.........I have never bought anything thru an electronic broker for fear of problems that you describe............and believe me you're not the first to post such a message on this board. I use the same broker that has helped our family for two generations and whose firm [Alex Brown] we've been with since 1905. I might pay a few bucks more in commission, but because BRK is so expensive I want piece of mind with the purchase. It's startling to me to hear of people mailing off big chunks of hard earned money to a place they don't know, to a person they've never met. I'm sure your problem will work out and you might want to consider making friends with a full service broker.......I really like mine.....Good Luck
I was reading monday's (8-3) edition of IBD and noticed that the Nicholas Fund's has as one of its 10 largest holdings (4.9%) 3,959 shares of BRK.a. They also have listed as a recent "top sell" 40,813 shares of BRK.b.
On the same page is the summary of 5 funds in the vallue cap index (Sequoia, Legg-Mason, FPA Capital, Davis NY Venture, American Century Income). They have listed the 20 largest positions of funds in the Value index. BRK.a is one of the listings and also General Re out of 20 holdings (also MCD, J & J, AOL, LU, IBM, Chase, Dell, Fanni M, Wells-F, Ford, and a few lesser known). Speaks pretty well of BRK.a. Wonder why the sell of BRK.b by the Nicholas fund????
From the '92 Chairman's letter: "The frictional costs of trading - which act as a major "tax" on the owners of many companies - are virtually non-existent at Berkshire."
I have traded with Brown & Co for years. I speak to a trader and place the order. They repeat it back and wait for you to say "that's right". It's recorded in case there's any questions later. I understand you wanting piece of mind, but you may want to consider what the compound frictional costs are doing to your long term net results. Don't guess, put it in a spreadsheet and look.
By the way, I have only had one problem with Brown & Co in over 5 years. I gave the order, they repeated it back wrong, and I said "that's right". They ended up splitting the cost or the error with me, which I thought was more than fair. I listen much closer now.
Greg,asdfdf,Tastychap,Ftex,..........thank you for sharing your experiances on discount brokers. I'm going to take your advice and do some "comparison shopping" on fees. I pulled my BRK file to check just what I was actually paying. My last purchase was 170 shares of "B" @ $2245. My broker charged me $223.94 commission plus $3.00 in "handling fee". This came to $1.34 a share, which I thought was pretty good.......especially for something as valuble as a share of BRK. Apparently from Greg's post I could have done this for $29.00 thru Shwab which is a huge cost savings. I'll have to check it out..............In the words of Tastychap........."May the WEB force be with you guys"...............BoboP.S. Talk about being a cheapskate ! ............as I sit here typing this I've got a hole in my right boot that my little toe practically sticks thru. I've got dirt and grease all over me from working out in the barn all morning trying to get a 40 year old Allis Chalmers tractor to start ...............and I'm on the computer trying to figure out how I can save a buck on the most expensive stock there is !! The beat goes on...........
Why would you want to pay a full service broker to buy Brk shares for you. Pay a full commision, when you made your own decision to buy Brk.. You say you like your Broker...I guess you do. If you want to give him money for nothing.
I use Waterhouse ...I pay $12 commision on-line...Never had a problem with execution....If I should have a problem I can either call the 800 number. Talk to an account officer,,,Or I can go by the nearest office and talk to someone there.. Have not had to do so....But have those options availible.
Meanwhile, the money I am not wasting in commisions I use too buy more stock like Brk...