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Discount Brokerage Weekly Roundup – December 21, 2020

The phrase that’s been a mantra for many of us in 2020 – aside from “You’re on mute” – has been “Is it over yet?” Finally, it’s a lot closer to being true than at any previous point in the year. Thank goodness. In keeping with the sentiment of a very long year, this end-of-year edition of the Weekly Roundup is itself longer than usual. Unlike 2020, however, it is intentionally long because so many interesting things took place.

Packaging so many big developments into one post was a challenge. So, for this final edition of the Roundup for the year, we offer up an homage to a movie franchise that seems to go on just about as long as 2020 has. This Fast and Furious edition of the Roundup recaps the year one quarter at a time. Keep reading for high-octane stories that powered the Weekly Roundup for the past year, including important feature releases, interesting trends, and the stories that were kind of a big deal.  In true Weekly Roundup form, we roll the credits on 2020 with DIY investor chatter from Twitter and the forums.

Buckle up, it’s going to be a wild ride.

Q1 2020: Everything Was Normal Until It Wasn’t

Looking back on the beginning of the year, the start to 2020 in the Canadian online brokerage space seemed pretty “normal” by most accounts.

One theme early in the year was pricing drops. Desjardins Online Brokerage, for example, significantly dropped their commission rates, especially for active investors, to under $1 per trade. Similarly, HSBC also teed up an offer for active investors: zero-commission pricing between April and December 2020. Although these two firms aren’t as well known in the Canadian online brokerage space as other mainstream firms or the big-five bank-owned online brokers, it was clear that commission pricing in 2020 would continue to be under pressure as smaller firms looked to gain market share. These moves were also timed around the start of the year because of the heightened interest in RSP accounts, and, as such, there would be a much larger audience of investors willing to consider these new pricing features. Interestingly, the rest of the Canadian online brokerage industry did not immediately move to lower commission prices. As it turned out, once the tsunami of investor demand for online brokerage accounts took hold, commission prices stayed largely untouched until the latter part of 2020.

Another important theme early in the year (prior to COVID-19 hitting with full force) was the release of online brokerage reviews and rankings. Both The Globe and Mail and Surviscor released their respective rankings of Canada’s online brokers in order to coincide with the time in the calendar when many DIY investors hunt out new online investing accounts and offers.

What stood out about the 2020 edition of The Globe and Mail online brokerage rankings (which happened to be the 21st edition of these rankings) was that a number of firms scored a respectable grade (B or better), but of the top three firms by letter grade, two of them were bank-owned online brokers: TD Direct Investing and Scotia iTrade. The firm that reappeared at the top of these rankings was Qtrade Investor, which earned an A+ rating overall. Ironically, TD Direct Investing suffered from a trading interruption (something that would become a lot more commonplace across the industry in 2020), and Scotia iTrade continued to face challenges responding to clients in a timely fashion over the phone.

In the Surviscor rankings, Qtrade Investor also took top spot, edging out Questrade and TD Direct Investing. Not to be outdone, Questrade earned a DALBAR award for client service, providing additional points for their brand in a year that started off strong in terms of rankings progress.

Of course, the major story during the first quarter of 2020 was COVID-19, and specifically how it roiled markets and caused a massive shock to trading systems, online brokerages, and DIY investors. For some, it was catastrophic, but to others, the opportunity of a lifetime. It was this latter group that won the day, however, as new investors jumped at the chance to invest in household-name stocks at incredible prices. Further, the “Robinhood effect” was cited as another reason the volatility seemed to skyrocket. The US online brokerage had moved to a largely commission-free model, and, as such, investors could “scalp” trade – making small and frequent trades – with no real downside (in terms of commission pricing). It turned out, however, that most online brokerage systems were not equipped to handle the surge in interest in trading combined with market volatility.

Some weird things happened. Among them, Wealthsimple Trade having to effectively halt new clients from being able to trade on their platform.

Major online brokerages also suffered trading platform downtime, slammed telephone reps, and the biggest surge in online brokerage account opening since the bitcoin craze in 2018. Oh, and they had to contend with all of this while being transitioned to a work-from-home model.

Also strange, people deciding to hoard toilet paper.

Q2 2020: Outages & Outrage

The start of the second quarter picked up right where the first ended, as things went from weird to certifiably insane. Volatility and trading volumes managed to take down trading systems at multiple Canadian bank-owned online brokerages, but that would not even be the weirdest thing to take place in April. As it turns out, prices for commodities, like barrels of oil, could not only fall to zero but also go negative.

Unfortunately for traders – and especially for Interactive Brokers clients – the oil contract price going negative wound up impairing (if not wiping out) a significant number of traders, and that was because of a programming glitch on Interactive Brokers’ platform that didn’t account for prices of contracts being able to turn negative. All told, Interactive Brokers ended up taking a $90 million loss because of the exceptionally rare move to reimburse traders caught offside by this issue. Of course, while embarrassing for Interactive Brokers, these were truly unusual times, and there were other traders who didn’t see it coming.

Nonetheless, Interactive Brokers also had a huge silver lining after the oil futures contract fiasco: They experienced record-breaking new-account growth. As the canary in the coal mine, Interactive Brokers telegraphed exceptionally strong account openings (+22% year over year) and revenue gains from the sheer volume of activity taking place. In fact, there were more accounts opened at Interactive Brokers in April 2020 than in the last six months of 2019 combined.

Against the backdrop of market volatility, another online brokerage ranking was published, this time from J.D. Power. The Self-Directed Investor Satisfaction Study was revealing in that even before many of the issues that came to light during the heavy volatility in the markets, the Canadian online brokerage industry was starting to slip in terms of investor satisfaction. The report card showed that online brokerages fared worse in 2020 than they did in 2019 when it came to overall satisfaction.

Questrade managed to take top spot in the rankings for 2020, an accolade that is the result of a long journey of constant improvement. Conversely, the bottom four online brokerages in Canada, according to J.D. Power, were from the big five: RBC Direct Investing, TD Direct Investing, CIBC Investor’s Edge, and Scotia iTrade, respectively, were the firms that scored the lowest on the 2020 edition of this ranking. One telling stat was that website stability and accessibility were areas where online investors felt underserved, with 46% of those polled experiencing a problem with their provider’s website.

Finally, the major development in the second quarter of 2020 (outside of COVID-19) was the death of George Floyd and the igniting of social justice movements in North America (and across the world) to a point not seen since the US Civil Rights movement. Though the stock markets were largely insulated from the headline risk, major names in the public markets (like Nike) took very public stands on the death of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement. One potentially coincidental shift that we noted in the websites of two online brokerages at this time was the use of more inclusive and diverse imagery. What a DIY investor was “supposed to look like” changed in terms of the imagery used on the websites of Interactive Brokers and Virtual Brokers. Other online brokerages in Canada had already made the shift to more inclusive imagery, so it was nice to see these online brokers take a step in the right direction when it comes to representation.

Another important note on Virtual Brokers emerged during this time, which was that the parent company, CI Financial, had opted to consolidate the “Virtual Brokers” name under CI Direct Investing along with another key name in the digital investing space: WealthBar. Although no definitive timetable was published on this move, it means that a long-standing name in the online brokerage space will disappear, and DIY investors will have to learn another new name. To make matters even more challenging, the new online brokerage that formed from the acquisition of Jitneytrade by Canaccord is named CG Direct. These two names are bound to confuse DIY investors even more than the current challenge of sorting out Qtrade Investor and Questrade.

Q3 2020: Sun and Shade

With the nicer weather and relative calm in stock markets, it seemed like an opportune moment for several online brokerages to make big announcements and feature enhancements/changes. And there were a few.

Starting in June, TD Direct Investing announced updates to its mobile app that focused on enhancements to investor education. Interestingly, as it came to be seen later in the year, this move toward bolstering investor education was both a timely one, given the number of new investors coming into the stock market, and a well-calculated one, supporting the big reveal that would come in Q4. The trend of improvements to mobile trading experiences was something that surfaced several times in the year, notably with RBC Direct Investing as well as Virtual Brokers.

One of the biggest announcements to cross the tape was that Wealthsimple Trade would be launching cryptocurrency trading in Canada. Offering trading in both Bitcoin and Ethereum, this move by the “zero-commission” online broker in Canada was yet another step to appeal to a younger, more tech-savvy audience who wanted both an easier way to access these digital currency instruments and a more user-friendly way. This pilot program will ultimately help to inform whether cryptocurrency trading can be properly regulated by financial authorities in Canada. In 2020, Wealthsimple Trade continued to lean into its identity as a “Robinhood Canada,” given the success of the US online brokerage in winning over new investors to its platform.

One big feature roll-out that didn’t quite go as planned was from CIBC Investor’s Edge. Unfortunately, the feature upgrade’s first attempt resulted in trading interruptions that, in turn, prompted the online broker to offer commission-free trades to those who were impacted by the outage. Eventually, however, a new online trading experience was rolled out – in part – and set the stage for further improvements to the user experience.

After a very quiet stretch, signs of life in the deals and promotions section started to appear. National Bank Direct Brokerage launched a sizable commission-free trade offer, and, interestingly, Wealthsimple Trade launched a contest with a draw for $5,000 in cash. What made the latter offer stand out is that it was an early signal that despite offering zero-commission trades, Wealthsimple Trade also had to undertake some further effort to entice new clients to their platform (something that showed up again in Q4).

Q4 2020: A Few Good Mends

It’s hard to believe that the fourth quarter was actually just one quarter, given how much happened. The resurgence of COVID-19 via the “second wave,” the huge rally in the stock market to set new highs, and the US federal election all would have been massive stories on their own but, combined, they made it nearly impossible to keep from watching the news.

Despite all of the negative headlines, what did emerge for online brokerages and DIY investors was an interesting convergence of events.

While the first portion of the year showed unprecedented strength of interest by online investors to open up accounts and trade, by the time the fourth quarter rolled around, things had levelled off somewhat. Nevertheless, Canadian online brokerages, much like their US counterparts, were seeing elevated trading activity and, unlike their peers in the US, were generating significant revenue as a result. The fourth quarter in the year is also the time when online brokers in Canada typically start their ramp-up to campaigns for RSP season. What resulted from these events taking place simultaneously was that the deals and promotions activity in November just exploded. Offers came to market from all major online bank-owned brokerages as well as most other Canadian online brokers in one way or another. Even Wealthsimple Trade managed to jump into the deals and promotions fray, once again taking their cues from Robinhood and launching a promotion to give away cash in an amount equivalent to a particular popular stock.

Deals were just one part of what the fourth quarter of 2020 had to offer. Also on deck for the end of the year was a huge announcement from TD Direct Investing, which launched their new commission-free ETF trading platform, GoalAssist. While the platform only allows commission-free trading for TD-branded ETFs, it is a huge step in moving the needle forward on commission-free trading for Canadian DIY investors. Already ETFs are free to buy (at Questrade and Virtual Brokers) or free to buy and sell (all ETFs at National Bank Direct Brokerage and a limited selection at Scotia iTrade and Qtrade Investor). So, for TD Direct Investing, one of the biggest names in Canadian DIY investing circles, to launch this product (and in a mobile-only format to boot) means that they are directly going after the commission-free trading offering by Wealthsimple Trade.

Ironically, it appears that in the fourth quarter, Wealthsimple Trade was already at work to challenge the traditional Canadian online brokerage offering of a “desktop experience.” Prior to this year, Wealthsimple Trade had been available in mobile-app format only – something that ultimately ended getting Wealthsimple Trade disqualified from being included in some of the Surviscor online brokerage rankings.

As of the fourth quarter, however, Wealthsimple Trade has launched a desktop version of their web platform that is being tested by users. Given that fewer people are actually going into an office or are on the go to and from an office, more and more users are spending time on their laptops or desktop computers. So, this highly sought-after feature is another shot across the bow aimed at the online brokerage industry indicating that Wealthsimple Trade is getting up to speed on the features that online investors want.

New features didn’t stop there for Canadian online brokerages, however. BMO InvestorLine rolled out a 2.0 version of their online trading experience, which significantly streamlines their existing web interface, though it is still being updated in terms of features. At first blush, it looks like the trend among online brokerages has shifted away from completing all features before launch, moving instead to an “agile” model of shipping features out and enhancing/optimizing over the product lifecycle. Another big announcement from an online broker regarding features was from National Bank Direct Brokerage, which officially rolled out OptionsPlay as part of their offering to clients. This platform is intended to assist individual investors in manoeuvring through trading options.

Finally, one more noteworthy milestone took place in the quarter, as the Sparx team launched the fourth edition of the Look Back/Look Ahead series. This publication featured in-depth coverage of several of Canada’s most popular online brokerages, which offered a unique glimpse at how 2020 unfolded for them as well as what features and trends they’re looking to in 2021. In addition to the online brokerage space as a whole, the magazine also offered a sneak peek at the new website coming in 2021.

Even summarizing it a quarter at a time, this year had lots of other stories that we didn’t get a chance to highlight in the Roundups as well as in this ultimate year-end review of stories that shaped 2020 in the Canadian (and US) online brokerage industry.

2020 being what it is, there’s still room for some kind of unplanned surprise that could impact investors – whether it’s a new deal or feature launch – however, the good news is that with just a few more days until the official end of the year, online brokerage employees are going to be in holiday mode, too. As such, we don’t anticipate more feature releases going live just yet.

So, on that note, we’ll be doing something different and signing off for the Weekly Roundup for 2020 for the final stretch of December. We will be rebooting in early January, with a few other surprises to mention right out of the gate, as well as more exclusive content. Unless, of course, 2020 drops a story too big not to cover in the online brokerage space.

Discount Brokerage Tweets of the Week

From the Forums

A Sure Thing?

In this post, one investor asks for recommendations of stable, secure American companies to invest in for the next 10 to 15 years. The advice pours in, covering ETFs, the couch potato strategy, Canadian versus American stocks – and why you should avoid taking advice about specific stocks from random people on the internet.

Live and Learn

An investor who knows very little about their own investments asks about the best way to learn about the topic. Redditors share their favourite books, websites, courses, podcasts, and more, along with their personal financial journeys.

Into the Close

That’s it for the final Roundup for 2020. With vaccines now in place and hope on the horizon, there is lots to look forward to in the coming months. The next few weeks will be the most challenging; however, to pull a (final) line from the Fast and Furious franchise, “We do what we do best, we improvise.”

Stay safe, healthy, and connected, and see you again in 2021.

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Discount Brokerage Weekly Roundup – December 14, 2020

’Tis the season for gifts, and it seems like with recent fervour around IPOs, those gifts are coming in the form of jingling market bells. For both DIY investors and online brokerages, the excitement around recent IPOs and the optimism heading into 2021 bode well for the run-up to RSP season.

In this can’t-believe-the-end-of-2020-is-so-close edition of the Roundup, we review the least likely name to have experienced an outage and what that means for online investors in the brave new world of trading online. Next, we highlight one bank-owned online brokerage that has quietly launched a potentially disruptive feature that will challenge the rest of the Canadian online brokerage industry to find a way to follow suit. As always, we’ll toss in a healthy dose of investor commentary courtesy of the forums and Twitter.  

Trader Interrupted: Interactive Brokers Suffers Trading Outage

If there’s one lesson that DIY investors learned the hard way this year, it’s that online brokerage platforms are not bulletproof. Multiple platform outages across the year, sometimes in the same week or day, sometimes (always) at the worst possible moment, have plagued DIY investors and online brokers alike and eroded the confidence of many active online investors in the ability of their online broker to be functional when opportunity knocks.

Nobody is more keenly aware of this than those who actively trade. Active trading is inherently risky, but the risk of technical failures – which is an ever-present risk – is something online investors have had to contend with a lot more this year, it seems, than in any other year before.

One name that has largely stayed out of the outage spotlight this year has been Interactive Brokers. On several occasions leading up to forecasted volatility in the markets, they hardened their systems and reigned in risk exposure to deal with the impending storm. This past week, however, Interactive Brokers clients were greeted with something frightening, as a system failure during the market open essentially sidelined investors for almost half the day’s trading session.

Contextually, it is important to note that unlike most other online brokerages, Interactive Brokers is highly attractive to professional investors as well as retail investors because of the professional-grade nature of their pricing and market access. On average (per their latest investor presentation), they are home to over 980,000 clients and execute more than 1.8 million trades per day.

For this level of active trader, there is lots of money (and risk) on the line, so of all the types of investors, this lot seldom tolerates technical failures. Naturally, some of this group took to Twitter to express their frustration – and did not hold back. For context, we are well versed in Twitter reactions to online brokerages, especially when there are service interruptions. However, the reaction to the outage from the group of Interactive Broker clients on Twitter was swift, unpleasant, and, because of their client base, global.

Aside from the extraordinary fact that Interactive Brokers’ systems went down during the trading day (technically, before the opening bell), what was also interesting about how things played out was the acknowledgement and ownership of the issue by the CEO of Interactive Brokers, Milan Galik. Of the many service interruptions or outages that have taken place here in the Canadian online brokerage space, there hasn’t really been this level of personal acknowledgement before. Suffice it to say it was a big deal.

The lesson for online investors is that regardless of the calibre of online brokerage, the risk of failure due to technical outage is ever-present. The cause for the failure and service interruption was attributed to a failed data storage system from an external (unnamed) vendor. However, the reality is that architecture for modern trading systems continues to get increasingly complex, so it is likely a matter of when rather than if a system will go down. With more moving parts comes the increase in risk of something going wrong. This is a material consideration for active investors, especially those using margin to trade.

This year has been a bumpy one for Interactive Brokers. After the debacle with oil futures going negative in April, along with this outage, which happened on a relatively benign day in the market (can’t imagine what this would have been like on high-volatility day), there will be cause for concern for some investors. Still, industry and retail perspectives would likely both agree that one would be hard-pressed to find an online brokerage platform as invested in technology and automation as Interactive Brokers.

This past week also saw Interactive Brokers present at the Goldman Sachs US Financial Services Conference, and the key takeaway from that session was that Interactive Brokers remains on a healthy growth trajectory.

Clearly, there will be many clients who will remain unhappy about how things unfolded with regards to the outage, but, on balance, there appears to be significant momentum behind Interactive Brokers to continue their push higher in 2021.

RBC Direct Investing Navigating New Territory

For many individuals, 2021 can’t come fast enough. In addition to wanting to leave this wacky year behind us, the sentiment of having something better to look forward to (aka hope) is much more appealing than dwelling on 2020.

When it comes to Canadian online brokerages, the future is a bit of a touchy subject.

Understandably, for competitive reasons or simply to manage expectations, online brokerages have been coy about what they’re working on. From time to time, however, an online brokerage may mention a key feature that has been requested or even talk about something exciting, but those occasions are usually few and far between.

Against that backdrop, the launch of a new content offering from RBC Direct Investing stands in contrast to the historical way of doing things at Canadian online brokerages. Perhaps as a signal of change within the firm, and quite likely something that will (once again) prompt the Canadian online brokerage industry as a whole (in particular the bank-owned online brokerages) to consider matching the tactic, the latest communications move by RBC Direct Investing might be the snowball that starts an avalanche of information from their competitors.

This past November, as part of their Inspired Investor magazine, RBC Direct Investing launched a feature called “Navigators,” which is described as a “monthly go-to for what’s happening at RBC Direct Investing.”

Contained within this feature are updates about new or interesting features at RBC Direct Investing, as well as tips on how to navigate the RBC Direct Investing platform and the most read article from the preceding month’s Inspired Investor series.

The first issue, for example, telegraphed upcoming improvements to site navigation and improved stock screener experiences. In the most recent (also the second) issue, the new stock screener experience was showcased as well as a milestone of achieving full online account opening for RBC Direct Investing accounts – specifically, this feature is now available to non-RBC banking clients, too. Additional enhancements coming soon to the RBC Direct Investing experience were also mentioned and included improvements to the portfolio analyzer and filtering of order statuses on the mobile app.

Normally when incremental features are released, they get very little coverage from online brokerages – however, it is exactly these small enhancements that users often miss and that fill the gaps between major feature releases. Not only do they help to inform the DIY investor community (some of whom are already RBC Direct Investing clients in this case) as to what is going on, but they also serve to demonstrate that change and innovation are happening.

It is not an understatement to say that signs of innovation within the Canadian online brokerage space are difficult to spot, not because they don’t happen but because they are often underreported.

As we stated in the Look Back / Look Ahead series for 2020/2021, we believe that an emerging trend for how online investors will evaluate online brokerages will sway toward those that are always working on enhancements. We certainly don’t live in a static world, and online investing is no exception. When cars can get over-the-air updates, online brokerages ought to be able to continuously be upgrading the user experience. By letting users know which features are in the works, it may improve the odds of a client opting to stay rather than switch or open a new account simply to access a particular feature.

For those reasons, there is likely to be greater incentive and pressure on peer firms to a) innovate and b) discuss the kinds of features they’re working on improving. Of course, it will be crucial to then follow through on those improvements.

Taking a step back, this is clearly what market differentiation looks like. We saw what happened to the online brokerage space in 2014, when RBC Direct Investing opted to lower their commission price to $9.95 per trade: almost all of the other bank-owned brokerages quickly followed suit. Now that RBC Direct Investing has rolled out a way to keep DIY investors apprised of what’s “cooking in the kitchen,” they have thrown down the gauntlet for their competitors to try to do the same. With two issues now released, it is safe to say there are going to be more readers curious to see what RBC Direct Investing is working on next.

The simple question DIY investors will be asking Canadian online brokerages heading into RSP season is what they can expect to get from each one they’re considering. Fortunately for RBC Direct Investing, they have a lot more to talk about than just their pricing, which is not something most of their peers can say.

Discount Brokerage Tweets of the Week

From the Forums

A Match Made in…the Office

In this post, a Redditor asks if they should take part in their employer’s matching program for retirements savings. The problem? A very high Management Expense Ratio (MER). Redditors weigh in on whether receiving this “free” money is still a good idea with the high MER.


After landing a dream job at a pre-IPO start-up, a new investor with an incredible salary and low monthly expenses asks for help planning for the future in this post. Hundreds of responses pour in, with tips on everything from avoiding “lifestyle creep” to saving for an emergency fund to making the best use of TFSAs and RRSPs.

Into the Close

In “normal” times, this point in the calendar is when things would slow down, and other than the rush to pick up last-minute presents, there would be room for a little bit of a gear-down. Alas, this is a 2020 December. With hot IPOs hitting the market, and literally nowhere else to go for many of us, it will be a mad dash to the finish. Several stories hit our radar this week that were not covered here, so we’ll try to squeeze them in before the year ends. And, if you haven’t already done so, be sure to check out Look Back / Look Ahead for awesome insights and previews of what’s coming around the corner in 2021.

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Discount Brokerage Weekly Roundup – December 7, 2020

Take a deep breath. Believe it or not, December is here, and with it, news of several COVID-19 vaccines, stock markets making record highs, and hope on the horizon. Certainly not a coincidence. Another non-coincidence at this time of year is the appearance of special treats and the idea of wrapping things up with a bow.

In this special edition of the Roundup, we turn once again to the topic of deals and promotions, with a regularly scheduled check-in of the deals landscape to kick off the new month. From there, the big announcement: Sparx Trading’s exclusive Look Back Look Ahead series for 2020-2021 is now live! We’ve got a great overview of this unique series that features Canadian online brokers giving their perspective on the past year as well as on what’s coming in 2021. And, as always, we’ve got a full helping of DIY investor comments from Twitter and the DIY investor forums.

De(al)cember Update

The countdown to the end of the year has been going on for some time, but now that December’s here, the finish line to 2020 is in sight.

Despite the gloomy weather and even gloomier forecasts for COVID-19, the online brokerage deals and promotions section offers some brighter news. As is customary at the start of each month, we take stock (pun intended) of the deals and promotions landscape among Canadian online brokerages. The good news: this year is as strong as ever in terms of promotional activity among Canadian brokerages.

Although no new deals launched at the beginning of December, a very competitive offer from National Bank Direct Brokerage did get extended for another month. The 100 commission-free trade offer by NBDB is one of the most competitive offers for DIY investors interested in commission-free trades, and with zero deposit requirements, it also has the lowest hurdle.

Last month was a watershed moment for deals and promotions activity among Canada’s online brokerages. After being mostly dormant since the end of RSP season last year, almost all online brokerages decided to launch a cash-back or commission-free trade offer.

Interestingly, there are still a few brokerages currently not on the deals and promotions list, something we anticipate changing either this month or early next month. Firms we expect to see stepping into the promotional space soon are Qtrade Investor, HSBC InvestDirect, and Virtual Brokers, given the fact that other brokerages are already offering something.

Finally, another deal we’re watching this month is Wealthsimple Trade’s “free stock” offer, which is set to expire on December 18th. It is an unusual time for a promotion to end, but it is encouraging to note that the deal is happening at all, since offering zero-commission trading is a significant draw on its own.

With all of these offers currently in play, this is likely an ideal window for online investors interested in an investing account to maximize the selection of promotions.

So, while the weather outside is frightful, this might be the most wonderful time of the year for getting a little extra boost for opening an online brokerage account.

Sparx Trading’s Online Brokerage Look Back Look Ahead Is Live!

More countdown-related content continues to emerge this month, this time from yours truly at Sparx Trading.

Our highly anticipated fourth edition of the Look Back Look Ahead series is here, and – to borrow from Robinhood’s Market Snacks podcast (fair game to borrow from Robinhood, amirite?) – this is the best one yet.

This edition features in-depth submissions from six Canadian online brokerages that offer a fascinating set of perspectives on how 2020 unfolded and preview what they have in store for 2021. In addition, we’ve given our own perspectives on the online brokerages that did not provide a submission and outlined what we thought were noteworthy developments during the year. Finally, we’ve provided a detailed preview of what the next version of has in store for DIY investors.

Online brokerages featured in this issue include:

The series is now in its fourth iteration, and it’s interesting to see how things have evolved since we first launched it in 2014. One of the readily apparent changes is that in addition to a blog format, we also have a magazine edition, which we rolled out starting in 2018. Even though it takes considerable work to pull together a magazine format, we thought it was an opportunity to create something great-looking and engaging, which offered a different way to present stories about an exceptionally fascinating year.

One thing that has remained consistent about contributions to the Look Back Look Ahead series has been the unique perspective that only the voices of the online brokerages’ senior leaders can provide. It remains a rare opportunity to hear from senior stakeholders on how the year unfolded as well as their vision for the year ahead.

Another great feature of this year’s issue is that the Q&A format provides an interesting perspective on several points relevant to DIY investors, including:

  • What beginning investors can expect
  • What active investors can expect
  • Which online investing trends they think will matter to DIY investors
  • What user experience means to their firm
  • What sets their firm apart from their peers

As referenced in the beginning of the blog version of this series, there were a number of themes that emerged from the responses and analysis of the online brokerage landscape from 2020. Three big themes that stood out were the need for agility, the importance of communication, and the rising prominence of user experience.

Based on a macro view of what has transpired this year, the consensus is that COVID-19 helped accelerate the future into the present. For the world of online investing, it seems that DIY investors will be looking beyond just the headline price of commissions to the full experience of what it means to be “self-directed.” Case in point: Despite DIY investors having to pay commissions for trades, the industry as a whole saw record-breaking account openings and trading volumes during the height of the market volatility, from March through the summer.

What has become clear, now even more than in previous years, is the need for transparent and ongoing communication in order to create strong relationships with clients. With the heightened uncertainty, communication channels at online brokerages have been tested, and going forward, the hallmark of an online brokerage who “gets it” will be one that excels at communicating with clients proactively. Further, DIY investors will be looking for brokerages to harden the systems that matter in a crisis or in times of extreme volatility. Patience for service interruptions or delays has worn thin, and demonstrating “uptime” is also going to become a marker of quality.

On a lighter note, observant viewers will notice that our cover art tried to capture the work-from-home look, something that embodies the spirit of 2020 for many of us. There are some special details we tucked into the image that we’re sure DIY investors can appreciate. Sticking to the aesthetic for a moment, the soon-to-be-launched new website and content will feature our bull and bear prominently. Unless it’s sensationalistic, a lot of financial content is difficult to engage with, so we hope to continue to provide a more engaging way in which to consume DIY-investor-focused content.

Personally, I found this issue to be an enriching read, and I am excited by the prospect of DIY investors discovering something new and interesting about the Canadian online brokerage landscape as we move through the end of 2020 (thankfully) and into a new chapter in 2021.

To read the Look Back Look Ahead series, click here.

Discount Brokerage Tweets of the Week

From the Forums

And Baby Makes Three

A Redditor in Ontario with a baby arriving soon asks in this post how to establish an RESP and get the full benefit of it – and also wonders if they need to be actively involved after the initial setup.

Exasperated by Exorbitant Expenses

In this post, one frustrated investor wants to know why Canadian brokerages have such high fees compared to their American counterparts. Redditors weigh in with their best theories.

Into the Close

That’s a wrap on this early-December edition of the Roundup. Markets continue to price in optimism around the corner, which should continue to lift spirits for now. There have been some significant comeback stories this past week – including Blackberry – and even more excitement as IPOs like Airbnb and DoorDash prepare their public debuts. One thing’s for sure, there’s lots to keep DIY investors glued to their screens in what was supposed to be a quieter time of year.

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Look Back / Look Ahead: A Review of Canadian Online Brokerages in 2020 & Preview of 2021

After making it through 2020, there are few things that would count as truly surprising anymore. Between COVID-19, the wild US presidential election and everything else that has unfolded this past year, 2021 can’t come fast enough for many of us.

For Canadian DIY investors and Canada’s online brokerages, despite a wild year of volatility, volume and very rapid change the macro picture appeared to be a positive one. Record account opening, revenues from trading and after a sharp selloff, a strong rebound in stock markets have favourably positioned Canadian online brokerages heading into the new year.

In the latest edition of Sparx Trading’s exclusive Look Back / Look Ahead series, Canada’s online brokerages provide a unique snapshot of the past year at their respective firms, as well as provide an enticing view to 2021 – yet one more reason the new year can’t come quickly enough.

This edition is one of the most fascinating yet. If for no other reason, hearing about what 2020 was like at Canada’s online brokerages during such historic times is worth tuning into. There is, however, so much more worth finding out about.

Also included in this issue is a fascinating preview of what Canada’s online brokerages have in store for DIY investors in 2021. Further, our unique Q&A feature zeros in on what beginner and active investors can expect from each online broker as well as what sets each online brokerage apart from their peers.

There is lots more content that DIY investors can dig into, so be sure to check out the featured brokerages that provided detailed submissions of the year that was and what’s coming up.

In the meantime, we’ve put together three key themes that emerged from this year’s series that provide some food for thought when assessing the Canadian online brokerage space.

Theme 1: Agility

COVID-19 forced massive change on everyone, online brokerages included. Withstanding a pandemic-level impact was only one of the major challenges Canada’s online brokerages had to move quickly to address, however.

Compounding the challenge was the sheer volume of interest from DIY investors to open up and fund their online investing accounts. Ultimately it came down to agility, technical capability and operational resilience.

Online brokerages who already had invested in online account sign ups were able to more readily handle the challenges that accompanied the immense interest in opening accounts than those who had to route investors through paper-driven sign up processes.

The key takeaway for DIY investors is that COVID-19 showed which online brokerages were more ‘change ready’ and which features matter during times of heightened market volatility.

Theme 2: Communication

With so much of our lives now digitized, instant access to what’s going on is now the norm. A great example is Uber Eats – where you can find out in real time where your food order is.

In that world, DIY investors will be hungry for more information from their online brokerages. It might be price, it might be service experience, it might be platforms or even promotions. One thing that stands out about online brokerages in 2020 is that those who prioritized connecting and communicating with investors are now better positioned to have their story and message heard.

With so many online brokerages available to service DIY investors in Canada, those that are able to create special content or deliver engaging investor education experiences or simply have a solid, regular communications strategy in place can ensure DIY investors have something worth tuning into.

Theme 3: User Experience

This was one of the more fascinating trends to dive into in this issue of the Look Back Look Ahead feature.

For DIY investors, it was reassuring to see online brokerages define user experience in terms of customer experience. That said, one of the challenges created by 2020 is that there are lots of novice investors who have entered the markets on a whim and for whom the markets only appear to be making new highs.

Providing this new crop of investors with the right tools and resources to navigate the journey of online investing will be important. Further, the balancing act continues between older clients who may not be as tech savvy or inclined towards mobile features, and younger investors who are demanding different aesthetics to websites and apps. Interestingly, there will be several notable upgrades in platforms and online investing experiences coming throughout 2021 so we’ll be curious how different online brokerages tackle the challenges in the new year.

Click the links below to learn about what each Canadian online brokerage had to say about 2020 and what to look forward to in 2021.

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Discount Brokerage Deals & Promotions – December 2020

*Update: December 18* After what has simultaneously felt like the fastest yet slowest year ever, we have finally made it to December! In true holiday fashion, Sparx Trading is here to spread old-fashioned cheer and merry updates as we take a (cautious and socially distanced) step into the final month of 2020. 

Bargain-hunting DIY investors can rejoice. Just because Black Friday and Cyber Monday have concluded, this doesn’t mean there aren’t still great deals to be had. The past month saw an influx of new deals and promotions from Canadian discount brokerages, which are slated to run until the end of 2020 or into early 2021.

Last month, our radar picked up on numerous commission-free trade and cash-back offers from various bank-owned brokerages, including BMO InvestorLine, TD Direct Investing, CIBC Investor’s Edge, Scotia iTRADE, and RBC Direct Investing. Wealthsimple Trade also joined in on the deals action, with a free stock promotion that expires on December 18th. 

Scroll on to learn more about all the current online brokerage deals and promotions for December. We’re keeping a close eye on the deals space, so don’t forget to check back throughout the month for more jolly updates. And if you find an offer that would be great for other DIY investors to know about, please let us know in the comments.

Expired Deals

*Update: Dec. 18 – Wealthsimple Trade’s trade free stock promotion ends on today, December 18th, 2020. Be sure to open an eligible account by 11:59:59 PM EST today to qualify. Full details can be found in the table below.*

Extended Deals

National Bank Direct Brokerage’s 100 free online trades promotion has been extended! The new deadline for this huge free trade offer expires December 31st, 2020. 

New Deals

*Update: Dec. 18 – Qtrade Investor has just launched a promotion for new clients who open an account by March 1st, 2021. Clients who open a new account are being offered two rewards to choose from: a cash reward or preferred pricing trades. See the table below for more details on the promotional rewards, as well as full terms and conditions.*

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
  6. Offers for Young Investors

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
Scotia iTrade Scotia iTRADE is offering two choices for new investors who open accounts before March 1, 2021 and fund it with at least A) $5,000; B) $10,000; C) $25,000; D) $50,000; E) $100,000; F) $250,000; G) $500,000 or H) $1M+: Option 1: you can use promo code C21 to receive cash reward of A) $25; B) $50; C) $100; D) $200; E) $400; F) $750; G) $1,000 or H) $1,500; plus a discounted commission of $6.99 per trade until June 30, 2021. Option 2: Use promo code FT21 and you may be eligible for A) 10; B) 20; C) 50; D) 100; E) 200; F) 300; G) 400 or H) 500 free trades to use for 90 days after the account is funded. $5,000 Cash Back or Free Trades 90 days Scotia iTRADE’s Cash Back or Free Trade Offer March 1, 2021
Fund your new or existing CIBC Investor’s Edge account before Mar 2, 2021 with at least A) $10,000; B) 25,000; C) $50,000; D) $100,000; E) $500,000 or F) $1M+ and you may be eligible to receive a cash back reward of up to A) $50; B) $100; C) $200; D) $500; E) $1,000 or F) $2,000. To qualify, the fund must be from outside CIBC. No promo code required. $10,000 Cash Back Program Page March 2, 2021
Open a new TD Direct Investing account by Mar 1, 2021 with promo code INVESTNOW and fund it with new assets worth at least A) $15,000; B) $25,000; C) $100,000; D) $250,000 or E) $500,000, and you may be eligible to receive a cash back reward of up to A) $100; B) $200; C) $300; D) $500 or E) $1,000. The fund must be deposited to the account by April 30, 2021 and at least one trade is placed by June 30, 2021. In addition, you may also be eligible for another $100 cash reward by setting up a Monthly Contribution Plan (min. $100 per month) with the first contribution occur before April 30, 2021. The maximum reward one could receive is $1,100. $15,000 Cash Back TD Direct Investing Cash Back Promotion March 1, 2021
BMO InvestorLine Open a new qualifying account at BMO InvestorLine with new assets worth at least A) $50,000; B) $100,000; C) $250,000; D) $500,000 or E) $1M+, and you may be eligible to receive a cash back reward of up to A) $100; B) $250; C) $450; D) $950 or E) $2,000. Use promo code SDCASH2000 when registering to qualify. Be sure to read full terms and conditions. $50,000 Cash Back Fall 2020 Cashback Campaign Jan 5, 2021
New clients who open new Qtrade Investor accounts before Mar 01, 2021 have 2 options: (1) Fund your new Qtrade Investor account with at least A) $25,000; B) 50,000; C) $100,000; D) $500,000; E) $1M or F) $2M+ and you may be eligible to receive a pre-paid Visa gift card of up to A) $50; B) $100; C) $250; D) $800; E) $1,500 or F) $2,000. Only first 500 customers are eligible. Please use promo code VISA2K. (2) The first 100 clients who use promo code TRADE695 may be eligible for 100 trades at a preferred commission rate of $6.95 for 6 months. Minimum deposit $10,000 is required. $10,000 Cash Reward or Preferred Pricing 6 months Up to $2,000 Visa Gift Card Offer 100 Discounted Commission Trades March 1, 2021
New accounts opened between Jun 22 and Dec 31, 2020 will be awarded 100 free online trades in one year. This promotion applies to new and existing NBDB clients who use the code “FREE2020” to open new accounts. There’s no minimum funding requirement, however some other restrictions may apply. $0 100 Free Trades 1 year Please refer to the full details of the deal. December 31, 2020
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, 2020
Open a new RBC Direct Investing account by December 31, 2020 and fund it with at least $5,000 by March 5, 2021 and you will receive commission rebates for 25 trades that occur within 1 year of account opening. Be sure to use promo code NTBW2 during account opening. You will be charged regular commissions on the trading date, and the rebate will be deposited back into your account after 3-5 business days. If you are an existing customer to RBC DI, the type of the new account being opened must be different from the account types that you current have. $5,000 25 commission-free trades for a year 1 year 25 commission-free trades December 31, 2020
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, 2020

Expired Offers

Last Updated: Dec. 22, 2020 13:56PT

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
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
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
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 5, 2021

Expired Offers

Last Updated: Nov 30, 2020 14:30PT

Transfer Fee Promotions

Company Brief Description Maximum Transfer Fee Coverage Amount Minimum Deposit Amount for Transfer Fee Eligibility Details Link Deadline
Move your brokerage account to Questrade and they’ll cover the transfer-out fee up to $150. $150 n/a Transfer Fee Promo none
Transfer $15,000 or more to RBC Direct Investing and they will pay up to $200 in transfer fees. $200 $15,000 Transfer Fee Rebate Details none
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 $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
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 Transfer Fee Promo 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
BMO InvestorLine Open a new qualifying account with BMO InvestorLine or fund a qualifying existing account and you may be eligible to have transfer fees covered up to $200. Contact client service for more details. $200 Contact client service for more information Contact client service for more information (1-888-776-6886) none

Expired Offers

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 $10,000 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 $10,000 Disnat 1% Commission Credit Promo January 8, 2020
Last Updated: Nov. 30, 2020 14:13PT

Other Promotions

Company Brief Description Minimum Deposit Amount Required Details Link Deadline
The minimum commission per equity trade ($1.99) is waived for new accounts from account opening till December 31, 2020. As a result, your commission is just 1¢/share (max $7.99). However, this offer does not apply to Odd Lot orders (i.e. orders with quantity less than 100 shares if price >= $1 or price < $0.10; or less than 500 shares if price in the $0.10 – $0.99 range). Please be reminded that at Virtual Brokers ETFs are always free to buy. $0 No Minimum 2020 – Terms & Conditions December 31, 2020
Submit your information via the Hardbacon website to be referred to National Bank Direct Brokerage. Open and fund a qualifying account and you may receive up to 200 commission-free trades and discounted trading commissions. Be sure to read full terms and conditions. n/a Hardbacon Free Trade Promo none
Open a new Non-Registered trading account and fund it with at least $100 by December 18, 2020 and you may receive a random cash bonus ranging from $1 to $4,500. The cash bonus amount will be equivalent to the value of one of the fifteen stocks that have been selected by Wealthsimple Trade for this program. Please refer to the Terms and Conditions for more details. $100 Wealthsimple Trade Free Stock Promotion December 18, 2020
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

Expired Offers

Last Updated: Nov 30, 2020 14:16PT

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 a new SmartFolio account and fund it with at least $1,000 and you could receive 0.5% cash back up to $1,000. Use promo code SFNOV1000 when opening a new account. See terms and conditions for full details. This offer is limited to new SmartFolio clients only, and can be combined with the refer-a-friend promotion. $1,000 0.5% cash back to a maximum of $1,000. SFNOV1000 January 5, 2021 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
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: Nov. 30, 2020 14:30PT

Offers for Young Investors

Brokerage Offer Type Eligible Age Range / Client Segment Offer Description Min. Deposit Expiry Date Link
Student Pricing Clients with CIBC Smart™ Account for students $5.95 per trade and zero annual account fees not required None CIBC Student Pricing
Broker@ge 18-30 18-30 years old investors Benefits: * 5 free transactions (Minimum deposit of $1,000 required) * No inactivity fees * No asset minimum to maintain for free registered accounts * Exclusive events * Disnat Mobile App $1,000 None Broker@ge 18-30
Offers for professionals & Students Students in selected fields of study Professionals and students in the below fields can benefit from a reduced pricing structure: * Engineering students * Legal, accounting and business students * Healthcare students * Health sciences students * Nursing students Benefits: * $5.95 commission on equities * $0 commission on ETFs * $0 annual administration fee not required None NBDB Student Pricing
Young Investors Offer 18-30 years old investors Accounts holders who are 30 years old or younger are offered 10 free trades each year. After the free transactions, a commission rate of $4.95 per transaction will be applied (which is just half of the regular price). not required None Young Investor Offer
Young investor pricing 18-30 years old investors Benefits: * $7.75 commissions for stock and ETF trades * No account minimums * No quarterly admin fees min. $50 a month through pre-authorized contributions. None Young Investor Pricing
Waiver of account maintenance fee Clients who have RBC Student account, currently or in the past 5 years. The Maintenance Fee ($25 per quarter) is waived, regardless of the account balance. not required None Zero Account Management Fee
Young Investors Offer Clients below 26 years old Low activity account administration fee and the RSP account administration fee are waived. not required None Young Investors Offer
Zero Account Administration Fee Clients below 26 years old The account administration fee ($24.95 per quarter) is waived. not required None $0 Account Administration Fee
Last Updated: Nov. 30, 2020 14:25PT