ShareBuilder Review - An Ideal Broker For The Buy And Hold Investor?

No ShareBuilder review is complete without mentioning its status as a self-directed online brokerage investment and trade firm under the ING Direct umbrella of companies. Keep in mind that ING Direct is known in the industry for its innovative approach in placing otherwise sophisticated money management means into the hands of the average Joes and Janes. As such, we expect ShareBuilder to make investments and trades in the stock market simple, affordable and, of course, profitable with the right tools.

The most notable feature of the ShareBuilder service is its automatic investing feature, which is the direct result of the site's previous history as part of a dividend reinvestment program (DRIP). Basically, you can schedule the automatic transfers of a pre-set dollar amount from your bank account into your ShareBuilder account ostensibly to build your present portfolio of stocks. You are then slowly but surely building your wealth even when you are busy with other things. This makes Sharebuilder the ideal online broker for Buy And Hold investors.

If a ShareBuilder review will be based on such an automatic investment feature, then the company is already a winner in our books. This is because such feature opens the way for other benefits of which the most notable is that you can actually purchase stocks on a partial basis! Not only will you be building up your wealth but you are also incurring lesser costs while you are at it, thanks to the magic of dollar-cost averaging.

Well, if you are more comfortable with buying shares on a full price instead of using the automatic transfer service, you can also trade in real time. You may also skip the self-directed feature by engaging the services of an experienced trader through phone-in transactions.

Of course, any review of a brokerage firm will be incomplete without mention of its fees and commissions - this ShareBuilder review is no exception. Anyways, ShareBuilder gives its clients two pricing options, namely, Basic and Advantage.

  • The Basic option is obviously geared toward beginner and infrequent investors with its features including no monthly subscription fees. If you choose to trade on automatic mode, each transaction costs just $4 while real-time trade will set your pockets back by $9.95 per trade.
  • The Advanced program requires a monthly subscription fee of $12 but you will also be getting 12 free automatic investment trades on it. Additional trades cost $1 per trade while real-time trades are also cheaper than that for Basic members - just $7.95 a piece.
  • Other rates include $19.95 on mutual funds online and phone trades as well as $1.25 per contract (Basic) and $0.75 per contract (Advanced) on options trading. Of course, it is not only the comparatively cheap rates that this favorable ShareBuilder review is based on.

We also love it that ShareBuilder offers its clients various helpful research tools obviously to help the individual manage his wealth in a better manner. We can mention the Stock Finder, ETF Finder, Mutual Fund Finder, Fund Compare Tool and Portfolio Builder, all of which helps in easily tracking down good investments, effectively managing your portfolio and surely building your wealth.

In conclusion, to say that this ShareBuilder review leans toward the favorable is an understatement. We love how ShareBuilder actually helps us grow our investment portfolio and, consequently, our wealth almost in automatic mode.