Rate your Online broker – Survey results

We’ve received a positive response from our first online survey in which visitors have been asked to rate their online broker. According to respondents online trade execution (3.52) has received the best average rating for all online brokers ahead of Price (3.42), Speed (3.28), Overall service (3.25) and Added services (3.08). Ratings were from one to five, five being the highest.

Although survey participants are generally happy with the execution of trades over the internet, the speed of service delivered scored less well. Many of the comments offered were directed towards the inability to get through quickly when placing phone orders and slow confirmation of orders made. Other comments were directed towards the sophistication or otherwise of the services provided by online brokers in terms of portfolio management software, charting and access to real time market data.

Overall, online brokers scored worst in terms of added services. As access to market data (real time or 20 minute delayed), company profiles and charting tools become freely available, online investors are demanding improvements in the quality and usability of these services.

The current discounting war has turned attention back to price. The individual investor should consider the specific services they require to trade online and how these services compare over a range of online brokers. Those online brokers unable to match the recent reduction in brokerage for online trades offered by Quicken, Comsec, Westpac, Your Prosperity and HSBC will be looking to differentiate themselves based on the quality of service they offer. This will ensure continued improvements in added services in the near future.

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