Do you have a passion for investing in stocks and researching the markets? Do you have the ability to enlighten and persuade people about market opportunities and get them excited and interested in those opportunities?
And would you like to start a business of your own, becoming your own boss and probably creating employment opportunities for others? If YES, then starting your own stock brokerage firm would be a smart decision for you.
A stock brokerage firm can either be institutional or retail, or even both. An institutional stock brokerage firm caters only to agency clients, including money managers and other brokers. And it belongs to a stock exchange as a floor broker.
A retail stock brokerage firm, on the other hand, does not have direct access to the stock exchange and trades only through member firms. A few retail brokers are actually floor brokers, though, which enables them to offer their customers prices that are only slightly different from national bid and ask prices.
Stock brokerage firms generate their revenues through commissions and fees charged to investors who wish to buy and sell stocks. If you are already feeling excited at the idea of starting your own stock brokerage firm, then read on to learn the guidelines for starting on a successful note.
Starting a Stock Brokerage Firm – Sample Business Plan Template
1. Gain experience
Before starting your own stock brokerage firm, you must first become a stockbroker and have years of experience as a stockbroker. This is necessary because you need to have full understanding of how the stock market works and how investment is done. To gain this experience, you need to work as a stockbroker for a good number of clients, with good results to show.
Aside helping you start your own stock brokerage firm on a bright note, having enough experience as a stockbroker boosts customer trust and serves as a strong selling point for your stock brokerage firm.
As with any other business, writing a business plan is germane to the success of your stock brokerage firm. A comprehensive business plan serves as guide on how to successfully get your firm off the ground and how to run it effectively after its launch. It will also present your business to third parties funders, such as investors and lenders.
Your business plan will detail your mission statement, target market, market analysis, startup and operation costs, products and services, marketing strategies, and so on.
3. Register your firm
You need to register your business with the appropriate regulatory authorities and organizations. Unless you intend to conduct business solely within a state, you must register with the Securities and Exchange Commission in your country by filling the appropriate forms for broker-dealer registration. You will also be required to join one or more self-regulated organizations, which check the activities of stock brokerage firms.
4. Have your partners, managers, and employees registered
You also need to have your partners, managers, and employees registered with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority or equivalent regulatory body in your state or country. Even if your stock brokerage firm is already registered with the regulatory body, you still need to ensure that all persons associated with your firm and effect securities transactions on its behalf are registered with the same body.
5. Choose your operation model
You can choose to either become a floor member of the stock exchange or sign an institution brokerage account with another brokerage firm that is a floor member. A stock exchange usually has limited number of seats, so new brokerage firms interested in becoming floor members will have to wait until there is a vacant seat for sale, or lease a seat from a current floor member.
Some other brokerage firms that do not plan to become floor members of the stock exchange may choose to conduct their brokerage business through another brokerage firm.
6. Set up your infrastructure
Arrange your platform and infrastructure for receiving and routing customer orders. These include a website, a stock trading software package, and computer servers. Nowadays, all stock brokerage firms grant their customers access to online account management and online trading of securities.
Depending on the intended size and complexity of your stock brokerage firm, you should choose a trading software and other infrastructure that suits your needs.
7. Start operations
After successfully completing the previous steps, you can start meeting potential investors and enlightening them about the benefits of trading stocks through your firm. “Boast” of your experience as a seasoned stockbroker when trying to sell clients. And hire stockbrokers who have strong marketing skills. But be sure that you deliver on your promises.
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