Stupid Sharebuilder

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<RANT>
I been using sharebuilder for a while. I have always liked them, and have convince some friends to sign up too.

I didnt want to make any investments this month, so I turned my investment plan off last week. Look at the bank account today and see that they have charged me the monthly fee for this month. So I write to them ask them to refund the fee. Get a response that "Once payment of the Investing Program fee has been initiated -
either by reaching the beginning of the month or by enrolling - it cannot be
stopped or reversed."

Wrote back, saying that I want the amount refunded, since it is dumb that I should be charged if I already told them I wont be using their services this month.

Their explanation is that the investment plan and the account fee are two different things, and they both need to be stopped if the fee is not to be charged.

Waiting for a response now from them..................</RANT>

Thanks for hearing me out. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> I feel much better now. BTW, the amount involved is a grand $12.

Your $12/month plan includes six "free" automatic investments. You think that just because you didn't use the "free" transactions, you shouldn't pay the monthly fee?

I think Sharebuilder stinks too, but only because they charge you for what you could do for free by buying stock directly from many companies through direct stock purchase programs. Why are you paying $144/year for something you could easily do yourself?

Ok - I'll bite. Can you direct me to a site that will show me which companies allow direct stock purchases. I currently use sharebuilder as well. Also, how do you sell the stock purchased directly?

bolandd said:

<< Ok - I'll bite. Can you direct me to a site that will show me which companies allow direct stock purchases. I currently use sharebuilder as well. Also, how do you sell the stock purchased directly? >>



Start here and here.

I use mellon investor services to buy my microsoft stock through a direct plan.

Still a $2 commission for each buy, but it's 1/2 off of sharebuilder's $4 commission.

selling is done through the same plan, around $11.95 to sell.

Our investment club uses Buy & Hold. They charge $6.99 per month and that includes 2 transactions. Additional transactions are $2.99 each. We are very pleased with B&H and have been with them for 3+ years now.

svallarian said:

<< I use mellon investor services to buy my microsoft stock through a direct plan.

Still a $2 commission for each buy, but it's 1/2 off of sharebuilder's $4 commission.

selling is done through the same plan, around $11.95 to sell.
>>



Mellon is one of the better transfer agents. They link any plans that you have under one account, so you can log in to their website and buy or sell any of the companies that you own through them. Fees are usually set by the companies, so the commission may be different for different companies even though they use the same transfer agent. For example, I buy Heinz and Anheuser-Busch through Mellon and pay no fees. There are all kinds of interesting twists though - if I mail a check, there is no transaction fee, but if I sign up for ACH, they charge me a buck each month. Some plans are the other way around. As always, read the fine print.

I also like Equiserve as a transfer agent. Computershare is one of the worst IMO.

why don't you guys just use Freetrade (no fees on the first 20 trades per month) or someone like Brown that charges $5 for market orders?

gr!

grendel01 said:

<< why don't you guys just use Freetrade (no fees on the first 20 trades per month) or someone like Brown that charges $5 for market orders?gr! >>



I'll be honest - I had never heard of Freetrade. I looked at their information and it looks very interesting. I see some limitations though and reasons why it doesn't fit what I am trying to do with the direct stock purchases. And $5 per month is too steep for what I am doing in my direct stock purchase portfolio which equates to about fifteen trades per month.

Have buy&hold as well. If you don't use it (trade that month) you lose it (monthly fee).



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