Frequently Asked Questions
What is eConnectDirect® and why was it developed?
eConnectDirect is an online investment platform that aggregates thousands of fixed-income offerings to effectively compare, select and manage investments across the bond and CD marketplace. eConnectDirect is designed to provide transparency, depth-of-market and efficiencies throughout the life cycle of an investment. It also features tools to help you manage your outstanding positions.
Who owns eConnectDirect?
Multi-Bank Securities, Inc. (MBS) is the sole owner of eConnectDirect. MBS has been a registered broker-dealer for more than 29 years. Visit www.finra.org to review our FINRA broker-dealer status – CRD No. 22098.
What is the relationship between MBS and eConnectDirect?
MBS is the executing broker-dealer of record on every transaction. MBS also provides all development and technical support related to eConnectDirect.
Are there fees associated with eConnectDirect?
There is no monthly subscription fee for using eConnectDirect and no transaction fees for any bond or certificate of deposit (CD) purchases.*
If there are no fees, how does MBS get compensated?
MBS is compensated one of two ways: Either the issuer is offering a selling concession to distribute their new-issue CD or security, or a mark-up/mark-down is applied to the offering (bid) price, also known as the bid/ask spread. Either way, no additional transaction fees are charged to you when utilizing eConnectDirect.
What fixed-income asset classes are available on eConnectDirect?
- Corporate Bonds
- Municipal Bonds
- U.S. Agencies (GSEs)
- U.S. Treasuries
Where do you get this inventory? Are all the CDs and bonds listed on eConnectDirect owned by MBS?
Individual inventory offerings are from multiple sources, providing access to trillions of dollars in debt securities from hundreds of broker-dealers. It is not unusual to see a particular CUSIP being offered by multiple dealers at different quantities and prices.
MBS is a primary underwriter of U.S. agencies and CDs; those offerings are included in the marketplace.
How often are the prices shown on eConnectDirect updated?
eConnectDirect regularly updates its pricing throughout the day to deliver you a reliable resource for gathering timely information and investing in the most efficient way with institutional pricing. eConnectDirect uses multiple resources, technologies, providers and redundancies to deliver the most up-to-date pricing available on all its published offerings.
How does a customer get started with eConnectDirect?
First, we schedule an introductory webinar with you to demonstrate how eConnectDirect’s features and tools can help your institution meet its unique investment goals. Once MBS is accepted as an approved broker-dealer, getting set up is quick and easy. We require the following four items:
- User agreement: Defines user access, authorized users and terms and conditions.
- Safekeeping or custody location for bond purchases: Cash, DVP and Prime Brokerage accounts can be accommodated.
- Signed resolution: Only those on the resolution are permitted to submit orders.
- Tax ID Number
Do I need to approve any other broker-dealers my firm works with to request transactions on eConnectDirect?
No. You only need to approve MBS.
There are multiple people involved in the investment process. How does eConnectDirect address different roles?
Customizable settings allow you to give multiple users different levels of access. Defined permissions and notifications let you effectively communicate account activity and limit trade requests to only authorized users.
Where is eConnectDirect’s customer service department located?
Additionally, each institutional account is assigned a FINRA-registered MBS account representative to be your main point of contact and assist with trade recommendations, requests and customer/technical support.
Once I sign up, do I still have access to my broker?
Yes. eConnectDirect allows you to work independently if you choose, or work with your licensed account representative in a dynamic way – working side-by-side with you on fixed-income investment decisions you wish to make or answering any questions you may have. Transactions can be requested electronically through the platform or directly from your broker.
What happens to my cart after I hit submit?
Submitting a request through eConnectDirect is similar to requesting a transaction over the phone with your broker. After you click submit, your transaction request is sent to our Trading Desk, which executes the trade. Your account representative is also notified. Regardless of whether you request a transaction online or over the phone, all trade processing and documentation will be available on eConnectDirect.
Can I sell bonds on eConnectDirect?
Yes. eConnectDirect’s Request a Quote function allows you to sell a bond you currently own. Simply provide the CUSIP, quantity and proposed settlement date, and our Trading Desk will forward a bid to you.
How will eConnectDirect help me manage my positions/portfolios?
eConnectDirect provides many tools and automated services to enhance the way you manage your trades, individual positions and portfolio as a whole. These include, but are not limited to:
- FDIC insurance analysis (“scrub”)
- Investment policy tool
- Unit price valuation
- Portfolio activities and balances
- Trade processing, communication and documentation
- Reports: accrued interest, expected cash flow, maturity distribution and more
Can I use eConnectDirect and continue to use my current broker(s)?
eConnectDirect was designed so you can use it as your sole source for information and transaction requests, or in conjunction with any other current relationships you have.
I want to safekeep at multiple locations. Does eConnectDirect support that?
Absolutely. eConnectDirect allows you to process trades across all of your accounts with one login.
How does eConnectDirect help me manage my FDIC/NCUA insurance coverage limits?
eConnectDirect provides a comprehensive insurance analysis (“scrub”) to continually compare available inventory against your existing holdings. Since no two investors typically hold the same bank CDs, your view of the CD market is specific to your institution only. Through a variety of resources, eConnectDirect tracks bank mergers, acquisitions and failures to deliver a safe and reliable method to easily purchase CDs. You can also load existing CDs purchased into eConnectDirect, allowing you to run an insurance analysis on-demand.
Is eConnectDirect secure?
The eConnectDirect website is completely based on SSL (https://) security. All access is password-protected with user security profiles to ensure identity management and control should passwords be forgotten or need to be reset. MBS has independent third parties perform regular vulnerability and penetration testing to verify system and security integrity. Additional details related to website security are available upon request.
*There may be fees associated with other products/services offered by MBS.