ARCHIVE: Best online brokers in Canada 2019-2020 comparison


 

NOTE: These rankings are based on data collected in May 2019 and do not reflect changes which may have taken place since then.

Go here to read about Canada’s best online brokerages 2019/2020 ►►

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  BMO InvestorLine CIBC Investor’s Edge Desjardins Online Brokerage HSBC InvestDirect Interactive Brokers Laurentian Bank Discount Brokerage National Bank Direct Brokerage Qtrade Investor Questrade RBC Direct Investing Scotia iTrade TD Direct Investing Virtual Brokers
Minimum account size to qualify for no annual fees or inactivity fees
  • $25,000 (RRSP)
  • $15,000 (non-registered)
  • $25,000 (RRSP)
  • $10,000 (non-registered)
  • $0 (RESP/TFSA)
  • $15,000, OR
  • six transactions per year, OR
  • holding a registered account
  • $25,000 (RRSP)
  • $10,000 (non-registered)
  • $0 (TFSA)
  • $10 USD in commissions per month, OR
  • $100,000 USD in assets
  • $15,000 (RRSP), OR
  • $100,000 across all accounts
$20,000 across all accounts
  • $25,000 OR
  • monthly contributions of $50 for young investors; $100 for everyone else, OR
  • eight or more commission-generating trades in preceeding 12 months
  • $5,000 across all accounts, OR
  • join Questrade MyFamily program, OR
  • under 25 yrs of age, OR
  • subcribe to a streaming data package, OR
  • execute 1 trade
  • $15,000 across all accounts, OR
  • three or more trades per quarter, OR
  • make pre-authorized contributions of $300 or more per quarter
  • $25,000 across all accounts OR 12 trades per year (RRSP)
  • $15,000 across all accounts (RESP)
  • $10,000 across all accounts OR 1 trade per quarter (non-registered)
$15,000 across all accounts $5,000 across all accounts
Basic online equity trading commission1 $9.95 $6.95 $9.95 $6.88 Minimum $1.00 CDN, $0.01 CDN per share $9.95 $9.95 $8.75 $4.95 min. to $9.95 max., at rate of 1¢ per share $9.95 $9.99 $9.99 $9.99
Are lower or higher commissions charged in different circumstances? $4.95 per trade (150+ trades per quarter) $5 (active traders on Market Q); $6.95 to $8.95 (Prestige clients); $45 (phone
trades via representative, or $19.95 for Prestige clients)
$4.88 per trade (150+ trades per quarter) Offer both tiered and fixed pricing $6.95 (30+ trades per quarter) $6.95 (150+ trades per quarter OR $500,000 across all accounts); $7.75 (investors
aged 18–30 making monthly $50+ pre-authorized contributions)
$4.95 per trade OR 1¢ per share to a maximum of $6.95 per trade (with
subscription to a data package)
$6.95 (150+ trades per quarter) $4.99 (150+ trades per quarter); $24.99 (less than $50,000 across all accounts) $7.00 (150+ trades per quarter) $0 (platform traders); $4.99 (150+ trades per quarter OR assets over $250,000)
Is it possible a client could be charged an Electronic Communication Network
(ECN) or additional fee on top of specified commissions in certain situations?1
(platform fees may apply, depending on
trading volume)
✔ (any fees are identified prior to order
being placed)
✔ ($0.005 per share for U.S. securities
traded outside of regular market hours)
No additional fees for retail clients paying $9.99 flat commission. Fees may
apply for clients who use “commission-free” structure and trade with platform
Basic options commission1 $9.95 + $1.25 per contract $6.95 + $1.25 per contract $1.25 per contract, minimum $8.75 $6.88 + $1.25 per contract; $4.88 +$1.25 per contract for Active Trader clients $1.25 per contract $9.95 + $1.25 per contract $9.95$ + $1.25/contract $8.75 + $1.25 per contract $9.95 + $1/contract including multi-leg option strategies where customers can
buy multiple options (up to 4) as part of 1 strategy and only pay one ticket commission.
$9.95 + $1.25 per contract $9.99 + $1.25 per contract 9.99 for options + 1.25 per contract or 7.00 for options + 1.25 per contract for
active traders (150 TPQ)
$9.99 + $1.25 per contract
How many commission-free ETFs are offered, if any? 55 All Canadian and U.S.-listed ETFs (if the trade is for 100 shares or more) 100 All Canadian and U.S.-listed ETFs 49 All Canadian and U.S.-listed ETFs
Is commission charged on BUYING commission-free ETFs? ✔ ✔
Is commission charged on SELLING commission-free ETFs? ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔
Are Series
D
funds offered?
✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔
Can you hold U.S. dollars in registered accounts? ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ (launching summer 2018) ✔ ✔
Can you purchase Bonds and/or GICs online? ✔ ✔ Bonds Bonds Corporate Bonds Bonds Bonds ✔ ✔ ✔ Bonds
(GICs by phone)
✔
Can you purchase international stocks online, including ADRs? International stocks ADRs ✔ ✔ Only U.S.-traded ADRs ✔ ADRs online; International stocks by phone only ADRs ADRs ADRs online; International stocks by phone only ✔
Does the firm offer a mobile app or a mobile-adaptive design for mobile clients? ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔
How many products are available for trading on mobile devices? Mobile: Equities, ETFs, options
Tablet: Equities, ETFs,
options, mutual funds, GICs, ADRs
Equities, ETFs (Options planned to launch spring 2018) Equities, ETFs, bonds, Mutual funds, options Stocks, options, futures, FOPs, forex, fixed income, ETFs and warrants Equities All products Equities, ETFs, options, option strategies (up to 4 legs), FX and CFDs Equities, options, mutual funds, ETFs Equities, ETFs, options Equities, ETFs, options (including multi-leg option and stock + option), mutual
funds
North American equities and ETFs
Can a user get market quotes or account balances via mobile devices without
logging in?
Quotes, not balances ✔ (with Touch ID) ✔ ✔ Quotes, not balances
What extras are available to active traders?
  • Additional data access
  • proprietary BMO Capital Markets research
  • Reduced commissions
  • MarketQ platform access provides additional data access, streaming quotes, charts and
    watchlists
  • Reduced commissions
  • preferred margin rates
  • Active traders can select from our fixed or tiered pricing, which could provide savings
    on commissions.
  • Services for ultra active traders (300 trades per year)
  • reduced commissions
  • $6.95 commissions
  • no fee for USD registered accounts
  • dedicated phone number
  • preferred margin rates
  • Reduced commissions
  • market data rebates
  • IQ Edge desktop trading software
  • Reduced commissions
  • additional data access
  • FlightDesk platform access
  • additional data access
  • reduced commissions
  • no admin fees for registered accounts
  • personalized service
  • preferred IPO access
  • members-only events
  • Additional data access, reduced commissions, Elite phone service
  • Reduced commissions
  • additional trading platforms
  • access to VIP desk
Is there an exclusive service for large accounts?
  • 5 Star Silver (assets $250,000–$499,999)
  • 5 Star Gold (assets $500,000–$9,999,999 OR 30 to 149 trades per quarter)
  • 5 Star Platinum (assets $10,000,000+ OR 150+ trades per quarter)
Premium Edge Prestige Service
  • Jade
  • Premier
Provides all products and services to clients regardless of size. FX autoswap to
save on financing cost
Private Distinctive Services (includes a dedicated account manager) Investor Plus Questrade Platinum (assets over $500,000) Royal Circle (assets over $250,000 OR annual commissions over $5,000) iClub Personal relationship manager and dedicated team, expedited account opening and
transfers, dedicated phone line and email, custom credit solutions, premium margin rates,
preferred FX rates
  • VIP
  • VIP Gold
  • VIP Elite
Does the site offer live chat? ✔ ✔ (Launch planned in 2018) ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔ ✔
What days and hours are live-chat or telephone services available? Mon–Fri, 08:00–20:00 ET Mon–Fri, 09:00–18:00 ET Mon–Fri, 07:00–19:00 ET Phone:
Mon–Thu: 24 hours
Fri: 00:00–20:00 ET
Sun: 06:00–00:00
ET
Mon–Sat, 24 hours Mon–Fri, 08:00–17:00 ET Mon–Fri, 08:00–20:00 ET Mon–Fri, 08:30–17:00 ET Mon–Fri, 07:30–20:00 ET
(in English, French, and Mandarin)
Chat:
Mon–Fri, 09:00–18:00 ET
Phone:
Mon–Fri,
07:00–20:00 ET
Chat:
Mon–Fri, 08:30–17:00 ET
Phone:
Mon–Fri,
08:00–21:00 ET
Sat, 08:00–18:00 ET
Phone:
24 hours/day
Mon–Fri, 08:00–17:00 ET
Does the firm have social media coverage? If so, what are the hours and days? ✔ Mon–Fri, 09:00–22:00 ET
Sat–Sun,
09:00–18:00 ET
✔ Mon–Fri, 08:00–19:00 ET ✔ Mon–Fri, 08:00–20:00 ET ✔ Mon–Fri, 24 hours ✔ Mon–Fri, 08:00–20:00 ET ✔ Mon–Fri, 12:00–20:00 ET ✔ Mon–Fri, 09:00–17:00 ET ✔ Mon–Sun, 08:00–01:00 ET ✔ Mon–Fri, 08:30–17:00 ET ✔ Mon–Sun, 06:00–23:00 ET ✔ Mon–Fri, 08:00–17:00 ET
Average time to respond to a non-login service enquiry in past year2 82 hours 49 hours 41 hours 85 hours 27 hours Never Respond 76 hours 15 hours 10 hours 16 hours 52 hours 39 hours 115 hours
For more information, including Best Features and Buyer Beware information More Info More Info More Info More Info More Info More Info More Info More
Info
More
Info
More Info More
Info
More Info More Info

1. Equity and options commissions may vary according to the size of the investor’s account and/or the frequency
of trades.

2. Response times are measured using Surviscor’s Service Level Assessment program which assessed 152 non-secure
service interactions between May 2018 to April 2019.

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