Discount Brokerage Deals & Promotions, November 2019

*Updated Nov. 12* Welcome to November, where DIY investors, like daylight, are in for some savings when it comes to investing online. Despite the extra hour available to online brokerages, TFSA contribution room dates, RRSP contribution deadline season and tax season are all quickly approaching, and as a result, investors are already kicking the tires on where best to park their capital. Add to the mix record highs on the stock markets, and it’s a potent combination for investors interested in market momentum.

After the most turbulent month in the history of online brokerages in the US that saw trading commission fees drop to zero, the moose in the room for Canadian discount brokerages is how to temper expectations for zero-commission trading. There is clearly demand for it across social media and among DIY investors, and there is even supply in the form of a couple of online brokers ponying up commission-free trading of one kind or another.

The next best option to fully dropping commissions to zero, is a generous helping of commission-free trades (or cash back) to win over investor loyalty.

It is against that backdrop that we see the Canadian discount brokerage deals activity at a bit of a crossroads this month. On the one hand, the uptick in investor interest is imminent, so there have to be offers coming to market soon. On the other, brokerages are watching one another carefully to see which major online brokerage makes the first move with respect to pricing or promotions (or both) going into the end of 2019.

Already at the beginning of the month we’ve witnessed some bold moves by BMO InvestorLine, with the launch of a new cash back offer geared towards bigger balances than have ever been pursued before. Other brokerages, such as RBC Direct Investing are in the mix with commission-free offers, and bank-owned brokerages National Bank Direct Brokerage and Scotia iTRADE are offering up free trades on an annual basis to certain account holders. In the case of National Bank Direct Brokerage, young investors (under 30 years old) can get 10 commission-free trades per month (as well as a discounted commission fee thereafter). For Scotia iTRADE, the Ultimate banking package with Scotiabank provides 10 commission-free trades in the first year and 5 commission-free trades every year thereafter.

All told, there’s plenty of activity to keep things warm, toasty and inviting for DIY investors looking for promotions or deals to open or add funding to an online investing account. Of course, there’s still likely more to come, so be sure to check back through the month or follow us on Twitter for more deals announcements.

Expired Deals

Scotia iTrade’s $50 cash back and $6.99 per trade promotion officially expired at the end of October. This unique approach to a promotion signals that there’s something creative being cooked up in the iTRADE kitchen and we’ll be watching to see what ultimately surfaces over the next few weeks.

Although it has been replaced by a new offer already, there was a technical expiry of the summer cash back promotions from BMO InvestorLine, which retired their tiered cash back promotion that started off at a minimum deposit tier or $100,000.

Extended Deals

No extensions to report at the time of publication

New Deals

BMO InvestorLine is pushing the line even higher on the top end of both the cash back and the deposit level required to qualify for it with the launch of their latest cash back promotion. The new deal has an initial qualifying deposit tier of $250,000 and associated cash back of $400, and tops out at a new high for a deposit tier of $5M+ for which a whopping $5,000 bonus can be paid out.

*Update November 12 – CIBC Investor’s Edge has launched a brand new cash back promotion for individuals that transfer their account out of their current online brokerage and into Investor’s Edge. The minimum deposit required to qualify for this deal is $25,000; you may be eligible to receive $100 – $400 in cash back depending on the size of your deposit. Scroll down for more details!

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

CompanyBrief DescriptionMinimum Deposit AmountCommission/Cash Offer/Promotion TypeTime Limit to Use Commission/Cash OfferDetails LinkDeadline
Jitney TradeA 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/aDiscounted Commission RatesnoneFor 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 credit60 daysAccess 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.$1,0005 commission-free trades60 days 5 commission-free trade offer December 31, 2019
Open a new RBC Direct Investing account by December 13th and you may be eligible for 25 commission-free equity and ETF trades. You must deposit or transfer $5,000 in your account by February 14th, 2020 to be able to use this promotion. Make sure that the offer code MCFT1 is applied if you wish to qualify for this deal. As always, be sure to take a look at the terms and conditions for further details. $5,00025 commission-free trades1 year Commission-Free Offer DetailsDecember 13, 2019
DisnatDesjardins 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: infodisnat@desjardins.com. See details link for more info.$10,0001% of assets transferred in the form of commission-credits (max credits: $1,000)6 monthsDisnat 1% Commission Credit Promonone
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.$25,000commission-free trades for 1 month + 1 month of advanced data.1 monthActive Trader Program December 31, 2019
When you transfer funds from another account into a CIBC Investor’s Edge account with assets worth at least A) $25,000; B) $50,000; C) $100,000, you may be eligible to receive A) $100; B) $200; or C) $400 in cash back. A) $25,000
B) $50,000
C) 100,000+
A) $100
B) $200
C) $400
Cash back will be deposited between May 18 - September 17, 2020. CIBC Cash Back Offer DetailsMarch 4, 2020
BMO InvestorLineOpen a new qualifying account at BMO InvestorLine with new assets worth at least A) $250,000; B) $500,000; C) $2M or D) $5M+, and you may be eligible to a cash back reward of up to A) $400; B) $800; C) $2,000 or D) $5,000. Use promo code SPARXCASH when registering to qualify. Be sure to read full terms and conditions.A) $250,000
B) $500,000
C) $2M
D) $5M+
A) $400
B) $800
C) $2,000
D) $5,000
Cash back will be deposited week of Aug. 17, 2020BMO InvestorLine Cash Back Offer DetailsJanuary 6, 2020
Last Updated: Nov. 1, 2019 23:00 PT

Referral Promotions

CompanyBrief DescriptionMinimum Deposit AmountIncentive StructureTime Limit to Use Commission/Cash Offer DepositDetails LinkDeadline
BMO InvestorLineIf 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. $5,000You(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, 2020
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: 476104302388759none
Scotia iTradeIf 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 daysRefer 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 fundedRefer A Friend to Qtrade Investornone
Last Updated: Nov. 1, 2019 23:00 PT

Transfer Fee Promotions

CompanyBrief DescriptionMaximum Transfer Fee Coverage AmountMinimum Deposit Amount for Transfer Fee EligibilityDetails LinkDeadline
Move your brokerage account to Questrade and they'll cover the transfer-out fee up to $150.$150n/a Transfer Fee Promo none
Transfer $15,000 or more to RBC Direct Investing and they will pay up to $135 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$15,000Confirmed 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 Rebatenone
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$25,000Contact 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$25,000Confirmed with reps. Contact client service for more information (1-800-567-3343).none
DisnatDesjardins 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$50,000Disnat 1% Commission Credit Promonone
BMO InvestorLineOpen 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. $200Contact client service for more informationContact client service for more information (1-888-776-6886)none
Last Updated: Nov. 1, 2019 23:00 PT

Other Promotions

CompanyBrief DescriptionMinimum Deposit Amount RequiredDetails LinkDeadline
DisnatDesjardins 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. $1,000Broker@ge 18-30 Promotionnone
Scotia iTradeScotiabank 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
Last Updated: Nov. 1, 2019 23:00 PT

Digital Advice + Roboadvisor Promotions

Robo-advisor / Digital advisorOffer TypeOffer DescriptionMin. Deposit Reward / PromotionPromo CodeExpiry DateLink
Discounted ManagementOpen 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.$1,0001st month no management feesKDKFNBBCNoneQuestrade Portfolio IQ Promo Offer
Cash BackOpen 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. $1,0000.5% cash back to a maximum of $1000. PROMO1000January 2, 2020SmartFolio Cash Back Promo
Cash Back - ReferralBMO 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.NoneSmartFolio Website
Transfer Fee CoverageTransfer 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 coveredNoneNoneContact customer service directly for more information.
Last Updated: Nov. 1, 2019 23:00 PT

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