BB&T Corp. has introduced an Internet trading service for its discount brokerage clients. The service, rolled out Thursday, allows clients of the Winston-Salem, N.C.-based bank's brokerage unit to make stock and mutual fund trades.
Clients will also have access to delayed quotes on most U.S. and Canadian stocks, U.S. bonds and mutual funds, market statistics, and company profiles and financial news. "A lot of our customers for pure convenience have been requesting it," said Darren Earnhardt, assistant vice president and manager of the discount brokerage, which is part of BB&T Investment Services.
Banks have voiced concern recently about competition from discount on- line brokerages like E-Trade and Morgan Stanley Dean Witter's Discover. Mr. Earnhardt said he would not define the move as a defensive one, but added that the bank does not plan to aggressively market the service.
The service includes on-line calculators to help clients plan for retirement and college and lets them access their brokerage account balance and see a three-month history of their trading activity. Customers may access the Internet trading site via a link from BB&T's Web site at www.bbandt.com.