• Report: #326470
Complaint Review:

Sharebuilder Securities

  • Submitted: Wed, April 16, 2008
  • Updated: Thu, January 14, 2010

  • Reported By:canton Georgia
Sharebuilder Securities
1445 120th Ave Ne Bellevue, Washington U.S.A.

Sharebuilder - Sharebuilder Securities Scammed by Sharebuilder stay away Bellevue Washington

*General Comment: Research, Knowledge, and Due Diligence

*Consumer Comment: What to do

*Author of original report: you missed the point there guy

*Consumer Suggestion: What did you think the margin account was?

*Author of original report: They dont return calls, hang up on you and threaten.

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Sharebuilder has taken my 3 deposits totaling $6600 for investing and turned it into a debit balance due to something called margin trading.

I was told over the phone by one of their supervisors what that was. They knew I was brand new and they wanted me to try margin. They gave me money to use to buy stocks and I was to pay it back if the stock hit zero otherwise just pay 9% a year on what I borrowed. Sounded good to me.

Well my stock went down big time and then I was being emailed every day to send them more money. I cashed out $1548!!!! because of them I lost basically everything and didnt understand why-

I spent over an hour on the phone with their margin person and they are not taking any responsibility.
I asked if I could read about this and he said he would tell me everything.

I went on his info. They should be held accoutable for this. I wanted half of my money back from them.
They have ignored me for over a month now. I charged back 2 deposits and they in return went into my bank account and pulled the $1548 back.

They said that I owe them $2800 now- I am telling them that they owe me $650 but I will be happy to just walk away from the whole thing.

These people are dirty- I signed nothing, I agreed to nothing with margin. They just put it in my account and went over it with me on the phone.

STay away from these folks-

Every stock that I bought was always off by at least .10 I had a real time quote from another website and I always got ripped on my stock prices as well.
These people are dirty. Hopefully they will take responsibility.

canton, Georgia

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 04/16/2008 09:07 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/sharebuilder-securities/bellevue-washington-98005/sharebuilder-sharebuilder-securities-scammed-by-sharebuilder-stay-away-bellevue-washingt-326470. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 General Comment

Research, Knowledge, and Due Diligence

AUTHOR: chad - (United States of America)

I have to take serious issue with this report because my experience as a new customer of Sharebuilder securities completely contradicts it. First off, I must note that education is very important and Georgia has been lagging well behind the national average for data going all the way back to 1996. http://nces.ed.gov/nationsreportcard/states/chartsview.aspx?jur=GA&sbj=MAT&gr=4&sample=R3&yr=2009&st=MN&acc=false

I bring this up because I was educated in Wisconsin, where I was required to take a course in economics in order to graduate. In the class we were taught that one of the more significant, thought not the only, factors causing the Great Depression of the 1930's was an exotic new type of financial concept known as buying on margin. Much like derivatives and credit default swaps in the present time they were loosely regulated and caused excessive market speculation. Wikipedia has an easily understandable definition. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margin_(finance)

The fact that a person sunk 6,600.00 into an investment they had no knowledge or understanding of strikes me as extraordinarily odd and leads me to question the credibility of the report in the absence of documented evidence proving it. With 5 minutes of research on google I learned the following: a simple search for "margin trading" will return over 2 million results, (plenty of information and easily accessible to a newbie investor) Sharebuilder has been around since 1999 and has an A+ rating from the BBB, and have had a total of 62 complaints filed in the last 36 months, 24 of which came in the last 12. 

While my rebuttal may seem quite critical I will try to end on the upbeat, by pointing out that Sharebuilder resolved all 62 complaints with the BBB, though not all customers were completely satisfied. So if it really is legit, I strongly encourage you to file a formal complaint, because the company's history indicates they are eager to solve complaints. Info from BBB is here, for all the world to see. http://www.bbb.org/western-washington/business-reviews/stock-and-bond-brokers/sharebuilder-securities-corporation-in-seattle-wa-27029467

As for my personal experience filling out a new customer application, there was a check box to sign up for margin trading which I promptly ignored and never had to worry about again, because I was educated enough to know better. It is easy to blame our mistakes on others but taking responsibility and learning from them will always pay dividends down the road.
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#2 Consumer Comment

What to do

AUTHOR: Mrfourpointo - (U.S.A.)

Before you invest with any company go to www.finra.org and use their BrokerCheck system to see if they have any type of disciplinary history in the brokerage industry. More importantly you NEED to file a written complaint; this is easier than it sounds. Write a complaint letter detailing what happened to you and address it to their main office at the attention of their Chief Compliance Officer. This is the address:

1445 - 120TH AVE. NE, BELLEVUE, WA 98005

Under federal securities laws and regulatory rules firms are required to report complaints. If there is a particular broker you were assigned to, it is important to name them specifically in your letter. Also, you can copy the complaint directly to FINRA here:


Someone at FINRA will review the complaint and determine whether or not to open an investigation into the matter. EVERY complaint gets looked at, trust me.

***NOTE*** In all fairness it is important not to file fraudulent complaints, as these matters are serious and in some circumstances will permanently be attached to the firm or the individual's industry record. However, if you really did not sign a Margin Agreement, then this is a very serious matter.
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#3 Author of original report

you missed the point there guy

AUTHOR: Citi Financial Is A Scam - (U.S.A.)

The point was that I was brand new in the trading business. This company took advantage of me by pusing this margin trading on me. They lied to get me to do it.
They stated that it was a great thing and I didnt pay the loan back unless the stock hit zero otherwise it was 9% a month charge.
Its obvious you work there because you dont even see the point i was making.
I didnt sign anything for margin, they did it on the phone and had me go to some page and click a button. Very pushy!!!
When you have something educated to say, let me know. Obviously I pay my credt card bills if they wanted to lend me all of this money to use margin. So why dont you look at what you typed and backtrack.
I read what they told me to read. I trusted this company to tell me the truth on the phone...after all, I never knew what margin was.
Its ridiculous. This company cost me a lot of money.
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#4 Consumer Suggestion

What did you think the margin account was?

AUTHOR: Rob - (U.S.A.)

Why would you think that Sharebuilder would give you money to buy stocks and that the money didn't need to be paid back unless the stock hit $0...

You took out a LOAN from Sharebuilder, you purchased stocks with that loan, and the stocks tanked - it happens in the stock market. Now the company that loaned you the money wants it back....imagine that.

Do you do the same thing with your credit cards? Buy a bunch of stuff and then wonder why you now have to pay the bills? This was the same thing and you (at some point during the sign up) were presented with a "Terms and Conditons" page that you agreed to - if you didn't read it how was that anyone's fault except your own.

Good luck to you - in the future you need to read and understand everything prior to using the product.......Caveat emptor
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#5 Author of original report

They dont return calls, hang up on you and threaten.

AUTHOR: Citi Financial Is A Scam - (U.S.A.)

I keep getting emails every day saying that I have an open Margin Account- which is false. I call the number that it gives me and they hang up on me.
I try to get transfered but the wont. I told them to stop emailing me that I have a margin account when I have a closed sharebuilder account.
These folks do not leave well enough alone. I am not sure why.
I went to their coroporate office (via phone) and spoke to 3 people that were high up on the employee level. I keep getting pushed off on customer service though.
they dont care about people. They just care about how much they can screw you out of.
Not good. I am now in contact with a media friend that is putting together a story that will help expose this company. Their employee sales tactics are unethical and should be shown to the public.
Please just do yourself a favor and invest elsewhere. They are not nice people.
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