The recently released ASX Australian Share Ownership Study provides a number of interesting insights into share ownership and behaviour amongst retail investors.
It probably won’t come as much of a surprise to many investors but the study found that over the past two years there has been a significant increase in online trading through online brokers. With brokerage rates as low as $14.95 per trade, it is really no wonder this method of purchasing shares is growing in popularity. Commonwealth Bank’s (ASX: CBA) Commsec platform and ANZ Bank’s (ASX: ANZ) Etrade platform account for a significant percentage of the online broker market and while they don’t split out their earnings from these divisions, one would expect these two banks would have captured a reasonable share of the increased business.
Interestingly, there was also an increase in the number of investors purchasing shares through full service brokers too, with the percentage going from 30% in 2010, to 26% in 2011, and up to 31% in 2012. After a torrid few years for full service brokers such as Bell Financial Group (ASX: BFG) and Wilson HTM (ASX: WIG) in which they have dramatically underperformed the S&P/ASX 200 Index (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO), perhaps there is some light at the end of the tunnel for them.
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