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INDIA INFOLINE LIMITED

1. INTRODUCTION1.1 ONLINE TRADING IN INDIA:Indias main capital market regulator has approved online share trading in a move designed to boost the countrys equity markets. The body also announced that individuals and foreign investors would be allowed to invest in Indian shares up to 5% of a companys total equity. The head of the securities and exchange board (SEBI), D R Mehta, announced internet share trading could take place in India within the existing legal framework-although cyber laws need strengthening. However, online trading would still have to be done through brokers. Mr. Mehta said the necessary guidelines would be issued to various exchanges and brokers, who could then decide when they wanted to start. A SEBI panel submitted a report on internet stock trading in December recommending procedures and other details for domestic stock exchanges. The countrys biggest exchange- the national stock exchange (NSE)-has got the necessary software, and is currently testing interconnectivity with brokers systems. The Bombay stock exchange (BSE) should be ready currently in the process of developing a central web server who can be accessed by all brokers registered with the exchange. According to some analysts, the introduction of internet trading should boost business volumes and further fuel a bull run on the Indian markets. However, the BBC, s Sanjeev Srivastava in Bombay says other analysts are not so optimistic. He says they believe that the countrys internet infrastructure is still not advanced enough, and that effective online trading will be difficult until bank, brokers and exchanges are all successfully interconnected. India is believed to have about 30m domestic investors at the moment.

REGIONAL INSTITUTE OF CO-OPERATIVE MANAGEMENT,BENGALURU-70 1

INDIA INFOLINE LIMITED

HISTORY OF STOCK BROKING:To understand how brokerages compete contemporaneously with the advent of internet related technology, it is necessary to look briefly into how the securities industry has changed in the last three decades. In 1974, charles schwab changed the competitive landscape of the securities industry by becoming the first discount brokerage. In 1982, Tradepils, the predecessor of E*trade came to life after its founder, bill porter envisioned a world where everyone would soon own a computer and trade stocks through them (Wyatt). And in 1984, Charles schwab begins offering on-line trading service. One half of todays 1.5 million on-line accounts belong to schwab (Young). Online trading initially caught on slowly. But the crash of 1987 caused the trading volume to virtually dry up (Wyatt). Next, enter the cyberbrokerageswho then changed the competitive landscape to full service brokerages versus cyber brokerages using internet technologies. E*trades early success with internet based trading forced traditional brokers into the internet game(Lux on the net) the result is three distinct intra industrial rivals who differ significantly to the extent in which internet technologies is part of the distribution channel. Full service brokerages are reluctant to offer internet or online trading. Kizman Reeves of Merrill lynch suggested that internet trading is not for everybody and the internet will merely lynch force full service brokers prove they really do offer comprehensive financial advice (Weasel internet joy.). Firms similar to prudential, Smith Barney, and Merrill lynch are positioning themselves as reliable and secure places to visit. They cannot compete or find it quite difficult to compete with online discounts on price (Deck). Full service brokers tend to charge five to six times more in commissions than discount brokers (Hoffmann). Customers are attracted to them because their web sites offer savings strategies and advice, retirement fund calculators and college fund formulas (Decj). For them, web sites can be used to guide visitors to regional offices and toll free telephone numbers to connect with staff members (Deck). Merrill lynch&co. dont allow customers to conduct electronic trades on their sites. REGIONAL INSTITUTE OF CO-OPERATIVE MANAGEMENT,BENGALURU-70 2

INDIA INFOLINE LIMITEDHowever, in the first quarter of 1998, Merrill lynch & co. will offer web based trading. The trades must be channeled through an investment advisor though (Hoffman) this strategy reflects the position of traditional brokerages who have high fixed cost. They are trying to keep customers in their traditional relationship. Merrill lynch views internet Technologies has a way to tighten customer relationship nevertheless, Merrill finds itself struggling to find the appropriate mix between there commissions driven sales structure and customer demand of internet trading services Smith Barney is looking for ways to leverage their work force via internet technologies such as e-mail. As the potential to increase productivity. But some say e-mail would decrease destroy of other wise undermine client broker relationship however, in the opinion of smith Barney there would no negative effects upon the client broker relationship. With cyber brokerages, internet based trading is the main channel for distribution. There are about 30 well known on line brokerages (stir land). A visit to internet site rivals 53 companies offering online trading business_and_ecconomy / companies/ financial services/ investment services/brokerages/ online trading) sea appendix a to view this listing these new entrants to the business of stock broking are promoting bold but captivating message to potential customers.they are asserting customers are being ripped of by the traditional wall street firms (lux the search for) e*trade ran another ad with a kid sticking his tong out that said boot your broker while yet another ad read dont let high commissions bite your assets. (qt dib Wyatt). These advertisements are apparently working. Cyber brokerages, such as E*trade and Lombard brokerage, are attracting technically proficient investors who in the past, have relieved on discount for low cost trade executions (Hoffman). E*trade estimates 70 percent of its customers are defecting from discount brokers while 20 percent defect from full service brokers. The cyber brokers are following self-service approach as advocated by C.H.lovesick and R.F. young. The service process is enhanced by having the customer via the internet, a greater role in the production (research and execution of trades for example) of the service. In general customers like self-service it puts the customer in control (chase etal 118) when it is taken into account the shift that customers have taken and demanded over the last twenty or more years toward self service (examples include automatic teller machines, self service gas stations, etc.), it REGIONAL INSTITUTE OF CO-OPERATIVE MANAGEMENT,BENGALURU-70 3

INDIA INFOLINE LIMITEDis no surprise that customers like and want to have the option of internet based trading. On the other end of this spectrum is the full service brokers who view allowing the client to take more control will result in many mistakes. In the middle is schwab who has a large share on trades conducted online. Yet, the firm still offers hand holding to minimize mistakes and is not taken the extreme approach of the customer being heavily involved in the production of the service. These deep discount cyber brokerages, who also are called deep discounters, have contributed to an evolution in the financial services industry. Discount brokers are being compelled to offer more research and value added services similar to those offered by the full service brokers (Hoffman). The low cost structure or these deep discount firms allows them to have a competitive advantage over traditional brokerages and traditional discounters. They are able to attract customers away from traditional discount brokerages because they can compete on the basis of price. To gain some insight in the disparities in the price of a stock or option trade among the various brokers from full service brokerages to deep discount brokerages, visit the following internet site: http://www.intrepid.com/~robertl/commissions-pricer1.html the site calculates the price of a trade among various brokerages with you inputting the stock price and number of shares traded. A report is generated showing the cost of the trade with many different brokerages listed by both alpha and by ascending commissions cost. See appendix barter visiting this site, it is very easy to see why online trading is increasing given the piece advantage. The lower price of trades is a direct result of the lower cost structure of firms offering internet trades. However, this low cost structure advantage is also a disadvantage. Competition from within the deep discount brokers is fierce. For example, E*trade has dropped it pieces at least seven times since 1992(Wyatt). Low barriers to entry result in difficulty in maintaining a competitive edge among the deep discounters (Wyatt).of utmost importance to their ability to compete on price is the low cost structure they enjoy because of technology online trading allows and information dissemination allows stockbrokers their time more productively. They are feed from the time consuming task of information and quote tasks. The paper trail is shortened dramatically. Online trading leads to greater profits resulting from improved efficiencies (prins 81). The internet technology results in the virtual firms who do not need branch offices. The connectivity of clients with their brokers enables brokers to communicate more easily with their clients (Weisul internet joy). Cost efficiencies are not limited to just brokerages offering online trading. The REGIONAL INSTITUTE OF CO-OPERATIVE MANAGEMENT,BENGALURU-70 4

INDIA INFOLINE LIMITEDfull service brokers can enjoy cost efficiencies as well. Some firms to distribute research use the internet. Thus, they sav

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