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Internet in our lives

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Internet in our lives

A new day on Wall Street. The Internet is changing the way the brokerage industry does business. Today more and more investors are electing to trade via the Internet and avoid contact with a broker all together. Are the days of the large full service broker over or will there be a compromise between full service and self-direction? Has the rapid advancement in information technology helped the brokerage industry or hurt it? What role will IT have on the future of trading? Just a few years ago all trades were done by calling a brokerage and talking to a broker who usually tried to push some hot stock and charged you a large sum to purchase the shares you wanted. The 70's gave way to a new era of discount brokers. The discount brokers provided the means to make trades at a significantly lower cost but at the expense of less informative and directed services. These discount firms utilized new computer technologies to process trades and opened up investment opportunities for many that would not have previously considered purchasing securities. With improved IT capabilities and the introduction of the Internet the discount brokers were able to open the door even further by reducing trading costs and developing user friendly platforms for investors. The Brokerage industry is one driven by quality customer service and high profits. Investors want to maximize there investments at a reduced cost but still receive the highest level of service and information available. In the past investors were restricted by the amount of control they had over their investments, brokers made recommendation, pushes, and did the actual purchasing. Today with the addition of the PC and online capabilities investors can choose what, where and when they invest. By utilizing online resources investors can perform the research and analysis that was once primarily done by brokers. This new technology is having a dramatic effect on the way brokerages operate. The once small discount brokers are utilizing the Internet to take over a whole new market segment and the larger full service brokerage companies are rallying to add online services. This paper will explore these effects and how the industry is responding as well as address the questions raised in the opening. Selling securities via the Internet ...

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