Cheap + good way to buy TSE, SWX, or LSE stocks?

Discussion in 'Stocks' started by miamicanes, Nov 21, 2008.

  1. Is there any straightforward, cheap and worthwhile way for American investors to buy stocks traded on TSE (Taiwan), SWX (Switzerland), or LSE (London) and AREN'T traded in the US as ADRs on a "real" exchange (NYSE/NASDAQ)?

    Examples: HTC (2498.TW) and Ciba (CIBN)?

    (for anyone who's wondering, HTC is the company that actually makes most Windows Mobile PDA phones for Sprint, Verizon, and others... I think they're ALSO the company who does the actual design & manufacturing of the phones themselves for Palm/Handspring).

    In theory, HTC has ADRs, but they're pink sheet, hideously expensive, and seem to actually trade about a dozen times per year. Ciba apparently USED to be traded on NYSE as ADRs, but decided it wasn't worth the added cost & regulatory oversight and voluntarily withdrew.

    Wasn't/isn't one of Nasdaq's back-burner projects the creation of "virtual" ADRs that would allow ANYONE to buy ANY stock traded on a NASDAQ-owned exchange anywhere in the world? I vaguely remember reading somewhere that it was an idea they were pursuing back when they were trying to buy the London Stock Exchange... basically, the idea was that you'd pay them an up-front fee to create a legal ADR "container" for the first share falling under the jurisdiction of some foreign country, then buy as many or as few shares as you liked directly from the affiliated exchange at market value during its normal hours and have them transparently "wrapped" by that container. Sound familiar?