Why Choose Shearman, Ralston?
Shearman, Ralston Inc (SR) was founded in 1976 under the partnership
of Doug Ralston and Tom Shearman. The idea for a discount brokerage firm
was born out of an important change in stock market regulations. Up until
May 1, 1975, commission rates had been set by the NYSE. With the end of
fixed commission rates, Doug recognized an opportunity to make trading
and investing accessible to the retail investor. The old set rates had put the
individual investor at a disadvantage against larger investors, who had
access to other markets and so firms began to offer low rates.
Almost 40 years after the end of fixed rates, new systemic changes
resulting from the “great recession” have indelibly reshaped the financial
world. Once again, the individual investor can be dominated by both big
investors and the big brokers. Ironically, the lowering of commission rates
that was supposed to help retails investors has become a way to disguise
the exploitation mega-brokers like Schwab and E*Trade effect. While rates
are lower, online trading has opened a new more dangerous advantage to
the mega investor and mega broker. We are now seeing large institutions
like mutual funds and pension plans getting unfair advantages at the ex-
pense of retail investors, even substantial investors like our own clients. In
the face of such trends, SR continues to defend the retail investor.
With the advance of technology, whereby large institutions trade massive
volumes of shares and options contracts, the faith and understanding an individual investor may have in the market can be thrown into doubt. So-called Flash Trading, where some large investors get to peek ahead of others at the markets in individual stocks, is but one example of the de-leveling of the playing field. Our priority is not to offer cheap rates for the sake of luring in customers; we truly believe investing is the best way for individuals to grow and retain earnings on their money. SR's decades of experience allow us to keep our clients well-informed, which is the best way to make sure we find what you're looking for. Be it short term or long term, margin accounts or retirement accounts, we can help navigate the sometimes uneven path towards your financial goals. Here at Shearman, Ralston, we don’t just build portfolios. We build relationships.
Photo: 17 Battery Place in New York City's Financial District, previously home to Shearman, Ralston Inc.