Charles Schwab? What say you?

Discussion in 'The Tiki Bar' started by Gofirstclass, Oct 19, 2019.

  1. Gofirstclass

    Gofirstclass Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 20, 2010
    Tri Cities, WA
    1995 550 Sedan Bridge,
    1981 Boston Whaler 130 Sport,
    CAT 3406C's, 580hp.
    Back in the day, before I became just a boating bum and was working as a financial advisor, I had a partner. When I retired I opened the type of account where he has full trading authority and makes all the decisions about what to own, what to trade, etc.

    For this he charges me a small amount and for that I don't pay any commissions. Of course as the account balance goes up, so does this pittance.

    Recently the major investment trading companies dropped their online trading fees so now, Schwab, E*TRADE and a couple of others are offering FREE line trades.

    I've talked with my partner about this and the firm he's with does not seem likely to offer any online trading. Zero. So there's no way this company is going to go to zero commission trading.

    I'm considering moving my account to Schwab and doing all my trading myself. Now I do not consider myself a "trader". Never have been, likely will never be. But the ability to go online (or on an app on my phone) and trade into or out of a stock, ETF or many other classes of investments whenever I want and not pay any commissions is intriguing.

    Does anyone on here use Schwab as their investment company? If so, what has your experience been?

    Now what I'm NOT looking for is for people who trade with other firms to chime in and let me know how your firm does for you. No offense, but that's not what I'm asking for. I'm only interested in what Schwab clients have experienced.

  2. Jaybeaux

    Jaybeaux Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    Jan 3, 2016
    Upper Potomac River
    420 Sundancer 2004
    Naught On Call
    Cummins 6CTA-8.3's with V-Drives
    9KW Onan Genset
    My stock club uses Schwab and we are "benefitting" from the $0 online trades. Now, we are still stuck with our trading accumen. Ha! Some good, some bad.

    On a personal and more serious note, I have done hedge funds where they get 20% of every dollar they make for you. No "round tripping" if you know what that means. I liked it as they had skin in the game. They didn't make money unless they made you money. I've also done a system where they get 75 basis points a year (paid out quarterly) based upon the value of the account at the time. In this model they get the benefit of the round trip (they make money both on the upside and the downside).

    Whichever model suits you, the one thing that I have come to realize is that the older I get, I want to put the onus on someone else to manage my money. I now have a better idea of what knowing what I don't know. That's just me.

    Blueone and Chris-380 like this.
  3. Sea Gull

    Sea Gull Well-Known Member

    Oct 19, 2006
    2019 Maritimo M64
    Volvo D13-1000
    Schwab works as promised, but that doesn’t seem to be your real issue. Schwab was only charging a nominal fee anyway, so fees went from <$20 to zero. So what?

    You seem to be saying your manager charges you a percentage of assets under management (quite common these days) and say your manager was never charging commission (a bit more unusual). So, changing to Schwab doesn’t save you a penny in commissions, but severs your relationship with your ex partner and his/her “in the game” expertise.

    Decide if you want a manager, then decide if you want this manager. You may decide you want to manage your own account, but it has nothing to do with saving $12 per trade.
  4. BillK2632

    BillK2632 Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Jun 25, 2009
    Lake Norman, NC
    1999 185 Bowrider,
    Mercruiser 4.3, Alpha I
    I use Schwab for both investments and banking - Schwab has their own bank and provides totally free checking, even rebates ATM fees. You can open a brokerage account which comes with a checking account online for free. As far as their online trading and investment systems, I like them, works just as good, maybe even better in some respects as my previous accounts with Merrill Lynch / Bank of America did. Schwab does not do everything for free - yes basically all of your trading is $0 now, plus they have a large family of no load mutual funds and ETF's (not just Schwab funds, there are several 000 funds). They have online tools to help you build/select portfolios and their robo advisor Schwab Intelligent Portfolios (my daughter is in this and it seems to work pretty well). I manage things myself with the help of a Schwab advisor. You can meet with a Schwab advisor, by phone or in a branch and all of this is no fee. They do have various levels of fee based advice / portfolio management - fees and eligibility for these programs are based on investable assets. Also more complex investments - bonds, options etc have fees associated with them. I am not an investment adviser to any extent (no licensing etc), but I am in IT and have worked in the retirement space (401k plan administration) my whole career - in the past the firm I was with was a Schwab institutional client - they trusteed our 401k assets and we traded through them. So from a technical perspective I know a little bit about how things work.

    My advice would be to call them or go into a branch.
    techmitch likes this.
  5. boatman37

    boatman37 Well-Known Member

    Jun 6, 2015
    2006 Crownline 250CR. 5.7 Merc BIII
    Previous: 1986 Sea Ray 250 Sundancer. 260 Merc Alpha 1 Gen 1
    5.7 Merc BIII
    I have been day trading options for about 6 years. I started with Schwab but left them about 5 years ago just because ETrade had better charting for fast in and out trades. Their platform isn't the best but if you are looking for longer term trades it is sufficient. I used Schwabs 'StreetSmart Edge' platform. I currently use TDA and they are free too now. That fee was pretty nominal anyway. I paid $4.95 for stock trades and only .50/contract for options. To me the free trades doesn't make a difference to me and I make several trades a day. If you only make 1 trade a month those fees don't mean a thing.
    Trading isn't easy so be careful.
  6. Golfman25

    Golfman25 Well-Known Member

    Sep 12, 2009
    I have used schwab for 20 years. Never had an issue. Always been responsive. I think you can give your advisor access as well.
  7. Gofirstclass

    Gofirstclass Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 20, 2010
    Tri Cities, WA
    1995 550 Sedan Bridge,
    1981 Boston Whaler 130 Sport,
    CAT 3406C's, 580hp.
    Thanks for all the good feedback. My former partner is managing my assets using what's called a "discretionary" account which simply means he has full trading authority.

    The asset management company he and I worked for has set up several different portfolios based on risk tolerance. So he's just basically following the guidance of the portfolio I'm in, not doing the research himself, and for that I'm paying a few boat bucks a year.

    I like the guy but c'mon, I'm paying him to do what I have the experience to do myself. The biggest reason I've stuck with him thus far is that I didn't want to be paying commissions.

    I'm not an options trader and won't be doing a lot of in-and-out trades. I'm more of a "if you buy good investments it doesn't hurt to hold them" kind of a guy. But when I do buy something I almost always put in sell orders to take profits and prevent losses.

    I think I'll pay a visit to the local Schwab office to see what I think.

    Thanks again for the feedback.
  8. Carpediem44DB

    Carpediem44DB Well-Known Member PLATINUM Sponsor

    Aug 18, 2015
    Sanfransico Bay area
    2006 44 DB Sedan Bridge Raymarine gs165 w Quantum HD Radar
    Achilles 350 Dink
    Nick Jackson Davit
    Cummins QSC 8.3 500 HD
    Our financial assets are with Schwab in their Private Client program. No trade commissions but we do pay a quarterly management fee which is below traditional rates due to the size of the account. We speak quarterly and approve all trades. We love the service and the online access to the account is great. Its not always easy to figure out actual performance at a glance with out needing what seems like a masters degree in finance but our advisor is only a phone call away and has always been able to answer any questions. We were with Principal and Wells Fargo prior to Schwab and felt nothing but ripped off.
    Carpe Diem
  9. sbw1

    sbw1 Well-Known Member

    Oct 10, 2006
    West Michigan
    This is listed in my signature
    This is listed in my signature
    IMG_4230.JPG It really gets down to performance net of all fees. Once you set the benchmarks that you measure your advisor's performance against, you can see if your results are equal to or better than the markets in which you are invested. Doing as well as or better than the market over a complete investment cycle takes time, talent and discipline. I oversaw a large pension fund for our company (as a member of the investment committee) for 34 years. There were times when the market was terrible and it was almost impossible to make any money. Time in the market takes care of the bad years if you are smart and patient. It is a fact of life that most of us do not get better at making these decisions as we age. I'm now of an age where I don't want to manage any money but have put safeguards in place to ensure it is done the right way. In my opinion, looking at trading fees is just one piece of the puzzle. You need to do as well as or better than the benchmarks net of all fees associated with being invested. That is the true measure of how efficiently you are handling your portfolios.
  10. fwebster

    fwebster Well-Known Member TECHNICAL Contributor PLATINUM Sponsor

    Oct 6, 2006
    Middle Tennessee ; Panama City Beach, FL
    1996 450DA
    3116 Caterpillars
    About 80% of our non-real estate investments are with the leading commercial brokerage firm in Nashville. They have a retail division to handle personal brokerage business. It is plain vanilla, you trade and you are charged a commission, but pay nothing based on assets. The good part for me is that the broker I am with handles several huge retirement funds and stays on top of the market so I benefit from his and the firms research. Depending upon what I am trading, the commissions are usually discounted, and are many times zero, because they tack my trade onto one they make for a commercial account

    This is a great firm, I know their people and trust them, but with retail commissions, it limits frequent trades because your in & out cost is sometimes $2.50-$3.50 on a per share basis. I'm not a day trader, and I do trade options and the high in/out cost makes it hard to do profitable frequent trades. Also, the Nashville firm only allows online research, no trading. Therefore, Schwab fits a need for me.....I can do my own research, and trade equities and options online without worrying much about the cost. I love Schwab's online portal and ease of use. I have no complaints other than the fact that you get a different broker every time you call...but that isn't a real problem because I am not with Schwab for hands one personal services anyway.
  11. Gofirstclass

    Gofirstclass Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 20, 2010
    Tri Cities, WA
    1995 550 Sedan Bridge,
    1981 Boston Whaler 130 Sport,
    CAT 3406C's, 580hp.
    One thing I want to look at is their online trading platform. I'm not gong to be calling someone for their advice--that's what I did before I retired. I also want to look at their research screens to see what's available.

    So I'm not worried about getting a different broker every time I call. I may never call them unless I have a specific question about my account.
  12. Golfman25

    Golfman25 Well-Known Member

    Sep 12, 2009
    I have found their street smart platform interesting. sounds like it will suit your needs perfectly.
  13. JVM225

    JVM225 Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 8, 2008
    Farmingdale, NY
    2002 410 Sundancer, Monaco Edition.
    3126 Cats.
    That’s the type account I have with another brokerage and it works well for me at this point.
    Something to consider when deciding if a no frills account with free trades is the right way to go:
    For many years I handled things on my own but as I got older I faced the reality of my mortality and although I understood investing my wife has no head for it at all. If something were to happen to me she would be lost and would need solid advice and guidance.
    Now I have a long term relationship with a professional and his staff. We speak regularly. If I don’t call to ask about something specific for a month or so they’ll call me to run things by me. They understand my priorities and goals and after having done it solo for decades I think they’re doing as well or better for me than I could do on my own.
    If you have a spouse or partner like mine, then it may pay to spend a little bit for peace of mind.
    On the other hand:
    If you’re significant other is as knowledgeable as you are then a no fee no frills account may be the better option.
  14. JimT

    JimT Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Jul 7, 2009
    Charlotte, NC- LKN
    2010 330 Sundancer
    T-350mags w/BIIIs & Axius, 5.0 kw Kohler
    Fidelity has also gone to no fee trades.
  15. boatman37

    boatman37 Well-Known Member

    Jun 6, 2015
    2006 Crownline 250CR. 5.7 Merc BIII
    Previous: 1986 Sea Ray 250 Sundancer. 260 Merc Alpha 1 Gen 1
    5.7 Merc BIII
    Day traded AAPL calls this morning. Paid .64 and sold in partials at .71, .77, .81 and the last 1/4 at .81 again just now for 21% winner. I love day trading:). Using TDA thinkorswim these days
  16. The Bill Collector

    The Bill Collector Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Jun 2, 2008
    Tacoma, WA
    1998 450 Sundancer, Achilles dinghy
    3126 Cat's
    I moved my portfolio to Scottrade years ago after paying $60-80 per trade with a huge unnamed company... Scottrade has now been bought by TD Ameritrade and it was pretty seamless. Trading is done online with ease and all of your buy/sell triggers can easily be set up...

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