GreenWeaver- I just wanted to say that there are some banks that are offering stockbroker and investment services to their clientele.
Bank of America now offers brokerage services through Merrill Lynch. They have two types of accounts. One is self directed which is predominately online and the other is managed through Merrill Lynch.
They do require a minimum investment of $25,000 in order to purse the active management services through Merrill Lynch.
The branch will have the representative from Merrill Lynch call you to set up an account and they are the best brokerage house around.
Other banks like Chase and HSBC offer investment services through their licensed staff. This makes investing and banking really easy and it gives the bank an opportunity to create a better banking relationship with their customers. I really like that approach.