To buy and sell stocks efficiently with our services, you will first need to open and fund an account at a brokerage. There are a dozen good discount brokerages, including Charles Schwab, TD Ameritrade, Fidelity, Etrade and ScotTrade. We like Interactive Brokers because its no-nonsense software platform is easy to use, customer service is good and commissions’ charges are among the lowest.
Our orders will consist of a security (stock or ETF) name, symbol, buy or short instruction and recommended entry limit price. Very often we will also supply a target and stop.
In this trade-entry "ticket," you can see on the top line that the order is for 3M (MMM) stock (as opposed to an option or futures contract). The last price is $137.40, and in this case the initial C means the market is closed. Type in the number of shares you wish to trade in the Quantity field; any whole number 1 or larger is acceptable. Put the recommended limit price in the appropriate field. This is the maximum price you are willing to pay. Then choose a Time in Force, which can be GTC, for "good til canceled," or Day, which means it expires at the session close. Finish by clicking the Create Order button. You will then have a chance to review the order. Remember to finalize your order the Transmit button. If you later want to cancel the order, click CXL on the order