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Qtrade Investor Review
Updated on: Mar. 9, 2016
Qtrade Investor – a division of Qtrade Financial Group – is an independent (non-bank owned) online brokerage headquartered out of Vancouver, British Columbia. Despite their smaller size, Qtrade has formed partnerships with many financial institutions, credit unions in particular, in order to provide online brokerage services to their partners’ clients. Early in 2013, Desjardins (parent to Desjardins Online Brokerage/Disnat) acquired a significant ownership portion in Qtrade.
As with their discount brokerage peers, Qtrade Investor allows clients to trade stocks, ETFs, mutual funds and options. Qtrade is part of a small group of online brokerages that offers commission-free ETF trading on select ETFs. Click here for a detailed review of their commission-free ETFs.
|Standard Equity Commission||$8.75|
|Best Commission Price||$6.95|
|Minimum to Open Account||$1,000|
|Commission Free ETF||Yes|
|Account Types Offered||Funding Requirements and Fees||Registered Account Types and Fees|
|TFSA||Minimum Opening Balance||$1,000||TFSA||Annual Charge||$0|
|RRSP||Minimum Account Balance||$1,000||Transfer Out||$150|
|RESP||Minimum Balance for Best or Discounted Commission||$500,000||Withdrawals||$0|
|Cash||Minimum Commission per Equity Trade||$6.95||US Dollar Account||$60/Year|
|Margin Short||Standard Commission per Equity Trade||$8.75||RRSP||Annual Charge||$100 (if assets<$25,000)|
|Margin Options||Minimum Trades per Quarter for Best Commission Rate||150||Transfer Out||$150|
|CIPF Member||Inactivity or Maintenance Fees||$25/quarter||US Dollar Account||$60/Year|
|Conditions for Inactivity/Maintenance Fees||No fees if 2 trades per quarter or at least $25,000 in assets||RESP||Annual Charge||$100 (if assets<$25,000)|
|US Dollar Account|
|Last updated: Mar. 9, 2016|
Pricing & Fees
For the “investor” pricing tier, equity commissions are $8.75 per trade and options trades are $8.75 + $1.25 per contract. The next commission pricing tier, “investor plus” offers clients equity commission fees of $6.95 per trade, however to be eligible for this pricing clients must either trade 150 (or more) times per quarter or have at least $500,000 in assets with Qtrade.
While they have reduced commission fees, Qtrade Investor has introduced administration fees of $25 per quarter for clients with combined Qtrade account balances under $25,000. Fortunately, the fee may be waived by placing at least 2 commission generating trades per quarter.
The fees for US dollar accounts has increased from $50 per year to $60 per year ($15/quarter) and the fee structure for registered accounts has also changed: the minimum threshold to avoid administration fee is now $25,000 (combined across all accounts) and the amount of the administration fee is now $100 per year.
Qtrade offers self-directed investors two main categories of online trading accounts – “Investment Accounts” and “Self-Directed Registered Plans”.
The “Investment Accounts” consist of cash accounts and margin accounts, both which can be in either Canadian or US dollars.
The “Self-Directed Registered Plans” include tax-free savings accounts (TFSAs), registered retirement savings plans (RRSPs) and registered education savings plans (RESPs).
In both categories of account, individuals are able to trade stocks, bonds, mutual funds and options. Like other Canadian online brokerages, there are some restrictions. Short selling and complex options trading are only allowed in margin accounts and there are limitations on options trading in registered accounts.
Reviews & Ratings
|Review||What Review Measures||Score||Date of Ranking|
|Dalbar Canada Review||Client Service||Below Average
|Globe and Mail Review||Overall Impression||Letter Grade “A”
1st out of 12
Letter Grade “A-”
2nd out of 12
Letter Grade “A”
1st out of 12
Letter Grade “B+”
|JD Power Review||Investor Satisfaction||10th of 10
8th out of 10
5th out of 11