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Discount Brokers

Questrade Democratic Pricing - 1 cent per share, $4.95 min / $9.95 maxA discount broker is a platform every DIY investors need to have to manage their investments but not all discount brokers are equal. It’s important to effectively assess:

  • What you need when you start
  • What you need when you have $50,000 (minimum of fees at some discount brokers)
  • What you need for all your type of investments
Don’t hesitate to switch if your discount broker doesn’t meet your requirements anymore. It’s really easy to switch and your desired discount broker will pretty much do all the work. Depending on how much you will transfer, you even get refunded for some of the fees.
At some point, I took the time to research the appropriate discount broker for me and I put together a list of requirements matching my dividend investing strategy. When you put everything down and compare them one to another, you quickly start to eliminate some discount brokers.

Scotia iTrade Discount Broker Review

Scotia iTrade was my first serious platform through the purchase of e*trade Canada. I stuck with it as trading was cheaper than Scotia McLoed and I was not far away from the minimum required holdings for $9.99. My requirements were minimal and I was satisfied. However, as I grew my portfolio and my investment knowledge, it stopped meeting my needs and I moved on to RBC Direct Investing.

RBC Direct Investing Discount Broker Review

RBC Direct Investing is where my fortune currently resides (if I can call it a foturne :)) … Considering it had the best matches highlighted in my discount broker review, I went with it and reviewed it after I was setup. Six months later, I initiated the transfered of my kids RESP and I can say, one more time, that their service is really good.

XE.com Currency Exchange Review

Currency exchange, also known as Forex, are quite important when you start owning investment in foreign currencies. At some point, you may decide to buy US stocks and you may want to reduce your exchange fees by not using the discount broker and leveraging other services with better fees. XE is one of those easy to use option.

Computershare

The darling of all accounts! Computershare is not sexy but it works. It follows the mantra of start early, go slow and stick to your plan.

5 Responses to "Discount Brokers"

  1. Christine says:

    Hello, been learning from your site and newsletters for a couple of months now. Brokerage houses are my next order of business. TD had a promo of $450 in cash for trading – it can only be used to pay fees. Fair enough. I want to DRIP within TFSA, but as you know TD does not do fractional nor discount.

    For an person who is not going to actively trade each month – the brokerage house won’t matter, but when doing the math on DRIPS – my question to you – ” Is it folly to go with TD for $450 and not be able to DRIP and take advantage of gains etc OR dump the free cash and go with RBC?”

    Thanks so much!

    • @Christine
      BMO has a promotion now, you could look into them as well.
      RBC just made their trading fee flat at $9.95 regardless of the amount in holdings.
      Questrade has the best fees and they have promotions as well. You can DRIP with them but no discount last time I checked. Free ETFs as a bonus.

  2. Henry says:

    I have some of my accts at ShareOwners Investment Inc. They automatially re-invest dividends regardless of the amount and purchasing partial shares. You can only purchase stocks which meet their growth criteria (but I’ve had not problem with the DG stocks I follow) and their rates are a bit higher than some of the others. Since I don’t trade or buy often and only in larger amounts (fee always less than 1/4 of one percent), my cost is minimal.

  3. Brad says:

    Love your website and would like to thank you for the time and effort you have put into it as I have learned a lot reading your posts. I am new to the game and do not have a lot of money but I’m looking to start my portfolio with a DRIP and maybe a long-term position in the states… Would you recommend a discount broker for a newbie starting out? I have an account with iTrade but haven’t committed yet and I have heard good and bad things about Questrade. Any tips or thoughts would be much appreciated.

    Looking forward to more pa$$ive income!

    • @Brad

      Initially, look for a discount broker that matches your requirements with low costs. Over time, you can switch to another discount broker, it’s pretty easy. ScotiaITrade has cost for the USD account, just look into that.

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