How to buy GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) shares from Australia

By   |   Verified by David Boyd   |   Updated 27 Sep 2023

GlaxoSmithKline plc (NYSE: GSK and LON: GSK) is a global healthcare company that makes and markets a wide range of prescription medicines and vaccine products. GSK was established in 2000 as the result of a merger between Glaxo Wellcome and SmithKline Beecham. It is headquartered in London.

Glaxo listed on the London Stock Exchange in 1972 and today the company is part of the Financial Times Stock Exchange 100 Index, also referred to as FTSE 100 Index or FTSE 100.

If you want to invest in GlaxoSmithKline shares from Australia, here's how.

About the company

GlaxoSmithKline overview

GSK operates through three segments Pharmaceuticals, Vaccines, and Consumer Healthcare. Its research focuses on the six areas of respiratory diseases, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/infectious diseases, vaccines, immuno-inflammation, oncology, and rare diseases.

The Pharmaceuticals business discovers, develops, and commercialises medicines to treat a wide range of acute and chronic diseases. These include brands in the segments of pain relief, oral health, nutrition, and gastrointestinal, respiratory, and skin health.

Its Vaccine business has more than 40 vaccines for every age group, from babies to adolescents, adults, and older people. These include vaccines for bacterial meningitis, diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough, hepatitis A and B, influenza, measles, mumps and rubella, polio, and typhoid.

GSK subsidiaries include GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals, GlaxoSmithKline Services, Tesaro, Alacer Corp., Stiefel Laboratories, and GSK-owned companies in many countries across the globe including GlaxoSmithKline Australia.

Unsure about what trading platform to use?

Where to buy GlaxoSmithKline shares

eToro

On website

Highlights

  • Trade and invest in top financial instruments, including a wide selection of stocks.
  • eToro is regulated by CySec, FCA, and ASIC.
  • Your funds are protected by industry-leading security protocols.
  • Earn up to 5.3% annual interest on your balance.
Saxo Markets

On website

Saxo Markets

Highlights

  • Invest in 23,500+ stocks from ASX, New York, Hong Kong, and 50+ other global markets.
  • No platform fees, no inactivity fees, and no FX fees on each trade.
  • Analyse, improve and manage your risk using intuitive trading tools.
Pearler

On website

Highlights

  • Enjoy low, transparent fees.
  • An option to Autoinvest. Set-and-forget your investment strategy.
  • Simply invest into any ETF from one of Pearler's ETF managers for at least one year, and it's free.
  • Clearing House Electronic Sub-register System (CHESS) sponsored.
Superhero

On website

Highlights

  • Open an account with just $100 and start investing today with a $5 flat-free brokerage ($0 on US shares) on share trades.
  • Buy and sell US shares & ETFs with $0 brokerage plus trade unsettled funds.
  • Fund your account in minutes with PayID and enjoy realtime FX transfers for fast US share trading.
Tiger Brokers

On website

Highlights

  • Available for ASX, US & HK stocks trading, ETFs, and US options trading.
  • Free market data for ASX and US stocks.
  • More accessible investment to all with a demo account.
Webull

On website

Webull

Highlights

  • Trade AU & US stocks, ETFs, and Options with $0 commission for the first 30 days.
  • Provides intuitive and powerful advanced charts, multiple technical indicators, and premier Level 2 Advance (Nasdaq TotalView).
  • Regulated by ASIC.

Pros

  • Invest from as little as US$5.
  • No deposit or withdrawal fees.
  • Allows you to trade fractional shares.
  • Access to advanced trading tools.

Cons

  • Scarcity of instructional resources for investors.
  • Supports AU and US markets only.
Moomoo

On website

Moomoo

Highlights

  • Trade blue-chip stocks in AU and US markets.
  • Trade multi-markets and multi-products with a lower commission. No custodian fee.
  • CHESS-Sponsored trading is now available.
  • Regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).

First time buying?

How to buy GlaxoSmithKline shares

Step 1: Select a broker

Find an online broker that allows you to access the London markets. There are many online broker options that you can access from Australia. Next, consider the features that you want from a broker.

Listed below are some features you should consider.

Trade with no broker commissions

You can trade without commission on many trading platforms in Australia. This saves you a lot of money over the long term.

Fractional shares

Brokers that offer fractional shares allow you to purchase a part of the share, an important consideration given that GSK shares trade at around US$45 on the NYSE and much more on the LSE. Fractional shares allow you to diversify your holdings more easily.

Intuitive trading

Trading shares shouldn't be complicated. You should choose a broking platform that is easy to use and doesn't require a lot of learning.

Company analysis and research

A trading platform that has a strong research and analysis section can help you make informed decisions based on market updates, price history, quarterly earnings reports, etc. A few brokers also offer analyst recommendations.

Step 2: Fund your trading account

You need to fund your account before you can buy shares. It’s possible that your funds will take some time to clear before trading can be started, so allow for this in your plans.

Step 3: Set your budget

You should only spend money you can afford to lose when buying shares. Shares are inherently volatile. Fractional shares allow you to start small.

Step 4: Invest via an ETF or in shares

An ETF (Exchange Traded Fund), while more diverse than shares, is still safer than investing directly in an active individual share.

ETFs that include GlaxoSmithKline include First Trust Value Line Dividend Index Fund (FVD), VanEck Vectors Pharmaceutical ETF (PPH), Avantis International Equity ETF (AVDE), and Pacer Global Cash Cows Dividend ETF (GCOW).

Step 5: Set up an order

You can choose from a variety of order types to customise when and how many of each share should be purchased. These order types are available from many brokers.

Market order

Market orders are orders that will be executed at the current market rate. The price you get on execution might not be the same as the one offered at the time the order was placed.

Limit order

A limit order is not like a market order. It's executed at your specified price or less.

Stop limit

This type of order allows you to automatically buy or sell your shares when a specified price is reached. However, if the market is moving quickly against you, the order may not be executed if the price rises or falls past your limit price.

Stop loss

This allows you to determine the price at which to sell. This is often used to protect a trade against market volatility. You could, for example, set up a stop loss at US$40 per share. Your stop-loss order will automatically be executed if the price drops below that level and your order will be filled at the next available market price.

Step 6: Place your order

After you have chosen a broker and decided what type of investment you want, you can place an order.

After you buy

What moves GlaxoSmithKline's share price

When you buy shares in a company, either to hold long-term or to benefit from speculating on price fluctuations, you need to keep track of the company’s performance and its share price movements.

Track GSK’s performance

Monitor how GSK performs by looking at its financial fundamentals as well as following its share price and dividend payouts.

You also need to keep an eye on its product and vaccine pipeline, because the pipeline of new products and vaccines determines a pharmaceutical company’s future prospects and share price movement to a large degree.

Competitors

GSK’s three key segments are pharmaceuticals, vaccines, and consumer healthcare. As a result, it competes with various companies across different healthcare subsectors, and you will need to monitor developments in each area. Its competitors include AstraZeneca (NASDAQ: AZN), Pfizer (NASDAQ: PFE), Bayer (ETR: BAYN), Eli Lilly (NYSE: LLY), Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ), Merck (NYSE: MRK), Sanofi (EPA: SAN) and Takeda Pharmaceutical (NYSE: TAK).

Disclaimer: We put our customer’s needs first. The views expressed in this article are those of the writer’s alone and do not constitute financial advice. Advertisers cannot influence editorial content. However, Finty and/or the writer may have a financial interest in the companies mentioned. Finty is committed to providing factual, honest, and accurate information that is compliant with governing laws and regulations. Do your own due diligence and seek professional advice before deciding to invest in one of the products mentioned. For more information, see Finty’s editorial guidelines and terms and conditions.