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Discount Brokerage Weekly Roundup – December 21, 2018

In addition to frenzied shopping, and trading platforms flashing more red than Rudolph’s nose, if there’s one thing to look forward to in the end of year hustle, it’s blockbuster releases. And, here at SparxTrading, we did not want to disappoint.

This final edition of the roundup for 2018 ends on a high note with a review of the launch of our special series: the Canadian online brokerage look back on 2018 and preview to 2018. We’ve been teasing this launch for a few weeks now and we’re very excited to have rolled out the blog version earlier this week. To give loyal readers of the Weekly Roundup a little thank you for reading, this roundup also has a first look at the full magazine version here before it goes live on our blog (yay presents!). Of course, that’s not the only gift in this roundup. In time for Christmas, there’s also a new online brokerage deal to announce from one of Canada’s largest online brokerages that will be sure to excite investors shopping around for a new trading account. Also, we’ve got a great stocking stuffer with the latest set of Canadian online brokerage rankings and ratings. Finally, it wouldn’t be a proper roundup without the discount brokerage tweets as well as chatter from investors in the forums.

Look Back & Look Ahead: 2018 Online Brokerage Review & Preview to 2019

After lots of anticipation, coffee, trimming, cutting and wrapping it’s finally here (and just in time for Christmas)! The much-awaited third edition of SparxTrading’s exclusive Canadian Online Brokerage Look Back / Look Ahead series for 2018/2019 is now live.

This year’s edition features nine of Canada’s online brokerages big and small, who’ve shared their milestones for 2018 as well as what’s around the corner for 2019. And wow, are there ever some interesting announcements.

To recap, the annual look back & look ahead series is an opportunity for Canada’s online brokerages to directly, and in their own words, share with DIY investors what it is they’ve been up to and where they see the priorities for the year ahead.

The format we’ve developed is a unique one in the Canadian online brokerage space. Unlike the structure of a review or rating, this compilation provides a good look at what online brokerages accomplished in the year as well as their vision for their priorities into the next year. Given the highly competitive nature of the industry, it is a challenge and somewhat rare to find online brokerages providing as much detail as we saw this year – so this is a definite score for readers. To be clear, there were still several intentionally vague answers about what 2019 holds for some brokerages, however, judging by both the activity in 2018 as well as from those brokerages who have telegraphed what they’re going to doing in 2019, the industry is definitely not standing still. In fact, quite the opposite.

Among the themes that we review in this year’s piece, is the influence of millennial investors on so many different elements of the online brokerage industry. This digitally savvy segment of the market has forced a reimagining of online investing. From mobile-first design, to expectations about performance,  pricing and user experience to the access they demand to investment products, catering to the requirements of this increasingly important demographic is pushing technology teams at online brokerages into overdrive.

Another major theme that appeared to be a driver of online brokerage strategy is buffering against commission drops and the entrants of competitors, like Wealthsimple Trade.

While Wealthsimple Trade has rightfully grabbed the spotlight for their commission-free trade announcement in the summer of this year, a black swan competitor appears to be poised to challenge existing online brokerages. Jitneytrade, which was acquired by Canaccord Genuity earlier this year, announced that they are launching a mainstream-investor focused online brokerage trading experience.

After years of catering almost exclusively to professional or highly active investors and traders, Jitneytrade announced their intent to launch a more mainstream service. Without giving too much away, some of the features of their new brokerage offering will include free ETF trading, young investor pricing, digital account openings and mobile applications to name but a few. This feature set would put them on par (if not possibly ahead of) many other mainstream-investor-oriented online brokerage offerings from their competitors.

The result of consolidation and acquisitions in the Canadian discount brokerage space is that the bigger and better capitalized entities are able to make bolder bets on the Canadian DIY investor. These bets may be driven, in part, by a wager that even DIY investors will be open to having portions of their wealth in a ‘managed’ format.

From a big picture perspective, Canaccord Genuity, CI Financial and Desjardins via Aviso Wealth have collectively introduced serious competition for share of investor wallet to the standard bank-owned brokerages’ wealth management practices. In particular, they are equipped to provide a suite of services historically dominated by bank-owned brokerages. In the case of CI Financial and Aviso Wealth, there is the full spectrum of wealth management – including robo or digital advice – that investors can access.

While the launch of InvestEase by RBC, the coming digital wealth management offering by TD Direct Investing and digital advice programs at BMO, Questrade and HSBC, it is clear that those online brokerages that don’t currently have a digital advice product live, are likely in pursuit of getting this offering on a roadmap to launch soon.

And, speaking of what’s coming around the corner, there were several interesting clusters of developments that emerged as priorities for Canadian discount brokerages in 2019.

One of the clearest areas in which online brokerages appear to want to improve and focus efforts on is the mobile investing experience. Firms such HSBC InvestDirect, Jitneytrade and Qtrade Investor have each mentioned this as an area in which they would be looking to enhance their current online trading offering.

A second important area of focus for online brokerages will be content. From educational offerings, to product and platform orientation to market intelligence and personal financial planning, financial content production appears to be ramping up in 2019. In this regard, the larger bank-owned online brokerages have an edge as they have deep talent pools of analysts and existing stock market research that they can leverage and turn into content investors, especially DIY investors, would be hungry for.

Finally, one of the most interesting things that we noted in this year’s look back and look ahead series comes from what was NOT said – namely pricing. None of the online brokerages who participated in this series mentioned dropping their commission prices (yet) however it’s hard to imagine that online brokerages aren’t already planning out how to navigate in that (soon to arrive) commission-free trading world.

The sum total of activity reflected in the submissions of Canada’s online brokerages about 2018 and 2019 indicate that they are working quickly to build strong value drivers. While order execution may be something that can be commoditized, user experience and account management can’t. Similarly, great service, attention to details and support are also things that clients may be willing to pay a bit more for.

For DIY investors, 2018 saw brokerages make substantial enhancements that will start to pay off with more stable, scaleable technology experiences in 2019. Competition for DIY investor business continues to drive commission prices for online trading lower as well as introduce interesting incentives (such as deals), valuable resources and a concerted effort by online brokerages to win over (and keep) investors. In spite of market volatility, heading into the new year, this could be the best year yet to be a DIY investor hunting for an online brokerage account for the long haul.

TD Direct Investing Launches New Promo in Time for the Holidays

Just in time for the holidays, the online brokerage arm of the big green bank, TD Direct Investing, delivered some festive cheer in the form of a new commission rebate promotion. There were several interesting observations about this promotion that stood out – especially against the landscape of current offers – that might signal a subtle shift in how discount brokerage deals are run.

First, however, let’s take a look at the details of the offer. This is a commission-rebate offer which means that trade commissions that meet eligibility requirements, will be rebated by a certain point after the trades are placed. In this particular offer the number of trades that can be rebated are between 25 and 200. To qualify for this offer a minimum deposit of $15,000 is required.

In terms of the window of time that trade commissions can be rebated, the deadline to place eligible trades is before July 1st, 2019. This means that users that open accounts sooner derive more benefit from this offer than those who open an online investing account later, in that early birds have more time to use the commission rebate.

It is noteworthy that of the discount brokerage offers that are currently live, TD Direct Investing has elected to stick to commission rebates (e.g. a form of commission-free trading) rather than compete directly with cash-back offers. This pits TD Direct Investing’s offer against the other commission-free trading or commission rebate offers from National Bank Direct Brokerage, Desjardins Online Brokerage and Scotia iTRADE. Of course, TD Direct Investing enjoys a massive advantage in terms of recognition and market share so relatively speaking, they don’t have to bid as aggressively to win new assets.

Another very interesting feature of this offer is that individuals need to register first in order to qualify to be eligible. While other online brokerages, such as Questrade, RBC Direct Investing or Scotia iTRADE have attempted something similar, they have often disclosed codes in their terms and conditions which means that filling out a form is optional. In the case of this offer from TD Direct Investing, filling out the webform is one of the mandatory conditions attached to this offer. From a marketing point of view, this means that users who submit their information into TD’s system then become prospective clients that TD can follow up with. Though subtle, it is one way that TD may be able to improve their success rates at DIY investors opening an account with them.

Finally, the timing of this offer indicates that TD is once again focusing its promotional campaign squarely on the RSP season rush. 2018 was a big year for new account openings, spurred at the outset by strong momentum in cannabis and cryptocurrency stocks. With the recent volatility across markets, however, this should be an interesting RRSP season for online brokerages. With this offer from TD Direct Investing now going live, DIY investors have the best selection of deals that they’ve had since last RSP season, however they’ll have to weigh these incentives against the choppiness in the market. Either way, a new deal to choose from just before the holidays is a great present for all DIY investors.

2018 Online Brokerage Rankings from Surviscor Released

The latest online brokerage rankings from financial research firm Surviscor were released this past week. The big takeaway according to founder and president of Surviscor, Glenn LaCoste, who appeared on BNN Bloomberg, was that there was not much of interest that took place in the industry since the last ranking.

One thing that did stand out as a negative, according to the Surviscor analysis, was deteriorating service. According to their mystery shop data, response times for online enquiries at Canadian discount brokerages slipped, with no firm apparently responding faster than 12 hours.

Taking top spot again this year was Qtrade Investor followed by Questrade and BMO InvestorLine. At the bottom of the pool was HSBC InvestDirect. Interestingly, this set of rankings included Interactive Brokers which placed 7th out of 12 brokerages analyzed.

Discount Brokerage Tweets of the Week

From the Forums

Miss Understanding

With the changing representation of the DIY Investor in social media and some Canadian online brokerages recently (e.g. National Bank Direct Brokerage – who recently overhauled their website with a more balanced inclusion of women) there seems a shift happening in the visual identity of the “typical” online investor. Nevertheless this shift is not happening as quickly in the real world. One unhappy forum user shared on Personal Finance Canada this week her experiences with poor service and misinformation about ETF’s that suggests perhaps some people are reluctant to get past gender stereotypes at the expense of compromising customer satisfaction.

Flying in Coach

A newcomer to Wealthsimple – whose tagline is investing on Autopilot – took to the forums this week asking for advice on automated auto-rebalancing and fees. Wondering whether they should “copy the portfolios” themselves or put it in the hands of the online brokerage, the user put the two options up for debate.

Into the Close

That’s a wrap on a very eventful roundup on top of a very eventful year. With Christmas just around the corner, good luck to all the brave souls who live for thrill of the last minute gift chase! It’s been a great year here at so thanks to all the loyal readers and site visitors for making this year our best yet. We’re thrilled at what’s coming around the corner in 2019 and so to prepare we’ll be using the “down time” over the holidays to be doing some retooling and work behind the scenes.  On behalf of the whole team here at Sparx, have a very safe and merry Christmas and a happy New Year! Have a great weekend and we’ll see you again in early January.

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2018 Canadian Discount Brokerage Review & 2019 Preview

What a difference a year makes. In December of 2017, “investors” were HODLing for Bitcoin and weed stocks and were tripping over one another to open up new trading accounts as well as overloading trading systems and customer service lines at online brokerages across Canada.

While it didn’t catch everyone by total surprise, the online brokerage industry in Canada awoke in January to the undeniable reality that investors, in particular younger investors, are an important (and vocal) driver of the growth of online investing space in Canada.

The rise of the millennial investor in 2018 is one of the most important themes that emerged in the DIY investing space in Canada and underpins many of the milestones referenced in the latest series of submission from Canada’s online brokerages for the 2018/2019 edition of the ‘look back and look ahead’ series.

From the desire to participate in exciting online investing stories to the technology and experience that these digitally savvy and untethered investors expect, to prices they’re willing to pay for trading commissions, the impact of millennial investors to the online investing industry is staggering.

Canada’s discount brokerages certainly have their work cut out for them.

They have to balance catering to a very important group of older clients who have different preferences than another group of younger, and not yet as affluent, clients. All the while, they have to do so in the face of falling commission prices, increasing competition and higher technology spends.

So, how did Canada’s online brokerages fare in 2018 and what are they saying about 2019?

Theme 1: Digitization is Accelerating

Looking back on 2018 and into 2019, it is clear that Canadian online brokerages are moving more quickly and efficiently at creating a fully digital experience for online investors.

Online account opening has been a game changer for those discount brokerages who’ve rolled this feature out and has become a priority feature to deploy in 2019 for those yet to do so. Increased spending on technology, as well as creating agile teams mean online brokerages are starting to function more like tech companies in their pace and approach to change. As a result, they’re starting to catch up to the robo-advisors that have, up until recently, enjoyed the unencumbered digital edge that comes with building technology enterprises from the ground up.

Theme 2: Barriers are Dropping

Another way in which the rise of the millennial investor has impacted online brokerages in 2018 is the improved accessibility to online investing. Aside from technology improvements, there have concerted efforts to deliver accessible (and original) content about investing, notably from the largest players in the space, TD Direct Investing and RBC Direct Investing, as well as reductions in pricing for trading commissions.

Bank-owned brokerages, like CIBC Investor’s Edge, introduced young investor pricing on trading commissions while others, like National Bank Direct Brokerage, lowered the threshold to qualify for their commission-free trade offer down to $5,000.

Although it may not have been a direct catalyst in 2018, Canada’s online brokerages are also actively bracing for commission-free trading coming from Wealthsimple Trade. As this edition goes to publication, Virtual Brokers just launched a new, lower standard commission rate, which makes theirs one of the lowest for Canadian DIY investors.

Theme 3: Go Big or Go Home

If pressures to innovate with technology, and deliver more for less are headwinds, the counter to those is scale. Specifically, when it comes to being able to provide a robust online brokerage experience, size is beginning to matter.

Consolidation in the online brokerage space in late 2017 and through 2018 saw several important online brokerages merge or be acquired by larger entities. The result, independent or non-bank online brokerages became much better funded and are now even more formidable competitors to larger bank-owned brokerages.

In 2018, Jitneytrade was acquired by Canaccord, and in an exclusive announcement in their submission, they’re announcing a new direction and push towards mainstream investors, including a feature set that would put them on par with many existing online brokerages (and perhaps ahead of others).

The merger between Qtrade Investor and Credential Direct under the umbrella of Desjardins-backed Aviso Wealth has created an exceptionally strong competitor that has the scale and focus to hold its own in the bank-owned brokerage market.

CI Financial’s acquisition of BBS Securities, parent to Virtual Brokers, and robo-advisor WealthBar has created a significant online investing product suite for other online investing firms to now contend with.

Finally, Wealthsimple’s launch of Wealthsimple Trade that will let investor’s trade commission-free was a massive bet that this “no cost” model could work in much the same way as it has for Robinhood in the US. Backed by Power Financial, this challenger-brand in the managed wealth space is now hoping to disrupt the DIY market as well.

Although subtle, it is also interesting to note that unlike in previous years, online brokerages this year were much less shy to disclose or advertise how many online trading accounts they have as well as the assets under management present at their firms. Online brokerages like Questrade, CIBC Investor’s Edge, and TD Direct Investing, for example, shared a bit more openly the size and scale of their online brokerage client base.

Shift Happens

While the old paradigm in financial services was about permanency the new paradigm appears to be adaptability.

It is our view at SparxTrading that as financial services companies continue to digitize, they will undoubtedly also adopt a technology company-like approach, communicating about (and subsequently delivering on) improvements and enhancements will increasingly be the metric of choice for younger investors looking to choose an online brokerage.

In other words, how “innovative” an online brokerage is will start to matter more as pricing comes down and competition increases. In a constantly and rapidly changing landscape, the challenge to Canadian online brokerages is whether they evolve with it without reducing the perceived quality.

Before diving in to this year’s submissions, we’d like to thank all of the online brokerages for sharing their updates and forecasts for Canadian DIY investors. This look back on 2018 and preview to 2019 offers a unique window into each of the organizations who participated and gives DIY investors another important set of data points with which to make their decisions around who to choose when opening an online brokerage account.

Now without further ado, below is the list of Canadian online brokerage’s who’ve participated in the look back to 2018 and look ahead to 2019. Click on the links to go directly to each submission or use the page numbers to navigate between them.

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Discount Brokerage Weekly Roundup – December 14, 2018

If there’s one place in Canada that should be prepared to handle the rain, it’s Vancouver. And yet, even on the We(s)t Coast, this past week has shown that sometimes, when it rains, it really does pour. As it turns out, if you’re an otter, however, Vancouver is shaping up to be a pretty sweet place to hang out. CFO’s of major Chinese telecom companies, however, not so much. Like this past week in Vancouver, there has been a torrential downpour of information across the online investing world and it looks like there’s even more coming.

So, even though we can’t boil the ocean, in this edition of the roundup we nonetheless wanted to provide a solid run down of what crossed our radar this week, sprinkle in some analysis and for the faithful readers of the roundup, provide an exclusive preview of the look back/look ahead piece. As usual, there’s also an interesting selection of DIY investor tweets and forum posts to round things out.

Virtual Brokers Drops Commission Prices

There’s no question that things are busy across the online brokerage space heading into the end of the year. In the midst of all that flurry, however, there was a very important change that took place at Virtual Brokers at the close of market on Thursday (December 13th) and the start of trading on Friday, rain wasn’t the only thing coming down, commission prices did also. Namely, the commission structure for Virtual Brokers has now changed to as low as $1.99 commission per trade (technically per ticket – more on that in a moment).

That’s right Virtual Brokers now offers one of the lowest (until Wealthsimple Trade goes fully live to the general public) trading commissions for equities and options trading. The new pricing structure is $0.01 per share with a minimum charge of $1.99 per ticket up to a maximum commission charge of $7.99 per ticket. For active traders, defined as those who made 150 or more trades in the past quarter, the price changes to $3.99 flat per ticket

While it does benefit passive or minimally active traders, this is a huge development for very active traders. To understand why, it’s important to know the difference between “trades” and “tickets.”

A ticket refers to a collection of trades on the same side (either buy or sell) on the same day for the same stock. An example can help clarify.

Let’s say trader of TSLA purchases 3 separate orders of 200 shares a piece of the stock at multiple points in the day. Those 3 trades amount to 600 shares. Assuming they were all routed through the same market, those 3 trades would be on the same ticket because they’re the same stock, same direction, same day. At $0.01 per share x 600 shares, that’s $6.00 in commission charges. If on that same day a trader wanted to then sell 100 shares, that would be 1 trade which would also be one ticket at the $0.01 per share – which works out to $1.00 however the minimum commission charge is $1.99 so the final commission charge would be $1.99.

Unlike almost all other online brokerages (with the exception of Jitneytrade for example), using tickets instead of trades means that clients have to do a bit more math to truly understand the commission costs.

That said, if there’s one thing active or day traders are not afraid of, it’s a little order tracking, especially for a flat fee of trading that could be as low as $3.99 for an unlimited number of shares. In fact, for ETF swing traders the math is even more compelling – purchases of ETFs are free at Virtual Brokers so long as they are held for a minimum of one business day, which means anyone who is on the standard plan would only pay a max of $7.99 for a round trip on an ETF trade (assuming all units were sold same day). For passive rebalancing – especially for smaller accounts, this is also a great score as selling 200 shares of an ETF costs $2.00 in commission charges.

Clearly, in the commission price pool, Virtual Brokers has just made a massive splash.

Unlike lesser known online brokerages, Virtual Brokers has the benefit of having been featured in the Globe and Mail’s online brokerage rankings, including having achieved top online brokerage or a high finish for several years in a row.

Although prior to this move Virtual Brokers’ popularity was waning, they are certain to get the attention of investors of all stripes – but especially the active ones – who will now likely take a serious look at an online trading account with a provider that has professional grade platforms and the pricing to match.

It will only be a matter of time until word spreads among investors and if/when Virtual Brokers decides to advertise this widely – other brokers will be racing to figure out how to catch up.

Back to the Future: A Preview of the Look Back on 2018 & Look Ahead to 2019

From outages & outrage in early 2018, online account opening landing at TD Direct Investing, new website roll outs at BMO InvestorLine, Questrade and National Bank Direct Brokerage, and so many interesting promotions and deals, there was a lot that took place at Canada’s discount brokerages this past year.

We could go on (and on) about these developments (which we will next week!) but for the moment, we’re excited to hand over the spotlight to Canada’s online brokerages themselves to see what they had to say about 2018 and what they’re doing next in 2019.

Readers of the roundup will get a first look at this amazing edition of the Look Back/Look Ahead. Why is it so amazing? Without being too biased, firstly it offers a unique window into hearing from Canadian online brokerages themselves, in many cases directly from the leaders of the organizations that Canadian DIY investors entrust their business to. It helps to know and understand the vision these organizations have for building online brokerages that are suited for today’s world as well as tomorrow’s.

Second, this is a chance to spot interesting trends in the year that past as well as in what is coming around the corner at many online brokers. With RRSP season about to ramp up, consumers will be very hungry for information that helps them better understand the decision to work with a particular online brokerage. While there are rankings or ratings, those are generally focused on past performance. The look ahead component this year offers a fascinating window into what 2019 is going bring for DIY investors in terms of new features, technology enhancements, pricing (potentially) and more.

Finally, this particular edition has exclusive information on how the landscape of online brokerages will have another competitor to contend with this year. That’s right, one of the biggest stories in this year’s series is the upcoming launch of a ‘dark horse’ competitor. It’s not Wealthsimple Trade – who’s commission-free trading is certainly going to make waves, but rather an existing online brokerage who has some very ambitious plans. Who is this mystery online brokerage? Tune into Sparx next week to find out!

To provide some more intrigue, here is the list of online brokerages who we received submissions from and who will be featured in this upcoming year in review & preview to next year piece:

Also new for readers this year will be a digital magazine format that provides another way to experience this informative and unique piece. Here’s a preview of the cover art:

This format is the first from SparxTrading and is also a reflection of our growing team and focus on delivering great DIY-investor information about Canadian online brokerages.

Since you’ve read this far here are some early teasers from three firms covered in the look back on 2018 & look ahead pieces for 2019:

  • CIBC Investor’s Edge: Invested in online education content, young investors and trading platforms in 2018; for next year (and beyond) enhanced trading & reporting features
  • Qtrade Investor: Listening to clients helped drive improvements in service & support, financial planning tools and access to premium market research; coming up, big technology enhancements including mobile improvements
  • National Bank Direct Brokerage: Enhancements to the website, promotional offers and special educational events provided improved user experience; coming in the new year are new trading features and improved online account opening experiences.

Stay tuned!

Lightning Roundup

Here are some interesting online brokerage stories that crossed our radar this week.

Robinhood Online Brokerage Launches Banking Feature

The US-based zero-commission online brokerage continues to make waves in the online investing and financial services space. This week they took a literal swipe at the banking industry by launching checking & savings accounts that pay 3% interest to users. That, according to CNBC, is more than 30x the national average. Check out this interesting interview that has an ironic moment talking about technical glitches.

CI Financial Acquires Wealthbar

After acquiring BBS Securities, parent of Virtual Brokers, CI Financial is again going shopping just ahead of the holidays with an acquisition of Vancouver-based robo-advisor Wealthbar. This acquisition provides an interesting spectrum of services for CI Financial as they will now be equipped to provide direct online investing as well as digital advisor services.

Scotia iTRADE Movie Deal

With more foot traffic passing through downtown Toronto’s underground PATH, it was an opportune time for Scotia iTRADE to launch a short promotion for 2000 SCENE points for a deposit of $5,000. We’ve spotted ice cream in the summer, popcorn in the fall and now hot drinks with winter around the corner.

Questrade Spreading Holiday Cheer

We’ll end the lightning round with a feel-good move by Questrade. Spotted on their Twitter feed this week was a message stating that Questrade will donate a meal to the Daily Bread Food Bank for every retweet the message gets until the end of December. In addition, Questrade has also committed to providing a day’s worth of meals for every account opened with them in 2019. This is a great example of corporate social responsibility in action and gives DIY investors who open an account with Questrade something extra to feel good about while they’re doing it.


Discount Brokerage Tweets of the Week

From the Forums

Questwealth Query

One user took to the Personal Finance Canada forum on reddit this week with a question on growth portfolios for their RRSP. With the user considering a switch to Questwealth, read what helpful advice was given on how to dissect some “complicated” portfolios.

Checking in on Wealthsimple

Robinhood’s recent announcement of checking and savings accounts with 3% earnings and no fees, led the discussion on to whether Wealthsimple Trade, the commission-free trading Canadian analogue, would also follow suit as their “next logical step”. Read more in this thread from Personal Finance Canada forum.

Into the Close

That’s another rocky week in the bag for the bulls. Ironically the Christmas colours of red and green are flashing red as major support levels are being challenged. Of course, it’s all a matter of perspective at this point as bargain hunters continue to get more and more excited for interesting entry points. Speaking of interesting entry points, if you’re out holiday shopping in the malls, may the parking gods be forever in your favour! Have a great weekend!

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Discount Brokerage Weekly Roundup – December 7, 2018

Only in the stock market does everybody get more when everybody gets less. The cuts in oil supply provided a much-needed relief to an otherwise dour stretch into the final month of the year. With most of the gains of 2018 now erased on major indices and selloffs despite good jobs news, the good news is, it could be worse.

Fortunately, there is actually good news for online investors to be had. In this edition of the roundup we review the latest crop of deals that will add some Christmas cheer for DIY investors hunting for a great deal on an online trading account. Of course heading into the end of a year, it’s also a timely opportunity to review a portfolio – which is what we do by taking stock of the year that passed and what’s coming around the corner (hint: it’s exciting!). As always, we capture the reactions and questions of online investors on the forums and on Twitter.

December Deals

It’s the holiday season, and, true to form, there are lots of presents and still a few surprises left for Canadian DIY investors. December kicked off with a healthy count of 25 discount brokerage deals and promotions ranging from cash back deals and commission-free trades to transfer offers.

The big stories in this month’s deals section include the return of Desjardins Online Brokerage’s commission credit offer (along with some festive imagery befitting the season); the promotional offer accompanying the launch of RBC InvestEase as well as the return of Scotia iTRADE to the deals section with a cash back or commission-free trade offer.

With participation by Canadian discount brokerages at a healthy level, DIY investors hunting for a bargain on an online trading account certainly have a lot to choose from.

Of course, December wouldn’t be complete without a few surprises. There are already whispers of two online brokerages keen on launching some interesting promotions. Whether they get here in time for Christmas is a bit of a jump ball at the moment, however it’s a safe assumption that those brokerages currently on the sidelines without a commission-free trade or cash back offer won’t be staying off the promotions field for too much longer.

As a segue into the next story, it’s important to remember that last year at this time, the world was going crazy about “investing” in cryptocurrency and marijuana stocks. It’s likely that the enthusiasm for trading these was amplified across the holiday season with friends and family gathering to talk about these “investments” – so there’s still a good chance that, in addition to talking turkey, there’ll also be talk of investing.

We’re also really excited to see what happens to the promotional landscape next year as Wealthsimple Trade starts to roll out live trading accounts. Competing against commission free trading will be a challenge for the incumbent online brokerages, however our bet is that many DIY investors would still be open to cash back offers and incentives which is something Wealthsimple Trade may find difficult to match (since they’re already taking a hit on commission fees). Making a few trades a year (even at a “nominal” cost) may not be worth as much as the cash incentive on the way in.

In light of that, one interesting scenario that could play out in 2019 is that strong cash back (or better commission credit offers) could majorly slow the roll of Wealthsimple Trade. At that point it will be a faceoff between low pricing and design technology (i.e. user experience) and a mature functionality in the form trading platforms with news, research, screeners and more.

Looking Back & Looking Ahead

With just about three weeks until the end of 2018, it’s an opportune moment to reflect back on the year that was and where things are going in 2019 for online investors.

Last year at this time we were knee deep in crypto mania; it’s a good thing weed has been legalized because there are some people who are going to definitely want/need to chill after the drop in both cannabis and crypto stocks over the past few months.

Also around this time last year, SparxTrading pulled together a collection of 9 voices from across the Canadian online brokerage space to provide a platform for them to share what the year was like in their own words and what DIY investors could look forward to in 2018. In that piece, we highlighted three important themes that seemed to emerge from all of the submissions:

  1. There’s a technological arms race
  2. Delivering more value to DIY investors
  3. Focus on better trading experiences

Although these three items are interrelated, we saw evidence of distinct activities to address these themes over the course of the year.

From multimillion-dollar investments in the technology stack from firms like TD Direct Investing, to the adoption of youth or ‘student’ friendly pricing at major bank-owned online brokerage CIBC Investor’s Edge to trading platforms to roll outs of upgrades of custom-built trading platforms at Questrade there were numerous examples of these themes unfolding at many of Canada’s online brokerages.

One thing that also stood out over the past year was the consolidation of the online brokerage market.

After the merger of Qtrade Investor and Credential Direct under the umbrella of Aviso Wealth, the acquisition of BBS Securities by CI Investments and the acquisition of Jitneytrade by Canaccord Financial, the war chests of non-bank owned online brokers have gotten much stronger. The industry as a whole seems to be in a ‘rebuilding’ phase – with investments in their business and technology taking place to enable them to serve investors of the future. Case in point, the launch of robo-advisors/digital advice platforms at RBC and the announced roll out of one at TD clearly signal this as a product line ‘must have’ for 2019 and beyond. They’ll have their work cut out for them, though, as Vanguard is also reportedly pursuing a launch of a robo-advisor as well.

Coming up next week we’ll launch the online brokerage look back on 2018 and look ahead to 2019 and this is definitely (and literally) going to be a page-turner.

With an exciting new look and rendering for this unique piece, interesting new themes on where online brokerages are focused as well as the unique opportunity to hear what online brokers have to say about themselves and what they’re looking forward to in 2019, we’re thrilled to be rolling this out. Be sure to follow SparxTrading on Twitter for exclusive sneak peeks at this year’s set.

Lightning Roundup

There were more noteworthy developments that took place this past week in the online brokerage space here in Canada as well as in the US.

Interview with Interactive Brokers Founder

Earlier this week, founder and CEO of Interactive Brokers, Thomas Peterffy was interviewed at the Goldman Sachs Financial Services Conference. In this informal fireside chat, there were a number of very interesting nuggets shared by Peterffy.

The first was his perspective on the “zero commission” trading trend emerging in the US online brokerage market. He specifically mentioned Robinhood and JP Morgan in this respect but he had some rather ominous words for the latter. Peterffy mentioned that JP Morgan’s decision to also do so was “a big mistake” and that ultimately “they will regret this.” Within that conversation about commission-free trading, he also laid out the simple truth to online brokerages which is that they need to make money or break even in order to exist so the money will have to come from somewhere – including with administration fees. This could be an important consideration for those online investors contemplating platforms like Wealthsimple Trade or who might be hoping for online brokerages to lower their trading commission pricing.

Another major development shared by Peterffy is that as of January 1st 2019, Interactive Brokers will be paying interest out to accounts with balances underneath $100,000. Specifically, the interest paid on an account will be indexed against the $100,000 threshold so that investors who, for example, have a cash balance of $50,000 will get an interest rate that is half the rate of an account with $100,000 or more in cash. This will definitely spur a larger segment of investors to consider kicking the tires on Interactive Brokers who simply want a better deal on their uninvested cash.

Mobile Trading Apps Spinning Their Wheels

Interactive Brokers was once again in the spotlight but this time in Canada where financial research firm Surviscor released the findings of their mobile online brokerage experience study. The mobile trading experience at Interactive Brokers blew the doors off its competitors according to the Surviscor study.

According to the rankings, Interactive Brokers’ mobile trading experience scored a 94% followed next by Questrade at 64% and then BMO InvestorLine at 57%. Perhaps most surprising is the number of firms who scored under 50% (8 out 11 firms). Desjardins Online Brokerage’s mobile trading experience ranked last with a score of 24%.

Glenn LaCoste, President and CEO of Surviscor cautioned that while the scores may appear shocking, that “it is important to understand that they do not reflect the overall merits of any of the firms. The take-away is that most industry firms fail to provide a seamless mobile accessible experience for the base online offering.”

Earlier this year, a similar sentiment was echoed by J.D. Power in their Canadian Self-Directed Investor Satisfaction Study in which Mike Foy, Senior Director of the Wealth Management Practice at J.D. Power stated “Investment firms in Canada, in general, are significantly behind the curve when it comes to their mobile app offerings, capabilities and customer engagement.”

From the Forums


Vanguard Canada is the latest wealth manager to join the robo-advisor phenomena. The news hit the forums this week as one user kicked off a discussion on the global investment company’s choice to compete in the growing market. Check out the discussion points here.

Passive or Active Retirement

One forum user took to personal finance Canada on reddit this week, wondering if a DIY investment approach would be the way to go after years of a passive strategy. With a personal aversion to financial matters at the age of 60, this proves an interesting post both for those looking for advice on what to do with their finances after retirement and for those who are curious to know if they’re on the right track.

Discount Brokerage Tweets of the Week

Into the Close

With just over two weeks to go before Christmas, the procrastinators among us are still not worried about getting that great gift in time for the holidays. For the traders, however, that deadline day for making trades in 2018 is coming. Circle December 27th as the final day to make trades in Canada that will settle in 2018 (Dec. 31st). Speaking of settling and end games – now that the weekend is here, it’s a great time to relax and marvel at the great indoors, starting with a trailer for the Avengers Endgame. Have a great weekend!

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Discount Brokerage Deals & Promotions – December 2018

*Updated Dec. 21st* Even though the holiday season is just around the corner, there’s another season that online investors and brokerages look to for big gifts: RSP season. There are no red-nosed reindeer or chimney scaling figures, but there is lots to cheer about in terms of promotional offers that are now available for DIY investors shopping for an online investing account.

This month, in addition to the strong selection of discount brokerage deals, there is a shiny new offer from a shiny new bank-owned player in the robo-advisor space, RBC InvestEase, which rolled out in late November. RBC’s InvestEase joins BMO’s SmartFolio in the deals and promotions category below.

The start of the month also sees Desjardins Online Brokerage’s commission credit offer come back in time for the holidays. Terms and conditions for the 1% commission credit offer have been updated and the official expiry date bumped to December 31st.

Looking across the board, there is a strong selection of offers from a number of bank-owned brokerages. Scotia iTRADE jumped back into the promotions arena last month with a relatively aggressive cash-back or commission-free trade offer. For DIY investors, that’s great news.

Unlike last year’s feverish push into all things weed and crypto, this year presents a mixed bag of economic uncertainty and no real strong momentum story.

On the one hand that might present a challenge to Canada’s discount brokerages in terms of the volume and enthusiasm for online brokerage accounts. On the other hand, with so many investors likely torched by dipping into crypto or who’ve seen the run-in weed stocks take their course, it might just be the perfect storm to keep things simple with a robo-advisor or passive DIY investment strategy. If last year was any lesson, families and friends talk finance over the holidays, so the timing is right for online brokerages to be visible in the conversation about finance and investing.

The bottom line for Canadian discount brokers is that they can’t count on the massive enthusiasm to push online investors their way, there has to be real value and incentive to pull investors in. We’re looking for those brokerages currently on the sidelines to step into the deals mix with some interesting offers soon. And, if the timing is right, a well-structured offer will find its way into a turkey dinner conversation or two.

Expired Offers

There were no online brokerage offers that expired at the end of November.

Extended Offers

The famously long-standing offer from Desjardins Online Brokerage made an official comeback as the terms and conditions for the popular 1% commission credit deal were updated on the Desjardins website. The original deadline of the offer was October 31st and for a good portion of November those terms remained in place even though the link was still live indicating that it was awaiting some kind of decision. Fortunately for investors the deal is available now until the end of December. This cautious extension is not unusual but with rival National Bank Direct Brokerage also offering up a promotion that runs into 2019, it is unlikely Desjardins Online Brokerage will enter the new year without a compelling deal for DIY investors.

New Offers

*Updated Dec. 21st: TD Direct Investing has launched a new trading commission rebate offer for DIY investors just before the holidays. This tiered trading commission promotion offers rebates ranging from 25 trades to 200 trades for deposits ranging between $15,000 and $100,000+. There is a twist to this offer which we haven’t seen quite often, namely that registration is required to qualify for the offer. To qualify, accounts must be opened before March 1st, 2019 and commission rebates apply to trades between the time of account opening and July 1st, 2019. See table below for more information. *

Not only do we have a new offer in the Robo-advisor/digital-advice segment, it happens to be from a new player in the space. RBC’s InvestEase platform officially went public and kicked off with a waiver of management fee (normally 0.5%) until October 31, 2019 with no cap on the amount of assets invested. With Questrade’s recent drop in management fee, the competition for investor assets is intensifying and a new entrant into the passive investing space with discount of this magnitude will get the attention of online investors (and competitors).

Discount Brokerage Deals

  1. Cash Back/Free Trade/Product Offer Promotions
  2. Referral Promotions
  3. Transfer Fee Promotions
  4. Contests & Other Offers
  5. Digital Advice + Roboadvisor Promotions

Cash Back/Free Trade/Product Offer Promotions

Company Brief Description Minimum Deposit Amount Commission/Cash Offer/Promotion Type Time Limit to Use Commission/Cash Offer Details Link Deadline
Jitney Trade A Sparx Trading exclusive offer! Use the promo code “Sparx Trading” when signing up for a new account with Jitneytrade and receive access to their preferred pricing package. n/a Discounted Commission Rates none For more details click here none
Open and fund a new account (TFSA, Margin or RRSP) with at least $1,000 and you may be eligible to receive $88 in commission credits (up to 17 commission-free trades). Use promo code SPARX88 when signing up. Be sure to read terms and conditions carefully. $1,000 $88 commission credit 60 days Access this offer by clicking here: $88 commission-credit offer . For full terms and conditions, click here. none
Open and fund a new account (TFSA, Margin or RRSP) with at least $1,000 and you may be eligible to receive 5 commission-free trades. Use promo code 5FREETRADES when signing up. Be sure to read terms and conditions carefully. $1,000 5 commission-free trades 60 days 5 commission-free trade offer December 31, 2018
Open and fund a new account with at least $5,000 at National Bank Direct Brokerage and you may be eligible to receive up to 50 commission free equity trades, which are good for up to one year. Use promo code: FREE50 when applying. Be sure to read offer terms and conditions for full details. $5,000 50 commission-free trades 12 months National Bank Direct Brokerage 50 Free Trade Offer April 30, 2019
Scotia iTrade Open a new account or fund an existing account with A) $10,000; B) $25,000; C) $50,000; D) $100,000 E) $250,000; F) $500,000 or G) $1M+ and you may be eligible to receive either A)20; B) 50; C) 100; D) 200; or E), F), G) 300 commission free trades; or B) $100; C) $200; D) $500; E) $800; F) $1100 or G) $1500. Use promo code 19CA for the cash back or 19FT for the free trades offers. Be sure to read the terms and conditions for full details. A) $10,000 B) $25,000 C) $50,000 D) $100,000 E) $250,000 F) $500,000 G) $1M+ For cash back: A) $0 B) $100 C) $200 D) $500 E) $800 F) $1100 G) $1500 For commission-free trades: A) 20 B) 50 C) 100 D) 200 E) 300 F) 300 G) 300 For cash back: Cash will be deposited by July, 2019. For commission free trades: 120 days to use trades from date of account funding. iTRADE commission-free trade + cash back offer March 31, 2019
Disnat Desjardins Online Brokerage is offering new clients 1% of assets transferred into the new account in the form of commission credits (to a maximum value of $1,000). Minimum qualifying deposit is $10,000. To qualify, individuals will have to call 1-866-873-7103 and mention promo code DisnatTransfer or email: [email protected]. See details link for more info. $10,000 1% of assets transferred in the form of commission-credits (max credits: $1,000) 6 months Disnat 1% Commission Credit Promo December 31, 2018
Open a new qualifying TD Direct Investing account by March 1, 2019 with a minimum deposit of A) $15,000; B) $25,000; C) $50,000 or D) $100,000+ and you may be eligible to receive commission rebates for A) 25; B) 50; C) 100 or D) 200 trades. To qualify online, individuals must register here and open the account by March 1, 2019. See terms and conditions for full details. A) $15,000 B) $25,000 C) $50,000 D) $100,000+ A) 25 B) 50 C) 100 D) 200 Trades made prior to July 1, 2019 will be eligible for rebate. TD Direct Investing Winter Promotion March 1, 2019
Open and fund a new qualifying account with CIBC Investor’s Edge with a deposit of at least A) $25,000; B) $50,000 or C) $100,00+ and you may be eligible to receive a cash back bonus of A) $100; B) $200 or C) $400. This offer is open to both new and existing clients. Use offer code SPARX18 when opening the account to obtain this offer. Be sure to read full terms and conditions for complete details. A) $25,000 B) $50,000 C) $100,000 A) $100 B) $200 C) $400 Cash back will be deposited on the week of March 24, 2019 for transfers received by December 31, 2018; transfers received after December 31, 2018 but before May 1, 2019 will receive cash back on the week of July 1, 2019. CIBC Investor’s Edge Cash Back Promo March 24, 2019
Open and fund a new qualifying account with at least $25,000 and you may qualify for one month of unlimited commission-free trades and up to one month free of an advanced data package. Use promo code ADVANTAGE14 when opening a new account. Be sure to read terms and conditions for full details. $25,000 commission-free trades for 1 month + 1 month of advanced data. 1 month Active Trader Program December 31, 2018
BMO InvestorLine Open a new account or fund an existing account at BMO InvestorLine with new assets worth at least A) $50,000; B) $200,000; C) $400,000 or D) $600,000+ and you may be eligible to receive 30 commission-free equity trades AND a cash back reward of up to A) $100; B) $300; C) $600 or D) $1000. Use promo code SPARXCASH when registering to qualify. Be sure to read full terms and conditions. A) $50,000 B) $200,000 C) $400,000 D) $600,000+ 30 commission-free equity trades plus: A) $100 B) $300 C) $600 D) $1000 commission-free equity trades can be used in February & March of 2019. Cash back will be deposited the week of July 15, 2019. BMO InvestorLine Fall 2018 Campaign January 2, 2019

Expired Offers

Last Updated: Dec. 21, 2018 16:00 PT

Referral Promotions

Company Brief Description Minimum Deposit Amount Incentive Structure Time Limit to Use Commission/Cash Offer Deposit Details Link Deadline
Refer a friend to Questrade and when they open an account you receive $25 cash back and they receive either A) $25; B) $50; C) $75; D) $100; or E) $250 depending on the amount deposited amount. Enter code: 476104302388759 during account sign up to qualify. Be sure to read the terms and conditions for eligibility and additional bonus payment structure and minimum balance requirements. A) $1,000 B) $10,000 C) $25,000 D) $50,000 E) $100,000+ $25 cash back (for referrer per referral; $50 bonus cash back for every 3rd referral) For referred individuals: A) $25 cash back B) $50 cash back C) $75 cash back D) $100 cash back E) $250 cash back Cash deposited into Questrade billing account within 7 days after funding period ends (90 days) Refer a friend terms and conditions Code Number: 476104302388759 none
If you (an existing Qtrade Investor client) refer a new client to Qtrade Investor and they open an account with at least $1,000 the referrer and the referee may both be eligible to receive $25 cash. See terms and conditions for full details. $1,000 $25 cash back (for both referrer and referee) Cash deposited at the end of the month in which referee’s account funded Refer A Friend to Qtrade Investor none
Scotia iTrade If you refer a friend/family member who is not already a Scotia iTRADE account holder to them, both you and your friend get a bonus of either cash or free trades. You have to use the referral form to pass along your info as well as your friend/family members’ contact info in order to qualify. There are lots of details/conditions to this deal so be sure to read the details link. A) $10,000 B) $50,000+ A) You(referrer): $50 or 10 free trades; Your “Friend”: $50 or 10 free trades (max total value:$99.90) B) You(referrer): $100 cash or 50 free trades; Your “Friend”: $100 cash or 50 free trades (max total value: $499.50) 60 days Refer A Friend to Scotia iTrade tbd
BMO InvestorLine If you (an existing BMO InvestorLine client) refer a new client to BMO InvestorLine and they open an account with at least $5,000 the referrer and the referee may both be eligible to receive $50 cash. To qualify the referee must use the email of the referrer that is linked to their BMO InvestorLine account. See terms and conditions for full details. $5,000 You(referrer): $50; Your Friend(referee): $50 Payout occurs 45 days after minimum 90 day holding period (subject to conditions). BMO InvestorLine Refer-a-Friend January 2, 2019

Expired Offers

Last Updated: Dec. 1, 2018 22:55 PT

Transfer Fee Promotions

Company Brief Description Maximum Transfer Fee Coverage Amount Minimum Deposit Amount for Transfer Fee Eligibility Details Link Deadline
Transfer $15,000 or more into a new HSBC InvestDirect account and you may be eligible to have up to $152.55 in transfer fees covered. $152.55 $15,000 Confirmed via email contact with HSBC InvestDirect Rep. Contact client service for more information. none
Transfer $15,000 or more to Qtrade Investor from another brokerage and Qtrade Investor may cover up to $150 in transfer fees. See terms and conditions for more details. $150 $15,000 Transfer Fee Rebate none
Transfer $15,000 or more to RBC Direct Investing and they will pay up to $135 in transfer fees. $135 $15,000 Transfer Fee Rebate Details none
Transfer $20,000 or more to a National Bank Direct Brokerage account and they will pay up to $135 plus taxes in transfer fees. $135 $20,000 Transfer Fee Rebate none
Move your brokerage account to Questrade and they’ll cover the transfer-out fee up to $150. $150 $25,000 Transfer Fee Promo none
Transfer at least $25,000 or more in new assets to TD Direct Investing when opening a new account and you may qualify to have transfer fees reimbursed up to $150. Be sure to contact TD Direct Investing for further details. $150 $25,000 Contact client service for more information (1-800-465-5463). none
Transfer $25,000 or more into a CIBC Investor’s Edge account and they will reimburse up to $135 in brokerage transfer fees. Clients must call customer service to request rebate after transfer made. $135 $25,000 Confirmed with reps. Contact client service for more information (1-800-567-3343). none
Disnat Desjardins Online Brokerage is offering up to $150 to cover the cost of transfer fees from another institution. To be eligible, new/existing clients need to deposit $50,000 into a Desjardins Online Brokerage account. You’ll have to call 1-866-873-7103 and mention promo code DisnatTransfer. See details link for more info. $150 $50,000 Disnat 1% Commission Credit Promo December 31, 2018
BMO InvestorLine Open a new qualifying account with BMO InvestorLine or fund a qualifying existing account, by transferring in at least $200,000+ in net new assets and you may be eligible to have transfer fees covered up to $200. Use promo code SPARXCASH when signing up. Be sure to read the terms and conditions for more details on the offer. $200 $200,000 BMO InvestorLine Summer 2018 Campaign September 3, 2018

Expired Offers

Last Updated: Dec. 1, 2018 14:00 PT

Other Promotions

Company Brief Description Minimum Deposit Amount Required Details Link Deadline
Disnat Desjardins Online Brokerage, in conjunction with MoneyTalks, is offering 3 months of the “Inside Edge” investor information service to Desjardins Online Brokerage clients. Use promo code DESJ2016 during checkout to qualify. Be sure to read full terms and conditions for more information. n/a MoneyTalks Inside Edge Discount none
Disnat Desjardins Online Brokerage is offering $50 in commission credits for new Disnat Classic clients depositing at least $1,000. See terms and conditions for full details. $1,000 Broker@ge 18-30 Promotion none
Scotia iTrade Scotiabank StartRight customers can receive 10 commission-free trades when investing $1,000 or more in a new Scotia iTrade account. Trades are good for use for up to 1 year from the date the account is funded. Use promo code SRPE15 when applying (in English) or SRPF15 when applying in French. Be sure to read full terms and conditions for full details. $1,000 StartRight Free Trade offer none
Open and fund a new qualifying account with at least $5,000 at RBC Direct Investing and you may be eligible to receive up to 20 commission-free trades, which are good for up to one year. Use promo code MDFT8 to qualify. This promotion is being marketed towards healthcare workers, so be sure to review terms and conditions or speak to an RBC Direct Investing representative for full details. $5,000 RBC Direct Investing 20 Free Trade Offer Feb. 28, 2019

Expired Offers

Last Updated: Dec. 1, 2018 14:00PT

Digital Advice + Roboadvisor Promotions

Robo-advisor / Digital advisor Offer Type Offer Description Min. Deposit Reward / Promotion Promo Code Expiry Date Link
Discounted Management Open and fund a new Questrade Portfolio IQ account with a deposit of at least $1,000 and the first month of management will be free. For more information on Portfolio IQ, click the product link. $1,000 1st month no management fees KDKFNBBC None Questrade Portfolio IQ Promo Offer
Cash Back Open and fund a new or existing SmartFolio account with at least $1,000 and you could receive 0.5% cash back up to $1000. Use promo code PROMO1000 when opening a new account. See terms and conditions for full details. This offer can be combined with the refer-a-friend promotion. $1,000 0.5% cash back to a maximum of $1000. PROMO1000 January 2, 2019 SmartFolio Cash Back Promo
Discounted Management Open a new account with BMO SmartFolio and receive one year of management of up to $15,000 free. See offer terms and conditions for more details. $1,000 1 year no management fees STSF April 30, 2019 SmartFolio New Account Promotion
Cash Back – Referral BMO SmartFolio clients will receive $50 cash back for every friend or family member who opens and funds a new SmartFolio account. Friends and family referred to SmartFolio will receive $50 cash back for opening and funding an account, plus automatic enrollment into SmartFolio’s mass offer in market at the time. See offer terms and conditions for more details. $1,000 $50 cash back (referrer) $50 cash back (referee) Unique link generated from SmartFolio required. None SmartFolio Website
Discounted Management Open a new account with RBC InvestEase and the standard management fee will be waived until October 31, 2019. See offer terms and conditions for full details. $1,000 No management fees until October 31, 2019 None March 31, 2019 RBC InvestEase Pricing Details
Transfer Fee Coverage Transfer at least $25,000 into Virtual Wealth when opening a new account and you may be eligible to have up to $150 in transfer fees covered by Virtual Wealth. $25,000 up to $150 in transfer fees covered None None Contact customer service directly for more information.
Last Updated: Dec. 1, 2018 14:00 PT