Selling ESPP stocks with a limit order without fee

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ThisJustIn
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Selling ESPP stocks with a limit order without fee

Post by ThisJustIn »

My new ESPP stocks vested recently in Fidelity, and I want to put a limit order to sell them at a fixed price. I see that Fidelity stock trade fees are $4.95. Is this correct? Does this fee apply to limit order for ESPP stocks as well? How can I avoid this fee? Is there another platform I can move these ESPP stocks to, and then set limit order without any fee? I think Robinhood used to do that, did anyone try a similar transfer to Robinhood, or any other platform, and then traded stocks for free in this other platform?
Dottie57
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Re: Selling ESPP stocks with a limit order without fee

Post by Dottie57 »

Are you kidding?
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ThisJustIn
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Re: Selling ESPP stocks with a limit order without fee

Post by ThisJustIn »

Dottie57 wrote: Sun Apr 08, 2018 12:49 pm Are you kidding?
No
Jack FFR1846
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Re: Selling ESPP stocks with a limit order without fee

Post by Jack FFR1846 »

Look in your ESPP documents. I think you'll find that you have to pay something more like $25 to sell your stocks. ESPPs are not typically set up like a low cost broker account. I know that this is how my ESPP works using eTrade.
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codedude
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Re: Selling ESPP stocks with a limit order without fee

Post by codedude »

The $4.95 fee applies to selling ESPP stocks at Fidelity, whether as a limit order or as a market order.
toast0
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Re: Selling ESPP stocks with a limit order without fee

Post by toast0 »

Nobody likes fees, but $5 is a lot less than what some of us were paying to sell ESPP shares 10 years ago. Transferring these assets to another brokerage to save a small commission is probably not worth the time it takes, both in terms of your time, and time in the market. If you're planning to sell the shares as soon as feasible to diversify, waiting a week for a transfer (if it goes smoothly), is probably not great. Cost basis reporting is probably going to be even worse than normal for ESPP if you transfer the stock, and you'll need to figure out how to report a disqualifying disposition if you sell before the holding period for that, since the new broker probably isn't hooked into your company's payroll dataflow.
quantAndHold
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Re: Selling ESPP stocks with a limit order without fee

Post by quantAndHold »

Just sell them at Fidelity. $4.95 is a good price for stock trades, and a very very good price for ESPP sales.

By the time you get the shares transferred somewhere else, you will have wasted a bunch of time on phone and email trying to figure out how to do the transfer, then why the transfer is taking so long, and where the heck is my stock. By the time it gets to Robinhood, the stock will have dropped more than $4.95. And then at tax time, something will be messed up, and you’ll waste more time on the phone sorting things out.

The last time I had ESPP shares, it was $25 plus $0.125/share to sell.
Yes, I’m really that pedantic.
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ThisJustIn
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Re: Selling ESPP stocks with a limit order without fee

Post by ThisJustIn »

Jack FFR1846 wrote: Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:07 pm Look in your ESPP documents. I think you'll find that you have to pay something more like $25 to sell your stocks. ESPPs are not typically set up like a low cost broker account. I know that this is how my ESPP works using eTrade.
Just checked and verified that the fee is 4.95.
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ThisJustIn
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Re: Selling ESPP stocks with a limit order without fee

Post by ThisJustIn »

@toast0, @quantAndHold, @codedude, @Jack FFR1846: Thank you for explanation. I did sell RSUs with a similar fee earlier through Morgan Stanley StockPlan Connect. But I never sold ESPPs, and I get ESPPs every quarter, so $4.95 fee every quarter looked still a non-negligible amount. But I guess it was more expensive in the past, and I will just live with the $4.95 fee.
SlowMovingInvestor
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Re: Selling ESPP stocks with a limit order without fee

Post by SlowMovingInvestor »

One more point that may decide the issue -- sometimes it's not even possible to move the shares out for a certain period of time (the time during which selling the shares would be a disqualifying disposition). The company gets a tax benefit if you sell early, so they want the brokerage to keep track of it, and so they restrict you from moving it out.

The brokerage account attached to an employee stock plan may have some limitations that ordinary accounts do not, and this is typically one of the restrictions.
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