I just wanted to share an experience I just had with a representative from the piece-of-shit company that it E*TRADE.
I’ve been trying to close my account with them for a couple of weeks, you see, and not having much luck. I tried emailing them for assistance and got an automated response. I tried figuring it out on my own, and my attempts even just to sell the stock I was holding were denied by the website on multiple occasions. Eventually, after the market closed last Friday, the website acknowledged that I has asked to sell my stock, and promised to do so just as soon as it could.
Monday morning, about 20 minutes after the market opened, my stocks sold. My polaroid stock sold for $0.00, since the E*TRADE commission for selling it was larger than the value of the stock. Actually, the charged me an undisclosed amount for the privelige of selling my stock. My Apple stock went for a fair amount, days after they announced new products and days before they announced a 4thQtr loss, less the fees of course. Then the outstanding negative balance of around $125 was deducted from the remaining value, and I was left with about $400.
Let me put that into perspective for you: I deposited (in a couple of deposits) around $1200 into E*TRADE to buy stocks. Due to the bankruptcy of Polaroid and the tech bubble bursting and bringing the Apple stock down with it, I lost approximately 40% of my stock value total. And I only got approximately 33% of my initial value back. Huh…. that must mean … E*TRADE took a full 27% in fees!
Anyway, so I’ve been pretty upset with E*TRADE for a while now. When I asked them last year some time how I could just get the stock certificates and close my E*TRADE account, they told me it would cost more than selling the stock through them, closing the acocunt, and re-buying the stock through a reputable broker. Well, not in those words exactly, but that meaning. That and the implied reference to the title of this site.
Where was I? Oh yeah. As soon as I was advised that my sock had sold, I put in a request that a check be sent to me (for an additional fee) for the full value of my account. It advised me that a check would be sent out the next business day. Since getting all of my money doesn’t exactly mean the account is closed, i thought I’d call and be sure the account got closed. After being on hold for a full 35 minutes (I love call timers) I calmly asked to have my account closed. The unfriendly rep on the other end, who would not giv eme his name proceeded to tell me that I could not have the value of the stock that had just sold for three days, that the check disbursment request I had made was invalid and deleted it, and that there was no possible way to put in a request to have the money sent to me and the account closed as soon as is possible with their rules. I asked for a supervisor and he refused to transfer me, I began to raise my voice but was very careful not to insult the rep or use foul language or anything else that would reasonably warrant being hung up on, and he continued to refuse to transfer me or assist me, and he actually began to laugh at me and make jokes at my expense. Which made me angrier and louder, but still not insulting or obscene. Then he hung up on me.
So I waited three days and last night I put in another request for a check for the amount of whatever is in my account. So tonight I thought I’d be sure the check got issued, the next business day basically being over. And it hasn’t. So I put in another request electronically, and I called. And I got Nate Denig. Who was very polite, and very calm, and did not laugh at me or make jokes at my expense, and stayed quiet while I told him about why I don’t like his company and the 27% they took. He cancelled all the check requests I had made and put in one of his own (that I verified live online while I was on the phone with him had not only been entered, but that confirmed that the order had been properly placed and a check would go out, as opposed to my requests that just said they had received my request) and a close account order and asked if there was anything else he could do to help me.
So I suggested that he refund the hundreds of dollars in fees that his company had charged me without notice or consent, and he kindly informed me that there was no way he could do that and asked me if there was anything else he could do to help me. I suggested that he pay me back out of his own pocket, since his paycheck came from fees fraudulently charged to my account (fraudulent in my eyes, not the US Judicial system which recognizes E*TRADE’s right to screw its customers as long as they put up a page somewhere that says they may screw their customers), and he said he wouldn’t do that and asked me if there was anything else he could do to help me. I suggested that he go to Hell and writhe in torment for eternity, that that might help me feel better, and he just asked me if there was anything else he could do to help me. I suggested that perhaps his killing himself might help, that perhaps he should kill his supervisors and his co-workers and himself in a murderous spree that might just harm the company in some way, and he said he wouldn’t do that, and asked me if there was anything else he could do to help me. I suggested that he quit working for a disreputable company and go find a job with a company worth working for, and he just asked me if there was anything else he could do to help me. I told him that I believed that he didn’t sound like he could be of any further assistance to me, thanks for nothing and have a rotten day, and he AGAIN asked me if there was anything else he could do to help me. I suggested rotting in Hell again, but he didn’t go for it, and after a couple more tries he stoped asking me if there was anything else he could do to help me. I had to say a specific phrase though, something like “No, Nate, there is nothing more you can do to help me today.”
So hopefully I’ll get my check eventually, my E*TRADE account will be closed and will stop accumulating fees, and all that business.
And hopefully Nate Denig will find a job more worthwhile than the one he currently works for. He clearly has valuable customer service skills. I even used obscene language and insulted him in the middle of the call a bit, and he stayed calm and impersonal and just tried to assist me and stick to the company line. I hope he goes on to a successful and fulfilling career in Customer Service, and hopefully witha company worth standing behind.