Managing an Online Brokerage Account

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When managing brokerage accounts online, a person gets to see a great deal of data, including what they own and capital gains and losses. Find out why it's important to print out a list of what is owned through an online brokerage account with help from a portfolio manager in this free video on money management and personal finances.

Part of the Video Series: Investing & Money Management
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Video Transcript

Do you have an accountant at a stock brokerage firm or bank? Hi this is Roger Groh, at Groh Asset Management, if you do you may be able to access that on-line. And today we're here to talk about how to mange your accounts on-line. In the end it means you get to see a lot more data more often than you did in the past. You can look at what you own, and usually capitol gains or losses, maybe even your cost spaces. Right on the website to help you look at the tax side of things. And for planning, they give you all sorts of yields and rates and alternatives in different products usually, also that you could buy or look at to figure out what direction you would like to go. All that means more responsibility for you though, because you are going to be making the investment decisions in that type of account. If you don't feel comfortable doing that it's okay, hire a pro. How? Well you can always go the mutual fund route, or the money manager route. So on your on-line account just login, and you can see what you own and pretty much buy or sell whatever it is that you would like, depending upon the type of investments that the website will let you buy and sell. You still have to be concerned with tax, and the website may provide you with a total of net realized gains and losses, or even capital gains divided into short and long term. Depending on how sophisticated the website is. The website probably will not tell you about changes in currency that you could recognize, to provide losses for yourself. Last but not least, always make sense to print out regularly, say monthly, maybe quarterly. A list of what you own, and maybe even a running total of what's happened in that account. Just stick it in an envelope and save it, and the next time you print one, throw the old one away. That way if the website crashes or who knows what, you will have a piece of paper saying what you owned. Remember, that has happened before. And it will probably happen again in the future. It happened in 1987, and it happened in 2001. Where computer systems were not reliable, and you had to go back to old paper in order to determine what was still in accounts. Last but not least for buying or selling, well you're going to have to make those investment decisions, but remember on most website you can trade away. Meaning your account is held in one bank or brokerage firm, but you can actually tell them to buy or sell somewhere else. If you want some help call us. I'm Roger Groh, at Groh Asset, thank you very much for spending time with me.

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