In February, Edward Jones became the last of the major retail firms to launch an online service for clients.
In addition to showing daily account balances, Jones also makes more than 300 research reports available online to the clients who sign up for its AccountLink service, says Bill Broderick, the firms director for online marketing. If research is available on a stock in a clients portfolio, the account statement will include a research report icon, he says.
Jones is limiting access to the roughly half of its clients who have a money market fund at the firm in order to control the volume of initial sign-ups, Broderick says. But the firm intends to make the service available to all of its clients at some point. There will be a fee for the service, but no pricing has been set. Well have an early bird special--no fees through July, Broderick adds.
Jones brokers will not be notified when their clients download research reports. Will clients avail themselves of research, but execute their trades elsewhere?
Clients can do that now with hard copy reports, Broderick says. We cant control what they do, but we think its important that they have [the firms research], he says. Weve designed it to be the most convenient ... for the client.