01

compliancejerk wrote:
Just HOW small is the firm you work to allow you have accounts elswhere.  I know it's not a regulatory requirement but most firms require all pro accounts to be "in house", for the ease of supervision ... oh I forgot you make your own guidelines.

There you go clerk, running your mouth without your brain being in gear.

compliancejerk's picture
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Joined: 2004-12-03

NASD Newbie wrote:
compliancejerk wrote:
Just HOW small is the firm you work to allow you have accounts elswhere.  I know it's not a regulatory requirement but most firms require all pro accounts to be "in house", for the ease of supervision ... oh I forgot you make your own guidelines.

There you go clerk, running your mouth without your brain being in gear.

Yeah but your gears were stripped long ago.

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