Canadian Online Brokerage Review – Questrade

Canadian Discount Broker - Questrade

Mailing Address
5650 Yonge Street
Suite 1700
Toronto, ON
M2M 4G3

Email Address:
Phone: 1-888-783-7866
Customer Service Hours: Mon to Fri 8 am to 8 pm ET

Questrade Review

Updated on: Feb. 8, 2019
Established in 1999, Questrade is one of several independent Canadian online brokerages. Like their peers, Questrade offers online trading for stocks, ETFs, mutual funds, options, and bonds. Additionally, Questrade also has online trading for currencies, CFD’s and gold bullion. They also support dividend reinvestment plans (DRIPs).

Since inception, Questrade has been actively working to position itself as a top choice amongst price conscious investors and traders. Being both newer and independent means that Questrade has been able to grow its brand via innovation. Historically, they have either been first in launching products (such as US Dollar RSPs) or quick to respond to trends for self-directed investors. To that end, Questrade has recently put a lot of focus on their platform (Questrade IQ) development and improvements to their account user interface.

Quick Info

Standard Equity Commission Min: $4.95
Max: $9.95
Best Commission Price $0.01/sh
Minimum to Open Account $1,000
Maintenance/Inactivity Fees $24.95/quarter
Commission Free ETFs Buy only
Young Investor Offer No

» Get Full Pricing Details

Pricing & Fees

At Questrade, standard trading commissions are calculated at $0.01 per share with a minimum commission cost per equity trade of $4.95 and a maximum commission cost of $9.95. Additional fees such as stock exchange or ECN fees and SEC fees are charged on top of the commission fees depending on the order type. As with a few other Canadian online brokerages, Questrade also offers discounted ETF trading. Specifically, they offer commission-free ETF buying and charge a commission on the sale of an ETF [learn more about commission-free ETFs here].

In terms of trading platforms, Questrade offers free platforms for desktop, web and mobile that are available to all clients. Questrade’s online trading platforms are completely proprietary and are built and maintained in-house. Questrade’s new mobile app, Questrade Mobile, supports functions for both managed portfolios and self-directed accounts.

Questrade’s Advantage plan is geared towards very active traders which they released in 2013. Designed to provide lower pricing for frequent traders, the pricing plan offers two choices: the first being a “per share” version at $0.01 per share with a minimum commission cost of $0.01 and maximum of $6.95 (+ Exchange or ECN fees); the second plan is a “flat pricing” version with trades costing $4.95. As part of their Advantage plan, a paid market data subscription is required.

Standard options pricing is $9.95 (base) + $1 per contract and under the Advantage plan, options trades are priced at $6.95 (base) + $0.75 per contract. Options assignments and exercises are $24.95 flat.
Questrade has broken away from their ‘no inactivity fee’ structure since 2012. At that time, they introduced inactivity fees of $19.95 per quarter. In 2015 they increased the fee to $24.95 per quarter. This fee applies to clients with less than $5,000 in combined assets across accounts and who trade less than once per quarter. There are several exemptions to this fee including clients who are under 25 or those clients who are signed up to a data package subscription. Interestingly, if clients are charged an inactivity fee, this fee may be used as commission ‘credit’ (to a maximum of $24.95) towards trades made in the quarter following the one in which the fee was assessed.

For the majority of investors, the standard Questrade “democratic pricing” is the best deal rather than the Questrade Advantage. Pricing is fair, transparent, and capped for regular stock trades.

Account Types

Like most other Canadian online brokerages, Questrade offers both non-registered and registered account types. Non-registered accounts are margin accounts and clients can trade options as well as short stocks with this account type.

The registered accounts offered by Questrade include tax-free savings accounts (TFSAs), registered retirement savings plans (RRSPs) and registered education savings plans (RESPs). For registered accounts there is no margin or shorting of stocks. Trading options in registered accounts is limited to buying and selling of options as well as writing covered calls. Questrade’s most popular account types are TFSA, RRSP, Margin and Forex & CFDs accounts.


As of 2015 Questrade overhauled their platform, replacing IQ Essential with IQ Edge (desktop based) still keeping their IQ Web (browser based). Providing two primary trading platforms. Questrade describes IQ edge as their advanced trading app. As well as the addition of IQ Edge, Questrade has added a mobile app for trading on the go with built in features, such as symbol lookup and charting, and Questrade FX Global, a global forex trading platform, allowing trading from anywhere in real time, in currencies and commodities. Features of the FX Global include 24-hour trading with their award-winning web-based FX and CFD platform, with an economic releases built-in feature that allows users to monitor market-moving events.

Reviews & Ratings

 Review What Review Measures Score Date of Ranking
Dalbar Canada Review Client Service Below Average
Below Average
January 2015
January 2014
Globe and Mail Review Overall Impression Letter Grade “A-”
Letter Grade “B+”
Letter Grade “B+”
3rd out of 12
Letter Grade “A-”
2nd out of 12
Letter Grade “B+”
4th out of 12
Letter Grade “B”
February 2019
February 2018
December 2016
December 2016
December 2015
December 2015
November 2014
November 2014
November 2013
JD Power Review Investor Satisfaction 3rd out of 8
4th out of 8
10th out of 10
8th out of 10
5th out of 10
Not Rated
9th out of 11
June 2019
September 2018
September 2017
September 2016
September 2015
September 2014
September 2013
MoneySense Top Pick – Customer Service
Top Pick – Initial Impressions
Top Pick – Best Overall
Top Pick – User Experience
Top Pick – Getting Started
Top Pick – User Experience
Top Pick – Fees & Commissions
Top Pick – ETFs
Runner Up – Best Overall
June 2019
June 2019
June 2019
July 2018
July 2017
July 2017
July 2017
July 2017
July 2017


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Home Community Canadian Online Brokerage Review – Questrade

This topic contains 27 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  Amanda Burns 3 months, 1 week ago.

Viewing 10 posts - 11 through 20 (of 26 total)
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  • #17314 Reply


    This is the worse broker an active trader can work with; its inventory of stocks is pathetic and even highly liquid stocks such as Facebook are not available for shorting. I closed my account last year and moved to another broker and am extremely happy with my decision.

    #17009 Reply


    I’ve been on Questrade for since January and love it! Yes fees do take a large bite out of your profits but as with anything there is a learning curve. Be wary of large volume transactions as well as option fees (at a minimum double stock transaction fees)

    #16485 Reply


    Hi Max,

    Thanks for your questions. There’s a lot of ground covered by your questions so I’ll try to answer them each.

    All Canadian brokerages have a trading interface (i.e. platform) that you can use to trade. While all brokerages have a web-based interface, there are some that also have a desktop interface that usually has much more robust functionality. So, it really depends on what kind of needs and preferences you have for entering in an order. If you need or prefer to trade more often (i.e. you are an active trader) then a desktop platform would be preferable because you can enter/place orders faster. Otherwise a web-based platform should suffice.

    The next part of your question about reliability has to do more with the data feed and network that connect to the platform. Most platforms themselves are ok, but there are all kinds of examples of brokerages having network outages during the trading day. The issue is not limited to big or small brokerages – almost all brokerages have these issues from time to time. Of course, if you are not an active trader, there’s less chance that you’ll be impacted by outages and connectivity issues.

    If you check out our comparison tables (here) you can see which brokerages have a minimum deposit requirement of under $2000 (most don’t have a minimum deposit amount). Keep in mind that at such a low deposit level you should also consider what other fees (such as a quarterly fee) you may end up paying.

    If you are an inactive or less active investor, then the platform you use is not going to be a worthwhile feature to spend on. If you do care about platforms though, be sure to also factor in the data feed cost. More likely than not, given your deposit level, you’ll want to focus on a provider that will keep your transaction costs AND administration costs low. There are a couple of factors that could lower the cost to you – for example, if you are “young” investor (i.e. <25 years old) or if you are prepared to commit to regular monthly contributions to your account or trade a few times per quarter.

    Since your comment came from the Questrade page, they are a worthy consideration for the above mentioned reasons however alternatives might be Virtual Brokers or TD Direct Investing as they also have platforms you might be interested in.

    #16419 Reply


    Is there any good and reliable trading platform ? anything with a min deposit =or below 2000$ ? For Canadian ?

    #16264 Reply


    Completely agree with jxg67. I didn’t do my due diligence before signing up with Questrade. The ECN fees are HUGE with my penny trades (commissions can be on average $90 for large volume trades in penny stocks). I am livid (at myself) for not doing my research. I’m in the process of transferring out my cash into another broker that does not have ECN fees. OUCH!

    #13547 Reply


    Don’t put your TFSA account in Questrade.

    Their system have problem. I got three notices from CRA for non-qualified investment in my account and asked me to pay 50% penalty, but it’s all due to Questrade’s error.
    It’s totally waste time to deal with them.

    #12733 Reply

    Carl from Team Questrade

    Hi Jacques,

    I’d like to find out what happened here. Here at Questrade, we strive for the very best in client service and if we didn’t live up to your expectations in this case, I’d like to do what I can to make it right. Please send an email to with your account number and direct it to the attention of “ Carlton B – Marketing” and I will follow up with you right away.

    Carl from Team Questrade

    #12730 Reply


    Be warned that whatever Questrade promise you via their agents when opening an account will NOT be honored for various bu$%$^@#$ reasons. Too bad I had transferred alot of money before I learned they would not honor their deal. I am selling everything and cancelling my account as soon as the market will allow me. It may cost me extra money, but I cannot support a company that outright lies to you to get you to open big accounts and then blame it on my understanding. I understood right! I am out of here!!!!

    #12321 Reply


    I would like to warn all the account holders of Questrade and any one planning to trade in future through this…recently my account was hacked by someone and he made a large no of trades without my knowledge and within an hour. Questrade has no system to inform or flag it’s user from such fraud or security breach. They did not alert me even after such a huge amount of transaction happened in my account. Luckily I logged in the evening and to my surprise my account was in a huge mess. When I called up the customer support all they had to say was that they are not liable in case of security breach. This is a huge problem..this can happen to anyone anyday. I have incurred a huge loss with no fault of mine.

    #12103 Reply


    Egh, Never Mind! You can’t trade stocks with them, just FX. Now I’m searching too hard!

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