Questrade Review



If you have ever looked for a Canadian stock broker, you are probably aware there aren’t many low cost brokers out there for trading Canadian stocks.  Fortunately, whether you are looking to trade Canadian or US stocks, there is a low cost option you can use, and that is Questrade.  While there are many pros and cons to investing with Questrade, there is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to stock brokers, and you will have to weigh the benefits of each broker to find the one that is the best for you.

Let’s look at the trading fees

When I first came across Questrade, I was quick to notice the low fee structure for trading both Canadian and US stocks.  This is always a huge benefit, as nothing eats away at your profits faster than high fees and commissions on your trades.

For each trade they charge 1 cent per share, each trade is subject to a minimum of $4.95 and a maximum of $9.95. This is an unusual fee structure, but it does seem to be very low cost.

This makes them an ideal Canadian Penny Stock Broker as no matter how many shares you buy in each trade, you never pay more than $9.95.

Broker assisted trades don’t cost any extra either, which is a always a bonus.

Minimum Balance

Yes, Questrade do have a minimum account size. For a stock and options trading account it’s $1,000. Regarding other accounts they say this:

Yes. A minimum  deposit of $1000 is required to open a stocks & options account.   To write/sell covered calls, a minimum net equity balance of $2500 is  required.  To trade spreads and straddles, a minimum account equity of  $5000 is required.  To write/sell naked options, a minimum net equity  balance of $25,000 is required.”

Keep these minimums in mind when considering whether to invest using Questrade.

Margin Rates

At present, the margin rates for both CAD and USD account are the prime rate + 1.5%. This is very competitive, certainly one of the cheapest I have seen.

Support

Support is offered by toll-free telephone and online chat. I have contact them via their online platform a few times and they have always been helpful and knowledgeable at the other end.  This is especially important, as timely informed customer service should be high on your list of criteria for a potential broker,

Practice Accounts

Questrade offer a free practice account to test your strategies and get used to their platform. This is a big plus in my eyes. I’m never keen on a broker that expects you learn how to use their platform on a live trading account.

Security

They are very big on security at Questrade. When you open your account, you don’t get one password, you don’t get two passwords, you get THREE!

One for the WebTrader platform, one for withdrawals and help and another for accessing account history.

Whilst this is certainly more secure, it can get a little annoying, especially if you have long passwords with many special characters (which is always a good idea).

Transfer

They claim it’s “FREE to transfer” your account from another broker, or rather they cover any fees up to $150.

There is a catch to this, they’ll only do it if your account is to the value of $25,000 CAD or more. I felt mislead by their initial claims on this, not very impressed.

Conclusion

On the whole, I feel Questrade are probably the best option if you are looking for a Canadian discount broker. They offer the most competitive fees and margin rates. I was a little irritated by their misleading “Free to transfer” claims, but I feel I can get past that.

Click here to join Questrade




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