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Getting Started

Getting Started
Categories

 - Introduction
 - Picking a Firm
 - Opening an Account
 - Types of Accounts
 - The Importance of Title
 - Placing an Order
 - Order Duration
 - The Entrance Fee
 - SIPC


   

 

 

 


Picking a Firm

 

Because of the repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act and other safety nets that were instituted during the depression of 1929, in today’s environment, many financial service companies have overlapping products and divisions under the umbrella of their corporate parents. Here’s a starting point for the types of firms in the marketplace. Keep in mind that the firewalls separating the product offerings are now very vague.

  • Banks – Pure banks take in deposits and originate loans. The difference between what they pay depositors and what they charge for their loans, less expense, is their profit. Currently banks can, and often do, offer a complete range of competitive products across all financial services segments. Banks like Citigroup are truly one stop financial shopping centers.   
     
  • Brokerage Firms – They facilitate the trading of debt and equity investments. Their services include investment advice, research, money management, online trading and a menu of banking and insurance products, such as check writing, loans, margin and annuities. Excluding investment banks, there are two types of brokerage firms:
     
      • full-service brokers
      • discount / online brokers
         
  • Mutual Fund Companies – They provide professional investment management by pooling the capital of individual investors.
     
  • Insurance Companies – Insurers offer a complete range of investment and insurance products, including solutions for: Insurance, Retirement, Investing and Estate Planning needs. Their annuities are popular investments for income orientated investors.  
     
  • Real Estate Investment Companies – REITS are companies that specialize in real estate and mortgage investments.
     
  • Private Hedge Funds – Private investment management companies usually focus on institutional investors and wealthy individuals.  

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