As online trading has become increasingly popular throughout the world, a number of excellent brokerages have popped up. These brokerages each have their own specific features and usability, even if they look the same to an outsider. For this reason, there are tons of reviews about online brokers, comparing them to find which is the best in the business.
However, online reviews tend to skew towards American brokerages. You can find endless articles about Ameritrade and Fidelity Investments. But when it comes to Canadian brokerages, online content is scarce.
This is not because Canadian brokerages don’t hold up against their American counterparts. On the contrary, some Canadian brokerages provide better features and customer care and are beloved by all who use them.
To help provide some more balance, we’re taking a look at the best brokerages in Canada. We’ll also compare them with each other to choose the best all-round Canadian brokerage.
Who is Qtrade?
If you’re looking for a brokerage you can trust wholeheartedly, Qtrade might just be what you’re looking for. It’s not just that Qtrade has excellent features and usability (which we’ll get into). Qtrade is also part of Aviso Wealth. Aviso Wealth is a Canadian financial services company that is actually owned by the Credit Union Centrals, CUMIS and Desjardins.
Aviso has over twenty-five years of wealth management experience and has CAD 90 billion in assets under administration and management. Qtrade itself has been active for over fifteen years and has built up a strong reputation in that time. This Qtrade review puts it at #1, as do many media outlets in Canada.
Why is Qtrade so well-respected? Let’s do a quick Qtrade review to find out more.
The fact that Qtrade is so reliable as a legitimate investment company is a great start, but its rave reviews go much further. Qtrade has a good range of account options that suit just about every trader, whether new or experienced. While their fees are slightly higher than their direct competitors, they are still much cheaper than the major bank brokerages.
By far one of the most talked about factors in Qtrade reviews is the customer service. When trading, good customer service is crucial as you may be dealing with a lot of money. Qtrade’s customer service is always easy to reach and provides valuable help and advice when necessary.
In addition, Qtrade has the best web and mobile app which facilitate trading wherever you are and whatever the time.
Who is Questrade?
Questrade may not be owned by a company as big as Aviso, but it has great pedigree regardless. It has actually been active longer than Qtrade, opening all the way back in 1999. They control over CAD 9 billion in assets.
Questrade has been deemed reliable by the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) and the Canadian Investor Protection Fund (CIPF) and is a member of both. It is also trusted by experts such as MoneySense and Rob Carrick.
Questrade is clearly highly trustworthy, but do their features hold up? Here’s a quick Questrade review to find out.
One attractive feature Questrade offers is that you are insured for up to CAD 10 million in the case that Questrade becomes insolvent. This is a major concern people have about brokerages that reliability and experience on their own do not resolve.
Questrade is considered to have the lowest fees of their direct competitors, even if the difference is not so significant to those trading large amounts. Questrade reviews have traditionally rated the company as the best in the industry, and although it has lost that status recently, it is still highly respected.
On the downside, the Questrade mobile app has its issues and the customer service is occasionally called out by frustrated customers.
Who is BMO Investorline?
If you’re not familiar, BMO is the Bank of Montreal, a centuries-old and trusted Canadian institution. Founded in 1817, BMO was successfully serving Canadians long before any of our great-grandparents were born.
BMO Investorline is therefore a great option for anyone who considers trust and reliability their greatest concern.
Is BMO Investorline good enough to stack up against its non-bank competitors? A quick BMO Investorline review can show us where it shines and who should avoid it.
BMO Investorline Review
BMO Investorline charges higher fees than non-bank brokerages, but its fees are worth it for people with large portfolios. BMO Investorline is not just trustworthy, but is actually committed to customer education, banking on your success rather than just your business.
The BMO online trading platform is considered by many to be the best, and is certainly one of the most popular. You’ll also find all the features you could possibly need to make trades with any account type that suits your portfolio.
BMO Investorline reviews by customers are also uniformly positive when it comes to customer service. It is definitely a safe choice, while still providing everything offered by other brokerages.
To get an answer as to the best Canadian brokerage, let’s compare the above 3 options.
Qtrade vs Questrade vs BMO
|Low fees||Lowest fees||Higher fees – lowest offered by a bank brokerage|
|Excellent mobile app||Buggy app with a number of customer complaints||Best web platform, middling mobile app|
|Best customer service||Some customer service complaints||Great customer service|
|Comprehensive account types and features||Comprehensive account types and features||Comprehensive account types and features|
As you can see from the above comparison, Qtrade, Questrade, and BMO Investorline are all great options, with similar account types and features but some differences in customer service and fees. If we have to choose a “winner”, Qtrade edges it, and this opinion is echoed by many expert reviews. Customers love all 3 options, and your choice will ultimately come down to personal preference.
Canadian brokerages are among the best in the world, and perhaps deserve more reviews detailing their excellent features. Qtrade, Questrade, and BMO are the cream of the crop, but there are a number of other great Canadian options.