Credential Direct Review
Updated on: Feb 3, 2016
Credential Direct is an independent online brokerage headquartered in Vancouver BC. Although they may not be as recognizable name in the online discount brokerage world as many of their peers, they’ve been around since 2000 and are part of Credential Financial Inc. Credential Direct primarily partners with credit unions to provide their clients with access to online trading accounts.
Like its peers, Credential Direct offers clients the ability to trade stocks, ETFs bonds, mutual funds and options in both registered accounts and non-registered accounts.
|Standard Equity Commission||$8.88|
|Best Commission Price||$8.88|
|Minimum to Open Account||Not Required|
|Commission Free ETFs||No|
|Account Types Offered||Funding Requirements and Fees||Registered Account Types and Fees|
|TFSA||Minimum Opening Balance||Not Required||TFSA||Annual Charge||$100 (See Conditions for Inactivity Fees)|
|RRSP||Minimum Account Balance||Not Required||Transfer Out||$125 (full)
|RESP||Minimum Balance for Best or Discounted Commission||Not Required||Withdrawals||$0|
|Cash||Minimum Commission per Equity Trade||$8.88||US Dollar Account|
|Margin Short||Maximum Commission per Equity Trade*||$8.88||RRSP||Annual Charge||$100 (See Conditions for Inactivity Fees)|
|Margin Options||Minimum Trades per Quarter for Best Commission Rate||Not Required||Transfer Out||$125 (full)
|CIPF Member||Inactivity or Maintenance Fees||$25/quarter||US Dollar Account|
|Conditions for Inactivity/Maintenance Fees||If client has <$15,000 across all accounts AND makes <2 trades/qtr AND is not part of preauthorized contribution plan of at least $100/mo||RESP||Annual Charge||$100 (See Conditions for Inactivity Fees)|
|Transfer Out||$125 (full)
|US Dollar Account|
|Last updated: Mar. 8, 2016|
Pricing & Fees
(Updated: July 9, 2014)
Credential Direct has now changed it’s commission price structure. Effective July 9, 2014, the commission pricing at Credential Direct has been lowered and simplified so that all clients are eligible for the $8.88 standard commission rate. As such, they are also removing their “active trader” program. The new pricing structure is much easier to follow than its predecessor. It should be noted that fees such as SEC fees, ECN fees or any additional stock exchange fee is extra and will be added onto the total commission for a given trade.
Options commission pricing has also been reduced . For active traders, options commission pricing is $8.88 + $1.25 per contract. Note that assignments and exercises of options are priced according to the regular telephone order commission rate.
As part of the new pricing structure, Credential Direct is introducing an “administration fee” of $25 per quarter. Like some of their competitors, Credential Direct does offer several ways in which clients can avoid having to pay these fees including:
- Having a combined (across all accounts) balance of at least $15,000
- Making at least 2 commission generating within a quarter
- Have an active pre-authorized contribution plan of at least $100 per month
Clients who have had their account for 6 months or less are also exempt from the administration fee.
Credential Direct offers clients both non-registered and registered online trading accounts.
Non-registered trading accounts with Credential Direct include both cash and margin accounts. For their margin accounts, a minimum balance of $2,000 must be maintained.
Their registered accounts include tax-free savings accounts (TFSAs), registered retirement savings plans (RRSPs) and registered education savings plans (RESPs). For registered accounts clients cannot use margin or short stocks.
While clients can trade US stocks, Credential Direct will charge mandatory foreign exchange fees in both registered and non-registered accounts, so it is important to consider the amount of trading of US-listed securities as this activity can add to the cost per trade.
Reviews & Ratings
|Review||What Review Measures||Score||Date of Ranking|
|Dalbar Canada Review||Client Service||Not Rated
|Globe and Mail Review||Overall Impression||Letter Grade “C”
11th out of 12
Letter Grade “C”
8th out of 12
Letter Grade “C”
9th out of 12
Letter Grade “C”
|JD Power Review||Investor Satisfaction||Not Rated