Oct 2, 2019

Commission fees fall, taking stock prices with them

Data: FactSet; Chart: Axios Visuals

After seeing its stock price plunge 26% in Tuesday trading, brokerage firm TD Ameritrade announced it would offer free stock, ETF and options trades, starting Thursday.

Threat level: Investors are worried that the race to the bottom, now clearly in full swing, will blow a hole in the profitability of online brokerage companies. Shares of the companies already were struggling this year.

  • Charles Schwab — the largest of the publicly traded brokers with 12 million customers — made the same offer to clients earlier in the day, sparking a massive selloff among the top brokerage firms.
  • Interactive Brokers cut fees to zero on stocks and ETFs last week.

By the numbers:

  • Schwab's stock fell 9% on the day.
  • E-Trade's stock dropped 16%.
  • Interactive Brokers' stock lost 9%.

Of note: TD Ameritrade makes a particularly large (25%) share of its revenue from commission fees, according to analysts at investment bank JMP Securities.

Go deeper

Apple shakes off its critics as stock hits 52-week high

Photo: Philip Fong/AFP via Getty Images

Apple's stock rose 1.35% Thursday, more than doubling gains by the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq and touching a 52-week high.

Driving the news: The strong gains came despite criticism of the company for pulling apps from its store in recent days to appease Chinese authorities.

Go deeperArrowOct 11, 2019

IPO misery

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Once upon a time, going public was a fun and joyous thing to do. In the late 1990s, young companies would raise money in an IPO, there would be an enormous first-day pop, everybody would start talking about you, and the combination of new money and free PR would turbocharge your business.

Flash forward: Today, it's hard to find anybody who's happy with way that companies transition from being private to being public. Even the institutional clients of the large investment banks, who can get significant allocations of coveted IPOs, are feeling the pain. Companies like Uber and Peloton have never traded above their IPO price.

Go deeperArrowOct 3, 2019

The stock market is overreacting

Stocks took a nosedive for the 2nd consecutive day on Wednesday and the Dow and S&P fell for the 4th time in 5 sessions. But the U.S. Treasury market experienced a far smaller move, as it has been factoring in manufacturing weakness and slowing job growth for months.

Why it matters: The bond market's limited movement in the face of historically weak manufacturing and deteriorating employment data suggests the worst may be over, analysts say.

Go deeperArrowOct 3, 2019