Founder and Chairman of Interactive Brokers
Dear customers, associates, shareholders and friends all over the world. We look back at 2021 as a very good year. The only better year I can see, is the one coming. Let me explain.
This past year we had more customers and more trades and more revenues than we ever had before. We have introduced more products and more tools and expanded many existing ones. We have hired and trained many fellow employees. I want to tell you exactly why I see such a bright future ahead of us. What I see is that there is an increasing hunger on the part of people all over the world to actively participate in the global economy. Not only as consumers but also as investors.
More and more people in more and more places want to understand how the economy works, how corporations work, what makes companies to decide to produce certain goods and services and not different ones. They are realizing that it is them, by their choices as consumers, who drive these corporate decisions. All these companies are trying to do, is just to predict what consumers will like and provide it for them. When they are successful, they will sell a lot and make a profit and the stock prices will rise. When they are not successful the opposite will happen.
Thinking people begin to look at what they see of this process around themselves and start observing and reading about it. They want to develop their own ideas and choose which corporations are doing the right thing, and wanting to participate in their success. They will want to buy their stock, and this is when we come in, but I say let's come in earlier. Let's figure out how to ignite people's curiosity about the economy about the workings of corporations and investing in them. Let's teach them about it. Let's make them aware, make them curious, make them learn. To be successful investors they will have to learn that it is not enough to correctly evaluate which companies will be successful.
There is a fierce competition among companies for customer dollars. Investors will have to be able to evaluate this company's likely success relative to others who try to provide goods and services that customers may substitute. Then they have to look at the relative stock prices. They will have to pick the ones where the probable success is higher than the relative stock price would indicate. This is the point at which we would like to invite these potential customers to our website and convince them that we will provide the necessary information and education to use it.
We will teach them the fundamental economic forces and their interactions and how to understand company specific data and how to find out their intentions. We will give them the means to learn about this and to practice absolutely free, and then we'll give them the tools they will need to trade and invest. As long as we provide better, easier to consume and more practical education and information, the lowest transaction and borrowing cost, the broadest product base and the most productive platform, our acceptance in the eyes of the public will continue to grow.
We want to be the platform of choice for the hardest working, best educated and most successful investors. Thanks to you, under the capable leadership of our CEO, Milan Galik, and the united and conscious effort from all of us, we will fulfill this mission.
I wish you all a very happy and prosperous new year.